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Common Core standards purport to encourage “critical thinking,” but much of the curriculum is a propagandized, dumbed-down version of subject matter better established by authorities at the local or even the state level.  Decentralized authority over school curricula is a more potent force for good education than a set of federal specifications, one effect of which is to encourage teaching to standardized tests. The Common Core curriculum is a step backward in math and language studies, and it is full of distorted information in both history and science. Contrary to assertions that its development was a collaborative effort, the “standards” were established by a relatively small cadre of “experts” and handed down from on-high.

Here are links to a two-part series outlining major concerns about the Common Core curriculum. Part 1 appeared in the Illinois Review and deals with english language arts and math. Part 2 appeared on the Heartland Institute blog and deals with history and science.

Missouri lawmakers recently approved a bill, now sitting on Governor Nixon’s desk, to “prevent the state board of education and DESE from adopting or implementing the Common Core State Standards. Additionally, it would require the Missouri General Assembly to approve future statewide education standards.” Here is the testimony from James Shuls, Director of Education Policy for the Show-Me Institute, a Missouri think-tank, in favor of House Bill 1490 before the Missouri House Education Committee.