Texas’ English and mathematics college and career readiness standards meet and, in many cases, exceed national standards, a new analysis released found.

Teams of higher education and public school educators and content specialists conducted a comparison of the Texas College and Career Readiness Standards, adopted in January 2008, and the national Common Core College Readiness Standards created by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and the National Governors Association (NGA). President Barack Obama has proposed conditioning a state’s eligibility for federal education funding on either its adoption of these national standards or certification that a state’s standards are college and career ready.

Texas was the first state to adopt college readiness standards, concepts that are to be taught in the public schools that help prepare students for success in the workplace or in college or university courses. The standards were jointly created through a process that included Texas public education, higher education and business community stakeholders.

The comparison of the Texas and national standards, known as a “gap analysis” or crosswalk, found that the Texas standards contained everything that is included in the national standards. But the Texas standards are more comprehensive, covering additional areas of college readiness that are missing from the national standards.

Some examples of material found in the Texas standards but missing from the national standards are:

·        Analyze works of literature for what they suggest about the historical period and cultural context in which they were written;

·        Use effective reading strategies to determine a written work’s purpose and intended audience;

·        Identify and analyze the audience, purpose, and message of an informative or persuasive text;

·        Geometric reasoning that makes connections between geometry, statistics and probabilities;

·        Connecting mathematics to the study of other disciplines by using appropriate mathematical models in the natural, physical and social sciences.

A team of analysts for each subject area compared the Texas standards to the national standards to determine how much they were alike. To ensure an accurate and thorough comparison, another team reversed the process and compared the national standards to the Texas standards. An external evaluator then reviewed the teams’ methodology and work product.

The review focused only on English language arts and mathematics standards because those are the only subjects for which national Common Core standards have been prepared. Texas also has college and career readiness standards in social studies and science.

The findings from the gap analysis are available at: http://www.tea.state.tx.us/index2.aspx?id=8019.

The two documents that the teams based their findings on are available at: www.thecb.state.tx.us/collegereadiness/TCRS.cfm  and www.corestandards.org/Standards/index.htm