The Common Core standards will be much more challenging than that of the CST’s. These tests are designed so that the student will be forced to think logically and adeptly. Instead of a solving for the answer through plugging in answers, students will be asked to explain why the given answer is either correct or incorrect. They’re not looking for students to memorize equations and plug numbers in; it’s testing their very ability to rationalize. However, students are only required to take the Common Core test once during the eleventh grade versus taking the CST's annually.
From the Common Core Website: “The standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers. With American students fully prepared for the future, our communities will be best positioned to compete successfully in the global economy.”
“Common Core is their (the people who run education) attempt at making education better,” said Mr. Poveda. “It could change the entire curriculum and radically affect [everything].”
Math and English are going to be the first subjects to change under the Common Core standards. “We don’t know where everybody is going with all of the different curriculum. We’re starting with English and math right now,” said Mrs. Hays. “In English classes, it’s going to be more of what we love to do anyway. It’s bringing in multiple sources and having you guys formulate an opinion based on those multiple sources… it’s less multiple choice and more analysis.”
According to Mr. Poveda, the new standards may change the composition of the math courses being offered. The topics being taught in math class may be altered. We may even end up with generalized math courses based upon grade-level. “If, however, it’s now tenth-grade math, I’m going to teach them a little bit of Algebra, a little geometry, a little bit of Algebra 2, Trig…all rolled up into one course.”
TOSA’s (Teacher on special assignment) have been hired by the district to educate people on the new Common Core.
“So, how’s Common Core going to be? We honestly don’t know. We will have to see how it ultimately plays out,” Mr. Poveda said.
These new standards are supposed to take effect in California during the 2013-2014 school year, but the date has not yet been made official.