Cuomo to Join with Common Core’s Bill Gates Foundation to ‘Reimagine’ Education

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky
AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) announced Tuesday his state will partner with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to “reimagine” its school system as New Yorkers navigate toward a post-coronavirus “new normal.”

Cuomo said New York will work with the Gates Foundation – the primary private financier and promoter of the Obama-era Common Core State Standards – because “the old model of our education system where everyone sits in a classroom is not going to work in the new normal.”

The governor said, when schools reopen, he wants to “reimagine” them.

“[T]o do that, we are collaborating with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and exploring smart, innovative education alternatives” that utilize new technology, Cuomo added.

Without any taxpayer oversight, Gates and his foundation spearheaded the most recent progressive initiative known as the Common Core State Standards, by spending upwards of $250 million in grants to test consortia, nonprofits, teachers’ unions, and political groups eager to cash in on the new scheme.

Democrat and Republican lawmakers and governors of 46 states signed onto what was touted as “rigorous” K-12 uniform math and English language arts academic standards that would drive the performance of U.S. students upward and eliminate the achievement gap between white and Asian students and their classmates who were largely black and Hispanic.

In October 2015, Gates renewed his foundation’s commitment to Common Core, asserting, “we are on the right track.”

“There’s one other pivotal step in the movement for strong feedback and improvement systems, and that is the adoption of high, consistent academic standards throughout the country,” the Microsoft founder said at a U.S. Education forum in Seattle. “Today 42 states and the District of Columbia are using the Common Core State Standards.”

However, ten years after states adopted Common Core, a study released last week by the Boston-based Pioneer Institute revealed the historic drop in national reading and math scores on the Nation’s Report Card.

“Nearly a decade after states adopted Common Core, the empirical evidence makes it clear that these national standards have yielded underwhelming results for students,” said Pioneer executive director Jim Stergios in a statement. “The proponents of this expensive, legally questionable policy initiative have much to answer for.”

The study, titled “The Common Core Debacle” and authored by education policy researcher Theodor Rebarber, noted the “shocking trends” in American student performance in reading and math and, particularly, the further decline in performance of the nation’s lowest achieving students – many from black and Hispanic communities with failing schools.

Rebarber observed many education policy researchers have known since Common Core was introduced, that its “deeply flawed educational assumptions,” were “at odds with curriculum standards in top-achieving countries.”

Other national education leaders have lamented the expansion of the achievement gap, rather than its shrinking, as promoters of Common Core, such as Bill Gates, promised.

“Over the past decade, there has been no progress in either mathematics or reading performance,” Dr. Peggy Carr, associate commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics, said in October 2019.

“The lowest performing students – those readers who struggle the most – have made no progress in reading from the first NAEP administration almost 30 years ago,” she added.

 

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