Editorial: The politics of Common Core — State school board has its hands full with real problems
by The Anniston Star Editorial Board
Jan 22, 2014 | 2980 views |  0 comments | 25 25 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Alabama Tea Party member Kay Day of Irvington, Ala., demonstrates in front of the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery, Ala., as lawmakers gathered inside on the first day of their regular legislative session.  Day was protesting Alabama's efforts in the Common Core education guidelines. Photo: Dave Martin/The Associated Press
Alabama Tea Party member Kay Day of Irvington, Ala., demonstrates in front of the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery, Ala., as lawmakers gathered inside on the first day of their regular legislative session. Day was protesting Alabama's efforts in the Common Core education guidelines. Photo: Dave Martin/The Associated Press
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Earlier this week in this space, we explained how the Alabama Board of Education did its best to pacify Common Core critics.

We commend Superintendent of Education Tommy Bice and the five board members who went to great lengths last week to help those residents (and two fellow board members) shuffling through a swamp of fevered conspiracy.

The Common Core is an initiative created with the states and promoted by various nonprofits dedicated to improving U.S. public education. Recall that in 2010 Alabama’s state school board adopted those standards by a 7-2 vote. Republican Gov. Bob Riley was a supporter, as were dozens of other governors, both Republicans and Democrats.

Yet, opponents would have us believe free of evidence that Common Core’s aim is the spread of godless socialism.

This is predictable and nothing new. Advocates for quality education in Alabama have always faced opposition that preferred to deal in scare stories.

Common Core opposition, Alabama Association of School Boards executive director Sally Howell recently told us, is “mostly driven by politics and it’s easy to get people riled by this.”

If true, this fight against Common Core is doing a lot to (a.) fill the coffers of organizations leading the charge; (b.) keep stirred up the voters needed to win elections; and (c.) perpetuate on some level a cynical ploy led by someone or several someones who know better.

Alabama’s school board has its hands full without wasting time going back over settled policy.
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