Higher Georgia Standards

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The Continuous Road to Higher Georgia Standards

Building on the higher standards that were introduced in Georgia is part of the state’s continuous improvement objective. The bottom line will always be the children who fill our classrooms. The above photo was taken on the Georgia Partnership’s 2007 Bus Trip Across Georgia stop at Watkinsville’s Rocky Branch Elementary School. The 2008 Georgia Teacher of the Year Emily Jennette took time to pose with these beaming second graders. These children are now college age.

Although the Georgia Partnership continues to endorse implementation of the higher standards (Georgia Performance Standards), we believe open dialogue is prudent and welcome.

The Better Standards for a Better Georgia Coalition held an in-depth review and working session of the Georgia Draft Plan to Implement the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).  The attendees discussed the overall plan and looked at school and student accountability, as well as Georgia’s school grading system.  You can view a short video summary of that session here, including comments from the Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education’s Policy and Research Director, Dr. Dana Rickman. (July 19)

Here’s a commentary from a Maureen Downey AJC ‘Get Schooled’ blog that reviews results after five years (October 5):  At five-year mark, is Common Core delivering on promise of improved academics?

Thomas B. Fordham Institute
Looking for Common Core/higher standards supporting background?  The Fordham Institute is one of the best information resources.  Information here dates back to 2015:

Information from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute: The Institute is a right of center think tank that believes the implementation of higher standards is the right thing to do.  Their leadership is in the thick of the fight to save the higher standards. Most current posts go top to bottom.

Common Confusion – Most Kids in America Aren’t On Track for Success.  So Why Don’t They or Their Parents Know it?  Mike Petrilli:  In May, a new organization called Learning Heroes released a survey with a startling finding: 90 percent of parents believe their children are performing at “grade level” or higher in their schoolwork. (September 21, 2016)

This information provides unique insights into what has been and continues to be a flash point in the pro-con discussion of the higher standards:  Common Core Math in the K-8 Classroom – Results from a National Teacher Survey. (June 23, 2016)

In this U.S. News & World Report story, the Thomas B. Fordham’s Robert Pondiscio argues the Common Core has strengthened many states’ proficiency standards: Common Core’s Surprisingly Deep Roots. (February 29, 2016)

The AJC ran this commentary from Fordham asking how good is Georgia’s Milestones assessment test (subscription may be required): We know Georgia’s new state tests are harder.  But are they better? (February 22, 2016)

Have we seen progress?  Fordham says, yes! School policies have gotten smarter in the decade after ‘No Child left Behind.’ (February 12, 2016)

As some states continue to talk about instituting their own version of higher standards, Fordham warns:  Common Core State Standards aren’t so easy to replace. (February 2016)

Common Core math continues to cause parental angst.  Fordham says:  Why parents don’t need to fear Common Core math. (January 2016)

Many Common Core opponents say it’s over for the higher standards. President Mike Petrilli says not true:  A Common Core check-up: Not dead yet. (December 2015)

There has been a big difference in the testing numbers states report and the results of the national NAEP test.  Fordham reports: Thanks to Common Core, most states will finally close the “Honesty Gap.” (May 2015)

The Fordham’s Mike Petrilli has a few words for the naysayers who say schools are failing because of the new higher standards:  Not meeting standards: A warning sign, not a death sentence. (March 2015)

Here’s a bit of a “heavier” look at the Common Core from Fordham:  Moral facts and the Common Core. (March 2015)

Mike Petrilli is frustrated at the opposition to the higher standards being attributed to Republican presidential maybe-candidates.  Here he suggests questions reporters might ask: Nine questions – What does it even mean to oppose the Common Core? (January 2015)

Georgia News/Background Informaation

Here are a few media reports that provide some insight in the progress of the higher standards implementation in our state. Some material goes back to November 2013 but remains on the page for historical context.

The Georgia Department of Education offers a variety of information on their web site.

Georgia!  Stay the course!  That’s the message in this Fordham Institute message contained in a Maureen Downey AJC blog: Honesty is best policy as Georgia learns fewer than 40 percent of kids on track in reading, math. (September 2015)

Poll:  Most Georgians support Common Core
Atlanta Journal-Constitution (April 2015)

When the Common Core was born back in 2009, Georgia’s current governor, Sonny Perdue, was one of the leaders for the new, higher standards.  He believes in them now more than ever.  Read this piece from the Peach Pundit!  Here’s another piece from Fox News. (2014)

More from former Governor Perdue.  He remains a strong proponent of the Common Core several years after leading fellow governors to adopt the new standards.  Read what he has to say in National Review Online:  The Common Core Blame Game! (2014)

The Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education’s November 12, 2013 Critical Issues Forum focused on the Common Core State Standards/Georgia Performance Standards.  Now, four years later, that Forum still has relevance for effectively explaining why the higher standards are good for the state.
Guest speaker was Mr. Mike Petrilli, Executive Vice President, Thomas B. Fordham Institute.  A panel discussion offering a variety of perspectives followed.
View the videotape now.