Boy, that was fast.
It took only a few hours for US Chamber of Commerce CEO Thomas J. Donahue to respond to conservative columnist George Will’s shredding of Common Core and its proponents. Will called out the Chamber and others for engaging in “political dishonesty” intended to keep Core’s “nature and purpose to remain as cloudy as possible for as long as possible.”
Writing in the Washington Post, Donahue “set the record straight” with the usual talking point that Core”prepares students to succeed in the 21st-century economy.” Like all Core-ists, he doesn’t say how he knows this nor does he have data which supports such an airy claim. Donahue also trotted out the dubious claim that Core was a “state-led effort” while ignoring what Will characterized as “the purchase of the state’s obedience” to Core with Race to the Top grants.
Methinks the CEO doth protest too much, methinks.
The standards which Donahue is so enamored rolls back instruction of such Shakespearean quotes like the one with which he was just easily mocked. American kids need “informational texts, ” you see…to prepare them for the 21st century economy or something. Still, Donahue sought to change the subject in his response to Will.
Mr. Will and others should direct their outrage at school systems that tolerate low standards and churn out kids ill-prepared for college or a career. Politics and misinformed arguments shouldn’t get in the way of helping our kids, businesses and country succeed.
Will is obviously informed on the history of federal meddling into education policy and wouldn’t agree with Donahue’s last assertion. Will wrote this yesterday:
What is ludicrous is Common Core proponents disdaining concerns related to this fact: Fifty years of increasing Washington input into K-12 education has coincided with disappointing cognitive outputs from schools. Is it eccentric that it is imprudent to apply to K-12 education the federal touch that has given us HealthCare.gov?
Donahue’s rapid answer to Will’s column indicates there’s some sort of Common Core rapid response team operating out of a bunker somewhere. Only three paragraphs long, it seemed canned. Especially so the second paragraph which was boilerplate stuff.
But the rapid response to Will also shows how much pressure the Chamber will be putting on state republican legislators like Vero Beach representative Debbie Mayfield, who is sponsor of a bill (HB 25) which would halt implementation of Core by the state BOE. Mayfield has an “A” rating from Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence in Education so it’s clear her opposition to Core is a principled on.
Meanwhile, red state Kentucky republicans are contemplating a repeal of Common Core.
Mainstream republicans are continuing to say NO to Common Core.
UPDATE: Missouri Education Watchdog has more.