Move the cursor over the top menu to see topics. Choose a topic and click on it for a listing of multiple articles.

NFRW Resolution “Defeat National Standards for State Schools” PDF  | Print |  E-mail


For NFRW Resolution “Defeat National Standards for State Schools”
Presented by the Alabama Federation of Republican Women



The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled that parents have a fundamental right to keep their children free from government standardization. 

Further, law prohibits the federal government from endorsing or dictating state/local decisions about curricula. 

But neither the Constitution nor federal laws is stopping Obama from nationalizing education by dictating national standards for all states, all schools, and all students – so WE MUST!


June 2011


Obama’s Goal is to “Transform the Federal Government’s Role in Education”

The centerpiece of President Obama’s education reform is Common Core State Standards (CCSS).  President Obama has made it clear in speeches that he “wants to transform the federal government’s role in education,” and his Department of Education Secretary has stated that the Obama administration will work “to redefine the federal role in education.” (News Education, “Obama wants stimulus to transform schools,” February 19, 2009.)   

What is “Common Core State Standards” (CCSS)?

CCSS are national standards for K-12, one-size-fits-all, that will be compulsory and will replace existing state standards for curricula, testing, teacher instruction, etc.  In essence, the federal government will decide what students should learn and think.  All schools must adopt 100% of the standards at each grade level

A Decades-Old Goal of Progressives has been to Nationalize Education (as with Healthcare)

        The movement to force states to accept federal education standards is decades old.  It got new energy in the 2008 Obama campaign, then in the transition to the Obama presidency – just as nationalized healthcare, also a long-time goal of Progressives, did.

  • Ø“Having taken over major parts of the banking industry, the mortgage industry, the auto industry, the college student-loan industry, and the health-care industry, the Obama administration is now taking over the $600 billion public-school industry with taxpayers’ money”.  (Phyllis Schlafly, “Common Core Standards For Public Schools:  A Bad Idea”, September 22, 2010)

The Obama Administration is Nationalizing Education by Stealth

  • ØJust as Nancy Pelosi stated that Congress would have to pass the healthcare bill to learn what was in it, the Obama administration pressured State Boards of Education to adopt national standards before they knew how they would be written.
  • ØJust as the Obama administration hid funds in the 2009 Stimulus Bill, which was supposed to be a jobs creation bill, to implement ObamaCare even before a healthcare bill was introduced, the Obama administration hid funds in the Stimulus Bill to help pay for the federal takeover of education.
  • ØThe Obama administration never requested Congress for a floor vote to nationalize education.
  • ØThe Obama administration dangled funds to reward states for adopting national standards but never revealed that it would cost states millions, billions in some cases, to implement CCSS.
  • ØThe Obama administration is attempting to evade Congress by pushing through radical policy changes in education through regulation rather than legislation. (Data Stewardship: Managing Personally Identifiable Information in Student Education Records (2010, November)

National Standards Come with “Strings Attached”

          The Obama administration is using taxpayers’ money to coerce compliance with CCSS

  • ØThe Obama administration states national standards are “voluntary”, while moving to make them mandatory.
  • oThe plan is to withhold federal funds if states don’t adopt Common Core State Standards
  • o“President Obama has repeatedly said he wants $15 billion in Title I funds to be contingent on states adopting Common Standards and Assessments.”  (Education Reporter, “Common Core Sparks War,” Number 305, June 2011)
  • oU.S. Rep. Glenn Thompson (R-PA) stated that “one key component of the Race to the Top guidelines is the requirement that states participate in and adopt a set of common academic standards …. In other words, the Common Core is being transformed from a voluntary, state-based initiative to a set of federal academic standards with corresponding federal tests.”  (
  • oPresident Obama has asked Congress to make national standards mandatory in the reauthorization of No Child Left Behind.
  • oWinners of the “Race to the Top” contest for charter schools must use CCSS to get funds.

