Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Congress must prevent federal control of the content of public education.

How to Avoid Dumbing High Schools Down

in Re-authorizing ESEA

Sandra Stotsky

There are good reasons why Congress should remove wording in the re-authorization of ESEA that implicitly requires states to adopt or use Common Core’s standards, or leaves states no choice but to adopt or use them.

The blackest mark CCS gets is for the low level of the academic expectations built into their definition of, and standards for, college-readiness.  Besides the legal questions, Common Core’s “college- and career-readiness standards” are not rigorous enough to prepare American high school students for authentic college-level coursework.  Nor can they make this country competitive in mathematics and science. 

CCS are neither internationally benchmarked nor research-based.

If states must use tests based on standards claimed to “prepare all students for college and career” in order to get their Title I money, USDE would end up in control of public education in every state in this country.

Policies built  into ESEA wording should strengthen, not weaken, the high school curriculum and prevent federal control of the content of public education.

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