What is a performance standard?
Performance standards go into much greater depth than the content standards used in the previous curriculum. The performance standard incorporates the content standard, which simply told the teacher what a student was expected to know (i.e., what concepts he or she is expected to master), but expands upon it by providing three additional items: suggested tasks, sample student work, and teacher commentary on that work.
Performance standards provide clear expectations for assessment, instruction, and student work. They define the level of work that demonstrates achievement of the standards, enabling a teacher to know “how good is good enough.” The performance standards isolate and identify the skills needed to use the knowledge and skills to problem-solve, reason, communicate, and make connections with other information. Performance standards also tell the teacher how to assess the extent to which the student knows the material or can manipulate and apply the information.