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American Principles Project "Disappointed" with Passage of Every Student Succeeds Acxt (ESSA

Emmett McGroarty: “Republicans should have listened to the pro-Constitution,  anti-Common Core grassroots groups.” 

Washington, D.C.– The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which reauthorizes the failed No Child Left Behind statute, was quickly passed through Congress and signed into law by President Obama just a few moments ago. Emmett McGroarty, Director of Education at American Principles Project, released the following statement on the passage of ESSA:

“American Principles Project is disappointed that Congress has passed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) to reauthorize the failed No Child Left Behind statute. The claims of Republican leadership that the bill will transfer power back to the states are largely illusory. 

“It is particularly noteworthy and even shocking that so many Republicans voted in favor of this bill. Apparently they did not consider it a red flag that every Democrat in Congress supported it, that Barack Obama supported it, that Arne Duncan supported it, that Nancy Pelosi supported it, and that the owners of the Common Core national standards – National Governors Association and Council of Chief State School Officers – supported it. The suggestion that these rabidly pro-Common Core individuals and organizations would support a bill that truly restores state autonomy in education and unravels all they’ve worked for is nothing short of delusional.

“Republicans should have listened to the more than 200 pro-Constitution, anti-Common Core grassroots groups that laid out in detail their objections to this bill and practically begged their “conservative” elected officials to pay attention. Instead, all but 64 members of the House and 12 senators ignored their knowledgeable constituents and did the bidding of the White House and the Republican leadership. 

“Perhaps the most galling aspect of ESSA’s progression is the secretive, underhanded manner in which the bill was advanced. ESSA was written by unknown parties, working behind closed doors with no notice to the public, and was released only two days before the House vote. Representatives and concerned citizens could not possibly read and analyze over 1,000 pages of text before the vote was taken. Then the Senate rushed through a vote only a week later. This process was obviously designed by Senate leadership and new Speaker Paul Ryan – in brazen violation of his recent promises of transparency – to ram the bill through before opposition could mobilize.

“American parents are not fooled by this charade — nor will they forget who was responsible.”

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