Common Core Standards

We base what we teach at each grade level on Washington's learning standards. The state’s standards incorporate Common Core standards in math and language arts.

Common Core standards emphasize solving problems, thinking logically and thinking critically. For each grade level, the standards describe the skills students should have. Each year, students build on what they learned in the previous year. Students who stay on track with the standards will learn what they need to succeed beyond graduation.

The standards also help set clear and consistent expectations for students across the country. Textbooks and lessons may be different at each school. But students will learn the same set of skills whether they’re in Groton, Conn., or Silverdale, Wash.

Three-Minute Video Explaining the Common Core State Standards from CGCS Video Maker on Vimeo.

Development of Common Core

In 2009, state governors and school officers assembled a group of education experts. The group looked at existing state standards. They looked at what math and language arts skills people needed to succeed in college or careers. From there, the group decided how students could build those skills from kindergarten through grade 12. They asked teachers, parents, school administrators and others for their opinions.

Washington state adopted the standards in 2011. We introduced teachers to the standards and began professional development.  We fully implemented the standards in 2013.

Consistent Standards, Different Lessons

Schools in 42 states now share Common Core learning standards, but what you see in their classrooms may vary. Each school district can choose how they teach the standardized skills. Different school districts may adopt different curricula with different textbooks and lessons.

Learn More

Find out more about Common Core and ways to help your child succeed: