No Common Core Does Not Require Teaching Islam

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“Common Core requires teaching kids about Islam!”

This idea has been out for some time, and I don’t think I’ve ever addressed it directly. I had a friend share an article with me this morning that made this assertion and had seen it floated around on social media before.

I don’t think people who make these statements realize how much damage they do to our cause when they spout stuff like this. It degrades our credibility. It gives the media and Common Core advocates something to focus on rather than on our substantive arguments. Some policy-makers, unfortunately, dismiss us as a bunch of kooks.

It ticks me off because I have worked since 2010 to develop or highlight reasonable arguments and legitimate critiques of the standards and all claims like these do is take us off message.

First, the Common Core State Standards are math, ELA and literacy standards. I have read them, and I can assure you they say absolutely nothing about Islam, let alone require schools to teach about it.

Second, textbook publishers have an agenda. Progressive publishers have had an agenda before Common Core, and they will continue to have an agenda long after Common Core is gone. When publishers include it in curriculum that has a “Common Core-aligned” label on it does not mean Common Core requires it.

Third, if we can assign any blame to Common Core at all, we can thank the misguided focus on “informational text” which has driven the glut of “Common Core-aligned” curriculum in various subjects.

So just because some publishers promote Islam does not mean Common Core requires it, and just because some Common Core advocates push Islam does not mean it is the standards. So can we please drop this argument once and for all?

8 thoughts on “No Common Core Does Not Require Teaching Islam

  1. Common Core, at the moment, is bad stuff. But it has the potential to become extremely bad stuff.

    For a long while now, the great debate has been about various lessons and approaches that have emerged. Are they or are they not Common Core sanctioned? I used to think that was a valid question. Not any more.

    The very sponsors of Common Core hardly seem to mind these curriculum excursions into absurdity … such as rewriting American history to coalesce with the current pc mindset … or this sudden extra-emphasis and empathy for all things Islamic.

    They’re barely shivered by stomach-churning developments in sex education … for the littlest of students … who are now exposed to startling information and vividly detailed sexual escapades … all under the guise of healthy living.

    They seem soothed by the politically charged alterations to historical documents and events … provided they tumble to the left of center.

    Anyone and everyone seems welcomed in the Common Core tent of the weird and the offending.

    If you’re up for skewering America and her history, hop on board. Inclined toward seedy sexual stuff? Welcome home! In favor of bashing oil or coal production … or sanctifying every tree and bog and swamp? There’s a slot for you in the new school mayhem.

    Anyone with a beef gets a big plate at the school buffet of all-you-can-eat nonsense.

    Got an issue against the military? Scribble out a unit or a lesson package. You’re in.

    Got hang-ups about climate change or homosexual marriages? Fire away.

    Got a bug up your nose about Christianity? Punch out a screed about fanatics and zealots and it’ll find is way into the schools … and into your child’s head.

    The point?

    Common Core has given educational cover for a slender minority to pollute the education environment with any ideology whatsoever … and it provides those points of view with a certain legitimacy. And a captive audience.

    That minority insists that America must be altered, changed, renovated, rejuvenated, redirected … and most especially … cured. But only if those cures pass a certain muster.

    They insist that America needs to be shamed … made to appear as sinful as any other on the planet.

    It’s time to silence those who think this is an exceptional nation because … because it makes us standout a bit too much from the rest of the miserable world. And we can’t have that. No, siree.

    We’re even head-bashed into sympathizing with the new medievalists … those Islamists currently on head-collecting missions in the sands of the Middle East … who will one day rocket us into a modern armageddon of real life-or-death preservation.

    It now seems wiser to “understand” our enemies than to question them. Or fear them. It’s now more noble to search for the vomit-inducing “root causes” of their bloody neo-medievalism. History is chock-full of dumb-sulliy mistakes like that.

    In schools today, espousing contrarian points of view will get you tattooed as a racist, a xenophile, a homophobe, a sexist, a capitalist-pig, a neanderthal … or a sick conservative.

    The flood-gates are wide-open for every miscreant to groan and moan and set the record unstraight … because that’s part and parcel of the New Nonsense.

    A horde of whorey intellectuals is determined to retool this nation into a supplicating, value-free, nonjudgmental mess.

    Hoping for us to become another miserable nation … like most of the other countries on this planet.

    It’s time we all clawed back the country that has prospered us all. Before it’s too late.

    And it’s getting late … fast.

    Denis Ian

  2. Well tell that to the parents in Bristol, TN. I am supplying the title of a 7th Grade Pacing Guide that was taken directly from the school computer system. If you would like a copy of the entire Pacing Guide I will gladly forward it to you. Criticizing people for saying CC requires teaching Islam is kind of unfair when things like this pacing guide are actually being used in our public schools. And I also find it very strange that 7th grade schools all over the country are teaching the same extensive one-sided study of Islam. And that ACCESS ISLAM is funded in part by our own US Dept. of Education.

    Here is the title I copied from the pacing guide: 7th GRADE COMMON CORE SOCIAL STUDIES PACING GUIDE

    1. The truth is unfair? I’m not denying Islam is being taught in some schools. I’m just saying it has nothing to do with the standards. Blame the textbook publishers, but there is not a single standard that calls for the teaching of Islam, none.

      Certainly parents should battle it, but to tie it to Common Core just conflates the issue and discredits the messenger.

    2. You and I both know that the only social studies standards that exist with Common Core are literacy standards and they do not call for the teaching of Islam. I did acknowledge that the focus on informational text is partly responsible for opening the door to new curriculum, etc.

      We both know that slapping “Common Core” on a textbook in some instances is nothing more than a marketing ploy.

      1. A ploy is very possible. Unfortunately this may be. But I believe in teaching Islam.

        1. You mean you believe in teaching about Islam and its role in history? Just like Christianity should be taught? That’s legitimate because how can you teach history without discussing the impact major world religions had on history and culture?

          Unfortunately, some of the curriculum being complained about goes beyond that as it deals with Islam and then Christianity, in the same curriculum, is marginalized.

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