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Wisconsin 9/12 Project and Other Grassroots Represented at Joint Hearing on Common Core
Written by Kirsten   
Tuesday, 08 October 2013 17:49

On October 3rd, I was privileged to represent the Wisconsin 9/12 Project in speaking against Common Core State Standards at the first of a series of hearings on this crucial education matter. It was an honor to stand alongside so many other grassroots and organizational leaders and concerned citizens from across the state who articulately expressed concerns about these controversial standards and want to see Wisconsin take a better path.

A written version of the testimony offered on behalf of the Wisconsin 9/12 Project is now available online here

We had our work cut out for us at the Madison hearing. A parade of administrators whose talking points sounded strikingly familiar, all came out in favor of Common Core. But some amazing things happened that benefited our cause. First, State Superintendent of Education Tony Evers made some profound missteps in his testimony. In addition, some important facts were uncovered in the questioning of many of the administrators...things they may not even have realized established arguments against continuing forward with Common Core.

A videorecording of the entire eight-hour hearing before the Joint Select Committee for Review of the Common Core Standards Initiative, is available for viewing on WisconsinEye. Of special note:

  • Julaine Appling, Wisconsin Family Action (around the 1:24 mark)
  • Mary Black, Freedom Project Education (around the 2:32 mark)
  • Jeffrey Horn, Prairie Patriots (around the 2:57 mark)
  • Kirsten Lombard, The Wisconsin 9/12 Project (around the 5:51 mark)
  • Michael Glowacki, Madison-area citizen (just before the 7:36 mark)
  • Edy, McFarland teacher (around the 7:40 mark)
  • Jody, Appleton-area citizen (around the 7:47 mark)

Additional hearings are scheduled around the state, as follows: 

  • October 16th - Fond du Lac, City-County Building, 2 - 8 pm
  • October 23rd - Eau Claire, Chippewa Valley Technical College, 2 - 8 pm
  • October 30th - Wausau, Northcentral Technical College, 2- 8 pm

Please try to make it to one or all of these and bring as many likeminded people with you as you can.

If possible, prepare a concise statement (3-4 minutes) to share with the committee. Your statement should be focused and logical, and it should supply documentation/citations wherever possible. Please avoid broad, sweeping generalizations. BE SPECIFIC! You don't need to prove every aspect of Common Core wrong in 3 minutes. You just need to be able to weaken and undermine it with focused, factual, and logical arguments. Decide what you want to talk about, and dig in.  Also, it's best if you can bring copies of your testimony for the members of the committee, or at least email it to Senator Farrow's office. The more public testimony we have against the standards, the higher the physical pile of testimony objecting to this initiative, the better. Registering against the standards is great, but it's even better if you speak.

Great areas to cover might be: costs; how much of those costs the local district will have to pick up; the relationship between standards, curricula, and assessments (why Common Core is not "just standards"); the requirements of data collection through the SmarterBalanced assessments; data sharing with anyone who claims to need the data; the standards' lack of academic rigor; etc.

We look forward to seeing you at the next hearing in Fond du Lac!