The three-month online comment period about Mississippi College and Career Ready Standards, which are based on Common Core, ended this week. According to the state department of education, nearly 1,400 people responded. Almost half were teachers. Parents, administrators, professors and business leaders also weighed-in. Chief Academic Officer Kim Benton says more than 90 percent like the academic standards.
"When an individual would indicate a disagreement, it was around the placement perhaps of that standard, which grade level was most appropriate. If there was some clarifying language that needed to be added, but not one respondent indicated that a standard needed to be removed," said Benton.
Recommendations for changes centered around Kindergarten English and Algebra I. Benton says for example, it could be that someone believes a particular book is more appropriate for a first grader than a kindergartener. In math, some components of Algebra I might make sense teaching at another grade level. Kelly Riley is with Mississippi Professional Educators.
"I think one of the strongest aspects of the forum was that anyone who was critical of a standard had to give a research-based reason," said Riley
Riley says it was criticisms about the academic standards that led to creating the online comment forum, where Mississippians could review them one by one. Monday a 60 member team comprised of educators and experts in English and math will begin culling through more than 8,000 comments. Final recommendations will be submitted to the board of education in December.