Tag Archives: 115th Session

When “Choice” Really Means “Confinement”

Anti Fed Ed Warriors, this is my second article on the federal overreach into education by the 116th Congress.

So, far we’ve seen the HR 62’s grab for our little learners with shifting Head Start and Early Head Start funds to block grants your Governor’s will be in charge of. The hidden in plain sight agenda there? “School choice”, especially via vouchers for low-income families.
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Since ESSA codified Common Core and ALL that goes with it, let’s remember what ‘school choice’ REALLY looks like in 2019:

 

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For today’s article, it’s HR 69, the ‘‘Ending Common Core  and Expanding School Choice Act’’.
This bill is 6 pages long and is sponsored by Rep. Bill Riggs from AZ. There’s one co-sponsor from CO (Rep. Doug Lamborn).
HR 69 is in the hands of the House’s Education and Labor Committee.

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Warriors
, before you break out the champagne and burn your anti Common Core t-shirts, let’s dig into this Bill as well as some breaking announcements from around the education news circuits which connect to ‘ending Common Core’.

 NO State has gotten rid of Common Core, it’s re-brands, assessments, resources, curriculum, professional development, etc. The ‘name’Common Core might be missing, but it is still there. You know it’s been proven repeatedly on my blog and others!
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SO, does HR 69 get rid of Common Core or does it champion school choice?! Look at these tweets from Rep. Biggs. Do you see what’s missing?

From Jan. 24, 2019:

On the 25th of January, rather than promote the HR 69’s intent to “End Common Core”, Biggs once again touts ‘school choice’. Warriors, don’t you think if your Bill had the first three words as “Ending Common Core” that you’d shout it from the mountain tops?!


In this Tweet, near the time HR 69 was introduced in the 116th (1/3/19), note the promise Biggs felt was honored:

 

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First up: The Fine Print:


Warriors,  HR 69 has “End Common Core” in its title, but does it REALLY end CCSS?!
Let’s find out!

As I stated, this bill is only 6 pages long, the first 3 and 1/2 pages are devoted to expanding school choice via ‘money following the child’ schemes.

HR 69 also is targeting the money toward low-income families. This is dangerous in the false hope it gives. Money following the child is a worn out CCSS Machine tactic to attract those outside the current education system and draws them in, only to be trapped in the alignment. Homeschoolers are also among those targeted by ‘school choice’.

On Page 4, nearly at the bottom is ONE paragraph devoted to actually mentioning ‘Common Core’ and its supposed end.
But look how Rep. Biggs worded it. This, is not only a deception, it’s a waste of taxpayer money to even print this Bill!

Warriors, if you cannot read the excerpt from the bottom of Page 4, here it is, along with the balance of the paragraph on Page 5:
‘‘SEC. 1113. RULES OF CONSTRUCTION.  ‘‘(a) IN GENERAL.—No officer or employee of the  Federal Government shall, through grants, contracts, or other cooperative agreements, mandate, direct, or control  a State, local educational agency, or school’s specific instructional content, academic standards and assessments, curricula, or program of instruction (including any requirement, direction, or mandate to adopt the Common
 Core State Standards developed under the Common Core State Standards Initiative, any other academic standards  common to a significant number of States, or any assessment, instructional content, or curriculum aligned to such  standards), nor shall anything in this Act be construed to authorize such officer or employee to do so. “

As I stated in the screen shot, there’s no need to stress that States are not to be forced into ADOPTING Common Core, that has already happened via RttT (Race to the Top) AND ESSA!

ESSA also removes ‘school choice’ as we knew it. How? The mandate for all education to be aligned to the same workforce based standards (teaching, resources, assessments, and, curricula) as laid out by WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act).

HSLDA Joins Jeb’s Yellow Scarves:

Warriors, back in 2018, I published an article which featured a scathing expose on Jeb Bush’s involvement with National School Choice Week and the iconic yellow scarves used to signify support.

Congress has embraced this annual CCSS Machine laced week. Rep. Biggs, among them. However, he is far from the only Congress member who supports and (falsely) believes ‘choice’ (meaning the type of education learned/taught) still exists.

Since ESSA’s passage, ‘choice’ is only applicable to location. So, those very so-called champions of education who keep telling the nation education isn’t defined by zip code, are in essence, MAKING education defined by zip codes. The very agenda they say they ‘hate’ is one they are backing 100%. Will we continue to support these double-speaking educrats?!

Remember, earlier I stated homeschoolers were being drawn in the school choice debacle?

HSLDA, Homeschool Legal Defense Association has come out of the shadows and into the spotlight. In this HSLDA press release you see how the organization is using ‘school choice’ to equate to educational freedoms. Sure, back before ESSA, we had educational freedoms. A few still exist, but, Warriors, the longer we see the ESSA mandates continue to increase (like those in-visits and the birth to 5 yrs overreaches), the freedoms will totally disappear.

Warriors, if you look more closely to what other CCSS Machine items HSLDA supports, you may be surprised. What may those be? Career Technical Education, education savings accounts, apprenticeships, and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math).  Frankly, I’m glad to see HSLDA remove all the behind the scenes support for the CCSS Machine and come out blazing. It means all the illusions of the past few years have been shattered.

