|Photo by Robin May|
|"The Governor does not determine learning standards, nor does he create tests" — state Superintendent of Education John White|
As expected, Gov. Bobby Jindal took steps Wednesday to pull Louisiana from Common Core testing, but Superintendent of Education John White says the new academic standards will remain in place for the upcoming school year.
Jindal issued a letter to the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, notifying the consortium of the state’s withdrawal; he also issued an executive order forbidding the state Department of Education from using the testing standards, while also freezing funding for the tests.
In a statement released Wednesday, Jindal takes a line straight from the mouths of Louisiana’s Tea Party, arguing:
[P]roponents weren’t up front about federal involvement in PARCC and Common Core. Now that we understand the federal overreach involved, we need to slow down and make the right decision. Some Common Core proponents suggest that we cannot have high standards without Common Core. That is a false statement. We need a Louisiana test that ensures children are performing at high levels so they can compete not only around the country, but around the world. We can certainly have high standards without giving up control of Louisiana’s education system to the federal government.
On the other side of the argument, White says the Department of Education and the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education remain committed to the new academic standards.
Contrary to Jindal’s attempt to scrap Common Core, White says the DOE will move forward with its implementation.
In a statement issued Wednesday, White says:
State and federal law have long required that Louisiana measure literacy and math performance through standards and annual tests. By using test forms and questions that make results comparable among states, we are following the Legislature’s mandate that we not only measure but also compete.
The Governor is sending a letter to the National Governors Association and the Common Core State Standards withdrawing Louisiana ... The Governor does not have this authority ... The Governor does not determine learning standards, nor does he create tests.
White’s statement was no doubt a ballsy move, and while Jindal’s attempt to pull Louisiana from Common Core is legally iffy, the real question now is how long it will be before Louisiana is looking for a new education super.
The countdown begins.