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Video and Audio Menu: Interviews About Common Core, FERPA, Constitutional Education Issues   Leave a comment

(This one’s Jenni White, of Oklahoma’s Restore Oklahoma Public Education) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ByxgY3wxf0o (This one is today’s GooglePlus Hangout –about Sir Michael Barber, Pearson and Common Core– with Alisa Ellis, Renee Braddy, and me (Christel) (This one is the video Renee Braddy and Alisa Ellis made before I’d even met them; in fact, watching this video brought me […]

Can FERPA (parental consent and privacy law) and SLDS (student tracking) Coexist?   7 comments

I didn’t make up this question:  “Can FERPA and SLDS coexist?”. It’s in a white paper written by ESP solutions group, called “Could FERPA halt your SLDS:  A Mini-Guide That Explores Potential FERPA Roadblocks Disruptive to Your SLDS Project,”directed at state leaders who are attempting to data-mash their state agencies’ systems. http://www.espsolutionsgroup.com/espweb/assets/files/Could_FERPA_%20halt_your_LDS.pdf (I’m guessing readers of […]

BYU Professor David Wiley Defends USOE’s Common Core/FERPA Statement   14 comments

  Rod Arquette hosts national education experts: James Gass of Pioneer Institute, Emmett McGroarty of American Principals Project, Bill Evers of Hoover Institute at Stanford, and Kent Talbert, D.C. lawyer and former counsel to Department of Education. Photo taken the day before the public forum in Salt Lake City. On July 10th, 2012, a public forum was […]

Drumroll, please… Thursday night the Wasatch School Board will unveil yet another FERPA policy   Leave a comment

Dear Wasatch School Board, I may pull out my hair and run screaming from the room if it is apparent in this Thursday’s school board meeting –as it was at the last meeting– that the board has not done any meaningful research on the facts concerning federal FERPA, and that the board remains Constitutionally ignorant, […]

On FERPA and Common Core in Utah: How to Protect Our State’s Freedoms?   1 comment

State Power over Citizen Privacy   I’ve asked my local, state, and Congressional representatives to fortify and strengthen consent requirements over personally identifiable student data being shared beyond the school district.  It’s important for Utah to identify what Utah will officially recognize –and will not recognize– as being binding on Utah, coming from D.C. The Dept. of Education’s recent […]

How would a stronger school district FERPA policy keep my children safer?   Leave a comment

The 2012 Wasatch School Board, Wasatch County, Utah http://www.wasatch.edu//site/Default.aspx?PageID=5282 The Wasatch School Board seem well intentioned, but they also seem to lack an understanding of the importance of having a strong local FERPA policy.  They dismissed the many parental comments they received last month;  Ms. Gappmayer wrote a new policy that deleted all mention of parental […]

Wasatch School Board’s Meaningless New FERPA Policy Out for 30-Day Review   Leave a comment

Dear Citizens of Heber Valley,  Please direct comments about FERPA and the importance of family privacy protection to the Wasatch School Board and District Officials at: “JAMES JUDD” <james.judd@wasatch.edu>, “VICCI GAPPMAYER” <vicci.gappmayer@wasatch.edu>, “TERRY SHOEMAKER” <terry.shoemaker@wasatch.edu>, “ANN HORNER” <ann.horner@wasatch.edu>, “DEBBIE JONES” <debbie.jones@wasatch.edu>, “WILMA COWLEY” <wilma.cowley@wasatch.edu>, “BLAIK BAIRD” <blaik.baird@wasatch.edu>, keith.johansen@wasatch.edu. Here’s the public comment I submitted today: […]

Wasatch School Board Further Slashes Parental Involvement and Consent over Student Data – New FERPA Policy Up For 30-Day Review AGAIN   Leave a comment

Wasatch School Board Further Slashes Parental Involvement and Consent over Student Data – New FERPA Policy Up For 30-Day Review AGAIN.

Wasatch County School Board on KTMP Radio speaking about FERPA revisions   Leave a comment

https://sites.google.com/site/wasatchlive2/  You can listen to archives from the Impact Show with Bob Wren and Paul Royall on KTMP 1340 AM by clicking and making an account (free) and downloading (free). I’ve been listening to Thursday’s show, where half of the Wasatch School Board made a guest appearance with Bob and Paul.  I’ve also been listening to Monday and […]

Letter to Corbin White and Jordan School District: On FERPA revisions   Leave a comment

Dear Corbin White and Jordan School District,   It was good to meet you at the U.S.O.E. forum on Common Core yesterday. Although we testified on opposite sides of this issue, I think there is nothing to contend about.  We all want great school standards.  We all want political and parental freedom.   I’m writing […]

So Who Cares If The Feds Have My Kids’ Data? FERPA – Part II   Leave a comment

For those who are still asking, “Who cares if the federal government has access to my kids’ data without my parental consent?” –please view the National Data Collection Model database attributes (data categories) at http://nces.sifinfo.org/datamodel/eiebrowser/techview.aspx?instance=studentPostsecondary  to see what kinds of data they will be collecting– it is unbelievable. See the rules of the game:  read the “assurances” […]

Posted April 26, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Understanding FERPA and Parental Consent Authority   Leave a comment

April 24, 2014 Dear Heber Parents, Some of you have asked for this FERPA revision attachment that our school board passed on Thursday in Heber City and that school districts all over Utah will be passing unless parents stop them. I will give some context. FERPA laws are very important.  They protect families and students […]

Posted April 25, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Go to your school board meetings and get the FERPA documents they are trying to alter.   Leave a comment

Attend your local school board meetings and DO NOT let your board pass any amendment to FERPA laws. Just say no. It’s your parental authority versus the federal authority over your child’s data that is at stake. If they tell you the feds are forcing them to change FERPA, you tell them to get a […]

Posted April 24, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Wasatch School Board Overturns FERPA Parental Consent Law for Common Core Agenda   Leave a comment

Dear Editor: Does the Wasatch School Board take into account the wishes of parents, teachers and taxpayers?  Few of us would have chosen what they chose for us Thursday night.  As a taxpayer, mother and teacher, I motion that the local school board re-open the question of FERPA law revision –and leave it similarly open […]

Posted April 20, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

What Does the Passage of HR5, the New No Child Left Behind, Mean For American Children?   3 comments

What does it mean that HR5, the reauthorization of No Child Left Behind, passed?  What does it mean for children, teachers, parents?  Who benefits?  Why was it so strongly promoted? Attorney and author Emmett McGroarty reported this week at The Pulse 2016 how “House Republicans Betray Common Core Moms” with the passage of HR5. He explained that […]

A Titanic NO on Twin Ed Bills – Children Deserve Better Than HR5 and S1177   9 comments

    You can’t stick corks into the side of the Titanic to save the people on the ship, and you can’t stick amendments into evil bills and then in good conscience vote yes on them. We are building and voting for our own children’s cages in the belly of a sinking ship. Read the current ed […]

Protecting Kids: Pioneer Institute’s Call to Action for Parents, Schools, Congress   Leave a comment