National Standards End-Runs the U.S. Constitution, Congress, and Federal Laws

  • ØTying national standards to the granting or denying of federal funds (such as the $4.35 billion Race to the Top money and Title I funding), the Obama administration is making CCSS compulsory and in violation of federal laws.
  • Ø$5 billion dollars for education reform was included in the 2009 Stimulus Bill (which purpose was to create jobs) and it’s up to Obama’s Education Secretary as to how to dole out this money.  This is an end-run around Congress.
  • ØCCSS is also an end-run around federal laws which state that the federal government cannot endorse or mandate national standards for education.
  • Ø“Congress never took a floor vote on this huge expansion of the federal government into public education.” (
  • ØCCSS is also an end-run around the U.S. Constitution’s Tenth Amendment protection of states’ rights to oversee educational standards and parental rights to determine their children’s welfare and choices for their children in matters of education, religion, etc.

States cannot Opt-out of National Standards once Infrastructure is in Place

As with ObamaCare, once national standards cover the entire country, states cannot opt out.  Could this be why the Obama administration is rushing states to approve standards, even before they’re written, and to implement them in 2014?

    National Standards are Vulnerable to being Politicized 

        Federal standards will be politicized and interest groups including national unions will influence what is taught in the classroom.

  • ØNational unions were involved in drafting CCSS.
  • Ø“Children will never be adequately educated under a system run by bureaucrats handing out money and the teachers union (the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers) spending the money in the classroom.”  (Phyllis Schlafly, “Common Core Standards For Public Schools:  A Bad Idea”, September 22, 2010)
  • ØIf you like dealing with bureaucrats now, just wait until you have to deal with them over school issues.
  • ØA look into the 2009 Stimulus Bill and the health-care bill indicates that President Obama is more concerned about pleasing and paying back unions and less concerned about solving problems,  creating jobs, and improving schools.                  
  • ØThere are numerous examples of how President Obama politicizes decisions.  A few: 

(1) Obama administration’s defunded the successful D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program for lower-income students in the FY2010 budget, at the request of the National Education Association.

 (2) Obama’s National Labor Relations Board made an unprecedented decision to deny Boeing’s opening a manufacturing branch in S.C., as a bow to unions. 

(3) Obama’s EPA refused to grant critical air drilling permits to Shell Oil, preventing them from expanding operations in Alaska, to please another special interest group, environmentalists. 

(4)  Obama violated contractual law and gave unions a significant share of General Motors under the bailout plan while bypassing shareholders. 

(5)  Obama’s NLRB in June 2011 “proposed the most sweeping changes to the federal rules governing union organizing elections since 1947, giving a boost to unions that have long called for the agency to give employers less time to fight representation votes [from 90 days to 10 days],” – despite the fact that less than7% of private employees belong to a union and about 12% of the entire workforce. (Wall Street Journal, “Plan to Ease Way for Unions”, June 22, 2011.)

The American Federation of Teachers Union (AFT) Support National Standards

        The Washington-based union advocacy group, the Albert Shanker Institute, named for the late president of the AFT, submitted “The Shanker Manifesto”, signed by more than 200 union officials, in support of national standards.  Unions advocate “the development of standards and ‘shared curriculum’ for nearly every subject, including English, math, history, geography, the sciences, arts, and health.”  (Education Reporter, “Common Core Sparks War,” Number 305, June 2011.)

National Standards were Developed by Special Interest Groups Behind the Scenes

        National Standards “developed largely in secret through a process led by special-interest groups who are not elected and who lack any public accountability.”  This statement by Texas State Commissioner of Education Robert Scott, echoed concerns of many educators and public officials nationwide.  (Education Week, “Texas Pulling Out of Council of Chief State School Officers”, by Sean Cavanaugh, June 22, 2011)">

Special Interests Involved Behind-the-Scene Stand to Profit from CCSS

  • National standards are being developed behind the scenes and are led by vendors who stand to gain substantially from this plan (radical-left Obama appointees, and other radicals not in government -- not by parents, teachers, and local education boards, etc.  A few of these are:

ü  Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.  Bill Gates will profit from the requirement that schools purchase the latest multimedia technology.


  • Bill and Melinda Gates are key players in the federal takeover of public schools under the ObamaBill Gates has supported Obama’s agenda from the beginning of Obama’s campaign, has doled out money to many organizations to write and develop national standards and national assessments, and has worked closely with the U.S. Department of Education to institutionalize national standards and assessments.


    ü  Susan Dell Foundation.  This organization and the Gates Foundation are involved in the consortia efforts.


