By A.P. Dillon
Last week, I have an update on the status of replacing Common Core in North Carolina. To recap, from the looks of it, North Carolina’s Governor and State Superintendent are counting on the State Board of Education to shrug off the Academic Standards Review Commission’s (ASRC) work and go with a rebrand. I’d like to hope I’m wrong in that assessment, but that seems to be what they’re saying.
Going a step further, NC’s DPI is unhappy about not having a seat at the table for the standards review. The NC Superintendent has decided she’s going to hold her own commission. We see the same thing happening in Missouri.
State Boards of Education wield a lot of power, which is why watchdogging the ASRC will be paramount for North Carolina citizens. Mary Grabar has picked up on the theme of State Boards of Education being used as tools to keep Common Core in place:
Go to one state school board meeting and you will see and hear how much board members toe the line from the federal Department of Education, as they grasp for federal funds. I found this out by attending a meeting in Georgia in November where I heard a long-winded sales pitch for the Georgia Family Engagement Conference, an activity pursuant to the “Parental Engagement” section of the federal Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, where only pro-Common Core speakers were allowed. In contrast, five citizens were allowed three minutes apiece to make their case against Common Core at the state school board meeting.
As if “parental engagement” weren’t Orwellian enough, the upcoming annual meeting of the National State Boards of Education (NASBE), “a non-profit association that represents state and territorial boards of education,” has as its theme, “Leaders Learning from Leaders.” The agenda is full of Common Core buzzwords, like “career readiness,” “digital learning,” and “teacher evaluation.”
Terms like “career readiness,” “digital learning,” and “teacher evaluation” seem to be dripping from the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) and the McCrory administration in North Carolina.
It’s Not Over
The fight is not over. Not by a long shot. North Carolina’s Lt. Governor Dan Forest has been fighting Common Core from the start. In a recent Fay Observer op-ed, he’s restated his opposition and has called for citizens to get involved and to keep tabs on the ASRC – AND the State Board of Education.
It is important to know that every North Carolina resident is represented by six members of the State Board of Education (two elected officials, three at-large members and one district representative).
The members of the state school board are William Cobey, chairman and member at large; A.L. Collins, vice chairman, from the 5th Education District; Dan Forest, lieutenant governor; Janet Cowell, state treasurer; Rebecca Taylor, 1st Education District; Reginald Kenan, 2nd Education District; Kevin Howell, 3rd Education District; Dr. Olivia Holmes Oxendine, 4th Education District; John Tate, 6th Education District; Gregory Alcorn, 7th Education District; Wayne McDevitt, 8th Education District; Marcella Savage, member at large; Patricia Willoughby, member at large; and Dr. June Atkinson, state superintendent of public instruction, chief administrative officer and secretary.
All meetings of the Academic Standards and Review Commission are required by law to be public. Likewise, meetings of the State Board of Education are also open to the public.
I encourage those of you opposed to Common Core to communicate with the members of the review commission and the State Board of Education through email, phone calls or mail, or face-to-face. Express to them your desire that they exercise the authority given to them to repeal Common Core with the best standards in the world, made specifically for the children in North Carolina.
The battle is not over. In many ways, it is just beginning.
Keeping both the ASRC and the State Board of Education accountable to public meeting laws is crucial. Transparency that was non-existent with the adoption and implementation of Common Core in North Carolina cannot be repeated. To help with keeping up with the commission, I’ve begun profiles on the House and Senate appointees which can be accessed here. These profiles will be updated as needed and when contact information for the ASRC has been designated.
I urge citizens in North Carolina to get involved, to speak out and to keep all parties honest by keeping them on task to replace Common Core and not to rebrand it in North Carolina.
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A.P. Dillon (Lady Liberty 1885), is a Conservative minded wife and mother living in the Triangle area of North Carolina. A.P. Dillon founded the blog LadyLiberty1885.com in 2009. After the 2012 election, she added an Instapundit style blog called The ConMom Blog. Mrs. Dillon recently participated in Glenn Beck’sWe Will Not Conform. Mrs. Dillon’s writing, in addition to Da Tech Guy’s Magnificent 7, can also be found at StopCommonCoreNC.org, WatchdogWireNC and WizBang. Non-political writing projects include science fiction novellas that are, as of yet, unpublished. Her current writing project is a children’s book series.