Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Malloy: I Didn't Bring That Ugly Girl to the Prom

Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy has joined the parade of politicians working to backpedal like a boss away from the Common Core.

On the CTMonitor site, Jacqueline Rabe Thomas recaps Malloy's Monday interview on NPR.

Malloy does his best to create fear and trepidation for anybody considering an opt-out for testing, and his best includes raising the specter of the feds cracking down. "If too many students opt out," he says in what I imagine to be his spooky voice, "the federal government will take our money and find us in violation of No Child Left Behind. I hear that Washington State is going to lose $40 million for losing their waiver, and we don't want to do that!"

This is, at best, a fuzzy version of the truth, but it is actually an interesting invitation to a cost/benefits analysis. Will it cost Connecticut more to continue complying with the Duncan Waiver Edict than it would cost them to stay in compliance? Because "Spend fifty dollars or else I will fine you ten" is not all that compelling an argument.

But Malloy seems to know he's on shaky ground because instead of doubling down on his federal oogie-boogerie, he throws DWE under the bus.

I didn't adopt Common Core. My predecessor did. Like handling the deficit, I was also handed the problem of seeing this implemented.

Well, that certainly speaks to Malloy's great confidence in the value of the CCSS. "The Common Core: As Appealing As Massive Budget Deficits" would make an awesome slogan for the standards, though I'm guessing we won't be seeing it a lot, and Malloy will probably not get his invitation to the next CCSS Boosters Ball.

Thomas wraps the piece up with appropriate journalistic dryness:

While former Gov. M. Jodi Rell entered the state into an agreement with other states to implement Common Core, the Malloy administration signed an agreement in 2012 with the federal government to implement the new standards and tests in order to receive a federal waiver to the No Child Left Behind law.

While we're rejecting slogans, we can probably throw out "Dannel Malloy: Because Courage and Truth-telling Are Overrated" as a campaign slogan.

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