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February 17, 2014

In Our Opinion: Let's fix Common Core, not fight over it

“Too little, too late” was how Gov. Andrew Cuomo characterized the changes proposed to the state’s implementation of the Common Core curriculum. 

“There is a difference between remedying the system for students and parents and using this situation as yet another excuse to stop the teacher evaluation process,” Cuomo said in a statement issued last week after the state Board of Regents proposed delaying more rigorous graduation requirements and letting teachers off the hook for low test scores.

Cuomo went further, saying that the board’s recommendations “are another in a series of missteps by the Board of Regents that suggests the time has come to seriously reexamine its capacity and performance.”

So if you thought the debate over Common Core couldn’t get any more fever-pitched, think again. 

“Too little, too late” these recommendations may indeed be, but they may also help local schools cope with what has been a hastily rolled-out and poorly communicated set of changes. 

If nothing else, it shows us all that the Board of Regents is done turning a blind eye to the obvious flaws in how the state has chosen to implement the Common Core State Standards. 

“It’s good to feel they are listening, and will give us the time to do it right,” Franklin Central School Superintendent Gordon Daniels said Wednesday. 

Meanwhile, the governor has taken the “Fine, I’ll do it myself” approach, appointing his own panel to look into ways to improve the system. 

In theory, this should be an opportunity for the state to hit the pause button and take into account “the concerns expressed at the hearings and forums,” as Tisch said Monday, regarding “the urgency of our work, and the unevenness of implementation.”

Instead, it looks a lot like it’s just going to be another opportunity for the folks in Albany to squabble at each other.

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