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Gov. Scott: “Common Core Out in Florida”


Florida Governor Rick Scott

Florida Governor Rick Scott


By Bill Korach

Yesterday, in an exclusive interview at Jacksonville Airport, Governor Rick Scott told The Report Card’s Bill Korach that Common Core is no longer the educational standard in the State of Florida. Accompanied by his Educational Policy Director, Dr. Kim McDougal Gov. Scott stated: “The Florida State Standard is THE standard, not Common Core.”

I asked Gov. Scott what he would say to those who claim that The Florida State Standard is just Common Core rebranded.

“The Florida Standard is derived from the Next Generation Sunshine State Standard, which was derived from earlier versions of the Sunshine State Standards. These standards pre-dated Common Core and a truly Florida’s own standards.”

What about Florida’s obligation to the Federal Government from our acceptance of Race to the Top money? Gov. Scott said:

“Race to the Top was a four year grant. That grant has expired, it’s done. We are no longer under obligation to the Federal Government. So we are pushing back against any Federal intrusion into our public schools.

I signed three bills into law that underscore my commitment to local control of our classrooms, and my rejection of top-down, one-size-fits-all Washington, DC management of Florida Schools. CS/HB 864 says that the district school board has final responsibility for ALL instructional material in the classroom. The school board must allow parents to be heard. District school boards can no longer pass the buck to Tallahassee or DC.

CS/SB 188 eliminates the prospect of data mining or any other form of inappropriate data collection. And finally HB 7031 eliminates all references to Common Core national standards in Florida law (italics added by editor).

What about high stakes testing?

“I am committed to high standards, but not teaching to the test. PARCC has been eliminated. We are replacing FCAT with a test developed by American Institute for Research (AIR) that will be administered annually. I am committed to accountability, so I have eliminated tenure for K-12 teachers. I am currently planning implementation of merit pay. I want Florida to have the most rigorous standards in the country, and I think we have made great progress. Florida’s teachers won top score for U.S. teacher quality two years in a row. Our kids lead all other mega-states in achievement gains in 4th and 8th grade reading and math.”

Why the earlier reluctance to denounce Common Core? “I like to be positive and say what I am for, not what I am against. The Chamber of Commerce came out for Common Core, so rather than specifically renounce it, I preferred to say that The Florida State Standard is now 100% a Florida educational standard, but the fact is, Common Core is out.”


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21 Responses to “Gov. Scott: “Common Core Out in Florida””

  1. Lamarre Notargiacomo says:

    This is simply a smokescreen – more “lipstick on a pig.” Common Core is not dead in Florida as the governor claims. Here is the legislative wrap-up from Karen Effrem, Florida Stop Common Core Coalition. HB195/SB188, “by deferring to the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act, access is still allowed to individual student and teacher data without consent by the federal government and corporations (see lines 26 – 32 of the enrolled bill) and there is no protection from psychological profiling that will occur with the new $220 million AIR test.

    The CAIR/Pearson pseudo-“local control” bill – SB 864 – Although this bill would not have solved the Common Core local control issue, because it still required the curriculum to be aligned to the Common Core standards, it was made WORSE by publishing lobbyists and CAIR who wanted the state to still be in control. In the end, Senator Hayes’ good efforts were thwarted by the leadership and corporate interests. And there’s more “lipstick on a pig” for those with open minds who simply want the TRUTH. Here is the link: pursue this with vigor and share it widely. The propaganda machine is fully funded, fully operational and runs 24/7!

  2. Heide Janshon says:

    I guess Governor Scott is not familiar with his own Florida Department of Education website, which blatantly states the opposite to this interview. Gov. Scott, lying is unbecoming!

  3. Sylvia A Croft says:

    Check out This is the company Gov Scott mentions that is going to provide testing for the State of Florida public schools. Florida has also entered into an agreement with them to spend millions of dollars on curriculum they have developed (per Rep Charles Van Zant, Sr). They are a big pusher of the homosexual agenda across the country, especially when it comes to getting it into the public school system. There is a brochure on their site that you can download talking to teens about homosexuality that is quite revealing.

