Common Core

Is Common Core College Prep?

Jun 22, 2015

The Common Core education standards have generated a lot of debate, and controversy.  

But that political noise can sometimes cloud the goal of the standards: to better prepare students for careers, and college.  

To wrap up the Southern Education Desk series on Common Core, from New Orleans, Nina Feldman examines whether the standards are meeting that goal.


Common Core: Rebranding and Review

Jun 19, 2015
Anna Davis of Picayune and her daughter Isabel doing everyday school work.
Paul Boger / MPB

The phrase “Common Core” has become toxic.

Some states have tried changing the name of the education standards. Others have dropped the standards altogether.

In this region, the Southern Education Desk finds another approach: asking the public to review the benchmarks for learning in reading and math.


Common Core: Opposition in Southern Statehouses

Jun 18, 2015
State Actions on Common Core in 2015
National Conference of State Legislatures

According to the National Conference of State Legislators, this year more than 730 Common Core bills were introduced across the country — including 21 state proposals for repeal.

Legislative sessions have just ended in many states, but mention the phrase “Common Core” in some circles and you’ll still strike up debate.

The Southern Education Desk is examining why Common Core is so controversial in this region, starting with a look at the roots of the opposition.


Full Audio: State of the State

Apr 13, 2015

Bobby Jindal addresses the Louisiana legislature one last time as governor, kicking off the 2015 legislative session.

It’s a fiscal session, so lawmakers will be focused on finding solutions to close a $1.6 billion budget gap, with the future of higher education and healthcare services at stake. The governor has already made his “guardrails” clear: he won’t accept any tax increases.

Beyond the budget, Jindal is aiming to yank Common Core education standards from Louisiana’s public schools. And he’s looking to frame the debate around a religious freedom bill filed in anticipation of a Supreme Court ruling on the marriage of same-sex couples.

With host Amy Jeffries, Michael Henderson, director of LSU’s Public Policy Research Lab, and political scientist Robert Hogan provide context and analysis as Gov. Bobby Jindal lays out his agenda for the 2015 legislative session.
 


It wasn’t a comfortable conversation, as Lake Charles Rep. Brett Geymann — a Common Core opponent — grilled Louisiana Superintendent of Education John White in the House Appropriations committee meeting Tuesday. At issue were plans to purchase new batteries of state standardized tests.


Turning Back the Clock on Common Core

Mar 23, 2015

Gov. Bobby Jindal is serious about getting rid of Common Core, as he made clear in announcing a package of legislation last week.

This is a plan that removes Common Core from Louisiana, and replaces it with "high-quality Louisiana standards,” the governor announced at a Wednesday press conference.

While no one questions his intent, some of Jindal’s former allies in the education reform movement have grave doubts about the methodology the governor wants to employ.

This story was produced by The Hechinger Report, a nonprofit, independent news organization focused on inequality and innovation in education. Read more about the Common Core.

“My child is crying and beating his head on the table at night, when we address homework,” Desoto Parish parent Karen Jenkins told the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Thursday.

“My grandchildren started vomitin’ at school,” Caddo Parish grandmother Pat Dyson said.

Both were trying to persuade BESE to make allowances for opting out of the upcoming PARCC testing, because they believe Common Core is doing more harm than good.


 “I don’t want to subject my son to an environment of testing that I know has nothing to do with learning.”

So says James Kirylo, father of Antonio, a third-grader attending public school in Tangipahoa Parish. Kirylo is also a professor of education at Southeastern Louisiana University, and is one of dozens of parents around the state who are opting their children out of standardized testing this spring. Kirylo admits his reason is different than most.

What do the Common Core State Standards have in common with congressional Democrats and the Chicago Cubs?

They all had a really rough year.

Of the 45 states that first adopted the academic standards, many spent 2014 talking about repeal. In Oklahoma (as well as Indiana and South Carolina), it wasn't just talk. The Legislature voted to drop the Core in May. And Gov. Mary Fallin, a longtime champion of the Common Core, signed the repeal in June.

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