Removing Bigfoot from the Common Core

 

The camera-shy Sasquatch has eluded Bigfoot hunters for generations as veritable proof of the creature’s existence has yet to be presented.  Undeniable evidence of the Skunk-Ape, as he is known in the swamps of Florida, would convince the public that this “Bigfoot” creature of legend is not a myth.  Urban legends and myths are fascinating, in part, due to their ambiguity and the inability to prove them true or untrue.

     However, I find that many myths exist about the Common Core State Standards despite the ability to easily find verifiable facts about these new standards.  One does not need to camp deep in a dark forest for a mythical creature stakeout to find some basic truths about the Common Core.  Despite this, the Governor of Florida, Rick Scott, recently reinforced several of these C.C.S.S. myths when he openly questioned the federal government’s role in the implementation and assessment of these new standards.  The Governor explains on his website, “I told the federal government we are rejecting their overreach into our state education system by withdrawing from PARCC [CCSS assessment].”     Amazingly, though, Florida’s Department of Education website has a link titled, “Demystifying the Movement: Answers to Common Myths about the Common Core State Standards.” As Governor Scott attempts to “mystify” the new standards by questioning federal involvement, the state’s own website debunks his obvious politicizing by stating, “The federal government does not have a hand in development of the aligned assessments pertaining to CCSS.”

     I understand the concerns of over-testing our students and the amount these assessments are costing states.  To that end, I maintain that we need to create cost-efficient and effective measures of students’ learning regardless of the standards that we are implementing in our schools.  This unmistakable challenge should transcend political finger-pointing and remains unmet nationally, in states that have and have not adopted the Common Core State Standards.

Regardless of political affiliations, educational stakeholders-from state legislators to administrators and teachers-have a responsibility to all schoolchildren to illuminate facts about these new standards, not to introduce Sasquatch, Bigfoot, or our beloved Floridian, the Skunk-Ape to the discussion.


  • AnneJolly

    Interesting post, Rob. I’m

    Interesting post, Rob. I’m hoping that we’ll see fewer and stronger assessments – assessments that can be used to help teachers identify areas in which they need to work together to become more accomplished teachers. 

    I’m from Alabama, so I know the bigfoot mystique you’re talking about. He’s on the loose here, too! 🙂

    • Rob Kriete

      Thanks, Anne.  I support

      Thanks, Anne.  I support fewer, stronger and cost efficient assessments as well.   

  • CristinaMFernandez

    Bigfoot…ahhhh!

    State leaders have to get their act together.  I feel as if there is no forum for teachers to easily find information about the CCSS.  As we discussed in our recent face to face meeting, great teachers will seek out this information.  But some teachers are just in survival mode, and are not going to seek out this information.  They just filter it as it comes and just deal.  Down here in Fl., some just chill in the pool just waiting to see what comes down the pipe next.

    However, where should teachers start?  They may be politically savvy and read these statements by the Govenor and be fooled into thinking that these myths are a reality.  Where are the resources?  Where are the true facts?  What’s a poor teacher to do when Bigfoot is chasing you???

  • Rob Kriete

    Cristina-

    Cristina-

    Is that the “Sasquatch” that lives with you?  The little Skunk-Ape I posted in the bottom of my blog is Riley, our terrier.

    I think what teachers can do about this cavalcade of misinformation is to remain informed and help those that need some accurate information.  I find that many stakeholders still view the new standards as curriculum, which they are clearly not.  I do my best to explain the difference between curriculum and standards and point out that school districts will maintain control over curriculum.

    • CristinaMFernandez

      My DIVA dog does not take kindly to being called a “Sasquatch”

      Rob,

      Teachers ‘in the know’ definitely need to spread the word to others.  Whether it be parents or community members, it is our job to keep everyone up to date with the most current information.  I just wish that more teachers had easy access to blogs and websites like this one so that they can be as up to date as possible.

      P.S. My chocolate lab’s name is Cocoa and she is divalicious.

  • SandyMerz

    CCSS Easy Set Up Guide

    You know, Rob, this just occured to me reading your post – and maybe something like it exists.  But when you buy a new TV or computer you get a big thick manual and a laminated Easy Set Up Guide that “gets you surfing in minutes.”   Maybe someone should do an Easy Set Up Guide for the CCSS.  Maybe you and me?

    • Rob Kriete

      Sandy-

      Sandy-

      Great idea.  Let’s collaborate on what infiormation it should and should not include.  It must start and end with: The Common Core State Standards are not a curriculum.

  • CristinaMFernandez

    Manual

    I want a copy!!!!

  • Victoria A.

    Common Core

    Political influences continue to play a major part in our Educational system.  The basics however remain the same, we need to teach well and our students need to learn.  I still consider myself new to teaching but in my few years I can tell you this, every year it seems like there is a “new plan” to helping students learn.  How can you see how effective the plan really is when every year there is a new one being implemented.