Common Core hearings stacked with experts paid by Tea Party

Half the experts scheduled to testify on new Common Core teaching standards this week were handpicked by state Tea Party activists critical of the new program, according to a chief organizer.

The Senate Education Committee is conducting hearings Thursday and Friday to review the controversial new standards after tea party groups began criticizing the program for nationalizing education, passing the costs down to taxpayers and using data mining to invade individual privacy.

Comments from committee members could reveal whether lawmakers — including Republicans swept into office by grassroots tea party groups — have the stomach to challenge the new standards endorsed by the Haslam administration.

The 9.12 Project Tennessee and the Eagle Forum are paying travel and lodging costs for five of the seven experts to attend the hearings here, according to Katherine Hudgins, a chief organizer for Tennessee Against Common Core. She has also said the groups are “developing an army” of people who can put pressure on the legislature to opt out of Common Core.

Below is a list of speakers, furnished by the Senate Republican Caucus. Asterisk denotes tea party speakers:  

TESTIFYING ON DATA

Ms. Jane Robbins, American Principles Project*

TESTIFYING ON THE TENNESSEE STORY

Ms. Jamie Woodson, President and Chief Executive Office of SCORE

TESTIFYING ON COST

Mr. Ted Rebarber*

HIGHER EDUCATION AND ASSESSMENT

Dr. Candice McQueen

COMMON CORE OVERVIEW

Ms. Joy Pullman, Heartland Institute*

TESTIFYING ON STANDARDS

Mr. Mike Petrilli, Executive Vice President of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute

TESTIFYING ON GEORGIA SENATE BILL 167

Senator William Ligon*

TESTIFYING ON PREPARING TENNESSEE’S WORKFORCE

Mr. Pitt Hyde III, Autozone Founder

TESTIFYING ON ASSESMENTS

Ms. Peg Luksik*

TESTIFYING ON THE TEACHER’S PERSPECTIVE

Ms. Casie Jones

TESTIFYING ON STANDARDS

Ms. Audrey Buffington*

TESTIFYING ON THE MILITARY PERSPECTIVE

Lt. Colonel Eric Goslowski, Director of J-9

TESTIFYING ON THE INSIDER’S VIEW

Mr. Jerry Lowery, Assistant Principal at White County High School*

TESTIFYING ON THE DISTRICT LEADER’S PERSPECTIVE

Mr. Clint Satterfield, Director of Trousdale County Schools