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South Carolina standards?

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South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley came out this week in favor of rolling back Common Core standards in her state during a speech delivered Thursday to the Greenville County Republican Women’s Club.

In part, here’s what she had to say:

We don’t ever want to educate South Carolina children like they educate California children. We want to educate South Carolina children on South Carolina standards, not anyone else’s standards.

and adding:

We are telling the legislature: Roll back Common Core. Let’s take it back to South Carolina standards.

What standards? According to an annual report from Education Week that ranks state education across various fields, South Carolina was 26th in overall performance, with exactly the same ranking as the national average at 76.9. In 2013, South Carolina ranked 40th in the “Chance for Success” category and in 2013, the state was 45th in the nation in kindergarten- through 12th grade achievement.

The state adopted Common Core standards back in 2010, so not only would nullifying the new curriculum likely deal a blow for education in a state that has yet to achieve anything resembling widespread success, much less excellence, it would waste a lot of money already spent at the local level implementing the standards. As the article pointed out, Anderson School District 2 has allocated $350,000 in taxpayer money toward Common Core standard implementation. Many other districts have no doubt followed suit. I wonder how Haley would explain to her constituents how squandering resources is going to further education in the state.

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Written by Jeremy

January 17th, 2014 at 9:54 pm

Nikki … Paley??

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If you haven’t heard of her yet, Nikki Haley is the next in a series of Sarah Palin clones — that would be to say, very unremarkable and obscurant — who are making inroads this primary election season.

If you’ve heard one speech from someone in the Tea Party camp, you’ve heard them all, so here’s Haley speaking Wednesday in Columbia, S.C., following the Tuesday vote which placed her just 2 percentage points back from winning the primary outright against Rep. Gresham Barrett (R-Westminster). The two will enter a run-off on June 22 to decide the the Republican gubernatorial candidate for governor.

What is remarkable about Haley and for what I will be proud is my home state’s ability to A, elect its first female to the highest office in the state and B, to elect a non-white (Haley is Indian-American). The New York Times offers this piece on Haley, which at its start, offers this bit of lucid imagery:

Credit: AP

As she entered the top-floor suite of a downtown business club here on Tuesday, Nikki Haley passed an oil painting of nine former South Carolina governors. All were men, all were white, depicted seated along a long table like a political version of “The Last Supper.”

But — and there is almost always a “but” — Haley is riding the far right train to, not just win on the Republican ticket, but to attempt to trade or change the state’s overriding Republicanism to conservatism, whatever that might mean. And in South Carolina, a state whose elected officials routinely ignore the interests of their minority constituents (In nastier cases, hostile to them), Haley’s tired and boring “us versus the establishment” rhetoric can get votes every time.

So, while it will be historic, and possibly refreshing, to have a female governor in a state that has historically trampled on the rights of every race and gender — except white and affluent males — it will not be a surprise and not terribly, if at all, dissimilar to having Palin herself (One can catch glimpses of the Palin charm in Haley’s speech, minus the Alaskan vernacular. She must be practicing).

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