Educators protest new guidelines at State House

OKLAHOMA CITY – Some educators in Oklahoma protest new student performance guidelines.

A group opposed to public education standards known as Common Core rallied at the statehouse hoping to overturn those guidelines.

Common Core is a new set of standards to measure student performance in math and English across all of Oklahoma.

“Many people I think thought this was going to be a great idea,” Jenni White said. “Yes we need accountability but what happens is you can micromanage education out of existence and that’s what we’ve done.”

White, with a group called Restore Oklahoma Public Education, helped put on the protest

Opponents believe Common Core will cost millions to implement with no clear source of funding.

“We would prefer local control of education,” White said. “We shouldn’t be putting anything into law without a rigorous examination and cost analysis of some kind.”

Some lawmakers at the rally also argue local control is a better way to measure student performance.

“I’m concerned with more federal intrusion into our school districts,” state Rep. David Brumbaugh of Broken Arrow said. “I believe local control is the answer.”

On the other hand, the state superintendent’s office strongly supports the new guidelines.

They said Common Core will mean fewer hurdles for teachers to jump, albeit each hurdle will be higher.

“The difference with Common Core, there will be fewer standards, but it’ll require them to get in depth with each of those standards,” state superintendent chief of staff Joel Robison said.

The state has been ramping up for Common Core since 2010, but only recently have educators got a good look at what the new standards will mean for them.

The changes will not be fully implemented until 2014 and 2015.