Corbett facing questions over education review in Pa. House

    Pennsylvania House lawmakers plan hearings to grill the Corbett administration on its plan to review state academic standards implemented last March.

    Gov. Tom Corbett recently called for a review of the Pennsylvania Core, so-named because it blends national benchmarks called Common Core and objectives designed by commonwealth officials.

    The confusion over education standards all goes back to their name, said state Rep. Seth Grove, R-York.

    “When the administration decided to keep Common Core in the name of the academic standards they were moving forward with, it confused a lot of people because they assumed that the administration was adopting Common Core and not moving away from it,” Grove said.

    Critics have said Corbett is pandering to conservative groups suspicious of the national Common Core’s displacement of local control over schools.

    A state Department of Education spokesman said the agency doesn’t actually want to reopen the academic standards themselves, because it would cause problems for related education policies, like school assessments and teacher evaluations.

    The Corbett administration said it’s considering only changes to the fine details of what shows up on student tests.

    The standards themselves set expectations for the skills students should master by the end of each grade level.

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