Conservative Groups Oppose Mike Pence’s Education Reform Agenda

Photo credit: Steve Baker (CC-By-ND 2.0)

Photo credit: Steve Baker (CC-By-ND 2.0)

Yesterday over 30 conservative reform groups publicly released an agenda for education reform, which they are submitting to Indiana legislators. The coalition’s “Platform for Educational Empowerment” urges legislators to make the following issues a priority during the 2015 session: reducing regulations on voucher-accepting schools;  freedom in testing and choice of non-Common Core-aligned/rebranded standards; forgoing a renewal of Indiana’s federal No Child Left Behind waiver; greater protection of student data; empowering parents, as opposed to government-funded institutions, when it comes to the care of children too young for kindergarten; equalizing basic per-pupil student funding for school; and taking a stand against the College Board’s new and controversial AP U.S. History framework.

Heather Crossin, co-founder of Hoosiers Against Common Core, told Truth in American Education that they were prompted to release this platform because of repeated media reports about calls that Indiana Governor Mike Pence has made to expand Indiana’s voucher programs which the media has believed would curry him favor with grassroots conservatives.

“As organizations representing the base voting bloc of Indiana’s Republican supermajority, we thought it important to set the record straight.  We cannot support a voucher expansion, unless the legislature and Governor are willing to cut the Common Core strings that bind it.  Indiana’s voucher program was recently rated as being the second worst in the country when it comes to protecting private school autonomy.  Expanding this program, without addressing this fact, is unacceptable and further erodes the very concept of school choice,” Crossin stated.

Dave Read of The Central Coalition, which represents 20 central Indiana Tea Parties, said, “This is a comprehensive document that sets a path for obtaining academic excellence in our schools, by empowering and liberating those closest to the students – local districts, schools, teachers, and parents.  It is the antithesis of the failed policies of the last several decades, all of which have been geared toward centralizing government control over Indiana schools.  It makes the case for unshackling schools, rather than tightening the government vice-grip.”

Heather Crossin added in a released statement, “As conservatives and activists who have been at the forefront of the education debates in IN the past two years, the groups represented here reject recent media accounts citing the expansion of vouchers as a major priority for grassroots conservatives. School choice needs freedom to thrive; therefore our first priority is to free voucher schools from the stifling regulations which bind them.”

Erin Tuttle, also a co-founder of Hoosiers Against Common Core, stated, “Education policy should be driven by parents informed by academia and business, not lobbyists and government agencies informed by their own interests.”

“The rebrand of Common Core standards in Indiana shows the system is broken. We will continue to advocate for the liberation of schools from the Common Core-aligned system that still controls them from Washington, DC,” said Micah Clark, President of American Family Association of Indiana.

“We won’t produce better, brighter students by creating more government programs and expanding the role of government,” said Dan Thiele, a conservative activist from northern Indiana.

You can read the platform here or below:

Governors Race to the Drop (of Common Core)

I have to admit.  I didn’t coin that title; credit goes to Heather Crossin who coined it in an email.  We have had a couple of Governors make some statements about the Common Core as state legislatures go into session.

mike-penceRepublican Governor Mike Pence of Indiana in his state of the state address last week said: “Hoosiers have high expectations when it comes to Indiana schools. That’s why Indiana decided to take a time-out on national education standards,” 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.”

After the address Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz said “We always adopt our own standards. It just so happens that in 2010 the State Board of Education adopted the Common Core as its standards. We are reviewing those standards. I’m pretty confident there are going to be changes to those standards. And Indiana will be adopting a new set of standards.”

Heather Crossin (who again gets credit for the title) cautioned Hoosiers:

However, we must also add the cautionary words of “not so fast.”  Hoosiers want real change when it comes to the content of future standards – minor revisions and a simple name change won’t cut it.  On this point, we turn your attention to Breitbart’s coverage of Pence’s remarks, in which Common Core supporters Derek Redelman, of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, and State Board of Education member Tony Walker (D), both predict that the changes made will be minimal and a mere tweaking of the Common Core.  Of most concern is Walker’s statement that he thinks “all of the anchor standards have to be Common Core.”  Obviously, this will NOT be acceptable.

nikki_haleyNow shift to South Carolina.  Republican Governor Nikki Haley says we’re going to ditch the Common Core.

