Chang Esau: Support higher expectations for all children in Ariz. schools - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Opinion

Chang Esau: Support higher expectations for all children in Ariz. schools

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Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014 12:45 pm | Updated: 1:05 pm, Fri Feb 7, 2014.

Too few Arizona students graduate from high school prepared for college, career and life. Did you know that just 7 out of 10 students graduate from high school, and of those who do, more than half aren’t eligible for admission into a state university? What’s more, 42 percent of employers say that their employees lack the basic skills needed to be successful in the workplace.

It’s time to Aim Higher. It’s time we join thousands of educators and families across Arizona in supporting higher expectations for all children so they will be better prepared for life after high school. This starts with the Arizona’s College and Career Ready Standards (Common Core) and a new assessment that will provide a strong foundation to better prepare our students for college and career.

The standards will better prepare all students for college and career. They will raise the bar to ensure our students are prepared for the jobs of the future and can compete with their peers from around the world for the best jobs. A new assessment will replace AIMS, which is now outdated, and will give our educators a tool to help students learn.

Expect More Arizona supports the implementation of these standards and a new assessment, which is why we’ve partnered with the Arizona Public Engagement Task Force to launch Arizona Aims Higher, a new campaign to help parents, educators, and community and business leaders learn more and to take action to support the standards and assessment.

We must work together to ensure that all students receive a world-class education in Arizona. Arizona’s College and Career Ready Standards and an aligned assessment will help us get there.

Visit ArizonaAimsHigher.org to learn more and find out how you can get involved. In addition, it’s important for to voice your education-related desires with your local elected officials. With your help, we can provide all Arizona students with a world-class education.

• Pearl Chang Esau is president and chief executive officer of Expect More Arizona, a statewide, nonpartisan education advocacy organization.

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