Common Core: Why are 10th graders reading 50 Shades of Grey type books?

December 5, 2013

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BISMARCK, N.D. – Common Core. Is it a good thing or a bad thing?

Recently, the ND Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler wrote a letter to the Grand Forks Herald in an attempt to clear up many of the myths around Common Core Standards versus what many people refer to as the “Common Core Curriculum.”  In order to create some context for tonight’s conversation, I would like to share some of her letter with you. She wrote:

“Common Core Standards are not a curriculum. Curriculum – the materials, resources, textbooks, unit plans, lesson plans and so on – is decided by local school leaders with community input. Curriculum choices of a school are and always will be decided by the local school leaders in communities across North Dakota.”

ND Common CoreSo what she is saying is that right now, North Dakota is part of the Common Core Standards, but the curriculum (i.e. textbooks and unit plans) being used to teach your child is and always will be decided by local school leaders.  PLEASE remember this because this statement if very important for what I am about to show you in a few moments.  Before I do, Kirsten Baesler also stated this in her letter:

“So, after meticulous review, North Dakota adopted the Common Core State Standards in 2011.”

Please, keep in mind that our Superintendent of Public Schools just said: “after Meticulous review” and “local leaders always have and always will determine the textbooks being used to teach your child.”

So if that is the case, why in the world did local leaders choose the book Dreaming in Cuban to educate our 10th graders?

How old are you in 10th grade?  Fourteen or fifteen years old?

I want to share an excerpt with you from this book, but I want to warn you that what I am about to share with includes graphic text and content.  So if you have someone in the room, according to Common Core, that is 9th grade or younger, please ask them to leave the room before I share the following excerpt with you.  Keep in mind, this is a book approved by the Common Core Standards to educate our 10th graders.  I cant wait to hear how you feel about this:

“Hugo and Felicia stripped in their room, dissolving easily into one another, and made love against the whitewashed walls. Hugo bit Felicia’s breast and left purplish bands of bruises on her upper thighs.

TOO EXPLICIT FOR TELEVISION

“You’re my b****,” Hugo said, groaning.

In the morning he left, promising to return in the summer.”

Is that appropriate for the 10th grade?

In the video above I’m joined by Superintendent of Fargo Public Schools Dr. Jeff Schatz and a member of the ND House Education Committee Rep. Brenda Heller (R-Beulah) to discuss Common Core in North Dakota schools. Please watch the discussion.

Authored by Chris Berg – Say Anything Blog

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