The new common core state standards implemented in schools across Kentucky and 42 other states at the beginning of the school year have changed the academic landscape for all students.
The new standards were designed to provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn in a way that is relevant to the real world, and to reflect the knowledge and skills students need to be successful in postsecondary institutions and careers.
Beginning in 2014, all adult education centers will be giving a new GED test based on the new common core standards, something Clark Adult Education Director Jim Porter said he was excited about.
“Our coursework will be held to the very same standards as the high school, which is wonderful,” Porter said. “The new test will be much more rigorous in all subject areas, much more specific, much more measurable and academically it is a much higher standard.”
High school teachers across the state have undergone extensive preparation to be able to teach the new standards and Porter said he and his staff have to do the same thing over the next two years to be prepared.
“Some of my teachers and I will spend some time before the first of the year completing a very rigorous course on the new common core standards and what they are and how we are going to address them,” Porter said. “Then next year we will do a much more advanced class so that by 2013 we will be ready to implement the teaching program full course.”
Porter said that after reviewing the current materials the center has and learning where to get more resources, he would begin putting the new standards in place during the next two years, even before the new test is devised in 2014.
“One of the great things about the new standards is that they present a very logical process of how to proceed from the very basics all the way up to the critical reading skills and language arts skills,” Porter said. “We are already doing many of the things required, but we will be looking at some ideas so we can do it better and to find the things we need to improve on so we can go ahead and implement them.”
Porter said because the new standards will make the test harder, he feels like it will probably take a little more time for students to prepare for the test.
“My advice to anyone thinking about getting their GED is to get it done now because the 2014 test will be more rigorous and require more specific knowledge, so it is going to take us a little longer to prepare folks,” Porter said. “But once you complete the new GED requirements you will be much more prepared for life. You’ll have higher educational skills to compete and find a job and be able to progress up the chain to make a reasonable living.”
Adults trying to go back to school have many demands on their time,¿Porter said, so the center offers a morning block of classes and an afternoon block of classes to make it easier.
“Going back to school is tough. First you have to admit you need to do it, then you have to have the courage to go and do it, because it takes a lot of time and adults have a lot of challenges in life to deal with along with their school,” Porter said.¿“That’s why we have morning and afternoon classes in blocks, so that if you have to miss a morning class because of a doctor’s appointment, you can come in the afternoon and take the same class with the same teacher and not miss a beat.”
Porter said the center had a dedicated staff that has only one goal and that’s to see people change their lives by getting an education.
“I’m very fortunate in that my folks are very excited about what they do because we see positive change in our students,” Porter said.¿“We believe in what we do because we know it works and we see lives changed. We see people who have gone through our center and gone on to some type of postsecondary instruction and get a job and that’s what it’s all about, and these new core standards can only help make them even better prepared.”
For more information about Clark Adult Education contact Porter at 744-1975.
Contact Bob Flynn at email@example.com.