FOM: Update on Christian Schools and Common Core

It's Friday, you know what that means! Time to measure what's truth, what's fallacy/fib or what's in between.
It’s Friday, you know what that means! Time to measure what’s truth, what’s fallacy/fib or what’s in between.

Do to overwhelming response to my post today, I’m updating it to include all kinds of the information about Common Core in private, Christian schools. It has been epic in proportion!!!
First up, the original post included 2 photos will you notice are now removed at the request of the family involved. I am hereby rendering a public apology to any one who has been upset. My intent was to help raise awareness about how stealthily schools are implementing Common Core in private schools, Christian OR not.

It’s important to note, there are several parents, across the nation who WANT to get rid of Common Core, BUT like their schools. How you can help Fib-o-Meter Fridays: IF you have an issue you’ve seen in your school, or found something in your fight against CC worth exposing, let me know! We’ll get it out there to help spread awareness, expose the truth, AND give credible evidence to those in charge!!

Way Back “When”:

Before I had a blog of my own, I wrote several guest anti-CCSS posts on another blog. I’ve referred to LadyLiberty1885 several times. She and I met in the fight against Common Core here in NC. For today’s Fib-O-Meter Friday, I’ll be referring to one of my guest posts about how Common Core is in Christian private schools AND share with you some about a mom who’s just discovered how her child’s schools is giving CC to students, yet denying it.

First Up, the original:

For the entire post, see: http://ladyliberty1885.com/2014/07/07/guest-post-common-core-in-charters-private-homeschools/

An excerpt that’s still relevant: 

“The Common Core Propaganda Machine has to be recognized for the outstanding job it has done in the Common Core Standards nightmare. Why without it, we wouldn’t be under the impression that Common Core Standards are exclusive to public schools.

Without such ‘truth’ in our possession, it is no wonder more Americans (assuming you’ve heard of Common Core) relax a bit when they realize, ‘oh my kid is in a ___________ school!’ (you get to fill in the blank with “private”, “charter”, “home”.)”

Pointers We Need that Contain “Total Truths” about the “Total Fallacy” of CC:

1) CC seeks to render school choice void. While ‘choice’ is teased, look beneath the surface and more than likely CC is there.

2) More schools outside the public realm are choosing to align to the illegally implemented Standards because the fallacy of ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ has been ramped up to include your students futures.

3) National Associations governed by those who a) don’t know the whole story about CC; b) don’t care about the whole story; c) know it, yet use a don’t ask, don’t tell approach. In the original post (above) you’ll find just how the NAs joined to private schools have chosen to act.

4) For home education, many resources are out there ‘riding the fence’. That said, I believe it’s to continue to offer choice. Some homeschoolers seek to follow the mainstream, while others wish to follow their own lesson plans. A wonderful resource I suggest often (includes not only curricula, subjects, but has assessments, too), is the Homeschool Road Map’s Common Core Project by Tina Hollenbeck. To date, this is the only database I know of where things are broken down by ‘aligned to CC’, ‘somewhat’, or ‘independent of CC’.

Access to Mrs. Hollenbeck’s resource: http://www.hsroadmap.org/common-core-project/

Today’s Mom:

The mom who contacted me just yesterday about CC in her child’s private Christian school, had this to say, “Hi Lynne, is McGraw-Hill aligned with CC?” My response, “Yes, they are absolutely aligned.” Then “Mom” again, “And what about Harcourt Achieve Inc?” Harcourt, Achieve are 100% into ccss.” Finally from “Mom”, “I thought so. Our son is in a private Christian school too. Haven’t seen any crazy CC math…yet, but have seen 2 papers with unclear instructions. Thanks.” 

It was also shared that the leader of the class was contacted about confusing instructions; that the school had been repeatedly asked about the use of Common Core at all in the Christian private school. It was stated CC wouldn’t be an issue. Yet, why is this family, like others across America, receiving CC homeschool, curricula at their child’s private school? (for those answers, scroll back up to see the 4 main points)
I can tell you after, checking out the school’s policy, I noticed at least 3 subjects aligned on purpose to Common Core!! I’m only including information about those 3. I urge you, as a parent who may have students involved in any of these programs to learn more! Get involved and remove ANYTHING CC from your school (private, home, extra curricular, etc.)

The 3 subjects this Christian private school uses with CCSS:

  • Accelerated Reader Program
  • Math Stars Program
  •  Odyssey of the Minds

About ‘Math Stars’:

See the screen shot below,

No question here. The state depts of public instruction mentioned here all use CCSS.
No question here. The state depts of public instruction mentioned here all use CCSS.

See the entire “Math Stars” documents: http://mathlearnnc.sharpschool.com/resources/instructional_resources/other_dpi_math_resources/superstars_math_i_i_i_problem_solving_program/

Odyssey of the Mind:

While not in the same region of NC that Winston-Salem is in , I did find the Coastal Region’s OOM Parent guide which contains all the ways Oydessy of the Mind aligns to not only Common Core, but STEM and those 21st Century Learning Skills!! Here’s a screen shot:
oddmind

See the rest of the Parents Guide: http://www.odysseyofthemind.com/downloads/stem_parent_brochure.pdf

Note: Think STEM is not a part of CC? See my post from 2014, PCAST, STEM and Common Core: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/09/02/from-the-files-pcast-stem-and-common-core/

As far the Language Arts this particular school uses, we already have evidence it’s CC aligned, but here’s a link, http://www.commoncoresolutions.com/

Note: An interesting look at how Accelerated Reading Programs are constructed, taught, and assessed: http://scholarworks.wmich.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1130&context=reading_horizon

The Comments:

From Twitter, the best responses; “How do we get the Gov’t out of state ed?”

