- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 5, 2015

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A Republican lawmaker has asked the state Supreme Court to determine whether West Virginia can legally participate in Common Core, as state GOP leaders look to repeal the educational standards next year.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail (https://bit.ly/1UnxC6a ) reports that the petition says the standards violate state law and the U.S. Constitution, which requires congressional approval of agreements between states.

Berkeley County Del. Mike Folk filed the petition Friday. He has filed a similar lawsuit in Berkeley County Circuit Court, which lawyers for Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s administration pegged as “procedurally deficient and substantively ill-conceived.”

State Schools Superintendent Michael Martirano said if the high court accepts the petition, he’s confident justices will uphold the Board of Education’s authority to develop and implement the Next Generation Content Standards and Objectives for English Language Arts and Mathematics.

“For the sake of our students, let’s focus public interest and debate on the quality and merits of the individual standards,” Martirano said in a statement Wednesday.

On Monday, Senate President Bill Cole, R-Mercer, and House Speaker Tim Armstead, R-Kanawha, wrote the National Governors Association to revoke the legislative leadership’s participation in an agreement concerning Common Core among states.

The 2009 agreement was signed by former Democratic legislative and executive branch leaders, including: Tomblin, then Senate president; then-Gov. Joe Manchin; Rick Thompson, former House speaker; and former state Superintendent of Schools Steven Paine.

Cole is advocating for Common Core’s repeal as a 2016 gubernatorial candidate. The next 60-day legislative session begins in January, and a legislative interim committee is studying the standards. The state Department of Education is doing its own review.

“We must find a way to improve our student achievement and fix our education system, and the way to begin that progress is to eliminate Common Core in West Virginia,” Cole said in a news release Tuesday.

Efforts by the GOP-led Legislature to repeal Common Core failed last legislative session.

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Information from: The Charleston Gazette-Mail, https://wvgazettemail.com.


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