Archive for the ‘bill’ Tag
In an outrageous statement issued this week, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan threatened to withhold educational funding from Calfornia because of AB 484. The California bill, moving through California’s legislature, can exempt millions of students from Common Core tests, at least for a little while.
But Duncan won’t have it. He must have his student data without delay!
I will file this one under “We Are Not a Monarchy And Arne Duncan is Not a King.”
Duncan’s “off-with-their-heads” statement brandished the threat of no-funding over California’s head.
And he dropped another ridiculous bomb: He said that federal law demands that California give the tests. Should we laugh? Duncan picks and chooses which federal laws he feels like respecting.
Is there some law he’s referring to that trumps the General Educational Provisions Act (GEPA)which prohibits Duncan from supervising education and testing in any state? GEPA law states:
“No provision of any applicable program shall be construed to authorize any department, agency, officer, or employee of the United States to exercise any direction, supervision, or control over the curriculum, program of instruction, administration, or personnel of any educational institution, school, or school system…”
Or is Duncan referring to some kind of a federal law that suddently trumps the U.S. Constitution? The supreme law of our land demands the federal government say the heck out of the local business of educating and/or testing students.
“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” -10th Amendment, U.S. Constitution.
Running without authority, running just on audacity, Duncan said, “While standards and tests may not match up perfectly yet, backing away entirely from accountability and transparency is not good for students, parents, schools and districts.”
Accountability and transparency to whom?
States and localities are in no way to be “held accountable” to the federal government for local educational decisions. We have always been and still ought to be sovereign states; we are a Republic of Republics.
We are accountable only to our local governance structures, and primarily to the parents of the children. This is why parents are increasingly opting their children out of common core tests. And so should states.
Remember this: Duncan lacks the authority. He only has the audacity. And Congress is letting him run amok with our tax money. Congress needs to reel him in, as Paul Horton and Chuck Grassley and so many others have been declaring.
So, here’s Duncan’s statement:
“A request from California to not measure the achievement of millions of students this year is not something we could approve in good conscience. Raising standards to better prepare students for college and careers is absolutely the right thing to do, but letting an entire school year pass for millions of students without sharing information on their schools’ performance with them and their families is the wrong way to go about this transition. No one wants to over-test, but if you are going to support all students’ achievement, you need to know how all students are doing. If California moves forward with a plan that fails to assess all its students, as required by federal law, the Department will be forced to take action, which could include withholding funds from the state.
“In states like California that will be field-testing more sophisticated and useful assessments this school year, the Department has offered flexibility to allow each student to take their state’s current assessment in English language arts and math or the new field tests in those subjects. That’s a thoughtful approach as states are transitioning to new standards. While standards and tests may not match up perfectly yet, backing away entirely from accountability and transparency is not good for students, parents, schools and districts.</em
And here’s California Superintendent Torklason’s response:
“Our goals for 21st century learning, and the road ahead, are clear. We won’t reach them by continuing to look in the rear-view mirror with outdated tests, no matter how it sits with officials in Washington”
I wish Torklason would have fully condemned the Common Core tests and his state’s alignment to these experimental standards entirely. But at least he told Washington to go bark up someone else’s tree. Sort of.
It’s time to help Indiana. What happens in other states does affect us.
Here are two messages from Indiana moms who need your support. Indiana is ahead of 90% of the states in that the state has TWICE voted in favor of the “time out” bill for Common Core, which will mean that the standards, tests, and data collection vehicles will have to wait while the state thoroughly vets and reviews all the intended and unintended consequences of Common Core. This is wise and should be emulated nationwide, but there is a chance that the effort will be crushed by those who want the agenda’s wealth-making potential more than they want locally controlled, amendable, and legitimately high-quality standards. Please, even if you don’t live in Indiana, call.
From: HEATHER CROSSIN
Date: Tue, Apr 23, 2013 at 1:36 PM
This is it – the legislative session ends this Friday. If HB1427 isn’t given a vote in the House by the end of the day on Friday, the bill is dead. We can’t allow this to happen! The fact is our Senate has voted twice in favor of the Common Core “time-out” bill, Superintendent Ritz has indicated a review is in order, and we believe that a solid majority of our elected Representatives in the House support HB1427. What’s more, Governor Pence continues to make encouraging remarks in our favor. All that stands in the way of Indiana citizens getting a thorough review of Common Core, is Speaker Bosma and the paid lobbyists, most of whom have vested financial interests in making sure Common Core is not reviewed in the light of day.
As Representative Rhoads was recently quoted as saying, “If it’s so wonderful, what is wrong with allowing it to have a review?”
The Chamber of Commerce has taken out vicious radio adds to try and kill HB1427. This means we are winning, and should not retreat now.
Please contact your State Representative again and ask them for support and an update on HB1427. Politely, tell them how outrageous it will be if this bill is denied an up or down vote. Then please call and leave a message for Speaker Bosma letting him know that the citizens of Indiana deserve better than to have back-room deals made on such an important issue.
The Indiana House switchboard is (317)232-9600 . Finally, call the Governor again at (317)232-4567 . I am told that the final hours of the session is when many important decisions are made. Let’s make sure they remember – this is an important decision!
Lastly, please, please, please join us at the Statehouse this Thursday, at 1:00 PM. We will be rallying to make our voices heard. I am told that if enough people show up in person, we will not be ignored. Erin and I cannot impress upon you enough how urgent and crucial it is that we get as many there as possible, one last time. Many decisions are made in the final hours of the legislative session. We have come too far, against all odds, to stop now. Please make coming a priority! We need you! We are also scheduled to be on W.I.B.C.’s Greg Garrison show that morning from 10:30am-11:00am. (Derek Redleman of the Chamber will be on from 10:00a.m. – 10:30a.m.)
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By Monica Boyer
Alert: Just in from the Senate:
Representative Rhonda Rhoads has agreed to concur with HB1427, (this bill puts Indiana Common Core on a year time out.) Concurring means that she accepts the bill as written, and it will go to the full house for a final vote.
HOWEVER: We now have word that Speaker Brian Bosma said he will NOT call this bill down for a vote. So yes, let me translate. A bill can go through the entire process and ONE MAN has the power to kill a bill. (That is wrong.)
We need calls to go directly to your Representative. (Ask them to demand a vote on this bill) Then we need to melt down Speaker Brian Bosma’s phone and demand he hear the will of the people and call SB1427 down for a vote.
This is your children’s future. Now is not the time for silence or fear. As of Friday, this bill is DEAD.
Indiana House 317-232-9600 . (Ask to speak to your Representative [or any representative].)
Speaker Brian Bosma: 317-232-9677
(There will also be a rally at the Statehouse on Thursday at 1 pm. More details coming soon)
Indiana Senate Votes To Halt Common Core Standards
By Brandon Smith, IPBS
Indiana is a step closer to taking a momentary break from implementation of the Common Core educational standards. The state Senate Thursday passed legislation halting the nationally-developed set of academic standards adopted in 45 states.
The bill’s author, Indianapolis Republican Senator Scott Schneider, says he was initially approached by two parents concerned about the Common Core. His legislation originally eliminated the education standards; now, it halts implementation until the state Board of Education conducts public hearings in each of the state’s nine congressional districts.
Gary Democratic Senator Earline Rogers says not only has the state already spent money beginning to implement the standards*, but a wide variety of organizations, such as the Parent Teacher Association**, support Common Core.
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*THE STATE ALREADY SPENT MONEY. –SHOULD YOU CONTINUE TO TAKE EXPENSIVE MEDICINE AFTER IT IS KNOWN TO BE UNHEALTHY?
**THE NATIONAL PTA ACCEPTED MILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO PROMOTE COMMON CORE.
THIS IS ONE SMALL STEP FOR INDIANA; BUT ONE GIANT LEAP OF HOPE FOR AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL LIBERTY.
THANK YOU, SENATOR SCHNEIDER.
Great news for those who care about educational liberty in America: Georgia may break free of Common Core.
The article below is reposted from Heartland.org news. Joy Pullman reports:
A lawmaker has filed a bill that would withdraw Georgia from Common Core national education standards and prohibit personal information that tests collect from being shared outside the state.
This makes Georgia the eighth state to formally reconsider the Common Core, a list defining what K-12 tests and curriculum must cover in math and English. Forty-five states adopted the Core, nearly all within three months in 2010.
“What has really been surprising to me is how many of our legislators had no idea Georgia was doing this,” bill author and state Sen. William Ligon (R-Brunswick) told School Reform News. “Such a huge tremendous policy shift was not vetted by the legislature, not vetted by the people in the state.”
Common Core means changes in curriculum, testing, teacher preparation, and teacher evaluations. Ligon said his central concerns were higher expenses and a loss of local control. Just the new, computer-based Common Core tests cost $30 per student, or $37 for a paper version, while Georgia’s previous tests cost $5 per child, he said. That’s an extra $30 million per year.
