Common Core Contentiousness in Store?

The debate over Common Core standards could become quite controversial in next year’s legislative session, says Andrea Zelinski in a political weather report on the growing storm.
Critics on the conservative right have begun assembling, lobbying lawmakers, drafting legislation, even setting up booths at county fairs to hand out information.
If the fight comes to blows, Common Core could pin conservative Republicans against the legislative leadership that aligns itself closely with the governor and his administration, who is holding firm on the standards.Co
Two-thirds of the legislature is made up of Republicans, many of them swept into their seats by grassroots tea party support, all too aware the 2014 election is right around the corner.
“We are developing an army, and we have over 700 people on it now who can mobilize when we need to put pressure on our legislators,” said Katherine Hudgins, a chief organizer for Tennessee Against Common Core and a political activist for the 9/12 Project and an officer with the Rutherford County Tea Party. “We will join forces with anybody of any stripe that has the same political concern.”
That’s where the plot thickens, according to (Rep. Mike) Stewart, a Democrat with serious concerns over Common Core. The topic can drive people of various political persuasions together and give political heft to an effort challenging any aspect of the new standards instead of making it an intra-party squabble.
Stewart has different reasons for picking a fight with Common Core, though.
“I worry that Common Core is yet the latest untested program forced upon the state from the Department of Education,” he said.
“We should be very skeptical of education ‘reforms’ put forward by this commissioner,” he added, capitalizing on discord among teachers frustrated with Huffman’s move to restructure minimum teacher pay scales.
Stewart is also concerned there’s already too many standardized tests for students to take, a topic that parents and school board members echo.

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