With educators on the lookout for instructional materials that fit with the content and vision of the common-core standards, a new set of "publishers' criteria" aim to influence decisions by both the developers and purchasers of such offerings for high school mathematics.
Crafted by the lead writers of the math common core, the 20-page document issued seeks to "sharpen the alignment question" and make "more clearly visible" whether materials faithfully reflect both the letter and spirit of the math standards adopted by 45 states and the District of Columbia.
In addition, a revised set of K-8 criteria were released, with a variety of changes to the version first put out last summer based on feedback from the field (including districts that started to use them). One notable deletion was the explicit call for elementary math textbooks to not exceed 200 pages in length (and for middle and high school texts not to exceed 500 pages). Another change was to include more precise guidance on how much time should be devoted to the "major work" of the standards, differentiating in particular the K-2 level with that for the middle grades.
Both sets of criteria are endorsed by several prominent organizations that provided feedback, including national groups representing governors, chief state school officers, state boards of education, and large urban districts, as well as Achieve, the Washington-based nonprofit that managed the process for developing the Common Core State Standards.
"These criteria were developed from the perspective that publishers and purchasers are equally responsible for fixing the materials market," the high school document says.