In Appleton, Walker details Common Core views

APPLETON – Friday, Governor Scott Walker went into further detail on why he wants the state Legislature to repeal Common Core educational standards.

Walker says educators in the state should set academic standards for Wisconsin Schools.

“Our legislation would put into place a group that would include parents, teachers, principals, educators, and people in higher education all from the state of Wisconsin,” said Gov. Scott Walker.

Common Core is a set of academic standards which includes subjects like English and math. The standards outline what a student should know at the end of each grade level.

“We’re putting more power in the hands of people here in Wisconsin,” Walker said.

Wisconsin State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers disagrees.

In a statement released Friday, he said, “The notion that Wisconsin could simply repeal our standards or take a two year time out on our assessments not only runs counter to both state and federal law, it jeopardizes important reforms like educator effectiveness and school and district accountability.”

The state adopted Common Core standards four years ago. The Green Bay Area Public School District said it spent about $6 million to include textbooks and other materials to align with the new standards.

“We feel as if what we have been preparing our students for will prepare them to meet the needs of their future,” said Mark Smith of Green Bay Area Public School District.

Kim Davis works for Bay Lakes United Educators and she has another view.

“I’m surprised that he’d be wanting to repeal the Common Core state standards,” she said.

Davis says the standards put everyone on the same page. Because of Common Core, Many districts are implementing new standardized tests.

“We have what’s called the smarter balance assessment statewide test coming in 2014/2015. The Common Core state standards and that state assessment have been aligned. If we change now, the Common Core state standards, there won’t be alignment and we’re going to be asking students to take assessments on materials they necessarily haven’t been taught,” Davis said.

“If they’re aiming for high standards, no matter what the standards are, they’ll do well. If they’re just teaching the test, they’re going to have some different challenges,” said the governor.

Some Republican legislators have questioned Governor Walker’s stance on Common Core.

Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said Friday that changing the academic standards and meet everyone’s concerns would be very difficult.

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