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Eye On Boise

House Education Committee gets an earful from out-of-state Common Core opponent

A Common Core opponent from Wisconsin spent 30 minutes yelling and screaming at the House Education Committee Monday morning before the chairwoman cut him off, reports Idaho EdNews. Freedom Project Academy academic director Duke Pesta was in Boise for a “Buck the Core” anti-Common Core rally at the Statehouse. But first, he was scheduled to address the House committee.

Speak at the committee's 8:30 a.m. meeting, Pesta raised his voice loudly and spoke rapidly throughout much of his presentation, writes EdNews reporter Clark Corbin. He said states were bribed into adopting Common Core and “crony capitalist” companies were making billions off public school students as a result. Pesta also claimed that student enrollment in calculus courses decreased significantly under Common Core, and said algebra classes were pushed back later in students’ academic careers, dumbing them down in the process.

However, Republican Rep. Ryan Kerby, the retired superintendent of the New Plymouth School District, said the opposite occurred in his community. Calculus enrollment is increasing and students are taking algebra courses earlier in their academic careers — often in eighth grade. “There are quite a few different ways of looking at this thing,” Kerby said.

Pesta also railed against lower science standards — even though science is not part of the Idaho Core Standards. Idaho has not updated its science standards since 2001, well before the creation of Common Core. You can read Corbin’s full report here.

Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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