Thursday, May 22, 2014

Opposing Common Core Irrationally or Rationally

Insane reasons for opposing Common Core:

Florida Lawmaker: Common Core Will Turn ‘Every One of Your Children’ Gay by Scott Keyes: “Common Core may not be a well-intentioned set of improved educational standards [and it isn’t], as supporters would have you believe, but instead a Trojan horse designed to turn every schoolchild in Florida, if not America, gay.

“This ominous warning came at an anti-Common Core event in March courtesy of Florida State Rep. Charles Van Zant (R). Speaking at the ‘Operation Education Conference’ in Orlando, Van Zant warned that officials implementing Common Core in Florida are ‘promoting as hard as they can any youth that is interested in the LGBT agenda.’

“Their aim, Van Zant warned, was to ‘attract every one of your children to become as homosexual as they possibly can.’ He then apologized to the crowd for having to be the bearer of bad news. ‘I really hate to bring you that news,’ the Florida Republican said, ‘but you need to know…’

“Even for a Republican Party prone to hysteria, Common Core has sent grassroots conservatives into an accelerated tailspin [for the wrong reasons]. Right Wing Watch has a roundup of some of the most exaggerated reactions, including an Alabama Tea Party leader saying a vote for Common Core will damn lawmakers to hell, the American Family Association warning that children won’t ‘survive’ Common Core, Eagle Forum saying it will promote homosexuality, Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK) calling it ‘socialism,’ and WorldNetDaily saying it will turn America into Nazi Germany.

“The leader of this backlash is Glenn Beck, who believes the educational standards, which have been adopted in 44 states, are ‘evil’ and designed to ‘train us to be a serf state’ under the rule of China and Islam.”

from Florida Lawmaker: Common Core Will Turn ‘Every One of Your Children’ Gay


Rational reasons for opposing Common Core:

·        It was developed in the private sector with economic (and political) objectives: “Common Core State Standards will prepare all children to be successful in a competitive global economy”

·         It was imposed by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices; the Council of Chief State School Officers; and Achieve, Inc. without proper examination of consequences

·         It is not a grassroots movement

·         It is a proposed “Free Market” solution for problems in education

·         Its chief advocates favor privatization of public education through charter schools, online learning  and vouchers

·         It is linked to federal funding

·         It is funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

·         The Initiative will be a bonanza for the education entrepreneurs

·         The Initiative assumes that national assessment and standards will raise achievement, despite the past failures of No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top

·         It is an untested “same skills” or “one-size-fits-all” approach to curricula, with a focus on only those skills that can be “tested with pre-packaged tests”

·         It assumes that test scores are related to “earning capacity, productivity or other measures of success in life”

·         It ignores “non-cognitive” skills that are essential for “success in life”

·         It emphasizes “abstract” concepts and arbitrary ratios (for example, the emphasis on teaching “non-fiction”)

·         It assumes that informational texts will help students learn

·         It is a no-choice method, without sufficient research and experienced teachers’ input

·         It ignores the fact that students learn at different rates

·         It ignores the fact that students have different learning styles

·         It ignores the fact that effective classrooms often work in spontaneous and unpredictable situations

·         It undermines the way children learn

·         It de-emphasizes playtime for kindergarten children

·         It promises that prescribed standards will make students “college ready”

·         It will create wasted hours of test preparation in classrooms

·         It will create a punitive high-stakes testing methodology without adequate preparation and professional development for teachers; moreover, there are many school districts in Illinois that lack the technology and funding that are necessary for implementation of CCSS

·         It will set up students, teachers and schools for failure and blame; thus, it will promote the reform agenda for the privatization of public education 
·         Common Core does not address the significant societal problems such as poverty, dysfunctional families, parental unemployment, gangs and illicit drugs: the issues that cause “marginalized” students to fail continuously.


  1. I have a wonderful son-in-law who's on a school board (which will go unmentioned) and when I tell him that Common Core is so bad for his kids education, and I'm seeing it every day, he says, but the right-wing hates it, so it must be good. Well, as you've said, they hate for other insane reasons, not the lack of quality and privatization bias, as well as leaving kids behind who can't make the mark. Thank you, as always.

  2. Many, many messages have been sent back and forth among bloggers attempting to explain this situation.
    During the 1800's diseases were blamed on possession by the devil as others explained the germ theory. This is a great comparison of today's conundrum. The wackos think and speak wacko. We think and speak reality. Because the CCSS is definitely a bad situation doesn't mean we must pretend to agree with the wackos. The enemies of our enemy are not necessarily our friends.

  3. I believe most people confuse teaching with the Common Core standards and using the assessments that are artificially tied to them. We have had standards for a long time and the Common Core are better than we've ever had. The forced assessments are another story. They have not been proven to measure anything useful and may not even work (computer-based testing and grading). Don't combine the two aspects when making an argument against the standards.

    1. The problems are how these standards are enforced and by whom; why there is an absurd mania for testing these standards, and the devaluation of public schools and their teachers…