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College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders
Supporting school leaders in helping all students become college and career-ready and to succeed in post-secondary education and training
Curated by Mel Riddile
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Teaching Text Structures for Non-Fiction Reading - YouTube

This video shows you how to teach students to identify text structures in non-fiction or informational reading. Research shows that when students learn to identify text structures, they understand and retain the material better. To download the graphic organizers shown in this video and read more about the research supporting the explicit teaching of text structures, go to http://www.cultofpedagogy.com/text-st...


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10 Important Tips for Successful Close Reading

December, 2014
Close reading is definitely a "survival skill" particularly in a world drowned in information. Close reading is all about reading differently, it is reading for deep understanding through paying attention to what others would normally oversight. Being a close reader entails focus and dedication to your reading material. It empowers readers to delve deeper into the latent meanings of text searching for cues that make the reading  a totally different experience,  one that resembles the detective work. Close reading is also about critical reading, reading that does not take things at face value but rather investigates for what is hidden between the lines.

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Educators question future progress if state backs away from Common Core - The Hechinger Report

Educators question future progress if state backs away from Common Core - The Hechinger Report | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it

JACKSON, Miss. 


Mississippi Educators Say Tossing Standards Would Threaten Future Progress.

The Hechinger Report (12/7, Skinner, Mader) cites educators “across Mississippi” as saying their “already-lagging state will ‘move backwards’” if Gov. Phil Bryant and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves eliminate Common Core standards and create new ones. Recent remarks by both officials attacking the standards, which Mississippi chose to adopt in 2010, with most other states, “angered” Rhea Williams-Bishop, executive director of the nonprofit Mississippi Center for Education Innovation, who said public education “should not be ‘politicized’ in this way.”

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Thinking Notes: A Strategy to Encourage Close Reading | Teaching Channel

Thinking Notes: A Strategy to Encourage Close Reading | Teaching Channel | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
By making Thinking Notes, or metacognative markers, consistent between students when they are reading, you prepare them for a better discussion of the text. Watch how to use this simple strategy to help your students better understand texts.
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Math Teachers Supporting the Common Core State Standards

"The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) is committed to helping educators interpret and understand the Common Core State Standards. The Council supports educators’ efforts to develop and put in place the associated comprehensive and coherent school, district, and state systems of instruction and assessment. Instruction and assessment that are aligned with these standards must be rooted in and promote principles of access and equity. When properly implemented, the Common State Standards will support all students’ access to, and success in, high-quality mathematics programs. Such programs lead to knowledge of mathematics content and reasoning skills that enable students to apply mathematics effectively in a myriad of careers and in everyday life."

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We Actually Do Have to Teach Everyone

We Actually Do Have to Teach Everyone | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it

"The English Language Arts (ELA) Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for speaking, listening, reading, and writing present a framework that places literacy within content-area learning. These new rigorous expectations for what students know and can do are meant to complement the knowledge demands within a subject area. Accordingly, these standards emphasize a shared responsibility for advancing students’ literacy proficiencies across subject areas. However, improvements in literacy instruction and performance at scale are unlikely without the creation of a strong, visible, transparent common culture of literacy practice. This has proven to be a key challenge in American high schools."

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Teachers Advocate to Alter Class Schedules to Fit Common Core Instruction

Teachers Advocate to Alter Class Schedules to Fit Common Core Instruction | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
In order to fit in Common Core instruction, teachers across the U.S. are advocating to alter or lengthen class schedules in order to help their students.
Mel Riddile's insight:

Educators in Pennsylvania, California, and Delaware "are calling for a restructuring of the school day so that students spend more time in each class. Instead of the typical class period of about 45 minutes, schools are lengthening classes to upwards of 90 minutes to cover all the material and allow teachers to change the way they teach to meet the new requirements," said an article on TheHechingerReport.com. - 

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Schools Teach Common-Core Math to Two Generations

Schools Teach Common-Core Math to Two Generations | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
Through parent math nights, letters home, and videos, schools are providing a quieter counterpoint to media critiques of the math standards.
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What does close reading look like? And how do you get students to read the same text more than once?

What does close reading look like? And how do you get students to read the same text more than once? | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it

3 Go-To Close Reading Strategies

by Abi Frost


"With the shift to Common Core State Standards, there has been lots of talk of “close reading.”  As a reading specialist, my responsibility is to help my students reach toward grade level with their reading skills, which most certainly involves having them read texts closely. But, what does close reading look like? And how do you get a reluctant and struggling adolescent reader to read the same text more than once and pay close attention to the details?  It is quite a challenge, but these go-to strategies have helped me enable my students, across grades 7-12, uncover the multiple meanings of text."

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Speaking Standards: What Students Can Learn from Giving TEDx Talks

Speaking Standards: What Students Can Learn from Giving TEDx Talks | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
Creating a TED talk can be as educational as watching one. Students and teachers are taking up this activity to grow new skills and learn more about themselves.
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Smarter Balanced Assessments: Implications for Iowa School Leaders

Members of the Iowa Department of Education’s Assessment Task Force have recommended that Iowa lawmakers adopt the Smarter Balanced Assessments as Iowa’s new

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How professional development needs to change to help educators succeed with the standards.

