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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 - 11:03am

In The GOP Battle For State School Superintendent, The Dividing Line Comes Down To The Common Core

Candidates are still criss-crossing the state, campaigning ahead of the July 22 primary runoff. Two political hopefuls are battling for the Republican nomination for State School Superintendent, and the biggest dividing line between the two candidates is over educational standards.

Next week , GOP voters will have to decide a run-off between two longtime educators—Mike Buck and Richard Woods.

Buck is the Chief Academic Officer at the Georgia Department of Education under current Superintendent John Barge. Woods is a small business owner and former teacher and administrator.

Woods says his campaign is about moving Georgia in a new direction. He opposes the state’s implementation of the Common Core, a set of educational standards adopted by many states across the country.

“Looking at the standards themselves, they continue to be too broad,” said Woods. “ Some of the early testing that we see, especially in the third grade CRCT, we’re not seeing any growth.”

The state is currently replacing the CRCTs or criterion-referenced competency tests, with tests based on Common Core Standards.

Buck thinks the state should stick with Common Core. He says teachers support it too.

“They don’t want the fourth set of standards in roughly a decade. They don’t want to start over and it’s blatantly unfair to both our students and our teachers to keep changing. We need a little stability.”

Voters will decide which direction they want to go July 22.