10 Things You Need to know about common core:
1. What is "Common Core"?
The Common Core State Standards are a set of untested, unproven academic standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts. In 2009, 46 states were coerced into blindly adopting these yet-to-be-written standards in exchange for stimulus money. Each state that adopted Common Core also had to agree to new nationalized assessments, as well as an invasive statewide data collection system to track students in ways that have never been done before. Read More...
2. What is wrong with national education standards?
There are two parts to this answer. First, competition is what drives us to succeed. Common Core takes away competition between the states and ultimately between nations as this is a United Nations-sponsored worldwide curriculum overhaul. Second, we believe adopting the Common Core standards nationally violates the tenth amendment as well as at least three other federal laws. Read More...
3. Was this reform asked for by Idaho's parents, educators and legislators?
Absolutely not. Because of No Child Left Behind and the America COMPETES Act, the idea of reforming educational standards has been floating out there for years, but there was no "grassroots" effort to reform Idaho's educational system in this way at all. Running parallel to reforming standards was the idea that states would adopt a statewide longitudinal data system (SLDS) to collect large amounts of data on students throughout their life. These two reforms are technically separate but always mentioned together in Common Core state standards. Idahoans certainly did not ask for data collection on their children, either. Find out more...
4. Did Idaho receive federal funds for adopting these standards?
Through the stimulus bill passed back in 2009, Idaho received over $350 million from the federal government for education. Adoption of Common Core was a requirement to receive those funds. Read more...
5. What are the experts saying about Common Core?
Opposition to Common Core is mounting across the country as more and more people are becoming familiar with the secretive process used to develop these standards, the quality of the standards themselves and the people behind the whole program. Among the harshest critics are two members that sat on the Common Core Validation Committee, Sandra Stotsky and James Milgram. Both are experts in their fields of English Language Arts and Mathematics, respectively. Find out more...
6. What will Common Core cost Idaho taxpayers?
That really is the multi-billion dollar question. Just ask California, as its estimate to implement Common Core ranges from $760 million, according to the California Department of Education, to a whopping $1.6 billion projection by other outside estimates. Read on...
7. How does Common Core affect the privacy of our kids and families?
The data collection already happening right now in Idaho is a gross invasion of privacy. It’s been happening for years and parents have had no idea. Our schools used to send aggregate data to the state, but it was never linked to an individual student. When Idaho established its statewide longitudinal data system in preparation for Common Core, every student and teacher was assigned a unique ID number. Now every piece of data sent to the state is attached to your student’s ID number. This data includes all disciplinary actions. Did you know that your child’s disciplinary history now sits in an electronic database in Boise where it will remain throughout their life? Find out more...
BILLS TO WATCH
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Parental Rights Bill (House Bill 113)
SBAC Repeal Bill (Senate Bill 1085)
8. How will Common Core affect the testing of our students?
We do not know exactly what we can expect from the assessments as they are still in the process of being written. Just as Idaho didn’t see the standards before we adopted them, we also haven’t seen exactly what is coming our way with the assessments. But because Idaho has entangled itself with Common Core, we also are now subject to national assessments. The two different testing consortia that Common Core-aligned states have signed onto is the PARCC and the SBAC. Idaho belongs to the SBAC, or Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. These assessments will be implemented during the 2014-2015 school year. Find out about the horrifying experiences of children who've taken Common Core tests in other states...
9. Does Common Core affect homeschoolers?
Common Core may not affect homeschoolers right away, but it will definitely cause significant problems for them in the near future. One of the groups responsible for writing the Common Core standards is the College Board. They also create and administer the SAT. David Coleman, president of the College Board, has said that they will redesign the SAT to align with the Common Core State Standards. Read on...
10. What can we do to stop Common Core?
A single guard on a city wall can sound the alarm and alert the whole city to respond to danger and potential destruction. You can be the guard on the city wall. You have more influence on the people around you than you know. The influence of one can be enormous. Let us not underestimate the effect we can have on an individual, a community, a state or a nation just by speaking up. Find out more...
The following video shows Jason Zimba, lead writer of the CC standards. He is trying to explain the meaning of "college-ready" standards to Sandra Stotsky, a member of the validation committee. Stotsky refused to sign off on the CC standards.