Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson writes for CNN that while a time to celebrate, graduation season underscores the need for “more work to be done and progress to be made to prepare our graduates – especially Latino students – for the journey ahead.” Noting graduation rates and college-enrollment among Hispanics lag those of their white peers, Gov. Richardson says, “Right now, too many states suffer from an ‘honesty gap’ between state-reported student proficiency levels and how those same students actually scored in English and math on the National Assessment of Educational Progress.” “In 2010, New Mexico took the first step in making sure all students were college and career-ready when it adopted the Common Core State Standards…By raising the bar for our students, we are ensuring that every child has the opportunities he or she deserves…while some naysayers continue to misrepresent the Common Core as a federal takeover of education that won’t help students improve, states such as Kentucky are already seeing improvements.” Gov. Richardson concludes, “With time and persistence, these standards will yield even more results. We can and must continue implementing them so our students are ready to succeed.”
What It Means:
As Gov. Richardson points out, prior to the Common Core the patchwork of education standards allowed states to artificially inflate proficiency scores and other measures of student development, evidenced in Achieve’s recent Honesty Gap analysis. By adopting high, comparable standards of the Common Core and high-quality assessments, most states have taken the first step to addressing this problem. By setting rigorous learning goals for all students regardless of race or where they live, the Common Core will ensure more students will be held to academic benchmarks that fully prepare them for college or a career.