Controversy surrounds a new set of academic standards for Pennsylvania Public Schools. The new regulations, the ” Common Core ” standards provides a framework of what public school students should be taught at each level. Those opposed, are worried about the cost to the school district and the change to Keystone State Exams.
“You can set academic standards as high as you want but if you don’t have the resources it’s like telling teachers to spin straw into gold like a Rumpelstiltskin Fairy Tale,” says Wythe Keever, Assistant Communications Director, PSEA
Students must pass or they wouldn’t graduate.
“ You could pass the course with an A, but if you don`t pass the test you`re out the door! How many students are going to leave school ?” , says Senator Andy Dinniman (D-Chester/Montgomery)
Those in favor say it’s time for the state to set higher standards ,and students who fail would be given another chance.
“ They’re made to be end of course exams like finals, if students can’t pass them, we’ve allowed a project based assessment for students who don’t test well. The important thing is they learn the content and then we have multiple ways of assessing them,” says Dr. Carolyn Dumaresq , Deputy Secretary of Education
Lawmakers are holding hearings this week to discuss the regulations.