August 30, 2014

Panel makes Common Core recommendations

A committee makes recommendations on the Common Core Standards in Wisconsin. The panel stopped well short of scrapping the standards for math and language arts, but committee chair, Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac) said there are concerns, particularly that the standards allow greater intrusion into education by the federal government.

“I don’t think it’s a benefit for our state in the long-term to have a set of standards that are essentially coming out of Washington D.C. and are a cookie-cutter approach,” Thiesfeldt said. His comments were echoed by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos. “State or federal bureaucrats should not force feed local school districts educational standards,” Vos said in a statement.

State Superintendent Tony Evers hadn’t seen the recommendations, but notes educators who testified at public hearings were generally onboard. “The committee’s own data indicate what I’ve known all along, that the school districts in our state have been implementing the Common Core and feel it’s very successful, ” Evers said.

The committee has made eight recommendations, including establishing a legislative process to review the standards. “It would be best if Wisconsin had Wisconsin-based educational standards,” said Thiesfeldt. “Who knows better what is better for students than parents, and when standards are created based on what parents know, they should be created by parents in Wisconsin.

The Assembly Select Committee on Common Core is due to vote on the recommendations on Thursday.