BRIEFING: Better than Common Core: Floridas New K-12 Standards Raise the Bar, by Ze'ev Wurman, David M. Steiner, Ashley Rogers Berner and R. James Milgram
Independent Institute Senior Fellow Dr. Williamson M. Evers is interviewed by Independent Executive Director Dr. Graham H. Walker on Florida's new K-12 curriculum standards compared with Common Core State Standards.
In February 2020, the state of Florida published its new K-12 educational standards in English language arts (ELA) and mathematics, as promised by Governor Ron DeSantis a year earlier. DeSantis promised that the new standards will be a real departure from the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) that swept the nation in 2010 with only cursory review and without any serious validation, and the new Florida standards, dubbed B.E.S.T. for Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking, deliver on his promise.
The Independent Institute decided to commission its own review of Floridas B.E.S.T. standards, in which the evaluation would be performed on the basis of research and empirical evidence rather than on the basis of alignment with CCSS. The Independent ELA team found the Florida B.E.S.T. standards to be the strongest standard in ELA currently in use in the United States, and that with modest additions and clarifications, the Florida standards can stand as a new model for the country.