How High Academic Standards Are Impacting NC Students

HIRE Standards represent the high academic standards needed in North Carolina’s schools to prepare students for the jobs of tomorrow. Cultivating a world-class workforce that is ready to compete globally in today’s modern economy starts in the classroom, as students develop the knowledge and skills they’ll one day need to successfully perform in their careers. Teachers across the state are noticing how high academic standards are changing the way their students learn and approach problem solving – an invaluable benefit to both the students and their future employers.

One of those teachers is Renee Gibbs, a math teacher at Rockingham County High School, who has been teaching for 19 years. Gibbs has witnessed her classroom transform from one that was teacher centered to one centered on her students, where inquiry-based lesson plans and tasks are utilized. Through the implementation of high academic standards, her students are making deeper connections and discovering greater conceptual understanding.

“The NC High School Math Standards have made an enormous, positive impact on me as a high school math teacher! The standards opened my eyes to the need and value of developing a conceptual understanding of mathematics for myself as well as for my students. Prior to the introduction of the standards of mathematical practices and the curriculum standards, procedural knowledge was really all I expected from my students. I was not even aware of all the connections that could help them move to deeper levels of understanding. I no longer use memory cues to help students ‘memorize.’ They now develop an understanding of the mathematics to help them think through problems,” said Gibbs.

As our competitive business climate evolves, it is incumbent upon our business community to support high standards that will provide students with 21st century career training opportunities and harvest the skills required to compete globally. Last month, the North Carolina State Board of Education approved new English Language Arts standards for the 2018-2019 school year and is expected to complete final revisions to the grades K through 8 math standards this summer – a process that has taken nearly six years and is making our already high standards stronger. We look forward to continuing to showcase the work of our state’s teachers as they implement these standards and updating you as the math standard revision process is completed.

Gary J. Salamido
Vice President, Government Affairs
North Carolina Chamber

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