MSNBC/Wall Street Journal released a poll that shows almost one-half of Americans have not heard of the Common Core State Standards. The poll was conducted between June 11-15 of 1000 adults. The margin of error is 3.1% +/-.
47% of Americans said they have not seen, read or heard news about the Common Core. 22% said they have heard about it a lot. 30% have said they have heard about this some. 1% said they were unsure.
Now keeping in mind 48% said no or that they were unsure a follow-up question was asked:
Just to make sure that everyone has the same information let me describe the Common Core standards in a bit more detail. The Common Core standards are a new set of education standards for English and math that have been set to internationally competitive levels and would be used in every state for students in grades K through 12.
Based on this information, do you support or oppose the adoption and implementation of the Common Core standards in your state?
59% responded said they supported. 31% said they opposed. 27% strongly supported it while 20% strongly opposed. First this is a positive spin on the Common Core. There is zero proof that these standards have been set to internationally competitive levels, but there is evidence that they haven’t been. Secondly, when 48% of those surveyed know nothing about the Common Core it is very easy to manipulate the results you want.
No mention of the Federal government involvement… that would likely change some minds. Then if you dig into the other problems… well it is rare for me to find anyone outside the educational bureaucracy who likes Common Core after they do more research.
Contrast that with a poll taken of New Yorkers by the Albany Times Union and Siena College (see here if the archive expires). This was taken of 874 upstate New York residents and has a margin of error of 3.3% +/-. It did not have a leading question.
46% of New Yorkers said they oppose the way the Common Core was being implemented. Only 23% supported it. 32% didn’t know or refused. More people opposed than supported across party lines (though those opposed were 18% higher for Republicans and 20% for independents). More people opposed than supported Common Core regardless of race, age, socio-economic status or where they lived.
They also asked about the current use of standardized testing in New York. 43% opposed, 23% supported and 28% didn’t know or refused. More opposed than supported pretty much across demographic lines with the exception of those making under $50,000 a year where those opposed and those who supported the way assessments were done tied at 34%.
Update: Richard Innes had an interesting analysis of the MSNBC/WSJ poll:
Now, let’s put this together in a way the pollsters clearly never considered.
Based on the first Common Core question, only 52 percent of the public knew anything about Common Core when the survey was conducted. Still, the poll says 31 percent either somewhat or strongly opposed the standards.
I would submit that the 31 percent opposed to the Core would have to have knowledge beyond the loaded question information to form such negative opinions. So, virtually all would fall in the total of 52 percent of all respondents that said they knew something about Common Core already.
Thus, it seems likely that 31 in 52 – that is 60 percent – of the people in the United States who know something about Common Core are opposed to the reform.