Jim Goodnight: Common Core critical

June 13, 2013 

Critical Common Core

Regarding the June 5 article “Forest no fan of Common Core”: I am concerned by misleading information regarding the Common Core State Standards.

The CCSS effort is not an intrusion by the federal government. It was initiated by the National Governors’ Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, whose members were concerned about inconsistencies in learning and accountability across all states.

For example, the North Carolina test rated 80 percent of eighth-graders as proficient in math when only 36 percent scored proficient on the National Assessment of Educational Progress. Evidently, the state sets a lower bar for student performance. This bar varies by state.

Without shared standards and common measures, how will states know whether they are making progress? The NGA and the CCSSO invited educators, curriculum experts and policymakers to develop a curriculum framework – or a common set of standards. Using this framework, each state can develop a curriculum that meets its own needs yet is based on standards shared by 45 states and the District of Columbia.

In a competitive, global economy, we need to know where our students stand. Will they continue to fall behind students in other countries in the mastery of basic skills? North Carolina should strive to be a national leader in producing talent ready to succeed in today’s workforce. CCSS is critical to that goal.

Jim Goodnight

CEO, SAS, Cary

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