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GOP leaders meet in Tennessee amid the Common Core discord

by ERIK SCHELZIG Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and two top Tennessee Republicans are meeting at an upscale Nashville hotel Wednesday to discuss education policies that have caused divisions within the GOP around the country - including within the Tennessee General Assembly located across the street.

Bush, whose potential presidential aspirations have been the subject of intense speculation, is being joined by Sen. Lamar Alexander and Gov. Bill Haslam at the event, hosted by business groups that support Common Core standards spelling out what math and reading skills students should have in each grade.

An increasing chorus of critics sees the standards as a federal takeover of local classrooms. Republicans in the Tennessee House last week bucked the governor's wishes by approving a two-year delay in the implementation of the curriculum and testing standards.

The governor's GOP colleagues took that step despite Haslam's earlier admonition that derailing or delaying Common Core would be "exactly the wrong thing to do."

The policy discussion with Bush and Alexander comes a day after Haslam embarked on a hastily organized series of school visits around the state to try to drum up support for the program.

Alexander, a former two-term governor and U.S. education secretary, is running for a third term in the Senate this year. Alexander has voiced support for education initiatives originating with the states, but has introduced legislation seeking to keep federal waiver decisions from being based on participation in programs like Common Core.

Comments made about this article - 1 Total

posted on: Thursday, March 27, 2014 8:18 AM

Title: Former high school teacher and counselor

Jeb, please take another look at Common Core. You are on the wrong side of this one!

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