Common Core opponents in Congress are working on a bill to thwart the controversial education plan. US Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan claims the Obama administration Race to the Top linked academic plan is not a step towards “national curriculum status.” A growing group of GOP Senators and a total of 40 House Republicans have already signed onto bills which deems Common Core as nothing more than an attempt at the federal coercion of the education system.
Both homeschool groups and parent advocates around the country have been fighting back against Common Core mandates for several years. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, foes of the education plan struck victory recently in Colorado and stopped the initiation of the standards at least temporarily.
During a weekend gathering of the National Governors Association, Arne Duncan was questioned about Common Core and the legislation proposed by South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham and co-sponsored by eight of his GOP peers. Graham’s resolution opposed linking taxpayer dollars used to fund the Common Core standards and thereby creating a “de facto national curriculum.”
When asked about the creation of a nationalized education system and federal coercion, Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan said, “I’m not familiar with that [accusation] but that’s simply true.”
More than 40 House Republicans have signed onto a similar measure denouncing Common Core. The Obama administration remains steadfastly behind the Common Core K-12 math and English standards despite the National Education Association’s criticisms. The standards were developed by the Council of Chief State School Officers. Opponents of the education program are also vocally opposed to the student datamining often associated with Common Core.
Arne Duncan had this to say in defense of Common Core:
“We’ve always supported high standards. That’s the key thing … almost 20 states dummied down standards on No Child Left Behind to make politicians look good. It’s one of the most silly things to happen to education. What you see here is governors showing tremendous leadership to their approach in raising standards. You see again across the country 38 percent of kids…going to universities taking remedial classes. That’s not a good thing. The vast majority of states…are doing a good job of raising standards.”
Raising the bar will not improve the stagnant academic progress in public schools. Overhauling what type of questions asked on yet another new version of standardized tests does not address the serious problems facing both students and teachers. Supporting quality teachers and having the ability to remove subpar educators from the classroom despite tenure, would do more to aid students across the achievement realm than another mandate by the Department of Education. Grouping children by ability from a young age for reading and math instruction is controversial, but would allow both the teacher and the students time to work at a reasonable pace and ensure that the pupil fully comprehends a concept before moving forward.