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Conservatives Are Completely Wrong On Common Core (BenSwann.com)

I’ve seen the conservative outrage against Common Core. These arguments are always the same. Conservatives rail against Common Core because it is “anti-Israel, anti-gun, anti-capitalism, anti-blah blah blah…”

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Common core is dangerous,

but not because it often espouses liberal values. Involved parents can can teach children their own values and overcome this.

It is bad because it seeks to deny the individual talents, ambitions, and interests of children by placing priority on certain subjects deemed most important for creating a steady supply of work ready people.
It seeks to make every student conform rather than to allow them to determine what they want to learn and even become. Teachers, often against their own beliefs, neglect history, science, art, music, etc. to make sure their students do well in math, reading, and writing because the standards demand it. The world needs farmers, and artists, and cooks, and creative people who will find solutions to the problems we face. Common core makes students well "common" and asks them to conform to a mold.

private email on Common Core (math)

From one of the reviewers:

"Parts are quite reasonable, but in the end it is entirely a
political document and, overall, it is basically a complete
return to the CA 1992 standards, though this is a bit subtle.
What happens is that the first chapter (on Mathematical
Practices) is just a reprise of the '89 NCTM standards
philosophy of mathematics. But then the remaining detailed
standards are often very reasonable and mathematically sound."


One of the issues is something that used to be called "tracking". There used to be 2 or 3 education tracks in each school that attempted to sort students out by how fast they learned and what their interests were. This would allow students interested in, say, auto mechanics to spend time in a shop class. These sort of programs were pretty much eliminated when legal action was taken against multi-tiered programs. It seems that all too many minority students were put in the lower tracks and once in, could not escape to the upper (college bound) track. Now all students, regardless of ability have to be in the same classroom. Clearly the faster learners are at risk in this setting as the class drifts to the lowest common denominator. It is dangerous in that the future scientists and engineers are not being trained as they should be. Of course, the trades also suffer. I can see both sides of the issue. Sort of. This has nothing to do with Common Core.

I'm not sure what the reviewer meant about Common Core being a political document. It might very well be tilted towards leftist ideals.

common core again

There was a pretty lively debate on Common Core, which includes a little bit of discussion on "Fuzzy Math", and constructivism in education here:


I may have gone overboard in places, but I'm happy to continue the discussion as you like.

The thread is pretty jumbled now, but I'd start by reading the entry that starts "not that simple" that's still on page 1.

LG - Thank You

It is great to see someone speak on this issue rationally and correctly. Often when an issue is heavily politicized people speak on it without a clue.

I like that the standards are more literacy and skill based than content based. I do not like that they are federal standards adopted by states. Centralization is not the answer.

(Sorry this was supposed to be a response to LG below, not its own comment.)

You might want to read

What's at Stake in the K-12 Standards Wars by Dr. Sandra Stotsky if you can still locate a copy.

Basically, is a compilation of chapters written by different authors active in the standards wars in about the year 2000. It details where the California Standards (2001) came from as well as NCLB and Common Core.

Maybe this link will work: http://tinyurl.com/kygdulf

common core is not cirriculum

The math lessons aren't fine at all in that the curriculum used might be ineffective.

Common Core is nothing more than a set of "content" standards in various subjects suggested by the feds and adopted by the states. From there the book publishers will write curriculum aligned to the standards that is also then adopted by the various states, which might be good or bad. Publishers tend to write the least number of programs they can get away with, so they will write for a major market and neighboring states simply adopt what they want from what's available. (California is a major market, so we set the bar for many states.)

There's an argument in education circles if such content standards should represent a "floor or ceiling". Many fear that "women and minorities" won't do well against high standards, so push for the lowest possible standards, which Common Core represents. You know this is true since neither Jim Milgram or Sandra Stotsky would sign off on them as part of the review team.

If you believe in states rights, you should be opposed to federal standards, regardless of their quality.

This was discussed thoroughly in another recent thread.

There was a photo

of a specific math lesson in the meme I was referencing below. I wouldn't claim that every implementation of common core at the lesson level will be fine. It all depends on the implementers. And I doubt they have any potential to be optimum, either, because by the time all that work goes into implementation, willingness to be flexible for an individual student's needs goes out the window.

I have my criticisms of common core, I'm just pointing out the moral panic criticisms that don't hold water, yet are treated as sacred as an example of the grip the left/right paradigm has on people.

Defend Liberty!

Even some of the specific criticisms

of common core that I've heard don't hold water, but I can't get that point across to people who are invested in the left/right paradigm. They're more interested in the drama of panicking that the next generation is being taught horrible, incompetent things and that common core is a new level of incompetence.

My gentle explanations of why different types of estimation are valid in some situations fell on clogged ears. Or, ears that translated any type of differing opinion as "godless, leftist liberalism trying to undermine civilization".

I should have just said: "No, you don't have to abandon your whole paradigm just to recognize that that internet meme isn't pointing out a flaw of common core. The children's math lesson was just fine. And nowhere in that worksheet is there proof of anything they WEREN'T taught so drop that silly "aren't being taught accurate sums" argument right quick. It's a flaw in your education if you don't understand that estimation is SUPPOSED to produce a less accurate answer and, no, if your education wasn't rigorous enough that you understand how to use the different types of estimation, then you probably shouldn't even be using the one type you were taught. But don't complain about the next generation learning it properly. If information that undermines an opportunity to criticize the left is unacceptable to you, go ahead and keep sharing this meme. Otherwise, simply move on to a valid criticism. There are plenty to go around."

Defend Liberty!

Oh how I hope this sort of logic spreads

This article sums up the whole problem with the false "Left vs Right" paradigm... beautiful illustration of how both sides support tyranny as long as it happens to be slanted to align with their "social values".

At their inceptions, the #Liberty, #OccupyWallStreet and #TeaParty movements all had the same basic goal... What happened?

This is one of the best articles that BenSwann.com

has put out, imo. It is brilliant!

"What if the American people learn the truth" - Ron Paul