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Public Forum: Confronting Common Core Standards

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — Controversy has recently surrounded the Common Core State Education Standards.  Local residents had the opportunity to get their questions about the standards answered at a public forum on Saturday evening.

Opponents of the standards said they wanted a new plan in place for students.

“When you mess with people’s children, they don’t like it and Common Core is very bad for our children,” said Ann Eubank.  Common Core Standards are technically designed to provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn.

“As a grandmother, as a retired teacher, as a concerned citizen,” said Sharon Sewell, “I want Common Core stopped.  I want it repealed.”  Forty-five states have adopted the standards.  But according to retired teacher Sharon Sewell, it’s not good enough.

“I want us to go to something that is more specific to Alabama,” she said.  Ann Eubank agreed with Sewell.  “It wants everyone in the United States of America to learn the same thing at the same time.  This is America, there’s nothing common about Americans and none of us are the same,” said Eubank.

Huntsville City Schools Superintendent Dr. Casey Wardynski disagreed.  “It doesn’t make much sense for everybody to be on a different page.  We gotta be on something similar.  But, with high standards,” he said.

Dr. Wardynski joined Madison City Schools Superintendent Dr. Dee Fowler on Saturday at the public forum.  “We want to make sure that everyone is hearing both sides of the story and make sure that the story is the same everywhere,” said Fowler.

The superintendents have both shown support for the standards in their school systems. “Our kids are going to college all over the place right?” asked Wardynski.  “Well, most folks want their kids ready to go to college.  So, the standards are about like, what should I know when I’m done with high school?” he said.

Dr. Fowler said he just wants to make sure students’ futures stay at the forefront of the topic.  “I think that’s the important thing.  We’re all here for children and we’re all the best and let’s all work together.”

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