Social Studies Standards Update

Have you heard the news?

If I could only come up with a creative way to share the news to potentially prohibit the “out-loud eye rolling” that has become a normal reaction during the project.

Yea, you guessed it. The standards approval process has been extended, again.

For those of you who have not read or heard the news, it went national and made it to the Washington Post. It all started when writers from the Center for Michigan Bridges Magazine neglected to verify the accuracy of the information shared with them. Their clickbait title, coupled with inaccurate and misleading reporting, caused information to travel fast and the MDE Listen and Learn sessions filled up with protestors. Although I applaud the protestors taking seriously their role as responsible citizens, many unfortunately took the bait and just repeated everything in the article without reading the primary source documents. (If you are interested in some of the details you are welcome to send me an email and I can share my analysis of the inaccuracies.)

What now? For educators, stay the course with teaching the 2007 standards. Once the Listen and Learn sessions conclude September 30, the standards committee will go through literally hundreds of pages of comments, review over 3,400 online survey results, and revise accordingly. Fortunately, all of the items Bridges erroneously reported are already addressed in the revised standards. On the other hand, we will certainly be having some in-depth dialogue about other contentious points like the replacing of “American Democracy” with “Constitutional Republic” and the removal of “Democratic” from “Core Democratic Values”.

We have been told there is no definitive timeline right now, but we are of course speculating. Given it’s election season with two State Board of Education seats on the ballot and an appointment of the new State Superintendent sometime in February/March 2019, the revised standards likely will not end up on a meeting agenda for approval until April or May 2019.

The journey continues!




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