These tests might reveal that some straight-A students aren’t measuring upon the new scale. This might be a hard pill to swallow at first, but we can’t ignore the reality that previous standards and assessments haven’t prepared enough students for the 21st century. We are doing a disservice to our students when we dole out high test scores based on weak standards. Over time, by holding our students to a higher bar, we will see great success with Common Core-aligned assessments.
The uncertainty surrounding teacher training and assessments does not outweigh the detriment we put upon our students if we water down or refuse to implement Common Core.
We have an unwritten contract with our students to prepare them to lead successful lives and contribute to society. As we move into an age of greater technology, ever-changing job opportunities, and a growing (and virtually unknown) professional skill set, our students must be critical thinkers, problem solvers, and strategic decision makers. Common Core provides these 21st century, non-negotiable skills – allowing us to honor our end of the bargain.
Why would we not prepare our students for their futures?
Rob Leichner is a Teach For America alumnus and a 10th year math teacher at West Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte, North Carolina. He is an America Achieves fellow a National Academy for Advanced Teacher Education teaching fellow.