A recent article posted in Education Week by the popular writer Anthony Cody suggests the 10 biggest problems with the Common Core. The article goes into full detail about each of the following:
Error #1: The process by which the Common Core standards were developed and adopted was undemocratic.
Error #2: The Common Core Standards violate what we know about how children develop and grow.
Error #3: The Common Core is inspired by a vision market-driven innovation enabled by standardization of curriculum, tests, and ultimately, our children themselves.
Error #4: The Common Core creates a rigid set of performance expectations for every grade level, and results in tightly controlled instructional timelines and curriculum.
Error #5: The Common Core was designed to be implemented through an expanding regime of high stakes tests, which will consume an unhealthy amount of time and money.
Error #6: Proficiency rates on the new Common Core tests have been dramatically lower — by design.
Error #7: Common Core relies on a narrow conception of the purpose of K12 education as “career and college readiness.”
Error #8: The Common Core is associated with an attempt to collect more student and teacher data than ever before.
Error #9: The Common Core is not based on any external evidence, has no research to support it, has never been tested, and worst of all, has no mechanism for correction.
Error #10: The biggest problem of American education and American society is the growing number of children living in poverty.
The article concludes by stating:
Common standards, if crafted in a democratic process and carefully reviewed by teachers and tested in real classrooms, might well be a good idea. But the Common Core does not meet any of those conditions.
The Common Core has been presented as a paradigmatic shift beyond the test-and-punish policies of NCLB. However, we are seeing the mechanisms for testing, ranking, rewarding and punishing simply refined, and made even more consequential for students, teachers and schools. If we use the critical thinking the Common Core claims to promote, we see this is old wine in a new bottle, and it turned to vinegar long ago.