It is probably far too soon to know whether the Common Core succeeded or failed, but the studies are beginning to appear.

The adoption of the Common Core standards was a central requirement of the Obama-Duncan Race to the Top program. States had to agree to adopt the Common Core if they wanted to be eligible to compete for $5 billion in federal funds. The Gates Foundation paid for the Common Core, from its writing to its implementation, at a cost estimated between hundreds of millions to $2 billion. (If anyone can determine how much money Bill Gates plowed into the CCSS, I will salute them on this blog). Arne Duncan could not pay for them because federal law bars any federal official from influencing curriculum or instruction. But Duncan did pay $360 million to pay for two testing consortia to develop new tests for the CCSS. PARCC and Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium.  Almost every state signed up for Race to the Top. Almost all adopted the Common Core. Almost all signed up to use one or both of the new tests.

The whole venture cost the states many billions of dollars. New standards. New tests. New materials. New software and hardware. New professional development.

The Common Core came with dramatic promises about improving test s ores and closing achievement gaps.

Were these promises kept?

No.Since 2007, NAEP scores have gone flat. The lowest achieving students lost ground.

Matt Barnum reports here on a study that found that the Common Core made no difference.

“A new study, released in April through a federally funded research center, shows that states that changed their standards most dramatically by adopting the Common Core didn’t outpace other states on federal NAEP exams. By 2017 — seven years after most states had adopted them — the standards appear to have led to modest declines in fourth-grade reading and eighth-grade math scores.”

Most states have dropped out of the two federally-funded testing consortia, which arbitrarily set their passing marks so high that most students were certain to “fail.”