A Gwinnett County School Board meeting Thursday night offered the opportunity for several district residents to criticize teaching materials and lesson plans they claim show the deficiencies of the Common Core educational standards. The Gwinnett Daily Post tells the story:
Ken Craft said he’s actively fought against Common Core for several years, and cited historical inaccuracies during the Revolutionary War in materials that were proposed for fourth graders. Ken Craft also disagreed with comparisons of the Arab Spring to the American Revolution.
He went on to question whether materials designed for an English class would better fit alongside social justice and called it obvious liberal bias.
“A lot of us have been criticized as tea baggers and what not, but it’s not a conspiracy if it’s true,” Ken Craft said. “And I believe Common Core is the problem here, or the way the books have been written to the standards. Again, I think the process is flawed. If these are the finalists, there is a problem somewhere.”
At the meeting, Craft’s wife Judy brought along a 23 page PowerPoint presentation to illustrate what she said was Marxism and Leninism being advocated in textbooks.
School board members said the concerns about the curriculum were being brought to the right place. Chairman Dan Seckinger said the School Board would be offering information on the topic in the near future, while board member Robert McClure mused about the wisdom of a common standard:
There are multiple issues, one is whether the intent of coming up with a common standard makes sense, on the surface of it, I think it makes a lot of sense, but also one has to ask whether what you give up for that is worth it,” he said. “I think that’s a philosophical issue that for me I’m still wrestling with very strongly, but I’m having some questions about which way I’ve been in the past. That’s something all the local School Boards will have to wrestle with across the country. How much are we willing to have somebody else’s input about what our children learn?”
Meanwhile, the Georgia House Federal Government’s Role in Education Study Committee wrapped up its final meeting at the State Capitol on Thursday. At that meeting, the question of where and how to regulate curriculum was discussed, according to the Gainesville Times. After Fulton County School Superintendent Robert Avossa claimed that control over the material taught to students should be regulated by the State School Board rather than the legislature, he found agreement from the committee’s Chair Brooks Coleman, who is also Chair of the House Education Committee, who said, “I personally don’t know that we should be legislating curriculum. But that’s just a statement.”
The committee is expected to issue a final report by the end of the month.