U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan may claim Common Core is not the first step toward a nationalized curriculum, but the evidence says otherwise. On radio this morning, Glenn was joined by Heidi Huber of Ohioans Against Common Core to discuss the work her organization is doing to combat these standards.
“We have Heidi Huber on. She's the head of OhioansAgainstCommonCore.com. And I heard her last week on the Doc and Skip show on Blaze Radio in the morning,” Glenn said. “I learned more from her in a half-hour of listening on Common Core than I knew. I just think [she is] really well spoken. [She’s] approaching this in such a way that is really simple to understand.”
To begin, Glenn asked Heidi to explain the involvement of the National Governor’s Association in the Common Core standards.
“Well, I think the timing of us talking is incredible – the morning after the [National Governors Association] event,” Heidi said. “The gifts from the devil never come without a price, and that is exactly what we're experiencing. This idea that this is not a national curriculum – they have put in place every punitive punishment to suffer under if you don't do things exactly according to their plan, which results in a national curriculum.”
As Heidi explained, the concept actually dates all the way back to 2005, and the state involvement we are now seeing is a direct result of the 2009 stimulus package. Heidi laid out all the players involved:
Dial it back to the NGA conference in 2005, which was the NGA conference that incorporated the education summit of Achieve, Inc. That is where Bill Gates came in and was redesigning the American high school – the initiative for action. Governor Huckabee at the time was a chairman of the NGA… The National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, basically partnered with Achieve, Inc., which begin with to come up with the national standards. They don't call it that. They call it ‘the common goal’. The common set of standards among the states just for the objective of getting everybody at a minimum standard.
But they devised, with funding through the federal government, with funding from Bill and Melinda Gates, these have become now the pretense of the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund… This is tied to the Race to the Top… And it is the blueprint in detail of how to feed this into the states. The big bucks go back to the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund, and if I can read to you the statement from the American Association of School Administrators. These people are parts of the machines, so to speak: “Any school district whose state applies for accepted funds under the recent American Restoration Reinvestment Act is now required to submit to the state new and comprehensive information, with identifying information on every student and every teacher in their school district. This regulation applies to all U.S. school districts.”
“We banged this drum when the stimulus package was coming out,” Glenn said. “I said, ‘Do not take this money… You are going to be trapped in this national nightmare.’ All of the states said, ‘No, no.’ And here we are now.”
It is important to remember that Common Core is a set of standards, not a curriculum. And people like Arne Duncan are able to get away with claims that this is not a nationalized education system for that very reason. Heidi, however, has a different interpretation.
“How do you respond, Heidi, to the people who continually say, ‘There's no curriculum tied to this,’” Pat asked. “I don't know where these people are coming from.”
“Well, there's two-fold, but to me the most obvious answer to that is: Why do these textbooks have to be aligned,” Heidi asked. “We've never had to have textbooks aligned to a set of standards before now. Even with No Child Left Behind – that didn't involve national standards.”
Common Core supporters also claim the standards necessarily increase the rigor of American education, as to allow our children to compete on a global stage. The United States continues to dump billions of dollars in education, and the results are just not there.
“This is supposed to be so unbelievably rigorous, and this will put us on par with the rest of the world,” Pat said. “What have you found concerning that?”
“This is untested and unproven. I asked my legislator: Who has this ruse built? What happens when 50 million children fail simultaneously? What are you going to do? How dare you do this,” Heidi said. “We started going downhill when we enforced state level standards from the Clinton Administration… We've doubled our appropriations for education in since 2000, and we still have a crisis. We've gone from $6.8 billion, now we're up over $12 billion in 2015.”
You can learn more about Heidi’s work with Ohioans Against Common Core HERE.
Watch the entire interview below: