Five Things Teachers Say They Need for Common Core Success

By Dennis Pierce

How can you support your teachers most effectively as they work to integrate the Common Core Standards into instruction?integrate the Common Core Standards into instruction

Obviously the needs of your teachers might differ from those in other districts, but a recent survey from Scholastic and the Gates Foundation offers some interesting insight into what teachers across the nation say they need for Common Core success.

The survey revealed that the deeper teachers get into weaving the Standards into their instruction and assessment, the more they seem to be recognizing the challenges involved in this work. Last year, 73% of teachers agreed that Common Core implementation is challenging; this year, 81% of teachers agreed.

The survey also asked teachers what kinds of support they need the most to ensure their Common Core success. Here are their top five responses:

  1. Common Core-aligned instructional materials (86%);
  1. High-quality professional development (84%);
  1. Additional planning time to find materials and prepare lessons (78%);
  1. Opportunities to collaborate with other teachers on best practices for implementing the Common Core (78%); and
  1. Ideas for how to teach in an inquiry-based way that promotes deep thinking among students (69%).

Other supports that teachers say they need for Common Core success include technology devices for their students (57%), seeing colleagues in action who are already integrating the Standards successfully (55%), and materials to help explain the goals of the Common Core to parents (52%).

What can K-12 leaders learn from these survey results? A key step you can take to ensure the success of your Common Core initiatives is to build more time for planning and collaboration into your school calendar. That might take some creative thinking to pull off—and in a future blog post, we’ll look at some of the ways other districts have done this.



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