Amid the outcry against increased federal intrusion in daily life comes another telltale sign "Big Brother" government is hitting closer to home for moms and dads: The effort to create nationwide education standards.
Known as "Common Core" (short for Common Core States Standard Initiative), the benchmarks provide a framework for what students should know from Kindergarten through 12th grade. For now, they're focused on English and math, but other efforts to promote national science and social studies guidelines aren't far behind. At least 45 states and the District of Columbia have adopted Common Core since the final version was released in June 2010. The federal government wants every state to be using it by the 2014-15 school year. To date, New York and Kentucky have already begun using the standards in their tests.
Read the complete article, which originally appeared in the October 2013 issue of Focus on the Family
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Wondering about the impact that the new "Common Core" standards—which will guide what's taught about math and English in most public schools—will have on your local education system? What about the impact on private schools and home schooling families?
Focus on the Family's Candi Cushman explains what's at stake.
For more in-depth information, read "Education Without Representation."
News outlets have promoted the unveiling of "national sexuality education standards."
At first glance, this might seem intimidating to parents who assume "national standards" refers to something mandated by the government—whether parents like it or not. However it's a misleading title. What it actually amounts to is a "wish list" put together by some of the largest "safe sex," abortion and homosexual-advocacy groups in the nation. These groups are using this marketing campaign to get their agenda promoted in your local schools. Upon examining these so-called standards, the first thing one notices is the promoters, developers and "advisory committee" members attributed in the report, include:
So what do these groups actually want taught in schools? Read more.
At Focus on the Family, we believe that children are a cherished gift from the Lord—and that parents are the ones primarily responsible for guiding and preparing them for a life of service to God and to humanity. Parents have a God-ordained right and responsibility to determine what is best for their children.
In the majority of cases, parents and legal guardians are the ones who are closest emotionally, mentally and spiritually to their children and the most in tune with their needs. Given their intimate knowledge of their children, they should have the protected ability to direct and give guidance concerning their children's educational experience.
This includes the ability to determine when, how and if their children are introduced to controversial sexual topics—as well as other educational philosophies that may conflict with families' deeply held Judeo-Christian values and principles.
Protecting parents' rights in education also protects a self-governing society by safeguarding against an intrusive government school system that could eventually infringe on religious freedom.
We also recognize that these rights have limits, and we would never condone the abuse of any child—whether verbal, physical, sexual or emotional—or parental neglect.
We believe these principles are rooted in legal history, social science data and Judeo-Christian traditions.
Scriptures, such as these, remind us of parents' spiritual responsibility to guide and protect their children:
Social Science Data
Research has shown that parents are one of the most influential factors in a child's academic success. Read more.
You may be teaching your children or grandchildren a Judeo-Christian based point of view at home. Yet, when they go to school, they could encounter something drastically different than—or even opposed to—what they're learning from you and their spiritual leaders at church.
The good news is, you are not alone.
Focus on the Family is providing a free how-to guide for parents, which equips you to safeguard your kids and protect your God-given parental rights. Get started using these FREE parent tools today!