“Parents Against Common Core Urge Donald Trump: Return ‘Control Over Education of Children’ to Us”

 

Dear Friends,

A very informative article written by Dr. Susan Berry.  She is a writer and contributor to Breitbart.com. Shared by Donna Garner, (Wgarner1@hot.rr.com)a retired teacher and an education activist.

“Parents Against Common Core Urge Donald Trump: Return ‘Control Over Education of Children’ to Us”

An organization of parent activists, retired teachers, and other professionals from around the nation has released an open letter to President-elect Donald Trump, urging him to do all within his power to return control of education to parents.

Parents Against Common Core, which consists mainly of the heads of state groups that have been fighting for repeal of the controversial standards, writes:

Though primarily parents and not policy experts ourselves, there is no escaping the fact that our individual and group research, writing and lobbying efforts have caused Common Core to be either repealed or modified via law and/or policy all across the nation. It is also an inescapable fact that the majority of our success in opposition grew spontaneously and fully from the interactions with our own children and schools and therefore hold specific and direct experience no mere “policy expert” could possess.

In the letter, which can be signed by others at its website, the parents ask Trump to consider them as the key “forgotten” group in education, and to do all within his power “to see that control over the education of our children is returned to us – PARENTS and GUARDIANS – those best suited to advocate in deference and defense of those being educated at the hands of the taxpayer.” 

With a goal of ultimately ending the U.S. Department of Education, the parents’ recommendations to Trump include:

  • Scale back and eventually cease the flow of education funding from the federal level to the states
  • Scale back and eventually cease the role of writing and dictating education policy from the federal level to the individual states in singularity or in toto
  • Scale back and eventually cease provision of grant opportunities from the federal level to the states for any reason, but specifically to cease and prevent support of any federal education policy, but especially related to invasive, ineffective social emotional learning, preschool, and home visiting programs
  • Revise and modernize the FERPA law for the specific purpose of protecting individual student privacy rights, including prevention of unauthorized and/or anonymous digital capture of granular data – specifically rescinding the changes to FERPA through the Office of the Federal Register undertaken in 2011, as well as maintaining the wise federal prohibition on a student “unit record” that would link college and workforce data for individuals.
  • Transfer funding for and oversight of The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to the states and remove the Common Core requirements for grade level instruction and testing for students receiving Special Education and related services.
  • Appointment of a Secretary of Education who is committed to reducing, if not eliminating, the federal footprint in education; who understands the Constitutional role of the federal DOE is non-existent; who will work to eliminate any incentives or requirements supporting Common Core; who understands that Title 1 portability will impose Common Core and other federal strings on private and home schools, completely undermining your key promise of local control; and who is a parents right advocate…

 The parents’ recommendations for the post of U.S. Secretary of Education include Dr. Williamson (Bill) Evers; Dr. Larry Arnn, president of Hillsdale College; Dr. Sandra Stotsky, standards writer and professor emerita, University of Arkansas;  Dr. Peg Luksik, Pennsylvania constitutionalist and co-founder of the Center for American Heritage; and Dr. William Jeynes, professor of education at California State University, Long Beach.

 As Breitbart News has reported – and the parents especially note – Evers was invited to be a member of Trump’s transition team. A vocal critic of Common Core, Evers is a fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution and served as both an advisor and assistant U.S. Secretary of Education under President George W. Bush. In addition, Evers was named by both former California governors Pete Wilson and Arnold Schwarzenegger to serve on commissions that evaluated and recommended academic standards. 

In January of 2015, Evers penned an op-ed for Education Week in which he denounced the Common Core State Standards:

[I]ncreasingly, parents and taxpayers view the public schools as an unresponsive bureaucracy carrying out edicts from distant capitals. Today, we are dealing with a deteriorating situation in a declining institution, namely widespread ineffective instruction in the public schools.

The common core’s designers have taken the existing bureaucracy and increased its centralization and uniformity. By creating the common-core content standards behind closed doors, the authors increased the alienation of the public from schools as institutions worthy of loyalty. The general public had no voice in creating or adopting the common core.

The common core’s promoters are endeavoring to suppress competitive federalism. The common core’s rules and its curriculum guidance are the governing rules of a cartel. The common core’s promoters and their federal facilitators wanted a cartel that would override competitive federalism and shut down the curriculum alternatives that federalism would allow.

The new common-core-aligned tests, whose development was supported with federal funds, function to police the cartel. All long-lasting cartels must have a mechanism for policing and punishing those seen as shirkers and chiselers, or, in other words, those who want to escape the cartel’s strictures or who want increased flexibility so they can succeed.

