Opposition to Common Core a Bipartisan Issue

Common Core education standards are such bad policy that they have done what many thought impossible – brought Democrats and Republicans together.

Last week, two Washington State Senators hosted a legislative meeting to discuss what can be done to remove the standards from Washington schools. Sen. Maralyn Chase, a Democrat, and Sen. Pam Roach, a Republican, were able to put aside their political differences and work together for the sake of protecting the interests of children across the state.

“Someone has to stand up for the kids,” said Roach. “Washington’s constitution specifies that providing for basic education is the Legislature’s top priority. As a parent and grandparent I know ‘providing’ for children means more than money. Providing for education also must be about more than money.”

“Common Core is uniting liberals and conservatives like no issue I have seen,” said Chase.

Part of this pushback is a response the Washington State Supreme Court, which has essentially threatened to hold legislators in contempt over an issue of school funding.

“Lawmakers set the policies that guide how education dollars are spent. Common Core does not make the best use of those dollars,” Roach said.

“Our state fell victim to the ‘testing-industrial complex.’ Now it is up to us to defend the children by withdrawing from Common Core,” said Chase.

The two senators are cosponsors of a bill that would remove Common Core standards from Washington and require the state to return to earlier standards that did not place so much emphasis on standardized testing. While the chances of their bill advancing this year are slim, given Washington’s political climate, the lawmakers are looking forward to 2016 when presidential politics are likely to make Common Core a key issue.

The event included presentations from educators, activists, education policy experts, and was moderated by Dora Taylor, of the League of Women Voters Education Committee.