Massachusetts’ Education Commissioner Mitchell Chester has recommended that Massachusetts schools adopt a unified set of national academic standards known as “Common Core Standards,” calling them as strong–if not stronger–than the state’s existing standards. In a memo he wrote to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, the commissioner listed the strengths that distinguish the Common Core standards:
- The focus on reading and writing across the curriculum
- The attention to speaking, listening, and vocabulary
- The treatment of text complexity and approaches to matching with student reading skills
- The consideration of emerging, new literacies (digital and print sources) for research and production and distribution of ideas and messages
- The treatment of varying student needs and achievement levels in the delivery of the mathematics curriculum
- The accessibility of the mathematics standards to grades K-8 teachers
- The vertical articulation of the mathematics standards as enhanced by the habits of mind that are critical to effective mathematics practice
The Board will vote tomorrow on the adoption of the standards, so stay tuned.
See which states have already adopted the Common Core standards here and follow the Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education on Twitter @MassDESE.