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What Proponents Have Gotten Wrong About Common Core

By    |   Wednesday, 27 May 2015 02:36 PM

The effectiveness of Common Core standards is the most controversial education debate of the Obama administration. It receives support, and criticism, from both liberals and conservatives. 

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Here are the top things proponents have gotten wrong about Common Core.

Common Core is not a curriculum.
Proponents for Common Core frequently assert this, pointing out that schools are free to choose and shape their own curricula, with competencies set out by Common Core as the goal.

However, many of the guidelines imposed by Common Core have specific do prescribed teaching methods. Education expert Frederick M. Hess writes in an article in the National Review, “The Common Core explicitly emphasizes a notion of math instruction that I think of a ‘picture-driven arithmetic.’ That’s why all students are being asked to draw the answers at such great length, even when it may seem unnecessary or inappropriate.”

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Hess also argues that since 70 percent of high school reading must be “informational” text, as opposed to literary, non-English subjects are burdened. "Now, it’s possible that having chemistry students read EPA reports rather than do labs is a better way to teach science, but there’s certainly no evidence proving the point," Hess writes.

While proponents support Common Core as a guideline, it is clear that these guidelines do in fact have curriculum consequences.

States voluntarily adopted the program.
A major point of dispute surrounding Common Core is the state’s role with these guidelines. When Common Core was developed, adoption of it was linked to funding benefits.

Conservative commentator Glenn Beck argued with a National Review article that said states voluntarily accepted this program, rather than were coerced, as many critics claim. Beck said, “Yes, some argue that states were coerced because they were coerced. $4.35 billion was earmarked for states who would take the bait. The money was offered in the stimulus package and, of course, 45 states immediately jumped on it.”

The Common Core creates students that are “college- and career-ready.”
As Hess debates in an opinion piece in the National Review, proponents of the Common Core support its preparation for future education and life skills. Yet, the Common Core does not include math topics such as pre-calculus and calculus.

Many proponents retort that the Common Core is simply “a floor, not a ceiling,” yet teachers are evaluated on how students perform on the test. Therefore, those requirements supersede any supplemental and further learning.

Vote Here: Is Common Core Good or Bad for Schools?

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The effectiveness of Common Core standards is the most controversial education debate of the Obama administration.
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Wednesday, 27 May 2015 02:36 PM
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