Common Core state standards were discussed at the West Hempstead Board of Education monthly business meeting Tuesday night at West Hempstead High School.
In his report to the board, Superintendent of Schools John J. Hogan outlined the program by explaining what it aims to achieve and how it will affect the current state of the curriculum.
The goal of the program is to prepare students for college and career opportunities by moving away from the more traditional "stand up and lecture method," and toward a more interactive model that places the "burden of learning" on the students, according to Hogan.
“How often are you asking why and how as compared with how often are you asking what and where, because there is a difference in the quality of those answers,” Hogan said.
"The more that they are thinking analytically and the more that they need to stop and think about what an answer should be, the better they are in terms of developing their own learning and how their own brains work," he added.
From K-12, teachers across all subjects will become teachers of literacy. The Common Core will bring changes to the New York State ELA and mathematics exams, while redesigning the state’s assessment program.
Next month, West Hempstead students in grades 3-8 will take Common Core state assessments in ELA and mathematics. All schools in the West Hempstead School District are expected to implement the Common Core for the 2013-14 school year.
Hogan stressed to the board and those in attendance that the Common Core is a new program with new exams. Due to the unfamiliarity of the tests, the state expects students’ scores to drop 10 to 30 percent on the first set of exams.
Currently, 46 states and Washington D.C. have adopted the Common Core.
At the end of his presentation, Hogan notified the attendees that an updated version of the proposed budget will be presented on April 2 at the board’s budget workshop meeting at 8 p.m. in the high school video conference room.
Hogan also noted that the budget vote is on May 21 and not May 14, as it was incorrectly printed on the school calendar.