Pharos-Tribune

Editorials

April 8, 2014

THEIR VIEW: Doubts about Common Core doubts

It wasn’t the most solid week in the movement to swap out the school standards known as Common Core State Standards for a homegrown set of measures in Indiana.

Sure, the General Assembly was able to get a bill to Gov. Mike Pence last month to scrap the set of college-readiness standards introduced during former Gov. Mitch Daniels’ administration and incorporated in federal education policy championed by President Barack Obama.

That bill was born out of growing distrust of the federal reach into state education policy, which eventually overtook the initial grumbling from teachers about Common Core’s makeup. Pence promised to create new Indiana standards that were “uncommonly high.”

But on the sidelines, where governors across the nation are watching to see how the Common Core story plays out here, Indiana’s defiance was getting the once over.

First, stories came about how Utah Gov. Gary Herbert said he’d spoken with Pence about the school standards philosophy: “In essence, they’re saying they’re creating what’s called the Indiana Core. It’s not the Common Core ... but their standards are almost mirroring exactly what is commonly referred to as the Common Core standards.”

Pence’s folks quickly tried to walk that back, saying Herbert didn’t get the essence or the facts of the conversation correct. Pence reassured everyone that he wasn’t into simply rebranding Common Core and calling it a day.

Then came this, from Tony Bennett, Indiana’s former superintendent of public instruction. In an interview with Chalkbeat Colorado, Bennett seemed to call the entire anti-Common Core movement into question. If only, he said, he’d called the standards something different.

“I always told my staff, it was one of my greatest mistakes in office: I should have re-branded those things as the Hoosier Standards for College and Career Readiness,” Bennett said.

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Editorials
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  • THEIR VIEW: Indiana's ethics laws in need of reform The Indiana State Ethics Commission’s recent approval of an agreement between the state inspector general and Tony Bennett settles the charges against the former state superintendent of schools.But the settlement raises more concerns about the loopho

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  • THEIR VIEW: Companies enjoying U.S. benefits? Pay U.S. taxes The U.S. Supreme Court keeps telling us that corporations are people, but some of these “people” have a curious sense of patriotism.They enjoy making money in the United States. They have a strong market here in a society where their rights and their

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  • THEIR VIEW: Loopholes a mile wide At least Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma agrees that it’s time to close the loopholes in the ethics policies for state employees.Just how gaping some of those holes are became clear last week, as the State Ethics Commission sorted through the cases

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  • ANOTHER VIEW: Let Indiana's inmates vote Lake County is trying to figure out how to allow incarcerated voters to cast ballots. If you think that’s a bad thing, think again.It’s important to remember that county jails, in many cases, house people awaiting trial. They have the same right to v

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  • THEIR VIEW: Rural fire departments set to make gains Rural fire departments struggle to get by.Faced with increasing costs and limited if not decreasing tax bases, many Indiana departments are merging as a way to share crews and equipment.Many departments have been lucky enough to receive tankers, truc

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  • THEIR VIEW: Dysfunction doesn't bode well for Pence presidency A window to the future may be unfolding in Indiana.By making appearances around the country and abroad, and speeches on foreign policy and topics only periphally related to Indiana, Gov. Mike Pence seems to be seriously exploring a run for president

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  • OUR VIEW: Corporations are now Average Joes? Do corporations have souls? Can corporations go to church? Can they fast?These aren’t questions one might expect serious adults to pose. But with its earth-shattering pronouncement June 30 in the case of Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, the U.S. Supreme Court

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