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Common Core State Standards (CCSS)

Carmel Martin Defends Common Core and Common Assessments

Common Core and its aligned assessments have been the target of much misinformation and more than its share of political manipulation. Carmel Martin of Center for American Progress recently pointed out a critical value of the Common Core (one that is often overlooked) in the U.S. News and World Report.
This week, The New York Times published an article arguing that, even under the Common Core, Ohio has different standards for students to be deemed proficient in reading and math than other states like Massachusetts or Illinois. The implication is that the Common Core hasn't solved one problem it was designed to address: varying definitions of student proficiency among states. But one critical point the article misses is that, for the first time in history, it is now possible to immediately and easily compare student performance between states – and it's all because of the Common Core. While The New York Times is right that states have differing labels for each proficiency level, the underlying definitions (technically called "cut scores") of each performance level are the same for all states administering the PARCC and Smarter Balanced tests. As a result, regardless of what states call each level in their public reporting, comparing performance across states is easier than ever.

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