FAQ about the Common Core and SFUSD's Implementation
The Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSM)
SFUSD Implementation
Why is SFUSD developing Units of Study?
Will there be a textbook adoption?
Is our curriculum Williams Settlement Compliant?
How were the Units of Study developed?
How will the Units of Study be delivered to teachers and students?
Will the units be translated into different languages?
What kind of professional development will be offered on the Units of Study?
How do we deal with the gaps in content knowledge as we move from the CA Standards to CCSSM?
Will there be a textbook adoption?
Is our curriculum Williams Settlement Compliant?
How were the Units of Study developed?
How will the Units of Study be delivered to teachers and students?
Will the units be translated into different languages?
What kind of professional development will be offered on the Units of Study?
How do we deal with the gaps in content knowledge as we move from the CA Standards to CCSSM?
Assessment
Helping Students
Secondary Course Sequence
What is the new course sequence for middle grades and high school?
How do the CCSS Math 8 and CCSS Algebra 1 courses compare to the old Algebra 1 course?
Is CCSS Math 8 the same as the old 8th grade PreAlgebra course?
Can students skip CCSS Math 8 and go straight into CCSS Algebra 1?
Will students still be able to take AP Calculus in high school?
How do the CCSS Math 8 and CCSS Algebra 1 courses compare to the old Algebra 1 course?
Is CCSS Math 8 the same as the old 8th grade PreAlgebra course?
Can students skip CCSS Math 8 and go straight into CCSS Algebra 1?
Will students still be able to take AP Calculus in high school?
What are the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics?

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics are a coherent, focused, and rigorous progression of mathematics learning from Kindergarten through Advanced Algebra.
The Common Core State Standards are the result of a national initiative launched by the National Association of State Governors and the National Association of State School Superintendents to create unified standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics based on researching the standards of highachieving countries. They are voluntary for states to adopt, and at this point California and fortyfour other states have adopted them. All schools in SFUSD are expected to fully implement the the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. 
Where can I find more information about Common Core?

Common Core State Standards Initiative: http://www.corestandards.org/
CA Department of Education: http://www.cde.ca.gov/re/cc/ Council of the Great City Schools: http://cgcs.schoolwires.net/ Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium: http://www.smarterbalanced.org/ Achieve the Core: http://achievethecore.com Illustrative Mathematics: http://www.illustrativemathematics.org The Hunt Institute: http://www.huntinstitute.org/educationinitiatives/shapingrigorousworldclasseducationstandards/ 
What are the big shifts from the CA standards?

The 1997 California Standards for Mathematics included numerous topics per grade level and an emphasis on procedural fluency. In contrast, the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics include fewer topics in more depth, a more thoughtful progression of concepts throughout the grades, and a balance of emphasis between conceptual understanding, procedural fluency, and application of mathematics. Find out more here.

How do we deal with the gaps in content knowledge as we move from the CA Standards to CCSSM?

We are in the process of identifying critical gaps for units that have big shifts in content. Our plan is to use some of the tasks and lessons from other grades to fill in the gaps. We expect this need for the first two years of implementation.

Why is SFUSD developing Units of Study?

The introduction of new standards gives SFUSD a unique opportunity to define a coherent, focused, and rigorous math curriculum. Our Core Curriculum and Units of Study are defined by the Common Core State Standards and grounded in rich mathematical experiences, rather than being defined by a specific textbook. Read about recent research on textbook alignment to the CCSS.

Will there be a textbook adoption?

Not in the next few years. The Core Curriculum Units will be the districtsupported curriculum until the next materials adoption. Read SFUSD moves beyond textbooks: Superintendent Carranza comments on how the new standards influence what student materials look like.

Is our curriculum Williams Settlement Compliant

Yes. With the implementation of SFUSD's Core Curriculum for Mathematics, the district is redefining the core instructional materials in math. The delivery system associated with our new curriculum is not a traditional textbook. Rather, the SFUSD Core Curriculum is provided to teachers and students both digitally and in hard copy.
According to the California Department of Education, schools are not obligated to provide a hard copy of the instructional materials, but we are required to provide access to the curriculum at school and home. We provide school access through the provision of hard copy materials in class. Home access is available digitally, for those families with internet access at home, through School Loop, as well as sf.textbooks.cpm.org for secondary students. For families without internet access at home, teachers need to provide hardcopies for students to take home. For more information, see questions 30 and 31 from the California Department of Education’s Instructional Materials FAQ about sufficiency of instructional materials (also known as “Williams Settlement”). 
How were the Units of Study developed?

