Oklahoma May Jettison Common Core

Oklahoma May Jettison Common Core
June 3, 2014

Joy Pullmann

Joy Pullmann is a research fellow on education policy for The Heartland Institute and managing... (read full bio)

School Choice Weekly #39

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has until Saturday, June 7 to sign or veto a bill to pull the state from national testing and curriculum mandates. If she does nothing with it, the measure will be effectively vetoed.

The governor, once a strong public supporter of the Common Core mandates, has been subject to public and private pressure regarding the bill. Reports say she’s met privately with emissaries on Common Core’s behalf from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute and with folks who have opposed it nationwide. Grassroots activists in Oklahoma and across the country delivered an 8,000-signature petition asking the governor to sign the bill.

The moms and dads who demanded that Oklahoma reject mediocre academic benchmarks also learned from Indiana’s Common Core rebrand: The legislation on Fallin’s desk requires the state to compare its new academic benchmarks to Common Core to ensure they are substantially different. It also requires the replacement standards be approved by the state legislature. These people aren’t taking any chances.

They’re right to be wary of the wily education establishment, which co-opts almost every reform idea thrown at it. That’s why removing Common Core is just a first step towards education freedom. If power over education remains concentrated in the hands of a few powerful people, coercive, nonsensical initiatives like Common Core will continue to roll down the pike. If that power is diffused and relinquished to thousands or millions of people--such as parents and teachers--it will be far less easy for Common Core 2.0 or 3.0 to spawn, and far less likely to consume so much of education so quickly.

MORE INFORMATION: Oklahoma Watchdog, Washington Post


School Choice Roundup

Common Core Watch

  • NORTH CAROLINA: A bill to replace Common Core has passed the House Education Committee 27–16. The bill would require the state to study alternatives and preclude Common Core remaining as-is.
  • ARIZONA: The state will drop national Common Core tests because it adopted them in violation of a state law requiring open bidding for government contracts. It will consider national Common Core tests during the bidding process.

Education Today

Thank you for reading! If you need a quicker fix of news about school choice, you can find daily updates online under the Ed News Roundup at http://news.heartland.org/education.

Joy Pullmann

Joy Pullmann is a research fellow on education policy for The Heartland Institute and managing... (read full bio)