If you’re one of the millions of Americans keeping tabs on how the national Common Core education standards are affecting students in America’s schools, you’d better be careful where you get your news. That’s because some of the Nation’s leading education reporting is funded by major supporters of Common Core.
NBC recently produced a report titled “Meet America’s Most Hardcore Anti-Common Core Moms” which portrays opposition to Common Core as a sentiment based largely on far-right ideological positions.
From the report which can be read in full here:
For the mostly female, mostly older, all-white crowd, Common Core is more than an attack on states’ rights; it’s an affront to Christian, conservative values. These mothers and grandmothers see a campaign against Common Core as an extension of protecting the nuclear family. Eagle Forum, anti-feminist activist Phyllis Schlafly’s national organization, is a sponsor of the conference. In the foyer outside, booths proffer fliers about What You Need to Know About Marriage and How to Speak Up for Life.
Describing some of the objections voiced at a recent anti-Common Core rally, the story continues:
[O]bjections to Common Core go beyond the idea of a top-down intrusion. A chart folded into the conference packets contrasted “traditional classical learning” with CSCOPE and Common Core’s “radical social justice agenda”: teachers are “facilitators” rather “authority figures,” the lessons focus on “subjectivity, feelings, emotions, beliefs” rather than the “Declaration of Independence, Bill of Rights, Constitution…phonics…Drill and Skill.” (Unlike Common Core, CSCOPE sets standards for social studies and science, too.)
While the NBC report isn’t clearly for or against Common Core, it certainly does well to portray Americans who oppose the standards as being on the fringes of American society. A notion that many political candidates running in local, State and national races—hearing voters’ concerns about the education standards often— would certainly be forced to deny.
But there is a clear reason why NBC’s education reporters would have a clear interest in protecting Common Core as the norm. In fact, it’s printed right at the end of the aforementioned article:
Education coverage for NBCNews.com is supported by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. NBC News retains sole editorial control over the content of this coverage.
Perhaps NBC retains “sole editorial control” over the coverage which Bill Gates helps to fund, but those interested in learning more about the education standards would be remiss to ignore where Gates falls on the issue if they are to rely on NBC’s reporting.
Via a Washington Post report last month:
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation didn’t just bankroll the development of what became known as the Common Core State Standards. With more than $200 million, the foundation also built political support across the country, persuading state governments to make systemic and costly changes.
Bill Gates was de facto organizer, providing the money and structure for states to work together on common standards in a way that avoided the usual collision between states’ rights and national interests that had undercut every previous effort, dating from the Eisenhower administration.