In the May 19 story "Pa. Education Standards Running into Resistance," Tim Eller, spokesman for the state Department of Education, indicated if Pennsylvania does not implement state Common Core education standards then we will be required to follow the national Common Core. All of us should ask Mr. Eller to produce the document that will cause that reverting to happen, and we need to see who signed off on that paperwork. This is even clearer evidence that Pennsylvania has allowed itself to give up more state and local control of our education system. The devil is in the details of the documents and in what Pennsylvania is saying to the U.S. Department of Education, as opposed to what they are saying to us.
Has anyone bothered to ask if they are quality standards anyway? Experts have looked at the national Common Core, which is the framework for the state standards. There is a great deal of concern that the Pennsylvania Common Core standards are not quality standards that prepare students for college and the workforce. The Pennsylvania Legislature needs time to access these changes, which members have not been able to do up to this point. We had standards for years, and are they saying only now after thousand of students were educated under the old standards that Pennsylvania has finally gotten all of this right? Or maybe it is an issue of selling our students out for the all mighty federal dollar.