If there’s one thing education experts agree on, it’s that Common Core isn’t creating a lot of common alliances! In an interesting political twist, the President’s national standards seem to be producing plenty of strange partnerships. Republicans and Democrats are reaching across the aisle for and against the policy, while tea partiers hatch odd coalitions with teachers unions and President Obama saddles up with Exxon-Mobil. The coalitions around Common Core are as diverse as they are unpredictable. “That wonderful old line [is] that the problem with national standards is: Republicans don’t do ‘national’ and Democrats don’t do ‘standards,” said one leader.
For now, the opposition to the administration’s “feducation” seems to be picking up steam, as states like Florida, Missouri, Ohio, and Pennsylvania frantically try to roll back Washington’s universal standards. In Arizona and Idaho, the benchmarks are so unpopular that leaders have tried changing the program’s name to boost its image (“Arizona’s College and Career Ready Standards” and “Idaho Core”). Although 45 states and D.C. adopted the Core, Governors likeLouisiana’s Bobby Jindal (R) are trying to stop the federal government’s overreach. “We need Louisiana standards, not Washington, D.C. standards.”
Like us, he knows that behind the curtain of Common Core is a strong drive the federal government to centralize education and strip parents and local schools of their authority. The program is also making headlines for its veiled attempt at data collection through suspicious student surveys and other means. “Common Core means government agencies will gather and store all sorts of private information on every schoolchild into a longitudinal database from birth through all levels of schooling, plus giving government the right to share and exchange this nosy information with other government and private agencies…” Phyllis Schlafly pointed out. “This type of surveillance and control of individuals is the mark of a totalitarian government.” What’s more, the type of curriculum being spawned by Common Core (CC) is objectionable to many parents. Contact your state officials and encourage them to avoid CC and its lure of federal money. A rotten Core is worse than no core at all.
Tony Perkins heads the Family Research Council. This article is excerpted from the Washington Update that he compiles for the FRC.
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