Common Core Resources for Parents and Community Members

This section contains resources which have been compiled for parents and community members seeking to learn more about the Common Core State Standards. Below you will find information on the Common Core State Standards themselves, including information on adoption by state.

Information on the Common Core State Standards

Corestandards.org provides an overview of the Standards, information on adoption by State, and FAQs. The site is published by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, the organizations that oversaw the creation of these Standards.

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Common Core State Standards in the Community

A two-page brief from Change the Equation that summarizes what the standards are and what they mean for your community.

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Common Core 101

This helpful “101” guide, created by the Alliance for Excellent Education, is a summary of the Common Core State Standards Initiative and its current status for parents, legislators and community members.

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The Common Core State Standards

All documents on this page are available courtesy of the official website of the Common Core State Standards Initiative, CoreStandards.org, published by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, the organizations that oversaw the creation of the Standards.

Common Core State Standards - Interactive Version

Website featuring searchable versions of the Standards. Can be navigated by grade, subject area, math domain, etc.

Interactive ELA / Literacy Standards website

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Interactive Math Standards website

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Common Core State Standards - PDF Versions

Printable PDF versions of the Standards in math and ELA / literacy for all grades. The ELA / literacy document includes the literacy standards across the content areas.

Common Core State Standards for ELA / Literacy

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Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

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Appendices to the Common Core State Standards

ELA / Literacy Appendix A: Research Supporting Key Elements of the Standards; Glossary of Key Terms

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ELA / Literacy Appendix B: Text Exemplars and Sample Performance Tasks

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ELA / Literacy Appendix C: Samples of Student Writing

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Additional Common Core State Standards Official Documents

Official introduction to the CCSS and information on application of the CCSS to special populations.

Introduction to the Common Core State Standards

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Application of Common Core State Standards for English Language Learners

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Application to Students with Disabilities

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CoreStandards.org

Official website of the Common Core State Standards Initiative.

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Common Core FAQ's

Answers questions such as, "Who wrote the Common Core State Standards?", "Will my students be tested on these Standards?", and "What do the Standards mean for English language learners and students with disabilities?"

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Common Core Resources for Parents

Materials developed especially for parents of K-12 students.

National PTA Guides to the Common Core

Simple explanations for parents of what students need to know in each grade for ELA and Math. 2 pages. Available in English and Spanish.

Two-page Guide by Grade (K-12)

Two-page summaries of the Common Core for each grade.

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Four-page Guide by Grade (K-12)

Four-page summaries of the Common Core for each grade.

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See all PTA parent materials

All PTA Common Core materials, including FAQs.

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CGCS Parent Roadmaps for the Common Core

Simple explanations for parents of what students need to know in each grade in ELA and Math. 6-7 pages. Available in English and Spanish.

English Language Arts Roadmaps for K-12

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Math Roadmaps for K-12

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English Language Arts Roadmaps for K-12: Spanish-language version

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Math Roadmaps for K-12: Spanish-language version

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Brief Video Introductions to the Common Core

Videos at 3-minute and 30-second lengths. Both available in English and Spanish. Created by the Council of Great City Schools.

30-Second Overview Video

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3-Minute Overview Video

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Common Core Presentation for Parents

A presentation developed for use by educators in speaking with parents about the Common Core State Standards.

PowerPoint with Notes (11-slide PPT)

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PowerPoint without Notes (11-slide PPT)

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Teacher Support for the Common Core

Voices of educators on the Common Core State Standards

Joseph Almeida

Alma del Mar Charter School New Bedford, Massachusetts

I can now focus. No longer do I have to cover “a mile wide” range of standards. This allows me to spend more time on fewer topics, which deepens students’ content knowledge and increases the level of rigor that I can provide in my instruction. For example, I can now spend a month helping my students develop fluency in adding and subtracting within 20, whereas I may have only taken two weeks before Common Core.

Joseph Alameida is a member of the “Education Champions” fellows program at the non-profit organization America Achieves. Fellows were selected based on their impact on student success, the quality of their classroom practice, and their interest in impacting educational success at a large scale.

