Missouri Board of Education updates learning standards
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri State Board of Education voted to adopt new learning standards beginning in the 2016-2017 school year.
The new learning standards impact math, language arts, science and social studies. Some of the standards include adding cursive writing to K-5 education, adjusting expectations in various subjects and moving the introduction of Missouri history from fourth grade to third grade.
Communications Coordinator Sarah Potter said the standards ensure that students are ready to graduate.
"We do have high expectations for our students and if they do meet these standards they will graduate ready for whatever they want to do after high school," Potter said.
She said it's important that the standards stay updated.
"Our knowledge around the world is changing and we have to keep up with that," Potter said. "We have to keep evolving, we have to keep updating our standards to make sure that students are ready because the students that were graduating today and the students who graduated 20 years ago, they had very different knowledge bases."
Missouri State Teachers Association spokesman Todd Fuller said the new standards will most likely have to be adjusted in the future.
"I think all of the standards will need to be evaluated and observed throughout the school year and probably tweaked at some point to determine if they're effective and if they're working best for the benefit of students," Fuller said.
The Missouri General Assembly passed a bill in 2014 that created a new process for how Missouri Learning Standards are revised. Two groups of teachers and parents for each subject met beginning in fall 2014 through fall 2015. They had the responsibility to decide what students should be learning in each grade level and what the expectations are. This is the first time that process was used.
Teachers now have to align their curriculum with the updated standards.