Red States Looking to Dump Common Core, So Where’s Jeb Bush Now?

Via Shane Vander Hart has this from Restore Oklahoma Public Education:

The “Resolution To Protect Oklahoma’s Education System” was passed today (January 18, 2014) by the Oklahoma GOP Committee during their regular meeting. This resolution records the will of the Oklahoma Republican Party Executive Committee to direct Republican floor leaders to both slate Common Core bills for hearing in Committees as well as Republican Committee chairs to allow a hearing for Common Core bills so that an HONEST debate on the issue may be had and citizens may be directly represented by their lawmakers.

From Brietbart about Indiana:

Governor Mike Pence (R) of Indiana may have delivered his strongest message yet that his state will drop the Common Core education standards.

During his State of the State address Tuesday, Pence said, “When it comes to setting standards for schools, I can assure you, Indiana’s will be uncommonly high. They will be written by Hoosiers, for Hoosiers and will be among the best in the nation.”

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley wants to scrap Common Core, too:

GREENVILLE, S.C. — Gov. Nikki Haley urged South Carolina lawmakers Thursday to scrap the national Common Core curriculum that is being phased in at schools throughout the state.

“We don’t ever want to educate South Carolina children like they educate California children,” Haley said. “We want to educate South Carolina children on South Carolina standards, not anyone else’s standards.”

“We are telling the legislature: Roll back Common Core,” the Republican governor added. “Let’s take it back to South Carolina standards.”

And Kentucky’s republican legislators want to as well:

Kentucky became the first state in 2010 to adopt the national education standards known as Common Core. Now, after more than 40 states have adopted the same standards, some Republican lawmakers will try to remove Common Core from Kentucky.

House Bill 215, filed by State Rep. Tom Kerr, R-Taylor Mill, would repeal Kentucky’s Common Core standards.

“Common Core takes the control of local schools out of the teachers and parents that are involved with the children and their education,” said Rep. Diane St. Onge, R-Lakeside Park, one of 10 Republican legislators to co-sponsor the bill.

Kentucky, classified as a red state because it went for Romney in 2012, is a bit different that the other three states. Cincinnati Enquirer reporter Scott Wartman explains:

The standards have support from Democrats but have seen mounting Republican opposition. Repealing Kentucky’s Common Core standards will face the high, if not insurmountable, hurdle of a Democratic-controlled House and a Democratic governor who has supported Common Core.

Governors Haley of South Carolina and Pence from Indiana have probably watched with interest the difficulties that Florida governor Rick Scott has had in getting Core through a legislature he controls. But Haley and Pence don’t have Jeb Bush looking over their shoulder either. Oklahoma has one of Bush’s Chiefs for Change in Janet Barresi who will push back.

But Bush has been strangely absent from the recent Common Core debates. He didn’t mention Core during a speech last week in Jacksonville. His last public mention of it appears to be this past October when he accused opponents in his own party of engaging in conspiracy theories.

Rick Hess, director of education-policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, went so far as to say in August that Core could be Bush’s Romneycare:

So what’s gone wrong? Bush made a crucial miscalculation: He failed to do anything that would signal to conservatives that he took seriously their concerns about federal overreach or potential Obama partisanship when it came to Common Core. This summer, when the House Republicans included a provision in their new version of No Child Left Behind that would have prohibited the federal government from meddling in state standards, Bush was nowhere to be seen. In contrast, Bush has often come across as Common Core’s emissary to the Right. He has pitched Common Core to the Right, but he has not publicly defended conservative concerns to his Democratic allies or incipient nationalizers. It would have been good politics and policy if he had publicly challenged the Obama team for politicizing and federalizing Common Core.

Perhaps it’s that sometime between his October speech and his speech last week, Bush decided he was running for president and he and his handlers decided that Core was a loser with both the republican base and tea party voters he needs to win primaries. At any rate, republican governors like Haley, Pence and Scott have found themselves under the bus in defending Core as part of the education reform package Bush sold to them and other star-struck republican pols in their state.



About Bob Sikes

A long time ago and a planet far, far away I was an athletic trainer for the New York Mets. I was blessed to be part of the now legendary 1986 World Series Championship. My late father told me that I'd one day be thankful I had that degree in teaching from Florida State University. He was right and I became twice blesses to become a teacher in the late 1990's. After dabbling with writing about the Mets and then politics, I settled on education.
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