The new leadership of the College Board by David Coleman, one of the common core’s chief architects, is being used to corral Catholic schools, other private schools, and home-schooling parents into the cartel. The proponents of the common core have now established a clearinghouse for authorized teaching materials to try to close off any remaining possible avenue of escaping the cartel.

The parents note that in August of 2014, Evers testified to the Ohio House Education Committee: “Competitive federalism encourages innovation, allows movement between jurisdictions that enhances liberty, and permits a better match between policies and voter preferences. Common Core’s national uniformity runs counter to competitive federalism.”

In June, Evers sounded the alarm about California’s radical progressive K-12 curriculum. Writing at the Orange County Register, he observed the new framework “is filled with present-minded paraphrases of the uplifting rhetoric of the Progressives of early 20th-century America.” He noted as well, however, that missing in the curriculum are other facts about the Progressive movement, such as their “devotion to eugenics and their opposition to African Americans getting an academic education.”

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/11/17/parents-against-common-core-urge-donald-trump-return-control-over-education-of-children-to-us/

Respectfully,

Tincy Miller

SBOE, District 12

tincymiller35@gmail.com

www.tincymiller.com

“Trump’s Right…The System Is Rigged. Look at Common Core”

 

Dear Friends,

A very informative article written by Lance Izumi is Koret, senior fellow in education studies and senior director of the Center for Education at the Pacific Research Institute. Shared by Donna Garner, a retired teacher and education activist (Wgarner1@hot.rr.com)

 “Trump’s Right…The System Is Rigged. Look at Common Core”

Throughout his campaign, Donald Trump has argued that our political, policy and economic systems are rigged against ordinary Americans. The process that gave us Common Core is a perfect example of a rigged system in action.

Back in June 2009, two big Washington, D.C.-based organizations — the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers — announced their decision to develop national education standards which would lay out math and English knowledge requirements for students by grade level, and which would replace the standards created and adopted by individual states.

It wasn’t the politicians, however, who actually created the Common Core standards. The NGA and the CCSSO formed committees of education insiders and technocrats to do the work. While there were 60 members on these various committees, only a small handful actually created the standards.

Despite the fact that their work would affect every child in America, deliberations took place behind closed doors. In fact, all the discussions and standards writing were sealed by confidentiality agreements. Parents were barred from attending CCSSO meetings on Common Core.

The education publication School Reform News tried for ten weeks to get permission to attend a CCSSO meeting on Common Core — but was denied.

“The public has a right to know the laws that are going to affect them and their families,” observed Bill Allison of the Sunlight Foundation, a government transparency organization. But with Common Core, “it’s a black box.”

And when the Common Core standards were released, the Obama administration dangled $4 billion [Race to the Top] in front of state policymakers to push them to adopt the standards pronto.

States often signed onto Common Core without public input. Ze’ev Wurman, former senior education policy advisor in the George W. Bush administration, noted, “There was no discussion, no public debate.”

And who benefits from this secret transformation of American education?

Well, Bill Gates’ foundation bankrolled much of the development of Common Core. Is it any surprise that students are required to take Common Core tests on computers? On those computers, which schools must purchase, will be software, which they will also have to purchase.

The website of Gates’ Microsoft has urged schools to purchase new versions of its Windows software for the Common Core-aligned tests. The Washington Post reported, “Microsoft is hoping to make some money from the implementation of the Core in the classroom.”

Even more than Microsoft, the education mega-corporation Pearson is reaping massive gains from Common Core. Pearson’s own website has bragged about its “close association with key authors and architects of the Common Core.” And those associations have paid off.

Teacher and education researcher Mercedes Schneider, writing in her Columbia University-published book Common Core Dilemma, documents that Pearson, through its non-profit arm, gave early grants to the Council of Chief State School Officers, one of the Common Core sponsoring organizations. She noted that the head of the CCSSO joined the board of PARCC, one of the Common Core-aligned tests.

Pearson then received a contract worth $240 million per year to develop the PARCC test in a process that ensured that there would be no other bidders except for Pearson. And there’s more.

As Schneider said, the logical incentive is for school districts “to purchase Pearson curriculum to accompany Pearson-developed tests.” She said that Pearson’s Common Core strategy is to embed itself, “making its products and services indispensable,” thereby shutting down or subsuming competition.

Given this shocking trail, the Washington Post, which excerpted Schneider’s book, headlined that Common Core is “the gift that Pearson counts on to keep giving.”

Common Core was the brainchild of political, education and business elites — and continues to benefit them. In his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, Donald Trump said, “the system is rigged against our citizens.” Common Core shows how right he is.

To View the article online:

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/trumps-right-the-system-is-rigged.-look-at-common-core/article/2598460

Respectfully,

 

Tincy Miller

SBOE, District 12

tincymiller35@gmail.com

www.tincymiller.com