Governor signs rigorous education standards into law

Maine is 42nd state to approve Common Core state standards, allowing schools and teachers to plan their curriculum.

AUGUSTA — Maine became the 42nd state to approve the Common Core state standards when Gov. Paul LePage signed L.D. 12 into law on Friday. The measure passed both the House and Senate unanimously. Adopting the standards means Maine teachers will have a clear set of standards to work with, and will be able to tailor their teaching to the new, rigorous expectations of what students should know and be able to do.

All but two states collectively developed and plan to adopt the core set of academic standards in mathematics and English Language Arts. Released June 2, 2010, the Common Core standards build directly on recent efforts of leading organizations and states to focus on developing college- and career-ready standards and ensure these standards are evidence- and research-based and internationally benchmarked to top-performing countries.

By adopting the Common Core standards, Maine schools will be able to take advantage of a vast web of new curriculum resources leading text book producers are developing to align with the new standards.

Standards do not tell teachers how to teach, but they do help teachers identify the knowledge and skills their students should have so educators can develop appropriate instructional planning. Standards also help students and parents by setting clear and realistic goals for success.

“We need to give students and teachers clear expectations,” said Stephen Bowen, Commissioner of Education. “As I’ve been traveling around the state, I have heard it over and over from teachers – they want us to adopt the Common Core. They are rigorous, and there is a sense there will be staying power to these standards so they can work with them for some time to come.”

Forty-one states and the District of Columbia have adopted the Common Core Standards to date.