The National Common Core Standards System
This heavily referenced, 48-page document is the result of three months of research effort on the part of members of Arizona’s Mommy Lobby, with the help of Emmett McGroarty of the American Principles Project. It has been distributed to Arizona’s House and Senate Education Committees, Governor Ducey’s office, most of Arizona’s leadership, as well as the Arizona State Board of Education. If you have questions about Common Core in Arizona (aka Arizona’s College and Career Ready Standards), most of the answers are contained in this document titled the National Common Core Standards System.
Chapter headings include: 1) History of Common Core: America and Arizona; 2) The Common Core are Inferior, Defective, and do Not Lead to Readiness for Authentic College Work; 3) High Stakes Testing; 4) Data Collection and Personally Identifiable Information; and 5) Teacher Accountability.
Please feel free to distribute this document, all or in part, as widely as possible. Click the title to open the National Common Core Standards System.
Editorial by Liberty Belle
Lately, “for the kids,” Port Angeles School Board administrators and Port Angles Citizens for Education representatives (Cheerleaders for Education) have been traveling the circuit to sell their $98 million bond with $83 million in interest. The total is a 55% increase is a $181 million, 25-year taxpayer debt for a new high school.
Promoting their bond, advocates have created numerous impressions. We’ve made numerous conclusions.
Most significantly, if readers don’t already know, in our current cultural state “old” has become undesirable and backwards; new is desirable and forward. For progressives et al. “old” is of little value, a pejorative to lefties and their collectives. Continue reading
Court-mandated basic education funding will occupy center stage when the 64th Legislature convenes at noon Monday for what many observers see as one of the most important sessions in memory.
Top priorities include a voter-approved class size reduction measure and a comprehensive transportation package. Above all, a new two-year budget will dominate the 105-day regular session, with possibly special sessions to follow. Continue reading
On the heels of Republican victories last week, attempts to replace Common Core with homegrown standards are resurfacing in states across the nation.
Most prominently, elected officials in Wisconsin and Ohio are spearheading efforts to reclaim more control of education.
On Nov. 5, the day after the midterm elections, an Ohio House committee passed a bill to repeal the Common Core standards.
Although officials on both sides doubt the bill will garner enough support to pass by the end of the year, they are hopeful the legislature will take up the issue in 2015. Continue reading
Prominent Historians Propose a New Constitution
“We need a new constitution.” That is the direct declaration made in a two-part essay written by imminent American historians Andrew Burstein and Nancy Isenberg.
Not only do the pair of professors pronounce the current Constitution dead, but they introduce us to its replacement before the body is even cold.
From the very title of the first installment, however, the saviors of our “democratic republic” start down a road that might lead to a new constitution, but get the very essence of our government wrong.
“Here’s how we save American democracy from charlatans, loudmouths and the 1 percent,” they announce before launching into a lengthy exposé of all that’s wrong with America, taking particular aim at the Constitution.
As anyone who has bothered to read the words of the men who wrote our Constitution knows, America is not a democracy and most of the men whose signatures appear at the bottom of that document would have left without endorsing it had they thought for a minute they were creating a democracy.
October 7, 2014 – 5:57 AM
Students at several Jefferson County, Colorado, high schools walked out to protest the school board’s recently proposed curriculum review committee that seeks to promote patriotism, respect for authority, free enterprise, plus the positive aspects of U.S. history.
The teachers union, whose members forced two high schools to close by calling in sick, is against the implementation of performance-based pay. The union has encouraged and applauded student protests against what it’s calling academic censorship.
The average parent and taxpayer has little idea of what is being taught to our youngsters. In February 2006, I wrote a column titled “Indoctrination of Our Youth,” followed in March with “Youth Indoctrination Update.” Both columns focused on rants that a student secretly had recorded of a geography teacher at another Colorado school Overland High School in Aurora. The teacher was Jay Bennish. He told his students that President George W. Bush’s State of the Union address sounded “a lot like the things that Adolf Hitler used to say.”
He continued, “Bush is threatening the whole planet.” He then asked his students, “Who is probably the single most violent nation on planet Earth?” He shouted the answer, “The United States!” During this class session, Bennish peppered his 10th-grade class with other ridiculous statements, saying the U.S. has engaged in “7,000 terrorist attacks against Cuba” and telling his students capitalism “is at odds with humanity, at odds with caring and compassion … (and) at odds with human rights.”
