“This is not like flipping a light switch on,” Schools prepare to implement new academic standards

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OKLAHOMA - When Oklahoma students go back to the classroom next school year, they’ll be taught a new set of education standards, despite talk of changes by lawmakers.

But, since the House failed to take action on two amendments added by state senators, the standards, as written, will go into effect August 1.

The focus now turns to implementation.

The game plan just changed for superintendents like Cecilia Robinson-Woods.

“It is going to be a lot of work to get it all in place,” she said.

She’s talking about new education standards and new ways of reaching students, something her district has been getting ready for.

“Our math department started in March, and what they did was an alignment of courses to match the standards,” she said.

The new rules replace common core which lawmakers got rid of two years ago.

“This is not like flipping a light switch on. All of a sudden, there is a lot of work that has to be done before school starts,” said State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister.

She said now the department is focused on helping districts establish a curriculum now standards are set.

“A standard example would be that we count to 100 in kindergarten. We are not going to need to change a text book to change that standard in our state

That's why she said the changes won’t cost money, only time.

She also thanked lawmakers, although some became critical of the new standards that were widely supported in the beginning.

“Then, at the 11th hour, there were comments made from some outside our state. That is something that in no way should cast of should overshadow the important work of Oklahomans who wrote them and Oklahomans who want them,” Hofmeister said.

The state plans to offer workshops and professional development opportunities to help teachers better understand the new standards this summer.

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