Donald Trump: ‘Common Core’s a Total Disaster’

Audience members wait for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump to pass during a campaign event at the University of Iowa Field House, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2016 in Iowa City, Iowa.
AP Photo/Paul Sancya

2016 GOP frontrunner Donald Trump says in a new video released on Facebook that Common Core is a “disaster,” and that he will make education a priority if he is elected president.

Trump says in his new video:

I’m a tremendous believer in education. But education has to be at a local level. We cannot have the bureaucrats in Washington telling you how to manage your child’s education.

So Common Core’s a total disaster – we can’t let it continue. We are rated 28th in the world – the United States! – think of it! – 28th in the world – and, frankly, we spend far more per pupil than any other country in the world…by far – it’s not even a close second. So here we are, we spend more money, and we’re rated 28 – third world countries are ahead of us.

We’re gonna end Common Core, we’re gonna have education an absolute priority.

Trump has consistently referred to Common Core as a “disaster.”

He has used the issue of the federal education program to emphasize that he is not a member of the Washington elite.

“It’s a way of taking care of the people in Washington that, frankly, I don’t even think they give a damn about education, half of them,” he said last July, and at the South Carolina Tea Party Convention recently, Trump told his audience, “[T]hese people in Washington – the bureaucrats – are making a fortune. They don’t give a damn about your kids in South Carolina.”

Trump has given plain voice to the concerns of many parents throughout the country. What is not clear – at least for now – are the details of his education views.

In November, a New Hampshire grass-roots activist asked Trump about the data collection aspect of the Common Core reform, and whether he would close the loopholes in the federal privacy law to ensure students’ personal information remained private.

“I didn’t know Common Core was so complicated,” he responded. “Isn’t this ridiculous? You could have local education, with local people, and local schools, and you don’t have a problem. But some bureaucrat in Washington just wants to make money.”

“I would close all of it,” Trump replied. “You have to have privacy. You have to have privacy. So I’d close all of it. But, most of all, I’d get everything out of Washington, ‘cause that’s where it’s all emanating from.”

That last statement suggests Trump would consider eliminating the U.S. Department of Education (USED), though he provides few details. The Wall Street Journal reported two weeks ago that Trump vowed to do “tremendous cutting” of the federal government, including the USED.

Last August, Trump received a grade of B- on the Common Core Report Card generated at The Pulse 2016. The report suggests that while Trump has shown he is willing to stand and fight, he needs to include more details of his plans.

“Trump has struck a chord with the Republican base, something many would have thought unlikely a year ago,” wrote Emmett McGroarty, executive director at American Principles in Action. “Citizens view him as having the courage and will to stand and fight, something that many GOP candidates have seemed to lack in years past.”


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