Comments about ‘The conservative battle over Common Core Standards’

Return to article »

Published: Thursday, Jan. 2 2014 4:00 a.m. MST

Comments
  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Most recommended
Sunset
Orem, UT

There is so much political controversy surrounding Common Core that I find baffling. So much misinformation is being thrown around. Above all, Common Core does NOT impose a nation-wide curriculum. This claim is a complete lie. It sets benchmark standards, for better or worse, from which to judge a student's progress. There are legitimate criticisms of these standards and how they are measured and implemented, but our schools absolutely must raise the bar.

The real problem extreme conservatives have is articulated on the first page of this story: "Next, all curriculums (sic) are subject to ideological manipulation, and from what I’ve seen of the proposed core, there is a rigorous left lean in what they are proposing.”
Apparently, the far right sees education as yet another battleground in which the "liberal elite" are waging war against us. What exactly is a "rigorous left lean" in the Common Core? The fact that it heavily favors critical thinking (heaven forbid!) or emphasizes empirical evidence? I don't understand the issue here, except that this is just another mechanism conservatives can use to launch more culture wars.

Phred
Ogden, UT

The problem with national standards lies in funding and control. "If you like your health care plan, you can keep it. Period!? (unless we decide it is substandard junk and doesn't meet the national standard.)

Note this word of warning from James Madison on the subject of Federal involvement at the local level where it does not belong:

"If Congress can apply money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may establish teachers in every State, county, and parish, and pay them out of the public Treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post roads. In short, every thing, from the highest object of State legislation, down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress; for every object I have mentioned would admit the application of money, and might be called, if Congress pleased, provisions for the general welfare."

JayTee
Sandy, UT

Considering the billions of dollars each state pours into public schooling, the LAST thing we need is our $17,000,000,000,000+ worse-than-bankrupt Federal government meddling in schooling. They have messed up literally everything else they've touched, and they will continue the unbroken streak whenever they're allowed to have influence and/or control. What we need in public schooling is more discipline, more individual responsibility, more incentives, more accountability, more competition, and more creative thinking. An expensive national straightjacket is the LAST thing public schooling needs. Notice I say public "schooling," because very often education isn't schooling, and schooling isn't education. We need to change our parameters of thinking and definitions to reflect reality.

TLFinSLC
Salt Lake City, UT

Critical thinking is not what the Common Core offers. Have you seen the problems in the workbooks? In math kids are penalized if they use the shortest route to the correct answer, and are rewarded for taking a round about way to an estimate. In English and writing the material used promotes ideas to elementary kids such as trying to find a reason to be dissatisfied and create contention with their parents. Other problems have them correctly identifying their parents as nags. We all want to raise the standards, but what is being offered doesn't do that. Until I see examples that actually do raise the bar I am not going to trust them when they say that teachers can choose their own curriculum. My youngest daughter went through the math common core and she was much farther behind when she reached junior high than her siblings had been who did not do common core. My son was doing algebra in 4th-5th grade, then in 6th grade he was no longer allowed to work to his level and was required to stay with the rest of the class on the new common core. That is not raising standards.

RedWings
CLEARFIELD, UT

If Common COre is all about "standards", why are the following happening in our schools:

1) One of the books on the "approved" list for reading in High School is "The Bluest Eye". This book is written from the viewpoint of a child molester. It is obscene, disgusting, and glamorizes a sick and twisted viewpoint. Yet Common Core allows teachers to require this in their classes.

2) At another school, a persuasive writing assignment had the premise that the faculty were the Nazi Party. Students had to write a persuasive essay on why everything was the Jew's fault. When parents complained, the Principal told them that he thought is was a good idea and allowed the assignment.

Based on these (and other) instances, I not only disgree with Common Core, I wonder about the integrtiy and morals of the people teaching the next generation. I worry very much for my grandchildren, who will grow up under this type of alleged "teaching".

el steve o
Herriman, UT

This article is utterly, and undeniably, pure propaganda. It is full of distraction and deceptive manipulation techniques. This whole issue has nothing to do with what recognizable business or corrupt progressive politician thinks about it (and the article flaunts this meaningless resource around as if it means anything). And I picked all of this up from reading the first page!

Look at the big picture here, in context with the countless other destructions of personal liberty that are taking place in society. We may very well get the tyranny we deserve. This is a Pravda piece. Kim Jung Un would be proud.

GiuseppeG
Murray, Utah

I only know what they're doing to the Math depts in our schools related to this just sucks.

idablu
Idaho Falls, ID

From the article:
"The Common Core standards set the minimum level of math proficiency that all students must reach. Four model course pathways are included as suggestions for structuring high school math programs. One is the traditional U.S. model, which calls for two algebra courses and a geometry course. A compacted version of that model prepares students to take calculus or other college-level math courses in their senior year. Many U.S. public schools already offer both models.

Integrated course sequences based on those used in some European and Asian countries are also outlined. Decisions about which math classes to teach and how to structure them are made at state and local levels."

The fact remains that most school districts are NOT using the one model pathway that allows for advanced math. Thus the current curriculums used for math in all the school districts are very dumbed down.

I keep seeing articles like this that praise how great Common Core and how it will make our kids smarter. But in reality what I am seeing in the kids' curriculum (particularly in math and spelling) is vastly inferior to old standards and what Core Curriculum claims to be.

idablu
Idaho Falls, ID

(continued)
So when we point out to local teachers that the current curriculum is not challenging our kids (especially in math and reading) we get the response that "this is the curriculum we have to use. There is nothing we can do about it."

So who is lying here--the advocates and authors of Common Core or the local teachers teaching our kids?

