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ERIC Number: ED511564
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 16
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Sizing up State Standards, 2008
American Federation of Teachers (NJ)
The members at the American Federation of Teachers examined each state's and Washington, D.C.'s content standards documents to determine whether or not they contain enough information about what students should learn to provide the basis for coherent curricula and assessments. There is no perfect formula for this; they made a series of judgment calls based on a set of criteria. They examined only those documents that states posted on their Web sites as of October 2007 and referred to as the state content standards (see Appendix B). In their findings, they report on each state's standards by level (i.e., elementary, middle and high school). To be judged as having strong content standards at any particular level, a state had to meet their criteria for strong content standards in more than half of the grades associated with that level. Their findings reveal that: (1) States continue to do a better job with their math and science standards; (2) The quality of the standards also varies by level; and (3) Standards that failed to meet their criteria did so for three main reasons: They were repeated, clustered, or had missing or vague content. States should do the following: (1) Develop grade-by-grade standards that are explicit; (2) Bring specific United States and world history into their early elementary standards; (3) Describe what high school students should know and be able to do by course; and (4) Provide instructional guidance and teacher resources to help teachers bring the standards into the classroom. Appendices include: (1) Which Standards Met AFT's Criteria for Clarity, Specificity, and Content?; and (2) Documents Reviewed. (Contains 5 tables.)
American Federation of Teachers. 555 New Jersey Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001. Tel: 202-879-4400; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Federation of Teachers
Identifiers - Location: District of Columbia; United States