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NY State Board of Regents compromise on Common Core
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 11, 2014 11:10 AM

The New York State Board of Regents, a committee tasked with improving the implementation of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in New York, announced on Monday that it will enact several adaptations to the state's CCSS integration plan. The committee decided New York schools will have a longer grace period for implementing the Standards. Teachers will also have extra time to become well-versed in the CCSS and the best instruction methodologies. The Board of Regents made the decision in response to criticism from parents, educators and school administrators who believe that the implementation of the CCSS came too fast. According to Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch, the concerns of the public were heard.

"We have listened to the concerns of parents and teachers," Tisch said in a statement. "These changes will help give principals, teachers, parents and students the time to adjust."

However, Gov. Andrew Cuomo believes the revised plan does nothing to advance the state of education in New York.

"The time has come to seriously re-examine [the Board of Regents'] capacity and performance," he said in a statement, adding: "The Regents' response is … yet another in a long series of roadblocks to a much needed evaluation system."

Factors leading to the Board of Regents' decision
A new wave of education reform began in New York in 2010 when the state's board of education adopted the Common Core. People who liked the idea of education reform hesitated to fully advocate for the CCSS because of the strict timeline for implementation, the additional stress the Standards would put on the state's education budget, and the stringent teacher evaluation system. 

The Board of Regents faced pressure on both ends of the debate. It could either dissolve the implementation of the Standards and waste millions of dollars already spent or push forward with reform. Continuing the implementation of the CCSS would most likely lead to disgruntled New York residents and the potential abandonment of the reform due to lack of support. The Board did not succumb to the pressure, however, and developed a compromise that could lead to better cooperation between parents, teachers and the state's Public Education Department.

The committee's new plan recommends that schools in New York have until 2022 to show that their students meet the higher academic standards that come with the implementation of the CCSS. Initially, the deadline was set at 2017. Another major adaptation to the implementation of the CCSS focuses on teacher training. The state's education leaders requested more than $525 million from Gov. Cuomo to help pay for Common Core-specific training.