It’s been about nine years since the Obama administration lured states into adopting Common Core sight unseen, with promises it would improve student achievement. Like President Obama’s other big promises — “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor” — this one’s been proven a scam.
“If you set and enforce rigorous and challenging standards and assessments; if you put outstanding teachers at the front of the classroom; if you turn around failing schools — your state can win a Race to the Top grant that will not only help students outcompete workers around the world, but let them fulfill their God-given potential,” President Obama said in July 2009.
He went on to state his faith that Common Core — at that point unwritten — would “not only make America’s entire education system the envy of the world, but we will launch a Race to the Top that will prepare every child, everywhere in America, for the challenges of the 21st century.” Race to the Top was a $4 billion money pot inside the 2009 stimulus that helped bribe states into Common Core.
So here we are, nine years later. Common Core has been officially rolled out into U.S. public and even many private schools for at least three to five years now. Are American children increasingly prepared for the “the challenges of the 21st century”? We’re actually seeing the opposite. They’re increasingly less prepared. And there’s mounting evidence that Common Core deserves some of the blame.
Student Achievement Largely Down or Flat
ACT scores released earlier this month show that students’ math achievement is at a 20-year low. The latest English ACT scores are slightly down since 2007, and students’ readiness for college-level English was at its lowest level since ACT’s creators began measuring that item, in 2002. Students’ preparedness for college-level math is at its lowest point since 2004.
SAT scores also dropped post-Common Core until it fully implemented a new version tailored for Common Core. How convenient. Even after the test was overhauled to match Common Core, average test scores increased by 0.7 percent in the most recent results. It represents almost no difference to pre-Common Core results, and the public can’t know exactly how the scores were recentered and altered, either.
In all the previous SAT overhauls, average scores technically went up but statistical analyses show they’ve actually been steadily losing ground over the past 60 years. In other words, the SAT has a history of score inflation, and Common Core is doing nothing to reverse that.
No one should say these scores prove anything about the Core. It is worth nothing, though, that the SAT scores were likely to go up because last year transitioned to a new SAT format https://t.co/d1FvE8BYrg
— Neal McCluskey (@NealMcCluskey) October 25, 2018
Almost a year ago I wrote about the latest round of international tests that publish every five years. They showed U.S. fourth graders declining on reading achievement. The 2015 results on the most reliable nationwide U.S. test showed the “first ever significant decline of 2-3 points – about a quarter of a grade-level worth – in mathematics at both grades 4 and 8, and in grade 4 reading.” The next iteration of that test showed no gains again.
During the Obama administration, writes Harvard professor Paul Peterson, “No substantively significant nationwide gains were registered for any of the three racial and ethnic groupings in math or reading at either 4th or 8th grade.”
They Told Us Common Core Would Fix This Problem
We were promised that Common Core would reverse these trends. Think tankers Michael Petrilli and Robert Pondiscio wrote to West Virginians in 2015 that “The Common Core should help to boost college readiness — and college completion — by significantly raising expectations.” Jeb Bush wrote in National Review in 2013, “To compete with the rest of the world, we must produce competitive high-school graduates. That means we have to make sure that the skills they are learning are aligned with what employers and colleges expect high-school graduates to know…the Common Core State Standards, set an ambitious and voluntary goal line.”
Simply look at test scores since Jimmy Carter created the DOE, common core just put the peddle to the metal on producing poorly educated kids who hate their country but have not been taught anything about it.
Well, you gotta hand it to Obama… he’s batting a thousand. Every aspect of his tenure was a failure. Probably more than anything else, what negatively impacts learning and teaching is discipline and Obama even undercut that, culminating in the Parkland school massacre.
It’s not nerve; it lack of accountability. Obama has never had to worry about being called out for telling a lie because very little of the media will call him out on it. So, it does not require bravery to lie, lie, and lie again if most of the media is going to provide you with cover.
grandson is going on six, common core, can not tie his shoe, shoes are slip on or zipper. can not read. lives in ca. with liberal parents. violent temper explosions common- psy “just expressing his inner feelings”