Teachers grade Common Core: C+ and room for improvement
A survey of teachers on Common Core education standards showed mixed results. Half of teachers surveyed think Common Core standards help students with critical thinking, but their enthusiasm has waned.
By Stacy Teicher Khadaroo
OCTOBER 3, 2014
"Teachers feel more prepared to teach the Common Core State
Standards and are already starting to see students improve their critical
thinking skills. But the enthusiasm has dipped since last year, and only half
say the new standards will be positive for most students.
Those are some key findings in a survey of 1,676 K-12 teachers in the 43
states that have adopted Common Core, released by Scholastic and the Bill
& Melinda Gates Foundation...
The survey found clear progress on implementation of the standards.
Twenty-five percent of teachers said implementation is complete in their
schools, and another 39 percent said it is mostly complete (up from 13
and 33 percent last year).
In schools where implementation was
fully complete in 2013-14, most teachers agreed somewhat (62 percent) or
strongly (24 percent) that implementation was going well.
percent of teachers said they feel somewhat or very prepared to teach
the new standards, up from 71 percent a year ago.
In schools where
implementation is under way or complete, 53 percent of teachers said
students have already improved their ability to think critically, use
reasoning skills, and present their ideas based on evidence; 50 percent
said students are better able to comprehend informational texts; and 46
percent said students are working more collaboratively with peers.
the percentage who said they are enthusiastic about the standards
declined from 73 percent to 68 percent. And the percentage who said
implementation is or will be challenging has climbed from 73 percent to
Teachers are split on the impact on students: 48
percent said Common Core will be positive for most students, 17 percent
said they will be negative, and the remainder said they won’t make much
difference. Last year, 57 percent said the standards would be positive
and only 8 percent said they would be negative.
concerned with what will happen to students who have the longest road to
travel to meet the standards and how student scores on new assessments
will affect teacher evaluations.
But “the teachers who were more
negative were also less involved with implementing the Common Core,” and
tended to get information more from the media than from their own
districts, says Margery Mayer, president of Scholastic Education. The
survey findings suggest that when it comes to Common Core
implementation, “the more you do it, the more you love it,” she says.