The Blast Radius of Proposed New “No Child Left Behind” Bill   36 comments

lamar

Senator “Let’s-Don’t-Talk-About-Common-Core” LaMar Alexander  has proposed a bill to amend  ESEA (No Child Left Behind Act) in order “to restore freedom”. The bill is called the “Every Child Ready for College or Career Act of 2015“.

I read the 387-pager after I learned that education experts, slated to testify against the bill, had abruptly been dismissed and were told that the bill had been “fast-tracked,” so there wouldn’t be time for them to speak.  —No time to hear testimony and debate about a historic, child-impacting bill?

I read this bill with these six facts and questions in mind:

Fact 1. There’s a  de facto federal database composed of fifty individual databases with interoperable State Longitudinal Database Systems.   These  feed on the federal school testing/data collecting system, and feed different federal databases and their powerful branches.  This clearly violates “consent of the governed” because nobody can opt out.

QUESTION 1:  Would LaMar’s bill restore “consent of the governed” to education and to student data mining?

Fact 2. There’s a federal testing system comprised of Common Core aligned, synchronized testing partnerships: PARCC, SBAC, and AIR.  This violates Constitutional separation of powers since the federal government has no business in state-directed educational affairs such as testing.

QUESTION 2: Would LaMar’s bill restore separation of powers and deny federal supervision of school tests?

Fact 3. There’s a corporate cartel of educational technology and text sellers  (Pearson Inc, partnered with Gates/Microsoft, etc) advising the federal testing system.  This violates the Constitutional principle of agency; individuals and states are coerced to use certain corporations’ products with federal approval.

QUESTION 3: Would LaMar’s bill restore a diverse exchange of academic ideas to the American textbook and technology market?

Fact 4.  The corporate cartel  finances the private groups that created and copyrighted the common education and the common data tags  programs.  Federal approval of such financing and implementation is clear by the official partnering of the U.S. Dept. of Education with the private creator-copyrighter groups.   That violates consent of the governed, too.

QUESTION 4: Would LaMar’s bill create fairness and freedom for non-Common Core aligned education providers? 

Fact 5.  Because Common Core standards are copyrighted, states (voters, teachers, you and I) don’t get to vote on them.  There’s no amendment process for any state to alter Common Core Standards nor the Common Education Data System (CEDS).  Federal promotion and partnershipping with those who copyrighted nonamendable standards, violates states’ rights and consent of the governed.

QUESTION 5: Would LaMar’s bill move us away from these chokehold national standards and restore individual agency?

Fact 6. Both Republican and Democratic politicians are hacking at the limbs of the Constitution openly, aiming to phase out the authority of the states  and of parents regarding educational authority, privacy and other issues.  Aiming to “phase out the authority of states” is blatantly unconstitutional.

QUESTION 6: Would LaMar’s bill stop the Department of Education’s agenda to “phase out state authority”?

Now, to the bill.

———–

I knew from page one that this was going to be a big, fat two-tongued document because the bill’s purpose statement:  “to restore freedom” conflicts with its own title: “The Every Child Ready for College or Career Act of 2015“.

This bill by its title and throughout its text cements the Common Core Initiative into federal law without once using the term “Common Core”. How?

Did you know that the phrase College and Career Ready has been repeatedly, federally and corporationally defined in multiple places as only Common Core. (See College and Career Ready definition: the Dept. of Education defines college and career ready standards as “standards common to a significant number of states.”  There is one thing that meets that definition.  Anytime you see “college and career ready,” run; it equals only the Common Core.

Can a bill claim to restore freedom while it promotes the exact, synonymous term that takes freedom in education away?

 

 

screen lamar two

On page three I found red flag #2:   “Close the achievement gap between high and low performing children“.  It’s another way of saying “everyone has to be the same at any cost– even at the price of slowing or dumbing down high achievers.”  Posing as fairness, it’s precisely the opposite, as nonsensical as the Handicapper General in Harrison Bergeron.  ( The funny, tragic short story of Harrison Bergeron is online if you haven’t read it.)

The bill explains how money must be allocated to ensure that the achievement gap-closing happens.  The Harrison Bergeron-ian “fairness” will be enforced with (our) tax dollars in federally set ways.

On page 8 we learn:  States will have to create a peer review board with the purpose of promoting “effective implementation of the challenging State academic standards“.  A mandated review board will promote implementation of Common Core, the very thing so many hope to eradicate.  Note the slickness:  later on the same page, it says:  “with the goal of supporting State- and local-led innovation”.  It’s pleasant sounding, but it’s a lie; one can’t support local innovation while implementing centrally controlled, Common Core standards on a federally mandated review board.

