Republican Leadership Prepares to Ram Massive Education Bill Through Congress

Just a few weeks ago, Speaker Ryan promised not to ram through thousand-page bills without allowing realistic public analysis and input. But with the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which would reauthorize the failed No Child Left Behind, Speaker Ryan is already breaking his promise. The House and Senate bills that resulted in the ESSA “compromise” were rushed through those chambers with little allowance for public input. Then, a hastily appointed conference committee rushed through its rubber-stamping in a matter of hours. Now ESSA is being put to a House vote — only two days after the 1,061-page bill that

Common Core Killed These GOP Candidates

I recently gave The Hill some insight into the politics of Common Core: Republican governors struggling in the GOP presidential contest are weighed down by their failure to fully rebuke Common Core education standards, according to the conservative think tank American Principles Project (APP). Common Core, the set of education standards that were adopted by 46 states five years ago but have since become toxic with the conservative base, has not been at the center of the Republican primary debate, which has so far been dominated by national security and immigration. However, APP and its education director Emmett McGroarty argue that

Are Minorities Hurt the Most by Common Core?

This post was co-authored by Jane Robbins, an attorney and senior fellow at the American Principles Project. Proponents of the Common Core national standards have claimed from the beginning that a major goal of the initiative is to reduce the “achievement gap” between white and minority students. Common Core test scores in California and New York suggest that the opposite is occurring. And now we have confirmation from what could be called the premier Common Core state in the country – Kentucky. Prompted by an education establishment enamored of the progressive theories underlying Common Core (as well as by federal Race to

Dear Speaker Ryan: It’s Time to End ‘No Child Left Behind’

This post was co-authored by Jane Robbins, an attorney and senior fellow at the American Principles Project. To no one’s surprise, political elites have apparently crafted a bill (behind closed doors in the dead of night) to reauthorize the despised No Child Left Behind (NCLB) statute. Business as usual – working, everyday Americans are quietly ignored while the powerful education establishment and its elitist allies get their way. But new House Speaker Paul Ryan could alter this trajectory. He has expressed unwillingness to send President Obama legislation that he can use for mischief. Education legislation should fall squarely into that

Can Rubio Be Trusted on Common Core?

Breitbart’s Dr. Susan Berry has rightly raised the alarm about Sen. Marco Rubio’s presidential candidacy.  His statements and actions on education invite concern and doubt. Rubio speaks about America having to prepare children for the “global economy” and thereby parrots Common Core talking points.  He talks about the wonders of vocational education without really saying what he means by that.  He ambiguously declares, “There is no reason for the federal government to be involved in K-12 education through Common Core.” Does Rubio recognize the qualitative defects in the Common Core?  In particular, when he speaks about vocational education, is he

Did Voters Just Kill the Common Core?

Common Core is in a death-spiral.  Weekly, it seems, we hear of yet another blow to the system.  Test scores are down.  States are jumping out of the federally created testing.  Parents, teachers, and students loathe the tests.  The mainstream media refuses to report on the quality of the Common Core, but people are figuring it out anyway: The Common Core locks children into a dumbed-down education.  But even in the midst of all that, the news out of Kentucky stands out as a death omen for Common Core — and perhaps for centralized education policy altogether. Common Core opponent

Admit It: Common Core Is Lowering Students’ Academic Achievement

The country is in the midst of an education crash. The 2015 SAT scores were the lowest in a decade.  And the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), which tests 4th and 8th graders in math and reading, saw scores drop for both grades in math and 8th grade reading, while 4th grade reading scores were flat. Yet, politicians do not want to face reality.  Instead, they want to believe what the mainstream media and the Common Core proponents tell them—everything is fine.  They want to believe that the opposition to the national Common Core standards comes from the extreme

Fiorina: Get the Feds Out of Your Child’s Education

Most of the Republican presidential candidates at least pay lip service to the idea of local control over education. Some even call for abolishing the U.S. Department of Education (USED). But what do these positions really mean? Does “local control” extend to standards and testing (the federal government’s big stick), or should the federal government ride herd over those aspects of education? Would abolishing USED accomplish anything other than rolling its responsibilities over to a different agency (such as the Department of Labor, given the workforce-development mania in the national education establishment)? At last weekend’s Practical Federalism forum in New

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