September 2014 Government Relations Update

Capitol HillEducation and the Midterm Elections While many are focused on how control of the House and Senate could change during the upcoming midterm elections, from an education standpoint, governor’s races across the country are the ones to watch. The single greatest influence on education in a given state is the governor, so it is critical to understand proposed policies thoroughly. For the most part, it is a good strategy to hedge your bets, let things play out and then assess in November how the landscape could change – and whether there is an opportunity for you to have influence at the state and local levels. This Real Clear Politics map provides ratings of the 36 governor’s races in 2014. And if you are interested in getting more involved now or after the election, contact Arc’s Rita Ferrandino (rita @ for more information on Arc’s government relations offerings.

Common Core Implementation and Opposition As the Education Commission of the States releases a report  detailing where states stand in adopting the Common Core Standards,  the 46th annual PDK/Gallup poll found that 60 percent of respondents said they opposed using the standards to guide instruction in their community. The findings echo a recent poll from Education Next that found growing dislike of the standards. Overall, Gallup found that 80 percent of Americans have heard about the Common Core and at least half said they know “a fair amount” about the standards. As Politco reports, both polls make clear that the high-profile opposition to the Common Core is taking a toll.

Meanwhile, the Washington Post reports that 19 states have renamed their use of the Common Core Standards by calling them anything that does not use the words “common” or “core”, such as “Maine Learning Results” and “Ohio’s New Learning Standards.” And on a lighter note, this pro-Common Core social media campaign pokes fun at Common Core advocate Bill Gates.