Common Core & National Standards — Preschool Is Next 

May 17, 2016 by

by Jason Richwine –
The Educational Testing Service (ETS) — the company that helps develop and administer standardized tests such as the SAT and GRE — put out a research paper a few weeks ago recommending that policymakers “discuss the creation of national standards or guidelines for pre-K age 4.” The ETS research finds “overwhelmingly” positive views of national preschool standards among experts in state departments of education across the country.
Of course, we already have de facto national standards for K–12 through the “Common Core,” which the Obama administration incentivized states to adopt back in 2009. The sudden existence of national standards for K–12 — something states had resisted for years — has led to much controversy over content and implementation. Nevertheless, it seems inevitable that policymakers will push to extend Common Core down to the preschool level. Even when the K–12 standards were first written, experts were already thinking about aligning pre-K standards with Common Core’s expectations for kindergarten. ETS wants to keep that ball moving forward.

The confluence of national standards and preschool is a good example of how government persistently centralizes and expands, regardless of whether it has strong theoretical and empirical reasons for doing so. When Common Core was written, its validation committee acknowledged that it was mainly “professional judgment,” not research evidence, that informed the standards. “It was pretty clear from the start that nobody thought there was sufficient evidence for any of the standards,” one member stated. Now that Common Core implementation is underway, proof of its usefulness is difficult to detect. If the standards have helped students at all so far, the gains have been tiny.

Source: Common Core & National Standards — Preschool Is Next | National Review

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