Tim Bailey

Northwest Middle School Salt Lake City, Utah

By adopting the teaching practices of the Common Core I have addressed the needs of my students in a way that I have not been able to do so in the past. By teaching evidence based analysis and then using this to focus on my students’ reading and writing, I have immediately taken my class to levels that I did not think we would reach so soon. The Common Core’s emphasis on more focused and essential teaching practices can increase achievement with a broad range of our students.

Tim Bailey is a member of the “Education Champions” fellows program at the non-profit organization America Achieves. Fellows were selected based on their impact on student success, the quality of their classroom practice, and their interest in impacting educational success at a large scale.

Lyn Cannaday

Greenway High School Phoenix, Arizona

The Common Core is a chance to help students achieve more success than ever. My students are covering less material, but for the first time, coherence has moved to the forefront and I demand that my students understand, deeply and completely. As I shift the instruction to text-based scaffolding and text-based questions, my students are starting to learn to use the text as the expert in the room. I have confidence that this group of students is better prepared for future challenges because they know to rely on text for clarification, not on me.

Kaycee Eckhardt

Recovery School District New Orleans, Louisiana

The Common Core gives hope that rigorous, high-quality content can be made available to all learners, who are being prepared to engage in meaningful, innovative, and world-changing pursuits. The changes I’ve made in my practice include more rigorous text selection, identifying places of discovery within a text, and challenging my students to unveil them — rather than my revealing the magic of text for them — and extensive time reading and rereading text before I teach it so that I can anticipate the probable misunderstandings of learners and be well prepared for them.

Kaycee Eckhardt is a member of the “Education Champions” fellows program at the non-profit organization America Achieves. Fellows were selected based on their impact on student success, the quality of their classroom practice, and their interest in impacting educational success at a large scale.

Aaron Grossman

Washoe Country School District  Reno, Nevada

I used to think that getting a student to pass their state exam put them on a path to college and career readiness.  After all, demonstration of proficiency on their state test was a proxy for being ready for the next level of schoolwork. I was wrong.

The CCSS are representative of the moment so many of us have been waiting for.  They allow us to shift instructional time to focus and go deep. The Common Core is our chance to reset the system and focus on what matters most.

Joey Hawkins

Vermont Writing Collaborative  South Strafford, Vermont

The Common Core is the best hope we have for real equity for all kids. It confirms the truth of what good teachers have known and practiced - that all kids deserve to learn and can learn, and that intentional teaching of rich text-based reading and writing can open doors for all kids. Finding more and more ways to help teachers do this is a mission!

Jill Johnson

Urban Promise Academy Oakland, California

The Common Core provides the rigor and depth our students need in order to be successful in college and beyond. This year I’m creating in-depth Common Core units focused more intently on tasks that support students’ application and conceptual understanding of math concepts, as well as summative assessment that focus on more than multiple choice. 

Jill Johnson is a member of the “Education Champions” fellows program at the non-profit organization America Achieves. Fellows were selected based on their impact on student success, the quality of their classroom practice, and their interest in impacting educational success at a large scale.

John Mahoney

Benjamin Banneker Academic High School Washington, DC

In High School mathematics we are now focusing on fewer topics each year and in turn doing less re-teaching than we used to do. At our school, we are linking what we are teaching from year to year. We are also focusing more on applications of mathematics and trying to ensure that our students develop a deep understanding of what they are learning. I believe this work with the Common Core will give all students the opportunity to be successful in both college and in the workplace.

John Mahoney is a member of the “Education Champions” fellows program at the non-profit organization America Achieves. Fellows were selected based on their impact on student success, the quality of their classroom practice, and their interest in impacting educational success at a large scale.

Torrey Palmer

Washoe County School District  Reno, Nevada

The Common Core is an opportunity to simplify our practice so that we can spend more time with rich text, facilitating meaningful literacy experiences for all of our students. New to my position this year, Common Core has indeed framed all of my work, allowing me to focus deeply on content and instruction. The opportunity to work with teachers with the Core Task Project has been particularly invigorating, as there has been a sense of reclaiming professionalism. Truly exciting!

