Yesterday and today, in six separate roll call votes, the New Hampshire House refused to pass a single anti-Common Core bill on to the Senate. All those bills were voted either Inexpedient to Legislate or Interim Study.
All but a few Democrats were solidly behind the Common Core and, on the keystone votes, many Republicans were as well. On HB 1239, the bill to obstruct adoption of standards, 20 Republicans joined in the 182-124 ITL vote. And on HB 1508, the one sentence bill to end the Common Core in New Hampshire, 17 Republicans joined all but a few Democrats in a 201-138 ITL vote. And yesterday, the vote on HB 1397 to set up a study committee to investigate NHDOE, the vote was 228-77. I wasn’t a roll call but that had to include a large number of Republicans.
The message, as I read it, was: “We in New Hampshire are committed to high education standards for our students and support the years of work NHDOE, our school districts, our unions and our teachers have done on the Common Core standards and the Smarter Balanced test. It’s time to move on from these debates and work on the real day-to-day issues facing New Hampshire public education.”
Political opponents of the Common Core will, of course, not accept this message. We will continue to hear, especially, that there are problems with the Smarter Balanced or any other assessment. But there is no further need for that political debate. Our teachers and students will provide the feedback we need and our Department of Education will respond.