By Catherine Gewertz | Ed Week
January 6, 2011
Most states plan to revise professional development for teachers by next year to help them teach to the new common standards, but it will take two or more years to complete anticipated changes in curriculum, assessment, and other elements of the K-12 system to adapt to the new learning goals, according to a survey released today.
The survey is the first national snapshot of where states stand in their plans to implement the new standards. It shows that more than 30 states plan changes in the curriculum they teach, how they train and evaluate teachers, and how they size up students’ learning. But few of those changes will be fully realized before 2013.
State feedback was gathered by the Center on Education Policy, a Washington-based research and policy group. Survey responses came from K-12 education officials in 42 states and the District of Columbia in October and November. Thirty-six of the responding states had fully or provisionally adopted the common standards then; as of this week, 44 have done so. Survey respondents also included 11 of the 12 states that won grants under the federal government’s Race to the Top program.
The survey results illustrate “the immensity of the task” of implementing the common standards, said CEP President Jack Jennings.
“It’s going to take a while, and it’s going to be very complicated to make these standards mean anything,” he said. “Yet if states don’t do everything, then they won’t mean what they should mean.”
Change on the Way
Most states plan key changes in their education systems to respond the common-core state standards, but timelines vary.