BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    






                            SENATE COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION
                                Alan Lowenthal, Chair
                              2011-2012 Regular Session
                                          

          BILL NO:       SB 1200
          AUTHOR:        Hancock
          INTRODUCED:    February 22, 2012
          FISCAL COMM:   Yes            HEARING DATE: April 25, 2012
          URGENCY:       No             CONSULTANT:    Lynn Lorber

           SUBJECT  :  Common core standards.
          
           SUMMARY
           
          This bill requires the State Board of Education to adopt the 
          common core college and career readiness anchor standards, and 
          modify the common core standards for 8th grade mathematics.

           BACKGROUND
           
          The State Board of Education (SBE) adopted common core standards 
          in English language arts and mathematics on August 2, 2010.  The 
          SBE adopted two distinct sets of standards for grade 8 
          mathematics, one that is the common core standards for grade 8 
          and one that is a combination of common core grade 8 and Algebra 
          I standards.  

          The SBE adopted common core standards in English language arts 
          and mathematics but did not adopt the college and career 
          readiness anchor standards that complement the grade-specific 
          content standards.  The anchor standards are broad and the 
          grade-specific standards provide more details.  It appears that 
          the anchor standards were not adopted due to uncertainty about 
          the SBE's authority to adopt anything other than content 
          standards.

          The SBE does not have broad statutory authority to review, 
          revise or adopt academic content standards.  The SBE was given 
          the authority, on a one-time basis, to adopt the existing 
          standards, including the common core standards in English 
          language arts and mathematics.  

           ANALYSIS
           
           This bill  requires the State Board of Education to adopt the 




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          common core college and career readiness anchor standards, and 
          modify the common core standards for 8th grade mathematics.  
          Specifically, this bill:

           8th grade mathematics common core standards
           
          1)   Requires a review of the common core standards for 8th 
               grade mathematics if the Superintendent of Public 
               Instruction (SPI) and the State Board of Education (SBE) 
               jointly find that there is a need to revise or modify those 
               standards.

          2)   Requires the SPI and SBE to notify, upon finding a need to 
               modify the 8th grade mathematics standards, the Governor, 
               Senate Rules Committee and the Speaker of the Assembly of 
               the reasons for the needed modifications and the need to 
               appoint members to the standards review commission.

          3)   Establishes an 11-member standards review commission to 
               review and recommend modifications to the 8th grade 
               mathematics standards, to be appointed as follows:

               a)        The Governor appoints four members.
               b)        The Senate Rules Committee appoints three 
               members.
               c)        The Speaker of the Assembly appoints three 
               members.
               d)        The SPI appoints one member.

          4)   Requires the recommendations of the standards review 
               commission and modifications approved by the SBE to ensure 
               all of the following:

                    a)             The rigor of the state common core 
                    standards is maintained so that all high school 
                    graduates are prepared for college and careers, as 
                    specified in the common core standards.

                    b)             All of the common core standards 
                    developed by the national Common Core Standards 
                    Initiative consortium are adopted.

                    c)             Modifications, including additions and 
                    revisions, amount to no more than 15% of the state 
                    common core standards adopted by the SBE.





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          5)   Requires the SBE, upon receiving recommendations from the 
               standards review commission, to do one of the following:

                    a)             Adopt the standards as proposed by the 
                    commission.

                    b)             Reject the standards.  If the SBE 
                    rejects the recommendations, it must provide to the 
                    SPI, Governor and appropriate policy and fiscal 
                    committees of the Legislature a specific written 
                    explanation of the reasons why the proposed standards 
                    were rejected.

                    c)             Revise the standards.  If the SBE 
                    revises the recommendations it must provide written 
                    reasons for its revisions in a public meeting.  The 
                    SBE must adopt the revisions at a subsequent meeting 
                    by June 30, 2013. 
           
