Archives for December 2009

Speak Out: What's Your Instructional Dream Item?

The Surprised Onion Man by flickr user smithco.

The Surprised Onion Man by flickr user smithco.

For this Speak Out, The CEA Blog would like its readers to put on their thinking caps.

Imagine—you’ve returned to school after a long and restful winter break. You open your door, and there’s a surprise. In the center of your room is a cardboard box of indeterminate size.

On the box, there’s a typed card that reads:

“This is what you had said you needed to improve instruction with your students. This is the instructional dream item you had always said you wanted to help you educate your students.”

What instructional dream item would you like to return to in your classroom after winter break that would help you improve your students’ achievement?

Speak Out: Common Math and English Standards

"Teach" by flickr user emtboy9.

"Teach" by flickr user emtboy9.

Over the past year, the Council of Chief State School Officers and the National Governors Association have been overseeing a national push for common academic standards. The Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI) released a draft version of college and career readiness standards for math and English/language arts earlier in the fall.

CCSSI is expected to release K-12 grade-level standards for English language arts and math in early 2010. A total of 48 states have agreed to adopt the entire package of standards, including Ohio. Only Alaska and Texas have not signed on to the Common Core Initiative.

While CCSSI has working on their grade-level standards, the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) has been simultaneously revising the state’s academic standards. The new state budget directs the State Board of Education to adopt revised academic standards for English language arts, math, science, and social studies by June 30, 2010.

Ohio Supt. Deborah Delisle has gone on record as supporting more rigorous academic standards for the state’s students. The biggest challenge facing the state’s efforts to incorporate the national standards package into its own standards revision efforts is timing. Due to CCSSI’s planned release of the national standards in early 2010, ODE may have to ask state legislators to extend the academic standards revision deadline.

In your opinion as an education professional, what effect will adopting national English language arts and math academic standards have on teaching and learning in the Columbus City Schools?