Approximately 120 SFUSD teachers were recruited to deeply explore their grade level standards and the Standards for Mathematical Practice. Using the Pearson Foundation Scope and Sequence and the Unit Task Model as their guides, these teachers created Units of Study Drafts that were piloted by hundreds of teachers during the 201314 academic year. In 201415, all schools used the Core Curriculum Units as the basis for their math program. After its first revision cycle, the improved units are, again, forming the basis for the SFUSD Math Curriculum.

How are the units delivered to teachers and students?

All SFUSD Math Core Curriculum teacher pages are being delivered to sites. Some sites have chosen to have student materials pages centrally, and some will print their own. All teacher pages are available electronically to teachers via School Loop. Student pages are available to students and parents via School Loop.

Will the units be translated into different languages?

All student pages in grades K5 have been translated into Spanish or Chinese. In classrooms where the language of instruction is Spanish or Chinese, if the school chose to have pages printed, the student pages will be provided in those target languages.

What kind of professional development will be offered on the Units of Study?

Every school in SFUSD has a team of Teacher Leaders who participated a 3 day summer institute to learn about the revised units of study and deepen their understanding of the CCSSM, as well as to develop their leadership and capacity to support collaborative planning at their sites. Content. Every school will receive support from a Math Content Specialist in the Math Department throughout the year.
Additionally, the Math Department will provide regular professional development, open to all teachers in the district, to strengthen the content knowledge and pedagogical practice. 
What will report cards look like?

Elementary schools will continue to use standardsbased report cards based on the Common Core Standards for Mathematics. The report card for each grade contain the mathematics domains in the grade level CCSSM, as well as cluster standards which provide more description. Students will be assessed on each standard using a Proficiency Level Key which is divided into 4 performance levels. Please see the AAO website (SFUSD employees only) for more info.
Middle school and high school progress reports are not changing at this time. 
What are the Interim Assessments?

During the interim assessments, the focus will be on the administration of robust constructed response tasks. In math, these will be designated Milestone Tasks within the Core Curriculum. These tasks will provide teachers with evidence of what students are able to do, as well as a rich common foundation for collaboration and calibration of expectations of student work. Districtwide professional development on scoring and calibration of these tasks will be offered. In addition to constructed response tasks, SFUSD will also use the new Interim Assessment Blocks (IABs) provided by Smarter Balanced.

Where can I get more information about state testing/SBAC?

The Smarter Balanced website contains information on the SBAC assessment, including how to take the SBAC Practice Test. Go to http://www.smarterbalanced.org/.
The Research, Planning and Accountability Department at SFUSD has extensive information about endofyear testing in SFUSD. For parents, please see this FAQ: http://tinyurl.com/SFUSDSBAC For teachers, please go here: https://district.sfusd.edu/dept/rpa/aao/SA/default.aspx 
How can I help my child with homework?

Homework might look different with the Common Core Curriculum. Students may be asked to demonstrate mathematical practices such as making sense of problems and constructing viable arguments. Here are some conversations you can have with your student when he or she is working on homework:
“Let’s reread the directions together.” “What is the problem asking you to do?” “Tell me what you do understand about this problem.” “Explain to me how you got your answer.” “Can you make a drawing that shows your thinking?” “Can you say more about that?” Please see the Parent Resources page for more information. 
What help will there be for struggling students?

