Comments about ‘Join the discussion: Is Common Core just misunderstood?’

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Published: Wednesday, Aug. 27 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

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play by the rules

Look at who profiteers from Common Core, it's big business. Huckabee would not want big business to get in the way of his business aspirations now would he. I think Common Core is one of those issues where those on the left and those on the right can come together and agree that local control is the best answer rather than huge profits to the corporate sponsors.


Common Core merely states that by the end of each grade level students should know certain facts and how to do certain math functions.

As far as who profits from Common Core, yes, there are only a handful of companies that provide educational supplies to American schools - but that situation predates Common Core as anyone who has followed the recent text book controversies knows. For all the talk of "local control," local school districts do not write their own textbooks or tests as doing so would be extremely costly, labor intensive, and redundant.

How Common Core is implemented is up to the individual school districts. (And yes, one if the main proponents of Common Core thinks that each state should only have one school district unless they have a really large city, in which case the city should have its own, but nothing on Common Core promotes or creates that situation.)

Irony Guy
Bountiful, Utah

Common Core is a set of innocuous standards that encourage students to think a little out of the box. I've read the language standards and they seem perfectly good to me.

Norman, OK

Until Common Core was brought to the battlefield by those with strict partisan ties, few people gave one wink to CC. Most people did not even know what was being taught in their schools; and moreover they did not truly care. I have read from the standards and they seem to be quality to me. Too bad Oklahoma got rid of them.

It is a sad fact that in the US most people know next to nothing about a subject, yet listen to vigilantes from the side of their choosing, then vote accordingly. I have heard that the standards are too low from some opponents, then that they are too hard from other opponents. Which is it? Or do you oppose the standards because Glenn Beck says so? The opposition was quoted in the referenced survey article as being that people are misinformed as it allows for cheap and easy recruitment to the anti-Common Core movement. The opposition thrives on misinformation. Do we really want to hop on the bandwagon of misinformation? I support the ideals of Common Core and hope that everyone can actually read the Core, then make a decision.


Common Core is necessary for a country of our size. We need all our youth to be educated to a certain level. My worry is that the bar will be lowered rather than raised in certain situations.
In addition to our schools, we as parents need to always be diligent in ensuring our children like to learn. You get out of public school what you want. Some people drop out and quit, other attain greatness, yet we all went to the public schools. So we all know that you can get out of school what you put into it. With Common Core adaption this will be no different.
If the level of learning is below your child, you had better be aware of this!

Logical citizen
Bountiful, UT

I hope that now that people see that many do not understand what the Common Core standards are nor how they came about, they will actually read about the history of them rather than listening to conservative radio hosts trying to rile people up -- or their similarly uninformed neighbors. These standards were started by a set of REPUBLICAN governors -- so they grew from states' desires, responding to the business community's concerns about inconsistent and outdated standards across districts and states. Then, once the U.S. Department of Education came on board years later to encourage their adoption, all of a sudden people became suspicious. They are basic math and literacy standards, which do not dictate how or WHAT to teach. What a waste of energy while we have hundreds of thousands of foster children in America who need help, kids who go hungry every night, and sick children with no health insurance.

Durham, NC

DN - thanks for shedding some light on this discussion. It has been incredably frustrating seeing people with political motives not at all tied to the core issues here try to hi-jack this into something this isn't.

This problem of if you don't like what you are hearing from one source, just change sources until you hear what you want to hear is becoming epidemic. There are no corporations making hay with common-core dollars. As said earlier, the issue of text books and their cost has been a problem that long predated common core.

But people want to be angry, and find a reason why their little look alikes aren't achieving the high expectations they have of them, without looking in the mirror and realizing that the person who can most impact their kids academic performance is looking back at them.

If it wasn't common core, it would be some other excuse why their kid is under performing.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Why would it be misunderstood? It's from the Government! EVERYTHING from the Government is simple to understand...

I mean I can't think of a single government program that's hard to understand or implement or misunderstood by ANYBODY... do you?

USS Enterprise, UT

It is funny, most of the people who love Common COre have not had to deal with it directly. They have looked over standards that sound good or else think that nationalizing the standards is good.

Here is the problem. When you actually have to deal with your kids and their homework that they don't understand because they now have to learn 3 different ways to do a mathematical operation that are each different and confusing, compared to the 1 simple and logical way you learned. When you deal with that combined with your child coming home with assignments where they have more misspelled words than correctly spelled words you begin to realize that Common Core doesn't educate, nor do the kids learn to think out of the box. The standards reinforce thinking with the government pre-defined box.

Remember the government writes the tax code that is very confusing, do you honestly think that they are capable of writing an educational standard that isn't filled with garbage?

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Your comment is right. If this standard is achievable by every student in Detroit, Chicago, and absolutely every city, every student (including those who don't speak English), and every School District in the whole United States, regardless of local or individual strengths, weaknesses, and special needs (high immigrant population, poverty, lack of student and parental interest, etc)... then it probably isn't the right standard for most Utah children who's parents are used to their kids reading and performing ABOVE grade level.

I would not be happy if my kids were reading and performing at the level of an inner-city disadvantaged student... and that was their teacher's target for them (because that's all the "National Standard" requires)...

As long as my teachers throw the National Standard out the window as soon as they see that it's WAY lower than most students are capable of... I will be happy.


@ Redshirt: I have had to deal with it directly - I have also had to deal with moving from one location to another (often in the same general area, such as the Salt Lake valley, and has to deal with my child being ahead of her new classmates if we go one direction or behind her classmates if we go the other.

@ 2 bits: Yeah, sorry - I've lived on other states - the Utah educational system is not that highly ranked and doesn't really require that much when compared to some other states.

Deep Space 9, Ut

To "Maudine" what does common core have to do with moving? Are you saying that even with common core what is being taught in the classroom is not the same?

So does this mean that you agree that the Common Core standards are a failure and result in a poor education at best?

Norman, OK

@2Bits. Spoken like a true east sider. It seems that a lot of opponents of Common Core come from affluent, predominantly "white" (and maybe some Asian) areas. I hate to say it, but much of Utah suffers from the problems you proudly excluded yourself from: immigrant population, poverty, lack of interest from child and parent. I commend you for taking interest in your children, but keep in mind that Utah as a whole has education issues that originate at a local level.

I work as a math teacher and believe me when I say that Utah is horribly bad at math. It is disgusting how bad math education is in Utah. It is filthy filthy filthy bad. If your children are above grade level, you are in the far minority. Utah needs to raise their standards in a big bad way. All of this talk of a "new type" of teaching math is NOT coming from Common Core. It is coming from programs YOUR school (aka, local government) has chosen to use.


@ Redshirt: No, I am saying without universal standards, such as Common Core, schools teach different things - and when you move from one school district to another, even though you are in the same state and less than 10 miles away from where you lived before, your high school senior may suddenly find he or she does not have enough credits to graduate because of the differences in what is taught.

Learning multiple ways to a math problem is not a bad thing.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I don't know about an evil "East-sider"... but definitely was one who always tested as reading way above my grade level (it really wasn't very hard when I was in elementary school, I was always way above my grade level and most kids in my class were, I always assumed it was because kids in some other parts of the country weren't very good readers.

I always wanted to test above my grade level, and expected the same of my kids. If this new standard is accepted as "what we expect of our kids because it's good enough for Detroit kids)... then I think we are LOWERING our standards.

I'm talking about Midvalien's statement, "We need all our youth to be educated to a certain level"...

If we REALLY want all our youth educated to the SAME level... then I want out. Sign me up for Private School!

The Educator
South Jordan , UT

It's always interesting to see people like redshirt and 2 bits comment on these issues. Have you ever taught a high school class? Why is it that those furthest from the situation feel a need to weigh in? Trusting in their opinion would be like trusting someone who was a registered nurse and career politician to be state superintendent.

Sandy, UT

What is actually needed is structure, discipline, personal accountability, and personal responsibility. Right now the public "education" system is mostly a tax-funded babysitting service, where the top 10% have parental involvement and are actually challenged to succeed, and most of the rest are just serving their time and going along for the ride. When I was in school in Idaho decades ago, either you cut it or you flunked--and it was YOUR responsibility to decide between the two. There were no nursery or day-care facilities, because it was a SCHOOL, not a day-care center. If you didn't know English, then sorry . . . come back when you do, because English is the language we speak and use, and we don't feel the need to accommodate every living organism on the planet. It worked, and it worked well. It was actual EDUCATION. No new and flashy program is going to take the place of personal initiative. Sorry.

Steve Cottrell
Centerville, UT

For those who worry that Common Core Standards are not sufficiently demanding, please understand that the core -- whether the Utah State Core first published back in the 1980's, or Common Core -- is a set of minimum standards by which our students will be judged by almost every state and national testing program. Every school in Utah and almost every classroom teacher has offered instruction well beyond the core. They will continue to do so.

Poplar Grove, UT

You say that you always wanted your kids to read above grade level. But for them to read above grade level, there has to be a way to determine what grade level is. I've read over the common core standards for 2nd grade(my kids in 2nd grade) All it looks like to me is a way to determine what grade level is. For example, second grade common core standards are that you can group objects and determine if there is an even or odd number, solve addition and subtraction word problems, count to 1000 by 1's, 5's and 10's, be able to look at numbers in their number and word form, and determine if they are less than, greater than or the same number. There are similar things(that i'm forgetting at the moment) ALl it seems to be doing is establishing what skills your kid needs to know to be at grade level. I don't know what the fuss is about.

Durham, NC

I love it.... parents that expect their kids to be above what they are supposed to be. Another grand example of exceptionalism. "my kids are special".... in particular, they are much brighter than an inner city kid.

I got some news for you... there are a bunch of city kids running leading US corporations today... that didn't come from "exceptional" schools. I mean, you wouldn't want you kid from Utah to end up like Don Thompson, who is CEO of McDonalds - a black man who "who was born in Chicago, grew up near the Cabrini–Green housing project. A bright student who started the sixth grade at the age of ten, Thompson, due to the gang violence and crime that began to spread throughout the area in the late 1960's and 1970's, was later moved by his grandmother to live with relatives in Indianapolis, where he attended North Central High School. Thompson is a graduate of Purdue University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in 1983 in electrical engineering. He also holds an honorary doctorate from Excelsior College."

Nope - your kids need to be much more exceptional than any inner city kids like this.

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