By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Tuesday, July 22, responding to a rising wave of opposition to the controversial new Common Core, Republican North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory (R) signed legislation that includes the review and revision of the State’s reading and math curriculum in K-12 schools.
The law directs the North Carolina Board of Education to rewrite the Common Core standards based on recommendations from a new 11-member standards advisory commission. The unpopular Common Core standards would remain in place until the new standards are completed. The new curriculum likely will not be ready until the 2015/2016 school year.
The commission can choose to integrate parts of the current Common Core into the new curriculum or jettison large parts of the program in favor of new curriculum or return the state to portions of past curriculum.
Governor McCrory said in a statement that the law initiates a “much-needed, comprehensive and thorough review of standards. No standards will change without the approval of the State Board of Education. I especially look forward to the recommendations that will address testing issues so we can measure what matters most for our teachers, parents and students.”
In Louisiana, popular Governor Bobby Jindal (R) has ordered that the controversial standards be jettisoned. That executive order is being defied by Louisiana School Superintendent John White who has instructed Louisiana’s school boards to implement the new national standards anyway and to ignore the governor’s executive order. Recent meetings between White and Jindal have failed to reach any kind of solution to the impasse.
Also on Tuesday, July 22 the Associated Press is reporting that a bipartisan group of 17 Louisiana legislators have filed a lawsuit against Louisiana’s embattled state school board. The suit claims that Louisiana’s Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and the state department of education failed to follow the state’s Administrative Procedures Act (APA) for implementing the Common Core standards. The suit claims that the APA requires public notice, a 90-day comment period, and legislative oversight be provided prior to any changes being made to Louisiana’s education standards and that these requirements were not met in the case of the Common Core standards. The lawmakers are asking that the court issue an injunction to block the standards from being implemented.
Louisiana State Representative Brett Geymann (R) told Breitbart News, “There are many statutes in Louisiana that require the use of the Administrative Procedures Act to implement a new rule. The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and Department of Education are not exempt from the APA and did not follow the law in implementing Common Core; therefore, they denied the public the opportunity to be a part of the process.” “We are hopeful the court will rule Common Core invalid and we can move forward with developing our own standards with local control.”
Sara Wood, an attorney and parent opposed to Common Core told Breitbart News that she believes White needs to be removed immediately as state superintendent. “The longer BESE continues on this Common Core/PARCC path as a Board, it will continue to erode any trust in the ability of this Board to direct education in Louisiana and will bring more havoc to [the] lives of children, parents and teachers.” “In continuing to ignore parents and teachers and to defy the laws and leader of our state – Governor Jindal, and by refusing to do a proper RFP for the assessments, these principal actors are only digging a deeper hole for themselves and destroying the public perception and credibility of BESE.”
Meanwhile on Tuesday, July 22 anti-Common Core activists attended Blaze Television movie events Tuesday night in over 600 theatres across the country including in Alabama. The ‘We Will Not Conform’ event educated participants on strategies for advocating for repeal of the controversial new standards.
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant (R) has recently announced his ardent opposition to the Common Core education standards on Thursday, June 19. Governor Bryant told the ‘Jackson Clarion-Ledger’, “I think Common Core is a failed program, and the United States is beginning to realize that.” “Governors all across America are realizing states can do it better.”
While Common Core is under assault in many states, in Alabama, Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R) from Anniston and the Republican controlled state school board have defied resolutions by the Alabama Republican Party Executive Committee demanding that Alabama also opt out of the unproven and untested Common Core educational standards. Bills to repeal Common Core were introduced in both 2013 and 2014, but lacked the support of the Republican leadership and did not pass.
Whether or not the state of Alabama will continue implementing the unpopular new standards or will heed the growing calls of parents and conservatives alike to reject the new standards is a matter for the legislature to decide in the 2015 legislative session.