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On August 2, 2010, the California State Board of Education voted unanimously to adopt new standards for both Mathematics and English Language Arts. The new standards are rigorous, research‑based, and designed to prepare every student for success in college and the workforce. The standards are internationally benchmarked to ensure that our students are able to compete with students around the globe. Educational standards describe what students should know and be able to do in each subject in each grade. Since 2010, 45 states have adopted the same standards for English and math. These standards are called the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Having the same standards helps all students get a good education, even if they change schools or move to a different state. Teachers, parents, and education experts designed the CCSS to prepare students for success in college and the workplace. Although California'ʹs 1997 academic standards for English‑language arts and mathematics share many similarities in content and design with the new CCSS, it will take several years to implement the new standards. As a staff, we are well‑prepared for this shift, as our work with Harvard and Columbia is closely in line with the stronger focus on critical thinking and rigor present in the new standards. We continue to explore these concepts, and are focusing on common core mathematics as a professional learning community this year in each grade level. One big change we will see this year is that we will no longer take the end of the year STAR test as in years past. Instead, we will be field testing the new online assessment which often requires students to write short and long answers, manipulate images on the computer, or even highlight text to show evidence of reasoning. There will be no individual student scores or school scores reported this year. However, 5th grade students will still take the STAR science exam. We are excited to continue to learn and grow as an educational community as we embrace these new standards.