“I try to instill values in my son,” lamented parent Brittney Badeaux. “My goal is for him to ultimately to become a great man, a family man, a well-rounded man. And now my son wants to know what a pimp is.”
Badeaux’s son, a fourth-grader at a school in Vermilion Parish, La., wasn’t asking out of idle curiosity. He needed the answer to complete his homework assignment, which also taught the “real-world” term mobsta (mobster to you).
Badeaux told Fox News she couldn’t believe it at first. “I looked at the paper and read the entire article,” she said. “It was filled with Ebonics.”
Welcome to the world of Common Core Standards — the initiative backed by the Obama administration that sets a uniform standard for grades K through 12. So far, 45 states have signed on. Louisiana is one of them.
Jerome Puyau, the superintendent of Vermilion Parish Schools, responded to criticism that the homework assignment is inappropriate, stating:
The Common Core curriculum, like it or not — we have to make our students successful. We know that in New York proficiency in state testing was very low. We foresee that our students will not be successful unless with align everything to the common core standards.
So learning about about “Twista” — a rapper who performs with the group Speedknot Mobstaz and performs a single titled, “Po-Pimp” — will ensure success and broaden students’ horizons? Live and learn.
But what about all the intentionally misspelled words on the worksheet? Brittney Badeaux wondered. She said she tries to teach her son to speak and spell correctly.
Apparently it depends on how you define correct.
Puyau said that the “po-pimp” assignment was aligned to a fourth grade English Language Arts standard for Common Core.
“Out of context, this word is inappropriate,” he explained. “However, within the Common Core standards,” the word is perfectly acceptable — which is all the more frightening.
“We want them to read real world texts,” he added. “We know they will go into a department store and see an album with that language on it. We know that will happen.”
Puyau conceded that the actual paragraph in the assignment might not be age-appropriate for 9-year-olds, even though the Common Core-affiliated site said it was.
We are going to edit and audit everything that comes through. In southwest Louisiana we do have high morals. We’re going to utilize everything that we have to ensure our parents that what they are reading is appropriate to grade level.
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