Common Core Implementation Needs Adjustment

President Linda Hampton's Statement on Common Core

February 20, 2014

Parents and teachers working together are the best team for creating student success. It takes all of us working together to nurture, encourage and help our children reach their full potential. I certainly appreciate the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) for their statewide efforts to link parents to the schools and teachers.

In regards to Common Core State Standards (Oklahoma Academic Standards) we recognize it is law, not curriculum, and should be used more as a roadmap of where we all want students to be. The OEA has taken a proactive approach by providing professional development trainings and resources to educators who are faced with this challenging transition.

It’s good to have standards, however, the concerns regarding implementation must be resolved.  As we all know, the devil is in the details.

  • First, the standards need to be developmentally appropriate and we are hearing from our members that some are not. In other words, we shouldn’t expect students to do things they are not developmentally ready for. For instance, you can’t require a baby to run before it can walk.
  • Secondly, the standards need to be phased in gradually so we don’t have students left in the gaps. Students can’t suddenly be expected to know something they haven’t been taught simply because the standards changed from one year to the next.
  • Third, we must allow teachers adequate time to collaborate and develop curriculum. Teacher influence provides a focus on learning, not solely on testing.
  • And finally adequate funding for resources and implementation is crucial. We urge parents and stakeholders to help us ensure that Common Core is properly funded and phased in properly.

Please support teachers as the standards are being implemented throughout Oklahoma schools. These standards are new for everyone and we need to be understanding and patient as we work through the details.


 

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