Chamber Watch: NC Chamber Of Commerce Fear mongers On #HB1061

Chamber Watch: Keeping an eye on the Chambers of Commerce Core

Today’s article is on The NC Chamber of Commerce. Yesterday the NC General Assembly’s House passed HB 1061, Replace Common Core To Meet NC’s Needs. The response of the NC Chamber of Commerce was to fear monger:


The NC Chamber has pushed the flawed and experimental Common Core as some kind of magic bullet that will create this amazing “21st Century Workforce” without one shred of evidence that these standards do anything they claim to.  In fact, the evidence is to the contrary:

The math sets our kids back a minimum of two years. That’s not conjecture, that’s from Dr. James Milgram – the only mathematician on the Common Core Standards Validation committee. Dr. Milgram refused to sign off on the standards.

StopTheChamberOfCommerceCoreThe standards will not help our kids achieve STEM success. This is especially troubling since the leader of the NC Chamber’s “Hire Standards” is Karl Rectanus — a man who seems to be engaged in STEM debate with the NC STEM Community Collaborative.  It’s also worth noting Mr. Rectanus has monetary skin in the game as co-founder of Lea(R)n – Clinical Trials for Education Technology.
The standards goal is to prepare kids for a two year non-selective college, not a four year degree.

The standards are  largely age and developmentally inappropriate in the elementary levels, especially in K-3 where they serve as a mental beat down of our youngest learners. This is unsurprising since not a single Early Education professional was on the creation team.

The concentration on selective and subjective “informational texts” versus classic literature is the opposite of what current research tells us.  Informational text use over the classics teaches kids what to think, not how to think critically for themselves.

The data collection is seems to be most coveted by the supporters of Common Core. Tracking your kid from cradle to workforce seems to be the goal here — because, somehow, your child being a data point is what education is now about.  Newsflash to the powers that be: no amount of data is going to tell you how any given individual child learns, adapts and grows. The same applies to teachers. Learning is dynamic, not a set of static data sets.

The standards are copyrighted. We cannot change them or alter them. We are required to adhere to them 100%. NC may add an addition 15% to these standards, however, that 15% will not be tested on. With the amount already being pushed on our kids and the requirements on our teachers, what teacher do you know that will add what is missing?  That also leads to the next question, why are we able to add up to 15%? One can clearly take this as an admission these standards are lacking and would require additional support to make them work.

Common Core is not higher standards. They are standards set to train the middle 40% for a 2 year degree at a non-selective college, while keeping those who could advance running at the same pace as that middle 40%. Those who can’t keep up? Left in the dust. Common Core has no plan for the ones who can’t keep up with the middle 40%.

Common Core is not a “floor” for achievement, it’s a sub-basement.  

North Carolina can do far better than Common Core.
Sorry, NC Chamber — our kids and their education are not for sale.



Why We Keep An Eye On The Chambers Of Commerce Core
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is heavily vested in promoting and pushing Common Core. As push back has grown, Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan has been pushing the US Chamber to apply more pressure. State and regional Chambers have followed this lead, blanketing papers with op-eds, running television ads and billboards. In North Carolina, the NC Chamber of Commerce has been documented as a clear supporter of Common Core and have created a special education initiative called “Hire Standards” to push Common Core.

How big and hard is the NC Chamber pushing Common Core? Public Schools Forum NC board member and former NC Legislator, Gene Arnold, said outright on local television show, NCSPIN, that the Chamber would choke off campaign contributions to candidates who did not support the Common Core. Direct quote:

“The big stick the business people are using is the threat with campaign contributions could slow down.” – Gene Arnold, NCSPIN 5/15/14 (video)


Read about the US Chamber of Commerce:

Read about the Chamber in North Carolina:

Read about the Chamber in other states:

Cross Posted at

Thanks to Carolina Plott Hound For Linking!

About A.P. Dillon

A.P. Dillon is a freelance journalist and is currently writing at The North State Journal. She resides in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Find her on Twitter: @APDillon_
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