The state would move away from controversial Common Core education standards and replace them with curriculum guides written by Indiana officials under a bill that passed the Senate on Tuesday.
The Republican-backed measure passed 36-12.
Sen. Scott Schneider, R-Indianapolis, said the legislation is a culmination of the time spent discussing the issues in a committee last summer and the testimony from Hoosier parents and teachers.
“This bill puts together the capstone and speaks as a legislature to the process that was actually already started, pursuant to (House Bill) 1427 last year.”
That 2013 legislation paused the implementation of Common Core, which is a set of standards originally written by officials from several states but adopted by the administration of President Barack Obama. Last year’s bill also called for lawmakers and state education officials to reconsider the State Board of Education’s adoption of the standards.
That study is not complete but supporters of the bill say they’ve learned enough to know Common Core isn’t right for Indiana.
Still, Sen. Earline Rogers, D- Gary, said last year’s law was not a departure from Common Core, but a pause.
“For me, Common Core makes sense,” Rogers said.
“We’re always concerned about the money involved in education,” she said. “This change that we’re making now is going to cost the state $24 million.”
That’s the estimated one-time cost for Indiana to develop its own standards and testing program.
The bill now moves to the House where Speaker Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, has said he would prefer Indiana to create its own education standards.
“This started as two parents in my district concerned with what their kids were being taught and what their kids came home with as homework in their backpacks.”
“I think this is an important milestone in the state of Indiana. I think this is a benefit for all of us.”