Each day I open links to articles about a growing movement to do away with Common Core, APPR, TFA, Standardized Testing and the privatizing of education. I know and have worked with so many of the groups and individuals pushing for the removal of top down corporate education reform, what I called Profit Led Fed Ed.
Jonathan Kozol, Deborah Meier, Mark Naison are but some of the individuals. The Bad Ass Teachers (BATS) and its affiliates, Save Our Schools (SOS) and its affiliates, New York Collective of Radical Educators (NyCORE), United Opt Out, and its affiliates, New York State Allies for Public Education (NYSAPE) and so many other groups have joined together to fight NCLB, RTTT, and their outcomes. One thing they have in common…progressive child and community centered education. Without going out a limb, I would feel safe to say many are Democrats or progressives.
However when I read about the political leaders are in this endeavor I am usually stunned. Rand Paul and Scott Walker have now joined the anti Common Core fight. They now join the likes of conservatives like Lindsay Graham, Charles Grassley, and Mark Rubio. The Republican National Committee, Glen Beck, and even the Heritage Foundation are all in this fight. The states who have dropped or propose dropping out of Common Core and testing like Oklahoma, South and North Carolina, Georgia, and Louisiana are all Republican and mostly conservative.
The state leading the Common Core APPR charge is New York; with its high profile Democratic Governor, Andrew Cuomo. The biggest “pusher” of the Common Core et al drugs is our federal Democratic DOE under the control of a “liberal” Democratic president.
When did this happen? When did progressive education become a reason to vote for a conservative Republican? What do progressive educators do when it is time to vote?
If they are one-issue voters do they vote for a Walker or Paul, or in NYS did they vote for conservative republican Astorino? Maybe they get lucky and have alternative candidates like Zephyr Teachout or Howie Hawkins and lose? If they have concerns about other progressive ideals like gun control and women’s rights do they turn their backs on education?
Obviously this is a very complex issue. I was determined to keep this comment short.
Free speech has become a corporate battle cry. States Rights now include education as well as anti voting rights procedures.
Red is Blue. Blue is Red. Have I gone down Wonderland’s Rabbit Hole? What a conundrum!