David Riesenfeld

Robert F. Wagner Jr. Secondary School for Art and Technology New York, New York

The CCSS has provided me with a new, more focused look at how to best prepare my students for post-secondary life. The standards have prompted me to rethink my teaching of social studies by shifting my emphasis from a curriculum focused on the intricacies of history to one that provides an opening for students to read closely. My work is now embedded in the idea that literacy must be the primary vehicle for learning historical content. Though this began as a crisis of ideology for me, it has proven to enhance my students’ learning of history while bolstering amazing advances in their reading of complex texts and their use of sound, text-based evidence in their writing.

Catherine Schmidt

Washoe Country School District Reno, Nevada

The focus of my work has shifted with the release of the Common Core.  I now work to familiarize teachers with the instructional shifts that the CCSS will require — where I previously worked doing "professional development," I now spend more time facilitating professional learning. My teaching practice no longer includes all the scaffolding I assumed to be necessary prior to reading, and I ask many more text-dependent questions after reading. The CCSS offer our students an opportunity to leave our system truly college and career ready.

Lisa Wakefield

Greenway High School Phoenix, Arizona

I am new to the Common Core and excited to start working on it with my ELL students in order to prepare them for their mainstream classes. I have just begun using more text-dependent questions with my English learners and it has been exciting to see them work through high level thinking. It is not always easy, but I am committed to continuing it for their benefit. The Common Core will support my efforts to make students think deeply in my classroom.

Sarah Reynolds Zuckerman

Key Learning Community Indianapolis, Indiana

The Common Core truly allows collaborative teaching.

The element of the Common Core that has impacted my work most is the focus on reading and writing grounded in evidence. The focus on the use of evidence is something that happens naturally in arts education and something I am advocating for across all disciplines.

Sarah Reynolds Zuckerman is a member of the “Education Champions” fellows program at the non-profit organization America Achieves. Fellows were selected based on their impact on student success, the quality of their classroom practice, and their interest in impacting educational success at a large scale.

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Business Speaks for the Core

Over 70 top business leaders proclaim their support for the Common Core State Standards.

College and Career State Standards: An Overview

What are the Common Core State Standards?

In 2010, 46 states and the District of Columbia adopted the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), a set of consistent expectations for what students should master in grades K-12.
 
The CCSS are rigorous, internationally-benchmarked standards that are designed to ensure that students leave school with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in college and careers.
 
The CCSS ARE NOT a national curriculum, or federally mandated.
 
The CCSS will have aligned assessments where scores will be available faster, providing parents and teachers the ability to immediately intervene and support struggling students. 

Why now?

The need to raise student achievement in the public education system is clear, as American students are leaving school without the skills and education needed to succeed.

Once leading the world in academic scores and education attainment, the United States has fallen behind other top performing countries:

  • The United States ranks 25th out of 34 top performing countries in Math, and 17th in Science.
  • The United States has fallen from 1st to 10th in the number of students who graduate high school, and ranks 12th in the number of 24-36 year-olds with a college degree.
  • Approximately 27% of high school students do not graduate, and only 40% of high school students enter some form of college or university.

Currently, individuals who achieve post-secondary education may also still lack content and skills knowledge that match employer needs. This weakens the United States’ ability to produce a workforce that is fully prepared to compete in the local, national, and global economies. As a result, 3.4 million jobs in the United States go unfilled a year because there are not enough qualified candidates to fill them. 

How Can Business Support the Common Core State Standards?

Without proper implementation, with different outcomes for students, and without proper preparation for teachers, the United States will never catch up to high performing countries, and the economy will continue to suffer.

  • Communicate. Business leaders can speak to the need for higher standards from an economic perspective. The CCSS will help develop a workforce that can meet the demands of the 21st century economy.
  • Engage. Encourage employees to reach out to local school districts and leverage business skills (innovation, quality control, continuous improvement, etc.) to support CCSS implementation.
  • Encourage.Support school districts and communities as they stay the course.

