It is a fact that not too many folks can argue with: the children are our future. Much as we all did, life for these children really takes shape in their education. While the methods used have changed, and technology has shaped the way our lives work day-to-day, kids still need to head to school and get some kind of education.
A move in the nation is to establish a series of goals and expectations that are being called a “Common Core.” The goal is to make sure that students are prepared for college and post-high school education.
According to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education: The Missouri Learning Standards define the knowledge and skills students need to succeed in college, other postsecondary training and careers. The standards include the Common Core State Standards, a set of academic expectations for English language arts and mathematics.
The Common Core State Standards were created through a state-led initiative and have been adopted by more than forty states, including Missouri. Parents, teachers, education organizations and businesses support the implementation of the Standards.
“The Common Core Standards provide clear expectations for students, teachers, and administrators by listing grade-level skills in English Language Arts and math,” said Marceline R-5 Superintendent Gabe Edgar. “The CCSS do not fully depart from previous learning standards (Missouri’s GLEs and CLEs). Instead, they simply increase expectations in an attempt to ensure students graduate ready with the knowledge and skills necessary for post-high school environments.”
A long-time educator, and now a long-time legislator, Rep. Mike Lair spoke about the Common Core as well.
“It really is fairly complicated due to the different groups involved,” began Rep. Lair. “When these issues come up, we talk about the aluminum hat brigade. These are the ones who think the federal government is looking to standardize every aspect of our lives. That may be true in other areas, but that is not the case with Common Core.”
Lair continued: “For those who have taught, the grade level expectation, called a GLE, is a benchmark to say that this child in this grade should be able to do these things. This is a common set of GLE’s. There is nothing secret about this, nothing sinister. The groups against this aren’t usually educated.”
Lair chairs the education committee in the Missouri Legislature, and has a large hand in the education of Missouri’s students.