Governor Pence’s has taken a firm stance in support of the new academic standards proposed for Indiana, defying logic and the desires of the populous. He has dismissed parents, national experts, and teachers’ concerns in favor of the recommendations of the bureaucratic educational establishment. Adherence to the criteria established by the U.S. Department of Education for retaining our waiver from No Child Left Behind has trumped overwhelming evidence that the new standards will weaken the academic quality of educational standards and testing for Hoosiers.
Regardless of the lack of support the standards received from experts in the field, despite parental outrage, and most importantly without adequate evidence that the standards have met the requirements of the law that propagated them, these new standards have Pence’s support. He has shut the door, put on his hat, and is walking away from the issue claiming a victory for federalism and Hoosier students.
Many of us witnessed the Indiana Department of Education’s presentation on the new standards to the Roundtable, which was void of the concerns and recommendations of those opposing the standards and served more as a dog and pony show than a critical evaluation of the standards. Thankfully, the standards still have another hurdle to clear with a final vote by the State Board of Education(SBOE) on April 28th.
While the Indiana Roundtable vote was closed to public comment, the SBOE has a less controlled format and various positions can be heard and included in the discussion. This allows the parents and advocates of higher standards for Hoosier students to do what they do best, expose the truth and present factual evidence in favor of OUR position.
While some may claim the new standards are a done deal, the battle is NOT over.
After all, tomorrow is another day.