In the 2015-2016 school year, Rocklin Unified School District will continue to move toward implementing the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) at all grade levels. These multi-state academic standards, adopted by the State of California, reflect the most significant change in public education in over two decades. It is an exciting shift. In addition to being aligned, across 45 states, the CCSS are focused on preparing students to have the skills and knowledge that will enable them to compete in a 21st century global marketplace.
The CCSS are for all students K-12 in Mathematics and English Language Arts, Literacy in History/Social Studies, and Science and Technical Subjects. College and Career Readiness (CCR) standards anchor the cross-disciplinary literacy expectations that must be met by students to be prepared to enter the college and workforce training programs. CCR standards identify the Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening, and Language skills necessary for students to succeed. As outlined in the CCSS for ELA, students who are College and Career Ready can:
The standards stem from a nationwide initiative to set a clear and consistent progression of learning across all states. These kindergarten through 12th grade standards provide a progression of knowledge and skills that prepare students to graduate from high school and be ready for college and careers. The standards are research-based and internationally benchmarked.
The Rocklin Unified School District is excited about these new standards which will provide rich learning opportunities for our students. Standards define the concepts and skills that every child will learn. Our teachers are being trained and prepared to teach students to meet these new expectations.
Parents may notice the effects of the Common Core State Standards. One example is that, over time, students will be able to read, comprehend and analyze more sophisticated text. A teacher may encourage your child to choose books that are written at a more challenging level. Also, you may notice more frequent writing assignments. Assignments are more likely to include writing within core subjects of science and history/social science. In mathematics, parents may see their students making drawings or models to illustrate or demonstrate their solutions to problems. While the learning of math facts (for instance, “times tables”) is still important, students will spend more time working through a solution to a “real-life” problem rather than repeatedly practicing the same type of problem. (A “real-life” problem might involve designing alternative shapes for a rabbit pen enclosure if given a limited amount of fencing.)
The way we taught students in the past does not sufficiently prepare them for the higher demands of college and careers today and in the future. Your school, and schools throughout the country, are working to improve teaching and learning to ensure that all children will graduate from high school with the skills they need to be successful.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to your child’s teacher. You are an important part of your child’s education. Ask to see a sample of your child’s work or bring a sample with you. Ask the teacher questions like: