The Corner

What Does It Mean to ‘Repeal’ Common Core?

Also at the Washington Post, education writer Valerie Strauss takes aim at Senator Cruz (disclosure) for suggesting in his launch speech that he favors “repealing every word of Common Core.” Strauss writes, “Cruz apparently thinks that the Common Core is embedded in a federal law that can be repealed. It isn’t.”

That is the impression that Cruz left, but I’m sure — having checked with an aide — that what he has in mind is getting rid of all federal inducements for states to adopt or keep Common Core. The Obama administration used federal grants and regulatory waivers (the latter, oddly, unmentioned by Strauss) to encourage state participation. Cruz wants to end that.

That appears to be the consensus position of Republicans. Jeb Bush, the most pro–Common Core of the presidential candidates, is saying much the same thing. The difference appears to be that Cruz seems to be recommending that the states ditch the Common Core standards, while Bush is recommending that they either keep them or draw up higher ones. Neither of them appears to want the federal government to stay involved in that decision.

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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