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House Hearing on Common Core Standards

Earlier this week, the House Education and Labor Committee held a hearing, “Improving Our Competitiveness: Common Core Education Standards”, to look at the work being done by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers to develop common math and English standards.

Witnesses included:

  • Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, chair, NGA Education, Early Childhood and Workforce Committee
  • Gene Wilhoit, executive director, Council of Chief State School Officers
  • Doug Kubach, president and CEO, Pearson Assessment and Information
  • Cathy Allen, vice chair, Board of Education at St. Mary’s County Public Schools, Leonardtown, MD

Chairman George Miller (CA-7) began the hearing by lauding the common standards as critical in preparing students for college and careers in the global economy.  Rep. Glenn Thompson (PA-5) also expressed support for voluntary common standards, but cautioned that the Administration’s requirement in the Race to the Top grant that States adopt common standards amounts to mandating adoption because States that do not adopt them will lose out on much needed education funding.

Some of the topics addressed were whether there would be common , or state-by-state, assessments; the opportunity to use online performance based assessments; whether the standards will help students who do not plan to attend a 4 year college, but may go to a community college, get technical training, or go straight to work after high school; and the role of the common standards in preparing a high skilled workforce.

You can access the full text of witness testimony and an archived webcast of the hearing at the committee’s website.

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