Common Core a Jeb Bush Federal Power Grab? Of Course It Is

The Northwest Florida Daily News which serves a three-county republican stronghold takes a sober look at Common Core Standards and the role that former Florida governor Jeb Bush has played. After dryly pointing out “Common Core isn’t really going away in Florida, just the name, ” the editors offer this:

…the real question is not whether this is a federal power grab. Of course it is. The real question is whether it will improve schooling.

Jeb Bush thinks it will. When he was Florida’s governor, Bush championed education reform, generally with success. He pushed for standardized tests, for school vouchers and for grading schools on student performance. He still wields influence and is often mentioned as a GOP presidential prospect.

Mr. Bush strongly supports Common Core. “This is a real-world, grown-up approach to a real crisis that we have,” he said March 19, adding that lawmakers must “stay the course on higher standards and higher expectations.”

He evidently believes that Florida, by changing Common Core’s name but mostly keeping the standards, is staying the course. “Unlike other states that have gotten nervous because there’s a lot of heat … I’m kind of proud of what Florida has done,” he said.

A “real crisis,” eh, Jeb ?

Jeb Bush would have a nation believe that he has nothing to do with any bad news, such as the recent revelation that Florida high school seniors have not been served after 12 years in the test-dominated state schools dominated he imposed.

Florida high school seniors continue to struggle in math and reading, according to the latest report from the National Assessment of Education Progress, or NAEP.

NAEP is often referred to as the nation’s report card and the latest report shows high schoolers across the nation are doing no better today than they did four years ago. The same goes for Florida, which was one of 13 states where 12th grade students took NAEP’s reading and math tests. It’s a trend experts say is problematic…….

Bush’s “real crisis” has occurred on his watch and with his policies in place. He’s insisting that a nation trust him again with Common Core Standards which aren’t evidenced based and different standardized tests that have already shown to be problematic.

In January, Scathing Purple Musings predicted that it would be mainstream republican – not the Tea Party – which would defeat Common Core. Mainstream republicans are in the wing dominated by conservative principles who easily see the Common Core cocktail as toxic.  Bush, and Florida republicans are from the crony capitalist wing of the party, one which often allies with the crony capitalist wing of the Democratic Party. Both are ignoring their political bases in siding with big money corporate interests.

As for Bush, he’s  rapidly finding himself on an island in the upcoming republican presidential primary. Too many potential candidates have moved away from Core like Bobby Jindal, Mike Pence, Mike Huckabee and Rick Perry. Conservative commentator George Will said this week that a supporter of Common Core cannot win the republican nomination in 2016. A dispatch of Bush in the 2016 primaries will doom Common Core.



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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