Attorney General Abbott: Texas Schools Can’t Use Common Core

June 17, 2014

Sen. Dan Patrick asked Atty Gen Greg Abbott a simple question: can Texas schools legally use Common Core?    The answer was equally simple: NO.

AG Abbott issued a ruling today which stated that while ISD’s are required to provide instruction in essential knowledge and skills at appropriate grade levels they may not use Common Core State Standards Initiative to comply with this requirement.

A briefing submitted to the Attorney General’s office by an attorney on behalf of the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) stated that the TEKS and Common Core Standards overlap in many instances (like addition and subtraction).   TASB appears to be making the case that if teachers cannot use Common Core Standards in any way, it will result in an inability to teach many of the required TEKS due to this overlap.

The AG’s response?  “That concern is baseless.”  To use a simple example, if TEKS requires teaching that 2+2=4, the bill plainly does not prevent this instruction silly because Common Core also teaches that 2+2=4.

Legislation this past session (HB 462 to Sen Patrick and Rep Dan HubertY) which prohibits use of Common Core even included the language “to prevent the use of materials where the two standards may overlap.”  Legislation passed was to prohibit the outright adoption of national common core standards.

It appears TASB – a group funded  by school districts with Texas education dollars– was on the wrong side of this issue.  Again.

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