Impending Literary Battle in Common Core?

NOTHING IN COMMON: That’s what the recent spat between Diane Ravitch and College Board president David Coleman would have you believe about the abundance of non-fiction and lack of fictional works suggested in Common Core standards. In a NYT op-ed, Sara Mosle breaks down the crux of the argument succinctly: “..namely that nonfiction is seldom literary and certainly not literature.” Team Ravitch contends that a lack of fiction makes it difficult to develop well-rounded minds. Team Coleman maintains that non-fiction writing and reasoning is exactly what’s needed to compete for jobs in the information age. For her part, Mosle doesn’t believe more nonfiction is necessary--70% of 12th grade CCSS standards consist of reading nonfiction titles--she just wants better nonfiction: “There are anthologies of great literature and primary documents, but why not “30 for Under 20: Great Nonfiction Narratives?” What a novel idea?! Who knows, perhaps one day EdSurge will make the CCSS reading list!

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