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Report Aims to Dissuade Catholic Leaders from Teaching Common Core Standards in Catholic Schools

Report Aims to Dissuade Catholic Leaders from Teaching Common Core Standards in Catholic Schools

A report from the Cardinal Newman Society published last week attempts to dissuade Catholic leaders from teaching the Common Core Standards in their schools after determining the standards to represent “academic and moral insufficiency.”

Called "After the Fall: Catholic Education Beyond the Common Core,” the preface explains to readers why the Common Core is “incompatible with and unsuited for a traditional Catholic education.”

For one, the report’s authors believe that the Common Core’s practice of emphasizing informational texts leaves out important classical literature. And on the subject of math standards, the report refers to them as “woeful” and argues they are representative of the standards' “narrow aims.”

Regardless of its lack of religious elements, the Cardinal Newman Society argues that the standards deprive students of important teachings in every subject that will set them back for life.

"Even though the Common Core is primarily focused on the academic disciplines of English and mathematics, its truncated and errant view of education affects all aspects of schooling including history, science, and the arts,” the report says.

As a result, the report advises Catholic leaders in all of the country’s schools to scrap the standards, even in the six states that require Catholic school students to take state-administered exams aligned to the Common Core.

"Some test preparation may be prudent for Catholic schools in these six states, but whole-scale adoption of the Common Core standards is not necessary or advisable, especially as the state tests themselves are in flux,” the report says.

The report argues that the Common Core robs students of “human excellence” and will thus create a world lacking truly productive and enlightened workers.

Further, the report says that Common Core training focuses too much on training students for certain jobs than it does providing them with “a broader mental and personal formation.”

"The distinct mission of Catholic schools [without the influence of the Common Core] is clearer and can stand out now more than ever, [as] now is the time for Catholic schools to press their advantage,” the report concludes.

Read the full report here.

Nicole Gorman, Senior Education World Contributor

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