Your voice must be heard as a steady and consistent proponent for college and career ready standards in K-12 education.

For more information, please access the following resources:

For businesses: achieve.org/achieving-common-core

For parents: PTA Parents’ Guide to Student Success

For educators: achievethecore.org

 

Open Letter from 73 Business Leaders, Feb 2013

As business leaders, we believe that ALL American children have a right to an education that prepares them to be successful in a competitive global economy. We also understand that in order to compete in a knowledge-based, global economy, we must improve the academic performance of our students. The United States is once again at a critical place in its quest for educational excellence, and the need for a strong employer voice is greater than ever. America's business leaders can make a positive difference for schools, students and the country's future if we join together and share our expectations for education and our support for the people and institutions that move education reform forward.

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) Initiative, led by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and the Council of Chief State School Officers, has produced K–12 standards in the foundational subjects of math and English that meet the business community's expectations: they are college- and career-ready, grounded in evidence and internationally benchmarked. The CCSS set consistent, focused, rigorous academic expectations for all students, and 46 states and the District of Columbia have already adopted them. The CCSS serve as a necessary foundation for making the changes needed to improve student achievement and ensure the United States' educational and economic preeminence.

We support these new, tougher academic standards that are currently being rolled out in classrooms across the country. These standards will better prepare students for college and the workplace, something of critical importance to the nation's employers. The changes now under way in America's schools hold great promise for creating a more highly skilled workforce that is better equipped to meet the needs of local, state and national economies.

Appeared in the New York Times on February 12, 2013

Business Leaders Supporting the Common Core

  • 3M
    Inge Thulin 

    Chairman, President & CEO

  • ACCENTURE
    William D. Green 

    Chairman

  • ADM
  • AEROSPACE INDUSTRIES ASSOCIATION
    Marion C. Blakey 

    CEO & President

  • ALCOA
    Klaus Kleinfeld 

    Chairman & CEO

  • AMPLIFY
    Joel Klein 

    CEO

  • BAYER CORPORATION
    Phil Blake 

    President

  • BOSTON SCIENTIFIC
    Michael F. Mahoney 

    President & CEO

  • BOEING
    W. James McNerney, Jr. 

    Chairman, President & CEO

  • BP AMERICA
    Lamar McKay 

    Chairman & President

  • BROWN-FORMAN
    Paul C. Varga 

    Chairman & CEO

  • BUFFALO SUPPLY INC.
    T.J. Jackson 

    CEO & President

  • THE BUSINESS-HIGHER EDUCATION FORUM
    Brian K. Fitzgerald 

    CEO

  • BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY STEM EDUCATION COALITION
    Rick Stephens 

    Chair

  • BUSINESS ROUNDTABLE
    John Engler 

    President

  • CA TECHNOLOGIES
    Michael Gregoire 

    CEO

  • CAPITAL GROUP
    James F. Rothenberg 

    Chairman

  • CARDINAL HEALTH
    George S. Barrett 

    Chairman & CEO

  • CAROLINA BIOLOGICAL SUPPLY
    Jim Parrish 

    President & CEO

  • CAUSECAST
    Ryan Scott 

    Founder & CEO

  • CHANGE THE EQUATION
    Craig R. Barrett 

    Chairman

    Linda P. Rosen 

    CEO

  • THE CONFERENCE BOARD
    Jon Spector 

    CEO & President

  • DAVITA HEALTHCARE PARTNERS
    Kent Thiry 

    Chairman & CEO

  • DOLLAR GENERAL
    Richard W. Dreiling 

    Chairman & CEO

  • THE DOW CHEMICAL COMPANY
    Andrew N. Liveris 

    Chairman & CEO

  • DUPONT
    Ellen Kullman 

    Chair of the Board & CEO

  • E-LINE MEDIA
    Michael Angst 

    CEO & Co-Founder

  • EATON
    Alexander M. Cutler 

    Chairman & CEO

  • ELI LILLY AND CO.
    John C. Lechleiter 

    Chairman, President & CEO

  • ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRIES COUNCIL
    Brian Dyak 

    Founder, Chairman & CEO

  • EPIC GAMES
    Tim Sweeney 

    Founder, Chairman & CEO

  • ERNST & YOUNG
    Stephen R. Howe Jr. 

