professornana (professornana) wrote,

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Mechanical issues

Every time I take the car in for routine service, the service manager suggests I need some other service performed. Oil Change? Gee, why not rotate the tires? Dashboard light not working? Hey, it's a good time for a new air filter. It's all about the extras. Since my car is relatively new (just coming up on its first birthday), I consult the owner's manual and also look at online resources to see if anything need be done. It is all about the money to the service manager. It is a little more to me than simply money. It is about not playing into their misconception that I know nothing about cars and servicing.

And so it goes with CCSS. The tentacles of the standards are reaching out and taking chokeholds in other areas. I saw a recent blog post about aligning standards with the arts (music, art, etc.). Diane Ravtich featured a tongue in cheek piece about how to get more NF into the Exemplar Texts (

This push to align, to limit, to dictate not only diminishes teacher autonomy, it is also censorship. I know, I know; the Exemplar Texts are simply a starting point. But what about that? Has anyone done some revision on the appendix to point to other texts that would be deemed appropriate? Nope. No revisions to the CCSS since their roll out. How wonderful it must be to have perfect standards that no one disputes right at the outset (insert sarcastic tone in preceding sentence). How lovely to have a list of books that does not need to be revised or even revisited (ditto sarcastic tone).

My colleague Karin Perry and I presented a preconference for YALSA on nonfiction. We managed to unearth plenty of NF texts to use with students. Donalyn Miller just developed a full day workshop on NF with tons of titles and resources and suggestions. How hard would it be for the architects of CCSS to do some revision and add to their "exemplar" list? And would it be TOO difficult to suggest that levels and lexiles (which autocorrect still turns into EXILES if I am not careful) are not the way to select texts? Apparently, that is the case. No revisiting; no revision; no walk back from standards that are developmentally inappropriate. Just the ca-ching from the money makers.
Tags: ccss, exemplar texts
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