Ohio Governor John Kasich does not expect to see an attempt to repeal the Common Core State Standards Initiative in the upcoming legislative session, calling it “hysteria.”
“I don’t expect anything like that,” Kasich told TheBlaze. “When you study the issue, you separate the hysteria from the reality.”
The issue is expected to be heavily discussed in the Ohio House, with Rep. Andy Thompson promising another bill attempting to repeal the standards, after having a similar bill stall in the last session.
According to the Ohio Department of Education, the state law does not require students to take the Common Core exam, referred to as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers. Parents have the right to opt out of the testing, but doing so comes with consequences.
Those students who do not participate in state graduation tests cannot receive their high school diploma, and third graders who opt out of the reading exam could face a second year at that level. These punishments have caused the number of parents who choose to opt out of the exams to be minuscule, writes Fred Lucas for The Blaze.
Kasich, who is considering running for the presidency in 2016, said Ohio is planning on going ahead with the implementation of the standards.
“We have carried it out. We have higher standards. We want our kids to perform better and do better,” Kasich said. “The standards are determined by our local school boards. There is total local control. I think there has been a hysteria about this that is not well founded.”
Education commission chair Rep. Bill Hayes said that merely repealing the standards would not solve all the problems associated with them, including testing. He went on to say that many of the issues surrounding the standards have been fixed, but the solutions would not be visible until the following school year, writes Benjamin Lanka for The Telegraph-Forum.
Although the Common Core standards are not labeled as a federal program, the “Race to the Top” school grants program run by the US Department of Education has linked the grants to states who adopt the standards. So far the standards have been dropped by three states – Indiana, South Carolina, and Oklahoma, with others in the process of reviewing them or making changes.
However, Kasich said the standards are, in fact, local.
“The standards were established by governors and were established by education professionals at the state level,” he continued. “In our state, in order to get higher standards, which we all want in America, it’s up to the local school board to design the curriculum to meet the higher standards. We don’t know what would be wrong with that.”