A Critical Skills Exercise: The Common Core – Do You KNOW What You Are FOR . . . or AGAINST?

When an issue as important as the education of our children is at stake, it might be wise to do a little “Critical Thinking.” Apparently that isn’t being done by a large percentage of the American people – at least that is what columnist Amanda Oglesby writes in her article, “Poll: Few Favor The Common Core” and posted on myCentralJersey.com.

Particularly striking is the fact that many base their opposition on false information. Her article offers two examples:

  • 44 percent of Americans incorrectly believe that the Common Core includes lessons in sex education. IT DOESN’T!
  • 43 percent of Americans incorrectly believe that the Common Core includes lessons on evolution or global warming. IT DOESN’T!
  • 48 percent incorrectly believe that Common Core includes teaching of the American Revolution. IT DOESN’T!

Oglesby reports that fully two thirds of Americans incorrectly believe that the Common Core standards include at least one of the following topics:

  • Sex Education,
  • Global Warming,
  • Evolution, and
  • The American Revolution.

My point is NOT to sway opinions one way or the other regarding the Common Core. I am fully FOR improvement in our educational system from top to bottom and that the educational system accountability system should NOT be based on some multiple choice standardized test that measures nothing more than a student’s ability to take a standardized test.

My point IS that if you are going to be FOR or AGAINST the Common Core, at least do your homework! Base your conclusions on SOLID FACTS – NOT what some politician who wants your vote is preaching.

From what Oglesby reports, a lot of conclusions about the Common Core among American citizens are not based on critical thinking.

Oglesby reports that the Farleigh Dickinson University poll found only 17 percent support for the Common Core standards with 40 percent of Americans disapproving and 42 percent of Americans unsure.

That is what is sad . . . . critical thinking does NOT drive the electorate’s mind: persuasive politicians and high powered talk show hosts or television talking heads are succeeding in swaying public opinion.

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