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Anchorage School Board approves plan to follow national education standards

Board approves plan to follow national education standards Adoption of Common Core standards will spur curriculum realignment

The Anchorage School Board approved and adopted the Common Core State Standards at its meeting last Thursday night. The district will now begin a curriculum realignment process, within the current budget limits, in order to ensure effective implementation of these standards.

The standards are a set of rigorous, evidence-based standards that are clear, consistent and aligned with college and career expectations. The Common Core standards aim to do to the following:

  • Ensure that all students, no matter where they live, are prepared for success in postsecondary education and the workforce—an issue that is critically important for a transient community like Anchorage.
  • Ensure that students are receiving a high quality education consistently from school to school and state to state.
  • Capitalize on assessment items and curriculum material developed to match the Common Core standards, greatly improving the scope and quality of assessment and curriculum materials.
  • Provide the ability to compare the performance of ASD students to students in other states and the nation.

The district began work on the Common Core standards in 2008 with other large urban school districts nationwide. These standards have been adopted by 45 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The state of Alaska has not adopted the Common Core standards.

"The Common Core standards set forth what kids should know and be able to do in each grade for language arts and reading," said Superintendent Carol Comeau. "Our focus remains on how to make curriculum relevant and reach every student."

Board President Gretchen Guess said, "By adopting the Common Core State Standards, we've drawn a clear line in sand of where we're going, what we're doing and what our expectations are. We're focusing the district."

The Common Core standards are available at www.corestandards.org.

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