  • Both the Gates Foundation and the Susan Dell Foundation stand to make billions of dollars from the Common Core Standards and Race to the Top digitized standards, curricula, assessments, teacher evaluations, and personal data on all students (and their families) and educators in the public schools of our country

          ü  America’s Choice, the largest education publishing company in the world, will profit from 

       contracts to provide textbooks and other materials.


  • Phil Daro of America’s Choice is the head of the Common Core Math Writing(See damning evidence of America’s Choice instructional materials elsewhere in this document as to why CCSS is bad for students.)

ü  National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE).  Marc Tucker is president of NCEE,
             which enters into contracts with districts and states to develop standards-based tests.

  • Marc Tucker as presidentNCEE wrote a letter to Hillary at the beginning of the
    Clinton Administration that "laid out the master plan to take over the entire U.S.
    educational system so that it could serve national economic planning of the workforce.”  (

                          Source for the above  P:

  Resistance to the Union and Special Interest Backed CCSS is Emerging

  • ØA “counter-manifesto” to the “Shanker Manifesto” mentioned above has been issued (title” Closing the Door on Innovation:  Why One Curriculum is Bad for America”), stating that the “creation of a ‘national curriculum’ and ‘national standards’ is just plain wrong.”  Co-author Jay Greene accused the special interest and union backed supporters of CCSS of using “stealth tactics” to get states to adopt national standards and assessments.   Over 200 educators, policymakers, and concerned citizens have signed this. 
  • ØSome states, as they get more information, are considering rescinding their adoption of CCSS.  To date these include Alabama, New Hampshire, Minnesota, and South Carolina.  Texas and Alaska said no at the beginning.
  • Ø“Some Validation Committee members would not sign off on the CCSS.  Don’t you wonder why, especially when these standards have been promoted as being” the answer to problems in education?”  (
  • Ø(Phyllis Schlafly, “Common Core Standards For Public Schools:  A Bad Idea”, September 22, 2010)
  • ØThe Obama administration has spent to date $330 million to fund the development of national assessments and $31.6 million to fund instructional materials.

The “Cover” for National Standards is that CCSS is needed so Students can Compete Globally

          Advocates for national standards argue that common standards are needed so that students will be competitive in a global society

  • ØThere’s no compelling evidence that national standards work.  Nations that beat the U.S. on international comparisons and nations that do worse than the U.S. have these standards.  (“Closing the Door on Innovation:  Why One Curriculum is Bad”)
  • ØThe National Education Policy Center reveals the lack of field testing and points out that “research does not support this oft-expressed rationale.” (National Education Policy Center, “Common Core School Standards Roll On Without Supporting Evidence”, July 21, 2010). 
  • ØThe issue of “failing schools” lies at the heart of the debate about “global competitiveness”.   The liberals will not address those schools, but where local leaders have attempted to improve by using charter schools among the tools available, improvements are seen as witnessed in New Orleans and New York City.

The “Agenda” Behind CCSS can be Found in the “Dear Hillary Letter” Written During the Clinton Administration.


A chilling letter from Marc Tucker to Hillary Clinton in 1992 immediately after Bill Clinton won the presidency explains why President Obama calls CCSS his “college and career readiness” plan and why Marc Tucker as president of the National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE) is involved in writing CCSS for President Obama.

     The public is aware of this letter thanks to Rep. Bob Schaffer who on Sept. 25, 1998, placed in the Congressional Record an 18-page letter that has become famous as Marc Tucker's "Dear Hillary" letter. It lays out the master plan of the Clinton Administration to take over the entire U.S. educational system so that it can serve national economic planning of the workforce.

The "Dear Hillary" letter, written on Nov. 11, 1992 by Marc Tucker, president of the National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE), lays out a plan "to remold the entire American system" into "a seamless web that literally extends from cradle to grave and is the same system for everyone," coordinated by "a system of labor market boards at the local, state and federal levels" where curriculum and "job matching" will be handled by counselors "accessing the integrated computer-based program."


