Aside from the usual gripes about text book companies cashing in on Common Core and using it as another excuse to promote agenda as education, some
other problems are emerging with one-size-fits-all standards.
'So the standards are higher, so what our job is is to take the students from where they are, to get them to that point,' Canelli said. 'If the
students have not mastered addition and subtraction, we can’t move them to multiplication and division.'
This is a quote from a discussion of the standards. What this teacher is essentially saying is that the standards are bad because they force the
entire class to move on together or not at all. So, if a few kids in the class have not mastered the current concept, none of them can move on.
When I think back to my own days in school, this would have been enormously frustrating for me. I often mastered things quickly and easily. Imagine
being that kid and now having to go over the same material day after day and not really understanding why. How quickly would you begin to hate school?
How quickly would you begin to not care?
On the flip side, imagine being the kid who can't get it and being forced to go over it again and again. That will get frustrating, too.
Also, imagine that you are a teacher in an inner city school where kids are often well below grade level and being told that these are the standards
for you grade and the things you must teach, and you are being asked to teach them to kids who are far behind enough that they won't be equipped to
pick them up easily or at all. Apparently, there has been no latitude given for kids who have simply been passed up the rungs without having to learn
the material and so are entire grade levels behind. They are expected to learn at grade level like everyone else, and teachers are expected to teach
them that way.
Practice tests are sent home but are useless unless the children own a computer. If they do not have a computer, they do not have the necessary skills
to take an electronic test.
We're also talking about populations that do not have home computers in every home. So when you send home a practice test that assumes you have a home
computer (wasn't the Gates foundation big into making the Common Core?) and you don't have one, how do you do the practice test?
Again it seems to me that Common Core is just a one-size-fits all program that tries to impose a fit from the top. It cannot take every unique
situation adequately into account and doesn't even try. Instead, I guess we're going to break a lot of eggs on our way to a homogenous, one world
I also find it interesting that in most places, the criticism is that Common Core is dumbing down the standards, but many of the quotes here are
complaining that it raises the standards too high. Again, if anything, it illustrates that one-size-fits all isn't always the best approach.
Certainly, if these teachers are coming out of the same type of urban poor situation I taught in, I can sympathize with some of what they are saying.
In order to get some of these kids caught up, allowances and concentrated efforts will have to be made. You can't just stick them in a grade level
program and expect them to perform. They don't have the prior years of knowledge to support it.
edit on 13-1-2014 by ketsuko because: (no