Duncan wants the mainstream media to help sell Common Core to an increasingly skeptical public

EAG News –

By Ben Velderman

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Common Core’s experimental, national K-12 learning standards are under heavy attack in a growing number of states, and that has U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan feeling a little defensive.

You write what you're told

That was obvious during Duncan’s recent address to the American Society of Newspaper Editors, in which he asked journalists to challenge the arguments of Common Core’s critics, reports Valerie Strauss of The Washington Post.

In his speech, Duncan predicted Common Core will be as historically important as Brown v. Board of Education – the landmark legal case that led to the desegregation of public schools –  but asserted that “the federal government had nothing to do with creating” Common Core standards.

“The federal government didn’t write them, didn’t approve them and doesn’t mandate them, and we never will,” Duncan continued. “Anyone who says otherwise is either misinformed or willfully misleading.”

Duncan then, as Strauss puts it, gave the editors “some tips on how to report the story.”

From Duncan’s speech:

“So do the reporting. Ask Common Core critics: Please identify a single lesson plan that the federal government created, or requires of any school teacher or district.

“Ask if they can identify any textbook that the federal government created, endorsed, or required for any school, teacher, or district in their state.

“Ask them to identify any element, phrase, or a single word of the Common Core standards that was developed or required by the federal government.

“If they tell you that any of these things are happening – challenge them to name names. Challenge them to produce evidence – because they won’t find it. It doesn’t exist.”

Duncan is technically correct in all of those assertions, but only in the way used car salesmen are correct when they’re trying to pawn lemons off on unsuspecting customers.

He conveniently left out a few key details.

Read more


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