Monday, June 01, 2009



NGA Center, CCSSO Convene State-led Process to Develop Common English-language arts and
Mathematics Standards

WASHINGTON— The National Governors Association Center for Best
Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)
today released the names of the states and territories that have joined the
Common Core State Standards Initiative: Alabama; Arizona; Arkansas;
California; Colorado; Connecticut; Delaware; District of Columbia; Florida;
Georgia; Hawaii; Idaho; Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Kansas; Kentucky; Louisiana;
Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; Michigan; Minnesota; Mississippi; Montana;
Nebraska; Nevada; New Hampshire; New Jersey; New Mexico; New York; North
Carolina; North Dakota; Ohio; Oklahoma; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Puerto Rico;
Rhode Island; South Dakota; Tennessee; Utah; Vermont; Virgin Islands; Virginia;
Washington; West Virginia; Wisconsin; Wyoming.

In the twenty-six years since the release of A Nation at Risk, states have
made great strides in increasing the academic rigor of education standards.
Yet, America’s children still remain behind other nations in terms of
academic achievement and preparedness to succeed.

By signing on to the common core state standards initiative, governors and state
commissioners of education across the country are committing to joining a
state-led process to develop a common core of state standards in English
language arts and mathematics for grades K-12. These standards will be research
and evidence-based, internationally benchmarked, aligned with college and work
expectations and include rigorous content and skills.

“To maintain America’s competitive edge, we need all of our students to be
prepared and ready to compete with students from around the world,” said NGA
Vice Chair Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas. “Common standards that allow us
to internationally benchmark our students’ performance with other top
countries have the potential to bring about a real and meaningful
transformation of our education system to the benefit of all Americans.”

“As state school chiefs, we have been discussing and building momentum for
state-led, voluntary common standards that are both rigorous and
internationally benchmarked for the past two years.,” stated CCSSO
President and Arkansas Commissioner of Education Ken James.

“The broad level of commitment we have received from states across the
nation for this unprecedented effort is both gratifying and exciting. It
also clearly illustrates that this is an idea whose time has arrived.”

The Common Core State Standards Initiative is being jointly led by the NGA Center
and CCSSO in partnership with Achieve, Inc; ACT and the College Board. It
builds directly on recent efforts of leading organizations and states that have
focused on developing college-and career-ready standards and ensures that these
standards can be internationally benchmarked to top-performing countries around
the world. The goal is to have a common core of state standards that states can
voluntarily adopt. States may choose to include additional standards beyond the
common core as long as the common core represents at least 85 percent of the
state’s standards in English language arts and mathematics.

“Measuring our students against international benchmarks is an important step,” said
Virginia Gov. Timothy Kaine. “Today, we live in a world without borders.
It not only matters how Virginia students compare to those in surrounding
states – it matters how we compete with countries across the

“Only when we agree about what all high school graduates need to be successful will
we be able to tackle the most significant challenge ahead of us: transforming
instruction for every child,” said CCSSO President-Elect and Maine
Education Commissioner Sue Gendron. “Common standards will provide
educators clarity and direction about what all children need to succeed in
college and the workplace and allow states to more readily share best practices
that dramatically improve teaching and learning. Our graduates and frankly, the
future of our economy, cannot wait any longer for our educational practices to
give equal opportunity for success to every student.”

The NGA Center and CCSSO are coordinating the process to develop these standards and have
created an expert validation committee to provide an independent review of the
common core state standards, as well as the grade-by-grade standards. This
committee will be composed of nationally and internationally recognized and
trusted education experts who are neutral to – and independent of –
the process. The college and career ready standards are expected to be
completed in July 2009. The grade-by-grade standards work is expected to be
completed in December 2009.

Founded in 1908, the National Governors Association (NGA) is the collective voice of the
nation’s governors and one of Washington, D.C.’s most respected
public policy organizations. Its members are the governors of the 50 states,
three territories and two commonwealths. NGA provides governors and their
senior staff members with services that range from representing states on Capitol
Hill and before the Administration on key federal issues to developing and
implementing innovative solutions to public policy challenges through the NGA
Center for Best Practices. For more information, visit

The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) is a nonpartisan, nationwide,
nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary
and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department
of Defense Education Activity, and five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO
provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational
issues. The Council seeks member consensus on major educational issues and
expresses their views to civic and professional organizations, federal
agencies, Congress, and the public.

No comments:

Post a Comment