I already don’t want to read the rest of the 379 pages.  I’m only on page 8.

Next is a section called “State Plan Determination, Demonstration and Revision” which makes me wonder: why should states demonstrate to the federal government, when education is not in federal jurisdiction?  (Calling for “accountability” without authority to make that call should always raise eyebrows. I’m envisioning Emperor Arne being fed grapes while the Constitution is being used as bird cage liner.) This gets worse when the bill says that the Secretary of Education can decline to approve a State plan  (pages 8 and 9) and that the Secretary of Education would withhold funds from states who don’t comply. (page 12)   This is clearly out of harmony with the bill’s stated purpose “to restore freedom” as well as being out of harmony with the U.S. Constitution.

Page 13:  The same standards have to be used throughout the entire state.  They have to be aligned with state college standards.  (They can’t be lower, but they can’t be any higher, either, than the worst of any state college.  They can’t align with any unusually high private university standards.) This control freakishness –and this obvious dumbing down, may succeed in closing that achievement gap but only by harming high achievers, it seems to me.

Page 16:  In complete contradiction to pages 8 and 9, this section says that the Secretary has no authority to supervise or direct state standards.

Page 17:  Here we go with the assessments.  Every state must use standardized tests aligned to the college-and-career-ready standards (Common).

Page 20:  Here we go with the data collecting:  tests must “produce individual student interpretive, descriptive, and diagnostic reports… include information regarding achievement on assessments… provided…  in an understandable and uniform format” [meaning, I am sure: Common Educational Data Standards and SIF interoperability formats, which preclude strong privacy protection].

The data collected must be disaggregated, says the bill, by state and by school using these factors:  gender, economic status, race, ethnicity, English proficiency, disability, migratory status, etc., but will not be personally identifiable.  (Hmm.  On page 20 they just said tests must report on “individual interpretive, descriptive and diagnostic reports.” How is that not personally identifiable?)

On page 34 I’m troubled by this:  “achievement gaps between each category of students described“.  So they will divide and label student achievement groups by race, by gender, by ability, by economic status, etc. to further identify groups.

On page 35 the bill identifies schools that must be “turned around”.

On page 37 the state assures the federal government that it will participate in the NAEP test for 4th and 8th graders.

On page 39 the bill mandates uniform state report cards.

On page 54 the “Local Educational Agency Plan” mandates identifying students and identifying achievement gaps.  The plan also funds HeadStart or other government preschools.

Page 66 tells states how they have to spend any unused money.

Page 89 gives priority to low achievers.

Page 92-96 discusses private schools and how Title I funds will follow the low income child.  Where funding goes, strings are attached and mandates (i.e., data mining and government tests) follow.  Title I funds  look like the way Common Core aims to infiltrate charter schools and private schools.

Page 99:  Grants for Common Tests:  The Secretary of Education will give grants to pay for tests and standards, if the states are working in partnership with other states.

Page 101:  Summative, interim and formative tests will be developed or improved.  (More Common Core testing, more frequently, and more in disguise–as practice or as assignments, rather than traditional end of the year summative tests.)

Page 111:  “At risk” students will be indentified, intervened, and reported.

Page 117:  If there is failure to reach consensus, the Secretary of Education is empowered to act on his own with the “alternative process” that “if Secretary determines that a negotiated rulemaking process is unnecessary...” he simply tells Congress (not asks, tells) –and then he does his own thing, allowing for public comment afterward, and then, finally, makes it an official regulation.   I hope people are reading this.

Page 135:  Here the states are told the conditions by which they will make subgrants to schools and to teachers.

Page 145:  This fulfils Arne Duncan’s dream of replacing family with school as the centerpiece of life and community,  “providing programs that…extend the school day, school week, or school year calendar.”   Remember what the Secretary Duncan said in his Charlie Rose interview?  This is his one minute video:

Page 153:  “Secretary may waive” requirements.  So this may be a Congressionally vetted law, but it’s more of a suggestion than a hard and fast law, always subject to the whims of the Secretary.  This is repeated on page 224:  “The Secretary may waive any statutory or regulatory requirement… with respect to charter schools.. if.. Secretary determines that granting such a waiver will promote the purposes...”

Page 163:  Grant recipients must provide data to the federal Secretary of Education.