Tucker's plan would change the mission of the schools from teaching children academic basics and knowledge to training them to serve the global economy in jobs selected by workforce boards. Nothing in this comprehensive plan has anything to do with teaching schoolchildren how to read, write, or calculate. The intent was to use the following three mechanisms to restructure public schools:

  1. Bypass all elected officials on school boards and in state legislatures by making federal funds flow to the Governor and his appointees on workforce development boards.
  2. Use a computer database, a.k.a. "a labor market information system," into which school personnel would scan all information about every schoolchild and his family, identified by the child's social security number: academic, medical, mental, psychological, behavioral, and interrogations by counselors. The computerized data would be available to the school, the government, and future employers.
  3. Use "national standards" and "national testing" to cement national control of tests, assessments, school honors and rewards, financial aid, and the Certificate of Initial Mastery (CIM), which is designed to replace the high school diploma.

“Designed on the German system, the Tucker plan is to train children in specific jobs to serve the workforce and the global economy instead of to educate them so they can make their own life choices.”

          Fortunately, the plans were not fully implemented and components were replaced by No Child Left Behind when George Bush took office.  Now under Obama, Marc Tucker and the same organizations that pushed the above agenda are back on the scene and have every intention to fully implementing their agenda.  Their goal is to make adoption of national standards permanent unlike what transpired during the Clinton administration, so there can be no rescinding of national standards by states, future presidents, or Congress.

National Standards Weakens Student Privacy Protections

            The Department of Education is weakening longstanding student privacy protections by greatly expanding the universe of individuals and entities who have access to Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and by broadening the programs whose data might be subject to this access.  (Data Stewardship:  Managing Personally Identifiable Information in Student Education Records (2010, November; )

  • ØThe Pupil Protection Rights Act (PPRA) requires parental notification if a study to be conducted in a school includes any information or questions about the student or the student’s family related to the eight identified sensitive topics:  political affiliations or beliefs; religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs; mental and psychological problems; sex behavior or attitudes; illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating and demeaning behavior; critical appraisals of family members; legally recognized privileged relationships; or income.

 National Assessments Will Cost Taxpayers Significant $$$

  • ØNational assessments will be done online and schools must buy new equipment and software
  • ØLayers of technology staffers will be required
  • ØTeachers will be required to pay for elaborate and ongoing teacher training




  • ØIt will cost millions of dollars for a state to convert from its existing standards to the national standards.  “Estimated implementation costs have ranged from $183 million in Washington State for approximately 1 million students to $1.6 billion in California for more than 6 million students.”  (


     The Heritage Foundation, Lindsey Burke, “National; Education Standards and Tests: Big Expense, Little Value”,   February 18, 2011

  • ØMany states are experiencing severe budget shortages and cutbacks in education expenses, and some states are considering raising taxes including property taxes to pay for CCSS.

  National standards is a Federal Takeover of Local Education, Goes against Federalism, takes away       Parental Rights, and Fails to Solve Education Problems

  • ØCCSS don’t address systemic problems of how to get parents involved, fire poor teachers, reduce high school dropouts, and diminish the influence of unions.
  • ØThe United States does not have a national school system, but national standards and national tests will change that.  The 10th Amendment makes it clear that the ultimate authority to create and administer education rests with the states.

  National Standards is Good for the Department of Education But NOT for Students

                Good for DOE

  • ØThe Department of Education has spent trillions of dollars -- $100 billion every year – and can’t show any increase in test scores!  Many politicians and members of the public continue to ask that DOE be sunset.  Mandatory and permanent national standards would give them a lifeline.
  • ØBoards of Bureaucrats make binding decisions, as with ObamaCare, and voters cannot fire or otherwise hold the decision-makers accountable.

