Patricia Sullivan ran for United States House of Representatives under the Tea Party banner in 2010 and has emerged as a key leader in the state’s Tea Party movement. She was in Tallahassee this week and spoke at a rally to oppose Common Core Standards. StateImpact’s Gina Jordan has more:
Patricia Sullivan home schools her kids and is concerned about the changes home school families may have to make. Students who want to go to college, she said, will have to take Common Core tests.
The two companies which produce the most commonly used college entrance exams, the SAT and ACT, have said they will tie their tests to Common Core standards.
Her work is part of a sudden turn nationally against the Common Core standards, and supporters — such as former Gov. Jeb Bush — who have been leading the effort.
Sullivan gave dozens of protesters gathered at the Capitol this week a pep talk.
“I’ve been getting alerts from organizations such as Americans For Prosperity, FreedomWorks, The Tea Party Network, The Heritage Foundation, ParentalRights.org,” Sullivan said. “Two weeks ago, the Republican National Committee came out with a resolution opposing the implementation of Common Core standards.
“So, if all of these conservative organizations have come out and are alerting citizens to the dangers and the red flags,” Sullivan said, “why is it that we have conservative leadership ramming it through our state legislature? That should cause us to pause.”
Sullivan teared up when she told the group: “At this point in the game I haven’t found a leader in our legislature yet. But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a leader that was born to stand for this cause.”
Read Jordan’s stirring interview with Sullivan here.
Sullivan is essentially calling out Governor Rick Scott and the republicans in the Florida legislature. Tea Party and Libertarian displeasure for a key part of their education agenda creates real political problems for them and opens the door for moderate Democrats to pick up seats in 2014.
Moreover, Florida’s adoption of Common Core has implications in Parent Trigger. The initial roll-out of Common Core’s PARCC tests will create a massive amount of failures – one study estimated that only 25 percent of students would pass the tests. This will cause a massive increase in failing schools that would be targets for Parent Trigger