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Superintendent Dorn Provisionally Adopts
Common Core State Standards

OLYMPIA — July 19, 2010 — State Superintendent Randy Dorn announced today that he is provisionally adopting the Common Core State Standards for English language arts and mathematics.

The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is required to deliver a detailed report on the common core standards in January 2011 to the state Legislature. The report, as outlined in Section 601 of the Engrossed Second Substitute Senate Bill 6696, will include a comparison of common core and current state learning standards, an estimated timeline and the cost to the state and districts to implement them.

According to ESSB 6696, formal adoption and implementation of the new standards may not occur until after the 2011 legislative session, which will provide an opportunity for legislative review.

The common core standards were developed by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers in collaboration with teachers, school administrators and education experts. The goal of the standards is to provide a clear and consistent framework to prepare our nation’s children for college and the workforce.

“The standards clearly articulate the skills and knowledge all kids in Washington need to learn,” Dorn said. “Common standards will also help level the playing field for what’s becoming a more mobile society. Students moving to our state from another state can essentially pick up where they left off.”

Dorn also said common standards will have a positive financial benefit as states will be able to pool their resources for textbooks and assessments.

“Common standards will significantly increase the availability of aligned textbooks and other instructional materials available to teachers,” he said. “And, testing costs will be reduced because we’ll have common assessments – not 50 different states designing and administering 50 different tests.”

In June, Washington submitted its application for the second round of Race to the Top (RTTT) grants, seeking $250 million. It also served as the applicant state for a 31-state consortium bidding for a $160 million RTTT assessment grant.

The U.S. Department of Education, which is expected to announce Race to the Top second-round finalists later this month, encourages states to agree to adopt the common standards in English language arts and math. As a result, adopting the common core standards is a part of the state’s RTTT application.

Washington is one of 48 states, two territories and the District of Columbia that agreed to consider adopting common core standards in 2009. To date, about 25 states have formally adopted the standards, and more are expected to in the coming months.

Through the adoption process, states have the option to add state-specific content standards for up to 15 percent above and beyond the common core standards.

“As we prepare our report to the Legislature, we will seek feedback from educators and stakeholders about the advantages of adding additional state-specific standards,” Dorn said.

Assuming legislative agreement, OSPI plans to begin rolling out the new standards to teachers statewide beginning in the 2012-13 school year. However, they will not be incorporated into state assessments until the 2014-15 school year.



About OSPI

The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is the primary agency charged with overseeing K-12 education in Washington state. Led by State School Superintendent Randy Dorn, OSPI works with the state’s 295 school districts and nine Educational Service Districts to administer basic education programs and implement education reform on behalf of more than one million public school students.

OSPI does not discriminate and provides equal access to its programs and services for all persons without regard to race, color, gender, religion, creed, marital status, national origin, sexual preference/orientation, age, veteran’s status or the presence of any physical, sensory or mental disability.

Nathan Olson
OSPI Communications Manager
(360) 725-6015

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The OSPI Communications Office serves as the central point of contact for local, regional and national media covering K-12 education issues.

Communications Manager
Nathan Olson
(360) 725-6015


   Updated 7/19/2010

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