What is Common Core?
Common Core is a movement to create a common set of standards, a common curriculum, across the entire United States educational system. You can visit the Common Core website and read for yourself about the plan.
The concept is that if students across the nation are all learning the same stuff, are all held to the same standard, then you won’t have some schools where kids are at a disadvantage to other kids across the nation. A common curriculum also ensures common values and common culture across the United States.
Though on the surface Common Core appears to have laudable goals, when examined a little more closely some pure evil pops up. For example, for all schools across the country to have the same expectations for their students, the standards have to be lowered to the least common denominator. A quick look at the curriculum shows just how dumbed down it is. For example, kids no longer read classic literature, literature that defines our culture and is part of the “great conversation” of ideas from the ancients to today. Ideas, thinking, and facts are replaced by ideology like multiculturalism (the belief that all cultures and practices are equally valid, a variation on moral relativism), sexual promiscuity and deviance, environmentalism (the belief that “nature” is more important than people), and a denigrating of traditional American values and history.
The homeschool movement exists for the most part because the schools are already so bad at teaching kids. If all of our schools are as bad as our worst schools, how is that going to fix the education system? Proponents say that the worst schools will be raising their standards. Okay, so let’s say we accept that the standards will align, not to the worst schools, but to average schools. Average schools in America today are still really, really bad as far as academic achievement is concerned. And why on earth would you pull down the best schools in the misguided idea that everyone should have “equal” results.
But that’s not the worst of it. The scary part of common core is that all schools teach the same culture, the same values, across the entire nation. Whose values? Whose culture? Exactly. Not yours, we can pretty much guarantee that.
Your kids will be taught to accept all government approved behaviors and government approved belief systems and to reject those beliefs and attitudes not approved by government, which of course includes traditional families, Christianity, celebration of a belief in God, morality, virtue, and individual freedom.
Parents already complain they don’t have enough say in the curriculum taught in their local schools. Wait until the federal government gets their hands on it. Common core, once adopted by a state is not optional for schools. The teachers have to teach the lesson plans, they have to use the required books, they cannot add to or subtract from the curriculum they are given. Teachers will no longer be anything but regurgitating administrators of the official government line. Teachers who do not comply will be fired.
So why should Homeschoolers care?
Common Core is national, it applies to all children, no matter how or where they are taught. There will be mandatory national testing, probably every year, that all students, including homeschoolers, have to take part in. You will not be exempted.
Homeschoolers have become complacent because “homeschooling is legal in all 50 states”. Yes, but there are many, many people who still are vehemently opposed to you teaching your children and passing on your values in your own home. They want control of your children’s education.
I don’t care what or how you teach your kids. I don’t care if you are classical, unschooler, or Montessori inclined. I don’t care if you teach Christianity, New Age, Mormonism, Islam, Judaism, or Atheism in your home. I don’t even care if you’re for all the “government approved” morality and teach environmentalism and homosexuality to your kids, as long as you don’t force it on me and mine. But there are many people who do care. Many of those people are in government. The type of person who wants to control your life is drawn to government as a tool for force.
Common Core is not as much a way to fix and improve our education system as it is a way to control the information your kids are exposed to. It is a way to indoctrinate children to a particular world view. Personally, I believe in indoctrination of children. Kids are always taught a certain way to look at the world; the difference is that I believe parents are the ones who should control that, not government.
What Can You Do About It?
The fight against Common Core has to happen state by state. Most state legislatures, not seeing Common Core for what it really is, have already adopted it, to be implemented soon. But it can be repealed and rejected.
First you should learn more about Common Core. Read what people on both sides of the issue are saying about it and decide for yourself what you think of it. Then you should contact your state legislature, your local officials, and your state board of education about it. Explain not only that you are against it (or for it) but why. Give at least one clear reason for your opinion. Our state officials need to not only know what we think, but they need to be educated on the issues and what they’re really about.