    Americas Managing Partner

  • EXXON MOBIL CORPORATION
    Rex Tillerson 

    Chairman & CEO

  • GE
    Jeffrey R. Immelt 

    Chairman & CEO

  • GENERAL MILLS
    Kendall J. Powell 

    Chairman & CEO

  • HARLEY-DAVIDSON
    Keith Wandell 

    CEO & President

  • HARPER INDUSTRIES, INC.
    Billy Harper 

    CEO

  • HUMANA, INC.
    Bruce D. Broussard 

    CEO & President

  • INTEL
    Paul S. Otellini 

    President & CEO

  • INDIANA UNIVERSITY HEALTH
    Daniel F. Evans Jr. 

    CEO & President

  • MAJESTIC REALTY
    Ed Roski 

    Chairman & CEO

  • MANPOWERGROUP
    Jeffrey Joerres 

    Chairman & CEO

  • MARSH & MCLENNAN COMPANIES
    Daniel S. Glaser 

    CEO & President

  • MCGRAW-HILL
    Harold McGraw III 

    Chairman, President & CEO

  • MCKINSTRY
    Dean C. Allen 

    CEO

  • MICROSOFT CORPORATION
    Brad Smith 

    Executive Vice President & General Counsel

  • THE MITRE CORPORATION
    Alfred Grasso 

    President & CEO

  • NATIONAL DEFENSE INDUSTRIAL ASSOCIATION
    Lt. Gen. Lawrence Farrell Jr. 

    USAF (Ret.), CEO

  • NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
    Annette Thomas 

    CEO Macmillan Science & Education

  • NIELSEN MEDIA RESEARCH
    David Calhoun 

    CEO

  • NORTHROP GRUMMAN CORPORATION
    Wes Bush 

    Chairman, CEO & President

  • NORTHWESTERN MUTUAL LIFE
    John Schlifske 

    CEO

  • OPTUMRx
    Dirk McMahon 

    CEO

  • PASCO
    Paul A. Stokstad 

    President & Founder

  • PROMETHEAN
    James N. Marshall 

    CEO

  • RAYTHEON COMPANY
    William H. Swanson 

    Chairman & CEO

  • ROCKWELL AUTOMATION
    Keith Nosbusch 

    Chairman & CEO

  • ROCKWELL COLLINS
    Clayton M. Jones 

    Chairman & CEO

  • SALLY RIDE SCIENCE
    Sheryle Bolton 

    CEO

  • SAMSON ENERGY COMPANY, LLC
    Stacy Schusterman 

    CEO

  • SMART TECHNOLOGIES
    Neil Gaydon 

    President & CEO

  • SPACE SYSTEMS/LORAL
    John Celli 

    President

  • STATE FARM INSURANCE
    Edward B. Rust Jr. 

    Chairman & CEO

  • STELLAR SOLUTIONS
    Celeste Ford 

    CEO & Founder

  • SUNBURST ELECTRONICS
    John Cline 

    President & CEO

  • TACO BELL CORP.
    Greg Creed 

    CEO

  • TEXAS INSTRUMENTS
    Richard K. Templeton 

    Chairman, President & CEO

  • TIME WARNER CABLE
    Glenn A. Britt 

    Chairman & CEO

  • THE TRAVELERS COMPANIES, INC.
    Jay S. Fishman 

    Chairman & CEO

  • U.S. CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
    Thomas J. Donohue 

    CEO & President

  • UNITED LAUNCH ALLIANCE
    Michael C. Gass 

    President & CEO

  • VERNIER SOFTWARE & TECHNOLOGY
    David Vernier 

    Founder & CEO

  • XEROX
    Ursula Burns 

    Chairman & CEO