I’m posting today to draw attention to Cogs in the Machine, an important white paper published last year by Pioneer Institute, written by Jane Robbins, Joy Pullman and Emmett McGroarty.   It’s about public-system-assisted big data collection –and how Americans can protect their kids.  The paper includes specific, effective action points for parents, schools, state- and nationally-elected […]

U.S. Senator David Vitters’ Privacy Bill in Congress Can Protect Student Data   1 comment

Ever since that dark day three years ago when I received a written response from the State Office of Education saying that the answer to my question was “No,” –NO to the question of whether a student could attend school to simply learn (as opposed to being tracked at school, as “human capital” by the state and […]

Stealth Testing: An Unacceptable Alternative to High Stakes Tests   6 comments

  Senator Howard Stephenson was right when he said on the Rod Arquette Show  that SAGE tests turn our children into guinea pigs and that SAGE should be abandoned immediately, this very minute. He was right when he said that it’s educational malpractice to use a beta-test to judge students and teachers and schools. He was […]

Source-Focused Analysis of Common Core Starts Here: An Updated Syllabus   7 comments

Original source documents arm honest people who want to know the truth about Common Core to take back the reins of control. This is important because proponents are increasing false advertisements about Common Core.  They’re also hiding the Common Core Inititative under different names, such as “Utah Core” or  “Indiana Core“.  Unfortunately, well intentioned people whom […]

Federal HR5 Down: Ten Things to Watch for in New ESEA Reauthorization Bill and SETRA   1 comment

  Last week bipartisan grassroots Americans saw a miracle. That wolf in sheep’s clothing, the (supposed) shoo-in bill called federal HR5 or The Student Success Act, which was to reauthorize No Child Left Behind/ESEA, was thrown aside  by Congress instead of becoming law.  Thanks to a bipartisan effort by grassroots citizens and vigilant Congressmen who studied the language inside […]

Federal Control of Technology and Data: On “Internet Neutrality,”the ConnectEd Initiative, and SETRA   7 comments

How will President Obama’s multiple initiatives increase federal control over American technology and data mining –and how will these initiatives affect children? There are several new initiatives to consider. I.  NET NEUTRALITY Yesterday the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) passed the Obama-approved definition of “Internet Neutrality.”  Proponents made it sound as if “neutrality” meant openness and freedom for […]

Hearingless Congressional Vote Scheduled for S227 – Children Losing Privacy – SETRA Bill   8 comments

The press release below came out today, February 23, 2015, from Kate Bryan at American Principles in Action. I have not read this bill.  When I do, I will write about it.   The vote is scheduled for two days from now… so read, please, and comment here and to your reps and senators.   […]

“Student Success Act” to Crush Religious Freedom, Private School Autonomy, Parental Rights: #NO on HR5   107 comments

      This one is such a betrayal. I’ve never been so shocked and angry over a proposed Congressional bill that I burst into tears.  Not until tonight. I’d been quietly reading and taking notes on H.R. 5, “Student Success Act” (SSA) when my husband simply, offhandedly asked me how I was doing.   […]

The Governor’s Charade   5 comments

Last Friday, my children and I were on an educational field trip to see Governor Herbert address the state school board in Salt Lake City.  We were learning how to use civic rights to free speech and expression.  I had hoped to influence the establishment to not renew the federal waiver (NCLB/ESEA) and hoped to […]

Misleading Polls: One Reason Utahns Don’t Know About the Common Core and Common Data Standards   2 comments

I was invited to speak on the Rod Arquette show today about the results of a poll published  by Utah Policy.  I’ve decided to write here what I won’t have time to fully say there. The poll’s questions narrowed the larger Common Core Agenda to a tiny fraction (just the academic standards, string free) so […]

Utah’s Fight for Student Data Privacy is On   4 comments

  Sharing my letter, send out today. ——————————– Dear [State School] Board, I am gravely concerned about the “emergency vote” that was taken by the board last month, which decreased the amount of student data privacy protections that were previously in place, in order to cater to corporate education vendors, and in order to align […]

What Data is Collected From Kindergarteners Without Parental Consent?   21 comments

If a parent wants psychologists, researchers, doctors or businessmen studying his/her child, and the parents gives written consent, I have no problem with that. I do have a very big problem with researchers, businessmen, politicians and others studying children without parental consent or knowledge.  That’s 1984-style creepy.  That’s government believing it’s bigger and more valid […]

Why U.S. Education Needs the U.S. Constitution Now   4 comments

Phillip Hamburger, law professor at Columbia Law School, gave a moving speech at Hillsdale College about the Constitution, also published in Imprimis this year.  It laid out more clearly than I’d seen it before, exactly how the U.S. has strayed from our Constitution, and how it’s endangering us.  His speech was titled, “The History and Danger of Administrative […]

White House ConnectED: Phase Out Printed Textbooks   7 comments

I already had a sense of growing nausea attached to my observations of locals’ infatuation with technology-centric schooling. It got worse when I read the latest White House fact sheet on Obama’s ConnectEd plan.  Utah’s perfectly in line with  D.C. –the cool people are dumping the old fashioned notion of using books in schools to spend gobs and gobs […]

Has Your School Adopted All-Year-Round Common Core Testing?   10 comments

  One of the reasons that our family moved from Wasatch County to Utah County last month was to be closer to the school in Alpine (Utah County) that my son is attending this year. The 50-mile (times two) daily commute was worth it. Filled with uniformed students and happy-looking staff, Mountainville Academy’s a cheerful, […]

Alpine School Board Members Speak Out For Student Privacy   5 comments

  Three remarkable Alpine School Board Members: Wendy Hart (front left) Brian Halladay (standing, middle)  and Paula Hill (front, right) have written an open letter on student privacy, citing documented realities (contracts, documents and laws) that boldly stand for student privacy and parental rights, against Common Core SAGE/AIR testing.  The letter stands tall against statements […]

If Student Data Privacy Isn’t Protected, It Isn’t Protected   1 comment

  California just passed a bill to protect student privacy.  I want to know why Utah hasn’t done the same thing.  Those few Utah legislators who tried to pass privacy-protecting bills (Jake Anderegg, Brian Greene) were not supported by the majority of Utah politicans. Why?! Do we not care about student privacy? Is privacy not a […]

Outsmarting the Language of the Common Core Cuttlefish   4 comments

A smiling school board member, tired of me and unwilling to fight the Common Core monster, advised me to do what she does: focus on the positive parts of Common Core.  Be an optimist, she said. “The positive parts?  –You mean the lies?” I thought, because I’ve not seen positive parts unless you count the positive–sounding parts. There are lots […]

For Utah School Districts: A Common Core Fact-Checking Adventure   2 comments

Let’s not call this research!   This is a fact-checking adventure. This adventure begins because of the FAQ statements about Common Core posted at the Provo  School District website.  (See it on their  website or just scroll to the bottom of the page where I’ve pasted it.) This post is not meant to be accusatory or mean.  Provo District and […]

UT Associate Superintendent Park Responds to Open Letter on Student Data Privacy   4 comments

Yesterday, UT Associate Superintendent Judy Park responded to an open letter  (posted below) that I sent a week ago.  I had sent the letter to support St. George parents who want to opt children out of the standardized testing. Ms. Park’s response was a one-sentence email message that included a link to a graphic, also posted […]

Fact-Checking Associate UT Superintendent Judy Park on Nonacademic Data Collection   10 comments

Once again it seems necessary, unfortunately, to provide a fact-checking rebuttal to statements made by Utah’s Associate Superintendent Judy Park about student data privacy. In a letter given out to parents of children attending a St. George charter school recently, Judy Park was quoted at length.  Park, the Associate Superintendent of Utah, made the following statements that will be scrutinized […]

What Is Common Core: 101   55 comments

What Is Common Core?  This post aims to be as unmistakably direct and documented as possible.    Feel free to use it without asking permission. DOES  COMMON CORE PREPARE STUDENTS FOR COLLEGE? Not for a 4-year university.  It minimally prepares students for the non-collegiate workforce or for non-selective community colleges. A key Common Core creator, Jason Zimba, said […]

Not with my child you won’t: Psychological Damages of Common Core Analyzed by Joan Landes   46 comments

NOT WITH MY CHILD YOU WON’T Guest Post by Joan Landes Joan Landes, a Utah mental health therapist, has spoken out in opposition to Common Core.  The speech posted below comes from a recent conference where she spoke.  She has given permission to post her findings here, and they are also posted on her blog here:  Not with my […]

Weighing Data-Driven Decision Making Against Privacy Under Common Core   5 comments

Should parents have the right to opt out of having children essentially stalked by SLDS, the State Longitudinal Database? The State School Board doesn’t think so. Boiling down the  conflict about personal data, we get to two ideas; which one do you value more? It’s either: 1) –  Our Constitutional right to be free from “unreasonable search and seizure” […]

Open Letters: Common Core is Evil Posing as Good   10 comments

Dixie Allen, my State School Board Representative ————————— Sharing a long string of emails between my State School Board representative and me, from this week and last. ————————— Christel- I hope that given the time you have spent the last couple of years discussing this issue, that you would understand that Utah has already adopted […]

40 Questions for Common Core Debaters   7 comments

Utah radio personality Jason Williams of KVNU’s “For the People” has asked the public to submit questions for next week’s Common Core debate, which will take place at Mount Logan Middle School on January 6th, 2014, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. in Logan, Utah, at 875 N. 200 E. Submit questions to: jasonthe@gmail.com or kvnuftp@gmail.com. […]

It’s All About the Language: Applying Greenfield’s New Speak to Common Core   3 comments

If you scour the official Common Core websites, ed.gov website, and the official speeches of Secretary Duncan and President Obama and the Pearson CEA on education, as many of us have done, you may at first knit your eyebrows in confusion. It all sounds sweet. How would education reforms that use such pleasant words ever […]

School Counselors Required to Push Common Core   4 comments

I feel sorry for school guidance counselors. There’s a document out called “Role of the School Counselor in Utah Core” that says: “You [the guidance counselors] are often the first line of defense in honoring the validity of the Utah Core State Standards.” How many school counselors do you think became counselors so that they […]

Sec. Arne Duncan Makes a Personal Visit to Utah   5 comments

Carol S. Moss, Utah legislator, caused a bit of a splash when she posted this photo of herself with U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on Facebook this week. Rep. Moss must have felt it was an honor to meet Mr. Duncan. Some Utahns feel very differently. If you don’t know much about your U.S. […]

7 Links to Evidence of Federal Control of Common Core   9 comments

Folks, there can be no question that the federal government is using Common Core to take away our freedoms. So why do many people still believe that “there’s no federal control of Common Core”? Because trusted education leaders are not being forthright with –or are not in possession of– the truth. Here in Utah, for […]

Utah Mom Alyson Williams: The Common Core Standards That We Aren’t Talking About   15 comments

Utah Mom Alyson Williams’ razor-sharp wit and use of unarguable facts makes the speech she gave at a Common Core debate (with State School Board member Dixie Allen and two professors) a powerful tool in the national Stop Common Core arsenal. Below are her prepared remarks. The event was filmed and will be posted soon. […]

Translating Obama’s Four Pillars of Education Reform: JaKell Sullivan   4 comments

Yesterday’s excellent editorial in the Deseret News by JaKell Sullivan translates the four innocent-sounding pillars of Obama’s education reforms into plain English. The article points out: (The electronic links are mine) “The US Department of Education’s website details the four federal education reforms that 46 states are almost done implementing: 1 Adopt College-and-Career Ready standards […]

My, What Big Data Teeth you have, Grandmother: An Open Letter to Utah Legislators   10 comments

Dear Utah Legislator, I’m writing to you as a mother to ask you to put a stop to the use of Utah’s school systems as snooping agents on our children. Corporate and federal partnerships and Utah state data systems and interstate partnerships now watch and track our children without anyone having asked for parental consent […]

Senator Markey: Letter to Arne Duncan Questioning Student Data Collection Practices   9 comments

Democratic Massachusetts Senator Edward J. Markey has written a vital letter to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan about the loss of student privacy under new education reforms. The Senator asks the Secretary eight great questions. My favorite is question #2.a): “Should parents, not schools, have the right to control information about their children?” Senator […]

SIX THINGS THE US DEPT OF EDUCATION DID TO DEPRIVE YOUR CHILD OF PRIVACY   66 comments

The story of Common Core and data mining begins as most stories do, with a huge, unmet need. Self-appointed “stakeholder” know-it-alls at the federal level (also at state, corporate, and even university levels) determined that they had the right, and the need, for open access to personal student data– more so than they already had. […]

Alabama School Board Fights For Childrens’ Privacy   3 comments

Betty Peters of the Alabama State School Board is fighting for the privacy rights of children in Alabama by requesting documentation about what types of information is currently being disclosed without parental consent, and to whom. Below are draft versions of the requests. For more information about the shredding of parental rights under previously protective […]

Meetings in Logan, Heber, and Manti This Week – and How to Study If You Can’t Attend   2 comments

The following Common Core informational meetings are scheduled in Utah. — LOGAN: September 24th, 6 p.m. 29 South Main Street, Logan, Utah Speakers: Autumn Cook and Christel Swasey — HEBER: September 24th, 7 p.m. in the Senior Center at the Wasatch County Library Speakers: Alyson Williams and Jakell Sullivan — MANTI: September 26th, 7 p.m. […]

ABC Channel 4 and Deseret News: On Praying for Freedom from Common Core   4 comments

Reporters from both the Deseret News and ABC Channel 4 t.v. surprised me last week by asking for interviews –on the subject of prayer, which I’d written about a few days earlier. I was really, really surprised to learn that praying is perceived as news. Or, at least, asking people to pray is perceived as […]

