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Corona: Common Core “raises the bar”

Written by Aaron Williams on . Posted in Local

West Baton Rouge Parish Schools Superintendent David Corona said Monday afternoon that he doesn’t expect Common Core Standards to be replaced in Louisiana,

and agrees that they shouldn’t.

Corona said, despite the recent public outcry throughout the state concerning Common Core Standards, that the system is in place to help students throughout the state and nation to “compete globally,” saying that Common Core is “a good thing, overall.”

The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a nationwide education movement that sets more rigorous standards with student-learning benchmarks for each grade.

Common Core is a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit 501 (c) 3 organization, founded in 2007, according to www.commoncore.org.

Louisiana’s Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted to adopt the standards in 2010.

The West Baton Rouge School System began using the standards during the 2012-2013 school year.

Lately, however, the Common Core Standards Initiative has been scrutinized because of tests extreme rigor and overall lack of diversity, as some have argued the program drains initiative from teachers and enforces a "one-size-fits-all" curriculum that ignores cultural differences among classrooms and students according to a March 2013 article in the Washington Post.

In a March 2013 article in the Wall Street Journal, it was stated that conservative groups have assailed the program as a federal "top-down" takeover of state and local education systems.

Corona said that the standardized tests are, in fact, more rigorous, but added that he believes that is a positive thing.

“I think it raises the bar. In every place in history, when the bar has been raised for human beings, human beings have figured out how to achieve it. And I think the same thing is going to happen here, I just think it’s going to take a little time over time.”

He said that he believes issues with Common Core in Louisiana began when Governor Bobby Jindal called Common Core a “federalized curriculum.”

“Common Core standards is not a curriculum, it’s a set of standards,” Corona said. “It’s simply an opportunity to get our students to be able to communicate more effectively both in writing and orally. To be able to think and problem solve, to be able to take a position on an issue and to support that position with fact.”

He said that he has heard rustlings throughout different parishes in the state complaining about the standards and desiring the state’s departure from them, but he said he believes in Common Core.

“It would be a huge mistake for Louisiana to pull out of the effort for Common Core,” he said. “It’s a good thing for us in West Baton Rouge, it’s a good thing for Louisiana, it’s a good thing in the United States.”

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