Abby White is a junior at Shaker Heights High School in Ohio and an editor at her high school newspaper. She researched the Common Core, read the standards, interviewed faculty, and developed her own views about their strengths and weaknesses.

She wrote this article for her school newspaper, the Shakerite.

She has done more research than many newspaper reporters, who like to quote what people say for and against the Common Core, without deigning to read them. She works harder to understand and explain the subject than many people twice her age.

Without spoiling her effort to analyze the standards, I present here her biggest concern: how do we know they will measure up to all the promises?

She writes:

“That’s like devising a new surgical method to fix a man’s heart condition, not testing that method, and going ahead with the surgery anyway. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I would never act so rashly. Sure, the new method could work; it could also kill the patient.

“The Common Core State Standards are changing the face of America’s education for approximately 50 million students, teachers and other public school faculty — not including parents. Imposing such a huge change with no gauge of its effectiveness is downright irresponsible. Our education system is the patient, and we have no guarantee it won’t die on the operating table. In fact, right now, I don’t think its chances are good.”

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