JACKSON, Miss. (Feb. 12, 2015) – Two bills introduced in the Mississippi House would withdraw the state from Common Core standards, an important step toward nullifying nationalized education in the state.

House Bill 195 (HB195) was introduced by Rep. Becky Currie (R-Brookhaven). House Bill 246 (HB246) was introduced by Rep. William Arnold (R-Booneville). Both bills were introduced on Feb. 8. The legislation would void Common Core standards and create a framework to establish state standards to replace them.

The bills contain similar language and read, in part:

Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, the State Board of Education and the State Department of Education shall cease the implementation and use of the Common Core State Standards as of the effective date of this section…

No curriculum standards developed outside the State of Mississippi, including, but not limited to, the Next Generation Science Standards, the National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies, the National Health Education Standards, and the National Sexuality Education Standards, and no standards that use the same model frameworks as such standards developed primarily by entities outside the State of Mississippi, may be adopted or implemented without public hearings held in each congressional district, an open comment period of one (1) year, and open hearings before a joint committee composed of the House Education Committee and Senate Education Committee, followed by an act of the Legislature. The board shall post notice of each hearing on the department’s website and in a newspaper of general circulation in the respective congressional district.

The state board of education is responsible for administrating the new curriculum under the guidelines stated in the legislation. Provisions in HB195 and HB246 also protect the personally identifiable information from children and teachers while explicitly banning participation in federal programs designed to harvest this data.

While these bills are powerful steps toward permanently ending Common Core in Mississippi, the process it not without its potential pitfalls. As Shane Vander Hart at Truth in American Education said about a similar bill passed in Tennessee last year, many Common Core replacement bills end up being little more than “rebranded” versions of the same program. Even if the new state standards completely reject Common Core, it doesn’t mean the state won’t continue to allow the federal government to influence its education system. It will require public and legislative vigilance to completely push the feds out of education in Mississippi.

Common Core was intended to create nationwide education standards. While touted as a state initiative through the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), the U.S. Department of Education was heavily involved behind the scenes. Up until recently, the DoE tied the grant of waivers from the No Child Left Behind Act to adoption of Common Core, using the standards as powerful strings to influence state educational policy. The Every Student Succeeds Act passed by Congress this month now prohibits the DoE from attempting to “influence, incentivize, or coerce State adoption of the Common Core State Standards … or any other academic standards common to a significant number of States.”

Even with the federal strings cut from Common Core for the time being, it is still imperative for each state to adopt its own standards. The feds can once again use these national standards to meddle in state education at any time if they remain in place. Just as importantly, one-size-fits-all standard simply don’t benefit children. State and local governments should remain in full control of their own educational systems.

Rejecting nationalized education standards is the first step toward bringing true academic choice, and freedom. Passage of this legislation into law represents a positive step forward for the people of Mississippi and a path for other states to follow.


HB195 and HB246 must pass the House Education Committee before they can receive votes in the full House.

If you live in Mississippi: click HERE and follow the instructions to help get these bills passed.

If you live in another state: click HERE for information on Common Core initiatives in your state.

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