This brings us to the elephant in the room. Common Core or The Florida Standards which are aligned to Common Core. The materials remain the same. Jackson has the same text books as his cousin in California. I’ve done my research, I’m an over-researcher by nature. And again, it all sounds great when you say it fast. It is nice that kids can move on a Friday from New Jersey and go to school in California the following Monday and pick up right where they left off. It sounds awesome when you say that kids are on the same page and we’ll be developing critical thinkers; they will rise to the challenge of more difficult standards. And every kid will be career and college ready at the end of high school and all on the same page? SIGN ME UP.
Sure. Walk that political line. It’s rhetoric. It sounds fantastic when you gloss over it like that. But let’s really look at our implementation of Common Core. I’ve seen it first hand with my third grader this year and to a lesser extent with my older kids. Let’s take Jackson, his first and second grade lessons were based on the older curriculum. This year a new curriculum is thrown in, teach it with “fidelity” Seminole County tells them – that means that they used only the Pearson materials (you know, the Pearson that has spent nearly $4.4 million in lobbying in recent years) and only Pearson materials, for the first 12 weeks of the school year. And get this, then we’ll use the FCAT 2.0 which is aligned with the former standards to decide if this group of third graders is worthy of fourth grade placement.