Common Core State Standards
District 90 is preparing for one of the most significant educational changes to occur in education in recent decades: the Common Core State Standards Initiative, the first successful effort to align learning standards on a national level. Illinois and 45 other states either have adopted or are making plans to adopt the Common Core Standards to replace their state standards, which can vary widely. The overarching vision of the initiative is to ensure that U.S. students are twenty-first century learners who are thoroughly prepared for college, careers, and a globally competitive society.
Developed collaboratively by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, the Common Core emphasizes English/language arts and math, as well as the integration of technology into instruction and learning. Additionally, far more nonfiction/informational reading will be required, allowing greater integration of literacy with social studies and science.
Common Core Standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that young people need for success in college and careers. The standards are fewer in number than typical state standards, but much broader and deeper. The goals are focused and coherent, and set high expectations for all students.
In many cases, students will be expected to achieve learning goals earlier than they currently do. For instance, some language arts skills now learned in first grade will be part of the Common Core kindergarten standards. The goal is to surpass even the most stringent state standards and create uniform learning expectations for all students, no matter where they live. Assessment based on the new standards begins in 2014 and is expected to replace the Illinois Standards Achievement Tests (ISATs).
District 90 has long anticipated the shift to the Common Core. Staff development for the past year has focused on developing deep understanding of the standards and making any adjustments necessary to bring current curricula into alignment with the new standards. District 90 students will be well prepared for implementation of Common Core–based assessments in 2014.
For more information about how Common Core is being integrated in District 90, see our Fact Sheet.