How to responsibly fund & conduct a public education system that that prepares students to be independent and successful in their chosen careers.
We support a rigorous and relevant locally-run public education program that prepares students to be independent and successful in their chosen careers, in a fiscally responsible manner.
Common Core (labeled the “Common Core Georgia Performance Standards” in Georgia) is a nationwide initiative to promote national K-12 achievement standards, materials, and tests- significantly reducing the ability of parents, all taxpayers, and local school boards to design & implement their children’s education.
The CCSS were developed by two trade associations- the National Governors’ Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers (NGA & CCSSO). The Obama Administration tucked $4.35b of “Race To The Top” grant money into the 2009 Stimulus Bill that is being used to entice states to adopt CCSS (“We’ll have to pass the bill to see what’s in it”).
The CCSS implemented in Georgia started with English language arts and math, but there are plans to add social studies and science curriculum.
Proponents of the Common Core claim that the initiative was state-led; that the states adopted the standards voluntarily; and that the standards are “rigorous” and will better prepare our children for college and careers. A common national curriculum better meets the needs of students who move across state & school district boundaries.
What's the Problem? As of Jan 15, 2013, Alaska, Texas, Nebraska, and Virginia have chosen not to adopt the CCSS, and Minnesota rejected the math CCSS. Two states have introduced legislation to repeal CCSS: Alabama and Indiana, and Indiana voted in 2014 to withdraw from the program. The Administration has side-stepped state-level education offices that refuse to adopt CCSS by offering Race To the Top grants directly to local school districts. Why?- Upon examination, CCSS programs are insufficiently tested- there is no/insufficient study to demonstrate that it accomplishes the claimed academic excellence proponents claim. Are our children lab rats?- CCSS' "one size fits all" curriculum reduces state, local school board, and classroom flexibility to better meet the needs of advanced as well as slower learning students.- Concerns about students being channeled into educational & development paths based on early assessments, rather than being given a broader educational experience and discovering & pursuing new interests later in school.- Significantly increased CCSS testing requirements will add millions of dollars to already-strapped state budgets; Texas, which has refused to adopt CCSS, estimated these costs at $3,000,000,000; yes, that'sbillions!- Individual student data can be shared among government offices and businesses "for the purpose of improving education" without parental authorization. Note: in GA, through his executive order, Gov. Deal ordered "That no student data shall be collected for the purpose of the development of commercial "products or services." - Elected local school boards and state Superintendents are accountable to the NGA and CCSSO, rather than voting parents. Those same two private entities have insulated themselves from liability and damages arising from CCSS through their strict licensing agreement.- Loss of local control: under CCSS' tightly controlled curriculum and associated texts & teaching materials, we believe that children's education has taken a back seat to the profit motive of big business such as Microsoft, Pearson Education, & McGraw Hill publishers.