Guest Opinion: Harley Brown on Idaho's Common Core Standards


March 22, 2014 

My considered opinion is in Three Parts to wit:

PART ONE - I AM a Tenth Amendment man to the "CORE." The PRINCIPLE of Common Core is SPLENDID INDEED! It is my understanding that 45 SOVEREIGN states have VOLUNTARILY come together and have agreed to adopt common academic standards for English and Math students. The leaders in the U.S. government are no smarter than the leaders at the state level.

PART TWO I concur with the implementation plan Plan of Attack: 2011 Adopt the Plan; School Year 2013/14 - First year of ACTUAL operations of Common Core in schools: 2014/15 - Assessment of standards - to use as a basis upon which to modify, improve, "tweak", etc., i.e., "Take the Best & leave the Rest." I believe funding the Common Core experiment is Idaho State money well spent (roughly $11 million to date on Common Core & professional development).

PART THREE: Observations and remarks from a three-months-shy-of-60-year-old grandfather:

1. I ask you: how much math does the garden variety person really need? I earned my engineering degree from the University of Connecticut (class of '76) and they loaded me to the gills with MATH GALORE: ( At the time I thought I would need all this stuff one day so I studied really hard. To date I have never (outside of school that is) EVER used "Advanced Calculus for Engineers," "Linear Algebra," or "Quantum Mechanics" or lots more math and only rarely have I ever had the occasion to use basic Algebra and a little Geometry and Trigonometry.

2. English is where it's at! - It is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT to Learn how to write well; "Leaders are Readers," develop a powerful vocabulary.

Other IMPORTANT classes I would recommend to all students: (Personal) FINANCIAL EDUCATION, The U.S. Constitution, U.S. History, and How to extract all your Blessings From the Bible.

PARTING SHOT The U.S. Department of Education in conjunction with many additional Federal Agencies ought to be expunged from existence by WE THE PEOPLE being a vile DOMESTIC ENEMY to the United States Constitution.

While researching this topic I encountered ZERO resistance and FULL COOPERATION from the Idaho Department of Education's wonderful staff & personnel unlike the dark, mysterious, paranoid evil empire known as the IDAHO DEPARTMENT OF W-EALTH AND HELL-fare.

Brown lives in Nampa.

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