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ERIC Number: ED530054
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Apr-21
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Review of "Behind the Curtain: Assessing the Case for National Standards"
Mathis, William J.
Education and the Public Interest Center
President Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan have called for national "common core" curriculum standards. Some have argued that national standards are essential for reform, as they provide coherence, rigor, logic and organization. Others have contended they will narrow the curriculum, seize control from local districts and states, and distort the purposes of education. The Cato Institute's Neal McCluskey argues that national standards will have only limited, if any, effect. The report contends there is only a weak theoretical case in favor of national standards and that the structure of schooling might be the real problem. It concludes that market models are the best way to reform education. While providing a useful summary and critique of the research on national standards, the non-sequitur in the report (standards do not work; therefore the free market will) presents readers with a conclusion not supported by the report's evidence. Thus, the fundamental policy conclusions are not sustained. (Contains 5 notes.) [This paper reviews the following report: "Behind the Curtain: Assessing the Case for National Curriculum Standards. Policy Analysis. No. 661" (ED520384).]
Education and the Public Interest Center. School of Education, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309. Tel: 303-447-EPIC; Fax: 303-492-7090; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice
Authoring Institution: University of Colorado at Boulder, Education and the Public Interest Center; Arizona State University, Education Policy Research Unit