Page 226:  On Charter Schools:  “support the opening of… replication of… charter schools… expansion of high quality charter schools”.

Page 229:  “A description of how the State will actively monitor and hold authorized public chartering agencies accountable… including… revoking the authority of an authorized chartering agency based on the performance of the charter school… in areas of student achievement… and compliance”.

Page 249:  The Secretary of Education can take money out of the charter school’s reserve account if the grant wasn’t used in “carrying out the purposes” of the Secretary.

[On and on and on the bill rambles about charter school expansion and federal controls on the charter schools.  Endless pages are devoted to charter schools.  Why the increased interest of the federal government in supporting charter schools?  Because charter schools don’t have elected school boards.  The ruling bodies of charter schools are appointed, not elected.  In some places, philanthropists and huge corporations are administering charter schools –with zero accountability to any parent or any voter.  This is education without representation!  This is why the Obama Administration is pushing to identify and “turn around” “low performing” public schools and turn them into voter-untouchable institutions of the cartels and governments who benefit from that kind of power.]  I happen to have one child who attends a charter school and I know from personal experience that the board is under no obligation to listen to any parent, and no parent can vote a board member out.  You’re just lucky if the board happens to be made of people with whom you share values and goals for children.]

Page 268 talks about using magnet schools to desegregate “students of different racial backgrounds”.  I don’t agree with redistribution by government force of anything– not money, not teachers, not not principals, not standards, and not students of different races.   But the Department of education does.

Page 276 “State Innovation and Flexibility“: think about the way that title rations liberty.  What would the founding fathers say about the federal government creating a document with a section heading titled like that?  States are allowed to have some innovation?  Some flexibility?  Those are sub-particles of a rationed freedom, not freedom at all.

Page 297: “Indian, Native Hawaiian, Alaska Native Education” – This part has me confused.  Someone please comment below if you understand it.  Why would the federal government spend pages and pages and pages outlining different rules for these specific minority groups?  Not just a few— a LOT of pages.

Page 369:  “Participation by private school children and teachers” – By definition, private school children and their teachers are to be left completely alone by the government; that’s what private means.    Why is this federal law taking the effort and time to mention them?  If, according to page 92, the Title One funds follow the private school child to his/her school, then the government will be taking reports, data mining, and putting out mandates as well.

The answer to each of my six questions, from the top,  is “no”.

The stated purpose of the bill is “to restore freedom”.  Does this happen? No.

The bill –without even using the term “Common Core” a single time, works to cement Common Core.  It supports more common tests and emboldens the collectors of both academic and nonacademic personal student data (without parental consent), will intrude on private schools; and decreases representative school decision making by replacing a large number of public schools with no-elected-board, no-vote-allowed, charter schools; all under the banner of equitably meeting student needs and “closing an achievement gap.”

Please do something positive:  tell your senators and reps to help push an actual freedom-granting bill in education.

I learned with gratitude today from Utah’s Mia Love  that she is working with Rep. Joe Wilson on a bill “to allow states to opt out of Common Core without being penalized.”  Support Mia Love.  Write to her.  Rep. Wilson, too.  Please call other Congressmen and ask them to work with her and support her.

David Vitters’ bill, too,  sounds a thousand times more honest than Alexander’s ESEA “Every Child College and Career Ready Act of 2015”.

Vitters’ bill (S73) is “A bill to prohibit the Federal Government from mandating, incentivizing, or coercing States to adopt the Common Core State Standards or any other specific academic standards, instructional content, curricula, assessments, or programs of instruction.”  https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/s73 )

—But LaMar Alexander’s ESEA?  No.

36 responses to “The Blast Radius of Proposed New “No Child Left Behind” Bill

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  1. Another very trusted source. Thanks

  2. Why do both Obama’s NCLB Flexibility Waivers and the new ESEA Reauthorization mandate district public school closures and the expansion of for-profit Charter schools? This entire saga has already played out in urban cities like Chicago where Rahm Emanuel and Arne Duncan have welcomed charter school cronies with open arms. The result has devastated whole cities and communities. Families are left to struggle when their neighborhood school is shut down because of “low test scores” (which is manufactured crisis, by the way) and no plan is set forth for where children are to go instead. Sure, they can try and get into a charter across town. But, then one sibling gets in and their brothers and sisters don’t. This creates fractured families and fractured communities. Go read the news stories out of Chicago.

