"You can always count on the teachers; they help you whenever you need it. "
Grant, 4th Grade
North Carolina has been a pioneer over the past 15 years when it comes to the area of educational reform. Over the past five years, North Carolina has been in a transition stage of adopting, creating and implementing a new set of learning standards for all students Kindergarten through twelfth grade in a content areas. The Common Core
and Essential Standards focuses on the most critical knowledge and skills that students need and must have in order to be college and career ready in the 21st century. To be clear, Common Core standards refer to Math and English Language Arts. These standards have been adopted by North Carolina along with 46 other states; the goal of this movement for change is to ensure that the students across America (who all attend the same colleges) are going to college having learned the same set of core skills. Because North Carolina adopted the new standards in ELA and Math, it was decided to develop new standards of the same rigor in all other content areas as well (Social Studies,Science, Physical Education, Health, Foreign Language, Visual and Performing Arts), thus creating the North Carolina Essential Standards. All standards have been written using Revised Bloom's Taxonomy, which raises the level of learning expectations significantly.
The Common Core and Essential Standards were implemented in all public schools across the state staring the 2012-2013 school year. In addition to the new learning objectives, new accountability tests have also been developed and will also be implemented during the 2012-2013 school year. The state assessments now follow a growth model versus a proficiency model.
State Assessments will include:
-Ready End of Grade test in Math and Reading 3rd - 8th Grade
-Ready End of Grade test in Science in 5th and 8th Grade
-Common Exams in Social Studies and Science classes in 4th-12th Grade
(including: Earth and Environmental, Physics, -Chemistry, Civics and
Economics, and World Gistory)
-Ready End of Course test in Algebra 1, English II and Biology
-ACT in grade 10
-PLAN in grade 10
-NC Extend 1 and 2- Alternative Assessments for Students with Exceptional Needs
-Various field tests and special studies (differ each school year)