South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has written a public letter to Senator Mike Fair, backing his proposal to block the Common Core, which South Carolina's education board adopted in July 2010 following approval by the Education Oversight Committee.
While full implementation is set for 2014, some educators argued against putting the brakes on already-approved standards. Critics of the standards have asked senators to block the implementation of the math and reading curriculum in South Carolina, writes the Associated Press.
The Common Core initiative, which was led by governors and superintendents through the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, outlines the skills it has deemed necessary for students in kindergarten through 12th grade nationwide to learn to be ready for college and careers.
While forty-five states have already adopted the curriculum, Fair believes that the state of South Carolina should retain its own standards. But educators in the state believe Common Core would give a true measure of how South Carolina students perform compared to other states.
And Gov. Haley, who is openly critical about the national standards and the federal role in local education, has released letter to express her support for the block:
Dear Senator Fair
South Carolina's educational system has at times faced challenges of equity, quality and leadership – challenges that cannot be solved by increasing our dependence on federal dollars and the mandates that come with them. Just as we should not relinquish control of education to the Federal government, neither should we cede it to the consensus of other states. Confirming my commitment to finding South Carolina solutions to South Carolina challenges, I am pleased to support your efforts to reverse the 2010 decision to adopt common core standards.
While I understand and agree with looking outside South Carolina for ideas to improve educational outcomes, I firmly believe that our government and our people should retain as much local control over programs as possible. The solution to many of South Carolina's educational challenges will be found by sending more of our limited resources to the classroom and offering educational choices to meet the needs of South Carolina's students. Our children deserve swift action and the passage of a clean resolution that will allow our State to reclaim control of and responsibility for educating South Carolinians.
Thank you for the important work you have done on this issue; please let me know if I may be of further assistance.