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NJ Legislators Consider Controversial ‘Common Core’ Testing For Schools

(File photo.  Credit: Tim Boyle/ Getty Images)

(File photo. Credit: Tim Boyle/ Getty Images)

David Madden David Madden
David Madden is a Philadelphia native with virtually a lifetime of...
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By David Madden

TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — New Jersey is moving toward implementing so-called “common core” educational standards that tie into the nation as a whole.

But several educational leaders are suggesting the state take a slower approach to reform.

The idea, according to proponents, is to improve math and language performance by teaching kids more complex concepts sooner.

That creates a whole new classroom paradigm, which takes time to adjust to, says Patricia Wright of the New Jersey Principal and Supervisors Association.

“They do require and demand a fundamental shift in the way we prepare our students,” she tells KYW Newsradio, “therefore they demand a fundamental shift in classroom instruction.”

And while there seemed to be agreement during testimoney before the state Assembly Education Committee that the goals are worthy of pursuit, one person pointed out that “the devil is in the details.”

Among critics of the program, parents are concerned about increased testing for kids.  Teachers and administrators are worried that test results are too quickly tied to their performance.

The tests are due to start in the next school year but there seems to be a push to delay those tests for an extra year.