Feds Threaten to Cut Aid If “Too Many” Students Opt Out of Common Core Tests

Photo via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 3.0 BR)
Photo via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 3.0 BR)

So that didn’t take long. Thanks to the Republican Congress, which just decided to pass a “reform” of No Child Left Behind that Obama applauded, the Obama administration has a big, new club to swing at school districts: threatening to withhold their federal funding if “too many” students opt out of the tests.

The U.S. Department of Education warned states this week that federal school aid may be withheld withheld next year if less than 95 percent of students take government-mandated exams.

In New York, Title I funding that exceeds $1.1 billion could be at risk if the opt outs continue. The issue is pronounced in New York: 20 percent of students in grades 3-8 opted out of the tests last April in protest to the controversial Common Core exams.

“A high-quality, annual statewide assessment system that includes all students is essential to provide local leaders, educators, and parents with the information they need to identify the resources and supports that are necessary to help every student succeed in school and in a career,” the U.S. Department of Education wrote to state education departments Tuesday.

You called it, Emmett.

This is the same Obama Department of Education that is threatening to cut funds for public schools in America if they refuse to let transgendered biological males shower naked with teenage girls.

At least to do that, the Obama administration had to make up laws. On Common Core, Paul Ryan’s Congress gave them the law to swing as a club against Common Core moms.

Abolish the Department of Education. And primary Paul Ryan.

On the budget deal, he had an excuse. On this, there is no excuse. There was no need to pass a new education bill the liberals love. You could have waited for a new president to reform NCLB. But the Republican leadership in Washington just wanted to sell out Common Core moms.

I hope they live to regret it.

Maggie Gallagher is a senior fellow at the American Principles Project.