Common Core means federal control of school curriculum, i.e., control by Obama administration left-wing bureaucrats. Federal control will replace all curriculum decisions by state and local school boards, state legislatures, parents and even Congress because Obama bypassed Congress by using $4 billion of Stimulus money to promote Common Core.
It's not only public schools that must obey the fed's dictates. Common Core will control the curriculum of charter schools, private schools, religious schools, Catholic schools and homeschooling.
The control mechanism is the tests. Kids must pass the tests in order to get a high school diploma, admittance to college or a GED. If they haven't studied a curriculum based on Common Core, they won't score well on the tests.
Common Core cannot be described as voluntary. Since CC is so costly to the states (estimated at $15 billion for each state for retraining teachers and purchase of computers for all kids to take the tests), CC is foisted on the locals by a combination of bribes, federal handouts, and as the price for getting a waiver to exempt a state from other obnoxious mandates, such as No Child Left Behind.
Don't be under any illusion that Common Core will make kids smarter. The Common Core academic level is lower than what many states use now, and the math standards are so inferior that the only real mathematician on the validation committee refused to sign off on the math standards.
He said the CC standards are two years behind international expectations by the 8th grade, and fall further behind in grades 8 to 12. The CC math standards downgrade the years when algebra and geometry are to be taught.
Parents will have a hard time helping their children with their math homework. CC standards call for teaching kids to add columns of figures from left to right instead of right to left.
CC advocates claim that the new standards will make students college-ready. That promise is a play on words: Students will be ready only to enter a two-year non-selective community college.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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