Critics of Common Core Educational Standards are again calling on members of the Mississippi legislature to reject statewide implementation of the program. MPB's Paul Boger reports critics used the first day of the 2014 legislative session to voice their concerns about the academic initiative.
After an early morning rally at the state fairgrounds, nearly one hundred Mississippians gathered in the second floor rotunda of the Capitol yesterday, to call on legislators to overturn the Department of Educations ongoing implementation of Common Core standards. They claim the standards are a hostile takeover of the state's educational system by the federal government, and that they do not do enough to lead students into science or math heavy careers.
Laura Van Overschelde is with the Mississippi Tea Party, she says the program needs to be reevaluated.
"We want the legislature to look at this." said Van Overschlede. "We want them to study it. We want them to make some assessments about whether it will do what it will do. We would also like to send a message to the Department of Education that you're going to commit to something that's going to teach our children bring something that will actually work for us. Something that will improve education in the state of Mississippi.
Republican State Senator Angela Hill of Picayune has been a vocal opponent of Common Core. She intends to write a bill that would abandon the standards and replace them with ones from another state.
"If we want our standards to be the best than we need to look at those states that were deemed exemplary across this nation, and better than Common Core during the implementation phase." said Hill. "They're out their in the public domain, they're government documents, Mississippi can adopt those and tailor them to fit our needs."
However, House Minority Leader Bobby Moak of Bogue Chitto says he doesn't believe there is a reason to overturn Common Core.
"Everybody in the Capitol if they think it's something that's not good, then I think you're going to see them hit the pause button and say 'Let's back up, and take a close look at this." said Moak. "Right now, it doesn't appear that that's happening, that there's enough there to stop it."
Common Core Standards are a set of requirements for grades K through 12 that sets uniform benchmarks in both Math and English, and have already been implemented in a vast majority of Mississippi's schools.