common core

Indiana lawmakers held the first of a series of hearings on the future of Common Core State Standards yesterday.

The first hearing focused on the quality of the standards, while subsequent meetings will look at assessment and cost.

Florida Department of Education

On The Florida Roundup: Our state's leadership goes through more upheaval, this time with the resignation of Education Commissioner Tony Bennett. He will be the fifth education head (including interims) to depart in the 31 months since Governor Rick Scott took office.

Why has there been so much turnover? What impact does the latest change have on students and teachers? 

Plus: the Hialeah shooting drew national attention again to gun deaths in our state.  We look at what factors - or at least correlations - can be gleaned about violence and gun ownership. 

Why School Grades In Florida Are Full Of Controversy

Jul 31, 2013

An "A" was always the gold standard.  Every student knows that the better the grade, the greater the reward, whether the reward is a gold star, a trophy or a scholarship.

It’s no different for schools.  Since 1999, Florida schools have worked to measure student learning gains and to objectively measure teacher and school performance.  An "A" school brings recognition, prestige and financial gain.

But measuring school accountability has become more difficult than anyone thought it would be.  And, as recent legislative decisions show, may carry huge political consequences.

Rubio Opposes Florida's Common Education Standards

Jul 30, 2013

Add U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida to those opposing shared education standards fully adopted by Florida and 44 other states.

The standards, known as Common Core, have been under fire from those on the political right and left. Conservatives argue the federal government coerced states with money to adopt the standards, undermining local control of education. Those on the left protest increased testing.

Are search engines really more complicated than children?

That question occurred to me last week when the annual earnings report for Yahoo! came out and it became clear that CEOs are cut a lot more slack than teachers are.

Earlier this week we published an email sent to Florida Republicans urging their support for Common Core State Standards fully adopted by Florida and 44 other states. The letter was signed by five former Republican Party of Florida chairmen, including American Conservative Union chairman Al Cardenas.

Common Core opponents have written a rebuttal.

Five former Republican Party of Florida leaders have sent out an email asking state GOP members to support new education standards adopted by Florida and 44 other states.

The letter is signed by state Sen. John Thrasher and four other former state party chairmen. When Florida has raised its standards in the past, Thrasher wrote in the email, it has resulted in better scores on international tests and gains from black and Hispanic students.”

Almost all the states and Washington, D.C., are grappling with a big challenge as the new school year nears: getting teachers up to speed on the Common Core, a sweeping set of new education standards for English language arts and math.

The Common Core will soon apply to most of America's students from kindergarten through high school. The policymakers behind the Core know that it could fail if they don't help teachers make the change. So this summer, the state of Maryland has been hosting what it calls "academies" to do just that.

When Gov. Rick Scott and Education Commissioner Tony Bennett met with school superintendents in April, Florida’s new education standards led the questions.

Florida Legislative leaders left no wiggle room in last week’s letter to Education Commissioner Tony Bennett: They want Florida to pull out of a multi-state partnership developing a next generation standardized test to (mostly) replace the FCAT.