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Parents’ Guides to Student Success—Frequently Asked Questions

National PTA partnered with experts on the Common Core State Standards to create grade by grade guides that reflect the Common Core State Standards that more than 45 states have adopted.

Created for grades K-8 high school English language arts/literacy and mathematics the guides provide clear, consistent expectations for what students should be learning at each grade in order to be prepared for college and career.

What language are the Guides available in?

The Guide is available in both English and Spanish.

Who received hard copies of the Guides?
State and local PTA Presidents in states that have adopted or provisionally adopted the Standards will receive one set of the guides by February 28, 2011. State and local PTA presidents in states that have not adopted the Standards will not receive hard copies of the Guide until the Standards are adopted in their states, however, they can be accessed online in the interim at PTA.org/ParentsGuide.

How can I get copies of the Guides?
National PTA produced over 270,000 copies of the Guide which were distributed to state and local PTA Presidents in states that have adopted or provisionally adopted the Standards. To access additional copies you may download them at PTA.org/ParentsGuide.

When will the Standards be adopted in my state?
Currently the Standards have been adopted in more than 40 states, but please know that the implementation of the Standards is still in the very early stages. Each state that has adopted or provisionally adopted the Standards is working to develop its own timeline and plan to implement the Standards, which will likely occur over the next few years. To find out if your state has adopted the Standards visit CoreStandards.org/in-the-states.

As a PTA leader, what should I do with the Guide?
State and local PTAs are receiving copies of the Guide because we want to encourage our PTA leaders to start having conversations with their state departments of education and their school district administrators about how PTA can partner with them on the implementation of the Standards.

The goal is for PTA leaders to collaborate together with the education administrators to develop a strategy to share the Guide along with any other pertinent information with all of the parents and caregivers in your community, once the Standards are fully implemented. Ultimately, the aim is that the Guide will be a tool for parents to build relationships with their children’s teachers once the Standards are fully in place.

Is it time for parents to start talking to teachers about the Standards? What should parents do?
Ultimately, the Guide will be a great tool to share with parents so they can more effectively talk to their child’s teacher about the Standards. But until the Standards are implemented (which will take one to three years or more depending on the state), the Guide will help parents understand what changes are coming and will help PTA leaders partner with education administrators to implement the Standards.

What are the Common Core State Standards?
The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a state-led effort coordinated by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO).

Created by teachers, parents, education experts and others from across the country, the Standards provide clear consistent expectations for what students should be learning at each grade in order to be prepared for college and career.

Why is PTA supporting the Common Core State Standards?
As the largest volunteer child advocacy organization—with membership of more than four million parents, families, students and teachers—PTA is uniquely positioned to be an influential, credible non-partisan voice in the initiative. CCSSI is well aligned with PTA’s public policy priority of equity and opportunity for all children.

PTA has been a leader on this work since 2009 when we began work in eight states to support the adoption and implementation of the Standards. Through the release of the Guide, PTA is continuing to stay on the forefront of this important work in ensuring that all students have access to a high quality education.

Who do I contact if I have additional questions?
Contact National PTA at (800) 307-4782,  info@pta.org.