Usually, the media and the public look to the governor on state government policy questions. Lt. Governor Dan Forest is turning that equation on its head when it comes to the debate over the Common Core curriculum in public education. “Lt. Dan” has taken to YouTube to make his case against Common Core. House Speaker Thom Tillis is busy prepping for a US Senate run and trying to avoid being lynched by GOP activists. Gov. Pat appears to be keeping silent and staying on cruise control — stabilizing those poll numbers:
It’s unclear how much Forest’s views are shared by other policymakers in state government. The new board members are Republican appointees.
Kim Genardo, communications director for Republican Gov. Pat McCrory, said he had “not issued any opinion yet on Common Core.”
*Talk about a profile in courage.* Gov. Pat has “not issued any opinion yet” on one of the state’s — and the nation’s — most divisive and controversial issues? Really? Seriously?
[AHEM. Indiana Gov, Mike Pence (R) has signed legislation pausing the implementation of Common Core in his state.]
I can’t find a single classroom teacher who thinks Common Core is a good idea. Parents are up in arms. All kinds of community activists are up in arms. Meanwhile, the edu-crats on the school boards and in the central offices are singing Common Core’s praises:
State Superintendent June Atkinson said Tuesday that it’s unfortunate that some people want to believe myths about Common Core.
“How can people argue against teaching North Carolina students to read, write, speak and listen?” Atkinson said. “How could that be of the devil? How can that be bad for kids? I am so disappointed people would want to make this a political football. If we stopped implementation of the Common Core – this is the first year – our teachers would be in a tizzy.”
Critics have characterized the Common Core as a federal takeover of state education, but the initiative did not come from the federal government. The U.S. Department of Education’s Race to the Top grant competition did spur many states to reform curriculum and embrace the Common Core.
North Carolina was one of the first states to do so, and it won a $400 million Race to the Top grant in 2010, which was used in part to train teachers for the new standards.
“It’s totally false that the Common Core is a product of the federal government or President (Barack) Obama or (Education) Secretary Arne Duncan,” Atkinson said.
Um, you mean you haven’t been teaching kids to ‘read, write, speak and listen’????? Wow. Just, wow.
Let’s see: Atkinson and the transcribing lapdog who wrote this article say that Common Core DID NOT come from the federal government. But then the article goes on to tell us that the feds dangled some money out there to the states, promising to give it to them if they adopted the curriculum. Hmm. I am going to have to call manure on this one.
The lovely Ms. Atkinson then goes on to attack the character of Common Core opponents:
Atkinson said Common Core opponents aren’t being truthful.
“I just find it distressing that people have chosen to believe people who are actually lying, and I don’t use that word very often,” she said. “But people are lying about saying this is the part of the federal government taking over schools in our state.”
We give two thumbs up to Forest for striking out on his own. He did not run as part of a ticket with McCrory. It’s pretty clear that Team McCrory did nothing to help Forest in his hard-fought 2012 win. Lt. Dan doesn’t owe them anything.
It’s pretty clear that Gov. Pat has brought the Mayor Pat strategy to Raleigh: don’t take any firm positions on anything, and try to make everybody like you.
Lt. Dan is giving us some desperately needed leadership here.
Gov. Pat is into little more than self-preservation. Our state’s chief executive needs to hop on Lt. Dan’s bus — “Bubba One.” It appears to be headed in the right direction.