State School Superintendent June Atkinson titled her April 15th blog “Common Core – It’s about Reading and Math.” However, many folks believe “It’s About Control.”
There are some who are making wild claims about the Common Core and what it is. I can tell you, because I was there at its very beginning, that it is not an effort that the federal government directed. I was there and was a part of the work so I have first-hand knowledge of the truth. This work, this new set of standards, is an attempt to bring together the best thinking about math and English language arts standards and to bring some uniformity to these two basic curriculum areas.
However, the Federal Government enticed states to adopt these standards through grants. Wonder if North Carolina would have received $400 million if the State Board had not decided to adopt Common Core? Interesting that ALL 10 states first to receive “Race to the Top” grant money ALL stated they would adopt Common Core. Coincidence? The Department of Education has given $360 million to two groups to develop Common Core tests.
Atkinson made it sound as if folks around the state embraced these standards.
The work went through many drafts before it was completed. In fact, in North Carolina teachers, business people, and citizens gave feedback to these drafts, and we made changes to improve the initial ideas.
Last month Civitas Institute released this polling information about Common Core:
Nearly 7 in 10 (68%) of respondents said they were “not very aware” or “completely unaware” of Common Core State Standards and their impact on the classroom.
Wonder if there is a list of North Carolina parents who made suggestions for changed, and proof showing the suggestions changed a draft?
To clearly understand this issue, one should read Dr. Terry Stoops “35 Questions About Common Core.”
While this subject is just beginning to gain interest in North Carolina, the controversy is far from over. On April 16th there was a national rally via twitter on Common Core.
A snapshot of Twitter analytics from the website Hashtracking around 1 pm ET showed the #StopCommonCore hashtag was “reaching” over 1.9 million Twitter users. #SupportTheCore reached closer to 260,000 users.