July 28, 2014 by Vicki Alger
“Barbarians at the gate.” That’s what Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction John Huppenthal called opponents of Common Core national standards several weeks ago. His remarks are symptomatic of just how far elected officials within and outside Arizona have strayed from our Constitution, which doesn’t even contain the word “education.”
Supporters claim Common Core will provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students should know to be prepared for college and their future careers. On the contrary, many experts serving on Common Core review committees warn that academic rigor was compromised for the sake of political buy-in from the various political interest groups involved—including teachers unions.
Unsurprisingly, the curriculum is being used to advance a partisan political agenda, showcasing one-sided labor union, ObamaCare, and global warming materials, along with more graphic, adult-themed books under the auspices of promoting diversity and toleration. But the politicization doesn’t stop there.
Non-academic, personal information is being collected through federally funded Common Core testing consortia about students and their parents, including family income, parents’ political affiliations, their religion, and students’ disciplinary records—all without parental consent. That information, including Social Security numbers of students in at least one state, is being shared with third-party data collection firms, prompting a growing number of parents to opt their children out of Common Core.
But they’re not alone.
Originally, 45 states signed on to Common Core, but so far four states have formally pulled out. Indiana recently became the first one to reverse course and implement state standards instead. This decision earned athreatening letter from the U.S. Department of Education about withholding funds and revoking Indiana’s waiver from onerous federal No Child Left Behind Act mandates.
South Carolina, Missouri, and Oklahoma have also ditched Common Core standards. In fact, Oklahoma’s legislation is considered the strictest to date for expressly reinstating previous standards for a two-year review period and prohibiting any aligning between assessments and Common Core. Seven additional states have pulled out of their federally subsidized testing consortia, and four more are considering doing the same—although one testing consortium, Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC),still lists several withdrawn states as members.
Common Core is publicized as a state-led, voluntary initiative, but in reality it’s an offer states can’t refuse if they want their share of billions of federal dollars for education programs.
read full article: More States Abandoning the Sinking Common Core Ship
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