One Teacher’s Opinion on Common Core – Be Wise in the Sniffing.

Dr.  Diane Ravitch wrote in her blog today:

“In these times of austerity, I wonder how much money districts and states have available to implement the standards faithfully. I wonder how much money they will put into professional development. I wonder about the quality of the two new assessments that the U.S. Department of Education laid out $350 million for.

These are things I wonder. But how can I possibly pass judgment until I find out how the standards work in real classrooms with real children and real teachers?”

Many people commented below her blog. I added the following response: 


As a teacher, this is what I see. Here in FL, we had Sunshine State Standards. Then, they rewrote them and we had New Generation Sunshine State Standards. Then, we had Benchmarks added to our planning. Now, we have these new Common Core Standards. Each revision/ rewrite came with its own slew of training, training materials, consultants, remediation, tutoring companies, and, of course, textbooks. All costing us a fortune.

What is the difference between the SSS, NGSSS, Benchmarks, and CCC ? -Not much, from this teacher’s perspective. They keep flipping the same script. Is it an improvement? I agree with Diane, there is no way to know yet. Will it cost a fortune? Yes, it already is costing a fortune. Could our teacher planning/training days be better spent than learning yet another curriculum frame… yes. No doubt.

But, it has been clear for some time, my teacher perspective is not a concern. Nor, my parent perspective either – as I see each new curriculum coming with its own slew of standardized test assessments. No, my perspective is not the one that matters to our policy makers, apparently.

It is unfortunate to say, but most of our policy makers are only concerned with the lobbyists’ perspective…the corporate perspective: The Profit Factor.

Yes, we have connected the dots… we may not see all the dots yet, but we see enough. We see enough to know that we must become as loud and influential as those corporate lobbyists… And, we can.

We are teacher lobbyists, parent lobbyists, citizen lobbyists. Together, we can be pretty loud and influential. Together, we can make a difference.

Together is the key.

“Following the dog’s example, you will have to be wise in sniffing, smelling, and estimating these fine and meaty books …

you should break the bone and suck the substantific marrow” ~Rabelais


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