    SeattleEducation2010 said it best : “The phasing out of Dyett, one of 17 schools that the Board of Education voted to close or turn around last winter, highlights a process being played out across Chicago—the dismantling of neighborhood public schools, the ushering in of corporate-controlled charters and, in many cases, the gentrification of predominately African-American and Latino neighborhoods. Closing schools, like tearing down public housing, has proved an effective way for Chicago’s rich and powerful to push out and further segregate people of color.”

    Obama’s top advisor, Valerie Jarrett made (and makes) it rich off government housing projects that are perpetually shut down. She knows how to advise him to do it with education.

    Why are their so many minority subgroups mentioned in the new ESEA Reauthorization? It’s the same game that’s been played over and over by government cronies since the beginning of time…show a “fervent a false solicitude for the unfortunate” and then enslave them.

  3. Thank you so much Christel!

  4. Wow. Awesome work.

  5. Also, this article came out this week that shows how easy it now is to crack very select data and identify it to the people it belongs to. http://www..wsj.com/article_email/metadata-can-expose-persons-identity-even-when-name-isnt-1422558349-lMyQjAxMTE1NTIxOTUyODk5Wj

  6. Pingback: The Blast Radius of Proposed New “No Child Left Behind” Bill | Idahoans For Local Education

  7. THANK YOU Christel, for all of the time and effort you put into helping inform all of us of what’s going on behind the scenes. I’m absolutely sickened that our Constitution and the power of the States are being so disrespected, perverted, and decimated. We the People have tolerated it far too long.

  8. Thank you, for taking the time to inform us. Now, please educate on how I can help to stop this from happening.

  9. Christel I appreciate you precision in evaluating the content of this legislation. You are doing a great service!! Thanks

  10. We appreciate so much Christel’s getting out this post. Please go to abcsofdumbdown.blogspot.com for latest posts giving instructions on what steps to take TODAY! We researchers who had been advised hearings would take place in late March found out about this betrayal last Thursday – was a fluke! All info on that is in the above blog posts.

    Since we have only one day before last day of hearings please call and email your Senators and Congressmen to use audio of Rense/Hoge/Iserbyt interview (in which Anita explains/documents all the problems with the Reauthorization) in lieu of her making a presentation in person (impossible at this point). We are phoning them with that request, which also includes request the interview audio be included in the record of the hearing as well as being included in the Congressional Record.

    Anita and I will be doing a 2-hour interview with Rense next Wednesday, Feb. 4 from 11 p.m. est to 1 a.m. Interview link (for you to listed) will be posted at abcsofdumbdown.blogspot.com the next day.

    Here is link for last Thursday’s Rense/Hoge/Iserbyt interview:

    [audio src="http://rense.gsradio.net:8080/rense/special/rense_Iserbyt_Hoge_013015.mp3" /]

    God bless all of us and our nation.

    Charlotte

    • The shameful trickery used to take away the voice of the people, the parents, is numbing. This trick of changing dates is used in every facet of government today down to town councils. They also find ways to keep testimony out of records by calling meetings a ” workshop” or another name, tricking people by running it the same way but they do not know testinony not required to be in record. So beware.
      Lots of tools in the toolbox. My town is having a symposium on ” livable communities” with keynote speaker from HUD. Flowers and front yards in the graphics. Retread same scam to syphon tax $$ and hamsteing property rights by zoning. Closibg in from many flanks coming from same place as Lamar Alexander’s reauthorization of ESEA. anyway, it is hard to believe the dishonesty and betrayal by so many in leadership.
      BUT BELIEVE IT!
      Thanks Christel!

  11. As for the reauthorization of esea being fast tracked, you have to wonder where is the NEA? Aren’t teachers concerned. Sen. Alexander’s parents were in education, so it is hard to believe what we are reading about the plans.

  12. WHY was Jim McIntyre INVITED to testify on Tuesday but not education experts such as Anita Hoge and Peg Luksik? “Federal leaders looking to revamp No Child Left Behind invited Knox County Superintendent Jim McIntyre to testify before them on Tuesday. He is set to speak in front of the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.” http://www.wbir.com/story/news/politics/2015/01/30/mcintyre-to-testify-before-us-senate-on-education/22608619/

  13. An amendment that should be attached to this bill, so it would have to be voted on FIRST, is that : Any and/or all requirements of the current ESEA law, and/or any proposed changes in re-authorization, MUST BE PROVEN TO BE CONSTITUTIONAL before they could take effect (or continue) – whether or not the feds have a CONSTITUTIONAL right to do what they’re doing……….