Bennish reasoned with his class, “If we have the right to fly to Bolivia or Peru and drop chemical weapons (pesticides) on top of farmers’ fields because we’re afraid they might be growing coca and that could be turned into cocaine and sold to us, well, then don’t the Peruvians and the Iranians and the Chinese have the right to invade America and drop chemical weapons over North Carolina to destroy the tobacco plants that are killing millions and millions of people in their countries every year and causing them billions of dollars in health care costs?” This kind of anti-American teaching might help explain why some Americans have joined the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.
Relevant to our struggle with ISIL is this observation by Bennish, reported by columnist Todd Manzi (http://tinyurl.com/nv2hedm): “You have to understand something. When al-Qaida attacked America on Sept. 11, in their view, they’re not attacking innocent people. OK? The CIA has an office in the World Trade Center. The Pentagon is a military target. The White House was a military target. Congress is a military target. … So in the minds of al-Qaida, they are not attacking innocent people; they are attacking legitimate targets.”
This kind of teacher indoctrination is by no means restricted to Colorado. Many teachers, at all grades, use their classroom for environmental, anti-war, anti-capitalist and anti-parent propaganda. Some require their students to write letters to political figures to condemn public policy the teachers don’t like. Dr. Thomas Sowell’s “Inside American Education” (2003) documents numerous ways teachers attack parental authority. Teachers have asked third-graders, “How many of you ever wanted to beat up your parents?” In a high-school health class, students were asked, “How many of you hate your parents?”
We can’t tell whether Jefferson County teachers are giving their students the same kind of anti-American indoctrination, because if there is not recorded evidence, they will deny brainwashing. If they are brainwashing students, then it’s understandable why they are against the school board’s curriculum review demanding that they promote patriotism, respect for authority, free enterprise and the positive aspects of U.S. history.
Parents should become more involved with their children’s education. They should look at the textbooks used and examine their children’s homework. Parents should show up en masse at PTA and board of education meetings to ensure that teachers confine their lessons to reading, writing and arithmetic and leave indoctrination to parents.
The most promising tool in the fight against teacher indoctrination and classroom misconduct is the microtechnology that enables students to secretly record and expose academic misconduct by teachers. Continue reading
Posted Oct. 6, 2014
Recent U.S. surveys show that the U.S. taxpayers’ money appropriated to “close the gap” between higher-achieving and lower-achieving students has failed to achieve this goal. Contrary to conventional wisdom, poverty is not the principal cause of the gap, but whether or not children grow up in a family with their own mom and pop compared to kids who lack that advantage. Continue reading
A mom in Seattle contacted me recently and asked how much money her children’s school, Blaine K-8, receives from the Seattle School District. I looked it up and we were both stunned to discover how little funding, barely half, reaches a typical neighborhood school out of the central budget.
Many people wonder how education budgets can keep rising while local schools remain chronically short of money, so thought I would share my findings with my readers.
Seattle Public Schools is receiving more than half-a-billion dollars ($689.4 million) in public money this year . The budget lists how much each school receives per student. Page 272 shows that Blaine K-8 is receiving only $5,882 per student. (To look up other Seattle schools go here.)
Yet Seattle District administrators, based on enrollment of 49,974 students, are receiving $13,795 per student in tax money. District administrators provide food services, bus transportation, cleaning and maintenance services to schools, as listed on pages 78, 79 and 80. Still, we were surprised to find that central administrators keep $306.8 million, or fully 45%, of the total education budget, leaving only $382.5 million (55%) to be divided among Seattle’s 97 community schools.
In the 1990s, Seattle Superintendent John Stanford sent 70% of education dollars to local schools.
For comparison across the state, in 2013-14, schools spent on average $10,832 per student. You can dig into this at this link maintained by the state government: http://fiscal.wa.gov/K12.aspx. If you put your cursor over Statewide Reports, a drop-down menu appears. Select Workload/Staffing/Finance, and you can see the $10,832 figure at the bottom right (FTE means Full Time Equivalent student).
If you put your cursor over School District Reports and select Workload/Staffing/Finance, you can select these reports for every district in the state. In the 2013-15 budget, lawmakers added $1.7 billion to K-12 schools, so the money sent to district administrators is rising by $500 per student, bringing the total average to about $11,300 per student in 2014-15.
Next time your local school has to hold a bake sale to keep the music teacher, or parents try to raise money for a math tutor, you might ask, “Why do central administrators keep so much education money? Why don’t they give more money to principals to fund teachers?”
As lawmakers debate the McCleary decision and education funding, a good first step would be for administrators to send more money to schools in the community, where it can be used directly to help children learn.
There were approximately 50 people present to listen to Home Rule Charter District 1 candidates introduce themselves, and hear Dr. Tom Greisamer and incumbent Steve Tharinger debate the issues.
In a nutshell, Tharinger favors more taxes to cover an ever-rising budget at the state level, while Greisamer believes there is enough money already, and commonsense adjustments need to be made, especially in the bureaucracies. Continue reading
More Americans are waking up to how bad Common Core really is for education, but its nightmare does not go away quickly. Liberal education bureaucrats (“educrats”) are now trying to enforce Common Core through the courts, with one lawsuit already filed in Oklahoma and another likely in Louisiana.
In both states the governors tried to get rid of Common Core, but parents are shocked that it may return by court order as unelected educrats claim they have more power than the state legislature and the governor combined. The Oklahoma legislature approved a law to repeal Common Core, and the governor signed it, but now its state board of education has filed a lawsuit to bring it back. Continue reading
As the grassroots uprising against the Obama administration-pushed nationalization of schools continues to grow, public sentiment is quickly turning against thewidely criticized Common Core standards — especially among parents with school-age children. Indeed, since just November of last year, the shallow “support” that did exist for the controversial education scheme has plunged dramatically, a new survey showed. Other polls found similar results. Continue reading
Even Bill Gates is starting to have second thoughts about the consequences associated with Common Core.
On Tuesday, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation— the second-largest financial backer of Common Core after the federal government— issued a letter calling for a two-year delay of the full implementation of Common Core, which is set to take effect this 2014-15 school year.
In the letter, Vicki Phillips, the director of education for the Gates Foundation, writes:
“[The] Gates Foundation agrees with those who’ve decided that assessment results should not be taken into account in high-stakes decisions on teacher evaluation or student promotion for the next two years, during this transition [into Common Core]…. It’s valuable for students to take the Common Core-aligned tests without consequences during this period, so that teachers can get familiar with the tests, have a chance to offer their feedback, and get a feel for the students’ successes and challenges.” Continue reading
Using a combination of taxpayer-funded bribes and soft coercion, the Obama administration is building massiveCommon Core-linked databases and quietly vacuuming up gargantuan amounts of private information on American schoolchildren, a new study by education experts revealed. Through a dizzying array of federal and federally funded state programs, the political class in Washington, D.C., is working to essentially eliminate any semblance of privacy — even to the point of targeting students’ values and beliefs. The plot appears to be unprecedented in scope, seeking to collect some 400 data points on each child. Continue reading
Posted By Lindsey Burke On March 1, 2014 @ 8:00 am In Education,Front Page
from Heritage Foundation Blog
What’s in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;
– Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet
As Juliet reminds us, changing the name of something doesn’t change its nature. Yet, in an apparent effort to placate parents, teachers, and taxpayers concerned by the effort to mandate national standards and tests for what every child will learn, several states are considering renaming the Common Core initiative. Continue reading
Since coming to office, the Obama Administration has been intent on standardizing what is taught at each grade level in all of the nation’s schools. It has used its flagship “Race to the Top” competitive grant program to entice states to adopt the K–12 standards developed by a joint project of the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). It has also suggested, in its 2009 Blueprint for Education Reform, that adoption of these common standards could one day be a qualification for states wanting future Title 1 dollars for low-income schools. Continue reading
A leading education reform scholar argues that Common Core national standards are leaving students unprepared for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
Sandra Stotsky, who served as a senior associate commissioner in the Massachusetts Department of Education and worked on the National Validation Committee for the Common Core State Systemic Initiative, writes in the Wall Street Journal  that the national standards won’t help students get in to selective colleges. Continue reading
Way back then, the Federal Government and the elected representative gave to and enabled American citizens, they made donations of public lands to such states.
Moving forward 125 years, “We the People” of Washington State, are in a battle with the Federal and state Governments and our elected representative struggling to preserve, protect, maintain the use of, intent and purpose of the public lands that were given to us in TRUST. Continue reading
Outraged parents. Fleeing teachers. Anxiety-ridden and medicated students. Fuzzy math. Crazy history assignments posted on Facebook. Longitudinal databases. Silenced community members at school board meetings in YouTube footage. Newfangled public school pathways of college and career readiness under the banner of “STEM” (science, technology, engineering and math) on a wild, 21st-century, technocentric highway that’s littered with stakeholders who are up in arms over federally mandated testing, national curricula alignment, data collection, and questionable content packaged into one-size-fits-all education.
There’s yelling and screaming from all sides of the political spectrum about the educational mandate known best as the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI). It raises a lot more than emotions; it’s a nationwide debate. Proponents tout CCSSI as the greatest achievement since the Enlightenment, while opponents compare it to the Dark Ages, a deliberate dumbing down of America, as Charlotte Iserbyt would say. Iserbyt was the Reagan admin whistleblower who struck a major blow to the technological forerunner to the tracking and data-mining age. Continue reading
Editor’s Note: Is your town or county experiencing a move toward “regional” rather than “local” government? The following is from the New Hampshire Tea Party, in an attempt to educate folks about the problems involved with regional government.
Help fight the coming “regional governance” in your NH town.
Powerful non-governmental influences such as the National Governor’s Association, are promoting Common Core Curriculum in our schools; and insidious programs such as the UN’s International Baccalaureate Programme have been instituted with help from agents of the World Bank.
It has become apparent that our local, state, and federal governments are being manipulated by a gaggle of NGOs and corporate foundations (such as the Carsey Institute) who are associated with public universities such as UNH. These groups, with their very special interests, are attempting to override the wishes of the local community.
WasteWatcher, September 2013
Starting in mid-August, children began returning to classrooms across the country. The individuals who work in school districts have the most personal (and visceral) contact of any level of government, especially since parents entrust them with their progeny. But this close relationship may be supplanted by mandates from on high (or wherever it is that education apparatchiks perch), where a handful of policy wonks (not Father) supposedly knows best. If they have their way, these D.C. do-gooders will dictate the curricula for elementary schools in Elmira, junior highs in Joplin, and high schools in High Point. Continue reading
Aug. 30, 2013 3:51pm Fred Lucas
Fourth-grade students in Illinois are learning that “government is like a nation’s family” because it sets rules and takes care of needs such as health care and education.
So says a worksheet for social studies homework that was distributed to students at East Prairie School in Skokie, Ill, complete with a drawing of Uncle Same cradling a baby that represents the citizens. Continue reading
for Citizen Review
What is the danger of a federally controlled education system that makes “state led” sound better? Those who oppose federal control typically oppose a concentration of power that would dictate one set of educational ideals (yes, even standards represent certain values) to the exclusion of others, establishing an intellectual tyranny of sorts.
Whether one sees Common Core as a federal program, or as the product of an extragovernmental cartel of state leaders (aka state-led) and special interests who had no constitutional commission to affect nationwide education policy in the way that they did, the outcome is the same:
Decisions were concentrated into the hands of a select few and the reforms of one ideology were championed (with the help of federal funds) while all other voices were shut out. Continue reading
The Bethel School District, in a rural part of Pierce County, Washington, is governed by five elected school board directors. The district educated about 18,000 students in 2012–2013, a number expected to rise. Five school board members are elected by local citizens. One important job for a school director is to make prudent decisions on how to manage growth. School directors, in cooperation with superintendents and coordination with other local governments, make planning decisions.
The growth projection for Bethel indicates they will need a new high school to accommodate their growing student population. Their school directors examined population trends, bus routes, and locations of other schools. They consulted with other local governments and county planning staff, finally selecting a site and purchasing the vacant land. Continue reading
The belief that high stakes testing will bring any improvement to our public schools is built on an ounce of wishful thinking, a pound of good intentions, and a ton of ignorance.
Consider the recent history of high stakes testing in the state of Washington. We spent more than a decade and a billion dollars on the Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) only to find that the test was deeply flawed. The WASL didn’t align with college or career readiness, and basically tried to measure student achievement of standards that were so poorly written they were impossible to measure by any kind of assessment. Continue reading
Rep. Mark Meadows has proposed amending the U.S. Constitution to guarantee parents have the supreme right of educating, caring for, and otherwise directing the upbringing of their children. House Joint Resolution 50, currently co-sponsored by 56 other members of Congress, secures parents the “fundamental right” to choose the form of education they wish for their children, including public, private, religious or home schools.
