Educational Freedom: How to Achieve It

HOW TO THINK DIFFERENTLY ABOUT EDUCATION IN S.C. It’s no secret that South Carolina has some of the worst public schools and some of the lowest levels of student academic achievement in the country. The most important factors generating this failure are these: (a)  a strong reluctance to experiment in education, combined with (b) an unthinking […]

Study: More Money, No Improvement

AS EVER, THE EASY ANSWER IS THE WRONG ONE A new study by the Cato Institute reinforces the findings of SCPC and other researchers: more money doesn’t produce better results. The Cato study examines SAT scores from 1972 to 2012 in each state. Student SAT participation rates and demographics are controlled for using an improved […]

Stopping Common Core: Is It Too Late?

LAWMAKERS SHOULD  END IT – WITHOUT EQUIVOCATION AND WITHOUT DELAY When it comes to Common Core’s adoption in South Carolina, there is plenty of blame to go around. The federal government could be blamed for bribing states to adopt Common Core through Race to the Top (RTT) grants. At the state level, current and former executive branch officials, […]

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Anti-Common Core Legislation: Update

The K-12 The Education Subcommittee met Wednesday to discuss bills related to Common Core, most notably, S.300 that, as originally written, would prohibit the use of Common Core academic standards in South Carolina. The strike and insert amendment proposed by Senator Mike Fair, however, would remove this flat-out prohibition from the bill, while adding several […]

School Choice in South Carolina: 2014

THIS YEAR, AT LEAST ONE PROPOSAL IS ACTUALLY ABOUT SCHOOL CHOICE Fourteen representatives in the House came together on February 6 to co-sponsor the most significant attempt at school choice from General Assembly in recent years. The bill – H.4624 – has the potential to improve the education of, not just some, but all South […]


Education Oversight Committee Passes the Buck on Common Core

  COMMITTEE WON’T MAKE DECISION, CITIZENS PAY THE PRICE In February of 2012 the State Board of Education approved the use of SMARTER Balanced assessments – the tests made by a “consortium” of states used to assess Common Core standards. Nearly two years later, the Education Oversight Committee (EOC) has yet to approve the use of these […]

Gov. Haley’s Education Plan: More Money

THE TROUBLE IS: MORE MONEY ≠ BETTER PERFORMANCE Last week Governor Haley unveiled her K-12 Education Reform Initiative for South Carolina. The governor’s new plan is consistent with most education improvement plans introduced in South Carolina in recent decades: it ignores the single most effective reform that could be enacted, school choice. Rather than pushing for […]

classroom assessment

Rejecting Common Core – and the Structure that Made It Possible

  ‘NULLIFYING’ COMMON CORE WON’T MAKE IT GO AWAY, BUT A BILL NOW IN THE LEGISLATURE WOULD GIVE TAXPAYERS SOME SAY IN THE MATTER The first step toward removing Common Core requirements from the South Carolina education system – strangely enough – would have nothing directly to do with Common Core. A bill prefiled for […]

Stop Sign on School Bus

Can Common Core Be Stopped?

MAYBE, BUT IT MAY TAKE MORE THAN PASSING A LAW Opponents of Common Core, the nationalized set of academic standards currently being imposed on South Carolina public schools, are wondering how to stop it – or indeed if it’s too late to stop it. While four states refused to implement these standards in the first […]


What Will Our Children Learn Under Common Core? – Part II

DOES THIS SOUND LIKE A CURRICULUM YOU WOULD CHOOSE? In Part I of our analysis of Common Core-based curriculum material, we discussed some problematic lesson plans disseminated by Student Achievement Partners, a nonprofit organization founded by three contributing authors of Common Core State Standards. In the present analysis we discuss Common Core-aligned Homework/Test Questions and […]