  14. Pingback: Help stop the reauthorization of ESEA! Immediate action needed! | stopcommoncorenys

  15. PLEASE NOTE_: THIS IS MISLEADING!!!! There have been two very productive hearings, and a third is scheduled for Tuesday. Why ARE YOU SAYING THERE IS NO INPUT???

    All that has been released is a working draft. The Committee has asked for input on the DRAFT. It is true that both the house and senate are expected to have bills by the end of the month. The ONLY ask here is to END THE FEDERAL MANDATE FOR ANNUAL TESTING!!!!

    PLEASE ENSURE PROPER MESSAGE IS GOING OUT FOR YOU COULD VERY WELL HURT THE EFFORT EVERY ONE IS FIGHTING FOR!!!

    • Where are you getting your information. You say this but don’t back it up. Please give us websites to ensure you are right.

  16. Charis P.. not sure if you are referring to me or the article, but my information is coming from the NPE organization..

  17. I’ve included a URL that may help. It is specific to New Jersey organization “Save Our Schools NJ” so maybe this will help. A few of the organizers have direct access to Dr. Diane Ravitch https://www.facebook.com/SaveOurSchoolsNJ/posts/909662072400287

  18. Wow..lots to absorb. I did notice that the Native Alaskan section mentioned boarding schools…is that weird? Also that section talked about home education for preschool…which sounded like authorities would have the right to monitor what preschoolers are being taught at home.

  19. Christel,

    If only we the people would look at candidates based on the True Principles they stand for, there would be no concern for the issue because they would evaluate each issue based on the principles just as Christel has in her well researched principle based evaluation of this bill!

    “consent of the governed”

    “separation of powers”

    (Free) “Exchange”

    “Freedom”

    “Individual Agency”

    And the check on this violation
    “phase out state authority”

    WAY TO LEAD BY EXAMPLE CHRISTEL!!!

  20. Thanks Christel! Great job on research! I don’t know how you find the time.

  21. Thank you so much for the info. This has been forwarded. ESEA Authorization Committee Senators are getting calls for “No reauthorization” from Texas.

  22. Pingback: Support Mia Love’s H.R. 524 “Stop Common Core” Bill | COMMON CORE

  23. Reblogged this on Tillett For CT and commented:
    #StopCommonCore – Thankfully in CT there does seem to be more parents waking up to the ills of #CommonCore & the various ways that the names are being changed to hide the fact that the “new” is the same old crap with a new name to hide the fact that it’s common core.

    Be diligent in your research & do the FoIA Requests so that you can follow the money to expose the democrats that are forcing our innercity children into the school to prison pipeline with substandard educational experiments while increasing our taxes to waste on their shyster friends to “study” why there is an educational gap instead of spending the money on what our students need to learn skills to work at actual jobs with advancement opportunities or in any of the trade skilled job opportunities

    There is a #StopCommonCoreInCT facebook group which has plenty of information & working to get parents organized in all 169 cities & towns in CT. Join it & Stand Up for our Future Fight for our Children & Grandchildren.

    #ElectionsHaveConsequences

  24. Pingback: Come Downtown Friday Morning | COMMON CORE

  25. In the following:

    Fact 2. There’s a federal testing system comprised of Common Core aligned, synchronized testing partnerships: PARCC, SBAC, and AIR. This violates Constitutional separation of powers since the federal government has no business in state-directed educational affairs such as testing.

    Separation of powers refers to the separation between the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches of the federal government. The relationship between federal and state is called Federalism. I have a friend who focused on this misnomer, and used it find the entire article suspect.

  26. Pingback: The Blast Radius of Proposed New “No Child Left Behind” Bill | Stop Common Core Illinois

  27. Pingback: “Student Success Act” to Crush Religious Freedom, Private School Autonomy, Parental Rights: #NO on HR5 | COMMON CORE

  28. IF LEMAR IS INVOLVED IT IS TAINTED.

    JAMES ALLEN WYATT, JR.
  29. Pingback: SENATOR MIKE LEE’S: HOW SENATOR ALEXANDER’S ESEA/NCLB IS TO BE RAMMED DOWN CONGRESS’ THROAT | COMMON CORE

  30. Pingback: This Is The Moment, Congress: We Are Watching You Vote. (We Know What’s in This Bill.) | COMMON CORE

  31. Pingback: This Is The Moment, Congress: We Are Watching You Vote and We Know What’s in This Bill | COMMON CORE

  32. Pingback: ESSA 101: Or, Why Call the U.S. Senate and Scream? | COMMON CORE

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