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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Stop Common Core bill gets Senate companion



from Tampa Bay Times education writer Jeffrey S. Solochek:

A week after the Florida Board of Education affirmed the state's commitment to the Common Core State Standards, a state senator has submitted legislation aiming to stop the standards from taking effect.

Sen. Greg Evers, R-Pensacola, filed a bill (SB 1316) that's identical to a measure proposed by Rep. Debbie Mayfield in the House. Mayfield's HB 25 has picked up four of the House's most conservative members as co-sponsors, but has not made any headway during committee weeks despite being assigned to three committees.

Senate leaders have shown even less interest in stopping the Common Core -- now referred to as the Florida Standards after a handful of small changes -- than their counterparts in the House. Senate President Don Gaetz has made clear he doesn't see the standards as a federal conspiracy, and he's had his education chairman make clear that the Senate wants to hear of specific concerns, not overarching accusations or complaints.

Both bills seek to prevent implementation of the Common Core until several public hearings can take place and a financial impact analysis is completed. The state education department recently held several public hearings before adopting the revised standards.

Laura Zorc, co-founder of Florida Parents Against Common Core, said she expects some resistence from the House and Senate education committees.

But she warned lawmakers that she and other Common Core critics were not going away.

"As a mother of four, I personally am not budging on my determination to protect my children's education," she said. "I see Common Core as a threat to their future livelihood based on a flawed set of standards and unrealistic testing demands."

[Last modified: Thursday, February 27, 2014 9:28am]


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