Will Louisiana pull back from 'Common Core' standards?

Will Louisiana pull back on 'Common Core' standards?
(Source: MGN Online)
(Source: MGN Online)

CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) - There wasn't much of a fuss when Louisiana adopted Common Core education standards in 2010, but there's sure a fuss about it now.

Supporters say the new standards will bring our education level closer to the national average, but critics call it a federal takeover of our schools.

So, is Common Core here to stay? Or does the state legislature need to rethink the national curriculum?

It began as an idea to help students transition more easily if they moved states.

"I think when Common Core came out, it was just a generalized statement of what kids should be learning in a certain grade and across the nation, which isn't bad in itself," said Teri Johnson, president of the Calcasieu Federation of Teachers.

But with the new curriculum and new evaluations, some say it's just too much.

"You can't separate them right now and so it's kind of a convoluted mess," said Johnson.

And now, it has people wondering, should Louisiana continue under these standards?

"We need to take back what we teach our kids," said State Rep. Brett Geymann R-Moss Bluff. "We can set a bar of achievement that's just as high as anywhere else without adopting Common Core."

While Louisiana hasn't officially backed out of Common Core, some in the state have raised discussion.

"That's something we will bring to legislation this spring, how do we get out of Common Core and what do we replace it with?," said Geymann.

And what started as a curriculum that teaches more relevant ideas, now leaves some with second thoughts.

"It's not just federal anymore," said Johnson. "We now have private companies that sell worksheets and things for Common Core and so, it's a money-making business."

And some said the curriculum was meant to be simple, but it's making students and teachers jump through many hoops.

"It was supposed to be left up to the teachers in the district on how they implemented it and it was supposed to make life easier, but it just hasn't," said Johnson.

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