Parents fed up with their kids’ declining math grades under newly adopted Common Core standards took an unorthodox step to remedy the problem: They pulled their children out of school for an hour a day to teach them at home.
Nine parents took their seventh- and eighth-graders from math class at Evergreen Middle School in Hillsboro, Ore., reported KATU-TV in Portland, citing a sudden drop in grades and performance.
Seventh-grader Amy Craig had always been an “A” student in math until this year when she brought home a “D,” her mother Julie Craig told KATU. Another mom said her daughter, previously a sold “B” math student, is now failing the subject.
So the parents keep their kids at home for an hour each morning, then the kids head to school for the rest of the day.
This is the first school year that every Oregon public school has been using Common Core teaching standards, KATU reported.
“Our teachers would tell you math is more challenging this year than it was a year ago,” Rian Petrick, principal of Evergreen Middle School, told the station.
Petrick said he’s not surprised some students are struggling, as Common Core math standards call for fewer numbers and formulas and more word problems and real-world scenarios, along with more group work.
“Our teachers feel like it’s the best thing for kids,” Petrick said, “making them look much deeper into mathematics than they have in the past.”
But asked whether the standards were the best thing considering nine families pulled their kids from math class over stress and struggles, a Hillsboro School District spokeswoman present for the KATU interview stopped Petrick before he could answer.
“You don’t have to answer that, Rian,” she interjected. ‘That’s an aggressive question.”
According to KATU, while the state won’t test students on Common Core math standards until 2015, it has predicted that up to two-thirds of middle schoolers could fail those standards based on a similar test.
The Oregon Department of Education did not immediately return a request for comment from TheBlaze Friday.
Separately, Oregon state Rep. Lew Frederick noted a “searing critique” of Common Core by Catholic scholars on his Facebook page, KATU added. The statement issued last month reads in part: “Promoters of Common Core say that it is designed to make America’s children ‘college and career ready.’ We instead judge Common Core to be a recipe for standardized workforce preparation.”
The critique also states, “Common Core adopts a bottom-line, pragmatic approach to education. The heart of its philosophy, as far as we can see, is that it is a waste of resources to ‘over-educate’ people.”
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