Is Education ‘Reform’ Wrecking The Common Core?

By Jeff Bryant

Developmentally inappropriate tests, aimed at students as young as Kindergarten, are undercutting any gains the Common Core might help us make.

Photo Credit: Levent Konuk via
Photo Credit: Levent Konuk via
The latest news stories from the brave frontiers of a movement known as “education reform” are in, and the consensus view is that down continues to be the new up.

Personnel programs such as teacher merit pay that were supposed to improve the financial efficiency of schools are now being discarded for financial reasons. New competitive forms of schooling such as cyber charters that were supposed to reform the system through competition are now in need of “top-bottom reform.” Teachers who are held more accountable for children’s motivation to pursue education are discouraged to seek more education for themselves. Schools that are supposed to rescue children from poverty are bearing the brunt of deep cuts in spending.

Amidst this colossally dysfunctional scenario descends the new national standards known as the Common Core, what many believe constitutes education reform 2.0. Is it any wonder people are skeptical?

Whether you’re a big fan of the new standards or not, it should be clear that the old way of doing “education reform” will not work for the Common Core. Yet that seems to be the strategy rolling out, and no one seems to be coming forward to propose a better way forward.