Jeb Bush refuses to back down on Common Core

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush defended his support for Common Core school standards at a congressional fundraiser in suburban Des Moines Friday night. Other 2016 GOP hopefuls have criticized the education standards.

Charlie Neibergall/AP
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush smiles as he speaks during a reception for U.S. Rep. David Young, R-Iowa, Friday, in Urbandale, Iowa.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush says he is standing by his support for the Common Core school standards rejected by a segment of the Republican Party's most conservative members, including other potential presidential candidates.

Common Core standards are a set of voluntary reading, language arts and math goals created by a bipartisan team of governors and adopted in more than 40 states. Some Republicans view them as federally mandated curriculum, especially in light of the Obama administration's support for them.

"Raising expectations and having accurate assessments of where kids are is essential for success, and I'm not going to back down on that," Bush said during a congressional fundraiser in suburban Des Moines on Friday night.

Bush is receiving the most attention in the wide open Republican race. On the Democratic side, Hillary Rodham Clinton has a commanding lead over other potential candidates, according to polls.

Deflecting questions about why some potential Republican presidential prospects have shifted on the issue, Bush told reporters after the event: "I know what I believe. I believe in higher standards that develop critical thinking skills."

Among those changing their views of Common Core is New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who proclaimed support for the standards in 2013 but has more recently expressed concerns about them. Another one-time Common Core backer and presidential prospect, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, has been relentless in his criticism of the education standards, calling them a "scheme by the federal government to nationalize curriculum."

Headlining a fundraiser for first-term Rep. David Young, Bush was visiting to Iowa for the first time as a presidential prospect. He planned to participate in an agriculture policy forum Saturday in Des Moines and meet Republican activists in Cedar Rapids.

Bush is scheduled next weekend to visit New Hampshire, home of the first presidential primary scheduled for 2016. He planned to visit South Carolina, the second primary on the 2016 schedule, later in the month.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

QR Code to Jeb Bush refuses to back down on Common Core
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today