Joy Pullmann nails the Common Core problems down in a succinct way that is understandable to all in her article, “Why Indiana should delay Common Core, which appeared in today’s Indy Star online. She exposes the myth that Common Core was a state led initiative:
Haven’t heard of this? That’s because, unlike when states wrote standards themselves, it was spawned by nonprofits whose meetings and documents are closed to the public, despite substantial state and federal funding. Members of Indiana’s Senate Education Committee said they did not hear about the Core until well after the state Board of Education passed it.
People who support Common Core chant the same empty phrases to generate support: “Rigorous.” “Internationally benchmarked.” “State-led.” “Deep learning.” “Fewer, clearer, higher.” Ask what these mean, and watch them talk in circles. That’s because these descriptions are false. Core supporters wish to dismiss parent and voter questions, which is why they refuse to be publicly accountable and argue the legislature should not pass Senate Bill 193. The bill would pause the Core while the Board of Education conducts public hearings in each congressional district and then votes on it again.
Core proponents label it “state-led,” while President Obama, in his state of the union last month, took credit for getting states to sign it. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which paid for the Core, also spent $125 million to persuade policymakers and groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to support it. Not one person who wrote the standards or evaluated them came from Indiana. Only one was a teacher, who thinks Common Core micromanages teachers and will do nothing for students. Did public officials commission the standards? No one will release any vote tally or names. So what does it mean to be “state-led”? No one knows. The same black box encompasses Common Core tests that will soon steer all education, including private and home schools, under state and federal accountability laws.
Pullman makes the point not only that the standards have no proven track record, but also that they will be very costly to implement:
SB 193 would also commission a Common Core cost analysis, because no one did that before signing on. Florida wants to spend $500 million extra for Common Core test technology. Indiana’s former superintendent of public instruction, Tony Bennett, said he, as Florida education commissioner, is developing a Plan B because of a “risk” the tests don’t pan out. He’s not the only one worried: twelve states have recently reconsidered their involvement.
The unknown financial costs are beans beside the cost to local control and self-government when nearly every state puts unelected, unaccountable central bureaucrats in their K-12 drivers’ seats.
Pullman’s is an article that you will definitely want to read in its entirety and share with everyone you know. In fact, it needs to go viral across the state! Please help it do so, by liking it, posting it to your Facebook page, and tweeting it!