Strong Standards: A Review of Changes to State Standards Since the Common Core

In this report, Achieve focuses on states that had previously adopted and implemented the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English language arts (ELA). The 24 states studied here have implemented state-developed ELA standards after eliminating use of CCSS. To understand how well these state ELA standards reflect foundations of college and career readiness, Achieve analyzed these state standards to assess how well the standards articulate expectations for student performance, knowledge, or skill. Analysis also focused on how state ELA standards approach text complexity. 

Achieve's analysis found that 20 of the 24 state ELA standards included in the study include each of the key elements needed to prepare students for citizenship, college, and career. The study does raise concern about the variability in text complexity is included in various state ELA standards. Achieve suggests that state ELA standards provide clear guidance regarding text complexity, including guidance for evaluating complexity from grade to grade. Ratings on different standards dimensions are included for all 24 state ELA standards in this report.

Content Comments 

This Achieve report may be particularly helpful for states who are moving away from CCSS and implementing state-developed content standards, as it provides considerations for standards that are reflective college and career knowledge and skills. The report's content is also helpful for understanding the features of other states' ELA standards and how these standards compare to one another.