Yet another state may ax Common Core this week, when the South Dakota House of Representatives votes Tuesday to remove the educational standards from public schools.
Conservatives turned on Common Core – a set of national education standards encouraged by the Obama administration and passed with bipartisan support by 43 states and the District of Columbia – during implementation, criticizing it as a federal takeover of public education.
Now, as testing slowly begins with brand new curricula designed to meet the standards, conservatives’ ire has doubled. Oklahoma, Indiana, and North Carolina voted in 2014 to repeal and remove the Core; others have renamed the Core to try to defuse the hot button issue, and more than a dozen states have considered or are in the process of considering a review or repeal.
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In South Dakota, where the state spent $4 million implementing the Common Core, official testing is slated to begin next month after trial testing and troubleshooting last year. But despite their relatively new place in the state’s education system, the standards have already faced several reform efforts: Three earlier bills tried and failed to repeal or review Common Core in the state, according to Education Week’s legislation tracker.
Tuesday’s bill, HB 1223, was previously killed in committee by an 8-7 vote, but lawmakers are invoking a legislative rule that allows a tabled bill to be brought forward as long as enough lawmakers agree.
“It was a very close vote on a very hot political issue that I believe needs to be discussed,” the bill’s co-sponsor, Republican state Rep. Dan Kaiser, told the Argus Leader.
The bill would mandate the federally-encouraged educational standards be removed by June 2017 – a short period of time for new curriculum standards to be developed, written, and go through the public review process that typically takes a year.