Susan Ohanian notes that in a new supplement to Common Core Appendix A, the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers more or less conclude that all the half-dozen or so popular quantitative measures of text complexity are "close enough for government work," and provide a handy equivalence scale.
In particular she notes that this seems to implicitly (or explicitly) give a stamp of approval to Accelerated Reader's software's system of assigning texts to readers based on text complexity. Also, Renaissance Learning (creators of Accelerated Reader) is an Endorsing Partner of the Common Core State Standards.
This is all getting a little to Inside Elementary Literacy for me, but I'm confused about whether or not Common Core advocates like Kathleen Porter-Magee and Susan Pimentel are equally as concerned about the assignment of "just-right" texts assigned by computer's running corporate software as they are about the soft-hearted hippies teaching balanced literacy.
I would tend to prefer the latter to the former, but overall the whole text complexity question strikes me as a classic false dichotomy crossed with technocratic overreach.
I suspect that most reformers are ok with computers assigning texts to individual students based on complexity (but not teachers), but that there is probably also a subgroup that thinks that a few recommendations in the appendices will keep the software companies in check. If so, they're dreaming. They might be able to get the hippies fired though.
The thing that gets me worked up is the idea that the Common Core Standards themselves have anything to say or the matter. They clearly don't.