Monthly Archives: September 2013

September Meeting Summary – Common Core

What is Common Core ? In a Gallup Poll conducted 3 weeks ago, 2/3 of those sampled had no idea.

It is appalling to think that what may be the opening salvo in a federal effort to remake or take over the entire K – 12 education system in America is virtually unknown to 2 of every 3 people.

Last evening Lindsey Burke, the Will Skillman Fellow for the Heritage Foundation gave over 100 attendees, including several local school district administrators and school board members, an opportunity to overcome some of that ignorance.

According to Ms Burke, proponents of Common Core claim it will serve these purposes:
1. Enable parents to measure their own children against national student test scores
2. Create college / career ready students
3. Prepare American students for competition in the global marketplace/economy
4. Boost U S military combat readiness (yes – boost military combat readiness)

With a great command of the facts, supported by opinions from experts in the fields of mathematics and English language skills education, Ms Burke deftly refuted each of these claims. One great potential flaw of Common Core is the possibility that, like No Child Left Behind, another failed federal education program, the central planners in Washington didn’t get it right. Common Core will impact every student in every school district in America. An attempt to shoehorn all students in all school districts in all states will end up serving no one.

Ms Burke, a strong advocate of choice, discussed a new education funding/delivery model recently enacted in Arizona – Education Savings Accounts. The state gives 90% of the funds it would otherwise spend on a student to the parents of that student in the form of a restricted use debit card. The parents can then use those funds to pay for texts, tutors, private school tuition – all things they can choose to tailor an education plan specific to their student. In addition unused funds can be rolled forward from year to year – and even end up being used for college tuition.

Following some very good give and take between Burke and some local school administrators, Representative Fred Keller gave a brief update on a package of bills that will establish state education standards currently being considered by the General Assembly.

SVC National Debt Tracker

Debt at Beginning of Meeting $ 16,932,740,252,912
Debt at End of Meeting 16,932,741,942,570
Increase in Debt during the Meeting $ 1,689,658

Next Meeting

Monday October 14 – 7:00 PM. Rep Lou Barletta will update SVC on immigration reform.