From Facebook, the best responses; “That’s what happens when these private schools buy texts from companies using common core. The text supposedly are CC aligned, but also supposedly not all CC. BUT even supposed non-CC lesson have common core in them.”; Wow!! I’d be livid!! Everyone I met last year on the private school tours were going there to get away from common core. Can’t imagine a school denying it! How wrong!!”; ” it is frightening because it seems ALL SCHOOLS–private/Christian included are getting on the CCSS bandwagon. They try to pretend they are not when directly asked and then when parents concerned about “accountability” ask–they say “yes we are aligned with the state standards and follow a curricula that enables the students to blah, blah..blah….”; “We’ve looked at many private schools in the area now and there seems to be a definite polarization–the schools for the rich are real “college-prep factories” for high achievers, and a lot of the same CCSS lingo is used but they are actually supporting their students to get there–some more so than others.”; “my daughter came home – 8 year old daughter, with a Judy Blume book today from said, private Christian school. I need heart attack meds.”; This is a huge problem because Christian schools often slobber over accreditation committees and generally have an inferiority complex about curriculum and want to be accepted. But even Christian College education departments are often pro Common Core and have no concept of parent anger over it.”; ” Oh my gosh!!! Yes, yes, yes!!! My daughters VERY expensive private school is insisting they are not using common core YET which math book are they using: Every day math with “common core aligned” right on the cover. And still saying they don’t use common core – I can’t understand how they say that with a straight face?”; “Why we must stop common core before it takes the choice out of private schooling, homeschooling and college.”; ” NO! not Odyssey…a very sad day indeed.”; and, finally, screw the state!”

From a NY Warrior has granted use of this evidence for not only private schools, but others in NY, click to enlarge:
10959734_10152645360773359_5954471038142553055_n

Closing: 

So, as far as the Fib-o-Meter’s stance on Christian private schools and CC, I’d say it’s done a great job of exposing fallacies passed off as ‘nothing to be concerned about’.

Did today’s post stir a Common Core pot? Absolutely, but based on just these FEW comments I’ve shared, I would say it’s a pot that MUST be stirred.

I sincerely thank the parents who contact me in an effort to fight Common Core. That takes plenty of courage. To desire to keep their educational choice as is AND remain CC-Free, is, I believe, their Constitutionally protected privilege. Join me, help parents like this FIGHT Common Core IN ALL Educational Choices!!

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6 thoughts on “FOM: Update on Christian Schools and Common Core

  1. Are you looking into PARRC as well? Thanks for this great article, my daughter goes to public school in Howell NJ as she can’t get the IEP she needs at the local Christian schools (catholic, yes, but not traditional Christian) and we are dealing with the PARRC and CC nightmares. Many parents hate it, yet they allow it because they don’t think they can fight it. A small handful of parents are fighting it, I just joined the bandwagon. It’s tragic what governments and boards think they can do. Our governor, who I supported, even lambasted the parents who are crying out against PARRC. It’s terrible. I wish the ACLJ could get involved, ACLU is and as a Christiani really don’t want to go through them to fight this. If ACLJ won’t help, then I may be forced to.

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  2. Here is my question to you: What year are we preparing our students for? 2015-2027?
    We can’t continue to teach students the way we always have. We’ve got to make the goals and expectations more rigorous. CC is NOT a curriculum!!! It is a set of goals and expectations. In fact, CC has not approved any curriculum. Textbook companies try to align their material to the CC standards (goals & expectations).
    I feel that private and christian schools should definitely have a choice in what they teach and how they teach it. However, CC is not as scary as some are making it seem. Personally, I believe the standards help prepare the students to be successful adults.

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  3. My children go to a Catholic School in south LA. Two years ago our diocese informed us that we would be transitioning into a new Curriculum utilizing the “College and Career Readiness Standards.” Currently our K-7th graders are considered to be fully aligned (8-12 are transitioning this year). Several parents in our diocese are in disagreement with these standards and have made it very well known. What is very disheartening is that even though the Catholic Faith promotes the Parents as being the Primary Educators, the diocese disrespects the parents concerns and are asked to “trust” them. When parents question why we should trust them, the response is because of the usual talking points, higher standards, rigorous, critical thinking, deeper learning, blah, blah. The informed parents are aware that there is no answer because CCSS is NOT research based nor internationally benchmarked as claimed. In our schools the entire style of teaching has changed, new math is being taught, and I also feel our ELA has become less rigorous. In south LA the catholic schools have always had a good reputation and parents do everything they can to send their children there because of the “higher standards.” However, what I have learned is that the LA Standards have generally been high, but the problem is the poverty is this area is terrible (there is truly a direct correlation to the standards and poverty rates). Besides the fact that our catholic schools have historically outperformed the public schools, catholic schools were known to prepare students for College and Careers (over 99% of our students graduate). But most importantly, it is the understanding of the parents that send their children to catholic schools, that the Catholic Faith should guide the curricula, textbooks, and resources. Parents were concerned about textbooks and we were told that we would not be getting new textbooks, but that is something they cannot totally control since textbook companies are aligning to the standards. We have not gotten new textbooks, but two years after the implementation, our children are using CC aligned Workbooks, and barely use their textbooks because the teachers are supplementing from other CC resources. Following CCSS could cause the Catholic Schools to loose their Catholic Identity and move away from classical catholic teachings. I am aware that CCSS are “just” standards and not a curriculum, but it DRIVES curriculum. I am not sure why Catholic Schools did not take a “wait and see” approach before jumping into these “higher” standards.

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  4. My son attends a NC Christian private school and parents have been informed the school is switching to Core Knowledge Language Arts. Is this curriculum aligned with the Common core standards and is their a website to find out what Christian school curriculum is aligned to the common core standards?

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