Teachers ‘Overwhelmed’ This school year was the first most Georgia schools began implementing the Core within every grade in English and K-9 in math, according to the state department of education.
So, until a few months ago, most parents have had little contact with it, while teachers started training for it in January 2012. Some 80,000 Georgia teachers have received some form of Common Core training, according to the department.
“Teachers are truly overwhelmed with the Common Core,” said a Georgia educator who asked to remain anonymous to maintain good relations with local school officials. “It takes every breathing moment they have to figure it out.” She described the scene as “chaotic” because the standards are confusing. For example, English teachers in her district are incorporating social studies into their lessons because of the Core, and they’re not trained in the subject.
“Who knows what damage is going to be done with the kids not having quality math and quality language arts,” the teacher said.
Untested Program Ligon introduced Senate Bill 167 Thursday, but officials in Georgia’s department of education had not seen it so refrained from comment, said spokesman Matt Cardoza.
Several superintendents, school board members, and teachers have voiced concerns to Ligon and Jane Robbins, a Georgian and senior fellow for the American Principles Project, both said. Teachers and superintendents are afraid of speaking out publicly: it “would be a career-ending move,” Robbins said. “The education establishment is so invested with this.”
Especially rural districts will struggle with the technology requirements for Common Core tests because they are all online, Ligon said.
“This is a program that has never been policy tested, and it’s not wise to jump into this without that,” he said.
Local Control Concerns “People in Georgia are very concerned about local control in education,” Robbins said. “They don’t trust anything that comes out of Washington telling them ‘This is what you will do and you have no choice about it.’”
Just a few years ago in Georgia, she noted, parents widely disliked a shift in math instruction, so they raised a “hullabaloo” and changed the standards.
“This is the kind of thing we can’t do any more,” Robbins said. “When things were not working, we were able to fix it.”
On Feb. 6, Senate Education Committee Chairman Lindsey Tippins (R-Marietta) rearranged the schedule of a joint education committee meeting with the House so former Texas education Commissioner Robert Scott could speak about the Common Core. That meeting prompted Ligon’s bill.
“The majority of the parents we’re talking to and hearing from are telling us they don’t like this,” Ligon said. “They want Georgia to retain control of its curriculum and testing standards.”
A 2010 Thomas B. Fordham Institute study comparing all states’ standards to the Common Core rated Georgia’s standards equal in quality, but Ligon says he would like Georgia to simultaneously keep control over its standards and improve them through public meetings and input from teachers and Georgia colleges and universities. He plans to propose bill to that effect next week.
Learn more: Former Texas education Commissioner Robert Scott speaks to the Georgia House and Senate education committees, February 6, 2013: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WcpMIUWbgxY, part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5fHQlj9JQw.
February 5, 2013
February 13, 2013
December 7, 2012
January 16, 2013
Reposted from Heartlander http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2013/02/15/bill-would-withdraw-georgia-common-core
From Gretchen Logue, Missouri Education Watchdog:
“I would have thought astute business people would have realized a long time ago that you shouldn’t sign on to any public school plan that had no price tag, had no specifics and would be controlled by private corporations held unaccountable to the taxpayers whose money they were using.
Would the Chamber of Commerce endorse such a plan in private industry? Would they support a business plan that had no budget, no oversight? Would they endorse a construction project with no blueprint and only promises of grandeur?
Of course not. Then why is the Chamber endorsing CCSS? The processes used and the product promised by CCSS is what I described above. If the Chamber endorses such pie in the sky promises of CCSS that have no research to back them up, and the Chamber thinks THAT is common sense, Indiana is in deep trouble.” -Gretchen Logue, Missouri Education Watchdog, commenting on an Indiana Barrister editorial.
That ridiculous editorial is here: http://www.indianabarrister.com/archives/2013/01/indiana_chamber_show_common_sense_on_common_core.html,
Gretchen Logue also points out that the editorial insinuates taxpayers should like the fact that private corporations now have authority “to own the copyright to the standards and assessments used in teaching their children…and if a parent or a school district should find some of these items objectionable, they have no due process to stop using it in their schools.”
Full blog post here: http://www.missourieducationwatchdog.com/2013/01/common-core-wars-heating-up-in-indiana.html
Dear Francis Gibson,
Missouri, South Carolina and Indiana have written legislation that could withdraw their states from Common Core.
I am writing to ask you to help pass similar legislation for Utah.
