Tag Archives: education

Former U.S. Secretary of Education William Bennett explains Common Core

Common CoreBy Lynn R. Mitchell

In the midst of the contentious debate over the Common Core State Standards, many critics have lost perspective on its purpose.

Why did so many governors, educators and policymakers across both parties join together to create the standards in the first place? A brief look at Common Core’s history would help explain its significance and counter some of the criticisms.

In 1983, then Secretary of Education Terrel Bell commissioned the seminal report, “A Nation at Risk,” which highlighted American students’ falling SAT scores and awakened the nation to its educational malaise. Among many of the report’s recommendations, which eventually became a platform for modern education reforms, were calls for “more rigorous and measurable standards.” American students were victims of low expectations and inconsistent learning goals.

William Bennett explains Common Core in an op-ed that lays out the what and why of this misunderstood educational tool (see Common Core has no better alternative). He further explains that not much has changed since 1983 despite billions of dollars spent on education and adds, “Thanks to benchmarked national and international exams, like the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) or Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), we know that American students continue to fall short.”

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Staunton: Presidents’ Day at Woodrow Wilson Library & Museum … free admission for children

Woodrow Wilson Presidential LibraryBy Lynn R. Mitchell

Celebrate Presidents’ Day at the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum.

Children and students accompanied by an adult will be admitted free this Presidents’ Day, Monday, February 16, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Guests will receive a guided tour of Wilson’s birthplace, the Presbyterian Manse, the home provided by the church for the Reverend Joseph Ruggles Wilson and his family.

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Rob Bell’s ‘Tebow Bill’ goes to Senate committee Thursday

Rob Bell 3

Del. Rob Bell

By Lynn R. Mitchell

After passing the House, Delegate Rob Bell’s “Tebow Bill” will be heard in committee this week. From Del. Bell:

We just received word that the Tebow Bill will be before the Senate Education and Health Committee this Thursday, February 12th! The committee meets at 8:30am in Senate Room B in the General Assembly Building.  You can find information about directions and parking here.

I hope you can come — it would help to have a big crowd!  We will want to have homeschoolers who can testify, and everyone else can provide moral support.

I strongly encourage you to contact your senator and express your support–especially if he or she serves on the Senate Education and Health Committee.  You can find a list of the committee membership here.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask. Hope to see you on Thursday!

Back story:

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Rob Bell’s ‘Tebow Bill’ passed in House of Delegates, 57-41

Rob Bell 3By Lynn R. Mitchell

Delegate Rob Bell (R-58 Charlottesville) saw his House Bill 1626, also known as the “Tebow Bill,” passed the Virginia House of Delegates on Thursday by a vote of 57-41. That’s good news, but previous bills have made it this far only to die in the State Senate.

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William Bennett explains Common Core

Common CoreBy Lynn R. Mitchell

In the midst of the contentious debate over the Common Core State Standards, many critics have lost perspective on its purpose.

Why did so many governors, educators and policymakers across both parties join together to create the standards in the first place? A brief look at Common Core’s history would help explain its significance and counter some of the criticisms.

In 1983, then Secretary of Education Terrel Bell commissioned the seminal report, “A Nation at Risk,” which highlighted American students’ falling SAT scores and awakened the nation to its educational malaise. Among many of the report’s recommendations, which eventually became a platform for modern education reforms, were calls for “more rigorous and measurable standards.” American students were victims of low expectations and inconsistent learning goals.

Continue reading

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