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Letter to the editor: State is held hostage to NCLB waiver

Friday, May 23, 2014 - 12:01 am

I about choked while reading (a recent) News-Sentinel article that indicated Indiana is in danger of losing its NCLB waiver despite adopting Common Core Light.

Gov. Pence must feel like a dunce after being outplayed by the Democrats. He thought if he aligned with college and career readiness, the Obama administration would be satisfied. He underestimated their Machiavellian lust for power. For them it is not enough that they have Indiana’s children; they want to make an example of Indiana and humiliate Gov. Pence by making him kiss Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s, or is it President Obama’s, ring. That way the rest of the nation will understand exactly who is driving the school bus — the feds, not the states.

Gov. Pence was outmaneuvered because he didn’t take a stand for our children, our schools or our freedoms. Now, not only has he disappointed his conservative base, President Obama is going to punish him by threatening to withhold the NCLB waiver, making him look weak and helpless in the public’s eyes instead of a strong leader fighting for what is right. Why else did the Obama administration withhold the report that Indiana was in danger of losing its NCLB waiver until after we had adopted the new college and career standards?

What new demands will the U.S. Department of Education demand or extort in order for Indiana to retain the NCLB waiver this time? The last time it was Common Core, the new national exams and expansive/privacy invading data collecting and tracking of our children — apparently that wasn’t enough.

Glenna L. Jehl