Recently (or soon), the Delaware Chamber of Commerce has (or will) come out with a op-ed piece in support of Common Core. Although I love those guys and enjoy the food immensely when at their banquets, their defense of Common Core is nothing stronger than wishful thinking. They are not on top of their facts…

Here is what they say… and this will be the factual rebuttal to their statements.

“Common Core State Standards are, quite simply, a prioritized, clearly stated list of skills a student must master in each grade level in order to be on track to succeed in college-level work.”

No.  They aren’t just that.   Common Core is a curriculum!  One that is secret and copyrighted to preserve that secrecy.  What we have been given to see of that curriculum is appalling!  Common Core is a confusion of jumble, that is sent in packets to teachers, who open the packets, and teach the convoluted material..  The material is 3 grades above the grade level of the grade being taught, and the test on which all is accountable,  is impossible for adults to understand.  It is far worse for the kids taking it. and has been likened to mental child abuse.   No endorsement of Common Core should EVER, EVER, EVER be made without first taking the tests yourselves….  How about a surprise quiz at your next banquet?  

These standards are internationally benchmarked.

Mark Murphy himself denied that when called before Delaware’s State Senators just last week.  So has Arne Duncun.  So has David Coleman, the originator of those standards.  All emphatically acknowledge these standards are benchmarked to 1550 on the American SAT. 

Adoption of Common Core State Standards, which business leaders see as common sense, is one of the most successful education reforms for higher standards of the past decade. 

There is this place, you know, called New York… that rolled out the tests on Common Core State standards… Their state Commissar of education had to cancel all his public meetings the outcry was so bad.  In fact, the new mayor of the City, is replacing the city’s Commissar, pretty much over the complete abysmal failure of Common Core.  Could I politely suggest that if perhaps  members of the Chamber of Commerce would read newspapers, they might be more informed?

Change within public institutions is always difficult, and the execution of the new standards with fidelity and speed will need the support of business and community leaders, legislators, educators, and parents.

Especially when it is wrong. and hurts kids, one must double down all the harder and force it past the resistance.

As of 2010, American students ranked 17th in science and 25th in math, beaten out by students in countries like China, Poland, and Canada.

(Cough, Cough) You forgot to mention that all types of Americans were tested, and in some nations, particularly China, only those in their tip-top schools took the test.  Sort of like comparing students on Pine Street to students with both parents have doctorates from MIT… This is extremely well documented, btw.  Don’t you guys ever read?

And for 40 years, eighth grade reading scores have improved only negligibly.

Not according to America’s report card… According to the NYEP, America’s Report Card, scores have steadily increased since the 1980’s… In fact, todays children know more than you ever did (at their age). Are you saying you were stupid and couldn’t do well with what education you got?  If you dismiss today’s children, that is exactly what you are saying.  Don’t you guys ever look things up?

And while young adults around the world are quickly surpassing their parents’ education, America’s young people as a whole have merely matched the attainment levels of the previous generation by their mid-thirties.

Duh!  Obviously!  Take China.  No one went to school when today’s children’s parents were growing up.. It doesn’t take much to surpass that very low bar.  Most American went to college.  It takes a lot to pass that high bar.  And as mentioned above, students today are smarter than their parents ….  If their education was not bad for their parents (no jobs, poverty, starvation) it cannot be bad for today’s students who are better educated than were their parents..

Last year, three out of every four graduating high school students weren’t adequately prepared for college.

In 1970, 55% of male graduates went on to post secondary.  Today, it is up to 73%.  That increase doesn’t come from the A students.  It doesn’t come from the B students.  It comes from the C students and lower… So of course, more students are going to college below the level arbitrarily set to achieve a B-…  What should be celebrated is that as a society, we are sending a full 18% more high school graduates to post secondary education, than we did in the 1970’s.  One couldn’t have done that with a failing educational system.

The number of undergraduates placed in remediation is shocking: half of all undergraduates and 70% of community college students take at least one remedial course.

In order to provide opportunity to all, most state funded institutions are required to take all who apply despite their abilities.  With those guidelines,  half of the undergraduates is not a bad number.  and since community colleges would generally take the C students who are below the high school minimum B- level, of course 70% are remedial.   The good news again is that we are pushing a higher percentage of our children towards secondary education.  That is a good thing,  despite that it would pull down the overall numbers… 

Of the community college students who enroll in remediation, only a quarter will graduate within eight years, often because they never advance to credit-bearing prerequisite courses.

By a slight of language, fully depending upon their interpretation of the word “often” they neglect all other causes.   Number one:  finances; Number 2:  Employment demands; Number 3; start a family; Number 4: Scheduling: Universities make it difficult to get required classes. Though some may not be inclined to apply academic rigo,  the amount is unknown.

Most state educational standards did not portray an honest picture of students’ preparedness for college and careers. Standards were a mile wide and an inch deep, with teachers left to determine what should be prioritized. A high school diploma has been an empty promise for success as far too many students received good grades and were told they were on track, only to fail in college-level work. 

If that were the case, … (cough, cough) there was this thing… it’s called the SAT.  And students wishing to go to academic colleges had to take it and get a score… If the above statement was true, they couldn’t get in.   Therefore the above is a false statement.

Every mathematics society president endorsed Common Core, calling it an “auspicious advance in mathematics education.

Now you’ve stepped up to lying.  The three mathematicians who were present at the development  of Common Core’s curriculum, have all said that there is no way they can endorse the gobblygook that came out despite their vociferous objections out of those sessions…   The other endorsements mentioned, were all made, before Common Core was developed, so the timeline itself, makes such a statement false.  Three  Pinocchio’s on that one.  Again, one shouldn’t endorse Common Core unless one has themselves, actually taken a test….

Common Core provides states with a road map to reach the next level of student learning.

No. No it doesn’t.  Last year’s data within Delaware’s Department of Education will show that last years low statewide DSTP scores were brought down by the Common Core classes… The non Common Core scores rose;  the Common Core classes were embarrassing.  Many classes went backwards over the course of the year.  Testing evidence shows Common Core dumbs down our student’s abilities.

The English language arts/literacy standards challenge students to read like a detective and write like an investigative reporter across academic disciplines. Not only do the standards ask students to focus on reading, writing, and speaking using evidence from text, they require regular practice with complex text and academic language. This includes a greater emphasis on building knowledge and communication skills through a focus on nonfiction works, similar to those they will need to read and understand in the workplace one day. Raising the bar for reading and writing skills across subjects such as history and science better prepares students for future work or study after high school.

After one year of trial in Delaware, the evidence is to the contrary.  Focusing on text diminishes a student’s performance.  Common Core Curriculum is stressed at how language is structured, instead of what it says.  If your boss on your job site, said,  “Hey! Bring that here”  to a student taught only Common Core, here then is how that employee must process that boss’s command.  “Hey”.. a verbal interjection.  designed to announce, to get ones attention.  Someone must want my attention (employee looks around)…  “Bring” that is a verb.  To bring means to carry an object with you.  Verb is to bring, but what is the subject?  There is no subject.  Is that intentional or accidental.  Perhaps it is personal… Then an unmentioned subject must be present.  That would be “me”… the hidden, understood pronoun or since he is saying it, in the sentence it would mean “you”… So far, he might be saying:  you bring… yeah, that sound right… Ok you bring…..  that… What is that. That is a pronoun so it could be anything…  I am holding a 2 X 10.  Perhaps he means the I (you) should bring that 2 x 10, but where?  He said here.  Here is a location, a place,  in this case an adverb referring to a place of location close to the speaker. So putting it altogether, my boss is telling me to bring this 2 X 10 over to him….   Pre- Common Core days, the thought process would be, “ok boss” because that was how we were wired.  Meanwhile the boss is thinking; I don’t know about that kid… Takes him two minutes to process everything I said…  Common Core is fun for adults who have no accountability for its results.  It is like a parlor game but backwards… It does not move society forward quickly.  What does more society forward quickly is memorizing facts and using them.  This process involved a 5 word sentence.  Now imagine a paragraph; next imagine a book….  Essentially Common Core language focuses too much detail on tiny details that are too unimportant for real life.…..

The math standards focus on making math make sense. The study of mathematics is not about memorizing a disconnected list of tricks. Students must develop reasoning skills with principles. To accomplish this, the standards create areas of strong focus in each grade, which are built upon in subsequent years in coherent sequence. Greater mastery of a smaller set of prerequisites enables students to develop their knowledge and reason to solve substantial problems, instead of having a shallow exposure to a vast number of topics. The rigor of the standards demands not only conceptual understanding, procedural skill, and fluency, but an equal focus on the application of mathematical knowledge to prepare students for problem solving outside the classroom…..

