Recently, I attended two local public information meetings about Common Core. In these presentations, the educators expressed how impressed they were with how Common Core content would help the critical thinking skills of students.

I have no doubt this will happen; however, my concerns are:

 The ease of teaching applications can mean that future teachers will become facilitators instead of educators. Teaching to “acceptable” standards can restrict progress toward the best student achievement. Will results-based education hamper the critical thinking we expect from instructors?

 Teaching to the “standards” could align our students with career outcomes that are programmed for their individual results, categorizing each child within expected parameters of achievement instead of allowing them to fulfill their potential.

 What critical means is there to ensure these standards meet international benchmarks?

 Computer technology is a vital component of the Common Core curriculum and the Smarter Balanced Assessment. How transparent are the infrastructure costs to taxpayers?

 Is the goal of this program to also ensure equal outcomes of school district achievement regardless of their ability to pay costs?

 The federal government has financed the effort with our tax dollars. Will state subsidies for this project be undermined in the future?

 As we advance toward learning with the aid of computer technology, will students still be able to compute results through manual resources and memory? A true test of skill level when there is no computer-aided technology should still be part of the fundamental lessons in reading, writing and arithmetic at all grade levels.

Use your own critical thinking. Ask yourself if the information is transparent enough to make a societal change as large as this initiative on your child and future generations. Please, stay engaged with your school board to protect local control of public education.

Bette Brunswick

Ward 3 city councilor