The Common Core Curriculum: What you must know

stressed kidSchools are embracing a national change in education. This new Common Core Initiative is a state-led effort intended to provide more clarity about and consistency in what is expected of student learning across the country. Until now, each state has had its own set of academic standards, meaning students from different states have been learning at different levels.

There will be key shifts in teaching English language and improved standards of Math. Their desire is for these areas to be more challenging and to better prepare your student for college.

It started long before Obama entered office and has been supported by Republicans such as Jeb Bush and Mike Huckabee. However, some are meeting this idea head on with opposition!

Here are some things you need to know:

Each learner is unique and has different needs. States are unique. The Common Core (CC) strives to have a “one-size-fits-all” approach. We can not treat kids as though they are the same and learn the same way.

There are many at the top creating standards funded by special interest groups. Do I really need to continue? Also, there were NO legislative votes on this. Why? Diane Ravitch, a former assistant U.S. secretary of education who was appointed to office by both Clinton and George H.W. Bush, recently changed her mind about Common Cause. Ravitch now refutes claims by Obama and Common Core that the standards were created by the states and voluntarily adopted by them. She writes in The Washington Post, “They were developed by an organization called Achieve and the National Governors Association, both of which were generously funded by the Gates Foundation. There was minimal public engagement in the development of the Common Core. Their creation was neither grassroots nor did it emanate from the states.” Instead, Common Core is being driven by policymakers in D.C.

Of course this program will have an enormous cost to implement (1). Additionally, they have been collecting data on your child since way back, but now it may include religion, medical and psychological info. What about the gifted or struggling learner? They will get left behind from a system that is designed for the masses. Because of the national standard that must be met, I can only imagine it will cause teachers to “teach the test”.

Another big change is the push to overhaul the reading material. The classics will be replaced with “informational texts” in language arts. (2) There are no doubt parents and teachers will have less and less control over their local school. That should alarm you! Some believe this is the start of big government forcing everyone to get in line with the Core.

My hope is that we maintain local control, having the ability and choice to educated our children locally rather than being forced to listen to politicians, funded by special interest money, screaming what they believe is best for my children.

  1. National Cost of Aligning States and Localities to the Common Core Standards. A Pioneer Institute and American Principles Project White Paper No. 82 Feb 2012 by Accountability Works
  2. More at Huffington Post http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/10/common-core-nonfiction-reading-standards_n_2271229.html
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