Because I speak across the country in a variety of settings, the flow of questions from the audience usually transmits what issues are churning are the grassroots level.
In recent months, more and more people have approached the microphone and asked for my opinion on “the Common Core,” and the questioner usually conveys great hostility towards or at least suspicion of the idea.
I have punted on most occasions as while I knew there was a new initiative afoot to bring uniformity to elementary education standards, I didn’t know where it came from or whether or not it would turn out to be a good thing. Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, himself a champion for sweeping education reform, is a proponent of the Common Core, but the critics have included a large number of parents and political activists, and include many high profile conservative leaders like Marco Rubio. On the other hand, many conservatives are voicing support for the initiative.
So I am digging in, and will do so via the radio show and the blog. Here is an opening offering, “The Schoolmaster,” an October 2012 profile of College Board President David Coleman who is credited as the major force behind the Common Core. I am seeking an interview with Mr. Coleman, and will seek out the education writers I respect like Bill Bennett and Jay Mathews as well.
I’ll start today, so if you want to send me any pointers to articles pro- or con-, please do so via firstname.lastname@example.org.