Council on Postsecondary Education
KENTUCKY ACCEPTS CORE ACADEMIC STANDARDS
Back row, l to r: Education Professional Standards Board Executive Director Phil Rogers, Kentucky Commissioner of Education Terry Holliday and Council on Postsecondary Education President Bob King; Front row: Education Professional Standards Board Chair Lorraine Williams, Kentucky Board of Education Chair Joe Brothers and Council on Postsecondary Education Chair Paul Patton
Photo courtesy of KDE, Amy Wallot.
In joint meeting this evening, the chairs of the Kentucky Board of Education, the Council on Postsecondary Education and the Education Professional Standards Board signed a resolution directing their respective agencies to implement the Common Core State Standards in English/language arts and mathematics, formalizing Kentucky’s agreement to integrate the standards into the state’s public education system.
With this action, Kentucky becomes the first state to formally accept the standards. Higher, clearer and more in-depth academic standards are required by Senate Bill 1, passed by the 2009 Kentucky General Assembly and codified as KRS 158.6451.
“This is an historic moment for Kentucky,” said Kentucky Board of Education Chair Joe Brothers. “With the implementation of the Common Core State Standards, teachers and administrators will have a blueprint to move the state forward in P-12 education. This is just the beginning of Kentucky’s next chapter of education reform, and it reflects the mandates of the state’s legislature – specifically, Senate Bill 1 -- and our application for federal Race to the Top funding.”
“The Common Core Standards come at an opportune time for us at EPSB as we forge ahead to meet the charges set forth by Senate Bill 1,” said EPSB Chair Lorraine Williams. “To truly make a difference in Kentucky’s students’ ability to demonstrate what they know and are able to do and to make them more competitive in the marketplace, it is a refreshing move to narrow the number of standards taught at each level. ESPB is excited to be part of this cutting edge initiative and looks forward to working with our university partners to ensure that our undergraduate and graduate teacher preparation programs embrace the Common Core Standards and prepare a stronger workforce capable of teaching the curriculum to a deeper, more rigorous level.”
“Kentucky is once again at the forefront in education reform,” said CPE Chair Paul Patton. “I am very pleased with the level of cooperation and commitment by Kentucky’s policy and education leaders in the development of these draft content standards. Consistent academic standards, aligned to college and work expectations, will help our students reach higher levels of success.”
Launched in 2009, the Common Core State Standards Initiative is a state-led effort coordinated by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). Governors and state commissioners of education from 48 states, two territories and the District of Columbia committed to developing a common core of state standards in English/language arts and mathematics for grades K-12.
CCSSO and NGA plan to release the final version of the standards in early spring.
The action by the three Kentucky boards is the beginning of the work of integrating those standards into the state’s curriculum guidelines, teacher preparation programs and higher education activities.
This action meets the mandate of Senate Bill 1, passed by the 2009 General Assembly, to revise Kentucky’s academic standards to:
- focus on critical knowledge, skills and capacities needed for success in the global economy
- result in fewer, but more in-depth standards to facilitate mastery learning
- communicate expectations more clearly and concisely to teachers, parents, students and citizens
- be based on evidence-based research
- consider international benchmarks
- ensure that the standards are aligned from elementary to high school to postsecondary education so that students can be successful at each education level
These standards are the “best of the best” of state academic requirements. They focus on knowledge like multiplication, equations, reading comprehension, language rules and more. But, they also require that students learn how to solve problems and think creatively. To help teachers successfully implement the standards, state agencies and partner groups will provide support and training starting in the summer of 2010.
Teachers will begin to provide instruction related to the standards in the fall of 2011. Students will be assessed on the Common Core Standards beginning in the spring of 2012.
The Common Core State Standards will enable participating states to:
- articulate to parents, teachers, and the general public expectations for students
- align textbooks, digital media and curricula to the internationally benchmarked standards
- ensure professional development for educators is based on identified need and best practices
- develop and implement an assessment system to measure student performance against the common core state standards
- evaluate policy changes needed to help students and educators meet the common core state college and career readiness standards
The draft Common Core State Standards are posted on the Council on Postsecondary Education’s Web site here: http://cpe.ky.gov/about/cpe/meetings/2010/Feb10JointMtgAgenda.htm. More information about the Common Core State Standards initiative is available at http://www.corestandards.org/.