Northwest Regional Comprehensive Center

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Common Core State Standards

NWRCC provides support to our state education agencies by offering access to information, experts, and opportunities for discussion on CCSS issues.

Education Northwest has more information on CCSS at
Common Core State Standards (CCSS)
A Closer Look at the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics: An Orientation Module

Education Northwest released an introductory module that will assist teachers, administrators, and leaders of kindergarten through high school in building an understanding of the Common Core State Standards for mathematics. The materials include facilitator notes, slideshows, and handouts. The activities in each session are designed to support teams in working together to explore various aspects of the standards.

A First Look at the Common Core and College and Career Readiness

ACT's new report looking at student performance relative to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and college and career readiness will be of interest to those in states adopting the CCSS. The report establishes a baseline of performance on the Standards by using a sample comprising a quarter-million typical high school students and then discusses how states, districts, and schools can support the implementation of the Common Core State Standards going forward.

Common Core State Standards

The National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) have released the public draft of the K–12 Common Core Standards. (March 2010) The standards outline grade-level specific goals, as well as college- and career-readiness standards.

The final standards were released in June 2010.

Core Commons: Emerging Strategies and Issues in Implementing the Common Core

The Education Commission of the States (ECS) released a new resource for states, policymakers, and the public on the implementation of the Common Core State Standards. ECS tracks state progress on the development and implementation of common core strategies and policies. In addition, ECS explores the critical issues states encounter as they move to full implementation.

Now What? Imperatives & Options for "Common Core" Implementation & Governance

The Fordham Institute released a paper based on responses from experts from across the education sector to a dozen questions on the future of the Common Core. The Institute synthesized some of their collective input and framed three possible models for governing an implementation process:

  1. "Let's Become More Like France." We picture a powerful Common Core governing board—probably via a new compact among participating states—to oversee the standards, assessments, and many aspects of implementation, validation, and more.
  2. "Don't Rock the Boat." We keep the Common Core footprint as small as possible. An existing group is charged with updating the standards five or ten years hence, but otherwise everything is left to states, districts, and the market.
  3. "One Foot before the Other." This middle ground foresees an interim coordinating body that promotes information sharing and capacity building among participating states, which remain in charge of implementation. By the time the Common Core needs revising, this interim body may evolve into something more permanent or may itself make recommendations for long-term governance.
On the Road to Implementation: Achieving the Promise of the Common Core State Standards

Achieve has released a publication identifying the key areas that state policymakers will need to consider to implement the new common core standards with fidelity. The guide is organized by topic with short chapters and is meant to be the starting point from which state and district leaders and their allies can organize and begin the necessary discussions around key topics to successfully implement the standards.

P21 Common Core Toolkit

The Partnership for 21st Century Skills released a toolkit to support state and district education leaders who are implementing Common Core State Standards (CCSS). The P21 Common Core Toolkit shows what aligning P21 skills and CCSS looks like through examples and sample lesson ideas, and identifies useful resources for education leaders currently working on CCSS implementation.

Spotlight on the Common Core State Standards: What Do District Administrators Need to Know?

Education Northwest released a brief that reviews actions district administrators should consider taking now to prepare their schools for Common Core State Standards (CCSS) implementation. Included in the four-page brief are suggestions for drafting an implementation plan; planning long-range, articulated professional development; developing a transition plan and curriculum framework; and more.

States' Progress and Challenges in Implementing Common Core State Standards

In the fall of 2010, the Center on Education Policy surveyed state officials about their efforts to adopt and implement the Common Core State Standards in reading and math. The survey found that states that have adopted the standards have plans for changing policies and programs, such as developing or adopting new assessments, modifying curriculum materials, and offering professional development for teachers, to ensure that the standards are fully implemented at the classroom level. However, many of these changes will not be fully in place until 2013 or later.

The Common Core State Standards and Teacher Preparation: The Role of Higher Education

The Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities released a brief outlining an action agenda for the role of higher education institutions in ensuring the success of the Common Core State Standards. Highlights include:

  • Aligning higher education curriculum with K–12 curriculum (which includes both adapting admissions standards and revising curricula of first year courses that act as bridges between K–12 and college majors)
  • Preparing and educating teachers, both prospective and practicing (which includes revising curriculum in disciplinary departments to prepare teachers to teach the Common Core State Standards, revising professional preparation coursework and experiences, and working in partnerships with professional development programs)
  • Conducting research on issues of teaching and learning the Common Core State Standards, teacher quality, and the implementation of the Common Core State Standards
  • Establishing and sustaining long-term partnerships with other actors and agencies in the educational system