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Leveraging Back to School to Inform Parents about College- and Career-Ready Standards Thursday, September 18 2:00-3:00 p.m. EST.

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Presentation on theme: "Leveraging Back to School to Inform Parents about College- and Career-Ready Standards Thursday, September 18 2:00-3:00 p.m. EST."— Presentation transcript:

1 Leveraging Back to School to Inform Parents about College- and Career-Ready Standards Thursday, September 18 2:00-3:00 p.m. EST

2 2 Agenda Welcome and overview of goals for today’s webinar About Achieve Share out reporting trends on parents and the CCSS Overview of the latest research on what parents are really saying with Michael Gilligan, Achieve’s Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Alex Bratty, Partner with Public Opinion Strategies State-based advocates Erin Hart and Christie Silverstein representing the Arizona Aims Higher Coalition will share tips they’ve learned on communicating with parents Jared Myracle, with Gibson County Special School District in Tennessee, will lend his perspective as a district-leader via video Highlight resources Q&A Brief survey

3 About Achieve 3 Achieve is strongly committed to ensuring all students graduate from high school “college and career ready” or, in other words, fully prepared academically for any and all opportunities they choose to pursue. Achieve is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit education reform organization dedicated to working with states to raise academic standards and graduation requirements, improve assessments, and strengthen accountability and public reporting systems. Since 2005, Achieve has worked with a cross-sector of state leaders to improve postsecondary preparation by aligning key policies with the demands of the real world. To support states, Achieve convenes leaders from within and across states, provides technical assistance, conducts timely research, and offers advocacy, communications, and outreach tools and support. The webinar is being recorded and all the resources highlighted will be available on our website at:

4 “Common Core – particularly math – is overly complicated.” “Math under Common Core has even parents stumbling,” The New York Times, 6/29/14“Math under Common Core has even parents stumbling,” “It’s different from how I learned. I can’t help my child with his/her homework because I don’t know the methodology.” “Parents speak out at first Common Core session,”, 9/3/14“Parents speak out at first Common Core session,” “Common Core is one-size-fits-all, and my child’s needs and learning style won’t be accommodated.” “Letter: Common Core leads to one-size-fits-all school,” Wisconsin Rapids Tribune, 9/8/14“Letter: Common Core leads to one-size-fits-all school,” “There’s no longer any memorization of basic facts that students need to know.” “Common Core teaches kids new way to add 9+6 that takes 54 seconds,” The Daily Caller, 9/3/14“Common Core teaches kids new way to add 9+6 that takes 54 seconds,” “Common Core = testing. There’s too much testing and teaching to the test, and not enough learning.” “Anti-Common Core rally in Hauppauge draws politicians, parents, teachers,” Newsday, 9/4/14“Anti-Common Core rally in Hauppauge draws politicians, parents, teachers,” Parents and the Common Core: Media Trends 4

5 Insights from Focus Groups

6 6 Perceptions of the Standards Aware of the standards, but still lack understanding Real hesitation on the standards – Don’t see the need for change One size fits all Perception as “national,” “federal”

7 7 Perceptions of the Assessments In AZ, little regard for old statewide assessment (AIMS) Skeptical about the new tests Don’t connect that the tests will be aligned to new standards See more steps to get an answer are more opportunity for error Expect teachers to still teach to the test

8 8 Perceptions of Public School Moms Communications Challenge: Moms’ personal experiences are negative and frustrating vs. positive reaction to written description Elementary and Middle School Moms Railed against the new way of teaching math Frustrated when helping with homework Being told NOT to help their kids using the old way No text books or examples for them to even begin to understand the new way There is a significant gap between how the standards and tests are being described and the day-to-day experiences of the moms and their children

9 9 Communications Vehicles Hearing from teachers proved paramount Elementary school parents also want to hear from principals/school boards Parents want to interact and ask questions Top 3 resources desired Parent-focused website, but expect interactivity (ask questions, interact with others, blogs) Meet with child’s teacher or counselor Attend a parent workshop

10 10 Messages that Worked Existing messaging was ranked highest Tests not required for graduation, scores may look lower, etc. Supported: Consistency across districts and states A test that measures what students are really learning is appealing Too much time teaching to the test Share success stories

11 11 Recommendations Communicate real information, not advocacy – avoid sounding politically correct Help them understand the “why” Explain how the goals of the standards are going to be achieved Reassure that graduation is not dependent on passing the test Provide resources to parents to support their child

12 12 Recommendations Find educators who are supportive of the standards and have them speak in person to parents Ramp up all methods of communication. A significant and consistent effort to get parents the support and information they need to help their kids is needed Create and disseminate resources that help parents help their children

13 Exemplary State- and District-Based Efforts

14 Leveraging Back to School to Help Inform Parents about the Transition to College- and Career-Ready Standards

15 Expect More Arizona What are we? Statewide 501c(3) non-partisan education advocacy organization Who are we? Movement comprised of parents, voters, educators, business & community leaders What do we do? Raising public awareness, engaging and mobilizing voters and parents, and convening partners to take collaborative action on key education issues

16 Arizona Public Engagement Task Force Independent collaboration of 50 partners across business, philanthropy, education, community Expect More Arizona serves as the convener Goals: Increasing awareness and support for Arizona’s College and Career Ready Standards and high quality, aligned assessment This Year’s Focus: Providing Resources and Information to parents

17 Opportunities to Support Parents this Year Help parents understand what the standards are and why they are necessary Support schools and teachers in sharing information with parents Share information on implementation of new assessment Alleviate frustrations with math Demonstrate what high expectations look like

18 3 Ways We’re Doing This… Arizona Aims Higher campaign Back to School Parent-Teacher Conferences

19 Arizona Aims Higher Multi-media campaign to increase awareness

20 Video Web #TeacherTuesday

21 Infographic Digital / Email Radio

22 Parent Resources

23 Back to School Toolkit Goal = To distribute resources to parents via schools Includes links to all materials Shared with partners and educators across Arizona Use materials at Back to School Nights, Curriculum Nights and parent teacher conferences Relatively easy way to support schools in providing resources to parents

24 Back to School Parent Guide Includes information on the standards, assessments and how parents can help their child Mailed to 44,000 households statewide

25 Parent-Teacher Conferences Distribution of grade by grade milestones Key things children will learn in English and math Activities to do at home English and Spanish Questions to ask your child’s teachers Email, infographics, collateral

26 Other National Resources National PTA Parent Guides GreatSchools GreatKids Milestones (sneak peak – coming in October)

27 Thank You! Erin – Christie –

28 Jared Myracle, Supervisor of Instruction, 9-12, Gibson County Special School District, Tennessee To learn more about the great work happening in Gibson County, check out these articles: District-Based Efforts 28 Different and Better: What Common Core Implementations Looks Like in Gibson County - College Ready 9 Ideas to Help Explain Common Core to Parents

29 29 Resources for Parents and Families on CCSS Achieve compiled a sampling of the resources that state education agencies, school districts, and third- party and national advocacy organizations have developed to empower parents to help their students succeed, which is posted on our website at common-corecompiled a sampling common-core Please send additional resources to Anne Bowles at

30 Questions & Answers

31 Anne Bowles Associate Director, Strategic Initiatives or 202-419-1553 Michael Gilligan Vice President, Strategic Initiatives or 202-745-2317 Kelly Hughes Communications Associate or 202-745-2306 Contact Us! 31

32 Achieve will post the slides and resources highlighted on our website at We are very interested hearing your Feedback on this webinar. Survey Link: Thank you! 32

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