Mississippians are using a 90-day public comment period to give feedback on the state's Common Core Education Standards. Education officials say a majority of the comments are positive.
Mississippi's Common Core State Standards have remained controversial since their adoption in 2010. In an effort to bring the standards into a more favorable light, the Mississippi Department of Education opened a 90-day public comment period in June that allows residents to review the standards and suggest changes.
Last week marked the halfway point of that comment period, and officials like Kim Benton from the state education department say the comments have been overwhelmingly positive.
“Almost 92% of the individuals that commented have indicated full approval of the state’s academic standards,” says Benton. “That, I think, gives us a good feel that they are finding and seeing the strengths and the importance within these standards.”
Through the process, participants are being asked to evaluate individual standards by giving them a thumbs up or thumbs down. If they vote something down, participants will be required to give a research-based reason as to why they believe the standard should be changed.
However, some Mississippians believe the process doesn't give opponents of the standards a fair chance to voice their concerns. Brandie Correro is with Mississippi Free -- an anti-Common Core group. She says the comment period does nothing to address the biggest problems that are ASSOCIATED with the standards.
“There are plenty of tentacles attached to it that need to be addressed like teacher and principal evaluations, the push for charters schools, the push for data collection, all this standardized testing, there are plenty of issues that are attached to those things that I can’t comment on a specific standard,” Correro says.
Mississippians will have until September to review the standards by going to http://mississippi.statestandards.com