And you really wonder why there is so much mistrust over this issue? The push from the federal government and in particular from this agenda-driven Administration raises all kinds of red flags in the minds of responsible parents.

ute alumni
SLC, UT

anytime the feds get involved in anything it is bad news. the likes of barry, harry and nancy dictating "standards" is amazing considering many feel they have no STANDARDS. another atempt to control the masses. worked great for germany, cambodia, vietnam and the list goes on.

Scouter
Midvale, UT

Wow, these comments blow my mind. Many of you must have issues in your local schools because this is surely not indicative of our experience. Those who are suggesting the math is dumbed down must not have children in school or they have poor schools. My very bright child (elementary age) is still being challenged in math, and he's doing things I NEVER did at his age. In 3rd grade, he has already mastered multiplication, they've moved on to division, and they are also now doing fractions. They do more story problems than I ever did. And you know what? The kids are better at them. (I go and tutor math at our local school once a week.) There is much more emphasis under Common Core on reasoning and critical thinking. I have no problem with that. There's also more informational reading, and that's a good thing. Much of what we read and actually use daily in life isn't literature; it's informational writing. I see more emphasis on vocabulary, and I think that's great. I have to agree that Common Core does raise the standards.

Northern
Logan, UT

The fed needs to get out of everyone's lives. Intentions aside, not one program the Feds have introduced is self sustaining or good in the long run. From social security, usps, welfare programs to the DOE whose mission in 1960 was to get the US out of dependency on foreign energy.
Politics will never have the best outcomes even with some having good intentions.

Common core is not going to help, only make things worse for Utah.

Justmythoughts
Provo, UT

There is such hysteria over the common core... I don't get it. Seeing how our Utah students compare nationally to other states makes sense to me.

faithinus
South Weber, UT

Sunday's show on Common Core sounded like an advertisement supporting Common Core. It did not address the HUGE problems with cc. It takes away the rights of the parents and state to determine the child's education. It has HUGE data mining on each child and his family--keeping track of personal information to be used by anyone that has any access to records. It ruins literature-not allowing the teaching of reading of great standards--government pamphlet reading is encouraged. The mathematics is a nightmare, confusing, and requires too many steps to reach an answer. It takes Christianity and celebrations around Christmas and Easter out of the schools--another attack on Christianity. It will direct that student into what the government's plan for where that student should work in a career instead of allowing the student to find his own path. The federal government has not right to dictate how my child will learn in school--it needs to be the parents and state that decide. CC is in effect in all Communist countries---we don't need it here or want it!!! This show demonstrated bias to push Common Core. Poorly done.

Kings Court
Alpine, UT

Ironically, those who are against the Common Core (including politicians) in Utah are the very supporters of PCE (Parents For Choice In Education), a subsidiary of ALEC whose "private" corporations have had a hand in promoting the Common Core. We've all seen the Exxon Mobil (ALEC member) commercials on TV backing the Core Core. A lot of our legislators belong to ALEC, yet I don't think those who are against the Common Core realize that the politicians they support are members of ALEC. It is a tangled web, but I thought I should just share that information before they ware wined and dined by PCE and ALEC this legislative session. Personally, I like the rigor of the Common Core, but I think there is way, way, way too much testing involved with it though. It also marginalizes important subject areas such as Social Studies/Government and your Fine Arts courses---things that increase innovation skills.

Oatmeal
Woods Cross, UT

I am a public school teacher with twenty years' experience. I have two children in the secondary system. The Common Core is an absolute disaster in Math. Scores have not gone up, they have declined. The English standards promote non-fiction literature at the expense of fine literature. It is as if the writers of the standards have decided that the average student will never see college, so they are now preparing them in mass for a trade.

If we want to see how our students are doing compared to the nation, administer the ACT to all high school students. There is no rational reason to have coast-to-coast standards. In spite of previous comments, standards DO determine the curriculum. They become the tail that wags the dog.

If you as a person value literature, want students to have the opportunity to succeed at high math (think AP Calculus), or value community/state control of public education, you need to contact your legislators and get Utah away from the Common Core. It isn't good for kids.

faithinus
South Weber, UT

How willingly and easy it is in our country to take freedom from the people and the state's and give it to the federal government. People seem happy to have their rights and freedoms taken away. We have Common Core now--our governor brought it into the state. It take 70% of the great standards of literature and substitutes reading government pamphlets in its place. Math is a nightmare of step after step after step--it is a horrible way to teach children math. Data mining of all the students tests, grades, disciplinary actions, and worst of all personal FAMILY data is part of common core and this file on each student can be used by anyone with access to these records for their own purposes. The state and the parents have been thrown to the curb and the government has taken it over. Our governor did a great disservice to his state letting it in. He said, "If it becomes a problem, I'll take it out." Good luck on that--you've let the devil in the door and he's not leaving.

NeilT
Clearfield, UT

Just My Thoughts. The hysteria is coming from the Glenn Beck listeners. The irony is the far right has their own agenda just like the left does. In Texas school boards are requiring teaching far right dogma like a shadow group is promoting a new world order and the constitution does not require separation of church and state. With that in mind I do support local control of schools as long as we don't force our religious views on students. That is to common in places like Utah and Texas.

Go2
Utah, UT

I have heard too much about the Core from people that have never read them! The above comments about workbooks and questionable literature - none of these are in the core. The core are standards - learning standards for MATH and LANGUAGE Arts. www.corestandards.org/the-standards try reading them before you form opinions. (Or search for Utah Common Core)

Oatmeal
Woods Cross, UT

NeilT, and Go2:

I am not a Glenn Beck listener. I am a public school teacher who has seen the effects of the Common Core. I have read all of the standards. Utah should RUN away!

to comment

DeseretNews.com encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.
About comments