Common Core. Say that today and you are very likely to get a negative response, which is completely justified. When Barack Obama was first elected President he promised to fundamentally transform the United States, and he could have only dreamed of this. But let’s get that clear distinction out of the way in the beginning, Common Core was not created by Barack Obama and it is not a Republican vs. Democrat issue, it’s an American values issue created by Progressives looking to change our nation and make money doing it.
Common Core made its secret way in states across the country in 2010 when the federal government offered the stimulus package. If states wanted the money, they would need to accept these new federal education mandates. There were several states who refused to adopt Common Core, and several others who have not made full implementations, but have adopted something similar. However, we are now seeing several states reject the Common Core mandates and curriculum due to massive public outcry. Most parents, teachers and kids despise Common Core. The teachers despise having to change their lessons to fit a test or new curriculum, along with the new ways of testing teachers, students hate being taught differently than before, as courses such as math have only become more difficult, and parents hate not being able to help their kids when the kids can’t understand their homework. No one seems to be happy about this, except those responsible for it and the government.
The facts about the creation of Common Core are startling. There were some bureaucrats and lawmakers involved in the creation, along with a few school organizations, and oddly enough, large corporations, including Microsoft, GE and ExxonMobil. With politicians and big business involved in the creation of these standards it’s no wonder that there are so many problems. No one knows where the standards truly came from, or why the curriculum was changed so much. On the political side, when you have New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush agreeing on something, you have most likely created something terribly wrong. Oddly enough, New York is where some of the main opposition to Common Core has taken place, but the opposition is being fought by Governor Cuomo and NYS Department of Education Commissioner John King.
I was lucky enough to miss the full implementation of Common Core by about a year. However I have only heard bad stories from those who now have to take the classes. Children are overloaded with work they have never seen before and subjects we didn’t take at their age, and despite what those in favor are saying, the scope of what teachers can teach has been narrowed by the “teaching to the test and standards” required by Common Core. Students will learn better in a structured way and learning things that will interest them. Common Core seems to take some of that away. Teachers enjoy teaching facts they believe may interest the students a little more, or teaching something boring in a fun way, Common Core restricts that as well.
There are several things that concern me about Common Core. One is that Common Core is a product of national education, meaning these standards are the same across the country. Alaska should have different standards than New York as there are some different things to learn, especially in science and history. Students should be learning the history of their own state, and that should be their first subject in Social Studies. However, apparently now students are learning ancient history of other cultures before their own. Whether a student is from Alaska or New York, they should learn the history of their own state and then their own country before the history of other countries. This just seems plain wrong to me.
History also becomes the area where the possibilities of biases are the highest. We have seen several biases in the past few months due to Common Core. Textbooks, lesson plans and tests created by some of these entities responsible for the creation of Common Core have been shown to have distortions of U.S. history. Some of the most plentiful examples have been distortions of the First and Second Amendments of the U.S. Constitution. Common Core only leaves room for more biases to be placed across the curriculum because of those involved in writing it.
One of those involved in writing the Common Core curriculum is David Coleman, the current President of College Board. Coleman is now responsible for writing the standards and tests for the SATs and AP US History. Some have seen copies of the possible AP US History exam and have noted the lack of mentions of key historic battles, including Midway D-Day and others from the Revolutionary War and Civil War, lack of mentions of the Founding Fathers, and increased mentions of class warfare and cultural situations within the United States. However, it doesn’t even have to be leaving something out that constitutes as bias. Sometimes subtle points are made in math, science or other texts that will also change the perception of what is being read.
We have known for quite some time that Progressives want to rewrite the history books for their own gains. Progressives have said for years the times are changing and that the Constitution needs to adapt to the times. However, if students do not know our true history, Progressives will be able to write the history how they want to. The best thing for people to do is to fight the new Common Core standards and ensure that our history is still taught correctly. Common Core is wrong for our teachers and students, and we should do what we can to protect them from ridiculous political biases. It is difficult to gather all the information, but Americans should research the truth behind Common Core anyway to fight this federal overreach that could turn to a changing of American education and history.
As a final thought, maybe Rick Perry was right in 2012 when he said we should dismantle the Department of Education. The Federal Government has no right to be involved in our education.