Friday, August 29, 2014

Common Core Losing Ground to Opt Outs & Lawsuits in the South

The Common Core Initiative - and more importantly the national standardized testing associated with it - took two big shots this week as one school district "opted out" of the tests in defiance of the state, and another state saw its governor sue the federal government over Common Core despite his state education board's support of it. The Lee County School Board in Fort Meyers, Florida voted this week to "opt out" of the FCAT, which is the state test aligned to measure progress on the Common Core Standards. One school board member noted that sometimes it takes "a little civil disobedience" to do what's right. In the Lee County community, there is division over the value and benefit of both the Common Core and increased standardized testing as a measure of school quality.

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal holds similar beliefs, as evidence by his lawsuit against the US Department of education, charging the federal government with inappropriate and illegal intrusion into the protected local control of education. Governor Jindal is suing the federal government over Common Core because it has illegally misused federal funding to force states to adopt the standards and join one of two testing consortium, the PARCC or SmarterBalanced. Because the feds funded the testing corporations to the tune of $350 million dollars and then tied Race-to-the-Top funding to a state's adoption of the standards, Jindal argues the US Dept of Education is violating at least three federal laws that prevent it from managing or controlling classroom instruction.

No comments: