“Barack Obama did not simply “embrace” a concept that others developed; instead, the very roots of Common Core are in the early ideas generated by him and his fellow radical community organizer, Bill Ayers.”
“Just prior to the presidential election of 2008, Dr. Stanley Kurtz, Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, wrote an op-ed published in the Wall Street Journal in which he observed that then-Democrat presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama’s “most important executive experience” was heading up the Chicago Annenberg Challenge (CAC), an education foundation that was the invention of Bill Ayers, founder of the Weather Underground in the 1960s.
Obama led the CAC from 1995 to 1999 and remained on the board until 2001. The foundation funneled more than $100 million into community organizations and radical education activists.
The CAC’s stated purpose was to improve Chicago’s public schools using funding from an education initiative by Walter Annenberg. As chairman, Obama handled fiscal matters while Ayers co-chaired the CAC’s other key entity, the “Collaborative,” which influenced education policy. Archives from the Richard J. Daley Library at the University of Illinois at Chicago showed that Obama and Ayers worked as a team to advance the CAC agenda.
In his op-ed, Kurtz explained that the Obama campaign at the time said that Ayers had nothing to do with Obama’s “recruitment” to CAC’s board. However, as Kurtz discovered, the Daley archives showed that:
…along with [Deborah] Leff and [Patricia Albjerg] Graham, Mr. Ayers was one of a working group of five who assembled the initial board in 1994. Mr. Ayers founded CAC and was its guiding spirit. No one would have been appointed the CAC chairman without his approval.
Kurtz continued that the CAC’s agenda channeled Ayers’ educational philosophy “which called for infusing students and their parents with a radical political commitment, and which downplayed achievement tests in favor of activism.” Ayers wrote that teachers should act as community organizers whose focus is provoking resistance to American racism and oppression.
“I’m a radical, Leftist, small ‘c’ communist,” Ayers said in an interview in Ron Chepesiuk’s Sixties Radicals.
Implementing Ayers’ radical philosophy in schools required them to associate with “external partners” that received the actual funding, such as ACORN, the South Shore African Village Collaborative, and the Dual Language Exchange. In addition, funding was extended to promote “leadership” among parents who would ultimately adopt Obama’s political agenda.
Clark wrote that as CAC was closing down, a pilot program called Grow Network was starting up in New York. Founded by David Coleman–known as the “Architect” of the Common Core standards – and Jason Zimba, the Grow Network negotiated a contract in 2001 with the Chicago Public Education Fund on behalf of Chicago Public Schools (CPS).”