Coming weeks are critical


Reinhold Matay

COLUMBIA — A bill up for debate by a Senate panel would bar South Carolina from implementing national education standards in math and reading.

Sen. Mike Fair’s proposal set for discussion Thursday would block standards known as Common Core. South Carolina’s education board adopted the curriculum in July 2010. Full implementation is set for 2014-15.

Common Core outlines what skills students in kindergarten through 12th grade nationwide should learn to be ready for college and careers, replacing the standards that now vary state-to-state. Forty-five states have adopted the curriculum. The voluntary initiative was led by governors and chief state school officers.

But Gov. Nikki Haley supports Fair’s bill. In a letter to Fair, Haley says South Carolina shouldn’t relinquish control to a consensus of states any more than the federal government.