NJEA is Stronger than the StormSeptember 27, 2013
Sunday LeftoversSeptember 29, 2013
Here’s a bit of NJ weirdness: the Bergen County Board of Chosen Freeholders) has issued a resolution “in opposition to the Common Core and Assessments.” (Civics lesson: each of our 21 counties has a board of “freeholders,” an archaic term that refers to the elected group that holds the county’s purse strings, and in Bergen that’s a pretty hefty purse.)
The resolution, which the 7-member board passed unanimously, charges that the Common Core was “developed by non-governmental organizations and unelected boards outside of Bergen County,” was developed through “private” funding, violates privacy laws, and “violates Constitutional and Federal Law by granting the United States powers which the Constitution reserves for the States, or to the people.”
Another “whereas” states that one rationale for the resolution is that “the New Jersey Education Association urges the State to “slow down a headlong rush to over-rely on student test scores to evaluate teachers in New Jersey.”
What are freeholders doing opposing the Common Core? Got me. They’re supposed to be spending their time overseeing road paving and park maintenance and county-specific functions. But the resolution is a great example of the sort of ménage a trois that’s become a trademark of Common Core opposition: first, a dash of Tea Party-ish distortion of states’ rights, second, that suburban opposition to equity and accountability (not much of a poor urban constituency in monied Bergen), and, third, a misunderstanding of the blend of private and public funds already present in public education.