In a speech to the Greenville County Republican Women’s Club on Jan. 16, according to the Anderson Independent Mail, Haley, a Republican who’s up for re-election this year, said, "We are telling the legislature: Roll back common core. Let’s take it back to South Carolina standards." She added that if Senate Bill 300 (introduced last year for the state’s 2013-14 legislative session) reaches her desk, she "absolutely will sign it." In that bill, there’s no pause, no mandated review period—just a straightforward move to remove the standards from the state.

There have been different bills looked at by the South Carolina State Legislature, but none have made it out of the Senate education committee.  Haley is in a reelection year and she understands where her base is.  She has however been consistent in her opposition to the Common Core State Standards.  We just haven’t seen it amount to anything yet.

Back to the Midwest now Republican Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker faces the loss of his base if he doesn’t take a strong stand against the Common Core State Standards.

scott-walker-wisconsin-governorFrom the Wisconsin Daily Independent:

While Scott Walker has gained ground around the country for a possible presidential bid, there are increasingly loud rumblings from his Wisconsin base.  The source of the friction is the controversial Common Core State Standards.

The governor’s office has been inundated with calls from across Wisconsin for the past several days.  Callers are insisting that Walker make a plain statement in his upcoming State of the State address this week, rejecting the Common Core and laying out a clear plan for immediate cessation and reversal of the standards.  One reason for the mounting pressure on the governor is the scheduled deployment of Common Core-related Smarter Balanced assessments later this year, a process that has resulted in major blowback in states such as New York and Kentucky.

Walker has remained largely silent regarding the ongoing implementation of Common Core in his state.  The few vague statements he has made so far have been viewed as at least a passive embrace of the standards.  There is additional reason to suspect that the governor is pro-Common Core.  For example, the governor notably failed to provide support to a fellow Republican who last year attempted to unseat Tony Evers, the current Democratic secretary of Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction.  Evers had gained notoriety for making Wisconsin the first state in the nation to adopt Common Core and has essentially seen no pushback from Walker on the initiative.

With Governor Walker’s star currently rising on the national horizon, it’s not just his Wisconsin base paying attention to his position on Common Core.  Less than 48 hours from his State of the State, eyes across the nation are watching Walker to see whether or not he will join the vanguard of governors now repudiating Common Core in their states.

I’ll be watching from Iowa.

Which state will drop the Common Core first?

Notre Dame Common Core Conference Video

The American Principles Project (APP), the Heartland Institute and Pioneer Institute, co-hosted a one-day conference at Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana, Monday, September 9, 2013 to discuss the destructive implications of the Common Core Standards and the future of the education of America’s youth.

More than 200 people were in attendance at the sold out conference. Among the states represented were California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, and West Virginia; most of which have strong grassroot movements fighting against the Common Core.

Leading experts addressed the conference on the changing landscape of the American education system and the implications of the Common Core Standards. Concerned citizens, many of whom are parents, joined in the discussion by sharing their experiences and concerns.

Below is a playlist of all of the videos from the conference.  Videos include (in the order of the playlist):

  • ND Common Core Conference Highlights
  • Sean Fieler – The Purpose of Education
  • Dr. Gerard V. Bradley – Opening Comments on Common Core
  • Emmett McGroarty – Common Core Restricts States Rights
  • Dr. Patrick Deneen – Education and America’s Founding Principles
  • Dr. Williamson Evers – Federal Role in Education
  • Jamie Gass – Common Core and School Choice
  • Jane Robbins – Common Core and Data Collection
  • Joy Pullmann – Federal Intrusion in the Classroom
  • Dr. James Milgram – Common Core Effect on Higher Education
  • Dr. James Milgram – Common Core Effect on Math Education
  • Dr. Megan Koschnick – Common Core is Developmentally Inappropriate
  • Dr. Sandra Stotsky – the Invalid Process of Common Core Development
  • Dr. Sandra Stotsky – Common Core English Language Arts Standards
  • Dr. Terrance Moore – Common Core and the Destruction of Literature
  • Ze’ev Wurman – Inadequate Research Base of Common Core
  • Heather Crossin – Parent Reaction to Common Core
  • Erin Tuttle – Parent Reaction to Common Core
  • William Estrada – Common Core and Private/Homeschools
  • Dr. Andrew Kern – Why Literature is Essential in Education
  • Dr. Keith Oatley – the Importance of Reading

HT: FightCommonCore.com

Common Core Conference at the University of Notre Dame

notre-dame-golden-domeFrom FightCommonCore.com, this will be a great conference to be held next month at Notre Dame University in Indiana.

