Loading

66°F

60°F

69°F

63°F

66°F

68°F

69°F

66°F

66°F

64°F

66°F

69°F
Search
NEWS STORIES

Proposed committee could politicize education standards writing process, replace Common Core Submitted: 02/19/2014

Adam Fox
10 p.m. Anchor/Reporter
afox@wjfw.com


MADISON - Some Wisconsin legislators believe education standards should get a fresh look and make changes every six years.

Authors of a state education proposal want to form a committee to do that.

The Republican backed bill would give the governor, the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) and the heads of both parties in the legislature the power to pick the 15 member committee.

Republican Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt sits on the Assembly Committee on Education and sponsors the bill, AB 617.

He says the selected members would need to be teachers, parents, board members and other education experts. He says the governor would pick six members, DPI would select 5 members, then the majority and minority leaders of the Assembly and Senate would each select a member to round out the 15 person committee.

Thiesfeldt says the committee isn't being proposed as a Republican power grab in education.

"This isn't built just to fit just this time in space," Thiesfeldt said. "This is built looking out to the future too, you know because we're not going to have Republicans in control forever."

But the bill will give the sitting governor's party the power to appoint the majority of the members on the committee. The six selections from the governor's office, plus the two selections from the legislature would make a majority on the 15 member committee.

That's something that worries Democratic Rep. Mandy Wright. She also sits on the Assembly Committee on Education, and worries the proposal is politicizing the standards writing process.

"It's a big reason I ran for office is to make sure that we don't really politicize education, and that we leave it in the hands of the experts," Wright said. "And I am concerned this goes too far in making our standards politicized."

The committee's standards would also replace the state's current Common Core standards. Wisconsin adopted those standards in 2010 for both math and English. More than 45 states have adopted some part of the standards across the country.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Instruction, Common Core provides guidance and support, while still maintaining the local control so important to districts throughout the state. It also helped standardize curriculum.

Wright was a teacher before being elected to the Assembly in 2012. She has experience teaching the Common Core standards.

"I don't think it's perfect," Wright said. "I do think there is room for improvement overall and I see that there was a need for standardization of our curriculum and I think Common Core takes us in the right direction."

State Superintendent Tony Evers agrees. He called the proposed bill "wholly unacceptable" this week.

He said Wednesday in a YouTube post that the standards change would be a step backwards for Wisconsin.

"We're going to be a national embarrassment, for what we are doing in public education, we can't afford that, our economy can't afford that," Evers said.

But Thiesfeldt believes a move away from Common Core and the formation of the committee would be the right move for Wisconsin.

"It's a much more open process than we've had in the past and certainly much more open process that we used to implement common core standards," Thiesfeldt said.

The Assembly Committee on Education will vote on the proposal Thursday.







Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

RHINELANDER - Losing power when severe weather hits causes big problems for some people in the Northwoods. It's something that Wisconsin Public Service wants to work on.

Two and a half years ago, WPS began identifying power-outage problem areas throughout the Northwoods. Last summer they began work on the System Modernization Reliability Project, a five-year initiative to bury roughly 1,000 miles of overhead power lines.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Hundreds of unique cars will line the streets of downtown Rhinelander soon for the Second Saturday in June car show.

The show's organizers say the event has grown every year. This year, they've added more trophy classes, allowing contestants to compete in more unique categories.

Organizers expect a lot of people to come and look at the cars.

+ Read More

MADISON - Wisconsin may be the first state in the country to certify teachers who don't have bachelor's degrees under a provision put in the state budget last week.

+ Read More

MERRILL - A Rhinelander man went to the hospital after his motorcycle hit a deer near Merrill Wednesday night.

Lincoln County deputies tell us a call came in just before nine Wednesday night.

The caller did not provide the exact location of the accident but believed they were on State Highway 107.

+ Read More

MADISON - A new analysis by the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau says a Republican-approved expansion of the private-school voucher program could cost up to $800 million over the next decade.

+ Read More

Play Video

MINOCQUA - The Northwoods Wildlife Center will see a lot of orphaned wildlife this spring, and the center could use your help preparing for the babies.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Tree research in Rhinelander may help improve ground pollution around the world. Scientists at the U.S. Forest Service Northern Research Station want to use trees to clean the soil using a process called phytoremediation.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here