COLUMBIA, S.C. – Today, Palmetto Policy Forum released a new report titled How Common Core Went Wrong: Bringing Common Sense to Education Standards in South Carolina. Authored by Forum Senior Fellow, Dr. Oran Smith, the report’s Executive Summary states:
The advent of Common Core State Standards (CCSS) has ignited a firestorm among parents, educators and policy makers. This paper attempts to cut through the haze with a much needed common sense conservative analysis. In it, we provide a thumbnail history of educational standards in America, how CCSS went wrong, and what South Carolina can do to maintain control of our standards and promote the rigorous accountability our students need to equip them for success in school and in life.
Additionally, the report outlines a timeline of how education standards have evolved in South Carolina, how other states are dealing with Common Core, a “Common Core Common Sense Report Card,” as well as an eight-step blueprint to reclaim control of South Carolina’s standards:
RESTRUCTURE state education governance to insure democratic control of future standard adoption.
REVISIT South Carolina’s commitment to the federally-funded SMARTER Balanced testing consortium.
REVISE Common Core Math and ELA standards to insure state control and reflect South Carolina priorities.
REJECT future federal funding that commits South Carolina to a particular standard, curriculum or test.
RESTRICT the sharing of South Carolina students’ personal data.
FREEZE adoption of any further Common Core standards, such as Science or Social Studies.
FACILITATE a conversation with South Carolina parents about what future standards should look like.
FUND the demands of current standards only if it represents a net savings over reversing course and local control is restored.
Commenting on the release of the report, Forum President Ellen Weaver said, “Rigorous standards are critical to prepare our students to compete in the global economy. However, parental control of what is taught in our local schools is a fundamental principle on which Common Core State Standards have failed to make the grade.”
She continued, “The Common Core debate has generated a unique opportunity to engage parents, educators and business leaders in a thoughtful conversation about what we expect of South Carolina’s students. We trust this report will be a useful resource for policy makers and parents to help sift through the heated rhetoric and create a platform for high-quality, locally-directed academic excellence.”
The online version of the full report may be found HERE.