The Changing Role of Education in America: Consequences of the Common Core

University of Notre Dame
September 9, 2013

You can register online here.

Please join us for a one-day conference at the Notre Dame Conference Center in South Bend, Indiana, as leading experts from across the country discuss the changing landscape of the American education system and the implications of the new Common Core Standards.

Sponsored by: American Principles Project, Heartland Institute, Pioneer Institute

Conference Program:

9:00 -9:20 Welcome and Opening Remarks
Professor Gerard V. Bradley, Notre Dame Law School

9:20-10:00 History of Education in America
Dr. Williamson M. Evers, Hoover Institute at Stanford University

Purpose of Education in American Society
Professor Patrick Deneen, University of Notre Dame

10:10-10:30 Coffee Break

10:45-11:45 Panel on Federalism, Privacy and Common Core
Joy Pullman, Heartland Institute; Emmett McGroarty, J.D., APP; Jane Robbins, J.D., APP; Dr. Williamson M. Evers, Hoover Institute at Stanford University

11:45-12:15 Common Core Development
Prof. James Milgram, Stanford University; Prof. Sandra Stotsky, University of Arkansas; Dr. Megan Koschnick

12:15-1:30 Lunch
Address by Andrew Kern, President of CiRCE Institute

1:30-2:45 Mathematics
Prof. James Milgram, University of Stanford; Ze’ev Wurman, Hoover Institute; Heather Crossin, Parent

2:45-3:00 Coffee Break

3:00-4:15 English Language Arts
Prof. Sandra Stotsky, University of Arkansas; Prof. Terrence Moore, Hillsdale College; Professor Patrick Deneen, Notre Dame University; Erin Tuttle, Parent

4:15-5:15 Religious Schools, Private Schools, Home School Families
William Estrada, JD, Home School Legal Defense Association; Jamie Gass, Pioneer Institute; Prof. Terrence Moore, Hillsdale College;
5:15-5:30 Closing Remarks

The Changing Role of Education in America: Consequences of the Common Core

Federalism vs. Centralization of Educational Standards and Testing: Panelists will discuss the role of the federal government versus that of the state and local community in educating citizens. They will explore the shifting purpose of the education system to meet the needs of the workforce at the expense of the needs of the citizen and society.

State-Led Effort vs. Foundations and Special-Interest Groups: Panelists involved in the
development of the Common Core Standards will discuss the credentials of those who created the Standards, the lack of state involvement, and the influence of private foundations and special-interest groups.

International Benchmarking and American Competitiveness: Panelists will analyze the lack of international benchmarking of the Standards, and explain why it will place American students years behind their international counterparts in mathematics and English and damage economic competitiveness.

You can register online here.

Photo credit: Dan Dzurisin via Flickr (CC-By-NC-ND 2.0)

Common Core Generates Catholic Concerns

St. Joseph's Catholic Church and School - Wapakoneta, OHCharlotte Hays of the National Catholic Register had a piece up on how the Common Core State Standards are becoming the cause of concern within Catholic circles.

She writes:

Catholic schools and dioceses across the country will have to decide whether to adopt the CCSS. Although the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA) isn’t endorsing the controversial Common Core State Standards, the NCEA is helping Catholic schools across the nation prepare for CCSS implementation.

“What we have done at NCEA is develop what we call the Common Core Catholic Identity Initiative,” said Presentation Sister Dale McDonald, who holds a doctorate in educational administration and serves as director of public policy and educational research at the NCEA.

The NCEA is scheduled to host a Common Core Catholic Identity Initiative Conference for Catholic educators from around the country June 30-July 2 in Nashville, Tenn. Sister Dale said that Catholic educators will discuss, for example, how to introduce Catholic ideas into what is being studied.

The NCEA website characterizes the standards as a “call for excellence in academic programs,” adding that “one way” many schools are “ensuring excellence, appropriate challenge and relevance in their curriculum is by utilizing the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).”

In many states, Catholic schools that get money from vouchers already are required to participate in standardized state tests to continue in a voucher program. If those states have adopted the Common Core State Standards, those standards will become the basis for state tests, replacing previous tests that were based on statewide standards. 

Erin Tuttle & Heather Crossin who started the push to fight the Common Core in Indiana did so out of concern about what the Common Core was doing to their Catholic school.