This is so wrong.  It is sad, really. that our children have to suffer this…   OK, reader, what is 3 X 8?  If you said 24… you’d be marked wrong a Common Core test.  It is not concerned with what the answer is… It is concerned with how you got the answer…  The correct answer on that test is to draw 3 circles and put 8 dots in each…  I’m serious.  If you put 24,  you are graded as wrong. So the child is trained to draw 3 circles, and then count the pieces in sequential order… 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,117,18,19,20,21,22,23,24… the answer is 24… Most students at age 8 tend to miss one or two of their tiny dots, and answers range from 22-26…   The answer on the test allows for this… if the students get in the range of 22-26 they get credit for the question… For you see, in Common Core, it doesn’t matter what the real answer is… What you are being tested on is that you know that the numerical equation 3 X 8 is the same thing as 3 circles with 8 things inside…   So as a boss you are counting inventory and your employee is writing down what you say, and you  have 3 rows of 8, so you say I’ve got 3 rows of 8 each… When you go to total, you look down and see 3 circles with 8 little dots in them…  Good luck with Common Core then, Mr. Chamber of Commerce Dude….  Common Core is an ill thought attempt to cultivate theoretical  mathematicians without given them skills in mathematics… The entire curriculum is flawed…  Now… imagine drawing the circles and dots required for this equation… (x + 3) (x – 8)….

It is important to keep in mind that the development of Common Core was state led. 

This has been completely debunked.  Do you guys ever read at all?   The Federal Government is by law, not allowed to interfere with a state’s curriculum.  So they delegated it.  They formed a private committee to derive the standards.  They named that private committee the Governor’s Commission so people would be misled into thinking Governors actually came up with the standards.  Governors don’t have time for that crap. The standards were developed by corporate think tanks, all receiving Dept. of Educational funds.  Achieve, AIR, and the College Board to name 3.  The Federal Government contract with each state emphasizes that all the standards must be followed or forfeiture of funds back to the DOE must occur.  A state which accepts the money has no choice but follow the Federal guidelines.  Furthermore,  a state has leeway in changing only 15% of the curriculum, that is, if the Federal DOE approves.  The other 85% is mandated by the Federal Giovernment…  This has been widely cited and should be as well known as the Affordable Care Act….

There is no additional or invasive data collection

Again, another blatant lie.  Asking the political affiliation of a student’s parents is invasive.

States and school districts maintain local control, including the right to develop and choose curricula..

Ummm.  Hello John. Hello Elizabeth.  Do you want to tell these guys what happened to you and the Fed’s?   Seriously Chamber of Commerce Dudes,  don’t you read ever the News Journal?  How can you contradict reality like that?

Because Common Core will challenge many schools to perform at a higher level, test scores this year—and likely for the next few years—will show a drop in math and reading proficiency. In New York, assessment results were released showing significantly lower proficiency levels than previous years. In response to this sobering news, the state education commissioner emphasized that the scores are not a critique of past efforts, nor do they reflect a decrease in performance.

So, you DO know about New York… Ahhh selective memory, ehhh?    But you failed to mention that they still tried to fire some teachers over the scores on this test, but public outcry caused them to back down…  Furthermore  you failed to mention that these low scores were predicted months in advance.  For unlike a regular test, these are graded on a curve.  If a state complains the curve is too low and embarrassing for its governor, the curve can be dropped so more pass, as happened in Florida.  In New York, the curve was set before the tests were taken to make 30 pass and 70% fail.  The score was politically driven because it is based on a percentage.  it was done to make a point. The low score is not the accumulation of right answers versus wrong. With the way these tests are graded, if every student answered all the questions right… the score would still be 70-30…  if every student answered all the questions wrong… the score would still be 70-30…   You Chamber of  Commerce Dudes are so in the dark… Don’t you ever read anything?

The results are a new, more accurate baseline, reflecting higher expectations for college and career readiness that today’s economy requires.

Whoa!  Internationally where are all the jobs going?  To places where the labor cost is cheaper.  International companies aren’t rushing to open offices in Finland.   They are doing it in China.  Massachusetts and Minnesota have the best public education…   Boeing move to South Carolina, one of the worst educated people in our nation.  Volkswagen is opening in Tennessee; a state that performed terribly on the NYEP, America’s Report Card.  Gov. Perry of Texas boasted he was the biggest importer of jobs  in the US, stealing companies away from other states.  They didn’t go there for that states quality of public education.  Texas is one of the dumbest places in the world…  Quit peddling that lie.  You are businessmen.  You know its not true.  The talent gets imported, and the cheap labor is farmed out to the locals,  because they will work for less….

