Archive for Friday, May 31, 2013

Bill sought by opponents of Common Core Standards before the Legislature

May 31, 2013

— Republican legislative leaders on Friday introduced legislation that could stop implementation of Common Core standards and proposed science standards.

The bill would set up a committee made up of legislators that would review educational standards and make recommendations next year whether the standards should be implemented.

For standards that have already been implemented, the committee would recommend to the Legislature whether the standards should be continued.

State Board of Education Chairwoman Jana Shaver asked state Sen. Ty Masterson, R-Andover, who is chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee, how the proposed committee would interact with the State Board of Education, which has authority over supervising schools.

Masterson said the education board handles policy and the Legislature deals with funding.

The Common Core standards are academic standards developed by states through a project that was launched by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers.

The Kansas State Board of Education adopted them as the official English language arts and math standards for Kansas in October 2010, renaming them the Kansas College and Career Ready standards. Teachers are already using them in classrooms in Lawrence and throughout the state.

The last-minute move against the education standards was seen by some as a way to woo Tea Party-backed legislators to vote for a sales tax increase sought by Gov. Sam Brownback.

The action came on the 98th day of the 2013 legislative session, which was only supposed to last 90 days and which GOP leaders had earlier said would be finished in 80 days.

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