News 12 This Morning / Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012
EVANS, Ga. -- Students filling the hallways are getting used to a new schedule and a new way of learning.
For the first time in history, students in Columbia County -- and throughout Georgia -- will study the same curriculum as students in other states across the country.
"They have been working on these last two years getting prepared for it," said Don Brigdon, principal of Evans High School.
Principals like Brigdon are working with their math and English teachers to implement the new common core curriculum.
"Focusing more on writing in language arts, learning vocabulary through context, no more lists of vocabulary words," Brigdon said.
Sharon Carson, the director of student learning, explained, "They are going to be coming out of the gate first day of school, this is what our first unit is going to be, but it's a work in progress."
For students it'll be more about understanding the material and less about memorizing formulas in class.
"They are going to have to learn to read it, to understand it, write about it, compare and contrast using higher order thinking," Carson said.
Which means even math tests could include writing portions where students will have to explain their answers.
"Another change, probably not going to read an entire novel in its entirety. It'll take supporting parts of novels," Brigdon said.
It's a curriculum 46 other states are adopting, which means if your family is moving into the school district or out of it, your student will be on the same page no matter where they go.
"It's gonna be less of a stress on military families," Carson said.
Teachers and students are learning the new system as they go.
"What we anticipate is a little decline in scores. Until this point, especially in Columbia County, our scores are really high," Carson said.
There could be a slight learning curve. The first major benchmark will be the CRCT students take in the spring.