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Conflict Within The State Board Of Education May Delay Revising Education Standards

Superintendent Glenda Ritz has been at odds with the rest of the State Board of Education for months, and now some Board members say they’re worried the ongoing dispute will delay important work revising Indiana’s academic standards.

When state lawmakers paused rollout of the Common Core in the spring, they gave the State Board of Education a July 1, 2014, deadline to revisit Indiana’s academic standards.

In theory, state education officials could keep the nationally-crafted standards Indiana adopted back in 2010. But Republican leaders say they’d rather see the state exit the Common Core initiative and develop its own expectations for what students should know and learn at each grade level.

State Superintendent Glenda Ritz says that work is already happening as technical teams reviewing the math and English language arts standards. Ritz says “keep in mind we’re working from the standards we are currently teaching. So there will be revisions to those standards. The plan is for— the timeline is hopefully the State Board of Education will have final approval in April.”

But State Board Secretary Dan Elsener say other Board members want to take a more active role in the review process and aren’t as confident they’ll have new standards in place for next school year.

Elsener says “that’s another thing I wish we would be much more productive on. We’ve been trying

to get to the Common Core standards for months. The last time we tried to deal with it, the superintendent got up and left the room. 14.”

Ritz abruptly adjourned the Board’s November meeting over a motion to insert State Board staff into the Common Core review process. Ritz called the motion improper, but the Attorney General has since said it could stand.