From New Orleans Times-Picayune reporter Julia O’Donoghue:
Gov. Bobby Jindal on Friday vetoed a bill that many had seen as an endorsement of the Common Core academic standards. The governor has recently said he wants to scrap the educational benchmarks and its associated testing in Louisiana, though Common Core advocates doubt he has the authority to do so, now that the Legislature has declined to help.
“The bill sacrifices the important education reforms supported by this Legislature in 2010 and 2012 in order to implement a set of national standards and tests that take away local control and standardize our education system,” Jindal wrote in his explanation of vetoing House Bill 953.
Common Core lays out what students are supposed to learn each year in mathematics and English. Louisiana and most other states adopted the standards a few years ago, but a few states are backing off amid a recent conservative backlash.
The legislation was seen as a compromise on Common Core and an effort make sure Louisiana kept the educational benchmarks overall. Its sponsor, Rep. Walt Leger, D-New Orleans, is a Common Core supporter.
Unlike Florida governor Rick Scott, it’s clear that Jindal isn’t trying to pull the wool over the eyes of people in his state with a “tweak” of Common Core. Scott recently double-downed on his ruse by saying “Common Core is out.” Jeff Solochek explains in the Tampa Bay Times:
Florida Gov. Rick Scott, in an interview with the conservative Report Card blog, pronounced the controversial Common Core State Standards dead in the Sunshine State.
He has in the past been reluctant to take a stance on the standards, which he at one point supported.
“I like to be positive and say what I am for, not what I am against,” he told Report Card. “The Chamber of Commerce came out for Common Core, so rather than specifically renounce it, I preferred to say that The Florida State Standard is now 100% a Florida educational standard, but the fact is, Common Core is out.”
While Scott has said that Florida’s standards are its own, Common Core foes often have called him out on this one. They have accurately noted that the Florida Standards are actually theCommon Core with the addition of 98 items, mostly related to cursive handwriting and calculus instruction. Supporters of the Common Core did not protest the revisions, saying they were minor and noting the State Board of Education removed nothing.
Scott offered a different version of events to Report Card. He said, “The Florida Standard is derived from the Next Generation Sunshine State Standard, which was derived from earlier versions of the Sunshine State Standards. These standards pre-dated Common Core and a truly Florida’s own standards.”
Except for this: The Florida Board of Education adopted the Common Core in 2010, replacing the Next Generation standards in English/language arts and math. When it rebranded everything as Florida Standards, it included the revised Common Core and the state standards in other subject areas.
Governor Bobby Jindal is apparently trying to muster up the courage to remove Louisiana from the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and associated Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) assessments that he signed Louisiana on for in the first place.
Of course, Jindal has changed his position due to his national political ambitions.
Jindal is under pressure from Louisiana businesses to Keep the Core.
He is also at odds with Louisiana State Board of Education (BESE) President Chas Roemer and Jindal’s own appointee for state superintendent, John White.
Common Core has brought out the very worst in politicians. Whether or not Jindal’s epiphany is based on his presidential aspirations, like all republican governors who drank Jeb Bush’s Common Core Kool-Aid, he’s earned the cynicism. As for Scott, this bit of deceit is especially galling. You just can’t utter such easily fact-checked falsities on education policy and not suffer consequences.