Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Common Core Goes to College

The New America Foundation’s position paper by Lindsey Tepe gives recommendations for how higher education can support the Common Core State Standards. However, this paper and related articles in the Chronicle  and Hechinger Report  miss the most important way for higher education to support the CCSS, namely, to work to repair or ameliorate the existing flaws in the CCSS. 
cover of position paper

An implicit assumption in Tepe's paper is that the CCSS have successfully captured what all students need to be college and career ready. If the assumption is false, the paper is advocating moves to change higher education to accommodate inappropriate standards, changes that could harm students and impede their paths to college degrees.

The CCSS have missed the mark at what is necessary for all students to succeed in college.

Many of the non-plus CCSS are currently introduced to students in credit-bearing courses of baccalaureate granting institutions. That is, the CCSS overshoots what is needed to be ready for college and includes topics that are part of what some college students need to learn while in college.

The intent of the CCSS was to help get students college (and career) ready. It is an abuse of the CCSS to use those standards as an opportunity for colleges and universities to raise admissions and/or degree requirements, and that abuse will work against the goal of giving more students the opportunity to earn college degrees.

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