Anybody watching the escalating battle across the country over the Common Core State Standards and aligned standardized testing will hardly be surprised by a new national poll which reveals a significant loss of support over the last year — especially among teachers, whose approval rating dropped from 76 percent in 2013 to only 46 percent in 2014. Overall support for the Core dropped from 65 percent last year to 53 percent in 2014, with most of the defection among Republicans.
The annual poll was conducted by the pro-school-reform journal Education Next and asked a nationally representative sample of Americans about a variety of education issues, with the results on the Common Core being the most dramatic. Here are some of the results:
*Support for the Core dropped from 65 percent in 2013 to 53 percent across the general population. When asked about the notion of common national education standards without mentioning the Common Core, support was at 68 percent.
*Along with the 30-percentage point drop in approval by teachers, there was a huge jump in opposition, from 12 percent to 40 percent.
*Support among Republicans has dropped from 57 percent in 2013 to 43 percent this year, while Democratic support has barely changed, from 64 percent to 63 percent in 2014.
Important thing to note here - this poll comes from an education reform-friendly organization, so the questions are framed in a reform-friendly way.
For example, this one:
U.S. students regularly participate in international achievement tests. In your opinion, how important is it for America’s future prosperity that our country performs well on these tests compared to other countries?
This question comes early in the poll, along with a bunch of other questions meant to convince poll-takers that the American public education system is a mess.
Here's some more:
In your opinion, how important is the academic performance of high school students for America’s future prosperity?
A 2012 government survey ranked the math skills of 15-year olds in 34 industrialized countries. With 1 being the best and 34 meaning the worst, what is your best guess of where American 15-year olds ranked on this test?
Students in different parts of the country perform differently in math.The average student in your district performs better than what percent of students across the country?
See what they're doing there?
The poll is designed to heighten the awareness of the respondents to the "education crisis" in the country and steer them toward "national standards" as the answer for the problem.
And even with that kind of reformy-friendly framing, the Common Core dropped from 65% to 53% with the general public and 76% to 46% with teachers.
Showing you just how toxic "Common Core" has become as a brand, 68% of the respondents support "national standards" (with the numbers perhaps jazzed a bit due to the leading questions early on about national standing on international tests and the like.)
In any case, if it wasn't already obvious that Common Core is going the way of the Betamax before you saw these poll results, you ought to see it now.
We are seeing a drop in support for CCSS in poll after poll - the Rasmussen poll, the Siena poll in NY, a poll in California and now a reformy-friendly poll from Education Next.
And the most interesting thing to me is, the more people come in contact with Common Core, the less popular it gets.
Take Rasmussen for instance, which found this in November 2013:
Forty-five states have adopted new national education standards known as Common Core, and nearly half of Americans think that's a good idea. But fewer adults are confident that the new standards will improve student achievement.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 49% of American Adults favor requiring all schools nationwide to meet the same Common Core education standards. Twenty-eight percent (28%) are opposed, while nearly as many (23%) are not sure.
In June 2014, Rasmussen found this:
Support for Common Core among Americans with school-age children has fallen dramatically, as more now question whether the new national education standards will actually improve student performance.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 34% of American Adults with children of elementary or secondary school age now favor requiring all schools nationwide to meet the same Common Core education standards. That’s an 18-point drop from 52% in early November of last year. Forty-seven percent (47%) oppose the imposition of the national standards, compared to 32% in the previous survey. Little changed are the 19% who are undecided.
When Common Core was still this hazy thing off in the distance, people (including teachers) supported it in polls - kinda like how 68% support "national standards" in this Education Next poll.
But as Common Core gets implemented, as the Common Core tests come around, as teacher evaluations based on Common Core tests start rolling out, you see the support for CCSS dropping by the month.
Hell, in just seven months, Rasmussen found an 18 percentage point drop in Core support and a 15 percentage point increase in opposition to the Core from parents of school-age children.
That trajectory - a continued loss of support for the Core - has been clear for the last year or so and I think no matter what education reformers do to try and save the Core by rebranding it or getting more "emotional" in their support (and propaganda) for the Core, the Core is dying and soon to be dead.
Even their own polls show it.