PA Legislator Takes on Common Core With Bill To Repeal

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A state representative from Pennslyvania has filed legislation to repeal Common Core-aligned standards in his state.

If it moves forward, the bill would make Pennsylvania the sixth state to repeal or implement a review of the standards.

Pennsylvania adopted new “Pennsylvania Core” standards last year–revisions to their previous standards that reflected Common Core while rejecting some common aspects of implementation, including the Common Core-aligned standardized tests developed by two national groups and adopted by other states. State Representative Gordon Denlinger is now calling this move “rebranding a bad product in an effort to convince customers the serious problems we knew existed had been fixed.”

Denlinger’s bill calls for his state to develop entirely new standards. The standards would be developed by the State Board of Education along with a 21-member commission involving a mix of teachers, parents, community members, and state legislators.

Delinger’s office stated in a press release:

Denlinger crafted the legislation because he continues to hear concerns with the academic quality of the Common Core standards from teachers, school administrators, parents and students.

“While Pennsylvania made some minor adjustments to the Common Core standards, those adjustments were clearly not enough to salvage what will be a disaster for the quality of education in our state,” Denlinger said. “I believe Pennsylvania must lead the way in rejecting this continuous push toward the federalization of our educational system. For the sake of our children, we need to regain control of our education process by re-empowering our local school districts in order to restore the richness of the American education experience.”

Recent polling reveals that an increasing number of Americans oppose the standards.

The standards were pushed on the states by Federal Race to the Top funding with little to no review by local authorities. Many teachers and parents now view the standards as an unwelcome and unnecessary imposition on their schools, and object variously to their content, implementation and development. This is resulting in a movement against nationwide standards and a move towards more local, state-specific standards, as Denlinger’s bill would endorse.