BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Groups of parents, tea party supporters and teacher union leaders are asking the state's top school board to change course on the use of tougher educational standards called the Common Core.

The debate comes up Tuesday before the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, which approved the standards three years ago without controversy. But in recent months, the Common Core has become a target for criticism.

The Common Core is a set of grade-by-grade benchmarks to judge students' knowledge. Forty-six states are using the standards, which will allow states to compare their students' performance.

Supporters say the standards will better prepare students for careers and college.

Critics say they represent a shift to nationalized education, and they say school districts and teachers haven't received enough training to use the standards.

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