Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Monday, January 20, 2014

NYSED Commissioner King: Opponents To Common Core Are Opposed To MLK's Dream

You knew someone prominent in the corporate education reform movement would trot out the "If Dr. King were alive today, he would be a huge proponent of the Common Core State Standards to drive racial and economic justice..." meme.

That prominent someone was NYSED Commissioner John King.

The underlying theme to his piece is that the Common Core will help bring about Dr. King's dream of racial and economic justice and if you're opposed to the Common Core you're opposed to Dr. King's dream.

See, he says it right here:

The Common Core offers a path to the precise reading, writing and thinking skills that will help propel their children and children across the state to success. Yet some now want us to delay, or even abandon, our efforts to raise standards.

I say no. As King said in that speech a little more than fifty years ago, “We do not have as much time as the cautious and the patient try to give us.”

Many people have noted that the Common Core are dumbed-down standards in math
and English Language Arts and are an attempt by a corporate elite to strip children of critical thinking and love of reading by imposing rote skills and drills learning.

Dr. King (Little Johnny, not Martin Luther Jr.) doesn't address any of the Common Core criticism, just sets up the straw man argument that the CCSS are rigorous and will lead to more students being "college-and career- ready," wraps the whole thing in a civil rights veneer and leaves the reader with the idea that anybody opposed to the Common Core is opposed to economic and racial equality and justice.

His argument is not going to convince anybody who already doesn't believe the same reform meme that he does, and it certainly isn't going to stop the growing rebellion against Common Core, high stakes testing and other reforms that the NYSED and Regents are pushing.

The civil right cliches the reformers trot out have grown stale and past their shelf life.

They might still work for the people who are already on board the ed deform express, but they are less and less effective on everybody else.


  1. By virtue of sharing the same name and race, John King apparently equates his egoistic ambitions and with the passion and vision of Martin Luther King. In truth the two men are polar opposites.

    1. And yet Dr. King likes to call himself by the same name as the other Dr. King.

  2. I believe he needs a history lesson.

  3. Linking CCSS to Civil Rights is a cruel joke. Shame on John King.