Watch Colbert’s hilarious takedown of absurd Common Core math problems

Robby Soave Reporter
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Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert ripped into the Common Core standards on his Tuesday night show, ridiculing the absurd Core-aligned math problems that have baffled students, parents and teachers nationwide.

“Common Core testing prepares students for what they will face as adults: pointless stress and confusion,” he said with characteristic sarcasm.

The standards have been criticized for introducing federal control over local education matters. The Obama administration has encouraged states to adopt them by rewarding Core-aligned states with federal grants.

The standards require vigorous national standardized testing, which has provoked outcries among parents and teachers who consider the tests to be too difficult and a waste of time. (RELATED: Kids take Common Core tests with ‘inappropriate content, ambiguous questions’)

Colbert showed his audience two examples of math questions on Core-aligned tests. Characteristic of Common Core, the questions are poorly worded and ask students to use roundabout techniques to determine the answer. One question reads:

“Jack used the number line below to solve 427-316. Find his error. Then write a letter to Jack telling him what he did right, and what he should do to fix his mistake.”

Colbert made fun of the question. (RELATED: 13-year-old sent to principal’s office after informing students of Common Core opt-out rights)

“That’s a great question that teaches two important workplace skills: math, and passive-aggressive note-writing,” he said.

Watch the hilarious full clip below:

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