Indiana Board of Education drops Common Core, approves new academic standards

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The State Board of Education has approved new math and English standards to replace the Common Core benchmarks in Indiana's classrooms this fall.

The board voted 10-1 Monday morning to endorse the new education standards in a step that completes Indiana becoming the first state to formally abandon the national benchmarks that had been adopted by 45 states.

Some Common Core opponents told the board they didn't support the new standards, saying they're only watered-down versions of the contentious national standards.

Several of those opponents booed and jeered last week as the Education Roundtable led by Republican Gov. Mike Pence and Democratic state schools Superintendent Glenda Ritz voted overwhelmingly to endorse the new benchmarks.

The standards are a guide for what students should learn in each grade.

The state dropped Common Core, the national standards, because it didn't feel it was adequately preparing students for college and career. The number one goal behind going out on its own was to develop the most rigorous standards in the nation for students K-12 in math, language arts, and English.

Last week, Indiana's Education Roundtable voted to endorse the new standards imposed by the Department of Education and the Center for Education and Career Innovation. They're the ones who authored the new plans. Since last October, 150 teachers, higher education faculty members and business representatives worked together volunteering more than 6,000 hours to pull what they consider the best ideas from around the country and then take them to the next step.

"We feel very strongly these are the clearest and most rigorous standards that Indiana has ever had. That's what the experts on our evaluation and the college and career ready panel said and we think these will provide greater clarity to teachers as they're developing local lesson plans and preparing students for the next grade level or the next step in their lives whether that's college or going into their career," said Claire Fiddian-Green, Center for Education and Career Innovation.

"Through the process, we honed in on what we thought were the very best standards and spent a lot of time on the language and made a lot of modifications and developed our own unique standards," said Fiddian-Green.

The changes will go into effect in the classroom at this fall.