It was just a few years ago that Arizona took a positive step forward with the new academic standards in English, language, arts and math: the Arizona College and Career Ready Standards (ACCRS). Since its adoption in 2010, the ACCRS [better known as Common Core] have been implemented throughout the state’s public schools in grades K-12.
During the current legislative session, some Arizona lawmakers are seeking to roll back the progress Arizona’s students and teachers have made with the higher academic standards over the past five years. The House recently passed HB2190, a bill that would prohibit the use of the current academic standards and stipulate that the Arizona State Board of Education redevelop the statewide academic standards. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.
The consequences of HB2190 would be detrimental to students, teachers, taxpayers, the workforce, economic development and the local economy. In addition to the wasted time, money and resources, HB2190 would cause a sharp blow to student achievement. The repeal of Arizona’s current standards would also create significant disruption in the classrooms, create more bureaucracy for educators and usurp the authority of the state board of education.
Our state has consistently been ranked as one of the lowest education systems in the country. It’s time to make education a top priority in Arizona. The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce supports higher education standards and welcomes improvements to the ACCRS. We want to see improving results in our K-12 education system. Every child deserves a world-class education that prepares them for the future. It is imperative that we raise the expectations of our state’s education system so our students can be more internationally competitive and be a key part of a skilled workforce.
It’s easy to advocate for your child, your school, and all students in Arizona. Engage in the discussion and raise your voices in support of the current academic standards. Take the next steps by learning more at www.expectmorearizona.org and voicing your opposition to HB2190.
Higher education standards will secure the future of Arizona’s students and also the economic future of our state.
— Mike Huckins is vice president of public affairs at the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce.