In 2014 and 2015, the first tests will be administered to assess how students are measuring up to the Common Core State Standards – new college and career-ready standards that have been adopted by 45 states and three territories. The result of those tests, many educators believe, will be a disaster.
But standards, of course, are one thing. Preparing students to meet them is quite another. School district leaders from across the country say that their states are woefully behind when it comes to preparing students for the Common Core. Many places are not even sure what they should be doing, much less taking steps to do it.
At a time when even innovative school district leaders feel like they are under attack from some for-profit charter schools and virtual institutions, educators worry that poor test scores will be used to accelerate the demise of public education itself, one of the last great democratizing forces in America.