Standards-Based Education

What is Standards-Based Education?

Standards-based education refers to a system of learning that has clear goals (standards) for each of the content areas.  In Maine, academic expectations for public-school courses, content areas and grade levels are outlined in the Maine Learning Results which includes the Guiding Principles, expectations for cross-disciplinary skills and life-long learning, and eight sets of content-area standards, including the Common Core State Standards in English language arts and mathematics. These standards describe the knowledge and skills students need to demonstrate.  The standards do not prescribe how the content is taught nor how students demonstrate their learning.

The district, in-turn, reviews the state standards and develops the PreK-12 Expected Outcomes (EO’s).  The EO’s articulate the knowledge and skills all students are expected to demonstrate in order to graduate.  In the classroom, teachers develop units, lessons and assessments that are aligned to the EO’s. 

The general goal of standards-based education is to ensure that students acquire the knowledge and skills that are deemed to be essential to success in school, higher education, careers and adult life. If students struggle to meet minimum expected standards, they receive additional instruction, practice time and academic support.