The Education Week Research Center's third survey of teachers on the Common Core State Standards since 2012 found more are familiar with the standards and a growing portion feels prepared to teach them, but challenges remain.
Education Week reports fewer than one in five teachers “strongly agree” their classroom resources are well-aligned to the standards, and an equally small share strongly agrees professional development on the standards is high-quality — though in 2012, just 9% of teachers were this confident in the alignment of their classroom resources.
While 39% of teachers said they felt “very prepared” to teach to the standards, just 17% reported the same level of readiness to teach English learners and 18% to teach students with disabilities — and only 18% of teachers “strongly agreed” their textbooks and main curricular materials aligned with the Common Core, prompting many to turn to outside resources.
The final version of the Common Core State Standards was released in 2010, following more than a year of development and revision. Many states began implementation in 2012 after they adopted the standards and introduced new assessments soon after. From the beginning it was clear it would take teachers several years to get to know the standards and fully shift instruction to align with them. What has not been clear was whether the standards themselves would outlast this transition period.
One major problem in education is the pace at which schools, districts and states introduce new initiatives to transform teaching and learning. Just as teachers get comfortable with a new reform — and often even before that happens — the next fix is on the table. President-elect Donald Trump is taking office promising to get rid of the Common Core. Many experts believe the standards are here to stay, at least for a while, but districts will have to continue to fight initiative fatigue in their buildings in the years to come.