ERIC Number: ED423267
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Jul
The State of State Standards.
Finn, Chester E., Jr.; Petrilli, Michael J.; Vanourek, Gregg
Fordham Report, v2 n5 Jul 1998
The Fordham Foundation commissioned experts in each of the five core academic subjects (English, history, geography, mathematics, and science) to develop criteria for excellence and apply them to as many state standards as could be obtained. This summary report compiles the numerical scores and letter grades that each state earned in every subject. Policy makers, journalists, and concerned citizens can easily see a complete report card for their state. The report also presents some lessons from these findings. Some states did well in some subjects, but the main conclusion to be drawn from this study is that most of the states have a long way to go before their academic standards will be strong enough to bear the considerable burden now being placed on them. Their present weaknesses are great enough to be a grave threat to standards-based education reform. In every subject, the number of states receiving a "D" or an "F" outnumbered the number receiving an "A" or a "B." In English and history, only one state received an "A." When the data were aggregated, no state had an "A" average, and only Arizona, California, and Texas earned a "B" average. In every subject, at least one state published excellent standards, demonstrating that it can be done. The "Forum" section of the report contains commentaries on the standards movement by five eminent participators and observers: (1) Lynne Cheney; (2) Denis Doyle; (3) William Galston; (4) Will Marshall; and (5) Susan Traiman. One appendix contains the criteria for reviewing state standards, and the other contains the documents examined listed by state. (SLD)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Core Curriculum, Criteria, Education, Educational Improvement, Elementary Secondary Education, English, Geography Instruction, History Instruction, Mathematics Instruction, Science Instruction, Standards, State Programs
Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, 1015 18th Street, N.W., Suite 300, Washington, DC 20036.
Publication Type: Collected Works - Serials; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, Washington, DC.