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Board Focuses On Common Core

Supervisor of Mathematics Linda Esposito and Supervisor of ELA, Reading and Library Media Valerie Vacchio presented the Common Core Learning Standards plan at last Tuesday night’s school board meeting. The plan calls for the full implementation of Common Core testing in these subject areas at the High School level by the 2016-17 school year.

“Our (K-12) goals in ELA and mathematics is to increase rigor, relevance and intellectual engagement, maintain high expectations for each and every student and adapt and align our curriculum,” said Esposito.

As of 2012-13, in grades K-8, Common Core testing is already in place in the areas of Math and ELA.

At the high school level, the Common Core English Regents exam will be given to students starting in the 2015-16 school year. The Common Core Learning Standards Geometry exam will be given to students in 2015-16 replacing the Geometry Regents exam and the Algebra2/Trigonometry Common Core exam will replace the Algebra2/Trigonometry Regents starting in 2016-17.

Vacchio said that the Common Core Learning Standards will be different from traditional ELA learning methods in multiple areas.

“With the Common Core there will be more of a balance with non-fiction and literacy text as opposed to an emphasis on fiction/literacy,” said Vacchio. “There will also be more focus on source based writing, which is writing about text using evidence instead of a focus on narrative writing.”

Another area which will be different is reading and writing that is taught by all content area teachers as opposed to being taught primarily by ELA teachers.

In mathematics, the main focus of the Common Core, will be to help students learn more about less and give them real world examples to help them better understand concepts.

“The traditional way of learning was having students learn less about more and giving them real world applications that permit skill practice,” said Esposito.

Students will also use different methods to solve an equation as opposed to using one algorithm and they must also explain how they arrived at their answers.

“It will be a whole different way of learning.”

Resources used for Common Core Learning Standards include the Go Math Program in grades K-6 and aligned textbooks for math courses.

The next board meeting will take place this Tuesday in the high school library at 8 p.m. At this meeting the budget will be adopted.