Proponents of Common Core claim that its focus is solely on standards and that it is not a federal takeover of education will have a difficult time standing by that claim with this recent controversial lesson from an elementary school in Florida.
Under the Obama presidency, we have witnessed accusations of racism stated over and over again. Michelle Obama even recently made the wild claim that museums are only for white people. Likewise, under the Obama presidency and progressive push for Common Core, we have had numerous reports of Common Core lessons focused not on standards, but rather on teaching children that America is a racist nation.
The Blaze reports on such a lesson being taught to fourth-graders at Newbury Elementary in north-central Florida. As part of a cause-and-effect lesson, fourth-graders were taught that predominantly white schools are given new textbooks while predominantly black schools have to settle for old, worn-out books.
One day some time ago, a boy named Jack was doing his homework. His mother began to examine Jack’s textbook. A puzzled look clouded her face. She noticed that the book was worn and missing a dozen pages.
The next day, she told the school’s principal that Jack deserved better materials. He agreed, but said that only schools in white districts got new texts. Schools in African American areas got old, damaged books.
So Jack’s mother met with a lawyer. They filed a legal case, claiming unequal and unfair treatment toward Jack. A judge decided that Jack’s mother was right. The board of education agreed to revise the system for providing materials to schools in the district.
An outraged father, Tim Marden, spoke with The Blaze about what he believes is a highly inappropriate lesson.
While Marden stated that he has no problem with his child learning about racism, this lesson was not the way to do so. He said, “It’s just a made-up story, it lacks concrete, fact-based information. We have so much history, why not use it?”
His son’s teacher agreed that the lesson was both troubling and “developmentally inappropriate.”
The school is located in the Alachua County Public Schools and the district’s spokesperson, Jackie Johnson, admitted that the lesson was part of Florida’s standards, which are based upon Common Core. She said, “the goal of the unit is for students to understand that the right of equal opportunity is or was protected by the Civil Rights Act, integration and changing laws; Martin Luther King Jr.; [and] the U.S. Constitution.”
Johnson added, “Any parent, student or staff member who objects to an instructional material may also request that the material be re-evaluated at the school level, then at the district level.”