Will legislators revisit Common Core?

Some 200 people attended an anti-Common Core meeting in Boise Saturday — joined by about a half dozen legislators.

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Rep. Lawerence Denney, R-Midvale

And two lawmakers told the Idaho Statesman’s Bill Roberts that the 2014 Legislature might take another look at the new Idaho Core Standards in math and English language arts.

“I don’t think any of us really knew what was in them,” said Rep. Lawerence Denney, R-Midvale. “(With) the public outcry we are hearing now, I think we need to revisit and look at them.”

“We need to make sure we have Idaho’s best interests at heart,” said Rep. Janie Ward-Engelking, D-Boise, a retired teacher. “If that means getting people together and addressing concerns, then we should do it.”

Ward-Engelking, a first-term lawmaker, wasn’t in the Legislature in 2011, when the House and Senate education committees approved Common Core. Denney was speaker of the House at the time.

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Rep. Janie Ward-Engelking, D-Boise

Schools are proceeding to start teaching to the standards in 2013-14 — four months before the 2014 Legislature convenes. Schools are scheduled to field-test Common Core assessments in the spring of 2014; the tests will count one year later.

School officials aren’t waiting on the Legislature either. When district and charter school superintendents hold their annual meeting in Boise Monday, they’ll spend the morning discussing Common Core and assessments.

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More reading: Here’s our profile of Stephanie Zimmerman, a mother of eight who helped organize Saturday’s rally. And here’s a piece about a broad-based coalition banding together in support of the standards.