The director of the Iowa Department of Education has appointed a new 21-member commission to help schools with what are called the “core” academic standards. Department spokesperson, Staci Hupp, says the commission has some key issues ahead of it. “What can we do to strengthen the statewide implementation of our statewide standards and how can we approve the level of communication that we have from the state level right down to the district level,” she says.
Districts are working at the local level to create their plans and Hupp says this some additional help. “We’re hearing from schools that they need more support from the state level in terms of implementing the standards,” according to Hupp. “It’s great to have rigorous standards — we have those in place with the Iowa core standards — but we need to make sure at the state level that we’re following up to make schools have what they need to really put this into practice.”
Iowa was the last state in the nation to adopt statewide standards in 2008 which establish what students are expected to learn in mathematics, English/language arts, science and social studies from kindergarten through 12th grade. Hupp is on the commission, which met for the first time last week. “This is a group that will meet quarterly and right now we are looking at this as being a three-year process,” Hupp says.
Members of the Iowa Core Commission are : Jenny Becker, Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids; Brad Buck, Iowa Department of Education, Des Moines; Mary Jane Cobb, Iowa State Education Association, Des Moines; Joan Crowl, Glenwood Community School District, Glenwood;Joe Crozier, Grant Wood Area Education Agency, Cedar Rapids; Lea Davidson, Iowa Department of Education, Des Moines; Nadene Davidson, University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls; Lynne Devaney, Dubuque Community School District, Dubuque; Tom Downs, Iowa Association of School Boards, Des Moines; Kirstey Ewald, Charles City Community School District, Charles City; Lou Howell, Iowa ASCD, Urbandale; Roark Horn, Area Education Agency 267, Cedar Falls; D.T. Magee, Iowa Board of Educational Examiners, Des Moines; Rita Martens, Iowa Department of Education, Des Moines; Jennifer Paulsen, Cedar Falls Community School District, Cedar Falls; Sue Runyon, Keystone Area Education Agency, Elkader; Gary Scholten, Principal Financial Group, Des Moines; Dan Smith, School Administrators of Iowa, Des Moines; Elliott Smith, Iowa Business Council, Des Moines; David Tilly, Iowa Department of Education, Des Moines.