Common Core State Standards by DR. RYAN KELLEY Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum Rockford Public Schools We continue to witness the impact of the challenging economic times upon our families, friends and neighbors. Many experts believe that the primary method to improve the economy is to have a higher educated workforce. A workforce that possesses the highly publicized 21st Century Skills—critical thinkers, problem solvers, communicators, and being collaborative, creative and innovative. No matter where a student lives, he/she should be provided these skills in order to be better prepared for postsecondary education and their career. As a result, the development and implementation of the Common Core State Standards is taking place across the country. The standards for math and English language arts can be reviewed online at www.corestandards.org. The standards in the other core subject areas are still in the developmental stages. We know that in Rockford we are already providing our students with a world-class educational experience, and they are college and career ready. However, we can always improve. To make certain that we are preparing our students for the implementation of the Common Core State Standards, we have many teachers and administrators working together with educators from across the state. If you would like more information about this topic, I invite you to access the Web address previously mentioned, or call me at (616) 863-6556.