Jeb Bush Fails Common Core Test and Disqualifies Himself for Presidency
Jeb Bush thinks he can ride Common Core to the White House. He is using it as a litmus test to prove he is not a scary conservative and will not upset the federal gravy train. This is a grave misjudgment. It will be as toxic for him, as Romneycare was for Romney.
Bush would usher in the complete capitulation of our education system to the progressive agenda. Common Core reproduces everything wrong with Obamacare, and then some. It is unconstitutional, corrupt, and incompetent. And it is a government takeover of our children.
Like Obamacare, Common Core is unconstitutional: our founding fathers reserved education for state and local control. By finessing the word "standards," and ignoring the dictatorship of textbooks and tests over classroom teachers, Common Core pretends it is not a federal takeover of education. This is a transparent lie.
Common Core, like Solyndra, is crony capitalism at its worst. No big surprise that the experts who developed Common Core are already working for the textbook and test companies. They will take billions out of taxpayers' pockets.
Common Core is incompetent on an epic scale of fail. Bush claims that Common Core is the key to raising the quality of America's schools. This is not what parents and teachers across the country are telling us. Common Core is central planning versus the genius of the marketplace – seen in the success of charter schools – and Bush is coming down firmly on the side of regimented, centralized, elitist rule.
Many parents have posted hair-raising YouTube videos. "Arkansas Mother Obliterates Common Core in 4 Minutes" got 1.3 million hits. The mother explains how a 2-step 4th-grade arithmetic problem now requires 108 steps. Kids are required to draw circles; if they just use numbers, they fail. A Berkeley math professor whose 6th-grade grandson was in a Common Core math class wrote: "A student who gives the correct answer right away (as one should) and doesn't draw anything loses points."
No wonder that later the same year, the kids can't master long division. (See also here, for a photo that went viral of a child doing Common Core math.) Common Core math is an experimental approach that has proved impossible for children to master and impossible for parents to help their kids with. It requires mindless obedience to stupid rules, and it makes the teacher the only authority. It turns off kids who once loved arithmetic. Students who got As and Bs are coming home with Fs. That F should be for Jeb Bush, who is putting his political ambition above children's education.
An Iowa woman jokingly calls it "Satan's handiwork." A California mom says she's broken down in tears. A Pennsylvania parent says it "makes my blood boil.'' Stacey Jacobson-Francis, 41, of Berkeley, California, said her daughter's homework requires her to know four different ways to add. "That is way too much to ask of a first grader,'' she said.
The only mathematician on the Validation Committee, Professor Milgram of Stanford University, refused to sign off on the math standards because they are so dumbed down that they won't prepare our students for careers in science, technology, engineering and math.
Limiting the use of numbers in teaching arithmetic, Dr. Milgram explains, is a progressive fad promoting the idea that "at-risk" (failing) students learn better with drawings and stories, not numbers.
"Common Core creators believe the focus of U.S. standards should always be these students," Milgram said. "So they choose pedagogy that effectively turns off the average and even more so the above-average students in a desire to focus on the weakest students."
Prominent Berkeley mathematics professor Ratner also says Common Core math standards will move America "closer to the bottom in international ranking." She said it would not prepare students for entrance to an average college.
Jason Zimba, lead writer of the Common Core standards, publicly admitted that Common Core wasn't designed to prepare students for a competitive college, then claimed he hadn't. Remind you of Gruber, counting on the American middle class being too stupid to know they are being screwed for the benefit of social engineering?
The English educators are up in arms also. Professor Stotsky resigned in protest from the Common Core Validation Committee because Common Core requires 50-70% of the full-length books to be dropped from the curriculum to make room for "informational" material. The Washington Post reports that the Common Core suggested texts include the EPA's "Recommended Levels of Insulation" and "Executive Order 13423: Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy, and Transportation Management."
Huckleberry Finn has been dropped from Common Core's reading list, but it does have Blue-Eyed Girl by African-American author Toni Morrison, a book full of graphic sex scenes of rape and incest. According to The Blaze, the author describes these revolting acts as "friendly," "innocent," and "tender"; she "explains that she never portrayed the actions as wrong in order to show how everyone has their own problems."
When it comes to history, Common Core has also raised a firestorm of criticism.
Our first glimpse of Common Core as liberal propaganda is the College Board AP history test, "aligned" with the Common Core standards. According to Dr. Stanley Kurtz, a left-wing approach to history is baked into the test but presented in a deceitful way, with claims that school districts and teachers are free to add their own examples to the "framework."
The framework also insists that the examples must be used to illustrate the themes and concepts behind the official College Board vision. The upshot is that James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, and the other founders are largely left out of the new test, unless they are presented as examples of conflict and identity by class, gender, race, ethnicity, etc. The Constitution can be studied as an example of the Colonists' belief in the superiority of their own culture, for instance. But any teacher who presents a full unit on the principles of the American Constitution taught in the traditional way would be severely disadvantaging his students. So while allowing some minor flexibility on details, the new AP U.S. History framework effectively forces teachers to train their students in a leftist, blame-America-first reading of history, while omitting traditional treatments of our founding principles.
The Republican National Committee came to the same conclusion and passed a resolution last summer protesting the test:
... it reflects a radically revisionist view of American history that emphasizes negative aspects of our nations' history … includes little or no discussion of the Founding Fathers…Declaration of Independence … no battles, commanders or heroes … and presents a biased and inaccurate account of … American history.
Jeb Bush isn't listening even to the mainstream RNC. He doesn't care that instead of history, children are force-fed anti-American propaganda. Instead of literature, children are taught to read – and respect – government regulations. Many of the texts focus on causes dear to progressives, such as support for the welfare state and, especially, global warming.
Common Core is designed to fail our children. Its priority is political indoctrination. That interferes with actual education. Thinking for yourself, knowing the right answer yourself, and having a better vocabulary are penalized. The aim: cowed and obedient children, not allowed to think or problem-solve for themselves. Good future citizens of the Progressive State.
Reading and arithmetic are geared to bypass knowledge, so as not to disadvantage the lowest-level student. Progressive "experts" think it unfair if children from intact, English-speaking families, with parents who value education, have an advantage. So they try to teach math without numbers and English without books.
The new Common Core history, enforced by SATs, will teach children that America is a bad country, racist and imperialist, and that capitalism is cruel and uncaring. A teacher who rebels will be faced with students who can't pass the college exams.
Seventeen states have had second thoughts, including New York, Florida, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. Scott Walker is calling for repeal. Mike Huckabee now calls it a "frankenstandard." Bobby Jindal is suing the federal government on the grounds that Common Core violates the 10th Amendment. Mitt Romney warns against the federal government using Common Core to "promote an agenda."
"Alarm bells were going off in everyone's district," Michigan state Sen. Phil Pavlov said.
No alarms will wake Jeb Bush. He continues to use Common Core to brand himself a moderate and win good publicity in the mainstream media.
The fight over Common Core is nothing less than a fight for the future of our children and of our country. Our citizens do not want sneaky, unconstitutional federal control over our schools. We do not want our parents and teachers bullied by the power of private textbook and testing companies, out to make billions from this boondoggle. We do not want American children made the prey of activist liberals. We do not want them deprived of a quality education in reading, math, and history.
We do not want our children taught to hate learning and hate America. Not in our country.
Jeb Bush is still a champion of Common Core.