Tag Archives: Common Core

What Happened in Your State This February?

capitol-building-150x150This past month, twenty policy analysts published reports about what occurred in the following states: Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.

ESSA Implementation

Louisiana: Clancy Ratliff posted Louisiana Department of Education Publishes Public Feedback on ESSA.

Virginia: In Virginia’s Transition to ESSA, Mabel Khawaja examined ESSA implementation through the lens of both K–12 and higher education.

Vermont: Anne Slonaker shared Vermont’s State Plan in response to ESSA.

Ohio: Robin Holland noted that Ohio’s ESSA Draft Plan (was) Now Available for Comments.

Readers may want to visit ESSA Implementation in the States to see what your state is doing.

Higher Education

Idaho: In 60X20 in Idaho: Update on Complete College Idaho, Karen Uehling noted the formation of a task force by the governor, the governor’s “adult complete” scholarships, and a proposed new community college.

Indiana: Katherine Wills described a dual credit program between a Fort Wayne high school and East Allen University that endeavors to ensure that refugee students have the same opportunities to succeed in college as their non-refugee classmates.

Washington: Amanda Espinosa-Aguilar shared concerns about dual enrollment.

Connecticut: Stephen Ferruci analyzed Proposed Legislation Regarding DREAMERs, Illegal Aliens, and Higher Education in CT with legislators proposing bills reflecting both sides of the debate.

Nebraska: Gretchen Oltman wrote about Governor Ricketts agreeing to cut only $13.3 million from the University of Nebraska’s current budget.

Georgia: Janice Walker shared that Senate Bill 79 would create a gaming commission, and a portion of revenue generated by casinos would be directed toward scholarships.

North Dakota: In Updated North Dakota 2017, Ronda Marman reported the following:

  • The governor cut the North Dakota University System by 20%.
  • A regulation proposing to reduce notice of termination to faculty from one year to 90 days generated a lot of comment.
  • A new workforce report was released.

California:  In his Report on Contingent Faculty in Higher Education, Dan Melzer wrote, “contingent faculty are now the majority of all faculty at U.S. colleges and universities.”

Kentucky: Mary P. Sheridan encouraged faculty and educators in Kentucky to look at the impact of charter schools as Kentucky decides whether to allow them.


Idaho: Darlene Dyer reported that the State Board of Education will oversee the evaluation process, and monies are to be allocated to train administrators and supervisors to conduct the evaluations.

Arkansas: Grover Welch shared that the Arkansas Senate Education Committee passed legislation that would exempt records of “security incidents, emergency planning and those that [can] ‘reasonably be expected to be detrimental to the public safety’” from FOIA.

Minnesota: Ezra Hyland posted a number of reports:

New Jersey: Kristen Turner wrote that the New Jersey Board of Education rejected proposed amendments that would give charter schools “the authority to grant provisional and standard certificates.”

Pennsylvania: Aileen Hower shared two articles about the following:

Pre-K–12 and Higher Education

Michigan: Leslie Roberts discusses the debate in Michigan regarding the retention of the Common Core. 

South Dakota: Liza Hazlett posted 2016–2017 Raises for SD Educators Facing Discrepancies and Discord.

Reinterpreting the CCSS

Light bulb changing from old to new.What might happen if educators took interpretation of the Common Core State Standards into their own hands?

That is the question explored in an article entitled “Rewriting the Common Core State Standards for Tomorrow’s Literacies” by Jessica Van Cleave and Sarah Bridges-Rhoads in the latest issue of English Journal.

Do check out the full article, but here are some excerpts:

“We want to emphasize that the standards movement is not just a narrative thrust upon educators from above but also is a narrative that can and must be rewritten each day in our classrooms.”

The authors explain that the same attitudes we ask our students to adopt in approaching texts apply with the Common Core:

“When we understand language as partial, never neutral, and contextually dependent, we can ask alternative questions that invite collaborative explorations of the CCSS rather than questions that incite disagreements over its meaning . . . . We suggest that having conversations [with colleagues] guided by the question, ‘What if we read the CCSS as . . .?’ allows the CCSS to remain relevant to any cultural, historical, or technological movement in which it is put to work . . . .The shift from seeking the truth to continuously producing truth in conjunction with others, then, invites constant re-imagining of the CCSS.”

This approach makes it possible to see what some consider an outdated emphasis on the teaching of Shakespeare as an opportunity instead to explore via technology the many ways Shakespeare “circulates in the multiple environments in which we work and live.”

And while it appears the CCSS prioritize print-based text, the authors suggest “What if we read text as print-based text and digital text and multimedia text and  . . .  including a list of ands every time we encounter the word text in the CCSS renders the standards unfinished and allows them to remain relevant regardless of the historical moment.”

The point behind this shift in approach, the authors argue, is that “changing conversations about the CCSS away from battles between the right and wrong way to read them and towards questions of what possible readings we might enact, presents an opportunity to shift how the history of the CCSS progresses from here.”