Development of the Common Core State Standards

In 2008, Achieve, the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA), and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) jointly released, "Benchmarking for Success: Ensuring U.S. Students Receive a World-Class Education". This report called for the development of a set of rigorous, common standards that would be internationally benchmarked and aligned to the needs of colleges and careers.  Shortly thereafter, NGA and CCSSO acted on this recommendation after a gathering of governors and state chiefs indicated there was broad interest in developing standards that would prepare students for college and career and improve U.S. students’ ability to compete globally. As a result, in 48 states and territories governors, state board of education chairs, and state school chiefs signed an MOU committing their state to participating in the voluntary, state-led process of developing the new standards (though the MOU did not commit the state or territory to adopting them). On June 2, 2012, NGA and CCSSO released the final Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English language arts (ELA) and mathematics (math).

The development of the standards was partially guided by an interest on the part of governors ,chiefs, and state boards to create state standards that were common and could therefore be used to compare student performance across states, something not previously possible with the statewide assessments administered by each state. It was believed that the CCSS represented an opportunity to create economies of scale because states could work collaboratively to create and then share resources related to the CCSS. The idea that all students, regardless of where they lived, would be taught using a curriculum based on college- and career-ready standards and then be assessed on those standards using common assessments was appealing largely because governors, chiefs, and state board members believed that the lack of such standards put students at both an economic and educational disadvantage.

The CCSS indicate what is expected of students at each grade level and advocate teaching core concepts beginning in kindergarten.

Development of the CCSS was a process that involved many stakeholders, including academics, researchers, teachers, business leaders, higher education officials, and the public. The CCSS are based on research and were thoroughly vetted by a host of educators. The CCSS indicate what is expected of students at each grade level and advocate teaching core concepts beginning in kindergarten.

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