Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is a man of two faces.
On one hand, he writes letters http://utahpubliceducation.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/Secretary-Arne-Duncan-March-7-2012-Letter_edited-1.jpg
assuring state leaders that they, not he, is in control of their state’s educational decisions. On the other hand, his written grants and cooperative agreements specifically contradict the messages of his public letters.
He tends to be angry when states don’t submit to the Common Core agenda. http://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/statement-us-secretary-education-arne-duncan-1
He said, on national television, that he felt very sorry for the poor children of Texas who weren’t being educated under Common Core. http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2011/08/arne-duncan-i-feel-very-very-badly-for-kids-in-rick-perrys-texas-schools/
His unfounded public insult of Texas education– http://nation.foxnews.com/arne-duncan/2011/08/21/dallas-morning-news-obama-education-secretary-flat-out-lied-about-texas-education — drew a wonderful letter from Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott, which you should read when you’ve finished reading about the Cooperative Agreement: http://www.texasgopvote.com/arne-duncan/texas-commissioner-education-robert-scott-calls-out-obamas-education-secretary-a-003216
The Cooperative Agreement (Between SBAC/FED ED)
One of the clearest violations of federal law broken by the Arne Duncan-led U.S. Department of Education in the wake of Common Core comes in the form of a “Cooperative Agreement Between the SBAC (Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium) and the U.S. Department of Education.” Here’s the link to the whole document:
“In accordance with 34 CFR 75.200(b)(4), this award is a cooperative agreement because the Secretary of Education (Secretary) has determined that substantial communication, coordination, and involvement between the U.S. Department of Education (Department or ED) and the recipient is necessary to carry out a successful project.”
In this, the first sentence of the Cooperative Agreement, one man (Arne Duncan) asserts authority that he does not have under federal or constitutional law, to that because he determined it, so shall it be. The rest of the document details ways in which this power grab is to take place, including:
“Actively participate in any meetings and telephone conferences with ED staff… Be responsive to requests from ED for information about the status of the project… including by providing such information in writing… Comply with, and where applicable coordinate with the ED staff … including, but not limited to working with the Department to … make student-level data that results from the assessment system available on an ongoing basis…
In other words, we will tell you what to do and you will tell us exactly what you have done, including giving us your academic and psychometric data collected on every student in the two consortia. (This nationalized, centralized data collection plan leaves alone only students in five of the United States because of the triangulation of data across testing consortia and with the Federal Department of Education.)
But wait, there’s more:
“…respective Project Directors [this means the WestEd/SBAC testing arm and the PARCC/Achieve, Inc. testing arm] will collaborate to coordinate appropriate tasks and timelines to foster synchronized development of assessment systems… The Program Officer for the RTTA grantees [this means the Feds] will work with the Project Directors for both RTTA grantees [this means the WestEd/SBAC testing arm and the PARCC/Achieve, Inc. testing arm] to coordinate and facilitate coordination across consortia.
We just proved that the Federal Government is in control of, and has access to, the test data gathered on our individual children via the Common Core Initiative.
If you look at the 9th and 10th Amendment and many other federal laws, you will learn that the federal government has zero authority over states’ education systems. This “Cooperative Agreement” clearly breaks the laws of the United States.
Why are we allowing this in Utah, or anywhere?
When I contacted the legal department of the Utah State Office of Education, the lawyer told me:
“I am not persuaded that the information you sent [the link to this Cooperative Agreement] are the agreements themselves or documentation.”
Yikes! The legal department of the USOE not only hadn’t analyzed it, they didn’t even know it existed, and accused me of making it up.
I doubt the U.S. Department of Education lost their copy of it.