The New Jersey Core Curriculum
Content Standards include Preschool Teaching and Learning
Standards as well as K-12 standards for: Visual and
Performing Arts; Comprehensive Health and Physical Education;
Science; Social Studies; World Languages; Technology; and
21st-Century Life and Careers. Standards for
Mathematics and Language Arts Literacy
are part of the Common Core State Standards
initiative coordinated by the Council of Chief States School
Officers (CCSSO) and the National Governor’s Association (NGA) in
partnership with other national organizations.
The State of New Jersey, along with 44 other States, has adopted the
Common Core State Standards (CCSS). These standards were developed
in collaboration with teachers, school administrators, and other
experts, to provide a clear and consistent framework to prepare our
children for college and the workforce. The New Jersey Core
Curriculum Content Standards implemented in 1996 were the first
attempt to bring consistency and rigor across schools in the state.
These New Jersey standards are still in place in all areas except
Language Arts and Mathematics. The Language Arts and Mathematics
standards for New Jersey are now the Common Core State Standards.
All Clifton Public Schools Curriculum follow the Common Core and New
Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards.
The major shifts in Mathematics under the
Common Core include:
• The Common Core State Standards emphasize coherence
at each grade level – making connections across content and between
content and mathematical practices in order to promote deeper
• The standards focus on key topics at each grade level
to allow educators and students to go deeper into the content.
• The standards also emphasize progressions across
grades, with the end of progression calling for fluency – or the
ability to perform calculations or solving problems quickly and
• The Standards for Mathematical Practice describe
mathematical “habits of mind” or mathematical applications and aim
to foster reasoning, problem solving, modeling, decision making, and
engagement among students.
• Finally, the standards require students to
demonstrate deep conceptual understanding by applying them to new
The major shifts in Language Arts
under the Common Core include:
• In Reading, the major advances are the shift away
from literature-focused standards to a balance of literature and
informational texts to reflect college- and career-ready
expectations. There is also a greater focus on text complexity and
at what level students should be reading.
• In Writing, there is a strong emphasis on argument
and informative/ explanatory writing, along with an emphasis on
writing about sources or using evidence to inform an argument.
• The Common Core also include Speaking and Listening
expectations, including a focus on formal and informal talk, which
can be done through presentations and group work.
• The Language standards put a stress on both general
academic and domain-specific vocabulary.
• The Common Core also address reading, writing and
literacy across the curriculum, and include
literacy standards for science, social studies and technical
subjects. These standards complement rather than replace
content standards in those subjects, and are the responsibility of
teachers in those specific disciplines, making literacy a shared
responsibility across educators.
In addition, New Jersey has joined the
Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and
Career (PARCC). PARCC is a consortium of more than 20
states and Washington, DC working together to develop a common set
of K-12 assessments in language arts and math aligned to the Common
Core State Standards. These new K-12 assessments will mark students’
progress and provide teachers with timely information to inform
instruction and provide student support. The PARCC assessments will
be administered during the 2014-15 school year. Clifton Public
Schools has been selected to field test certain portions of the
PARCC assessments during the 2013-2014 school year. The information
below is designed to provide parents and community members with the
most up-to-date information on the Common Core State Standards and
the Partnership for Assessments of Readiness for College and Careers
This three-minute video explains how the
Common Core State Standards will help students achieve at high
levels and help them learn what they need to know to get to
graduation and beyond.
Common Core State Standards Explained - Video
English Language Arts