Pavlov, Senate Education Committee pass Common Core repeal-replace bill

Sen. Phil Pavlov

Sen. Phil Pavlov

LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate Education Committee on Tuesday approved Senate Bill 826, a measure to repeal the Common Core State Standards in Michigan.

“It is time to end the disastrous national experiment that is Common Core and let Michigan manage its own destiny to achieve excellence in our education system,” said Senate Education Committee Chairman Sen. Phil Pavlov, R-St. Clair Township. “This bill sets quality, Michigan-controlled standards that give our schools consistency for the future and give local communities a voice in their children’s education.”

SB 826 would repeal the state’s current Common Core standards and replace them with the Massachusetts pre-Common Core standards. It would also direct state officials to align state testing with the new standards and require them to honor parents’ right to opt out their child from the state test.

The committee heard lengthy testimony from parents, educators and education experts, including Dr. Sandra Stotsky, professor emerita at the University of Arkansas, who helped develop but ultimately rejected the Common Core State Standards in Massachusetts.

“Massachusetts pre-Common Core standards are the only standards with empirical evidence to support their effectiveness,” Stotsky said.

Massachusetts has been widely praised for a number of years as the best state for education. A 2014 report by the group Business Leaders of Michigan found Massachusetts’ performance to be leading all other states, and the same year the Education Trust-Midwest said, “No state is perfect, but Massachusetts is as close as it gets.” Those results were accomplished under Massachusetts’ pre-Common Core standards.

“Replacing Common Core will put children at the center of Michigan’s education system, return control to local school boards and communities, and raise expectations for our students to better equip them to be good citizens,” Pavlov said.

SB 826 now heads to the full Senate for further consideration.