Comic books and graphic novels were formerly considered useful primarily for underachieving students and poor readers as a means to get them interested in books. But now Common Core is bringing picture books into the mainstream of education.
At a National Council of Teachers of English conference, the teachers of a senior Advanced Placement honors course presented an argument against having students read "Beowulf" and substituting a comic book based on "Beowulf." No doubt parents will be told that CC includes classic literature such as "Beowulf."
The outgoing president of the Missouri branch of the NEA said CC will "prepare our kids for a global community, a global society. These are going to exactly take us there."
The new science standards, called "Next Generation Science Standards," were examined by nine scientists and mathematicians for content, rigor and clarity, after which the Fordham Institute gave them a grade of "C." They criticized the "ceiling on the content and skills that will be measured at each grade," the excluding of content that more advanced students can learn, the failure "to include essential math content that is critical to science learning" in physics and chemistry, and the "confusing" wording of the standards.
Proponents of evolution and manmade climate change are ecstatic about the new Common Core science standards. Education Week reports: "The standards make clear that evolution is fundamental to understanding the life sciences."
Common Core does not prepare students to major in the STEM subjects at a university. CC prepares students only to enroll in courses at two-year community colleges.
Always a friend of parents' rights, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, is leading an effort to persuade Senate appropriators to restore state-level decision-making about academic content in public schools in order to counter the way federal incentives have forced states to adopt the Common Core standards. He wants the Senate "to restore state decision-making and accountability with respect to state academic content standards" because "parents ought to have a straight line of accountability to those who are making such decisions."
An earlier version of this column misrepresented the Thomas B. Fordham Institute's views of the Common Core. The Fordham Institute rated the Common Core English language arts standards with a B+ grade and the Common Core math standards with an A- grade. It found the Common Core State Standards to be superior to three-quarters of states' previous math and English language arts standards. Its rating of the Next Generation Science Standards (C grade) is inferior to existing standards in 12 states and the District of Columbia, superior in 16 states, and too close to call in 22 states.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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