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Common Core Implementation Done Right: A Look at Washoe County
posted by: Melissa | May 28, 2014, 06:42 PM   

Recent reports have highlighted failing efforts to implement the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) around the country.  According to many surveys, teachers are not receiving adequate professional development, materials are poorly prepared, and educators aren’t allowed the time to make the switch.  Despite the trend and growing opposition, one county in Nevada is making headlines for implementing the standards with great success.


Washoe County, Nevada is putting CCSS implementation squarely in the hands of teachers.  While many districts across the nation have hired expensive consultants or additional staff members to handle implementation, Washoe County has showed faith in their teachers and their ability to rise to the challenge.


To execute their vision of teacher empowerment, Washoe County created a special initiative called the Washoe Core Task Project.  Teachers from across the district were called in to work together as they examined the standards, found or created resources, and helped other teachers craft new lessons.  While the project started small with just 18 teachers, today there are over 1,000 educators from across the district participating.


In an effort to keep politics out of the process, the teachers involved read only the standards and neutral research about implementation.  The idea was to let the teachers learn about the standards through unfiltered methods.


Also unique to the Washoe County initiative are the types of resources the district is using.  Forgoing expensive textbooks, the teachers involved in the Task Project look for resources that are from reputable sources, have been vetted to be aligned with the standards, and are available for free.  The resources are available for teachers across the country on their Core Task Project website.


The efforts taken in Washoe County are positive steps for teacher leadership and professionalism. Projects like these show that when teachers are given the opportunity, they will step up to the plate when dealing with these challenging issues.


Comments (1)Add Comment
Teacher 1st grade
written by F. Edison. Washoe County Schools, June 03, 2014

Wow I guess we got it right!!'

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