by B. Christopher Agee, Western Journalism
The federal education program known as Common Core has been pilloried by students and parents across the nation for its convoluted teaching methods and allegations of a leftist — or even anti-American — bias. Those most keenly aware of the curriculum and its effect on students, however, are reportedly being prohibited from speaking out against it under threat of disciplinary action.
A number of educators in Louisiana’s Rapides Parish school district, for example, recently complained about the stress of keeping up with new demands. At least one teacher said that she received a written notice after daring to express her disapproval of Common Core via a social media post.
“We are not to voice our opinions in any public forum,” she explained, adding administrators expect teachers to “be neutral or in favor of” the federal program.
“This is a hot national debate,” the frustrated teacher continued. “Why can’t I comment? I did not say a word about anything locally.”
The parish just happens to be within a state whose governor is a vocal opponent of the Common Core program. Bobby Jindal weighed in on the alleged retaliation against educators who voice opposition to the increasingly unpopular initiative.
“This is outrageous,” he said. “Teachers are now being chastised for speaking out against Common Core. Teachers have problems with Common Core — and we should be listening to them.”
As more and more states drop the intrusive curriculum in favor of education plans developed at the state and local levels, Jindal is taking an active role in overcoming the program’s formidable influence.
This summer, the Republican governor filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration claiming the Department of Education is in violation of the Tenth Amendment by coercing states to adopt the Common Core curriculum.
“The proponents of Common Core will tell you that it’s simply about one test and about standards,” Jindal said at the time, “but that’s a ruse. Common Core is about controlling curriculum…. These are big government elitists that believe they know better than parents and local school boards.”
© 2014 Western Journalism