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 (http://dianeravitch.net/2014/12/04/how-to-turn-greatliterature-into-informational-text/comment-page-1/).
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.