Common Core Science Standards Get Low Marks From Parents, Teachers


Common Core is a hot-button issue in North Dakota, sparking much debate. Superintendent of Public Schools Kirsten Baesler, elected to her position in 2012, has been an outspoken proponent of the standards. Some might even argue that her office has been a bit too vigorous in defense of the standards after Department of Public Instruction spokesman Dale Wetzel was caught using an anonymous email to bash anti-Common Core activist Duke Pesta.

But how do parents and teachers feel about the situation?

I was actually surprised to find out that the Department of Public Instruction has been surveying parents, teachers and other education stakeholders to get their reactions to Common Core. The most recent survey, begun in April and completed in June, focused specifically on the scientific standards.

The reaction from those surveyed – about 47 percent of respondents were parents and about 35 percent were teachers – was pretty negative.

You can read the entire survey, along comments from respondents, below. But this graph – which breaks down responses by parents, teachers, etc. – well over 50 percent of respondents rating the Common Core science standards as “poor.”

Strong pluralities of respondents also disagreed with the idea that the standards are “clear,” that they’re appropriately rigorous, and that the number of standards per grade are reasonable for a school year or course.

That’s pretty ugly for Common Core supporters.

In 2011, before Baesler was elected, DPI put out a request for public comment for the math and language arts standards, but I can’t find those results on the DPI website.

I’ve put in a request for those results to Superintendent Baesler, as well as her reactions to the results.

Update:  Here is the survey from 2011 for the math and language arts standards. As you can see, much higher ratings for those subject areas, but for what it’s worth that survey was conducted before Common Core became such a heated political issue.


North Dakota Common Core Survey