Ted Cruz Discusses Education Policy in Iowa

IMG_0258I interviewed U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), who has declared his presidential campaign, while he was in Iowa for the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition Spring Kickoff for Caffeinated Thoughts.  We discussed education first.

Shane: I write a lot about Common Core and you mention Common Core a lot in a number of your speeches.  You talk a lot about Common Core, however with Common Core actually being decided at the state level, what is it that the federal government can do to address the problem?

Senator Cruz: Well the federal government can stop mandating it and using Race to the Top funds to force states to adopt Common Core.  What the Obama administration is to use the coercive power of federal money to get states down this road, and they are also trying to intrude with federal oversight of substantive standards.  I think the federal government has no business whatsoever being involved in the curriculum that is taught in the schools.  We need to repeal Common Core, all together, I’m categorically opposed to it. 

I think that education should be at the state level, or even better, at the local level.  The advantage of having it at the state level is that it gives parents direct control over the education of our kids.  Education is too important to be governed by some distant bureaucrat in Washington – all of us as parents need to have direct input into what our kids are taught.

Shane: The Senate HELP Committee passed the ESEA reauthorization out, what is your position on that current bill?  Have you had a chance to read it?

Senator Cruz:  You know it is coming out of committee so I’m studying the details of that particular bill.  I believe we should be reducing, or even better, eliminating the strings and mandates that are coming out of the federal government regarding education.  We should be expanding school choice.  We should be empowering parents and children to choose the best education for their families and I am a passionate advocate of school choice.  I think school choice is the civil rights issue of the 21st century, and every child has a right to a quality education regardless of race, ethnicity, wealth or zip code.  So I’ve filed legislation, along with Senator Mike Lee, to allow the federal money that is currently going to education to follow the child, to be portable with the child so you can expand options so kids can have better education and a greater hope and future.

Shane: So like an education savings account?

Senator Cruz: Different from an education savings account, but I support that.  I support anything and everything that gives more choice to children and expands their options with education.

You can catch the entire interview here.

2 thoughts on “Ted Cruz Discusses Education Policy in Iowa

  1. Shane, “Common Core decided at state level” is a fallacy. In 2009, Race to the Top (RTTT), offered the states a waiver of NCLB, another failed federal plan that couldn’t live up to its promises, but they also had to agree to a new set of standards and testing, sight unseen. The CCS were already developed but unnamed, PARCC and SBAC testing are federally mandated. The very title, Common Core State Standards is a lie. The states had nothing to do with developing the standards. They were developed by a small cadre selected and funded by Bill Gates, and the standards reflect his socialist leanings. They are more properly titled Common Core Gates; Standards. American Values and Culture are undermined daily in classrooms. The Family, Religion, the Constitution, American History, and the Founding Father are discredited. These are right out of the 45 Communist Goals for America, entered into the Congressional Record–Appendix, pp. A34-A35, on Thursday, January 10, 1963.
    In addition, to agreeing to this in the RTTT application (most states didn’t get a dime of RTTT funds), Senator Cruz is spot on, the states adopted because they were over a barrel and coercive federal funds were tempting. Every phase of education is under federal scrutiny, the funds are drying up, and federally mandated technology, Longitudinal Data Systems, and recurring testing expenses are now the burden of the local school boards. Children are given intrusive surveys asking self-incriminating questions that police can’t ask of a minor child. Sexual activity, drug use (prescription, non-prescription and street) questions are the subject of surveys in schools. Surveys ask questions about family life, religious practices, family gun ownership, alcohol use, fuel used to heat the home, flow restrictors on showers in the home. And answers are sent up the line for the use of the Administration’s agencies.
    I haven’t read all of your interviews, just Walker’s and Cruz’. Although I prefer to vote for someone who has actually governed, Walker just flunked, all talk and no action. So has Huckabee and Bush. Cruz seems to understand the scope of the problem.

    I wish the South Dakota Congressional Delegation would quit parroting Arne Duncan.

    1. Bobbe,

      Yes there was RTTT money. I’ve been writing about Common Core since 2010 so I know the history. My point is that the Feds can’t repeal anything… Congress didn’t vote on Common Core perse, but Cruz is absolutely right that they can stop funding, and change how Feds are involved. Often we tend to blame the Feds, they didn’t create Common Core. They helped to push it onto the states with RTTT and later with NCLB waivers, but Governors and State School Boards are complicit as they were the ones who decided to adopt it. States are the ones who will repeal it, Congress can defund.

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