How professional development needs to change to help educators succeed with the standards. | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it

The Common Core is now front and center in classrooms across the country, and educators and policymakers are focused on getting implementation right. Education First has released a series of briefing papers and a shortexecutive summary that offer guidance for how professional development needs to change to help educators succeed with the standards. The series:

  • Identifies the new essential elements of professional learning (brief #1);
  • Spotlights three different approaches to how districts have organized themselves to support teachers using these elements (brief #2); and
  • Recommends what policymakers can do to advance high quality Common Core-aligned professional development at scale (brief #3).
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10 Lessons Learned From the Assessment Field Tests

10 Lessons Learned From the Assessment Field Tests | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
Schools and districts that took part in the PARCC and Smarter Balanced trial runs share their experiences to help you prepare for online testing this spring.
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Consortium Begins Common-Core Tests in Some Districts

Consortium Begins Common-Core Tests in Some Districts | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
One multistate testing consortium—the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers—is giving tests this fall to 30,000 secondary students.


Consortium Begins Administration Of First Common Core Exams.

The Education Week (12/10, Gewertz) reports the first common-core standardized tests are “making their debut this month” as some students will be given exam developed by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers this fall to students in several states. Other students will take the exam in the spring, including tests developed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. Currently, 30,000 students will take the exam this month, with more than 5 million expected to take the PARCC exam during the 2014-2015 school year.

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Common Core has state's teacher support

West Virginia Teachers Back New State Standards.

The Charleston (WV) Daily Mail (12/8, Speciale), noting plans by some state lawmakers to “challenge use of the controversial Common Core standards” before West Virginia’s legislature reconvenes next month, reports on teachers’ claims that backtracking would “hinder hard-fought progress in the classroom.” State Sen. Donna Boley (R) said the writing of West Virginia’s Next Generation Content Standards was “outsourced” to organizations funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation – a claim disputed by Teresa Hammond, a state Education Department math and science coordinator who helped retooled the standards. Hammond still remembers going through the standards and vetting each objective. “The old standards were more about what teachers were responsible for doing, and the new ones focus on what children need to understand,” Hammond said.

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PARCC for Parents - A brief presentation to parents

PARCC for Parents - A brief presentation to parents | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
Still confused about what exactly the PARCC test is? This presentation is for you!

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30,000 students in 6 states take first official administration of the Common Core exam this month

30,000 students in 6 states take first official administration of the Common Core exam this month | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
30,000 students in six states are sitting for the first official administration of the exam this month


After years of development and field testing and controversy, the new Common Core test known as PARCC is going prime time. Some 30,000 students in six states are sitting for the first official administration of the exam this month, the vanguard of some 5 million students who will take the PARCC later in the school year.

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Common Core math experts say teachers need to stop using shortcuts and math 'tricks'

Common Core math experts say teachers need to stop using shortcuts and math 'tricks' | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
Think back to your elementary school math classes. Were you told to think of a greater-than sign as Pac-Man or to cross-multiply when dividing fractions? You weren’t alone. Tricks to help kids get the right answers to difficult problems have long been a staple of American math education. But if Common Core supporters have their …
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Common Core has no better alternative

Common Core has no better alternative | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
William Bennett says critics of Common Core have lost perspective of its purpose - to help students excel.
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11 Alternatives to "Round Robin" (and "Popcorn") Reading

11 Alternatives to "Round Robin" (and "Popcorn") Reading | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
Rather than intimidating young readers with ancient pedagogy, encourage and empower them with livelier strategies such as partner reading or the manic Crazy Professor Game.
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Principal on Common Core: Have we failed by not sufficiently educating our communities?

Principal on Common Core: Have we failed by not sufficiently educating our communities? | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it

"Have we failed the general public by not sufficiently educating them on what I believe could be a powerful tool in education that would level the playing field for many students and school systems across the country?  In our hurry to implement, did we not provide enough reasons for stakeholders in government, business and most importantly, parents, so that they would know what the CCSS stood for and could do for their children?

Additionally, have we not responded enough, or placed too much emphasis on specific content related skills, such as close reading?  My guess is that if you don’t know much about CCSS, you’ve probably at least heard someone talk about close reading, or you’ve probably seen the picture of the math test I included above in some type of Facebook or social media feed."

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High graduation rates do not mean students are college-ready

By Raymond Yannuzzi
and Thomas Isekenegbe

New Jersey College Chiefs: Common Core Will Cut Down On Need For Remediation.

In an op-ed in the Philadelphia Inquirer (11/25), Camden County College President Raymond Yannuzzi and Cumberland County College President Thomas Isekenegbe write to congratulate New Jersey teachers for their hard work over the past four years to implement the Common Core Standards and the associated PARCC test. The writers lament the heavy need for remediation for students who arrive at college unprepared for the academic rigors, and assert that the Common Core will help to reduce this need.

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Principal: 'I have asked my staff to focus on two things this year: equity and alignment to the Common Core standards.'

Principal: 'I have asked my staff to focus on two things this year: equity and alignment to the Common Core standards.' | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it

"I have asked my staff to focus on two things this year: equity in the classroom and deepened alignment to the Common Core standards."


"The “trick” in the 2014-2015 school year is for our school to understand that the adopted standards inform an aspect of our students experience of their educational path, but that the whole journey has to be devised, created, and implemented by our team. We could make that journey single-minded and not embrace the diversity within our community or we can make that journey a robust one; one that pauses for clarity, embraces difficult conversations, and encourages the development of cultural competencies in all of our community members."

Mel Riddile's insight:

Principal: "I have learned the most difficult thing to do as a leader is shift mindsets. I am charged with shifting our staff’s mindset"

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Nancy J. Herr's curator insight, November 24, 2014 11:49 AM

Practitioner's account of the challenges he faces and how he perceives changing mind sets 

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Math Teacher Prep: Transformed In Light of Common Core

Math Teacher Prep: Transformed In Light of Common Core | College and Career-Ready Standards for School Leaders | Scoop.it
A unique partnership of education schools is exploring ways to adapt secondary-math training programs to the new math standards.
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