HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Last year, South Carolina dropped out of Common Core and Governor Nikki Haley signed the bill to say the state needed to adopt new standards by the 2015-2016 school year.
The South Carolina College and Career Readiness Standards are to encourage critical thinking, team work, and problem solving. The new standards were created by a committee made up of educators, business partners, and community members. According to state documents, the goal is to give students the skills needed for success in a future career path of either further education or the workforce.
The standards were created by a group partnership. The committee was made up of educators, business partners, and community members. They came up with the new South Carolina College and Career Readiness Standards. The panel started the whole process by reviewing what students who graduate from South Carolina's public education system should demonstrate.
The panel came up with standards for mathematics and English, and posted them online last November so that people could send in feedback. Over 1,600 reviews were sent in. The panel went through those, tweaked the standards, and this is what they came up with. The profile is divided up into three categories: world class knowledge, world class skills, and life and career characteristics.
Over the summer, the Horry County Schools content curriculum development team went over all the new requirements given by the state and then figured out what needed to be tweaked with the existing curriculum to make sure students would meet the new requirements at the end of the year.
Since Friday, Horry County teachers have been going through development days to make sure everyone is on the same page. The group events also allow time to brainstorm new ideas on how to make it interactive and enjoyable.
"There are digital resources going on for different rotations," says Becky Hinson, the HCS secondary learning specialist for mathematics. "We have screen casting for teachers. Things that teachers can take back and use so that they can have things that students can watch at home. And it's like the teacher is still there in a sense, even though they're not in school."
Remember, since the tests won't be the same this year as last year, the test scores cannot be fairly compared.
Some of the biggest changes your kids will notice will be in math and English. For math, they have some new courses now. For example, Foundations in Algebra and Intermediate Algebra are new, and that's because the Math for Technology classes are being phased out. The biggest goal in math with these standards is for students to learn to balance mathematical concepts and skills.
Some of the other main changes will be with new inquiry standards with high school English. Inquiry standards covers a learning concept that through questions generated by a student's own interests, curiosity, and experience, the student will find the subject more meaningful.
To help get your kid acclimated to these new standards, teachers are encouraging parents to stay engaged with your kids.
"Continue reading with their students," encourages Kelly Johnson, the HCS high school learning specialist. "Continue asking questions, inquiry-based questions. Continue working with their students to ensure academic success. This is an enforcement and encouraging, making sure they're college and career ready."
The specialists believe these standards will stick around for a while. There will be a review of the curriculum standards in 5 years.