Md. Joins 49 States in Common Core State Standards Initiative - Southern Maryland Headline News

Md. Joins 49 States in Common Core State Standards Initiative

National Effort Will Develop Common English, Math Standards

BALTIMORE (June 2, 2009) - Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley and State Superintendent of Schools Nancy S. Grasmick Monday joined the Common Core State Standards Initiative, a state-led effort to develop common English and mathematics standards for the nation.

The Common Core Standards Initiative is being jointly led by the National Governor's Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers. Forty-nine states and territories have joined in the process.

By signing on to this initiative, Governor O'Malley and Dr. Grasmick join their colleagues across the country in the development of common K-12 standards that are research-based, aligned with college and work expectations, and internationally benchmarked.

"Maryland has a long history of high educational standards, which have helped our State to be recognized as the number one-ranked system in the nation," Governor O'Malley said. "At the same time, our schools and our students must compete globally, and we must continue to raise expectations."

For Maryland, the Common Core State Standards will be a logical next step in providing a set of standards for our state's schools that builds on work the state has done over the last decade. Achieve, one of the key groups leading this effort at the national level, has worked with Maryland extensively through the American Diploma Project, as well as through numerous curriculum reviews and revisions.

"This effort will set a high standard for all of our students, and will level the playing field with students in other states and across the globe," said Dr. Grasmick. "It dovetails with our long-standing work on the American Diploma Project, and we are excited that other states have joined this grassroots effort to strengthen standards."

As part of the national reform effort, Governor O'Malley has called for a longitudinal tracking system, which will follow students throughout elementary, middle, and high school and into college and beyond. MSDE last year began providing each student with an identifying number that will be used for a robust database of education information.

The National Governors Association's Center for Best Practices and the Council of Chief State School Officers will coordinate the process of developing the new core standards. The organizations will create an expert validation committee to provide an independent review of the common core state standards, as well as the grade-by-grade standards.

Among states, only Alaska, Missouri, South Carolina, and Texas have not joined the common core initiative.

Source: Maryland State Dept. of Education

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