California Avoiding Much of the Common Core Animosity

Subject to a larger amount of national debate, Common Core has mostly avoided ruffling California feathers.

Both opponents and advocates of Common Core within California agree, choosing NOT to tie student test scores to teacher evaluations was a good idea.

The AP’s Lisa Leff reported that “The 2012 decision cost the state $49 million from the federal Race to the Top grant program, as well as a reprieve from the sanctions in the 2001 No Child Left Behind law for schools defined as low-performing based on test results.”

California Federation of Teachers President Joshua Pechthalt confirmed, "When you don't attach those high-stakes tests, then you've really cut much of the opposition."

California has also benefitted from the consistently Democratic controlled government gaining its hold on Sacramento just a short time after California’s State School Board voluntarily adopted the standards under GOP Governor Schwarzenegger, who at the time was relatively undecided about the issue. Other GOP supporters were some of the policies first critics.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson has still taken some steps to disassociate from the larger stigma surrounding Common Core, calling the revised state benchmarks “"California Standards" instead. In advocacy of this change, Torlakson said, "We are doing it the right way, and I call it the California Way - sensible, gradual and collaborative."

For greater detail on California Common Core, see here.

Image Credit: Flickr User comedynose, via (CC BY 2.0)