  4. The bills that Governor Scott signed have NOTHING to do with data protection or local control. Please see our legislative summary at

  5. Dave Sullivan says:

    Great interview, very interesting comments by Governor Scott.
    I personally feel the Governor has done all he could on limiting the effects
    of Common Core in Florida for this year.

    • Lamarre says:

      Stop perpetuating this lie. Rick Scott is planning to run with Jeb in 2016. No one is going to realize until AFTER the 2014 election, that they have been lied to and deceived and their kids indoctrinated. By then, we will be in so deep with financial outlays, it will be impossible to go back. Here is the reality of the bills that were passed: If you knew how bad Common Core is, you would not be enabling our governor to get away with this. As a lifelong Republican, I am deeply offended by the un-Republican policies being passed by our “Republican leaders.”

  6. Debbie Gunnoe says:

    So…..tell me please what is on my school districts website that are proposed standards to be implemented the 2014-2015 school year. At the bottom of each page is this statement: “The alphanumeric coding scheme has changed –
    Language Arts Common Core (LACC) is now Language Arts Florida Standards (LAFS)” and “Mathematics Common Core (MACC) is now Mathematics Florida Standards (MAFS)
    Next Generation Sunshine State Standards (NGSSS) for Mathematics (MA) is now Mathematics Florida Standards (MAFS).” Hmmmmm…looks like rebranding to me!

  7. Leanne King says:

    Bill, can we talked?
    I cannot believe what the Gov. said on most of these issues.
    Have you read about AIR? Do you know what their mission is? We paid millions to UTAH for this program? They data mine and yes they have a program for Sex education and LGBT instruction. I have a copy of the 400 CC data mining elements and am trying to get the data elements that the state has always used. Do you have them?
    They name changed the standards and added a couple things like cursive writing. Do you have the new standards? Can you compare?
    The only thing I can see that I know to be true is the 854 Bill.

    I have so many questions.
    I will call you next week.
    Leanne King

  8. Tracy says:

    yeah for no common core

    You’ll have to find another way to evaluate my kids’ teachers, because I am DONE with the state using them as pawns in a game that no teacher can win.

    I’m done with the anxiety of so many children over one test. I’m done listening to teachers tell kids that if they don’t pass the FCAT their going to fail 3rd grade. Way to make them succeed.

    Still looking for a candidate that goes back to allowing administration to evaluate teachers, and looking for a parental involvement component.

    I have no issues having my children evaluated, but they are more than 24 hours of standardized testing. They are more than that one score. My 3rd son has a Verbal IQ of 130. He scores just above average in Math and his reading fluctuates based on the year he’s had ….. BUT … he has 11th grade 4th month comprehension and 12th grade 5th month Vocabulary. Tell me how this ONE test evaluates his classroom instruction and his teachers’ competency.

    It doesn’t.

    OPT OUT SARASOTA on Facebook for support for our children and teachers.
    There’s also Opt Out Orlando.

  9. Rick Scott is lying. Common Core is the law of the land. They simply changed the name, and tried to hide it from you.

    Florida Senate Bill 1076, which defines “Sunshine State Standards” to include Common Core standards, was passed by the Florida Legislature and signed into law by Rick Scott in 2013. I was in Tallahassee, watching in disgust as Jeb Bush and the Republican legislature pushed it through nearly unanimously.

    Common Core was codified in Florida Statute 1000.21 paragraph 7, which reads:

    “‘Next Generation Sunshine State Standards’ means the state’s public K-12 curricular standards, including common core standards in English Language Arts and mathematics, adopted under s. 1003.41.”

  10. Dan says:

    1. Question… Has a letter been sent from the Governor and McDougle formally withdrawing the State of Florida from Common Core or will it be implemented without being clearly defined by Florida Statute.

  11. Vance Jochim says:

    What hogwash. All three of his bills were a smokescreen. At the North Lake Tea Party in Lake County, FL, we heard a conservative lobbyist from Liberty First Network, John Hallman, tell how Scott’s actions were whitewash. They still adopted 99% of the Common Core standards, changing only less than 1%. The data collection law barely changed the prior requirements. Just changing the name of the standards (and rebranding them) is not the same as actually dropping them. Another HUGE problem is that Scott and his Education Dept. head selected “AIR” to provide the online tests (assessments) for Florida schools to replace the PARCC consortium, and they are probably worse, and more socialistic than PARCC ever was. You can watch a video of Hallman’s talk at: MY forecast is that so many conservative people are fed up with Scott’s lack of action to dump the liberal Common Core program supported by Jeb Bush that they are willing to risk him losing the re-election for Governor. You can get background on the Common Core issues and links to other groups at my Factsheet at .

