Chicago Catholic schools preparing for the Common Core #stopcommoncore

Catholic New World -

The Common Core is coming, and Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Chicago will be ready.

In fact, they will be more than ready, and go beyond the Common Core, said Dominican Sister Mary Paul McCaughey, the superintendent of Catholic schools for the archdiocese.

“I’m always just going to call it beyond the core, beyond the core, beyond the core, because that’s the goal,” Sister Mary Paul said.

While there has been some hand-wringing among everyone from pundits to parents about what the Common Core State Standards mean, Sister Mary Paul said, it’s important to remember what the Common Core standards are, and what they aren’t.

What they are is a statement of what students should know and what they should be able to do at various points in their academic careers. What they are not is a curriculum, according to Mary Kearney, associate superintendent of Catholic schools.

“A curriculum includes what is taught, when it is taught, how it is taught and what materials to use,” Kearney wrote in “Going Beyond the Core,” a blog posted Aug. 22 on the Office for Catholic Schools website. “None of these items are included in the Common Core State Standards. For Catholic schools, all of these elements will continue to be determined by diocesan superintendents, principals and teachers working to meet the needs of their students.”

Rather, the Common Core standards, which were developed by hundreds of educators working under the auspices of a consortium of state governors, give schools a way to see if they are measuring up in providing the skills students need.

In any case, Sister Mary Paul said, no one can know how the Common Core will actually work until tests are developed to show how well students measure up.

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