New bill could help states more easily decline Common Core standards

Kelsey Harkness --- The Daily Signal 

Sen. David Vitter, R-La., has drafted legislation to prohibit the federal government from “mandating, incentivizing or coercing” states to adopt the national education standards known as Common Core, The Daily Signal has learned.

The intent of Vitter’s bill is to enable states to more easily exit the national standards, which more and more parents and educators have come to oppose, by voiding requirements attached to previously issued waivers from federal law.

States likely could retain their waivers from the law, called No Child Left Behind, even if they chose to pull out of Common Core.

Opponents have criticized the Obama administration for “incentivizing” states to sign on to the Common Core standards by offering $4.35 billion in grants and waivers under its “Race to the Top” program.

Of his bill, Vitter, a former supporter of Common Core, told The Daily Signal:

I’ve fought tooth and nail for local control of education and against the enormous growth of federal power under President Obama. That includes prohibiting the federal government from mandating, coercing or bribing states to adopt Common Core or its equivalent.

Vitter quietly filed his legislation, the Local Control of Education Act, as a standalone bill last week but intends to propose it as an amendment to the spending bill that Congress must pass this week.

The bill aims to “prohibit the federal government from mandating, incentivizing or coercing states to adopt the Common Core state standards or any other specific academic standards, instructional content, curricula, assessments, or programs of instruction.”

Click here to read more.