Update on Common Core Status in the States: Part Two
On February 6, 2014, I posted my first of three installments regarding the state of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in statehouses nationwide– and even in the US Senate. Reaction to CCSS includes the Huckabee-promoted “rebranding” of the CCSS “product” as well as CCSS investigation, testing delay, and prohibition/voiding.
Quite the spectrum of reaction.
In the first installment, I included information on twelve states: Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, and South Carolina.
This second installment concerns the state of CCSS in an additional twelve states: Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, and Tennessee.
From a research perspective, I consider CCSS a case study in how not to create and implement education standards.
What an expensive mess is this CCSS havoc.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
The push to derail Louisiana’s move to the national academic standards called Common Core is shaping up as a political brawl in the state Legislature. …
“I can give you 50 reasons why it is bad,” said state Rep. Brett Geymann, R-Lake Charles. “But the most important to me is we ought to have control over our own education.” …
Geymann, state Rep. Cameron Henry, R-Metairie, and state Sen. A.G. Crowe, R-Slidell, said they are preparing a wide range of bills on Common Core, including an end to the state’s participation, what would replace it, testing policies and student data privacy.
Critics of the standards say months of angry town hall meetings, public hearings and rallies make it likely some sort of changes are on the way during the 2014 legislative session.
“I think parents have a greater understanding of what Common Core is, and they don’t like it,” Henry said. “And legislators have a greater understanding of what Common Core is, and they don’t like it either.” …
Henry said he is considering 13 bills on various Common Core issues, including withdrawing Louisiana from the consortium.
“There is no factual data that proves that Common Core is effective at all,” he said.
Geymann said he is reviewing about a dozen proposals. “The main issue I am going to try to address is what to replace Common Core with if we get rid of it,” he said.
State Rep. John Schroder, R-Covington, said he plans to file a wide range of bills on the standards, including proposals on student privacy, testing and costs.
The Maine Common Core Referendum may appear on a November 2014 ballot in Maine as a veto referendum. If approved by voters, the measure would repeal the implementation of Common Core standards in state schools.
The veto referendum is sponsored by two groups, the Maine Equal Rights Center and No Common Core Maine. Supporters are aiming to land the measure on the November 4, 2014 ballot. …
Two groups, the Maine Equal Rights Center and No Common Core Maine, are sponsoring the measure. Erick Bennett, director of the Maine Equal Rights Center, said, “It doesn’t matter what your ideology is. (Common Core) totally eliminates your involvement in how the money is spent and how your kids learn.” While fellow supporter, Heidi Sampson, co-founder of No Common Core Maine and member of Maine’s Board of Education, said, “The people of Maine will be able to have their voices heard,” she said. “If this is not repealed, the parents of Maine will have no more voice when it comes to the education of their children. That’s the harsh reality. I don’t care how it’s sugarcoated. When Washington, D.C., pulls the strings on education, there is no more local control.”
Supporters needed to gather at least 57,277 valid signatures by February 3, 2014 in order to qualify the measure for the ballot.
A flurry of bills trying to slow down or stop the implementation of the new Common Core educational curriculum in Maryland are about to hit the legislative dockets, according to Sen. Edward Reilly, a Republican on the education committee that oversees it.
On Thursday, Reilly and four other Republican senators introduced two bills related to testing and teacher evaluation based on testing.
One (SB578) requires each local school board to set the timeline for fhe new standardized tests based on Common Core curriculum, but no sooner than June 30, 2015
The other bill (SB579) delays any evaluations of teachers and principals based on standardized testing until at least the same time next year. …
In one of the more severe measures proposed, Del. Michael Smiegel has filed a bill (HB76) to repeal Common Core entirely. A another bill introduced by Reilly (SB408) would delay the implementation of Common Core.
A bipartisan bill sponsored by Del. Eric Luedtke, D- Montgomery, would stop the Maryland Standardized Assessment (MSA) test from being administered this spring. The same bipartisan bill was introduced in the Senate by Sen. Nancy King with a majority of the senators as co-sponsors.
The MSA test is not fully aligned with the Common Core curriculum, and the test — which will be phased out next year — will cost $6 million to administer.
The bill Reilly introduced Thursday would delay the administration of the Common Core annual standardized tests, known as Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) for at least a year. Schools are slated to begin electronically administering the new standardized test in full next year.
Local school systems have requested $100 million in updates to be ready for the tests.
Massachusetts has approved a two-year transition to the tests aligned to the Common Core State Standards being developed by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers…. This transition specifically means that not all Massachusetts schools will be administering the PARCC exams in the spring of 2015, a significant shift from the original plan for the tests.
