Your Opinion: Oppose Common Core agenda for education

Dear Editor:

Please support Congressman Leutkemeyer’s letter to Arnie Duncan, head of the US Department of Education that opposes the nationalization of education and adherence to the Race to the Top/Common Core Curriculum agenda and marginalizing our children’s education, including home schools.

• Common Core removes local control of Missouri K-12 education standards and puts that in the hands of private trade organizations who wrote and copyrighted the standards and are not accountable to the public which pays for their implementation.

• Allows the federal government to dictate the terms of teacher evaluations.

• Makes it nearly impossible for local school districts to control costs. Independent consortia develop assessment tools which our districts must use. These on-line assessments are not only far more expensive than our existing MAP tests, they are a technical impossibility for many schools in our state who do not have broadband Internet access.

• Common Core Standards are not international benchmarks as marketed, nor been tested or found to be superior to existing state standards. Their implementation in 45 states amounts to a massive pilot program that uses our children as test subjects.

• Common Core assessments ramp up collection of personally identifiable data on our children. Through various agreements this data will be sent directly to the US Department of Education who have changed the Family Education Rights Privacy Act (FERPA) to allow this data to be shared with other government agencies and third parties without our knowledge or consent.

• The architect of the Common Core Standards has vowed to align SAT tests to these standards, thereby pressuring home and private schools to also teach these standards. Millions of children will be lost inside a one size fits all system designed to create equal mediocrity among the new “global citizens.”

Issue-oriented letters to the editor in response to this or about other local topics are welcome. All letters should be limited to 400 words. The author's name must appear with the letter, and the name, address and phone number provided for verification. Letters that cannot be verified by telephone will not be published. Send letters for publication to editor@newstribune.com

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