          6)   Requires at least one-half of the members appointed by each 
               of the appointing bodies to be current public school 
               elementary or secondary classroom teachers.  The appointing 
               bodies must consult with each other to ensure that the 
               commission includes all of the following:

               a)        People with expertise in the subject area under 
               review.

               b)        People from different geographical areas of the 
               state.

               c)        People who reflect the ethnic and gender 
               diversity of California.

               d)        People who are knowledgeable about English 
               learners and pupils with 
                    disabilities.

          7)   Requires commission meetings and hearings to be open to the 
               public pursuant to the Bagley-Keene Open Meetings Act, and 
               provides that members are to serve at the pleasure of the 
               appointing body.

          8)   Requires the SPI and SBE to notify the Governor, Senate 
               Rules Committee and Speaker of the Assembly after the SBE 
               takes action on the recommendations submitted by the 




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               standards review commission.

           Anchor standards
           
          9)   Requires the SPI to recommend and the SBE to adopt the 
               college and career readiness anchor standards developed by 
               the Common Core Standards Initiative consortium. 

          10)  Authorizes the SBE to resolve any technical issues in the 
               common core standards.

           STAFF COMMENTS
           
           1)   Need for the bill  .  According to the author, "Several 
               implementation issues arise by California adopting a 
               different set of grade 8 math standards from other 
               participating states.  For example, instructional materials 
               for use in California would need to be different from those 
               used by other states - the unique additional standards may 
               increase the costs of those materials for our local school 
               districts.  In addition, assessment consortia will be 
               developing assessment aligned to the common core standards 
               and not the variation adopted in California.  This may 
               result in issues with our Algebra standards and curriculum 
               not being aligned with our assessment and accountability 
               system."

           2)   Problem is recognized  .  Two sets of grade 8 mathematics 
               standards may result in misalignment with any common 
               assessments that may be adopted in the future, and may also 
               result in challenges in the practical implementation of 
               having two different sets of standards and expectations for 
               pupils in the same grade level.  Additionally, the federal 
               No Child Left Behind requires pupils to be assessed on one 
               set of standards; it is expected that all pupils on the 
               same grade (except high school) are taught and assessed on 
               the same set of standards.

          The difficulties with having two sets of standards are now 
               widely recognized.  For example, SB 140 (Lowenthal, Ch. 
               623, 2011), which requires the development of a list of 
               supplemental instructional materials to bridge the gap 
               between current instructional materials and the common core 
               standards, specifically excludes materials for 8th grade 
               mathematics.





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           3)   Standards review commission  .  This bill establishes a 
               standards review commission for the purpose of recommending 
               to the SBE modifications to the 8th grade mathematics 
               standards.  Recent legislation (AB 124, Fuentes, Ch. 605, 
               2011) establishes a panel of experts to update, revise, and 
               align the English language development (ELD) standards to 
               the common core state standards in English language arts.  
               Further, SB 300 (Hancock, Ch. 624, 2011) required the SPI 
               to convene a panel of experts to recommend new science 
               content standards.  Should this bill convene a panel of 
               experts rather than a standards review commission?

           4)   Fiscal impact  .  It is estimated that this bill, as drafted 
               establishing a standards review commission, would impose 
               upon the California Department of Education a cost of 
               approximately $200,000.

           5)   Technical amendments  .  Clarify that SPI and SBE are to 
               notify the Governor and Legislature of the need, the 
               reasons for the needed modifications, and the need to 
               appoint members to the commission.  (Page 3, line 7)

          Clarify that the standards review commission is authorized only 
               to review and modify the 8th grade standards.  (Page 3, 
               line 36, after "only" insert "review")

           6)   Related legislation  .  AB 2116 (Lara) requires the CDE to 
               contract for a multiyear independent study of the 
               implementation of the common core standards.          AB 
               2116 is pending in the Assembly Education Committee.

           7)   Prior legislation  .  AB 1033 (Feuer) would have established 
               a content standards review commission to revise and modify 
               all or any of the academic content standards (including 8th 
               grade common core mathematics).  AB 1033 was held in the 
               Assembly Appropriations Committee.

           SUPPORT
           
          California School Boards Association
          California Teachers Association
          Superintendent of Public Instruction

           OPPOSITION

           None on file.




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