Without Authority: The Federal Access of Private Data Using Common Core   5 comments

On Wednesday, I gave this talk at the Governor Hill Mansion in Augusta, Maine. I spoke alongside Erin Tuttle, Indiana mother against Common Core; Jamie Gass, of Pioneer Institute; Heidi Sampson, board member of the Maine State School Board, and Erika Russell, Maine mother against Common Core. I hope to publish the other speakers’ speeches […]

Right Under Our Noses: EIMAC   16 comments

My heart was pounding with indignation when I read today that the CCSSO (–that’s the State Superintendents’ Club– a private group, not accountable to the public and in no way under voters’ influence– the same group that created and copyrighted Common Core–) this CCSSO has a division called EIMAC. It stands for Education Information Management […]

Superintendent Joseph Rella’s Rally Against Common Core Propels Movement to Stop Common Core in New York State   6 comments

Superintendent Dr. Joseph Rella made a big, bold splash today when he led the unprecedented rally against Common Core as a school district leader. Dr. Rella’s letter to legislators, his phone call to parents, the rally he held at his high school football stadium today, and his statement that he is willing to risk losing […]

What Is Being Data-Mined Without Parental Consent?   18 comments

Even though the columns will be gone and it will be confusing and messy, I’m going to cut and paste a truckload of attributes from the National Data Collection model’s spreadsheet. You can click on the link to see the actual site and its spreadsheet so it’s not confusing or messy. http://nces.ed.gov/forum/datamodel/eiebrowser/techview.aspx?instance=studentElementarySecondary These are the […]

Three Things to Simplify Your Fight Against Common Core   2 comments

More and more sinister facts about Common Core are surfacing. Proponents are running scared. They are glossing over, avoiding, lying about and making fun of, those in possession of the powerful and ugly truths about Common Core. For example, there’s a taxpayer-funded Utah propaganda campaign that the Utah State School Board is to employ this […]

Utah Student Tracking in Edweek Article   1 comment

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/on_innovation/2013/08/utah_personalizes_learning_with_portable_records.html This week, an Edweek article focuses on Utah’s “robust” data collection system and portable “backpack” records that track students. The article doesn’t mention the fact that parents were never asked whether they wanted their children to be tracked (stalked) by the government. Nor does it mention the fact that parents have no recourse to […]

Dozens of Links Documenting Common Core System Far More Harmful Than Good   7 comments

Common Core Concerns Please click on the links to get to the original source documents that verify Common Core does far more damage than good. The Race to the Top Grant Application – In this, Utah got points toward possibly winning grant money. Points were awarded in this application for the state’s having a student-tracker, […]

TODAY: FEDERAL COURT TRIES U.S. DEPT OF ED. FOR DESTRUCTION OF FAMILY PRIVACY/CONSENT   8 comments

Today is big. The federal district court in Washington, D.C. is hearing arguments today from Khalia Barnes and Marc Rotenburg of the Electronic Privacy Information Center in support of nationwide student privacy, in support of parental consent laws, in support of protective definitions of terms. So, who on earth is on the opposite team? Who’s […]

Compulsory Education’s Unforeseen Consequences: Nebraska Case Studies   6 comments

Lately, there’s been quite a buzz about ending compulsory education. Utah Senator Aaron Osmond propelled the idea when he wrote a piece on this subject at the Utah Senate blog. Osmond pointed out that it is a “parental right to decide if and when a child will go to public school,” adding that “in a […]

U.S. Secretary of Ed to News Editors: Spin It Like Duncan   12 comments

Arne Duncan, U.S. Secretary of Education, is angry. How dare Americans demand freedom from nationalized testing, nationalized standards and data collection? In yesterday’s speech to the American Society of News Editors, Duncan said: “…This event has been an opportunity for federal leaders to talk about touchy subjects.  For example, you asked President Kennedy to talk about […]

You’re Invited: Saratoga Springs Tomorrow: Informational Meeting about Common Core   Leave a comment

You are invited to an informational meeting about Common Core. When and Where: June 20th from 7-9 pm at Talon’s Cove Golf Course: 2220 S. Talons Cove Drive, Saratoga Springs, Utah Who: Speakers include: Dr. Gary Thompson (Child psychologist), mothers/teachers who have thoroughly researched Common Core, and local school board members. State school board members […]

How Common Core and School Data Mining are Inseparable   7 comments

A growing number of the proponents of Common Core say they are opposed to the data mining that uses school-collected data. How does this position even make sense?  The two programs are so married.  1.  President Obama’s the  head cheerleader for both programs and he bundles them in his vision for education reform.  Part of the Race to […]

Source Documents for Common Core   11 comments

Nobody has to choose between relying on the proponents of Common Core, or relying on the opponents of Common Core. To find out what Common Core really is and does to education and to liberty, study for yourself. These are just a starter batch. There are more!  Some of these are Utah-specific.  If you are […]

Does Freedom of Religion Have Anything to do with Common Core?   3 comments

A student from Colorado wrote today, asking this question.  Does Common Core infringe on freedom of religion? I’m not a lawyer, but I am a thinker, and this is what I think: All freedoms depend on the most fundamental freedom, freedom of religion. The freedom to educate according to the dictates of local (parental and teacher) conscience is […]

Yet Another Teacher Speaks Out: a Letter to Utah Legislature   4 comments

“There is much more involved here, than just a list of standards… if all the facts were known, it would be more than obvious that the legislature would make the move to abandon Common Core.” – Recently retired Utah Teacher Margaret Wilkin Margaret Wilkin has given permission to post her letter to the Utah legislature.  […]

How Long Until Utah “Complies” With Federal Requests for Hundreds of Data Points on Individuals?   16 comments

Today I called Jerry Winkler, Utah Information Technology Director to ask questions about the federally paid-for  State Longitudinal Database System.  He was very gracious and I appreciated his willingness to answer questions. I asked him if he could verify the information I’d received from the state school board, that the reason that a Utah student […]

Salt Lake Tribune: School Board Denies Governor Herbert’s Request to Increase Local Control of Common Core   3 comments

Before I post the highlights from the Tribune article, I have to make a comment. I read the two USOE-created resolutions* cited below.  They are written by people who obviously do not understand the recently altered federal FERPA changes which have severely weakened student privacy and parental consent requirements, among other things.  One resolution used the […]

Missouri Congressman Luetkemeyer to Sec. Duncan: “We Formally Request A Detailed Description of Each Change to Student Privacy Policy”   3 comments

This letter from Representative Blaine Luetkemeyer of Missouri condemns the coercive nature of Common Core and formally requests a detailed description of alterations to student privacy policy made under Sec. Duncan’s leadership. Click link here to see which congressmen have cosigned.  http://massie.house.gov/sites/massie.house.gov/files/documents/commoncore.pdf  (THANK YOU CONGRESSMAN CHAFFETZ!)   April 20, 2013 The Honorable Arne Duncan Secretary U.S. Department […]

U.S.O.E. Informational Meetings on Common Core Tests: Clueless on the Big Issues   5 comments

