Sunday, January 22, 2012

US Competitiveness at Risk: Milgram and Stotsky Quoted on #CommonCore

Proponents say that Common Core "drew on" ideas from abroad, but Milgram and Stotsky spell out the truth in this article. 

They state Common Core is not "comparable to the expectation of other leading nations." 

As Rep. John Kline of the EdWorkforce Committee said "people often ask what the classroom has in common with the workplace. The answer is fairly simple: both are vital to the economic success of our country and the future prosperity of its people."

Clearly weak math standards inevitably lead to weak science standards.  Ze'ev Wurman explains why CommonCore is  Education to Raise Technology Consumers instead of Technology Creators 

Common-Core Standards Drew on Ideas From Abroad

Although a few states, such as California, want all 8th graders to take Algebra 1, the writers decided to "strike a balance," crafting guidelines that "get into serious algebra in 8th grade," without requiring classic Algebra 1 elements such as quadratic equations, he says.

That choice, among others, stoked an argument that the common standards don't meet international or university-preparation levels.

"It's absolutely a mistake not to require all of Algebra 1 [content] in 8th grade. They've got very little of Algebra 2 in there," says R. James Milgram, a professor emeritus of math at Stanford University. He served on the common standards' validation committee, but refused to approve them, in part because in his judgment they did not meet their own stated criteria of being "comparable to the expectations of other leading nations."

BTW: If/when you meet a math teacher that supports CommonCore standards, please ask them if they have ever taught Algebra II and if they have actually read the Common Core Math Standards.   I have yet to meet any supporter that can answer "yes" to both questions.

Sandra Stotsky helped shape the highly regarded standards in Massachusetts, and, like Milgram, a fellow member of the validation committee, refused to endorse the standards' international comparability. She notes that leaders of the common-standards initiative now describe them as being "informed by" other countries, not "benchmarked" to those nations' standards.

" 'Benchmarking' means you use a set of agreed-upon criteria for judging something," says Stotsky, a professor of education at the University of Arkansas, in Fayetteville. "To be 'informed' by other countries' standards means simply that they were read. Some other countries are light years ahead of what the common standards require for college readiness."


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1 comment:

Darren Burris said...

I teach Algebra II and I have read the common core math standards, and I am a supporter.