Common Core Review Council makes stop in Jonesboro

Common Core Review Council makes stop in Jonesboro

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - A council, tasked with reviewing Common Core in Arkansas, made their way to Jonesboro Tuesday night.

Chaired by Lt. Governor Tim Griffin, the council is more than halfway through the statewide tour.

Once finished, the information discussed will be taken to the governor and might reshape how kids are taught in the Natural State again.

A large crowd, represented by teachers, students, administrators and parents from across Region 8, gave their opinion on Common Core Tuesday night at the ASU Cooper Alumni Center.

Some were extremely supportive Common Core and of how it's helped some of their students.

"I am so excited that also along with procedures and fluency in the Common Core math standards, there's conceptual understanding," Dr. Jeanne Glover, math specialist with the Jonesboro Public Schools said.

"Working with low performing students in common core, I'm seeing them perform," Pocahontas High School math teacher Melba Henderson said.

Others however, expressed disappointment with how their children have struggled as a result of certain methods of teaching.

"I can see how it is good for your low performers, but it's killing your high performers," Patience Gibson, a mother of two in the Valley View School District said.

Administrators responded, agreeing that the switch to Common Core hurt some students.

"7th through 9th grade have suffered the most because they have had to deal with all of the gaps," Gosnell Assistant Principal Anita McKinney said. "But students that are coming up now that are coming to our building that have been through Common Core, they know their stuff."

Dr. Jeff Flanigan, principal at the STEM Academy in Jonesboro, said the goal moving forward should be attaining confidence.

"I want to be able to look my teachers in the eye continuously and say keep teaching and they don't feel like their job is going to be on the line because a group of students didn't meet a certain score," Dr. Flanigan said.

Negative or positive, it's information that, going forward, might reshape education in the state.

Lt. Governor Tim Griffin said with two kids in schools with Common Core, this hits close to home for him.

"I wanna get it right. I think if you're making some people unhappy both on the pro side and the con side, you're probably doing your job and I think we're right in that sweet spot," Lt. Governor Griffin said. "We're just digging for the facts and we're gonna let the facts lead us to our conclusion."

There are four more stops in the tour. The next stop in Region 8 will be in Batesville at Lyon College on June 9 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Lt. Governor Griffin said he believes a final conclusion on Common Core in Arkansas will be wrapped up by the summer.

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