On August 9, 2012, two groups sent a mass mailer to all legislators in Utah.
The two groups are Prosperity 2020, a business group led by our Governor, and a politcal action group Education First, who say they are a business-led movement concered with accountability. They do explain that their vision is to “champion educational investment,” but they never explain who is accountable to whom, and under what law they assume authority for such accountability.
Since when do business leaders take such an interest in elementary schools and secondary schools? What are all the reasons for this going out of their way– just altruism? What do they hope to gain? Why are they promoting the awful, untested experiment of Common Core? What will be the intended or unintended consequences of having businesses influence what’s taught in our schools?
They use the claim of “consensus” rather than persuading others that their group and its goals are based on a legitimate constitutional or voter-based foundation.
Has anyone noticed the extreme similarities between Prosperity 2020’s goals and Obama’s 2020 vision? Has nobody noticed how many “2020” groups exist nationally and internationally? Why isn’t anyone questioning Prosperity 2020 in the local news?
Well, this is what last summer’s letter said.
IT STARTS WITH EDUCATION
August 9, 2012
RE: SUPPORT FOR COMMON CORE STATE STANDARDS
Utah business leaders have organized a movement– Prosperity 2020– to advance educational investment and innovation. We share a common vision with Education First, a citizens group dedicated to improved accountability, innovation and increased investment for education in Utah. Our vision is that Utah’s educated and trained workforce will propel Utah to enduring prosperity…
Prosperity and Education First comprise the largest business led education movement in state history.
During the 2012 legislative session, Prosperity 2020 championed Common Core implementation accompanied by robust student assessment…
Business leaders have found consensus support for Utah’s utilization of Common Core… We stand with… our state board of education in moving forward with Common Core….
Prosperity 2020 and Education First are prepared to again champion educational investment and innovation during the 2013 legislative session…
And on and on the letter goes.
I am concerned about the effect of public-private partnerships on true capitalism and individual representation. It appears that Prosperity 2020 and Education First are concerned primarily about the economy, not about the well being of children or teachers. Evidence for this lies in the fact that even the state school board admits there is no evidence to support the theories upon which the Common Core experiment is built– it’s based on unfounded “consensus” and money-hungry “trust.”
These groups represent businesses and a political action committee, linking arms with the governing powers of Utah’s education system– for financial gain.
Do you know about public-private-partnerships? Study it.
“What is a public-private partnership? What purposes were they supposedly created to serve? What, on the other hand, is free enterprise? Are the two compatible? In answering these questions we shall see that although advocates of public-private partnerships frequently speak of economic development, public-private partnerships really amount to economic control—they are just one of the key components of the collectivist edifice being built… -Dr. Steven Yates (Professor Yates’ white paper is available here. )
His main points are these:
- Public-private partnerships really amount to economic control—they are just one of the key components of the collectivist edifice
- The individual person does not own himself; he exists to serve the state or the collective
- Public-private partnerships bring about a form of “governance” alien to the founding principles of Constitutionally limited government, government by consent of the governed
- Vocationalism in education makes sense if one’s goals are social engineering, since it turns out worker bees who lack the tools to think about the policies shaping their lives
By not questioning the motivations and the possibly unintended consequences of these public-private partnerships, we set ourselves up to lose even more local control and voter representation.
Let’s analyze Prosperity 2020 a little bit more. Let’s not “consensus” our way to disaster.