But it was the quality of her son’s math homework that led one Catholic mother to become involved in a fight to block CCSS in her state.

When Erin Tuttle, an Indiana mother, whose son was enrolled in a Catholic elementary school, looked at her son’s third-grade math homework in 2011, she was immediately concerned.

“What struck me was the difference between what my daughter had done three years ago in third-grade math and what he was doing,” she said. “That set off alarms.”

Tuttle was also concerned about the reading material. Instead of poetry or fiction appropriate for a third-grader, her son was coming home with children’s versions of popular magazines.

Tuttle and a like-minded friend, Heather Crossin, who had also been concerned about what her children were — or weren’t — learning, organized thr group Hoosiers Against Common Core, which proposed legislation blocking implementation of CCSS without more review. Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signed the bill into law on May 11.

“Thank heavens Heather and I have thick skins, because this wasn’t fun,” Tuttle said, noting considerable pushback against their efforts from CCSS supporters. “We were outmanned, had no money and no lobbyist — and yet we came out ahead.”…

….“I think our concerns are that the Common Core imposes top-down, centrally controlled, one-size-fits-all standards,” Tuttle said.

“It changed education from what we traditionally think of as education,” said Tuttle, who believes that adoption of the CCSS will deal a death blow to the classical education many Catholic parents regard as the defining characteristic of Catholic education. She called CCSS “a radical shift” in American — and Catholic — education.

Be sure to read the whole article.

Indiana Governor Mike Pence Signs Common Core Pause Legislation

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Today Indiana Governor Mike Pence signed the Common Core pause legislation that requires the Indiana State Board of Education to hold three public hearings on the Common Core State Standards and have a fiscal impact study completed by 2014.

“I have long believed that education is a state and local function and we must always work to ensure that our students are being taught to the highest academic standards and that our curriculum is developed by Hoosiers, for Hoosiers,” Pence said in a released statement. “The legislation I sign today hits the pause button on Common Core so Hoosiers can thoroughly evaluate which standards will best serve the interests of our kids.’’

State Senator Scott Schneider (R-Indianapolis) who was the chief sponsor of the bill said, “Today Indiana takes a crucial step in deciding the future of our participation in Common Core. There will be heavy review and scrutiny of Common Core over the next six months. It is my hope we can come out of these study committee meetings with a clear understanding of the level of federal involvement in education policy in Indiana, and a dedication to setting the best standards in the country.”

Heather Crossin, co-founder of Hoosiers Against Common Core, responded to today’s news,”We believe this is a historic day, not just because it marks what we hope will be the beginning of the end for Common Core in Indiana, but because it proves that our American system of government still works. Against all odds, with no funding, the will of the People prevailed. It prevailed against hundreds of of dollars of paid advertising, a slew of paid lobbyists, and numerous powerful organizations like the Chamber of Commerce.”

“Unlike those with corporate interests at stake, our only stake in this game is our children’s education and ultimately their futures. Opponents of HB1427 fought vigorously all to prevent Common Core from being reviewed in the light of day. There seems to be only one reason for this – the Common Core emperor wears no clothes. The slogans and rhetoric that were used to sell the Common Core simply don’t hold up under close scrutiny,” Crossin added. “We are hopeful that Governor Pence, with his upcoming appointments to the State Board of Education, will decide to lead Indiana into a new direction where local control of education will be restored.”

Emmett McGroarty with American Principles in Action said, “With this legislation the people of Indiana have stepped forward to reclaim their sacred right to direct the education and upbringing of their children. This is a new breath of liberty for America.”

Erin Tuttle, co-founder of Hoosiers Against Common Core, stated, “This bill is a victory for the will of the people of Indiana. We were outspent and outmanned, but the will of the People prevailed which proves the system can work. Hoosiers still have a home at the Indiana Statehouse where their opinions are respected.”

Photo provided by Erin Tuttle.

Update: I had to update this post because I learned the bill had been amended to say three public hearings instead of a public hearing in each of Indiana’s congressional districts.  It was said this was done for fiscal purposes, but I believe it limits who may be able to attend these public hearings.

Photos: Ohio is Jazzed About #StopCommonCore

Ohio had some informational meetings about the Common Core at three different locations throughout the state.  Ohioans Against Common Core has an update here.  Between 850-1000 attended.  The photos below are from Jamie Gass of the Pioneer Institute who was one of the speakers.

