Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker told Glenn Beck on Monday during a radio show that he would “absolutely” sign a Common Core repeal bill should one land on his desk when asked. A good follow-up question for that would be this – how committed are you to seeing such a bill be passed? What have you done to fight for it?
Wisconsin grassroots activists I have spoke with are not convinced of his resolve. Currently Common Core is optional under Wisconsin law for school districts, but with Common Core-aligned assessments (currently Smarter Balanced) mandated for these school districts how many will actually opt-out?
Walker in his budget address earlier this year said that he was removing Smarter Balanced from his budget. Will the legislature put it back in? Will the Walker administration fight that? Even if this does happen will the next assessment be any better?
On one hand Walker says he is willing to repeal Common Core, but on the other he is pushing school accountability as a major priority. On what will that accountability be based? Assessments?
You see the problem here. Fortunately that effort appears to be dead for this legislative session.
Saying you’ll sign a bill is one thing, but demonstrating some tangible action is quite another. The problem is that we have seen a shift. Walker campaigned on repealing Common Core, but once elected he instead floated an opt-out measure. For Wisconsin schools to be truly free, they need to have different standards and not have accountability measures linked to Common Core-aligned assessments.
And they need a Governor who will fight for that.