Our position on Common Core

Our position on Common Core: We are thrilled to see an informed discourse under the comment we posted from Rep. Nancy Lusk. We are aware that there are good reasons to support and oppose Common Core, and the Game On leadership group discussed them at our last meeting. We decided to support their implementation in Kansas for several reasons. Most of the Kansas teachers we have spoken with believe they are an improvement to teaching under NCLB. They say they will be able to teach like they used to and explore topics in more depth. They are more stringent than Kansas’ current curriculum. Children who move between states during their academic careers won’t miss being taught topics. Kansans helped write the standards. The SAT and ACT are being rewritten to match the curriculum, and Kansas students could be at a disadvantage in college admissions if we don’t adopt them. Kansas teachers began implementing the standards several years ago and much of the investment has already occurred. Kansas agreed to adopt Common Core as part of our waiver from NCLB and the increasingly unattainable AYP standards. If we don’t adopt Common Core, we are back in NCLB. Several prominent pro-education voices have expressed concern that the standards are not developmentally appropriate for younger grades and some special needs children, that they constitute an inappropriate one-size-fits-all solution, and that they continue the inappropriate focus on testing as the way to measure whether our schools are failing. We consider it quite possible that early Kansas scores will be low as districts adjust to the new curriculum, and we assume that this will be used to push the claim that Kansas schools are failing. The anti-Common Core arguments being relied upon by our anti-education forces in Kansas-that they are part of Agenda 21 or that they constitute a federal-government-drafted curriculum are not reasonable. Keep up the informed discussion and MAKE YOUR VOCIES HEARD!

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