“This amendment to our Constitution would ensure that these decisions are made not by faceless bureaucrats but by parents who love their children and know them best,” said Meadows (R-North Carolina) in a statement. Similar bills in each of the past four congressional sessions have become known as “parental rights initiatives.” Last year’s version had 85 cosponsors. Continue reading
As opposition continues to mount against an Obama-backed scheme known as “Common Core” to standardize education across America, lawmakers and activists determined to stop the radical agenda are turning up the heat. In Congress, senators and representatives are taking action. State lawmakers are too. Among the grassroots, meanwhile, advocates for educational freedom are hosting gatherings in numerous states while planning another online “Twitter Rally” on May 2 to stop Common Core before it is rolled out nationwide.
Over 45 state governments have already agreed to adopt the extremely controversial program in exchange for taxpayer-funded “Race to the Top” bribes and “No Child Left Behind” waivers offered by the Obama administration. However, as awareness of the scheme grows, opposition is surging, too. Just last month the Republican National Committee (RNC) unanimously adopted a resolution slamming Common Core as “an inappropriate overreach to standardize and control the education of our children.” GOP lawmakers at the state and federal level took notice as public pressure to stop the agenda balloons. Continue reading
SILENCING OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS?
SINCE WHEN did American PUBLIC SCHOOLS become CENSORS of FREE SPEECH AND CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS?
SINCE A high school teacher in Illinois was DISCIPLINED for SPEAKING ABOUT CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS Continue reading
Two competing forces are pushing on America’s K–12 education system today.
One is an effort to infuse education choice into a long-stagnant system, empowering parents with the ability to send their child to a school that meets her unique learning needs.
The other is an effort to further centralize education through Common Core national standards and tests.
Across the country, education choice options have been proliferating rapidly, including vouchers, tuition tax credits, special needs scholarships, and education savings accounts. Educational choice is a revolution because it funds children instead of physical school buildings and allows dollars to follow children to any school—or education option—that meets their unique learning needs. Continue reading
Conservatives are in an uproar over Common Core, an educational curriculum being forced upon the states by the Obama administration, which is scheduled to be mostly implemented this year in the 46 states that have adopted it. Common Core eliminates local control over K-12 curriculum in math and English, instead imposing a one-size-fits-all, top-down curriculum that will also apply to private schools and homeschoolers.
Superficially, it sounds good. It creates universal standards that supposedly educate all children for college. But along with the universal standards come a myriad of problems, which the administrators of Common Core are disingenuously denying. The American Principles Project released an analysis last year of Common Core, exposing the duplicitous language. Common Core describes itself as “internationally benchmarked,” “robust,” “aligned with college and work expectations,” “rigorous,” and “evidence-based.” None of this is true.
Common Core proponents claim that it is not a federal mandate, instead using language like “state-led” and “voluntary.” The Common Core website asserts, “The federal government was NOT involved in the development of the standards.” It states that Common Core is not a national curriculum, but “a clear set of shared goals and expectations for what knowledge and skills will help our students succeed.” Continue reading
While many may not take the GED seriously, calling it the “Good Enough Diploma,” consider that quite a few homeschoolers take GED tests as a way to cancel out high school attendance requirements and lessen the record-keeping burden on home educators caused by compulsory attendance laws in every state. Continue reading
Wednesday marked another key legislative deadline in Olympia as lawmakers faced a 5 p.m. cut-off to move bills out of the opposite chamber. Here’s a roundup of key bills that made the cut and those that are likely dead this year.
Firearm offender registry: House Bill 1612 would require the Washington State Patrol to create the database of felony firearm offenders. Offenders would be required to register with the sheriff in their county of residence. The database would not be available to the public and the offender’s name would be removed after four years if no other firearm offenses are committed. It is one of the few bills dealing with gun control approved by both chambers during the 2013 legislative session. A number of proposals, including a bill that would require background checks for private gun sales, never made it to the floor for a vote. Continue reading
“Liberty just took a huge step forward,” declared Thomas E. Woods, Jr., in announcing the launch of the Ron Paul Curriculum. Having retired from Congress, the former Republican representative from Texas and three-time presidential candidate is setting his sights on creating future generations of liberty-minded activists and entrepreneurs through his new homeschooling program.
“I believe homeschooling is the wave of the future,” Paul wrote on April 6, the day the program’s website became active.
He clearly intends to ride that wave. The same day as his curriculum was announced, he spoke to the MidWest Homeschool Convention in Cincinnati, Ohio. He has a forthcoming book on the subject as well. Continue reading
In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work in this message is distributed under fair use without profit or payment for non-profit research and educational purposes only. [Ref. http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml]