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The Common Core
Volume 118, Program 8
12/18/2013
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The Common Core State Standards Initiative made headlines this year, but does it live up to all the hype? Mike Farris answers that question, along with your host Mike Smith on today’s Home School Heartbeat.

Mike Smith:
Mike, the Common Core has been getting a lot of attention this year. First of all, for our listeners who might not be familiar with the term, what is it exactly?

Mike Farris:
The idea is that all over the country, all children will have a core of instruction that they have in common. What it really means is a nationalized curriculum, and we have tried to avoid, as a nation, a nationalized curriculum for a long time, believing that public schools are best when they’re controlled locally, and the ability to choose their curriculum is part of that important component of local control. The Common Core is another kind of effort to have Washington, D.C., dictate curriculum standards to the whole country. They’ve done it through the governors, but the federal funding has been the key component of it, and it is centralized government planning, and there’s no evidence anywhere that centralized government planning ever has produced quality education for any child.

Mike Smith:
But why should we be concerned about that, Mike, as homeschoolers?

Mike Farris:
It’s really a euphemism for a nationalized curriculum. For a long time, this country has fought on very many levels the idea of a nationalized curriculum: believing in public schools, local control is best; believing for private and homeschools, that parental and private school control is best. We should all be able to define our own curriculum and not be subject to these dumbed-down centralized government standards.

Mike Smith:

Mike, thank you very much, and for more information on Common Core go to hslda.org/commoncore.


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