Florida’s public schools have already begun phasing in the newly adopted Common Core State Standards (CCSS) with kindergartners this school year, signaling an end to the FCATs within the next few years for students at all levels.  This news has many parents, educators and students rejoicing; however, others are skeptical and wonder if this isn’t just going to be continued standardized testing under a new acronym.  The only way to find out if students are learning what they’re expected to learn is to test them in some way, so testing will still exist.  However, supporters of the CCSS say these tests will be “tests worth teaching to.”

The CCSS is a K-12 state-led effort (not a government mandate) coordinated by the nation’s leading experts in education and developed in collaboration with teachers and school administrators “to provide a clear and consistent framework to prepare our children for college and the workforce.”  The goal of the CCSS is to raise the bar in education nationwide, making our children better able to compete at the international level and providing consistent benchmarks for all students, regardless of where they live.  Could it really be true that Florida’s public education system may soon no longer have to suffer the burden of being in the lower ranks compared to its counterparts nationwide? 

How could Florida’s parents and educators not want this hope for our children?  Are there other issues within our public schools that will ultimately prevent these new standards from achieving all that they propose?  Check it out for yourself at The Village Square‘s discussion on the topic in our “Get Local” Florida section of our We the Wiki website. Feel free to add to it, too — additional sources, fact checks, even write an op-ed. Remember, the content of our Wiki is made greater by factual, civil, diverse contributions from people like you.  So, go ahead — check it out.  And if you’re a first-time user, be sure to check out the Tools & Tips page, too.  If you have trouble with the site using Internet Explorer, try switching over to Google Chrome, Firefox or Safari.

Then you can switch over to the fully editable Tallahassee Wiki to take a look at the various schools around town and even add a page/info for your favorite school.  Just search the school or type of school you’re looking for to get started (here are our pages on elementary, middle, high, private and charter schools).