May 23rd, 2014
09:04 PM ET

Melinda Gates backs Common Core testing

With the school year coming to a close, there's a growing concern about the state of America's education system.

Why Common Core tests are bad

Much of it centered around the nationwide standard known as the "Common Core" - a way to evaluate students, schools and teachers.

It started under the Bush administration, but now conservatives are one of its biggest opponents.

But one woman is making it part of her life's work to support the curriculum. In an interview with CNN's Erin Burnett, Melinda Gates explains why she backs Common Core.

Filed under: Education • News
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Mary U

    Did it never occur to this arrogant woman that she and her husband are capable of being wrong? Or do they think their money and privilege give them the right to dictate what everyone else should do? Why not spend one hour actually considering why people are so opposed to this instead of dismissing the considerable opposition?

    May 27, 2014 at 12:24 am | Reply
  2. TCliff

    There is no surprise in Melinda Gates' support of the Common Core. Her foundation has invested millions, maybe billions, in their development and implementation. They are nothing more than a part of a business plan to get in on the trillion dollar education market in the US and around the world. They were developed undemocratically, unlike any standards writing process in the country. In fact, according to the body that oversees the writing of standards throughout the business world, they would not qualify as acceptable standards. Why these poorly written and developed standards were needed is unknown, as there are several states whose standards have been deemed better than the Common Core State Standards (MA, for one). That they were written AFTER states had to sign on to them as part of the bribe of Race To The Top, with no help from classroom teachers or subject specialists or child developmental experts, is another troubling aspect. The idea that school districts will be able to afford to upgrade their IT infrastructure and hardware to be able to give the tests associated with and aligned to CCSS online is laughable. All these things, and more (VAM, charters, union busting, the deprofessionalizing of the teaching profession, among others), are an integral part of CCSS. And NONE of it has been proven to help in any way to decrease the achievement gap or raise test scores or in any way improve education. Such a monumental waste of your foundation's money, public school monies, educator's time and money, can be directly tied to CCSS, and the B & M Gates Foundation. CCSS will go down (as it must) as a monumental failure and as a reminder that those with impure intentions will not prevail.

    May 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Reply
  3. mary

    Where Bill and Melinda send their own kids. An elite
    private school with no Common Core. The rich get educated, the poor get tested.


    May 24, 2014 at 12:22 pm | Reply
  4. Jen B

    She supports it, but yet her children go to a school that do not use Common Core and her children do not take these tests. As a parent- watch her actions for her own children. They are not touching Common Core with a 10-ft pole. Her advice is what she thinks is good for other peoples children.

    May 24, 2014 at 10:52 am | Reply
  5. Momoffive

    What experience does Melinda Gates have in public education? Is she an educator? Are her kids in public schools? If she believes all schools should teach by the same standards, then why aren't her children also learning by those standards? This confuses me. I heard her husband give an interview where he stated something like if all schools adopt the standards just imagine the new markets that will open up. The "new market" is our kids and the products are every book, computer, teaching workshop, that are rebranded with the Common Core label. Common Core is all about the money and the people who will make it. http://dianeravitch.net/.../krazyta-explains-what-bill.../

    May 24, 2014 at 10:41 am | Reply
  6. Najia

    Let me get this straight. She has NO teaching background, does not have a degree in education, curriculum design, nor live in the communities impacted. Her own kids attend a private school and are not subjected to this crap but for some reason she is qualified (ie: rich enough) to somehow decide on the educational projection of our country? Seriously? She is an expert because.....why.....she went to school once? Can we PLEASE show the other side of story by those of us who are actually involved in education and why Common Core is nothing more than Common Crap?? ^O^

    May 24, 2014 at 10:36 am | Reply
  7. ddermady

    We fail our children if we think all children should go to college. We fail our society. We fail democracy. One size does not fit all-my opinion.

    May 24, 2014 at 10:20 am | Reply
  8. Marla Kilfoyle

    It is interesting to me how Melinda Gates can talk about the wonder of CC yet her own children are NOT taught by it. If CC was so wonderful why doesn't she insist it be used in her children's school. Sadly, The Gates Foundation, who has financed the CC to the tune of millions and millions will talk about how wonderful it is because it is all about the money NOT the children. Let's look at all the ways that CC is not a sound educational set of standards. 1. It was NOT written by teachers. Please look here at researchers Mercedes Schneider breakdown of who wrote the CC http://deutsch29.wordpress.com/2014/04/23/those-24-common-core-2009-work-group-members/ 2. The CC was written in total privacy and secrecy. For those of us who live in a democratic society this is disturbing. I have been an educator for over 28 years, been through many educational changes, but I have never seen anything like this in my life. 3. The CC was offered as a bribe to cash strapped states for Race to the Top money. Arne Duncan and the USDOE will lead the public to believe that the CCSS were state driven. That is so far from the truth. CC was offered to the states as a bribe. States could get RTTT money if they adopted CCSS, teacher evals based on test scores and so much more. 4. The main reason that the CCSS are NOT sound education is because they have never been piloted, researched, and tweaked. Anytime standards or curriculum are rolled out they are piloted and tweaked. That didn't happen here. The roll out in NYS was a mess and over 70% of the children failed the CC exams. In fact the two experts that were brought in to sign off on the ELA and Math standards refused to do so (Sandra Stotsky and James Milgram) See here http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2012/12/questionable-quality-of-the-common-core-english-language-arts-standards IN closing, I would ask Melinda and Bill Gates to leave our schools alone and stop pretending like you think you know what is BEST for other people's children. If CC is so wonderful demand it be placed in your children's school and give us our schools back.

    May 24, 2014 at 10:12 am | Reply
  9. ronkabidy

    Mrs Gates education degree must come in handy as she discusses the CC$$. OH WAIT... She is NOT an educator? OH WAIT, she does NOT have a teaching degree? Well, she MUST have a curriculum degree to speak on curriculum! OH WAIT, she DOESN'T? Well, at least her family does not have any money invested in the passing of the CC$$ curriculum! OH WAIT......She DOES? Please get NON educators out of education! ^0^

    May 24, 2014 at 9:58 am | Reply
  10. Emily

    I'm wondering what part of her background makes her the least bit qualified to tell teachers how to teach?

    And more importantly, what qualifications did those who wrote the Common Core have? Who is really profiting from the implementation of them?

    May 24, 2014 at 9:48 am | Reply
  11. anna ibrahim

    maybe this is self-preservation. She has to live with Bill. What happens if his latest all consuming "passion" comes to nothing. How can she possibly console him? I sure do wish they would both take their money, and disappear.

    May 24, 2014 at 8:06 am | Reply

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