The plan, which was approved by a 6-3 vote of the state Board of Education Nov. 19, [2013,] would allow the board to wait until the fall of 2015 to decide whether to fully embrace the PARCC test for students in grades 3-8. That’s several months after the first operational tests are due to be administered. During this transitional period, districts could choose whether to use the state’s current test, the MCAS, or PARCC. If the board determines that PARCC is a better exam, then all state students in grades 3-8 will take the PARCC test in 2016.
SB 514 – This act prohibits the State Board of Education, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, and school districts from implementing the Common Core State Standards for public schools developed by the Common Core State Standards Initiative or any other substantially similar learning standards. Any actions taken to adopt or implement the Common core State Standards are void.
UPDATE 02-10-14 for MO in comments:
HB 1708: Introduced by State Representative Kurt Bahr (R-St. Charles) – Prohibits the State Board of Education, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, and school districts from implementing the Common Core State Standards.
HJR 74: Introduced by State Representative Dean Dohrman (R-La Monte) – Proposes a constitutional amendment that would require members of the State Board of Education to be elected. Currently, members are appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate.
SB 514: Introduced by State Senator John Lamping (R-St. Louis) – Prohibits the State Board of Education, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, and school districts from implementing the Common Core State Standards.
SB 798: Introduced by State Senator Ed Emery (R-Lamar) – Modifies provisions relating to elementary and secondary education standards and assessments. (Would pull Missouri out of Smarter Balanced and repeal the Common Core State Standards.)
SB 819: Introduced by State Senator Wayne Wallingford (R-Cape Girardeau) – This act enacts multiple provisions to protect personal privacy from government intrusion.
We are in the process of having other bills filed as well and hope to have that done this week. We have been very busy during the last year visiting legislators and hosting meetings across the state. We are having a rally on February 18 in the rotunda of the Capitol. If you are in Missouri or know someone, please invite them to attend. https://www.facebook.com/events/478983028891737/
BTW, the information above was provided to Truth in American Education and some updated information on other states can be found there. http://truthinamericaneducation.com/common-core-state-standards/2014-common-core-legislation-round-up/
If you are in Missouri, be sure to visit www.moagainstcommoncore.com for research/documentation and toolkits to use.
A bill to fight back against the Common Core curriculum is going to be introduced in the New Hampshire State House of Representatives during next year’s legislative season, adding the Granite State to the list of states pushing back against this attempted federal educational takeover.
House Bill 1508 “requires the state board of education to terminate all plans, programs, activities, and expenditures relative to the implementation of the common core state educational standards which have been adopted or may be adopted by the state board, including any assessments and instruction based upon such standards.”
It is being introduced by State Rep. Lenette Peterson (R-Hillsborough) and has already garnered nine co-sponsors.
New Jersey Has Two Bills for PARCC Delay and CCSS Investigation
Establishes Common Core State Standards Evaluation Task Force; delays use of assessments developed by Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers until task force submits final report.
On November 19, 2013, eight NJ State Senators sent a letter to Christopher Cerf, Commissioner of the NJ Department of Education demanding more information on the reason for replacing the current academic standard with CCSS, the costs for the school districts to implement CCSS and privacy issues involved with CCSS.
UPDATE 02-09-14 on NJ from Carolee Adams:
New Jersey Corrections/Updates: 12 (not 8) NJ State Senators (of 40) signed a Letter to NJDOE Commissioner Cerf; current Bill Nos. are S293/A990 introduced by Democrats and co-sponsored by Republicans; approx. 2300 teachers have signed a petition to the NJEA President seeking union support to change/upend CC/PARCC; there will be a legislative hearing about CC/PARCC Monday, February 10; at least 6 Resolutions/Complaints have been filed by NJ school boards concerning unfunded mandates; at least 5 County Freeholder Resolutions (bi-partisan) have been passed unanimously opposing CC/PARCC; over 25 meetings, TV & radio broadcasts, and press conferences occurred last year; more.
The bill [New Mexico] Senator Lopez has introduced would halt implementation of the Common Core and withdraw the state from the PARCC testing consortium. It would also require public hearings and a fiscal analysis of the new standards before they are brought into effect.
From the text of the proposed bill:
An act relating to public schools; prohibiting the public education department from continuing to implement the common core standards until certain requirements have been met; providing requirements for the adoption or revision of curricular standards; requiring the state to withdraw from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers; prohibiting the state from implementing assessments aligned to common core standards by the partnership; requiring the state to use assessments in place before the adoption of the common core standards; prohibiting the department from entering into certain agreements; requiring public hearings and a fiscal analysis on implementation of common core standards; making appropriations.
