In New Hampshire local school boards choose what standards to adopt, even though ultimately all schools are accountable to the same standardized test, based on the same standards. So last October, after a series of heated Manchester school board meetings, board members voted to create the Manchester Academic Standards. The idea was to take the Common Core – a set of yearly goalposts for K through 12 students – and make them even more rigorous.
Ever since then, a group of sixty-five Math and English teachers from various grade levels have been meeting monthly to make that happen.
“We’ve looked at standards from Alaska, we’ve looked at standards from Indiana, we’ve looked at standards from Massachusetts just to name a few,” says Lesley Fallu, before being interrupted by an announcement over the school’s PA system. Fallu teaches math at Central High School, and is one of four Manchester teachers who the district provided to talk about that work. “When we look at the standards that we feel we want to include, we’re not finding a great deal of difference in what we’re already doing.”
This was a basic theme from these teachers: yes, they are changing things, but in general, there’s not that much that needs changing.
“They’re just organized a different way,” says Gina Bell, a middle school math teacher, who notes the Common Core didn’t start from scratch, but was built on what its creators considered best practices, “maybe less language, maybe certain topics are within different grade levels, but this is not magic.”
go here to listen and read the full report:Few Changes Thus Far In Manchester Common Core Rewrite, Critics and Proponents Unmoved | New Hampshire Public Radio.