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Home-school parents question Common Core reach

By Mary Richards | Posted - Sep 11th, 2013 @ 10:42am



SALT LAKE CITY — Some home-schooling parents are growing concerned about something they thought they left behind in public school - the Common Core state standards. These state standards in public schools are now reaching into home-school as well.

Advocates say the common core state standards emphasize problem solving and critical thinking. Heber resident, former school teacher, and current home-schooler Christel Swasey doesn't think so.

"The Common Core is an experiment on children, and most people don't appreciate their children being used as guinea pigs in the educational system," Swasey said.


"The Common Core is an experiment on children, and most people don't appreciate their children being used as guinea pigs in the educational system." Christel Swasey

She home-schools her son and says in the future any test he will take for college — like AP exams, the GED, ACT or SAT — will be taken over by the Common Core architects. She says it's overreach and takes away local control.

Swasey says she started home-schooling because her son was bored and she opposed the Common Core standards for schools. But now she says those standards are encroaching on home-schoolers.

"David Coleman, who is the lead architect of the Common Core standards, is now the president of the college board," Swasey said. "So he has been altering the time-tested college entrance exams."

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Advocates say the SAT, ACT, AP and GED exams have to change to reflect things like the Common Core's new emphasis on non-fiction and instructional texts, and problem-solving emphasis in math. But Swasey says it's an overreach of government that takes away parents' choice.

A recent poll showed most Americans have not heard of the Common Core state standards in schools but they are gaining some opposition from home-school parents now. The tests Swasey's son will eventually take are growing to reflect those standards.

"The time-tested classic college entrance exams... virtually every test in America has fallen victim to this monopoly on thought that's called the Common Core," Swasey said.

Swasey says the Common Core came out of too much government involvement and are an experiment on children. But advocates say the new standards emphasize critical thinking and problem solving.

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