The leaders of the New York State Senate and Assembly called on the state Board of Regents today to hold off on using Common Core tests to make high-stakes decisions affecting teachers or students for two years. …
The legislative leaders also asked the Regents to delay sending student data to inBloom, a private, non-profit company the state has contracted to store and manage the information. That is in response to concerns that the data may not be secure.
Senate co-leaders Dean Skelos and Jeff Klein, along with Senate Education Chair John Flanagan, followed Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Assembly Education Chair Catherine Nolan, who issued a similar statement earlier in the day. …
They called on the state Education Department to use the delay to further develop curriculums aligned to the Common Core standards and help school districts develop their own lesson plans to meet the higher standards.
The implications of the announcement was clear: If the Regents don’t act, the Legislature will.
The State Board of Education must decide whether it will replace state-written standardized tests with national exams, a decision freighted with financial and political implications.
North Carolina has been part of a group of states guiding the creation of a national test called SMARTER Balanced, which is tied to Common Core standards for reading and math. The thought was that students statewide would begin taking the national exams next year. …
The legislature in its budget prohibited the Board of Education from spending any money on new tests linked to the standards, including SMARTER Balanced, unless the legislature passes a law allowing it.
A legislative committee examining Common Core wants to consider the fiscal and legal consequences of the state dropping out of the group working on the test. …
“It’s a very complicated thing because it has budgetary implications,” he said. Ultimately, the legislature controls what that board will do, Cobey said.
The 14-member board, which includes the lieutenant governor, the state treasurer and 11 members appointed by the governor, has discussed a March deadline for making a preliminary decision. But that timetable is out of sync with any possible legislative action. The legislature doesn’t return to work until May 14. Even if legislators decided to allow the state board to buy national tests, there’s no way they could pass a law allowing it by March.
Members of the Ohio House of Representatives’ Committee on Education pored over hours’ worth of written and oral testimony, mostly from opponents to the national standards known as Common Core, asserting the most recent federal directives on education are both substandard and too intrusive to students’ personal information. …
Two other related house bills dealing with student privacy and standardized tests are also currently circulating through the education committee. …
Republican lawmakers are putting the final touches on legislation that would delay the implementation of Common Core education standards and the companion test in Tennessee, perhaps setting the stage for the type of fight playing out in statehouses across the country.
Around a dozen House Republicans, according to Rep. Rick Womick, R-Rockvale, are united behind a bill to take a pause from the controversial curriculum — for up to three or four years — and separate legislation to delay administering its corresponding test, called the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers.
With a Common Core showdown brewing for months, he said, lawmakers have sought collaboration to prevent duplicating legislative efforts. …
“Let’s make sure this latest educational theory is successful,” said Rep. Glen Casada, R-Franklin, who supports postponing Common Core’s implementation. “Let’s delay and look.”
The deadline to file legislation for Tennessee’s new session, which began last week, is in February. Womick’s bill hasn’t been filed and its language isn’t finalized.
UPDATE 02-08-13 Re: Tennessee CCSS legislation:
Note: Below is a list of bills — using the House versions — and their ‘caption’ description that deal with Common Core.
HB1696, by Rep. Shelia Butt
Education, Curriculum – As introduced, mandates that the state board of education and department of education shall immediately withdraw from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and common core state standards.
HB1825, by Rep. Rick Womick
Education – As introduced, requires the state board of education and the department of education to postpone any further implementation of Common Core State Standards beyond those standards implemented as of June 30, 2013, until further implementation is approved by the general assembly.
HB2043, by Rep. Paul Bailey
Education – As introduced, prohibits use of results from the first year of student assessments based on common core standards to be used for teacher evaluations or for promotion, retention, termination, compensation, tenure or other teacher employment decisions.
HB2290, by Rep. Billy Spivey
Education – As introduced, requires the department of education to reimburse LEAs for the costs of implementing and the ongoing costs to use common core state standards and PARCC assessments.
HB2332, by Womick
Education – As introduced, discontinues use of common core state standards.
HB2333, by Butt
Education – As introduced, directs the comptroller of the treasury to audit the funding for the implementation of common core state standards and all components of PARCC, with cooperation from the department of education and the state board of education; requires the comptroller to audit the race to the top funding; requires a report of findings and recommendations to the education committees by July 1, 2015.
A Closing Word
The articles linked above are replete with the CCSS propaganda about “fewer, clearer standards” on “what students need to know in order to be college and career ready.”
Regurgitated talking points do not quality education make.
Fortunately, legislators across the country are looking beyond the CCSS surface gloss and into the gnarled, practical issues of federally-enticed, CCSS intrusion.
One more installment to come.