At the GOP debate in Miami Thursday night, Donald Trump said Common Core is “education through Washington D.C.”
In this election season he isn’t the first to vilify the education standards that have been adopted by 42 states. Florida adopted Common Core standards in 2010 and then tweaked and renamed them the Florida State Standards in 2014 after public opposition.
Which brings us to Trump’s declaration that Washington and the federal government are behind the Common Core standards.
The fact-checking website PolitiFace that rates the accuracy of statement by politicians rated this one False.
In their analysis, the fact checkers go to the history of Common Core – state education officials who wanted to create standards that set the same academic goals for students across states — so teachers would aim to impart the same knowledge and skills to students in Florida as they would in California or Massachussetts. (Theirs has more detail.)
They also note that it’s been up to states to then adopt the standards.
When it comes to the feds, Politifact said:
Washington has done a bit to encourage states to adopt the standards. President Barack Obama’s signature education program, Race to the Top, gave states that have adopted a set of standards extra points (40 of a possible 500) when competing for grants.
But the federal government didn’t help create the standards, and has no control over how they’re implemented. Even states that have adopted the standards are still free to set their own curricula.
In short, it doesn’t matter who the president is because there’s not much the federal government can do about Common Core.