The speakers for these events were:

Cincinnati – held April 12th held at the Anderson Twp. Center.  Hosted by Anderson.

cincinnati 1

cincinnati 2

ColumbusDebate style format. Panelists include supporters and opponents. Held on Saturday, April 13th at Berlin Presbyterian Church in Lewis Center, OH.  Hosted by OSBLC.

Speakers:

  • Emmett McGroarty – American Principles Project – Executive Director, Preserve Innocence Project
  • Joy Pullmann – Heartland Institute – Research Fellow, Education; Managing Editor, School Reform News
  • Jamie Gass – Pioneer Institute for Public Policy – Director, Center for School Reform
  • Heather Crossin – Hoosiers Against Common Core – Co-founder, education policy activist
  • Emmy L. Partin – Thomas B. Fordham Institute – Director of Ohio Policy & Research
  • C. Todd Jones – Current member State Board of Education, President of Associations of Independent Colleges

(I’ve been told there is a video of this debate.  We’ll post it when it becomes available).

Columbus 1

Columbus 2

Cleveland (West) Saturday – April 13th this was hosted by Concerned Parents & Teachers of Northern Ohio.  Held at Christ the King Church in North Olmsted, OH.

Speakers were the same as Cincinnati.

cleveland 1

cleveland 2

If you attended one of these meetings we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Also FYI – here’s an immediate action item for those Ohioans who attended.

Update: Testimony from Jamie Gass:

It becomes clearer and clearer why the CCSSI advocates don’t debate in public – their arguments would get demolished. As with Tony Bennett at ALEC, they just don’t have very good answers beyond some basic talking points. Frankly, I doubt Bennett will ever forget how Bill took him down in AZ.

Oftentimes, the CCSSIers seem to outline the symptoms of America’s troubles in K-12 education, but can’t explain how or why the feds/DC are positioned or able to remedy the problem via national standards/tests. As I responded to the Fordham person  during the debate in Columbus: “You folks have been out in OH for 20 years and haven’t improved either the state standards or the NAEP scores. Given your weak record in OH –why should we believe you can lead a nationalizing effort?” Reply – nothing.

The OH crowds were large – 200 to 300+ in each city — and these people seemed as angry and motivated vs. Common Core as any state we’ve been in. In fact, these were scheduled to be two hour events—nearly 3/4 of the people stayed for three hours in each city.

Mike Pence Needs to Lead Common Core Opposition, Not Sit on the Sidelines

Governor Pence greeting those who oppose SB 193Hoosiers Against Common Core founders, Heather Crossin and Erin Tuttle, were joined Thursday by 75 representatives from 54 independent organizations from across the state of Indiana. They delivered a letter to Governor Mike Pence’s office that had been signed by over 900 Hoosiers during the prior five days.  The letter called on Governor Mike Pence to support SB 193 and for him to provide leadership in opposing the Common Core.

Indiana Senate Bill 193 would require public hearings and a cost analysis to be completed before the Common Core is put into place in all grades.  Currently the standards have only been implemented in Kindergarten and First Grade.

Heather Crossin made the following remarks on Thursday prior to delivering the letter:

“We are coming together in a unified way today to express the numerous concerns Hoosier parents, teachers, and taxpayers continue to have about Indiana’s adoption of the Common Core.

“As you know, SB193, which calls for a public review of Indiana’s adoption Common Core and a cost analysis of implementation, passed the Indiana Senate 38-11. At this time, the prospects of SB193 obtaining a hearing in the House remain uncertain. However, one thing is certain – regardless of what happens to the legislation, much will depend upon the leadership of Governor Pence.

“It is for this reason that we are releasing a letter, which has been given to him, on behalf of 55 independent organizations. It outlines our concerns and respectfully requests that Governor Pence ‘provide the bold leadership needed to return control of Indiana schools back to the state and to parents and teachers, where it belongs.’

“It’s no secret that Governor Pence has long been a believer that education is a state and local function. In fact, just a couple of weeks before the election, when asked by the Indianapolis Star how he would prioritize social issues, Governor Pence responded: “I hope Hoosiers look at my record and see I have been a consistent independent conservative throughout my years in Congress. My career actually began with battles against leaders of my own party, largely on government spending. I opposed ‘No Child Left Behind.’ I was one of a small number of Republicans to do that because I think education is a state and local function.”

