The state of Kentucky, the earliest adopter of the Common Core education standards, has been a point of contention among other states looking to implement the Common Core. Kentucky is in its fourth year since implementing the Core Standards, and has experienced far less pushback from teacher’s unions than in other areas of the country since implementation.
Governor Steve Beshear states, “At the end of the day, we put our political hatreds aside. It’s going to be good for our kids and make us more competitive.”
Since adoption of the standards, students in Kentucky are noticing more project-based work and administrators and teachers share that the standards have become the status quo. While improvement on test scores was slow at first, standardized test scores have begun to pick up after the system has had a few years grow and be fully implemented. Proficiency levels of the tests haven’t quite reached the benchmarks of previous tests, but are heading in the right direction. College and career readiness has increased from 54% to 63%, and fewer schools are categorized as needing improvement.
“It takes about five years for teachers to make the shift and for kids to catch up. We’re just starting to see the gains from higher standards,” said Kentucky’s education commissioner, Terry Holliday.
One of the largest statistical jumps for students in Kentucky comes in the form of high-school graduation rates, which have jumped up to 87% and top the national average. This is an increase of roughly 15% since the standards were put in place.
There is still a long way to go for states that are newly adopting the Common Core Standards, but progress is being made. Based on the success we’ve seen in Kentucky, we can expect to see similar results in states across the country that are taking the necessary steps to increase academic standards.
Source: Wall Street Journal