The Cardinal Newman Society has a really helpful pamphlet on their concerns about the Common Core:
I like particularly point #2: “The Common Core is not intended for Catholic Education.”
This is not only true, but also something to think about. The Common Core was not designed for Catholic schools – as is evident from their statement of purpose: “The standards… are designed to ensure students are prepared for today’s entry-level careers, freshman-level college courses, and workforce training programs” (as quoted by CNS in the above link).
Well, yay. I certainly hope so.
Catholic Education, if it is to be true to itself, goes far beyond this.
But, as I think the Cardinal Newman Society would agree, Catholic schools do accomplish these rather modest and utilitarian goals on the side of their much greater mission toward building the Kingdom of God.
Here’s the catch though: we don’t really have “standards” of comparable rigor to offer as an alternative to the secular ones.
Common Core has it’s problems, but Catholic schools have long been adopting state standards because we do not have any of our own.
The Archdiocese of Denver now has their own educational standards, couched in terms of Catholic-ness… which you can see here… but if you compare them to the Common Core…
Common Core Reading standards for 9-10th grades (since that is what I am familiar with):
Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.9-10.2
Determine a theme or central idea of a text and analyze in detail its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.9-10.3
Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and advance the plot or develop the theme.(Source: http://www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/RL/9-10/#CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.1)
1. Cite evidence in the text that most strongly supports a specific analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.2. Analyze in detail the development and refinement of a theme or central idea in a text, including how it emerges and it shaped and refined by specific details.4. Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and advance the plot or develop the theme.(Source: http://archden.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/LA-Curriculum_OBJECTIVES-2013.pdf)