Arizona Capitol

Ban on Common Core in Arizona Voted Down

Another attempt to ban the Common Core standards in Arizona schools has been voted down by state lawmakers.

The Arizona Senate yesterday voted 16-13 to defeat a bill that would have banned the standards from being used in schools, thanks to a few Republican senators who joined the Democrats in defeating the measure.

The standards have become a hot political issue, and the complaints against Common Core are wide-ranging. Much of the dissent centers on standards not being created at the local level.

"The people of this state do not like Common Core," pleaded Republican Senator Steve Smith. "How do I know that? Well, I think simply looking at our superintendent race alone is an indication."

Indeed, Diane Douglas -- who was elected as the Superintendent of Public Instruction in November -- essentially ran a one-issue campaign that was the end of Common Core in Arizona.

Despite Douglas' Democratic opponent David Garcia getting the support of some high-profile Republicans, Douglas still was elected, and has attempted to follow through on her promise to rid the state of the national academic standards.

Republican Senator John Kavanagh said that if the ban were successful, Arizona would have gone back to its AIMS standards for a few years until the state came up with its own system to replace Common Core.

Although Governor Doug Ducey has said he's not in favor of Common Core, he recently told reporters that a ban on the standards wasn't necessary, like in House Bill 2190, but has called for a review of Arizona's implementation of Common Core.

"Our state needs to act so we can move forward," Ducey told the State Board of Education last week. "Begin by reviewing the English Language Arts and Mathematics standards in their entirety to ensure that our children are well served by the standards you develop -- with full transparency. Standards that are Arizona's. Standards that our parents and teachers bring forward together."

Ducey has called this a "review and replace" of Common Core, though all legislative efforts to ban Common Core have failed.

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