The development and implementation of common core content standards and goals incorporates the principles of UDL. UDL is an approach to instruction that responds to our understanding about how the brain works by providing multiple pathways for each learner to access content and experience success.
Curricula (goals, methods, materials, and assessments) designed using UDL put an emphasis on creating effective, flexible goals, and the Common Core Standards provide an important framework for thinking about what goals will be most effective. UDL not only applies to students with disabilities, it applies to all other learners as well. All students can benefit from the types of instruction used to reach learners “on the margins,” as the learning needs of all individuals vary a great deal. As such, UDL should be used within inclusive general education classrooms. Our units and professional development provide support for all SFUSD students, including our English Language Learners (ELLs) and our historically underserved students. Find out more. 
What is the new course sequence for middle grades and high school?

This is the course sequence adopted by the SFUSD board.
This course sequence ensures a solid middlegrades foundation that not only supports all students to successfully meet the UC “c” requirement, but also prepares them for college mathematics. One core sequence provides focus and coherence as schools and teachers implement the CCSSM and supports equity by creating a path for all students to experience rigorous mathematics.

How do the CCSS Math 8 and CCSS Algebra 1 courses compare to the old Algebra 1 course?

The standards that defined an Algebra 1 course under the old California standards are now divided between the CCSS Math 8 course and the CCSS Algebra 1 course, as shown below. CCSS Math 8 and CCSS Algebra 1 courses also include content from more advanced high school courses and concepts not previously taught in high school math, especially statistics.

Is CCSS Math 8 the same as the old 8th grade PreAlgebra course?

No. CCSS Math 8 is much more rigorous than the 8th grade math courses of the past, and covers many standards that used to be part of Algebra 1. The old PreAlgebra course primarily reviewed standards taught in earlier grades—fractions, decimals, and percents, ratios and proportions, equations, and geometric measurement—which remain the focus of Common Core courses in earlier grades. The content of CCSS Math 8 is based on standards from three main domains: Algebra and Functions (about 65%), Geometry (about 25%), and Statistics (about 10%).

Can students skip CCSS Math 8 and go straight into CCSS Algebra 1?

CCSS Math 8 introduces extensive new mathematics content. The content of the middle grades course sequence (CCSS Math 6, CCSS Math 7, and CCSS Math 8) is essential for preparing students for both CCSS Algebra 1 and CCSS Geometry in high school. The authors of the Common Core developed an intentional vertical connection of algebraic and geometric topics from grades K8 through high school. CCSS Algebra 1 builds on the content students learn in CCSS Math 8 and does not repeat content from CCSS Math 8.
CCSS Algebra 1 is also much more rigorous than the old CA Algebra 1. It assumes students have already worked with linear equations and functions and then extends their study of nonlinear functions to include quadratic and exponential functions—topics that were introduced in Advanced Algebra in the past. The CCSS Algebra 1 course also includes a significant focus on statistics and applying algebraic tools to solve complex, realworld problems. However, for this transition year of 20152016, all middle school students transferring to SFUSD high schools were able to take the CCSS Algebra I Validation Exam. If they pass, they will be enrolled in CCSS Geometry during their 9th grade year. This option was available to all students whether they have taken a course labeled Algebra 1, or not. This test validates knowledge of content in both CCSS Math 8 and CCSS Algebra 1. Not all students will have had the opportunity to learn all of this content and therefore many students and their families chose not to take the exam. 
Will students still be able to take AP Calculus in high school?

Yes, by doubling up or compressing courses in high school. Due to the essential nature of all CCSS courses, students can no longer accelerate in math by skipping a course. The current district plan includes the option to accelerate in high school by compressing CCSS Algebra 2 with Precalculus into a oneyear course.
Most students who wish to take AP Calculus, either AB or BC, will take the course in their 12th grade year. Most students will progress through the following sequence:
If a student wishes to take AP Calculus in their senior year without taking the compression course, there are 2 options that both include “doublingup”: Option 1:
Option 2:
In either Option 1 or Option 2 above, Geometry is the course that can be “stacked” with another course since the content of Geometry is reliant on CCSS Grade 8 Math, not Algebra 1, and Algebra 2 does not rely on Geometry content. The few students who wish to take AP Calculus during their 11th grade year may double up in either 9th or 10th grade and take the Algebra 2/Precalculus Compression course: Option 1:
Option 2:
The same reasoning for doubling up with Geometry applies to the sequences above. Students can also take a different AP course, AP Statistics, without doubling up or compression. 