“Don’t Be Cattle! Fight Common Core!” is a newly formed group that began after the arrest of Robert Small for asking a question out of turn at an MSDE forum on Common Core. In just one week, the group has amassed a Facebook following of more than 3,500 members and growing.
“Many parents in attendance at the school board meeting on Sept. 19 were growing increasingly frustrated by the screening and rewording of the questions which were required to be submitted in writing. At no time in the ‘forum’ were parents allowed to ask direct questions, followup, or clarifications,” said group founder Ann Miller, whose YouTube video of the incident garnered national attention and has received a million hits.
The MSDE adopted Common Core in June of 2010 in exchange for a quarter billion dollars in federal incentive funding through a Race To The Top grant which was conditioned upon adherence to Common Core. In all that time, when the MSDE could have been asking for public input and educating parents on the standards, instead there was an information blackout. The public is only just now, upon its implementation and after the expenditure of untold taxpayer dollars, even learning about the new overhaul to our education system.
Instead of putting out propaganda videos that avoid direct questions, “Don’t Be Cattle!” calls upon Superintendent Lowery to finally answer direct questions from parents, teachers and the public - openly and honestly without editing.
The list of questions below was compiled by parents who attended the meeting in Towson and feel their questions were never addressed. They are only a few out of many unanswered questions.
The group is also requesting the protocol of the Q&A portion of the meeting be changed to open mic, rather than written questions.
The final MSDE Common Core forum is on Tuesday, Oct. 1 at 7pm at Charles Herbert Flowers High School in Prince George's County.
A Sampling of Parents’ Unanswered Questions on Common Core
All of the academics on the validation committee for Common Core refused to sign off on it. What evidence do you have that Common Core will even be effective in improving education?
How is selling out our local education system to national standards in the best interest of our children?
Why are we going backwards in adopting a one-size-fits-all set of standards? What about special needs and GT children?
Why are we adopting Common Core when testing standards have not rolled out yet?
What are the costs to the state of implementing Common Core?
How will MSDE prevent data collection from being shared with outside entities in light of the NSA and IRS scandals?
With nearly 35% of the States that adopted Common Core making motions toward rejecting the standards, is it wise to gamble with the future of Maryland’s children's education by moving so swiftly to implement Common Core?
If Maryland schools were ranked number one in the nation, why are we spending millions to abandon what was working?
Can parents view what data is being collected on their children? How can parents opt out?
What is the policy when parents refuse to allow their children to be subject to Common Core testing as permitted by law?
The push to align the SAT and other tests to Common Core standards will affect even private schools and home schoolers. How does this contribute to school choice?
What guarantees do parents have that the requirements for further grants will not become increasingly over-reaching each and every year?