The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) were developed through a state-led initiative to establish consistent and clear education standards for English-Language Arts and Mathematics that would better prepare students for success in college, career and the competitive global economy. The goal is to allow students to delve deeper into the subject matter and better promote critical thinking, analysis, project-based learning, writing and communication. 45 states, including California, have adopted CCSS, and they went into effect in this state during the 2014-2015 school year. The San Carlos School district has embraced CCSS and has invested heavily in professional development for our staff around pedagogy based on these standards. Most educators’ view is that CCSS is a marked improvement over the current “mile wide and inch deep” standards currently in use in California. Here are some additional resources to learn more about Common Core:
- This video from Teaching Channel does a good job laying out the principles behind common core and the benefits to our students
- This position paper from the San Mateo County School Boards Association outlines this history of CCSS development, how CCSS changes teaching and learning, and the distinction between standards, curriculum, and assessments
The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) is a multi-state effort to create new education standards that are rich in content and practice, arranged in a coherent manner across disciplines and grades to provide all students an internationally benchmarked science education. The standards were developed by a consortium of 26 states and by the National Science Teachers Association, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the National Research Council, and Achieve, a nonprofit organization that was also involved in developing math and English standards.
- NGSS: A Vision for K-12 Science Education presents an overview of the essential components of the Next Generation Science Standards.