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Duval County superintendent agrees with full common core implementation next year

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Updated: 12/03/2013 7:52 pm

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Florida is on target to fully implement national assessment standards known as common core for the 2013-2014 school year. But not everyone thinks that is a smart move.

"It's not being handled real well," said Colleen Wood.

As a mom, Wood said kids need to be the priority in the classroom. But as an education advocate, she said that hinges on the teachers, and they are waving red flags about the transition into the new state assessment standards.

"The teachers are saying, 'How is it that you're evaluating me on a subject I've never taught?' We literally have teachers working every day whose evaluation will be tied to the reading score of a student they have never seen," Wood said.

Right now, grades K-2 have already transitioned. By next year, every grade will be aligned. Wood said it's too much too soon.

"We believe our children deserve a good implementation and not a rush just to meet some artificial deadline," she said.

She has the State Association of District Superintendents on her side. The president is urging the state board to delay full implementation for three years. Local superintendent Dr. Nikolai Vitti doesn't agree.

"I think what's best for our children are higher standards," he said.

Teacher evaluations are linked to common core standards and Vitti said he does think the state should hold off on accountability.

"We will still publish how our students do in reading and math so the public can see exactly where our kids stand," he said. "But have next year just a hold harmless year and then go full to with accountability in 15-16."

Action News asked the education commissioner if she would consider putting off full implementation. She said students are transitioning well so she intends to keep the time table intact.



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