The Legislature ordered changes two years ago amid criticism that the Common Core requirements were part of a federal mandate. The Oklahoman reported (http://bit.ly/22oNEEc) that some are criticizing the new standards, saying they aren’t specific enough.
Standards are a roadmap for teachers who create curriculum, which is made up of multiple lesson plans and resources created by educators.
Some legislators understand the difference between standards and curriculum.
Sen. Ron Sharp, R-Shawnee and a former teacher, questioned whether legislators have the necessary expertise to weigh in and said there was a reason for vagueness.
“We want to give flexibility to teachers,” he told the newspaper.
But some legislators do not understand, and are easily taken in my self-proclaimed out-of-state experts who have their own agendas.
“You would never know these standards were written by Oklahomans for Oklahoma,” professor Sandra Stotsky said. “They could have been written by people on Mars for Martians. There is absolutely nothing in these standards that has an Oklahoma touch.”
Sen. Josh Brecheen, R-Coalgate, said the literacy standards could have included a requirement that students read some of Will Rogers’ works.
As an educator, the idea of using Oklahoma-created literature is excellent, and we plan to use works by Joy Harjo, William Bernhardt, Anna Myers, P.C. Cast, Kristen Cast, and Wilson Rawls, among others, in our classrooms under these new standards. That said, there is still a place in our classrooms for works of authors from other parts of the world, which Oklahoma children will need to know, such as William Golding, Harper Lee, Shakespeare, Homer, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and more.