Petrilli Predicts a Common Core Rebrand in Missouri

Mike Petrilli

Fordham Institute released a statement from Mike Petrilli, who is their executive vice president and they call “one of the nation’s most trusted education analysts” (according to Fordham & Bill Gates), spinning yesterday’s Common Core vote from the Missouri Legislature:

The Missouri state legislature reached a compromise to move forward with the implementation of Common Core Standards while continuing to determine their own state-specific program. Their vote illustrates that states are, in fact, in charge of standards, and maintains Missouri’s commitment to raising the bar. As a graduate of Missouri’s public schools, I hope that the state’s lawmakers don’t let politics complicate learning in the classroom. In the end, I suspect that any ‘college and career ready’ standards adopted by Missouri will be quite similar to the Common Core, and at least as rigorous. Children in the Show-Me State deserve nothing less.”

First, Petrilli seems to insinuate that opponents said that states could not vote themselves out of the Common Core.  They can (and should and quickly too!).  Second the plan is to replace the standards, there was no plan to determine their own state-specific program until the Missouri Legislature weighed in.  This is a loss for Common Core advocates, plain and simple.  The compromise was in place in an attempt to secure Governor Nixon’s signature.  Should he veto this bill he could very well end up with an override of this bill or one that is even stronger.  The Missouri Legislature has already voted to override 13 vetoes by Nixon this term.

Third, as far as a rebrand goes, that is a potential concern and one we will be watching.  Anne Gassel of the Missouri Coalition Against Common Core said in a released statement, “We would have liked the language to be a lot stronger in terms of rejecting the Common Core State Standards. We will have to rely on the professional integrity of those selected to be on the various work groups to really focus on what is best for our students and teachers and not be swayed by outside political or financial interests.”