Did you watch the Deseret News live feed of the Davis District meeting tonight? I had an “A-ha!” moment, as I again watched Judy Park of the Utah State Office of Education present information about the Common Core tests. I realized that Judy Park just does not know the answers to the big, big questions that are […]

Protecting Student Data   6 comments

Thanks to Alyson Williams and Utahns Against Common Core for providing the following. Protecting Student Data:  Becoming Informed About Personal & Behavioral Data Collection & Sharing Goal 1: Allow parents to opt out* of  testing and certain data tracking on behalf of their  children. Goal 2: Prohibit non-academic data  collection, i.e. behavior and  require disclosure of […]

Why Is Common Core Illegal?   14 comments

The 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution specifies that the federal government must refrain from micromanaging states and outlines a few roles for the federal government (NOT including education)  and gives ALL remaining authorities to the states alone.  Nothing could be clearer. There is no constitutional authority for the executive branch to be bossing states […]

Parents Demand Real Answers at Alpine District Meeting on Common Core A.I.R. Tests   9 comments

Yesterday I attended the Alpine School District meeting, where U.S.O.E. representative John Jesse, director of assessments, gave a presentation about the new Common Core testing system created by the American Institutes for Research (AIR).  I went with Alisa, Renee, my sister and others whose district is Alpine.  I wanted to compare the attitudes of parents and teachers […]

FBI and Dept of Ed Sued for Privacy Violations   4 comments

We knew that the Dept. of Education had been sued for violating student privacy by changing FERPA without congressional approval. But now we learn that the same company, EPIC (Electronic Privacy Information Center) has also sued the FBI for privacy-rights obliteration. Now, ponder those two lawsuits in the context of the White House’s “data-mashing” goals […]

Posted April 11, 2013 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

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Judy Park Introduces Common Core SAGE Tests to Wasatch School District   18 comments

Here’s an update for everyone here in the Heber Valley who didn’t attend tonight’s Wasatch School District presentation.  It was given by State Assistant Superintendent Judy Park  on the new Common Core SAGE (American Institues for Research) tests. If you live in Utah, please check the schedule and make sure you and everyone on your block attends when […]

Posted April 8, 2013 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Hogwash Alert: “National Review” on Common Core   53 comments

I’m calling for a hogwash alert on today’s National Review article about Common Core. The ironically titled  The Truth About Common Core article cannot be taken seriously.  It’s written without any links or references for its Common Core-promoting claims, and it’s written by two authors whose employers are largely funded by the main funder of all things Common Core. Can anyone take seriously those who […]

School Data Collection Facts Summary   40 comments

  Does every state have a federally funded, interoperable State Longitudinal Database System that tracks people throughout their lives?  Yes. Every state has accepted 100% federally funded data collection (SLDS). The Data Quality Campaign  states:  “every governor and chief state school officer has agreed to build statewide longitudinal data systems that can follow individual students […]

Top Ten Scariest People in Education Reform: #8 – Arne Duncan, U.S. Secretary of Education   19 comments

Arne Duncan:   U.S. Secretary of Education Countdown #8 This is the third in a countdown series of introductions, a list of the top ten scariest people leading education reform in America.  For number 9 and 10 click here. Before I begin,  let’s remember a few pesky laws that make it illegal for Arne Duncan’s Department of Education (as part […]

White House Hosts “Datapalooza” built on Common Core Tests   11 comments

Did you see the recent view that  Missouri Education Watchdog has taken on “Datapalooza” at the White House?  Most telling is a pleasant sounding speech by eScholar CEO Shawn T. Bay, given at the White House, in which he states that although aggregate data (not individual) is useful, it’s most useful to look at the individual consumer or the individual […]

Common Core Covered On Glenn Beck TV – March 14, 2013   3 comments

It was a privilege to speak with Glenn Beck on his t.v. show on Thursday, along with Utah teacher David Cox of  Odyssey Charter School , Emmett McGroarty of the American Principles Project, and Sherena Arrington of Stop Common Core in Georgia.  I’m posting three clips from the show. This first portion of the show is a clip of Glenn Beck introducing […]

Secretary Arne Duncan: Reading, Writing and Redefining Terms   6 comments

Words are powerful. Redefining words is risky business because the redefining can change everything. One who knows this truth is our nation’s Department of Education Secretary, Arne Duncan. He has a history of going out of his way to alter the definitions of words.  He did get the Department of Education sued  for doing this, but did anyone notice? Okay. Let’s start paying attention. Our […]

Department of Education Stealth in Data (Surveillance) Setup   86 comments

After a recent town hall meeting, I stood in line to mention to my visiting Congressman that the Department of Education had gone behind Congress’ back to alter FERPA (family privacy law) that circumvented parental consent and broadened definitions of who gets access to personal student data, including nonacademic and family data. This is, of course, dangerous […]

DATA COLLECTION UPDATE   1 comment

WHAT WE KNOW: 1. ALL UTAHNS ARE TRACKED VIA SCHOOLS USING A FEDERALLY PROMOTED AND PAID-FOR SLDS. I have an email from the State School Board that says there is no possibility for my student to opt out of being tracked. When a parent signs his/her child up for school, the information is gathered and […]

Wasatch County Republican Party Essay Contest   Leave a comment

The Wasatch County Republican Party has invited citizens to write essays answering the question: “How do conservative principles impact the happiness and prosperity of all Americans?” The winning essay will be presented at next week’s Lincoln Day breakfast, where Utah’s Governor Herbert, Senator Van Tassel, Senator Chaffetz, Representative Powell and many others will be in […]

Open Book Test On Common Core – For Parents   9 comments

The official Common Core websites make the program sound good.  The Department of Education promotes it.  The purveyors of Common Core implementation guides make it sound magnificent.  Many educators have said they support it. At the same time, research groups, think tanks, parent groups, university professors and increasingly, more and more teachers,  stand against it.  So who’s […]

Fox News: Feds Using K-12 to Illegally Access Personal Data – Interview with Emmett McGroarty, American Principles Project   3 comments

Fox News interviewed Emmett McGroarty of the American Principles Project concerning recent, federal moves that allow federal access to the private information of students nationwide. Things I am thinking as I watch this video: First: The Department of Education is, right now, in the middle of a lawsuit brought by another group, EPIC (Electronic Privacy Information Center).  EPIC […]

Weber County Republican Women’s Meeting Speech on Common Core   4 comments

Stop Common Core Talk given by Christel Swasey at the Weber County Republican Women’s Meeting Jan.7, 2013 A few months ago, a University of Utah exhibit displayed original documents, newspapers, books and letters written by Thomas Paine, Benjamin Franklin and many others. The exhibit did not only show the freedom fighters’ side of the argument, […]

Call to Action   Leave a comment

The Utah Legislative Session begins in two weeks. It is short. Please call legislators, state school board members and Governor Herbert and ask for the following: •   UT LEGISLATORS MUST WRITE FREEING LEGISLATION – Utah should reclaim its educational sovereignty by following the lead of states such as Indiana and South Carolina which are attempting to […]

