Alternatives to Common Core Standards

Aug 15, 2013 by

alternativeby Henry W. Burke

The Nebraska Department of Education is paying Mid-Continent Research for Education and Learning $47,000 to compare Nebraska’s academic standards with the Common Core standards.

The consultant found that Nebraska’s language arts standards strongly align with Common Core standards. But before the State Board of Education takes a victory lap, it should examine the Common Core standards. They are not internationally benchmarked and have never been piloted. They are mediocre at best. Some states are dropping them. Others are delaying their implementation.

The State Board of Education will begin reviewing and rewriting language arts standards this fall. The board could proceed with this long rewriting process or take a much better approach. Here are two effective yet low-cost solutions, either of which would be a great alternative to Common Core standards:

First, noted education expert Sandra Stotsky has offered her excellent “English Language Arts Curriculum Framework” absolutely free to any state or school district.

The second option would be to adopt the outstanding Texas Education Standards for English Language Arts Reading. Independent education experts have declared the Texas standards to be the best in the country. (Also, Texas has very good standards in mathematics, science and social studies.)

If we can get past our Nebraska pride, we could have a “win-win” solution — the best standards at minimal cost.

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This is the link for Dr. Stotsky’s standards:

http://www.uaedreform.org/wp-content/uploads/2000/01/Stotsky-Optional_ELA_standards.pdf

 

 

 

These are the links for the Texas Standards:

 

English Language Arts and Reading (ELAR) — http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/rules/tac/chapter110/index.html

 

Mathematics — http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/rules/tac/chapter111/index.html

 

Science — http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/rules/tac/chapter112/index.html

 

Social Studies — http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/rules/tac/chapter113/index.html

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