State Common Core Standards Face Old Dilemas
Standards setting has been going on for many decades, and the attempt by the Chief state school officers and the National Governors Association to work with 47 states is confronting many of the problems of the past-see www.ccsso.org. Here are the dilemas from the past;
– there are always complaints that the process does not include all the necessary stakeholders
-if you chose standards with a broad consensus , then” leading edge thinkers” complain you are choosing” what is “”rather than what ought (eg 21st century skills)
-Consensus is hard to reconcile with less is more. Consensus generates too many standards to make everyone happy.
-If you please specialists in a discipline like math, then people will complain you have neglected inter disciplinary content/skills.
-If standards are too general , then there will be complaints that the details will be filled in by the test makers and pedagogues.
-If experts devise the standards, then there will be complaints that elected officials and interest groups were not involved.
-It is difficult to use the same structure for math and English. The common core draft is more detailed for math.
-If you want the standards to be in schools within 4 years, people will say this is too quick (eg need for extensive professional development)