“Opt Out” groups are pushing back against what they say is too much standardized testing in Florida. The tests are changing as the state transitions to Florida Standards - an offshoot of the Common Core standards being implemented around the country.
Originally published on Thu November 13, 2014 10:48 am
Part 1 in a four-part series on reading in the Common Core era.
The Common Core State Standards are changing what many kids read in school. They're standards, sure — not curriculum. Teachers and districts still have great latitude when it comes to the "how" of reading instruction, but...
The Core standards explicitly require students to read "complex" material, and the fact is, many kids simply weren't doing that before the Core. What were they doing?
The school’s principal, Bridget McKinney majored in debate and thought the requirements for Florida’s new Common Core-based standards sounded a lot like her college classes. She needed a writing teacher for new speech and debate courses she wanted to create.
Allapattah Middle School principal Bridget McKinney sits in on one of the speech and debate classes she's required her students to take. McKinney says the Common Core standards emphasis using evidence and making arguments.
Bridget McKinney, principal at Miami's Allapattah Middle School, says her students struggle to pass the state's reading and writing tests.
So when McKinney first read the Common Core math and language arts standards used in Florida schools this year, what jumped out was the emphasis on answering questions and making arguments using examples and evidence from what students are reading.
It took McKinney back to college -- she was a speech major. So she decided her sixth, seventh and eighth graders would have to take a speech and debate course each year.
Miami-Dade Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said Florida leaders should rethink the scope and purpose of education testing, and give schools more time to prepare for new math and language arts standards.
The Lee County school board has reversed its decision to reject state tests, after board member Mary Fischer changed her mind. Last week the board became the first in Florida to refuse to offer state tests to its students on a 3-2 vote.
Darlene Paul, principal of West Defuniak Elementary, speaks to a student during a visit to a third-grade classroom. Paul says she has been impressed with the academic success of young students who have been taught only using the new Florida Standards.
For the past year the Hechinger Report and StateImpact Florida have taken you into two schools to hear what preparations for Florida’s new Common Core-based standards sound like. The standards outline what students should know in math and language arts. When classes start this fall every grade in every Florida public school will use them. But are schools ready?
Now, we share with you what we've learned along with the Hechinger Report's Jackie Mader.
The school year may be over, but the next chapter in public education begins in less than three months: Common Core State Standards.
However, Florida public school kids won’t follow Common Core, at least not in name. The state legislature this spring eliminated references to Common Core from state education policy. Still, the principles of Common Core remain: more rigorous education standards to better prepare students for college and careers.
Monroe Middle School science teacher Andrea Groves works with a student. Many science classes will add more reading and writing assignments as Florida finishes the switch to new K-12 math and language arts standards this fall.
This story is part of a series from The Hechinger Report and StateImpact Florida looking at how Florida schools are getting ready for Common Core standards. Read — and listen to — the first two stories here and here.