 Bad for Students 

  • ØShelby Steele of Stanford University’s Hoover Institution stated that the long-term consequences for students of CCSS is bad:  “Decentralization has been the engine of educational innovation.  We shouldn’t trade our federalist birthright for a national-curriculum mess of pottage.”  (Education Wee, 5-18-11 and 3-9-11; School Reform News, 5-20-11) 
  • Ø(“Closing the Door on Innovation: Why One National Curriculum is Bad for America,” – the counter-manifesto to the Shanker Manifesto signed by special interests and union leaders.) 
  • ØCCS math requirements are ‘dumbed down’ and will only serve to weaken students’ math and science knowledge.” 
  • ØCommon Core math standards are several years behind the standards in high-performing countries; and the ‘coherence of the standards for fractions’ offers serious concerns.”  (James Milgram, math professor emeritus at Stanford University) 
  • ØA report titled “Literary Study in Grades 9, 10, and 11 in Arkansas” (pp 41-42), America’s Choice (AC) was used by Arkansas to turn around the low-performing schools .  After spending $6.2 million, there was no improvement.  America’s Choice is one of the organizations writing CCSS.  ( 
  • ØArkansas high-school English teachers in an America’s Choice school testified that AC “homogenizes” all students to fit the lowest standards and holds the better students back.  The Pre-AP students do the same AC assignments as the lower-level students.  “AC expects students to read 25 books per year but excludes the difficult classics right away…the AP Syllabus supersedes AC … AC for kids reading at the 5th or 6th grade level in an attempt to get them reading at grade level … we’ve changed the book-based, theme-based, literature-based to strategy-based.  The emphasis of AC is not on college-readiness but is on how to fill out forms, on life skills, or reading instructional manuals, and gets rid of the classics.”  (
  • ØArkansas is not the only school which has complained about the lack of academic achievement by AC schools.  Massachusetts had the same outcome when AC partnered with Holyoke, Massachusetts, from 2006-2008.  “As noted by a local reporter:  ‘Few improvements were seen when the schools tried the America’s Choice math program so that was ended.’”  (
  • ØNational standards and national assessments “threatens to close the door on educational innovation, freezing in place an unacceptable status quo and hindering efforts to develop academically rigorous curricula, assessments, and standards that meet the challenges that lie ahead.”    (“Closing the Door on Innovation: Why One National Curriculum is Bad for America,” – the counter-manifesto to the Shanker Manifesto signed by special interests and union leaders.)
  • ØCCSS “undermine(s) control of public school curriculum and instruction at the local and state level – the historic locus for effective innovation and reform in education – and transfer(s) control to an elephantine, inside-the-Beltway bureaucracy.”  (“Closing the Door on Innovation: Why One National Curriculum is Bad for America,” – the counter-manifesto to the Shanker Manifesto signed by special interests and union leaders.)
  • Ø[T]ransferring power to Washington, D.C., will only further subordinate educational decisions to political imperatives.  All presidential administrations – present and future, Democratic and Republican – are subject to political pressure.”  (“Closing the Door on Innovation: Why One National Curriculum is Bad for America,” – the counter-manifesto to the Shanker Manifesto signed by special interests and union leaders.)
  • ØCentralized control in the U.S. Department of Education would upset the system of checks and balances between different levels of government, creating greater opportunities for special interests to use their national political leverage to distort policy. 
  • “Our decentralized fifty-state system provides some limitations on special-interest power, ensuring that other voices can be heard, that wrongheaded reforms don’t harm children in every state, and that reforms that effectively serve children’s needs can find space to grow and succeed.”

  (“Closing the Door on Innovation: Why One National Curriculum is Bad for America,” – the counter-manifesto to the Shanker Manifesto signed by special interests and union leaders.)


Arguments for national standards sound simple:  Set high standards, make all schools meet them, student achievement will soar and students will be able to complete globally – BUT, apart from the fact that national standards and assessments violate Constitutional and federal laws:

E No federal education program has worked. 

E Unelected bureaucrats and special interest groups will control our children’s education, virtually
         eliminating parents’ participation.

        National standards will NOT increase student achievement.

  • Ø“Despite Obama administration claims, research finds no link between achievement scores and academic standards.” (National Education Policy Center, “Common Core School Standards Roll On Without Supporting Evidence), July 21, 2010)
  • Ø
  • Ø“Common standards within states under NCLB did not result in consistency and collaboration among districts within states,” although this was the purpose.  “Why should we believe the CCSS would bring this about across district and states lines?”  (Source:  Truth in American Education,
  • ØThere is evidence elsewhere within this document that standards/curriculum/tests administered by one of the developers of national standards, America’s Choice, actually reduced student achievement.

Should we worry that given no proof that national standards work that the agenda for the federal government to take control and nationalize education is a stealth way to achieve a political agenda?