For the first time, support for the Common Core educational standards no longer outdoes opposition.
According to the 2016 Education Next poll released Tuesday, among those who take a stand on the issue, 50 percent of the general public supports Common Core, with 50 percent opposed.
Interestingly, when the standards are described without using the term "Common Core," roughly two-thirds of the public support the standards. While support for "Common Core" dropped by almost 10 percentage points from 2015 to 2016, support for the standards actually rose slightly when it was described without "Common Core."
About 39 percent of Republicans support "Common Core," compared to 61 percent who support the standards as described without using the words "Common Core."
About 60 percent of Democrats support "Common Core," compared to 70 percent who support the standards as described without saying "Common Core."
Although fewer Republicans than Democrats support Common Core, Democratic support dropped by 10 percentage points in the past year, while Republican support dropped by 4 points.
For the group of people who were asked about Common Core, the exact question wording was, "As you may know, in the last few years states have been deciding whether or not to use the Common Core, which are standards for reading and math that are the same across the states. In the states that have these standards, they will be used to hold public schools accountable for their performance. Do you support or oppose the use of the Common Core standards in your state?" The second group of survey respondents was asked the same question without the words "Common Core" appearing in the question.
The poll was administered in May and June 2016, with more than 4,000 adults surveyed, including more than 600 teachers.
Jason Russell is a commentary writer for the Washington Examiner.