In a nutshell, all of this spending likely won’t impact student achievement.
Some of the interview highlights:
On the Race to the Top competition:
Kornhaber: Within the Race to the Top guidelines, there were five criteria and two of those relate directly to the Common Core. They called for [the use of] common standards and the use of common assessments for which only the Common Core state standards really were available.
On how the money was spent:
Kornhaber: Well, different states used it to get their systems aligned to the Common Core. So they used it in part to get data systems that could track how well kids were doing. They used it in New York State specifically to develop curriculum modules. [They used it] to help districts in some states get access to better professional development that would enable teachers to teach to the new standards and things like that.
On why she likens it to the Gold Rush:
Kornhaber: For the Common Core, teachers and districts and states were asked to mine for better student achievement and to do that, they would need a lot of equipment. They’d need new computers, they’d new data systems, they’d need new curriculum materials, etc. But as in the case of the Gold Rush, most people who went mining in search of gold did not come up with gold.
Jaspers: So you’re saying that despite all of this money being spent, it’s not necessarily going to yield better results. That’s, kind of, your read on the situation?
Kornhaber: Yes. And that read comes from the fact that prior reforms that are similar to the Common Core also did not boost achievement.
A couple of things to mention. First we’ve noted that this was going to be a colossal waste of money, and secondly, this demonstrates that money was spent to develop curriculum at the state level as was the case in New York so let’s dispense with the nonsense that Common Core was just about standards.