Bill Rice / ideastream
A participant’s tshirt at one recent anti-Common Core rally.
Many of Ohio’s schools have already incorporated the Common Core, a set of expectations for what students should know and be able to do in math and English at each grade level, into their curriculum.
The state’s full implementation of the learning expectations launches this fall.
But not so fast, say two House representatives.
Earlier this week, Andy Thompson, a Republican from Marietta who in the past has been vocal with his unhappiness about the Common Core, and Republican House speaker pro tempore Matt Huffman introduced placeholder plans for House Bill 597.
The bill could potentially cancel the Common Core. In its place, the pair want to adopt new standards that more closely resemble the ones adopted by Massachusetts. The Common Core has been adopted by the majority of the country, although several states have recently scrapped their plans.
So far, many of Ohio’s key education groups still support the Common Cores.
Here’s what several groups told StateImpact Ohio on Tuesday.
- Ohio Department of Education: “We’re going to do what we’re told to do,” said department spokesperson John Charlton, adding that the ODE will follow whatever guidelines are dictated by legislators. He said the department has been working for many years with state educators to help craft Ohio’s standards.
- Buckeye Association of School Administrators: The group’s Tom Ash told Ohio Public Radio’s Andy Chow that the Common Core better equips students for a post-high school world.
- Ohioians Against Common Core: In a press release on the group’s website, the anti-Common Core group applauded Thompson and Huffman, saying the duo’s efforts have “advanced our cause to protect Ohio’s children, parents, and education from the imminent centralization and nationalization of public education that is the Common Core.”
- Ohio School Board Association: “We stand strongly behind the Common Core,” said Director of Legislative Services Damon Asbury. “We believe it’s in the best interest of the children of Ohio. More rigorous standards are necessary.” Asbury added that this year’s Mid-Biennium Budget Review added several provisions about the state’s implementation of the Common Core, including delaying consequences for a year and reaffirming privacy laws.
- Ohio Federation of Teachers: OFT President Melissa Cropper told Chow that while she believes there’s too much emphasis on high stakes testing, teachers believe the standards themselves are good. Her viewpoint hasn’t changed since last year.
Thompson’s previous Common Core bill has remained in the House’s Education Committee for months. But this time, the Toledo Blade says hearings for HB 597 will head straight to the House Rules Committee, led by Huffman.