Common Core: and the beat (down) goes on

You might as well wave bye-bye to Common Core State Standards in North Carolina. On successive days, committees in the N.C. House and N.C. Senate have voted to do away with the learning standards employed in 44 states (including N.C., for the time being) not because they are lacking or because they don’t speak to the needs of 21st century students but because they are not “ours.”

Common Core isn’t officially done in yet, but it’s doubtful anyone who understands the importance of consistent learning standards — or simply understands Common Core at all — has either the power or the brass to stem the reactionary tide in Raleigh.

(Update 06/05/14): After this post, the N.C. House voted 78-39 to replace Common Core. Here’s today’s story from the News & Observer http://tinyurl.com/otpy5n7)

What will take the place of Common Core in North Carolina? Good question, and not one that legislators have much of an answer for. If the standards are repealed, a special Academic Standards Review Commission (appointed for the most part by legislators) will draft new standards. Curiously, the House Education Committee left instructions that Common Core standards couldn’t be included; the Senate was less strident on the matter, though one senator did say his aim was to create tougher standards. It hardly matters, does it?

As Sen. Jerry Tillman, the Republican gentleman from Randolph County, put it: “It’s ours, not theirs, that’s the main thing.” (To see whose it is, go here http://tinyurl.com/oc5bky9)

Here’s WRAL’s report on the Senate committee vote: http://tinyurl.com/oq7ke3k

Here’s the News & Observer report on Tuesday’s House committee vote: http://tinyurl.com/lkqcs34

If you’re confused after reading these news accounts, think how North Carolina public school teachers and administrators must feel.