Schools Are Sharing Private Information Via SLDS and P-20 State/Federal Systems   7 comments

Our schools (teachers, adminstrators, and even State Office of Education workers) are being used. –Used to collect private data, both academic and nonacademic, about our children and their families.  I choose the word “used” because I do not believe they are maliciously going behind parents’ backs.  They are simply expected to comply with whatever the U.S. Dept. of Education […]

Education isn’t Neutral   Leave a comment

What does Obama really mean when he says that he created education reforms in 46 states during his presidency? Words need context. The word “education” and the concept of “education reform” as Obama and others use the terms, rest on our false assumption that reforms are positive in all contexts. Many education reforms are being done under the […]

What is SLDS and Why Should I Care?   1 comment

SLDS means: Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems. SLDS is a citizen tracking program, and a grant program, that rewards states financially for participating.  It’s also called P-20, which stands for preschool through age 20 (workforce) tracking.  I see citizen tracking as creepy and Orwellian.  What do you see? The federal website shows, here– http://www2.ed.gov/programs/slds/factsheet.html &#8212; that SLDS was presented as a financial prize […]

You Are Invited: Open Meeting Nov. 13th State Federalism Subcommittee   Leave a comment

There are a ton of open governmental meetings that people don’t really know about, and thus few attend them. Here’s one: November 13th at 12:30 you– all of you– all of us, are invited to an open committee meeting at the Utah Senate Building, Olmstead room. The Federalism Subcommittee will be discussing whatever’s on their agenda.  […]

Look Behind You   4 comments

The federal government uses lots of different agencies– but increasingly, schools– to track us. It’s citizen surveillance.  But they call it research. I wrote to the Utah State Office of Education a few months ago to ask a simple yes or no question:  can my child attend public school without being specifically and individually tracked by name, […]

2012 FTC Alert: To Prevent Child Identity Theft at School   Leave a comment

FTC Consumer Alert:Protect Your Child’s Personal Information at School http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/alerts/alt056.shtm First, here are a few bullet points for readers in a hurry: children whose identities have been stolen usually don’t find out until they are adults. parents have the right to opt out of allowing schools to share child data with third parties. if you […]

Sir Michael Barber leads Common Core’s “Deliverology” via EDI and Pearson   2 comments

Question:  What do Sir Michael Barber, President Barack Obama, and your own children –unless you live in “Common Core-less” Texas or Virginia– each share? Answer:  Common Core national standards. –True, you won’t hear President Obama use the term “Common Core,” because he’s still saying Common Core is state-led.  But it’s a thin disguise wearing thinner by the minute: […]

State School Board This Week To Determine Citizen Privacy   2 comments

    Okay, this is a big one.  A dangerous one. This week, the Utah State School Board will meet to discuss whether or not to change state FERPA policy. Once Utah changes this policy, it will be next to impossible to get the privacy laws put back in place.  And it affects every student and […]

Today’s Report from State School Board Meeting   Leave a comment

   An attendee from today’s state school board meeting informs us that because Superintendent Shumway is resigning, a selection committee was formed to find a new state superintendent. According to the bylaws, this committee will select a new superintendent for approval by Governor Herbert.  The full board will not vote on this. –Utah needs lesiglation that changes the process as well […]

State School Board Meeting Today: To Bare Or Not To Bare Private Student And Family Data For Feds?   1 comment

    Sent today– TO: Board@schools.utah.gov Dear Board, I am writing to second Renee Braddy’s attached email.  As you are aware, a lawsuit is in full gear right now between the Department of Education and the Electronic Privacy Information Center, which alleges that the Department of Education overstepped statutory authority by redefining terms and loosening […]

Data Collection is Out of Control   Leave a comment

     Yes, the data collection push is out of control. Data collection issues and privacy rights were the last thing on my mind, until last April, when I learned what Common Core was (besides educational standards that are communizing America’s education).  When I learned that common core tests gather kids’ data that is nonacademic, personally identifiable, and […]

A 2012 Reading of Orwell’s 1984   Leave a comment

I borrowed 1984 and read it cover to cover this week. It’s a well-written, totally alarming book.  A screamingly important book. It’s a powerful warning against socialism. It’s also a graphic, atheistic, violent book that doesn’t offer any ray of hope.  So don’t read it if you haven’t.  I’ll give you the summary. Then I’ll […]

Influence the Republican Party Platform   3 comments

At this link, you can submit ideas for the Republican Party as they update the platform. http://www.gopplatform2012.com/ I submitted the following today, but had to shorten it because they only take a certain number of words.   COMMON CORE IS NOT ACADEMICALLY SOUND It is a fact that the only math professor on the official Common […]

Posted August 18, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Dr. Sandra Stotsky to Utah: We Can Write Higher, Better Standards — Free   Leave a comment

Dear School Board, Superintendent Shumway and Governor Herbert, I am writing to express my gratitude to those who were instrumental in yesterday’s vote to reverse Utah’s membership in the SBAC testing consortium.  It was a heroic moment and America is watching. Early on, when I read the Cooperative Agreement between the SBAC and the Department of Education, I was […]

Anissa Wardell and Tami Pyfer’s Email Exchange   1 comment

  A Heber citizen, Anissa Wardell, contacted the Utah State School board to ask whether Utah can still get out of Common Core (and write our own standards, using University input, an option also known as ESEA option #2) –after the waiver deadline of September 6, 2012.   Rather than answering the question, state school board […]

Now that the state admits they track PII on every kid, and our feds have requested data mashing…   Leave a comment

Dear Lorraine, Thank you!  I appreciate you going to the effort to find the answer to my question. I have a follow-up question. The Associate Superintendent over data collection said that USOE does not release student level data; could you tell me how long that policy will remain in place and where I can find […]

Let Freedom Ring In Education!   1 comment

  We have to get rid of the Common Core Initiative  –if we actually care about quality education and freedom over education. Why? I’ll start with a little intro– why I care: I  hold an up-to-date Utah Level II teaching license and I have nine years of experience in classrooms. I’m currently a stay-home-mother.  My most […]

USOE: The Answer is No. (–Can a Student Attend Public School Without Being P-20/SLDS Tracked?)   37 comments

Dear Utah School Board, Last week, I asked a simple yes or no question.  I received one response, and that board member did not say yes or not, but said he’d forward my question to Judy Park’s secretary.  I still have no answer. The question is simple:  Is it possible for a student in Utah […]

Control Over Education: More of the Debate Between Professor Wiley and Me   Leave a comment

David Wiley says: July 21, 2012 at 2:39 am Christel, Let me start by saying thanks to you as well. I think this conversation has been extra-ordinarily civil, despite our obvious differences of opinion. In today’s political realm, I can think of nothing more important than civility in discourse. So much of what could be productive […]

Sutherland Institute Advises Utah to Reject Common Core and Says USOE Claims are Misleading   2 comments

