"They Are In Panic Mode": Defenders Of Common Core On The Attack

In recent days and weeks the Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled opponents of Common Core education standards as “Far right, anti-government, extremist” while the Superintendent of schools in the state of Arizona said that people trying to stop Common Core are “barbarians at the gate”.

In November of last year Education Secretary Arne Duncan said that “White suburban moms” were upset with Common Core because the new education standards was showing that their kids were not as “brilliant” as the parents thought and that “their school isn’t quite as good as they thought they were”.

And speaking during the 60th anniversary of the Supreme Courts Brown v Board of Education New York Education Commissioner John King hinted that opponents of Common Core were racist.

From The TimesUnion.com:

King said Common Core educational standards are an attempt to close the achievement gap between minority and low-income students relative to their peers. He urged parents and educators to not back off from their commitment to Common Core.

“This is about taking responsibility for educating every single child no matter what his or her race, background or economic status,” the commissioner said. “By retreating from accountability and allowing children at risk to slip through the cracks, advocates of lower standards deny us the talents of all Americans.”

King has faced criticism from educators and parents for his implementation of the Common Core standards. In February, the state Board of Regents agreed to slow down the rollout of some components, including teacher evaluations tied to standardized tests. In April, the New York State United Teachers union voted no confidence in King and withdrew the union’s support for the Common Core.

With all of this and more in mind I spoke with Stop Common Core Illinois’ Erin Raasch about the hater-ade being directed at the parents, grandparents, and concerned educators who are trying to stop Common Core.

Raasch said that, “As Common Core fails and their PR spin machine is failing, and more and more parents are alarmed and as states introduce legislation to dump Common Core, to block data collection, to defund it, stop the testing they are in panic mode. There is a lot of big money behind this and a lot of people are either financially or emotionally invested in this.”

So far Indiana is the first state to withdraw from the Common Core education standards while legislatures in other states contemplate the move or other actions to block/slow down the implementation of Common Core.

One of the issues parents and other critics have with Common Core is what it is doing(in a round about fashion) to the curriculum in schoolrooms across the country including the introduction of “White Privilege” into the educational system.

Jim Hoft and others have done a remarkable job at Progressives Today detailing everything that happened earlier this year at the White Privilege Conference held in Madison, Wisconsin.

The Examiner.com has a rather troubling story about Common Core and White Privilege out of New Hampshire.

A teacher at a private school, Dr. Pook, actually argued that Common Core was necessary due to his “White Privilege”.

Pook claims he helped write the standards. What he really means is he probably commented on the standards when they were finally made available. If he did write anything, that is yet another reason to end Common Core immediately. Pook’s outrageous statement: “As a white male in society I’m given a lot of privilege I didn’t earn’ and as a result I think it’s really important that all kids get an equal opportunity to learn how to read.” Is he saying that minority children don’t learn how to read the same as white children? How is it that white children have a perceived “privilege” over minority children?

On Common Core and curriculum Raasch said, “It’s sort of a curriculum wild west now. Curriculum choices are now narrowed down to those that are Common Core compliant. Now Common Core does not specifically set a standard that says that you have to teach white privilege.  However, many people in the system see Common Core as an easy way to put their political or other agendas into the curriculum. You only have three gigantic publishers left so if you can find a way to slip something into these books it is going to effect 35-40-45 states.  A lot of people see the advantage in this in addition they have all of these sharing websites and the host will say that everything on here is Common Core compliant and the teacher can just download the materials.  You see in the news just one time after another that there are activist clearly injecting very politically charged, very controversial materials into these worksheets about the second amendment, so on and so forth.”

And of Common Core math Raasch added, “If you are a parent you do not have to know or have heard of Common Core to understand that your kids math homework has become funky. Common Core is one of those issues that it doesn’t matter what your politics are if you see these crazy worksheets, the bizarre political stuff, the math where you have to draw circles and dots, they don’t like it and they want to make it go away.”

for more information about Common Core in Illinois visit StopCommonCoreIllinois.org