May 14, 2014

RTT And Common Core: Coercion Or Catalyst?

By Bellwether

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An ongoing debate in the education world right now is whether the Obama Administration coerced states to adopt Common Core.  There are strong feelings on all sides, particularly among those who see Common Core as national overreach. But the stridency masks some nuance in how states are approaching Common Core and why behind the scenes there is bipartisan hope that the standards can weather the current storm (and also why despite the noise states are not jumping).

Maybe to understand what’s going on it’s one where you have you keep two things in mind at once. In September 2010 we asked the Whiteboard Education Insiders survey two questions about this very issue. First we asked, would the number of states adopting Common Core be as high absent Race to the Top? Seventy-six percent of Insiders said it would not have been. But we then asked if the Common Core adoption would be sustained after federal dollars linked to it stopped flowing? Seventy-nine percent said it would.

So perhaps both sides are right to some extent, but it was more of a jump start than outright coercion.

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