Reblogged from Sutherland Institute: http://www.sutherlandinstitute.org/news/2012/07/18/fact-checking-usoe-claims-on-common-core/ “…After several months of research, Sutherland Institute published a report recommending the state exit Common Core and agreements related to it. In this blog post, we have rated how true or false the USOE claims are, and explain our ratings based on our research. All page numbers refer to our […]

Posted July 25, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Does Defending the Constitution Require Rejecting Common Core?   3 comments

    What Thomas Jefferson wrote matters:  government gets its power “from the consent of the governed.” Without the consent of the people who are being told what to do, there is not a good or free government, but a system of subtle (or not-so-subtle) oppression. Common Core is a system of oppression, by this definition.  How? […]

BYU Professor David Wiley: Parents Don’t Need to Know   3 comments

  Professor David Wiley is to be applauded for engaging in actual debate on the Common Core/FERPA issue with people like me.  I appreciate it.  He is rare for being willing to discuss these things without resorting to dismissive name calling as others have done.  Here is what he posted today, along with what Kristen […]

David Wiley and the Utah State Office of Education Partnership   1 comment

A friend just sent me this link.  It’s sad.  http://www.schools.utah.gov/data/Educational-Data/Accountability-School-Performance/Utah-ESEA-Flexibility-Request.aspx     But it explains a lot.  It explains why Professor David Wiley is so passionately pro-common core, so defensive of the USOE and of the Dept. of Education’s terrible FERPA alterations that empowered the Common Core Initiative, and why he does not want to read […]

Alisa Ellis: To Wasatch School Board July 2012   Leave a comment

Mr. Judd, Thank you for taking the time last month to sit down with us as concerned citizens and listen to our concerns.  As I told you last month I would not be expending a lot of energy pushing for public comment about this policy. It’s unfortunate that the board decided to write a “non-policy” […]

‘Tis But A Scratch!   Leave a comment

In “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” a certain knight, while being slaughtered, is in stout denial. Each time he loses  a limb, he insists it’s nothing, no more than a scratch.  Soon limbless, still bouncing around, he’s full of confidence that he’s winning.    King Arthur: Now, stand aside, worthy adversary! Black Knight: ‘Tis but a scratch! King Arthur: […]

Personally Identifiable Information Set Loose By Dept. of Education   Leave a comment

Q:  Will personally identifiable student data now be allowed to be given out by schools with governmental and nongovernmental entities, both in-state and out of state?  A: YES.  Unless E.P.I.C. wins its lawsuit against the Department of Education, or unless Congress polices the Department of Education which is overstepping its authority, federal FERPA regulations will […]

A response to the USOE statement published Jul 10, 2012 by Brenda Hales   1 comment

To Whom It May Concern:   The following information directly conflicts with this week’s statement about Common Core and national educational reforms as published by the USOE at http://utahpubliceducation.org/2012/07/10/utahs-core-standards-assessments-and-privacy-regulations/. The following information has links to references so that you can verify what is claimed, unlike the unreferenced information given by the USOE.   1. Personally […]

Why the lawsuit filed against the U.S. Dept. of Education’s invasion of privacy matters   Leave a comment

Privacy Matters.  And it’s being robbed, literally, gradually, concertedly, by the U.S. Dept. of Education, of all crazy things.  How can I say this? Facts: Every state has been paid in the past two years, by the federal government to create an SLDS, a State Longitudinal Data System.  This is a citizen tracking system, calling […]

On Common Core: Dear Senator Mike Lee   2 comments

Dear Senator Lee, I’m writing to give evidence from the Race to the Top application, (under which Utah agreed to adopt Common Core standards) and evidence from the No Child Left Behind waiver that Utah just received from the Dept. of Education, to show states are being essentially forced to choose either NCLB or Common […]

The EPIC Lawsuit Against the U.S. Dept. of Education – This will be affecting old people too   Leave a comment

I got to talk with Khalia Barnes today about the legal action her company, EPIC (Electronic Privacy Information Center) has taken against the U.S. Department of Education.  Ms. Barnes said that they’ve had no press. No press!  The U.S. Department of Education is being sued for stepping outside the bounds of their statutory authority and […]

The Arne Duncan Plan: Rob Kids of the Opportunity to Ever Change Or Improve Academic Path   Leave a comment

Arne Duncan says he needs to control children via data-driven decisions.  This data will be collected via the Common Core testing system:  “… so that every child knows on every step of their educational trajectory what they’re going to do.” THIS IS NOT GOOD.  Children don’t always know what they want to be when they […]

Working Around the Fact that Common Core Math Dumbs Down Our Kids   Leave a comment

I am happy that James Judd is the new director of human resources at Wasatch School District because he is an open-minded man. He took over two hours yesterday, to listen and to discuss the possibility of writing a more parent-friendly, “fed-wary” FERPA policy, and he also discussed the Common Core math sequence with me […]

Why EPIC is Suing the Department of Education –and Why They Should Win   Leave a comment

The U.S. Department of Education has been sued. EPIC (The Electronic Privacy Information Center) sued the Dept. of Education– for 30+ reasons.  Good reasons.  Read them!  http://epic.org/apa/ferpa/EPIC-FERPA-Complaint.pdf EPIC (Electronic Privacy Information Center) The lawsuit is happening under the Administrative Procedure Act and says the Dept. of Education exceeded its statutory authority and acted out of accordance […]

It’s None of the Government’s Business – Part II – by Christel Swasey   1 comment

Before CNN reported on the federal government’s tracking of children (http://youtu.be/EkwN-cwC810) few people were aware that longitudinal databases had been built with federal grant money in every state to provide tracking data for state P-20 councils.  Or that P-20 councils even existed. But they do exist.  Yes, even Utah has a P-20 Workforce. As CNN’s Brooke […]

Federal Education Reforms and Why People of Faith Must Get Involved to Stop Them   1 comment

FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND RELIGIOUS SPEECH How does freedom of religion apply to new changes in education, such as the COMMON CORE and FERPA (Family Educational Rights Privacy Act) regulations?  Do these “educational reforms” not take away parental control of children’s data, and does not full implementation of Common Core nationalized education come with a federally perusable individual-child data collection […]

Local desire to protect student privacy conflicts with other agencies’ goals to examine private student data   Leave a comment

Dear School Board,  Thank you for allowing public comment.  I wrote before but I do have more to say. You might feel stuck between a rock and a hard place, stuck in the middle of negotiations, regulations, laws, local and state politics, and angry parents.  I imagine it feels like because you don’t have all […]

Utah School Board Member Asks To Be Taken Off Teacher’s Mailing List   Leave a comment

Dear Tami Pyfer,   I know you are busy and probably inundated with mail, but unfortunately, I cannot take you off the list of school board members with whom I am communicating as long as you are a valid member of this board.  http://schools.utah.gov/law/Administrative-Rules/ConsolidatedRules-CurrentThrough5-1-12.aspx The Utah Constitution, Article X, Section 3 vests “general control and […]

