To get the transition to the Common Core State Standards right and realize their potential to prepare all students for college, career and life, AFT president Randi Weingarten has called for a moratorium on the stakes associated with Common Core assessments until the standards are properly implemented and field-tested.

Weingarten delivered this call in an April 30 speech sponsored by the Association for a Better New York, where she made clear that if implemented properly and in partnership with educators, the new, deeper Common Core standards for math and English language arts can transform teaching and learning and provide all children with the problem-solving, critical-thinking and teamwork skills they need to compete in today's changing world.

"If we're able to step on the accelerator of quality implementation, and put the brakes on the stakes, we can take advantage of this opportunity and guarantee that deeper, more rigorous standards will help lead to higher achievement for all children," Weingarten said.

Weingarten said a moratorium is necessary on the consequences of high-stakes tests to allow for midcourse corrections, as needed, in aligning the standards, curriculum, teacher training, instruction and assessments.

The AFT is urging members to contact U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and their state education commissioners to support the moratorium.