It may be summer, but we're not lazing away — CCI's Bob Gilligan tackles three big issues in today's show. First up, Mike Kagan, superintendent of schools for the Rockford diocese and chair of CCI's Education Department, explains that the Common Core State Standards are simply educational goals for students to attain — they are not a curriculum. The six superintendents of Catholic schools across the state last week issued a statement on the Common Core. Next up, Lewis University professor Christie Billups and Fr. Chris Reuter of the Belleville diocese talk about the new Prison Ministry Leadership course they are teaching as past of CCI's statewide prison ministry program. Finally, Steve Colecchi, director of the Office of International Justice and Peace at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, talks about the civil war in Syria and the recent uprisings in Egypt. On the Feast of the Assumption this month, Cardinal George issued a letter to parishioners asking them to pray for Syria, which has been torn by civil war for the past two years. The United Nations in late July reported the death toll had surpassed 100,000. An astounding 1.8 million Syrians have fled the country, at a rate of 6,000 per day since the beginning of this year. Another 6.8 million residents need urgent humanitarian aid.