Common Core Standards are being implemented into classrooms


Maria Lang-Gavidia speaks at a CCSS meeting to educate parents.

Alex Lay, Staff Writer

Common Core State Standards (CCSS) will soon be implemented into all schools within the Belmont-Redwood Shores School District (BRSSD) and the Sequoia Union High School District (SUHSD), as explained during a parent education night at Ralston Middle School on Nov. 18.

CCSS is a system that will be implemented across many aspects of academics, especially English and math. The new standards will not affect the advanced level of classes or how students are placed into classes.

Maria Lang-Gavidia speaks at a CCSS meeting to educate parents.
Maria Lang-Gavidia speaks at a CCSS meeting to educate parents.

“The CCSS is a worthwhile reform that we need to entrench in the district,” said School Board Member Chuck Velschow.

The grading system will be based on the student’s ability to think about a problem, not the student’s ability to memorize an equation.

The new system will not only be a change for the students, but also the teachers, who will have to learn how to use new methods in their classrooms.

“Teachers are attending professional classes to learn how to teach the students through CCSS methods,” said teacher Tracy Sola.

The teachers have to learn just as much as the students in order to complete the successful transition to this system.

“The spirit of CCSS is not what students learn, it’s how they learn. Perseverance will be a key quality that will be encouraged by teachers as they begin to teach using the new methods. Students will need to learn how to use appropriate tools, attend to precision, use structure, and find regularity in reason in the CCSS process,” said Sola.

The changes made in the new system will provide students with a very different classroom experience.

“Inside the classroom, everything will get a lot more complicated,” said teacher Mary Natoli.

“New ways of learning will be implemented into the English classroom including increases in technology, reading, and writing. Similar increases will occur in other classes, as well as my own,” said Natoli.

Many teachers are very accepting of the new system and will happily include the new ways of teaching into their curriculum.

“Delivering the message of CCSS to teachers makes their eyes sparkle. The new system can be compared to getting on a rollercoaster ride; it can be kind of scary and really exciting all at the same time,” said Redwood Shores Elementary School Principal Robert Sherman.

The CCSS will be field tested in 2013-2014 and officially implemented into the school system in 2016.

The old standards only tested a student’s ability to remember a certain topic, and the new testing will test a student’s ability to think and comprehend.

The system of CCSS will be a great change for many students and teachers alike, yet many believe it will be a change for the better.

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