Please Contact Your School Boards If You Care About Family Privacy Law   Leave a comment

Dear Editor:  Few people know what has been happening to parental authority over children and their data.   In January, without Congressional approval, federal regulations of FERPA (The Family Education Right Privacy Act) were altered to loosen parental consent rules, providing “more flexibility” for outside entities to get student data. See http://www.jdsupra.com/post/documentViewer.aspx?fid=5aa4af34-8e67-4f42-8e6b-fe801c512c7a ).   Last […]

Nanny Us: Feds Combining Socialized HealthCare and Nationalized Education Inside Schools   Leave a comment

THIS IS A GUEST POST FROM SUSIE SCHELL:  ObamaCare Coming to a School Near You Two news stories caught my eye this week because they both deal with the federal takeover of Education and Health Care within our nation’s schools. The first is about Health Clinics on school campuses, and I’m not talking about supplying […]

CNN Video Clip and Parent Letter to Schools: On the Invasion of Privacy   Leave a comment

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1pwUSlqerg&feature=youtube_gdata_player This important video begins with a CNN clip describing the Dept. of Education’s recent steps that make it easier for federal forces to see massive amounts of personal information. Then the video moves to an Oklahoma Educational group’s conference that explains what P-20 means (preschool to age 20) and why states have P-20 councils and workforces to […]

You Are SO Not Alone in Thinking Common Core is Ridiculous   Leave a comment

Organizations  and People Against Common Core: Heritage Foundation CATO Institute Pioneer Institute Utah Eagle Forum Joyce & Dick Kinmont Family LDS Home Educators Assn. American Leadership Fund Standard of Liberty Proper Role of Government United Women’s Forum Principled Liberty Foundation Citizens for Strong Families Freedom for Utah Education Thomas Jefferson Center for Constitutional Studies Senator Michael […]

Governor Herbert: Please Do Not Re-Appoint Leslie Castle to Utah’s State School Board   5 comments

Dear Governor Herbert, As you are in the process of selecting some members of the State School Board, I ask that you do not select Leslie Castle for another term, based on two things: 1.  She does not know what the U.S. Constitution is about, nor does she value freedom for Utah. She fails to […]

What is Common Core? Top 10 Things To Study   1 comment

What is the Common Core? Rather than simply tell you what I think it is, I will show two schools of thought and have you make your own determination about what Common Core is. If you read the definition set out by the Utah State Office of Education or your local school district, you’ll think Common Core is […]

Does Freedom Even Matter to the Utah State School Board? The Board versus a teacher –me.   Leave a comment

A voting member of the Utah State School Board wrote in an email to me this week that freedom was not as important as equality.  Stop.  Did you read that?  This is America. A top Utah educator, with power over education that not even our legislators hold, said this. Please read it again. Here, read the entire […]

And Now, A Vocabulary List   Leave a comment

A big difference between the pushers of Common Core and normal people is this: The Common Core pushers are experts on speaking in euphemisms and in acronyms. We ask for clarity, but this is never supplied by the pushers. Even state educators fall for the “eduspeak” and soon join the top Common Core pushers, who label those of us asking for […]

Freedom versus Equality: what I think versus what the State School Board thinks   2 comments

I would never have imagined, a month ago, before I started to study Common Core, that there were members of the Utah State School Board and a top lawyer of the Utah State Office of Education who believed that genuinely high educational standards and actual freedom were unimportant in comparison to guaranteed equality of education. The USOE lawyer, (responding to my question […]

BYU Professor Wiley   Leave a comment

Dear Professor Wiley, I read your article in the Deseret News, extolling Common Core. http://www.deseretnews.com/user/comments/765571454/Utah-should-adopt-the-Common-Core.html I must respond. I’m a BYU alum, too.  B.A. in English, M.A. in Communications.  I’m also a teacher (Cal State San Bernardino K-12 credential) and have been an adjunct professor (UVU, English). A few questions on Common Core: 1.  Do […]

Posted April 26, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

If the Founding Fathers Came to Heber City   Leave a comment

There is wisdom in acknowledging the inspiration of our Founding Fathers and in supporting political candidates who are truly dedicated to the Constitution in the tradition of our Founding Fathers. Likewise, we should support school boards who show by their actions that they are truly dedicated to the Constitution in the tradition of our Founding Fathers. I do […]

WHY WASATCH SCHOOL BOARD HID DELETION OF PARENTAL CONSENT PRIVACY LAWS   Leave a comment

I was so angry last night after coming home from the local Wasatch School Board meeting.  Here’s why.  That arrogant board had the audacity to delete parental consent in privacy laws in schools, and they did it secretively, quickly and in code –so no one knew what was going on.  (Except a handful of watchdogs like me […]

Posted April 20, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Letter to USOE / Sydnee Dickson about Deseret News article   Leave a comment

Dear U.S.O.E. / Sydnee Dickson, I read Ben Woods’ well researched article in the Deseret News yesterday. You were quoted: “I have yet to hear any of the political comments [against Common Core] that are valid,” Dickson said. “It’s all steeped in fear and not fact.” There is a teacher (me) who is not only […]

Posted April 18, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Letter from Rosie Bahr: Longitudinal databases track students and families from preschool through career   1 comment

Ms. Swasey, I recently received a forwarded copy of your email regarding common core and couldn’t agree more. Thank you for speaking out and for raising awareness about the issue. I sent letters to State School Board, Governor Herbert, PTA president, Congressmen and Senators a couple of months ago. The responses I have received, and […]

Posted April 16, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Evidence and Links   2 comments

Evidence and Links   A rising number of teachers, parents and taxpayers are expressing concerns about Utah’s adoption of the Common Core Initiative (CCI), its accompanying federal standards for states (CCSS) and its federally overseen and controlled testing arm (SBAC). Why? 1.   Utah did not seek out CCI; the initiative was presented as an eligibility […]

Posted April 12, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Plea to Utah Attorney General – April 2012   4 comments

  Dear Utah Attorney General,   I am not a lawyer.  I am a teacher of high school English, third grade, and college English at UVU.  I’ve written education grants for schools in Utah County.  I’ve written for newspapers.  I translate documents from English to Swedish as I am currently staying at home with a […]

Posted April 11, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

What’s so bad about Common Core?   Leave a comment

How the Common Core Educational Initiative hurts kids, teachers, parent rights and Utah’s budget Why are many Utah teachers and parents questioning Utah’s adoption of Common Core Education and the SBAC tests?   No cost analysis was done before Utah adopted Common Core. No legislative input has been used to consider Common Core and the public doesn’t […]

Posted April 6, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

Opinion Editorial #1: What is Common Core?   Leave a comment

I wrote this article which was published in Heber Valley’s Wasatch Wave in March 2012. What Is Common Core? by Christel Swasey One week ago, all I knew about Common Core was that the high school had adopted new teaching methods for math, because my high school daughter and her guidance counselor had mentioned not liking […]

Posted April 6, 2012 by Christel Swasey in Uncategorized

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