Investigative Kathleen McGrory reports in the Miami Herald that Common Core has critics on the left.

This is noteworthy, because Secretary of Education Arne Duncan insists that the main criticism of Common Core comes from extremists and fringe groups like the Tea Party. He also insists that the federal Department of Education has had nothing whatever to do with the Common Core standards; after all it is illegal for the federal Department of Education to interfere in curriculum or instruction. Methinks the gentleman doth protest too much. Everyone knows that 45 states would not have endorsed the Common Core standards without the lure of $4.35 billion in federal Race to the Top dollars, offered as an incentive for those who signed on to standards they may never have seen.

McGrory discovered critics of Common Core on the left, and lo and behold, they are teachers.

To be specific, they are the Badass Teachers Association.

McGrory writes:

The 25,000 BATs, as they call themselves, are pushing back against the national standards with Twitter strikes, town hall meetings and snarky Internet memes. They have no qualms with the theory behind the new benchmarks, but they fear the larger movement places too much emphasis on testing and will stifle creativity in the classroom.

“It’s not just the Tea Party that’s skeptical of the Common Core,” said Bonnie Cunard, a Fort Myers teacher who manages the Facebook page for the 1,200 Florida BATs. “We on the left, like the folks on the right, are saying we want local control.”

The BATs represent a new wave of liberal opposition to the Common Core standards, which includes some union leaders, progressive activists and Democratic lawmakers. They are joining forces with Tea Party groups and libertarians, who want states like Florida to slow down efforts to adopt the new benchmarks and corresponding tests.

They face an uphill battle. The Common Core standards have a strong base of support that includes both Democrats and Republicans. What’s more, the standards are already being taught across all grade levels in Florida.

It’s not only the BATs.

“The sand is shifting for us on Common Core,” said Andy Ford, president of the Florida Education Association.

Ford fears teachers weren’t adequately prepared for the transition to the new standards, even though they will be evaluated — and in some cases, compensated — based on how well their students perform.

For Susan Smith, who heads the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida, the greatest concern is the testing that will accompany the new benchmarks.

“We shouldn’t be revamping our education standards without first considering if we are overtesting our kids,” Smith said. “That’s putting the cart before the horse.”

The Wall Street hedge fund managers’ group Democrats for Education Reform loves the Common Core and the disruptive effects of the testing that comes with it.

So does the Obama administration, and so do many teachers and parents who hope it will help their schools.

But so does Florida’s Republican legislature, which leaves no stone unturned when it comes to looking for ways to privatize public schools and demoralize classroom teachers.

But the opposition is strong enough that state Sen. Dwight Bullard, D-Miami, is calling for a review before Florida moves further ahead with the standards and accompanying exams.

“I get what the intention was with Common Core,” said Bullard, a Miami Democrat and teacher. “But it got lost in the shuffle with all of the other education reform policies. Now, you might as well scrap the whole idea.”