California is one of 45 states to adopt the controversial Common Core educational standards - but Wednesday, hundreds of concerned Californians rallied outside the state Capitol to protest the new requirements.
The protesters argue that the Common Core standards represent a federal takeover of what should be a state-run matter. They also say that implementing the standards will cost $1.6 billion, and they support a bill that would allow school districts to opt out of the standards. Three groups, Democrats Against Common Core, Californians United Against Common Core and Eagle Forum of California, organized the protest.
Protesters scheduled the rally for 10 a.m., just ahead of a hearing of the Education Committee at 1:30 p.m. "The bill would give local school districts the option to opt out of the Common Core Standards that are to be implemented by the 2014-15 school year," reports local station KCRA.
Echoing supporters across the nation, California State Superintendent of Public Education Tom Torlakson said, "Instead of the old bubble test, we're measuring critical thinking, problem solving, [and] good communication skills. It's heading in the right direction and then CA adopted its own reforms, the governor's local control funding formula, which invest more resources to the districts that need the help the most," said Torlakson.