LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- The Michigan Senate has agreed to let the state continue implementing more rigorous and uniform education standards known as Common Core.
The Senate on Thursday approved a resolution authorizing state spending on the standards with a voice vote. That allowed hesitant majority Republicans to OK the standards without taking a recorded roll call vote.
The new national math and reading standards have become contentious since their adoption by the state education board three years ago. The measure now goes to back to the House, which approved an earlier version last month.
The standards demand critical thinking and problem solving that backers say will move Michigan away from giving kids a surface-level education. But critics question the benchmarks and associated tests, calling them an intrusion into local control of public schools.
Governor Snyder was quick to applaud the passage of the standards. "Michigan students will be better prepared to compete for jobs in our state and beyond as our partners in the Legislature took another key step to support the Common Core Standards," said Snyder in a written statement to the media.
The Michigan Department of Education issued a statement as well Thursday, saying State Superintendent Flanagan has directed his staff to resume all activities helping local school districts implement the Common Core State Standards and statewide assessments.