Foes, backers of Idaho ‘Common Core’ square off

BOISE, Idaho (AP) – Idaho’s new ‘Common Core’ standards drew a crowd in the Capitol’s auditorium for debate over the merits of this disputed educational movement.

Backers say they’ll boost students’ proficiency, with foes arguing they’re too tough.

Wednesday’s event was orchestrated by the Senate and House Education committees.

It was also carefully scripted, with advance questions submitted for Wednesday’s panel of six to answer.

One member, Stephanie Zimmerman, a leader of Common-Core critic Idahoans for Local Education, charged kindergarten students are now being asked to solve complex algebraic equations.

Zimmerman says that’s “not developmentally appropriate.”

Meanwhile, a lingering specter of a multi-national force behind Common Core’s adoption in many states also emerged.

However, Idaho Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna insisted “the United Nations did not play any role” in developing the standards.

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