Image 01 Image 03

Scott Walker seeks to rid Wisconsin of Common Core

Scott Walker seeks to rid Wisconsin of Common Core

Effort to repeal education standards failed earlier this year in the state

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (R) has asked the Wisconsin Legislature to pass a bill next year to repeal the controversial Common Core educational standards. Walker issued a one-line statement late Thursday that also said the Common Core curriculum should be replaced by standards “set by people in Wisconsin.”

Walker’s one-sentence statement was issued late Thursday, hours after Sens. Leah Vukmir, R- Wauwatosa, and Paul Farrow, R-Pewaukee, issued a joint statement calling for a delay in using new standardized tests aligned to ​Common Core.

Later Thursday, Walker spokesman Jocelyn Webster elaborated on the governor’s comments:

“Following the vote by the Cedarburg School Board yesterday and given the ongoing issues local school districts face with Common Core, Gov. Walker felt it was important to make his position clear. Gov. Walker will work with the Legislature to repeal Common Core and replace it with strong Wisconsin-specific standards developed by Wisconsin teachers, administrators, and parents.”

The standards have become increasingly controversial in Wisconsin, with conservatives repeatedly calling for their repeal. In Cedarburg, the school board voted Wednesday to ask lawmakers to delay testing linked to the standards.

Common Core was a prominent punching bag during last week’s Republican Governors Association meeting. In fact, Walker hinted at his intentions during the meeting.

“My problem with Common Core is, I don’t want people outside Wisconsin telling us what our standards should be,” Walker said Sunday at the governors’ conference.

Walker, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, joins other prominent Republicans who have called for the standards to be spiked. Indiana Gov. Mike Pence was first to sign legislation revoking Common Core in April, and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal signed executive orders blocking tests tied to the standards.

On cue, Mary Burke — Walker’s challenger in the gubernatorial election — says the move is just politics.

Joe Zepecki, a spokesman for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke, questioned Walker’s motives for issuing the call at a time when the Legislature isn’t even in session. Zepecki called the move a “desperate” effort to shore up Walker’s right-wing base.

“He offers zero explanation for why (he) wants to undermine efforts to improve our educational standards from 38th in the country and zero plan for moving forward,” Zepecki said in an email. “Why the sudden change of course after 3 years of DPI (the state Department of Public Instruction) working on implementing these standards?”

But surprisingly, Gov. Walker may face some dissent in his own Republican Party over his request.

Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R) issued a statement today in which he stated while there may be support for repealing Common Core, “developing new standards that satisfy everyone’s concerns will be much more difficult.”

The Common Core national standards were adopted by Wisconsin’s state superintendent in 2010 and conservative state lawmakers had tried to repeal the standards this year. The effort to repeal the standards in Wisconsin failed even though Republicans control the Legislature.

Aside from his high profile campaign against public service unions in his first term, reforming education has actually been a priority for Walker separate from the Common Core controversy.


Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.


All of the contemplated transitions I have seen away from Common Core remain tied to what fundamentally makes CCSSI’s actual intentions so abhorrent to a free society. They remain performance standards instead of tied to the transmission of knowledge and what should be known.

To put it succinctly, performance standards are not really mental and actively disparage K-12 nurturing the rational, logical mind. explains how performance assessments actually work. They are designed to change the student at the level of values, attitudes, and beliefs and repeatedly say so. But no one is being honest with these governors as to what is really going on. is federal legislation on the issue of ‘testing.’ Contrary to the explanation of less testing, the actual language appears to me to shift away from summative testing as in what do the students actually know. That’s always been problemmatic when changing the student’s beliefs and values becomes the focus.

Instead the language appears to me to make that OBE emphasis the whole point by substituting what are called formative assessments. These ‘mold the student affectively’ curricula and activities are also called assessments for learning.

Learning though is now consistently defined as changing a student’s values, attitudes, beliefs, or behaviors. I wrote a book Credentialed to Destroy: How and Why Education Became a Weapon explaining what outcomes based education really seeks and why Common Core is really just the latest and supposedly final volley in this dispute over collectivism as a vision of the future that goes back to John Dewey.

Anyone who believes that they are not at risk because their state has ‘withdrawn’ from the Common Core should read it to appreciate that they remain at risk until the true aims of these education ‘reforms’ are accurately understood.

PrincetonAl | July 18, 2014 at 3:41 pm

Probably like other LI regulars who watched the recall and other trials, Walker continues to impress me.

1) He has taken a Blue State to the right, which is far more impressive than governing a red state and keeping the status quo.

In particular, take a look at the difference between Walker and Pence in Indiana, where Pence has taken a wonderful legacy from Mitch Daniels, and is doing stupid big government Republican stuff. Yech.

2) His quiet accomplishments are rock solid. Gutting corrupt government labor union practices, facing intense adversity, taking savings in spending and putting them into tax cuts – and putting the money right back into the right areas so that he can show critics that he can save money and increase real education spending on teachers at the same time.

3) While the hard left despises him, his demeanor doesn’t yield to the easy “extremist” demonization of a Ted Cruz.

I could get really really excited about this guy as our presidential nominee. I like others, but I think he might practically attack the overall infiltration of our government bureaucracy by extremists and shut off the spending to the bad areas.

If we elect someone who is for the right policies and legislation that reverses some of the worst of the Obama admin – but doesn’t fix the “weaponization” of the federal government – in 2016, then that election will have been a major missed opportunity.

Something in my gut says Scott W. could do it, given his experience in doing some of it already.

Okay, I’ll put my pom-poms down for now.

    I agree.
    Robin, above, is an expert regarding the educational issues. I have observed Common Core in action here in California as they impact my two granddaughters, who just finished their 7th and 9th years. The Common Core Curriculum is awful and is dumbing down the students.
    Good for Walker to take this on.

“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

10th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Please, PLEASE Scott Walker sue this all the way to the Supreme Court! It will be a teaching moment for this low-info generation that takes their constitutional freedom for granted.

We should stand with Walker.

To express my disagreement with Scott Fitzgerald, would it be over the top to say “F- Scott Fitzgerald”?

JackRussellTerrierist | July 19, 2014 at 4:17 am

One of the things I like about Walker is that he’s not a show-boater. He’s quiet, succinct and understated, and appears to have a spine of steel.