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Jonah’s Thoughts on the Common Core and the Drop in Proficiency Scores


Today, we heard from the New York State Education Department that, due to the new Common Core –aligned tests, student scores have dropped. 

To us, this makes a lot of sense. Why? 

Because as Jonah Edelman, Stand’s CEO and Co-Founder, explains, “We haven’t been honest with our kids and families. Students need to be on track, not just be told they’re on track.  The assessments based on previous standards were not accurate indicators of college and career-readiness.”   

 “A drop like this would be cause for concern under normal circumstances, but this drop is on par with what was expected after implementing Common Core across the states,” Jonah says. “Stand has been backing the new Common Core State Standards because they increase rigor and prepare students with the knowledge and skills they truly need for college and career training. And the tests associated with Common Core accurately assess these skills. Up until the implementation of Common Core, states were using varied standards that were not getting students ready for college. In fact, of ACT-tested students in 2012, only 25% were ready for college-level work. Using subpar standards is a disservice to students across our nation.”

Edelman continued to explain that while there may be initial test score drops in the first few years of implementation, states must move forward with the new standards.  “Students will adjust to the rigor, and will ultimately be far more prepared for college and career.”

“How do we know they’ll work? We know it because they are internationally benchmarked using the best standards from across our nation and from high performing countries.”

Edelman cited proof of gains in student proficiency on the ground with examples coming out of DC and Kentucky, and in states like Tennessee students are seeing score gains bigger than ever before in the state’s history. 

Edelman argues that gains like those in DC, Kentucky and Tennessee are exactly why we need to effectively implement Common Core.

“Test score drops will happen as students adjust to the rigor, but with properly aligned standards, adjusted curriculum, increased teacher professional development and appropriate support for the students who need it the most, we can expect to see such gains across the nation.” 


A closer look at some of New York's released Grades 3-8 Common Core math test questions: