More common sense left Common Core


The roll out of Common Core standards in education has been as big a disaster as the roll out of Obamacare.

Baltimore County Superintendent of Education, Dallas Dance, commented, "We are building the plane as we fly it."  That telling statement by the Superintendent does not inspire confidence and we are talking about our children's education. Teachers are asking questions and not receiving answers. Students are relegated to the status of guinea pigs, subjugated to the power of a national education mandate. Parents, teachers, elected representatives and other stakeholders have been excluded from the development of Common Core. Even the people are controlled and managed at public meetings. Some have been arrested for exercising their right of free speech.

Common Core was developed by committees behind closed doors without public debate. Neither Congress nor state legislators, who are supposed to represent the public, were involved in the decision to adopt Common  Core. State governors or state boards of education, enticed by huge federal "race to  the top" grants, signed on to support Common Core before they had even read the standards.

This is a massive federal "power grab" mandating control over our children's education. Nationalized curriculum and standards have replaced local autonomy and independence. The math standards are two or more years behind international expectations and current educational standards in America.

No one knows how much it will cost to implement Common Core. New text books, teacher training, and technology upgrades are only part of the problem. Taxpayers' funds will be used for outreach and information to promote Common Core. In other words, the proponents will use our own money to brainwash us. One of the most disturbing technological initiatives is the creation of a massive database that includes private information about students and parents. It's the IRS and NSA all over again.

In order to slow down this unbuilt airplane that Superintendent Dance talked about, I am introducing three bills, two that will be local for Baltimore and Harford counties and one statewide version. All three create a moratorium or temporary termination of the Common Core program. Also, part of the three bills will establish an Impact Commission to engage in an honest and in-depth assessment of Common Core values. This legislation will generate an open process that will include parents, teachers, experts, elected officials and  all stakeholders in an transparent forum. Those who are concerned about the Common Core standards should rally around these legislative initiatives because this will be the only opportunity to stop this "runaway train."

Del. Pat McDonough

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