How Do Fearless Leaders Approach Common Core Standards?


Fearless leaders embrace the goals reflected in the Common Core State Standards by “gifting” each student with the learning experiences and opportunities that were once reserved only for the “gifted,” says Yvette Jackson, in this interview. Preview Jackson’s new ASCD book (coauthored with Veronica McDermott), Aim High, Achieve More: How to Transform Urban Schools Through Fearless Leadership.


  1. Fearless leaders need to approach common core standards by building a solid foundation. Students are learning concepts that with time forget them because there is not enough practice.

  2. It’s so important for all teachers, not just teacher-leaders, to get behind the Common Core. Nor is the Common Core just for getting students college and career ready. These new standards are a teachers dream come true and the necessary focus points to get students ready for a democratic and socially attune life. If we as educators want to take back control of our classrooms and our schools, we need to open our eyes and really dig into these standards. They focus solely on skills students need – not the content-driven, regurgitation system we have been endorsing for so long.

    Now kids can really start to sink their teeth into the meat of our departments because we can train them HOW to study and live in our content. The content comes to life, and we can finally dive into the depth behind it rather than always just skimming the surface. And if we want it to stay this way, we TEACHERS need to grab the reigns and drive this movement forward – rather than allowing the state of federal government taking hold of the reform movement and messing it up…again (Anyone remember NCLB….you get my meaning – good in theory, awful in implementation.)


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