GOP nominee Donald Trump has named noted Common Core critic Williamson (Bill) Evers to his presidential transition team, Education Week reports.
Evers, a fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, served as both an advisor and an assistant U.S. Secretary of Education under President George W. Bush. He also was named by both former California governors Pete Wilson and Arnold Schwarzenegger to serve on commissions that evaluate and recommend academic standards.
In January of 2015, Evers penned an op-ed for Education Week in which he denounced the Common Core State Standards:
[I]ncreasingly, parents and taxpayers view the public schools as an unresponsive bureaucracy carrying out edicts from distant capitals. Today, we are dealing with a deteriorating situation in a declining institution, namely widespread ineffective instruction in the public schools.
The common core’s designers have taken the existing bureaucracy and increased its centralization and uniformity. By creating the common-core content standards behind closed doors, the authors increased the alienation of the public from schools as institutions worthy of loyalty. The general public had no voice in creating or adopting the common core.
The common core’s promoters are endeavoring to suppress competitive federalism. The common core’s rules and its curriculum guidance are the governing rules of a cartel. The common core’s promoters and their federal facilitators wanted a cartel that would override competitive federalism and shut down the curriculum alternatives that federalism would allow.
The new common-core-aligned tests, whose development was supported with federal funds, function to police the cartel. All long-lasting cartels must have a mechanism for policing and punishing those seen as shirkers and chiselers, or, in other words, those who want to escape the cartel’s strictures or who want increased flexibility so they can succeed.
The new leadership of the College Board by David Coleman, one of the common core’s chief architects, is being used to corral Catholic schools, other private schools, and home-schooling parents into the cartel. The proponents of the common core have now established a clearinghouse for authorized teaching materials to try to close off any remaining possible avenue of escaping the cartel.
Additionally, as Breitbart News reported, Evers sounded an alarm about California’s leftwing K-12 curriculum. Writing at the Orange County Register, he observed the new framework “is filled with present-minded paraphrases of the uplifting rhetoric of the Progressives of early 20th-century America.” He noted as well, however, that missing in the leftwing curriculum are other facts about the Progressive movement, such as their “devotion to eugenics and their opposition to African Americans getting an academic education.”