Today’s Seacoast Sunday (aka, the Portsmouth Herald) editorializes on the Common Core today, mostly with its educate-our-readers hat on. But here are two key points (emphasis added):
It is time for students and parents to get involved in the conversation at the local school board level, because Common Core is not a curriculum but a set of standards defining student success at each grade level in math and English language arts. The curriculum and teaching methods used to achieve those standards will be determined locally.
There is a move afoot in the New Hampshire House to roll back or at least curtail Common Core’s implementation but we expect these efforts won’t garner much support. After all, Common Core is replacing the highly unpopular No Child Left Behind standards. The questionable NECAP test will be replaced with the Smarter Balance test that will require students to demonstrate what they know through writing and computation rather than simply filling in answer bubbles.
In our view, Common Core should not be a political issue. We urge those who support the new standards to listen respectfully to those who have concerns about them and we urge those who oppose the standards to do their best to present arguments based in fact rather than hypothetical worst-case scenarios.
And Foster’s Daily Democrat also ran a story today by Dan Tuohy headlined, “Controversy over the Common Core mostly politics.”
The controversy swirling around the Common Core has prompted lawmakers to draft bills designed to modify, delay or block it more than three years after the state adopted the standards.
So what happened? What created this firestorm, as New Hampshire is one of 46 states to adopt the Common Core?
One short answer is politics, as Education Commissioner Virginia Barry noted last week during a Concord forum, an event conservative opponents labeled one-sided.
And, lo and behold, today the Concord Monitor ran a great opinion piece by Robert Fried that describes the education debate that led to the Common Core and offers ideas on how students and parents can avoid politicizing the issue and, as the Herald urges, get involved.