From Ed Week's Anthony Cody - Common Core Standards: Ten Colossal Errors.
As for Arne Duncan, here's what he is doing in service of Common Core. Understand that there is tremendous pushback across the country and getting louder. Hence his over-the-top remarks.
From the Network for Public Education:
He also said:
- Foes of Common Core b/c scores plummet, white suburban moms realize local schools not 'as good as they thought'
- To get suburban moms on board w/Common Core, @arneduncan says remind them their kids are competing globally, need higher standards.
Perdido Street School blog lays this all out and includes conservative public education writer, Rick Hess' thoughts and how Hess called this tactic out before Duncan used it. (Hess is far too conservative for me BUT he absolutely is dead-on in his assessments of how ed reformers shoot themselves in the foot.)
From the Washington Post:
In June, he told a convention of newspaper editors that Core critics were misinformed at best and laboring under paranoid delusions at worst. Duncan said:
The Common Core has become a rallying cry for fringe groups that claim it is a scheme for the federal government to usurp state and local control of what students learn. An op-ed in the New York Times called the Common Core “a radical curriculum.” It is neither radical nor a curriculum. … When the critics can’t persuade you that the Common Core is a curriculum, they make even more outlandish claims. They say that the Common Core calls for federal collection of student data. For the record, it doesn’t, we’re not allowed to, and we won’t. And let’s not even get into the really wacky stuff: mind control, robots, and biometric brain mapping.There are people on the political fringe, right and left, who oppose the Core initiative for different reasons, but that’s not where most of the substantive opposition is coming from.
Educators and researchers questioned the way the standards were written (whether, for example, there was any or enough input from K-12 classroom teachers) and some criticized the content of the standards (while others praised it).
Some critics don’t believe in standards-based education, and others felt it usurped local authority.
More recently, tea party members have accused the administration of a federal takeover of public education, extreme right-wing rhetoric that clouds a real discussion about the Core. This year some states led by Republican governors began to pull away from the standards.
Protests by educators, parents, students and others began to grow as it became clear that the Core implementation was being rushed, and some students were being given tests said to be Core-aligned even though teachers hadn’t had enough time to create material around the standards.