Yesterday, I predicted that within the next month or two, more than half of states would have signed onto the Common Core Standards. Well, that was before seeing today’s article in EdWeek that shows how fast states are signing on. In fact, even though Wyoming was the 14th to make it official, 23 have already begun processes toward adopting the standards. The Council of Chief State Officers, one of the organizers of the Common Core along with the National Governors Association, has predicted that 41 states will have joined the movement by the end of the year.
It seems a lot of states are rushing to get in on the action. One way to get points in Race to the Top is by adopting the standards by August 2nd. It seems that is a big motivator. EdWeek thinks there will be a rush before the date. Case in point: the Florida State Board of Education doesn’t have a meeting until September, but is calling a conference call on July 27 specifically for the purpose of adopting the standards. Four states adopted them before they were even finished! Kentucky must not have much faith in their own standards. Few states seem to have had much controversy in adopting them, which should be worrisome to more people. While I am in full support of national standards, it is clear that law makers are more concerned with looking like they’re doing the right thing than actually evaluating the situation. Is it really possible that states who adopt completely new standards within a matter of weeks or less have actually evaluated them? I’m looking at you, Maryland, Kentucky, Hawaii, and West Virginia. Then again, there are problems on the opposite end with some states worried more about whether they are giving up control, rather than whether these are better standards.
My question: when will we start seeing national standards in other areas? Will we? I’d especially like to see more work done on teaching standards.