An inferior set of standards

The Common Core of Standards will be implemented in our local school by the 2014-2015 school year. Two writers of the core, Sandra Stosky and James Milligan, refused to sign off on it, claiming it to be inferior in mathematics and the English language arts.

Angie Summers, with West Virginia Against Common Core Standards, labeled the core as the “greatest threat to our nation.” One wonders, who adopted these standards for us? According to Glenna Clutter’s letter in June 9 Parkersburg News and Sentinel, the “standards went unnoticed because over 45 states’ boards of educations and/or governors hastily adopted the standards … in some cases, long before they were written or finalized.”

Are we required to adopt these standards? According to Summers, “the standards are voluntary, but the government puts its size 12 boot to the necks of states by threatening to withhold funding for those that refuse to adopt the standards.” Consequently, we are forced to accept an inferior set of Common Core standards adopted hastily by 45 states’ board of education and/or governors.

So, it is true “he who pays the fiddler calls the tune.” Does the state still have control? Does the local citizen still have a voice? The state Board of Education and/or the governor need to come forward to clarify the standards, explaining how our children will benefit and answer the above questions.

Local citizens can prepare for the discussion by reading Sandra Stotsky’s report to the Arkansas Legislature, and James Milligan’s report to the Texas Legislature. Of special note, pay close attention to the qualifications of the two chief writers of CCS, David Coleman and Jason Zimba. Neither ever taught in K-12 nor published anything on curriculum and instruction.

Lewis Rutherford

Parkersburg