By: Lauren LaMar
One policy issue that Georgia is consistently concerned with is quality education in the K-12 education system. The Georgia Department of Education is focused on the curriculum in state schools. Legislation has sought a mandate that state schools provide a comprehensive K-12 curriculum, which is tailored to all students. This mandate also aims to implement an instructional assessment program to serve the educational needs of the system’s students. The State Schools will also have a standards based approach to curriculum and instruction (Georgia Dept. of Education, 2015).
Athens, Georgia and other rural areas have the need to have substantial education and also obtain the necessary credentials that are essential for creating jobs and making sure Georgia is an economically growing place. In improving the educational standards and curriculums in schools, this will increase opportunities for higher education (Georgia Dept. of Education, 2015). Georgia can meet the challenge of ensuring that all students graduate from high school and are prepared to compete for good jobs and ready to contribute to the state’s economic growth.
The education policies passed in Georgia seek to decrease the k12 achievement gap that has yet to be fully remedied. The policy states that state schools will be able to provide a thorough K-12 curriculum, tailored to each student’s abilities. The curriculum needs to be instructional and serve the educational needs of the system’s students in a holistic and comprehensive way (Rothstein, 2004). The state schools will have a standards based approach to curriculum and instruction that will intend to act as a solution to the achievement gaps and low test scores in Georgia.
The key components in policy are poverty, equity, and fairness. The early learning workforce, student health, and the special challenges of Georgia’s rural schools are among the top 10 issues in education this year, according to the (Georgia Public Policy Foundation, 2015). This policy (Curriculum, State Schools) has acted as a support to the education disparities which are occurring in Athens, Clarke County. Improving the curriculum as a whole and making sure that teachers are qualified and knowledgeable within the school systems will critically have a positive impact on the students. Ultimately, out of this policy, we also hope to see student growth and improved instruction (Georgia Dept. of Education, 2015). There are rising inequalities within school systems, because of the curriculum, some students are not performing to the best of their abilities (Duncan, 2011). The Clarke County area hopes to see an increase in high school graduation, improvement in literacy and math, as well as aiding to close the achievement gap.
Department of Education (ED). (2015). Race to the Top. Georgia Report. Year 4: School Year 2013-2014. [State-Specific Summary Report]. US Department of Education. US Department of Education.
Duncan, G. J., & Murnane, R. J. (Eds.). (2011). Whither opportunity?: Rising inequality, schools, and children’s life chances. Russell Sage Foundation.
Georgia Public Policy Foundation. (2015).
Rothstein, Richard. Class and Schools: Using Social, Economic and Educational Reform to Close the Black- White Achievement Gap. Washington D.C.: Economic Policy Institute, 2004.