High standards for our students? Count me in. My dad was not happy with straight A's. If my brother or I got a 95%, he wanted to know what happened on the other 5%.
Even so, allowing the federal government to dictate education to states and local government? No thanks.
OUR VIEW: Demonization threatens 'Common Core'
It is true, the Common Core standards did originally grow from states wanting to increase standards so our students can better compete with the rest of the world. Great idea. And Louisiana was in that group.
But a few things have happened along the way. First, the federal government became increasingly involved. Unless you are fighting a war, the kind that requires tanks, submarines and jets, you really don't want the federal government involved.
I'm from the school that believes education is a matter best left for local control. The notion of Washington determining curricula is something most states are simply not interested in. It's a non-starter.
As we have seen in Obamacare, President Obama's Washington believes it knows better than the peasants in the states. But centralized planning didn't work in Russia, it's not working with our health care system and it won't work in education.
It's true that Common Core never started out as a curriculum. It's even true that it still is not a curriculum. But just as certainly, if the feds dictate the standards of measure, the local curricula will have no choice but to follow. To succeed on Common Core tests, states will have to adopt curricula that teach to the tests. To think otherwise is folly.
Second, parents have spoken out. It has become fashionable in the news media to believe there is a right-wing conspiracy against Common Core. The folks who think that need to get out more. The rebellion against federal government mandated testing is widespread and is led by parents of all stripes and political persuasions.
If we get to the point where we are ignoring parents, we are making a big elitist mistake. I have news for Washington: We can have rigorous standards without giving control to the federal government. Parents deserve a voice in this debate.
Bobby Jindal, a Republican, is the governor of Louisiana.