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Common Core is common sense



Common Core fundamentally is akin to making a standard requirement that all children learn their multiplication tables by a certain age. It’s just that simple. Mr. Bargenquast’s anti-Common Core opinion piece (“Rational education is the right education,” Aug. 13) has several items with which I whole-heartedly agree:

1) The values of “hard work, respect, excellence and patriotism” should be inculcated in our students; 

2) Assuming the statistic he cites is accurate (only two of 20 Santa Maria high school administrators “have ever worked in the classroom”), it is undesirable.

It would be better if administrators were required to have a minimum number of years of actual classroom teaching experience. Just like I believe it preferable for anyone teaching surgery or flying to have a minimum number of years doing actual surgery under experienced supervision or flying an airplane a minimum number of hours prior to administering either a surgery program or an aviation program.

However, the remainder of his argumentation is full of ideological assumptions and short on factual and rational documentation. It is a moral and ethical accusation: He claims that a godless immorality is the independent variable that has caused an educational and intellectual decline. It is a thinly disguised mix of “states’ rights,” anti-immigration, anti-environmentalism, anti-Obama, and free-marketing ideology with a chunk of the kitchen-sink thrown in for good measure: A godless cabal of central government bureaucrats have caused the USA to go “to hell in a hand basket,” as the old saying puts it.

This is a faith-based ideology, which is anti-rational but widely preached among Mr. Bargenquast’s partisans. It is full of un-falsifiable hypotheses and assertions, and no amount of empirical evidence can possibly succeed in convincing its believers otherwise.

Additionally, he has an old-fashioned conflict of interest. His solution is that more taxpayer money be paid to Montessori schools, in which he had (has) a proprietary interest.

-- Don Casebolt - Santa Maria

-- Don Casebolt - Santa Maria

-- Don Casebolt - Santa Maria

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