Learning First Alliance Supports Additional Time to Get Common Core Implementation Right

/ 21 August 2014 / Shawna
Anne O'Brien, Learning First Alliance, August 21, 2014

Today, in response to the U.S. Department of Education announcement that states may delay tying teacher evaluation to standardized assessments, the Learning First Alliance (LFA), a partnership of leading education organizations representing more than 10 million parents, educators and policymakers, released the following statement:

“The Learning First Alliance supports the U.S. Department of Education’s decision to allow states to delay tying teacher evaluation to standardized assessments aligned to new standards, including the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).

LFA has long recognized the potential of the CCSS to transform teaching and learning and provide all children with knowledge and skills necessary for success in the global community; we have also long advocated for a transition period that respects the time that good implementation requires prior to attaching high-stakes decisions to aligned assessments. Today’s decision is a good step in the right direction.

The educators who are working hard every day to implement these standards – to ensure that all students have the opportunity to benefit from a higher bar for achievement, regardless of their zip code or family background – deserve and require our support in their efforts. This time is one key aspect of that support. Now we all – federal, state and local policymakers, educators, parents and other critical partners – must use this time effectively, working together to ensure schools have the curricular materials, technology infrastructure, professional learning, time for collaboration and other resources that are necessary to support student learning under these standards. We should look to those states and communities where implementation is going well and learn from their experiences while recognizing that individual implementation plans and materials will and should reflect the needs and priorities of each state, district and school.

It is also critical that we use this time to ensure that educators on the ground, as well as the parents and students who interact with the standards every day, have a significant voice in implementation, including in how assessment and accountability systems will be structured moving forward.

Today’s announcement indicates that the voices of educators, parents and local policymakers are getting through to the federal government. We must continue to work together to get implementation right.”

View the complete press release here.

Several LFA member organizations have also issued responses to this announcement, including AASA, The School Superintendents AssociationAmerican Association of Colleges for Teacher EducationAmerican Federation of Teachers (AFT), Learning ForwardNational Association of Elementary School PrincipalsNational Education Association (NEA) and Parents for Public Schools.