Sunday, May 11, 2014

On the "Civil Rights" Defense of Common Core

It is a grave error to portray the Common Core Standards as a Civil Rights measure opposed largely by right wing fanatics seeking to undermine pubic education. Not only does this offend people on the right whose views on education and social policy it caricatures, it offends liberals and people on the left who have view the CCSS as the product of the same undemocratic policies which have been undermining public education in the nation's great cities and deluging all public schools with tests.

CCSS is inextricably linked to school closings, data mining, VAM, scripted learning and a whole range of policies designed to subject public education to top down, standardized control, making it a new area for profitable investment by test companies, software companies, and management consulting firms. Given that toxic brew, to describe CCSS as in any way as "progressive" makes a mockery of that term- even more so with the term "Civil Rights."

No matter what labels defenders of CCSS place on its critics, the origins and consequences of CCSS will be subject to greater and greater scrutiny, and its profoundly undemocratic character will be exposed.

Hysterical attacks on Common Core opponents will do nothing to discourage that kind of inquiry- indeed, it will encourage more people to wonder what CCSS defenders are trying to hide