As one state prepares to re-examine its adoption of the Common Core State Standards, the leader of the American Federation of Teachers has called for a moratorium on high-stakes decisions linked to new tests based on the standards.
Indiana lawmakers approved legislation late last month that would require a policy and fiscal review of the common core and sent the bill to Gov. Mike Pence, a Republican, who is expected to sign it into law. The Indiana board of education retains control over the decision to keep or drop the common core and has reiterated its support for the standards, but Gov. Pence can replace six of the board’s 10 members this summer.
State schools superintendent Glenda Ritz, a Democrat, said that while the measure would not mean a pause in Indiana’s common-core implementation or reverse its progress in kindergarten and 1st grade, it would require Indiana’s previous standards to be kept in other grades, alongside the common core.
Separately, in prepared remarks for an April 30 speech last week, AFT President Randi Weingarten said that while she supports the common core, states need more time and resources for professional development, curriculum, and instruction that will reflect the new content standards, which cover English/language arts and mathematics.
Before that takes place, she argued, teachers, students, and schools should not be judged on test scores from new assessments aligned to the common core. Few schools so far have successfully shifted to use of the common core in their classrooms, Ms. Weingarten said. She also criticized the Obama administration for providing funding for test development, but not for professional development based on the common core.
A version of this article appeared in the May 08, 2013 edition of Education Week as Indiana to Review Common-Core Commitment