Pros and Cons of Common Core Standards

Pros and Cons of Common Core Standards


The Common Core Standards have generated a lot of discussion in the last decade. Some people think they are too rigorous, and others want to keep them because they believe it will make students more competitive. But do these standards benefit students? What are the pros and cons of Common Core Standards?

Common Core is a set of educational goals for mathematics and English language arts, as well as other subjects like social studies, science, art, music, foreign languages (French or Spanish), health education (physical education) that can be applied at all grade levels from kindergarten through 12th grade in public schools across the US. We’ll explore about CCSS below, but if you wish to skip this guide, our professional writers for hire are ready to cover you.

How the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) were drafted

Common Core was created by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and Council of Chief State School Officers.

In 2009, a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation provided funding for refining the standards to ensure that they are rigorous enough to prepare every student for success in college and careers. In 2010, many states started adopting Common Core Standards and preparing students for college-level work. These newly adopted standards were aligned with state educational content and performance standards.

Since most states have agreed to implement the Common Core State Standards, thousands of teachers in US schools are now under immense pressure to make sure that each student is ready by the time they graduate.

Advocates for Common Core argue that the new standards are more demanding and will better prepare students for college. The critics of the new standards think that they limit creativity in classrooms and define what “good” writing looks like. They also say that some of the new standards are virtually impossible to reach within a reasonable amount of time (because of the amount of information to be learned and assessed). Many state governors are also unhappy with the new standards because they had to cut some existing educational programs to fund Common Core.

This article will explore both sides of the argument and list out some pros and cons of these standards.

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The pros of the Common Core Standards

Common core standards are more rigorous and require students to learn a lot. But is this going to make the US educational system better? Here are some of the pros of Common Core Standards:

1. Critical Thinking

Enhances critical thinking skills, deeper learning and encourages in-depth research on a topic. According to one study conducted among teachers, it was revealed that education students who were taught under the new standards scored higher (58%) in a critical thinking test than those in states that were not using Common Core (21%).

2. Teachers Collaboration

Gives teachers a better understanding of what they need to teach and also encourages collaboration. Teachers feel more confident because they know exactly what is expected from them and their students. When there is total alignment between standards, curriculum, and tests, teachers don’t have to worry about students going in different directions.

3. Students organization

 Helps students pre-plan their writing assignments and understand where they are headed with writing.

Before the Common Core standards were implemented in most schools, many students would just start an essay without knowing what they are supposed to write about.

The standards of Common Core now encourage students to start a paper by considering the question or topic they are given and plan their writing. This will help them develop writing and critical thinking skills over time and eventually prepare them for college-level work.

4. In depth Understanding of Literature

 Helps students develop a more in-depth understanding of history and literature. The new standards are based on evidence, which essentially means that students need to think about what information they have read or learned before writing an assignment.

For instance, if a student wants to write a history paper about Abraham Lincoln, they will first need to consider the information they already know about him and then use evidence from their research to support it. In literature, students will need to produce strong arguments supported by facts and details rather than just their own opinionated views.

5. International Standards

Common core standards ensure the United States competes favorably internationally since they were set after a series of international benchmarking. Many say that the new standards may not be perfect, but they are definitely an improvement from the previous ones.

6. Stability in Schools

 The new standards will help ensure some schools are stable with the way they are implemented. This is because there will be a uniformity of standards in most states that have accepted Common Core, making it easier for teachers to teach and students to learn.

7. Prepare Students for College

The Common Core Standards are more rigorous, which means kids who make it through these standards will be better prepared for college.

Common Core Standards have been adopted by over 40 states and are now being implemented in schools, albeit with some criticism.

While these standards may or may not be perfect, a lot of educators say that they are better than the previous ones used in most secondary schools.

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The Cons of the Common Core Standards

Some teachers say that certain standards in the Common Core are not yet developed enough to be implemented in schools.

Here are some of the cons of Common Core Standards:

1. Confusion

There is a lot of confusion about the Common Core since over 40 states have adopted it, but each state can interpret them differently. This means that the Common Core Standards are not being implemented in a uniform fashion across the country, which can result in confusing the student and the education system.

2. Stresses Memorization

The new standards may force students to memorize information without developing critical thinking and writing skills. For instance, math equations will need to be learned by heart instead of understanding why they work the way they do. This will make it harder for students to apply the math equations they learn in real life.

3. Transition Difficulty

There is a difficulty in transition for students and teachers to the new set of standards. This is because both teachers and students will have to get accustomed to the new way of teaching. Changes may also need to be made if the old curriculum or textbooks are still being used or if teachers are not trained in the Common Core material yet.

4. Increased Rigor

In some states, the standards have increased rigor in school work and are seen to be too difficult. However, some teachers say it is just a matter of getting used to the new way of teaching.

5. Special Needs Students Left Out

 Students with special needs may find the new standards difficult to follow because they have not been well thought out. Furthermore, some parents and teachers say that the standards are not appropriate for students requiring special attention.

6. Costly

 Implementing new Common Core Standards has forced states to spend more money on textbooks and other learning materials. This is because they are now being updated to match the new curriculum in use in schools. However, this will mean that education will be more expensive in places where textbooks are being bought.

7. Standards Too Vague

Some teachers argue that the common score standards are too vague with no specifics on implementing them. Also, it can be hard for students to understand how exactly standardized tests should be scored. This makes it harder for teachers to do their job in the classroom.

8. Less Rigorous in Comparison to Previous Standards

The standards might also be less rigorous when compared to other previous standards. This is because the previous standards had more specifics on what students should learn, making it easier to evaluate how well they have learned. However, this may change as Common Core Standards are being revised by panels of educators.

9. Emphasis on Tests

Some critics say that the focus will be now standardized test scores instead of teaching to a diverse group of students. This is because there are many standardized test scores, making it easier to track how well students are learning and compare results with other schools.


The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) have been a hot topic of debate for years now, and it’s not clear whether or not they are beneficial. Weighing the pros against the cons can help you make your decision on if CCSS is something that will be helpful to implement in your school district.

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