I was able to give a speech on this subject at the Weber County Republican Women’s group meeting this month. http://whatiscommoncore.wordpress.com/2013/01/12/weber-county-republican-womens-meeting-speech-on-common-core/
I will attach the text of that speech here, so that if there is still any doubt in your mind that Common Core is a financial, academic, states’ rights and privacy-rights disaster, this will clarify the point.
I write to you because my own representative, Kraig Powell, has closed his mind on this subject.
Thank you for taking the time to read.
Please keep this in mind above all: the difference between what I am saying and what the proponents of Common Core are saying, is that my statements and claims are referenced and verifiable. The DOE’s and the NGA/CCSSO’s and the USOE’s all match, but all are empty claims with no provided references and no validation from empirical sources anywhere. Common Core is a massive, expensive academic experiment. An experiment! On our children.
We have been sold out, not by malice, but simply by the ignorance of our state school board and the former governor who signed us up.
My motive is pure, as a teacher and a mother who wants high quality education and actual freedom to change standards when we find some of them don’t match Utah’s needs and wants.
Jamie Gass, of the Boston-based thinktank Pioneer Institute, speaks at a news conference as Indiana Senator Scott Schneider and Hoover Institute Scholar Bill Evers observe.
Indystar article by Jill Disis explains what’s being debated in Indiana about Common Core: http://www.indystar.com/article/20130115/NEWS05/130115032/Sen-Scott-Schneider-reintroduces-bill-withdraw-state-from-Common-Core-standards
Here are highlights from the Indystar article–
Jamie Gass of Pioneer Institute spoke this week at a news conference in support of Indiana Senator Scott Schneider’s proposal to withdraw Indiana schools from the Common Core Initiative.
Senator Schneider has stated that “Common Core nationalizes education and dumbs down Indiana’s previous academic standards.” Common Core is a program “backed by President Barack Obama’s administration,” and “the administration offered states an incentive to participate by tying federal grant money to the program,” the Indystar reported.
Independent sources say the Common Core makes traditional methods of teaching and learning more challenging. For example, Bill Evers, a research fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution and former U.S. assistant secretary of education for policy, attended the news conference in support of Senator Schneider’s bill.
Evers explains that the Common Core method of adding two numbers together is less useful for learners: “Normally, you start from the ones (column) and you normally start by borrowing or what’s otherwise called regrouping… There are some other ways, some alternative, not-as-good ways.”
But in a Common Core Indiana math book, children are instructed to add from the 100s column and move left-to-right.
“You can do it that way, but it’s harder to teach.”
Proponent of Common Core Larry Grau, the Indiana State Director of Democrats for Education Reform, said “Common Core doesn’t change the way things are taught.”
Larry Grau, Director of Indiana Democrats for Education Reform
Full article: http://www.indystar.com/article/20130115/NEWS05/130115032/Sen-Scott-Schneider-reintroduces-bill-withdraw-state-from-Common-Core-standards
Right now, at this very moment, the Indiana General Assembly is listening to testimony from both proponents and critics of the Common Core national standards. You can watch here: http://www.in.gov/legislative/2441.htm
They are into double overtime.
Right now, I ‘m watching/listening to the testimonies of pro-common core teachers, and it’s painful. Why?
These teachers are obviously intelligent, caring, devoted people. They speak about the problems of remediation, the wonders of having students read challenging texts, and their opinion that the old Indiana State Standards were inferior to Common Core standards.
But what do none of them talk about?
The part they haven’t studied!
The robbery of their state’s right to set, and later to alter, education standards. This is a Constitutional right that they have given up. Do these teachers have any idea of that fact?
The robbery of their students’ privacy rights, via the SLDS database that the federal government paid Indiana (and all other states) to build, to track and to control citizens. Do these teachers know this?
The robbery of the taxpayers. I am sure these teachers have no idea that there is a greedy corporate train that cares nothing for students that is poised to make billions and billions of dollars by “implementing” the Common Core, and that almost all previous textbooks and technologies will be kicked to the curb. Most state legislatures have not done any sort of cost analysis. None! That’s nuts.
And the one teacher who I heard talk about classic literature seemed to think that because some classic literature is permitted, yes, even recommended by the Common Core, that would make the elimination of most classic literature somehow unimportant.
I hope and pray that the legislators see the truth: that these wonderful teachers and their testimonies reflect the beauty of caring teachers and their devotion to improving their students’ lives. But they do not reflect a viable assessment of the Common Core Initiative in all its invasive and micromanagerial aspects.
I hope and pray these Indiana Legislators pass this bill that will halt implementation of the Common Core in Indiana. Because the rest of the nation is watching.
And we want our educational freedom back.