“That said, the message we are conveying to the Governor is that we share his philosophy and his principles of fiscal responsibility and local governance. The breadth of Common Core opposition in Indiana demonstrates our citizens’ concern over the loss of our autonomy over education. We trust that Governor Pence will put his
principles into action and help us protect that autonomy. When we decided to write this letter together, we envisioned that it would be submitted on behalf of the many organizations opposed to the Common Core.

“However, once word got out, individuals began clamoring to sign as well. So last Friday, we made it available for individuals to submit their names. In just five short days, over 860 individuals signed on to the letter. We will continue to collect and submit additional names as they roll in.

“In conclusion, I’d like to add that this letter in no way represents all of the groups who have expressed opposition to the Common Core. Many others, such the Indiana Policy Review, Americans for Prosperity, Advance America, Campaign for Liberty, the Indiana Association of Home Educators, the Homeschool Legal Defense Association and a number of teacher networks, are continuing to call in their own ways for a rejection of
Common Core.”

After reading the letter, Erin Tuttle concluded with the following:

“This legislation represents a struggle between the voice of the people, representing states’ rights which ultimately protect that close relationship that needs to exist – that has to exist- between a child’s family and those in charge of his education and therefore his future, against the powers of corporations and federal agencies which at any opportunity seize and assume those duties and powers to which they have no constitutional right!

“The people of Indiana need to know that their will-the will of the people- will not be drowned out by the influence and the money that our opponents have used against SB193. The kind of power that can buy you $100,000 worth of commercials used to push a corporate agenda on an unwilling public.

We are confident that Indiana has selected the right Governor, Mike Pence, who will hear and honor the voices of his constituents- his wisdom allows him to see that at the end of the day, when the common core agenda fails, the publishing companies, the testing companies, the professional development companies they can walk away, their pockets lined with our tax payers dollars. But our children are forever impacted by the educational policies decided today in this house, the people’s house.”

Governor Pence did come out to greet the group, but his office thus far has not provided a formal statement. 

Why are Tax-Funded Common Core Meetings Closed to the Public?

Joy Pullman, research fellow at The Heartland Institute and the managing editor of School Reform News, reports that the meetings of Council of Chief State School Officers to write and discuss the Common Core State Standards are closed to the public.

Meetings between members of the Council of Chief State School Officers to write and discuss these standards and corresponding tests are closed to the public, though taxpayers pay for state officials to attend these meetings and to be CCSSO members.

“[T]he Council of Chief State School Officers holds over one hundred meetings per year,” its meeting webpage states. “CCSSO meetings are closed to the public and attendance is by invitation only unless otherwise denoted” (emphasis original).

CCSSO and the National Governor’s Association are two nonprofits that coordinated state involvement and adoption of the Core. It outlines what states will expect K-12 children to know in math and English/language arts in each grade. Nearly all states adopted them in 2010 within five months of their release, and plan to fully implement them, along with matching tests currently in development, by 2014-2015.

When meetings such as these have a tremendous impact on education policy, especially when they are funded with taxpayer money (from state dues and direct funding from the U.S. Department of Education), then the public has the right to attend if they so choose.

Heather Crossin, a mom and a tea party activist, Common Core critic and co-founder of Hoosiers Against Common Core, inquired about attending, but was told no.

Indiana resident Heather Crossin, whose children attend schools implementing the Core, attempted to attend an October 2012 CCSSO meeting in her Indianapolis hometown. Crossin called Michele Parks, a CCSSO meeting planner, to see if she could attend. No, Parks said. Crossin asked to see a list of people on the Social Studies standards writing team: “I was told that was not available for public release,” Crossin said.

Ten weeks entailing dozens of emails and phone calls to at least six CCSSO spokesmen and personnel for access to the Indianapolis meeting or any others at last yielded an email to School Reform News from spokeswoman Kate Dando in December: “our meetings/sessions at our meetings are open to press really on a case by case basis,” she wrote.

Some reporters have attended some CCSSO meetings, usually on background, she said, which means they cannot directly quote what they hear. Why?

Why? Exactly… what do they have to hide?

Welcome Hoosiers Against Common Core

hacc-fbI’d like to welcome a new group headed up by familiar friends.  Please be sure to check out Heather Crossin and Erin Tuttle’s new venture Hoosiers Against Common Core.  Be sure to follow them on Twitter and like them on Facebook.  Spread the word – especially if you live in Indiana.