Tech Thursday: More Alexander, HEA, and the Next America

Part two of the look at the recent conference discussing the re-authorization of the Higher Education Act.
Part two of the look at the recent conference discussing the re-authorization of the Higher Education Act.

In today’s post, we pick up where the CCSS/CTE trail left off from yesterday. That is the “Next America” Conference held recently. Sen. Alexander, Ted Mitchell, and the others you see above all spoke. We looked at Mr. Mitchell’s speech yesterday. Today, it is an opportunity to hear what the Senator said. We’ll also look at what the panel had to share as well. Will there by more Common Core/Career and Technical Education speak?

The Video Archive of the Conference:

Once again, here’s the You Tube video of the conference hosted by “National Journal”, the Gates Foundation, and Lumina.

Sen. Alexander’s portion of the Conference begins at the 1 hour, 23 minute mark. Interestingly enough, his speech isn’t nearly as long as his predecessor, Ted Mitchell, but his speech is full of things we anti CCSS Warriors need to know…and fight. If you missed part one (Mr. Mitchell’s speech and a brief look at the hosts of the “Next America” conference [exposes their ties to the CCSS Machine], see: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/10/wybi-sen-alexander-the-hea-and-next-america/)

Pride Goes Before a Fall:

One thing we’ve seen in those pushing the CCSS/CTE legislation, is their pride in the belief that all this reform and alignment is the greatest thing since sliced bread. IF the person is a politician, the pride factor of how they’ve been key to this is doubled. Below are the key times and CCSS/CTE catch phrases from Sen. Alexander. His speech begins with a ‘gloom and doom’ statement about America being 5 million jobs short by 2020 because we won’t have enough properly skilled post-secondary trained graduates. (as stated above, Alexander’s speaking begins at the 1 hour, 23 minute mark).

From that point to near 1:25, Alexander condemns K-12 education as well as give you a brief history lesson about post secondary education. Then, three key agenda items to be written into the re-authorized version of  the Higher Education Act (HEA).
1) reduce the red tape which regulates Higher Ed
2) stop the ‘kids can’t afford college’ lie
3) make college more affordable
(*Note: when you see this, notice what document he holds up with pride. It’s the ‘blueprint’ for exactly how this 3 top priorities (he’ll go on to tell you the blueprint has 59 changes). If you don’t have this blueprint, you need it. It is full of just how CCSS/CTE friendly the HEA will become. See: Regulations_Task_Force_Report_2015_FINAL Be sure to listen for the other key legislators the Senator keeps naming. We need to look further into their part in all this (at a later time).

1:27-1:32, you’ll hear how those top 3 priorities are now suddenly 5 steps. Be sure to listen for the Medicare funding connection; the filling out the FASFA (which would be re-named) in your students junior year of high school (‘we must get them started even earlier’); how College Board’s opinion is of importance; and how ‘free’ (or ‘nearly free’) colleges can be.
(*Note: The Senator will compare student loans to car loans to make his points)

Alexander’s speech ends at 1:34. Then, it’s on to the one-on-one talk with one of the hosts. This is the part of the video you need to have a piece of paper and something to write with.

1:35 his work with Sen. Murray to fix NCLB by Sept. 2015
He also mentions the “Fast Act”.(see: http://www.help.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Final_draft_Onepager%20for%20fin%20aid%20bill%20with%20Bennet.pdf)

1:36 getting all this new technology into post-secondary education
1:38 (and several other times) ‘skin in the game’ reference. This relates to having colleges join in on student debts.
1:39 broadening incentives to colleges
1:40 broadening mandates with incentives (uses TN’s community colleges as an example)
1:41 that ‘other’ white paper on student data collection
1:43 refers to Ted Mitchell (US Dept of Ed)’s college rating system and data collection
1:44 listen for the ‘ax grinding’ or grudge that Alexander displays toward the U.S. Dept. of Ed and how he now can address it via legislation.
1:45 repeats broadening incentives
1:46 admits he blocked votes
1:47 mentions Elizabeth Warren’s plan for public college and debt free students
1:48 ‘free’ or ‘nearly free’; ‘average’ (all referring to the cost of college. I’m not sure how much college costs have been studied by the Senator or his staff. The figures he gives are ridiculously low)

The Assorted Other Speakers at Next America:

As in part one, I shared with you how the Gates Foundation and Lumina were both not only hosts of the Conference, but speakers as well. I encouraged you to look at each of the biographies for these assorted members of the panel. It is at the 1 hour, 50 minutes mark, the balance of those featured in the above picture, gather to speak about all that’s been shared thus far. If you’re looking for indoctrinated talk, you’re in for a treat. The Q/A begins with modern innovations in the classroom.

1:56 ‘lots the federal government CAN do and SHOULD do.’
(*Note: start counting how many times ‘outcome based’ education or funding is used from this point on.)

Other statements you’ll want to know were spoken:
*Having employers become part of the post-secondary accreditation mix so that college is relevant and can respond to businesses.
*Need for more data heaviness
*Culture shift in higher education
*How more states are participating in performance education based funding and how many more should be participating.
*Data learning outcome based statistics
*STEM degrees
*No quick track for education/graduation
*Collecting student/school data and publicizing it
*Risk taking by colleges; federal government pushing institutions to comply (‘islands of excellence’)
*Have or re-vamp existing ‘outcome based education framework’
*Get that degree any way you can
*Data-lifting the student ban
*College degrees to better help graduates in the Work Force

Related resources NOT part of the Conference:

1) The 2006 Spellings Report for Higher Education (see how much of the CCSS/CTE main themes are in this older report): 2006 hea spellings
2) The ‘Realignment of High School’ (with the ESEA rewrite and the HEA rewrite being overseen by the same education reformer, we need to see how much of what’s reported here is part/parcel of the newer versions of the ESEA/HEA)
Reinventing_American_High_School
3) Gates Foundation’s post-secondary agenda items (how many of these will end up in legislation?) Gates Higher Ed policies
4) The House of Representatives HEA paper: hea_whitepaper

Closing:

As a follow up to today’s article, be sure to read the “Fib-o-Meter” Friday article coming tomorrow. I’ll connect the dots on how community colleges (so overstressed in this conference as the answer America needs) are so entrenched with CCSS/CTE.

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