Political Notebook

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Hoosiers support Common Core, poll says

A new poll released today shows a solid majority of Hoosiers support the Common Core State Standards being re-evaluated by the legislature.

The poll comes as the last legislative study committee is scheduled for Tuesday in which recommendations are expected.

Public Opinion Strategies, a firm that has polled for the Indiana Republican Party, surveyed 500 likely voters on behalf of Stand for Children. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.38 percent.

Less than one in five voters have seen, read or heard "a lot" about Common Core standards. That led the pollster to read a brief explanation of them. That explanation does not include any of the criticism being leveled at the standards, and doesn't point out that a number of states have pulled out or are reconsidering the standards.

"The Common Core State Standards have been adopted by forty-five states, including Indiana, which participated in their development with state governors, state school chiefs, and teachers involved in writing and reviewing them. The goal of the standards is to help all students have the knowledge and skills they need in English and math and that students would be held to consistent standards so that they will be prepared for their next steps after high school, whether they choose a college or career path."

After hearing that description, 68 percent of those polled favored them with 24 percent opposed.

The vast majority of Hoosiers – 89 percent - say the public education system in Indiana needs change.

Common Core was adopted in 2010 under the leadership of former Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett. The Indiana legislature placed it under review this year after concerns were raised by parents and other groups about the standards.

The Indiana State Board of Education has the final say on the standards according to Indiana law.

To contact Niki Kelly email her at nkelly@jg.net or follow her on Twitter @nkellyatJG.

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