Texas has been a vocal holdout on adopting Common Core State Standards (CCSS) since the beginning. Last week all 14 publishers who submitted high school biology textbooks for adoption in TX ignored the state’s demand to include creationism. I believe these two news items are directly related and reflect a huge shift in the market dynamics for instructional materials in the United States.
Partisans think the creationism kerfuffle is because the publishers are taking a principled stand for scientific accuracy or, conversely, because they are elitist liberals. In some cases these may have been factors in publishers’ decisions. That said, I think it is much simpler and can be explained by following the money. For the publishers this was a business decision, not a political stand.
This is the clearest example to date of how CCSS is going to reshape who gets to dictate the overall structure and content of instructional materials. The hypothesis I floated in 2010 – that the combined market power of smaller states could steal the march on the big 3 (TX, CA, FL) – appears to be happening.