School Administrators Pack Hearing On Common Core Bill

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Premiere Date: 
March 7, 2014

School Administrators Pack Hearing On Common Core Bill

The bill would create a board that would revisit the Common Core standards.

Episode Transcript

Frederica Freyberg:

Now to other state capitol news of the week. Wisconsin's Common Core Standards continue to be put to the test. This week the Senate Education Committee held a public hearing on a senate bill that would give the legislature the power to approve and rewrite those academic standards. Educators from around the state descended on Madison to be heard on the issue.  

As many as 100 superintendents from school districts across the state traveled to Madison in opposition to the senate bill that would give the legislature authority to approve new state k-12 academic standards.

JoAnn Sternke:

There is no doubt in my mind that this bill will politicize the process of identifying what our students need to be college and career-readily.

Frederica Freyberg:

Superintendents were united in their distrust of the legislature, and asked them not to change the so-called Common Core Standards in math and English because they are in place and they are working. But the bill's sponsor doesn't think the standards that Wisconsin adopted four years ago, along with states across the country, are good enough.

Leah Vukmir:

This bill is about one thing and one thing alone:  creating Wisconsin standards, Wisconsin standards that will set our students on a path for success. I don't believe Common Core does that. We should not work to be common. We should work to be exceptional.

Frederica Freyberg:

Supporters of the bill also say the Common Core Standards represent a heavy hand from Washington. Opponents say the bill to undo them represents a legislative mandate from Madison.

Kathleen Vinehout:

And I feel like the people that are here that are saying don't let the federal government tell us what to do, should be saying don't let Madison tell us what to do. We don't want Madison to tell us what to do. Can't you make this bill go away?

Frederica Freyberg:

The conservative Wisconsin Family Action spoke in support of the bill saying public input on the Common Core Standards was absent.

Julaine Appling:

I’m concerned about the process, and that it be in the light of day, that there be appropriate legislative oversight. And I think that's very appropriate.

Frederica Freyberg:

The president of a Middleton biotech company was at the Capitol to say the standards would help him recruit employees to Wisconsin because they would value the Common Core Standards.

Jeff Williams:

And I can assure you that with young families with children, education is their number one priority when they consider a move. That is-- even trumps the weather.

Frederica Freyberg:

Next week we go inside a classroom in Menomonee Falls to understand what the Common Core Standards look like in practice.

The senate education committee which held the public hearing did not vote on that bill. 

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