February CCSS Updates from Education Week

Hi, Everyone! Since Education Week continues to provide excellent, in-depth coverage of the Common Core State Standards roll-out, this week we wanted to share a few highlights from their recent headlines.

Feature #1: Florida Asking for Public Comment on ELP Standards

Lesli Maxwell reports on her Learning the Language blog that Florida is soliciting public feedback on two different sets of English Language Proficiency (ELP) standards through March 11, 2014. They are:

  • ELPA21, an initiative led by the Council of Chief State School Officers
  • WIDA (short for World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment)

Both consortia have aligned their standards to the Common Core and have received federal grants to develop corresponding assessments as well.

Lesli provides more background on the national picture of ELP standards in her post, as well as where Florida fits into that picture as the state with the third-largest population of ELLs in the country.

Feature #2: Teacher Roundtable on Common Core

Teaching Ahead is an interactive project from Education Week Teacher and the Center for Teaching Quality.  Each month, selected panelists respond to questions around educational policy and practice.

A recent post features the following question, which acknowledges the tremendous pressure teachers are under with the new standards:

As schools adapt to Common Core, what should be taken off teachers' plates?

The featured educators, who teach elementary, middle, and high school, focus on issues that we have covered on the blog from an ELL point of view, such as shared planning time and collaboration, assessment, and teacher evaluation.

Although this set of responses doesn't address ELL issues,  it is definitely an important question to ask ELL educators as well, particularly in thinking about the role of ESL and bilingual specialists in the Common Core and the opportunity to re-shape that role with these changes around the new standards.

How would you answer this question from your ELL perspective?

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