Our children deserve the best and should receive the highest quality foundation for their education. Only by setting clear benchmarks for states and schools can we ensure improvement toward high standards and expectations.

True,  our children do deserve the best, which is why we need to wean them of Common Core immediately before they suffer irreparable brain damage.  In one year of Common Core, Delaware got stupider.  Just one year.  I hope this is a better one…. Didn’t I just see on, that the DOE was currently hiring… what was that job… Erasure experts?  Yeah, I think that was in the classification.  Must be able to erase without leaving evidence behind… And standards don’t teach.  Teachers teach…  Put a kid down with a slogan on the wall and nothing is going to happen.  Better education depends on letting teachers teach, and  Common Core completely disallows that…  Stick with the packet are its order. and the results are dismal. Just ask the DOE… We know this to be true, based on the data….

Some are worried that state budgets do not have enough room to cover the costs of the new materials and assessments that Common Core will require.

In all cases the money already spent on Common Core was wasted money.  It could have better been spent on teachers.

By working in cooperation with other states to develop the standards and assessments, states will save money over the long run. 

Not with states dropping out of the program left and right… SOUTH CAROLINA: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) is taking on the Common Core standards in a draft resolution that he says is “an incentive-based mandate from the federal government.”  KENTUCKY: Kentucky drops membership in one of the federally funded Common Core testing groups as many states (including Utah) have done: KANSAS: U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts introduced a bill Thursday targeting the U.S. Department of Education over the Common Core mathematics and English standards. The bill would stop the federal government “from coercing states to adopt education standards like Common Core” ARKANSAS: Arkansas Teachers Against Common Core join Arkansas parents to rally against Common Core at state capitol; TENNESSEE: Tennessee hitting the brakes on Common Core after realizing what Common Core and its testing will cost. NEW HAMPSHIRE: Nashua, New Hampshire principal writes a letter to the superintendent, saying his school staff “believe that the Smarter Balance [Common Core] Test is inappropriate for our students… this test will not measure the academic achievement of our students; but will be a test of computer skills and students’ abilities to endure through a cumbersome task; CONNECTICUT: Connecticut Common Core Costs Up, Teaching Time Down, Opt-Out Movement Takes Hold; IDAHO: Testing Crisis in Idaho Public Schools. NEW YORK: Defiant Parents: Testing’s Discontents; MICHIGAN: Michigan Schools Not Ready for Shift to Online Common Core Testing; CALIFORNIA: Los Angeles Classrooms Lack Technology Capacity for New Exams; INDIANA: Indiana Testing Not Designed to Improve Learning; RHODE ISLAND: Rhode Island Grad Test is Not a Good Measure of Student Achievement;  MASSACHUSETTS: Mass. Teacher Licensing Tests Block Minority Access;  MINNESOTA: Task Force Wants to Scrap Minnesota Teachers Tests; OHIO: Ohio House Passes Bill to Let Schools Delay New Test Requirements; D.C. DC Scales Back Test-Based Evaluations of Principals; D.C. Schools Forms Parent Task Force to Examine Testing.  Common Core is a very costly obligation and Delaware is looking to be the only state holding the bag… 

Failing to raise the bar and not investing in education will have disastrous effects for communities.

Ahh, we finally agree on something.  But it will not be accomplished with Common Core.  The way it will be accomplished is to accept that all humans are individuals and only by using an individual approach can each child get world class eduction that meets their needs.   The steps to that are as follows.

11:1 student teacher ratio in grades k-5th.  And again at 9th grade.

Students are grouped according to abilities, not by age.  A standardized test can be used to group similar scores in the same group of 11. 

The 11:1 ration allows the teacher to get to know each student and understand what they are and are not receiving.  It also creates a group in which each student wants to succeed. The students are all as same levels so as one student “gets it” he can help explain to the others, making learning fun and peer social.

Every 10 minutes of every school hour is spent exercising.  Building an energetic body is essential to building an energetic brain. 

This is how we are going to get every child to rise to his highest potential given to them by their genetics, regardless of race, regardless of economic station, and regardless of further Chamber of Commerce interference….

So… Chamber of Commerce Dudes.   Take the Common Core  test. and you will immediately understand every parent’s objection to Common Core… Put up… or shut up….