  12. What about all the money for the publishing companies that have changed
    the books to fit Common Core? Are they simply going to throw out their
    materials. I think not. I am very distrusting and skeptical of the governor’s statements. I have friends that have children in the public schools and they are now experiencing the horrors of Common Core and are very frustrated so this makes me wonder if the governor is just changing the name and pandering to BIG government as per usual.

  13. Cat says:

    And the percentage of Floridians homeschooling keeps growing. I wonder what percentage we are up to now. When we get to 10%, perhaps they will start taking us parents seriously.

  14. Stephen Wolfe says:

    Folks, if a candidate is 90% in agreement with Conservative values, can you not still get behind him and help him cross the finish line? If this single issue is enough to cause you to undermine the Scott campaign then you may indeed deliver the victory to his opponent, with whom you probably agree with 0%. Scott’s campaign has a platform, built on a record of success. To make significant changes at this point could open a new source of attacks from his opponent and the media. I believe that Scott sought to meet with Korach because he recognizes that Bill is the lead for Florida’s opposition to CC. Getting Bill to lower the flag may simply be a means to help the Governor get re-elected with a concession to Bill to pursue the issue more in depth after the campaign, when during Scott’s final term he is not faced with as much political fallout for deeper cuts into CC. Let’s not throw out the baby with the bath water. Bill is a man of integrity. Let’s count on his integrity to see this through.

    • Lamarre says:

      I do not want a democrat for governor, especially Charlie Crist, but our governor is selling out our children to corporate interests and that is NOT ok with me! If we don’t hold them accountable, who will? Unfortunately, the Republican party is becoming more and more like the democrat party. Obamacare is causing untold devastation and Common Core is even worse because of the indoctrination, overemphasis on testing and imposing of deviant lifestyles upon an entire generation of children. There are things to compromise on, but integrity and truth in education is not something we should EVER compromise on.

      • Stephen Wolfe says:

        I have never run a political campaign, but I think there isn’t time to right the wrongs of CC in this term, but there is time to win another term by avoiding the split in his own party caused by this issue which can be better dealt with in a second term. Scott also needs to keep the teacher’s union quiet, so it is expedient to rename rather than dump CC. Now the teachers are all gleeful thinking they are going to indoctrinate the kids, while Scott can come in without gloves in his second term and gut the beast. Then he looks better for a national run, whereas if he loses the election or fails to stop CC, he won’t appeal to anyone.

        Of course I could be all wet about that if he is positioning himself to appeal to Jeb by embracing CC.

  15. Kristy says:

    Sorry all you doubters and Crist supporters, I’m behind Rick Scott-he is not a liar!

  16. Carolyn says:

    This is Common Core rebranded under another name. Both of my daughters are primary and high school teachers in Florida and I can assure you they have done their homework on Common Core and AIR, they are one in the same with a few tweaks. So I would ask the author of this story to do his homework and then re-interview the Gov. By you not doing your research sir you are doing grave disservice by giving incorrect information. I am a conservative voter, I will support Gov. Scott in this election but I want honesty, it’s going to come out as the election gets closer so he should totally come clean now before it comes back to bite him at election time.

  17. Nancy Fogle says:

    I attended the Hillsborough County workshop for the school board members 2 weeks ago where the “Florida Standards” and Common Core were used interchangeably. The workshop was held to educate the school board members on Common Core– the workshop was all about Common Core. This certainly does conflict with Scott’s statements! The AIR test is just exchanging one testing consortium for the other(SBAC). This company has a lot of psychological and behavioral testing, too. Common Core is not gone– it is very much among us!

  18. Barb says:

    If Common Core is out, why did Florida pay 5 Million to Utah to “rent” their assessment?
    I wish we could all agree that ALL students deserve, and need, to be challenged no matter the political smoke and mirrors!



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