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State officials defend new Common Core standards

WBFO News file photo

The State Board of Regents isn't backing off on its Common Core system. The new standards have been criticized since the spring when new standardized tests produced drastically lower scores.Robert Bennett, Chancellor Emeritus of the State Board of Regents, said the State Education Department is working across the board, from supporting elementary school students, who didn't do well on the tests, to high school students who face exams in the spring based on the Common Core.

College and university training programs are preparing teachers to  incorporate the new rules.

"We call this a new baseline from which we would hope the Common Core will continue to grow. A ton of extra help is on (the website) Engage New York," Bennett said. 

"With Student Learning Objectives now a requirement, negotiated locally by the way, with Teacher Evaluation in place, with Principal Evaluation in place, there are no more excuses. Period," Bennett said.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.