 

CCSS/CTE impacts ALL educational choices, don’t be fooled!

Here Comes Betsy!

On January 23rd, during “School Choice Week” Sec. of Education, DeVos was reported as saying it’s imperative Congress support school vouchers and thereby school choice. The Daily Signal’s article tells the entire story.

In January, and on the U.S. Dept. of Education’s blog, a ‘myth vs fact’ guide to ‘school choice’ has been provided. However, it paints those opposed to school choice as somehow the problem. How like the federal government to point the finger at citizens rather than admit the reality of THEIR lies.

Related Resources:
1) To see the Paradise Valley Community College/Chamber of Commerce connections which connect to the AZ charter school featured in the first Biggs Tweet picture, go here. To see the AZ Chamber of Commerce News about this, go here.
2) Paradise Community College is a part of the Maricopa Community College District in Phoenix, AZ. Maricopa Community College District is tied to the League for Innovation in Community Colleges (LICC). LICC has received grant awards from the Gates Foundation. LICC also has Pearson Publishing and WalMart (among others) as partners. LICC also is a nationwide organization.
3) To read Rep. Biggs’ “Freedom Friday” post about HR 69, that’s located here.
4) To see Rep. Lamborn’s pro-ESSA stance, as well as his belief in school vouchers and ESAs (education savings accounts), read this.
5) Rep. Biggs’ Campaign contributions show that the Koch Industries (as in Koch Brothers, part of the CCSS Machine) was among the funding groups.
6) To see my collection of HOW many ways the CCSS Machine has already infiltrated homeschooling, go here.
7) Since the CCSS Machine’s ultimate goal is total control of our children (and ourselves), we see parental rights eroding a bit slower than school choice is disappearing. We know the ESSA mandates for family involvement and student success mean those in-home tracking visits (see the very first part of this article).
However, Illinois has just shared that a bill which FURTHER takes parental rights away is in the works. The Bill also will factor directly into home visits and family involvement. It’s called the Parental Bullying Bill.  The way in which this Bill will also add to the CCSS Machine’s control of children is through ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences) and mental/behavior health interventions. Most certainly all this will be included in ‘school choice’ options. (*Note: I am not condoning parental bullying in its true form, however, the broad strokes being used against parents needs to be of concern.)

Closing:

Warriors, my next article in the latest Congressional overreaches will look at the increase in educratic powers the NSF, National Science Foundation, is set for.

 

Current Nat’l Science Foundation work for CCSS includes professional development (for the teachers, leaders), infrastructure (computers, software), research (as in mind, education, etc.) and assessments (tests that measure)

 

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Uninvited Guests

Warriors Against the CCSS Machine, we’ve known for a while that the ‘uninvited guests’ in our educational system have done us no favors. We know that Congress’s participation in the CCSS Machine is just plain awful. It shouldn’t be happening, but it is.

We also know the amount of federal legislation in existence (which is so ‘anti-Constitution’) could bury any one of us. This is way it’s great to have so many of us working together.

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Fighting so ALL may be independent of the CCSS Machine!

Warriors, we’ve got more ‘uninvited guests’ (aka: Congressional bills) waiting for us to learn about and fight against.

HR 2859, “Advancing Competency Based Education Act of 2017”:

This bill was introduced back in June 2017 by no less than 8 sponsors and co-sponsors in the US House of Representatives. Representatives Polis , Messer, Davis(CA), Takano,
Espaillat, Scott(VA),  Sablan, and, Davis(IL).

It’s been in the House’s Education and Workforce Committee since then. Why is that a concern for 2018? Because it can be rolled out of Committee at any time, during this 115th Session, or, tweaked a bit and re-introduced in future Sessions. Also, consider the chairwoman of this Committee: Rep. Virginia Foxx. Her view on education is that it’s ALL CTE (Career Tech Education). A kingpin of CTE is CBE (Competency Based Education).

Warriors, look at the title of HR 2859.

foxxed
Warriors, it’s not only Foxx we should be wary of, it’s also HR 2859’s main sponsor, Rep. Polis. He’s from Colorado. He’s also a senior member of the House Education and Workforce Committee. He’s also a huge ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) supporter, as well as serving on the subcommittee which works with the U.S. Dept. of Education to fully implement ESSA!

Polis’s Bill (HR 2859) will amend the HEA (Higher Education Act) as well as continue to experiment with our post-secondary students via CBE projects.

HR 2859 also opens ‘Pandora’s box’ of nebulous third party education partners.
U.S. Dept. of Ed will award any voluntary post-secondary school grants, waivers, and flexibility (aka: strings) for using your students as guinea pigs to see if  CBE really works. Of course, to see if it really works, you have to have CBE in everything before higher education. ESSA has that covered in spades. Especially where it states that all education must be post-secondary readiness aligned!

Polis’s 2014 Uninvited Move:

Back in 2014, Rep. Polis was part of the ‘team’ which sponsored the CBE bill (HR 3136), “Advancing Competency-Based Education Demonstration Project Act”. That Bill sailed through the entire House of Representatives by a vote of 414 to 0. Where did HR 3136 end up? In the Senate’s HELP Committee, under Sen. Lamar Alexander’s nose.

polis

With Uninvited Guests Comes Baggage:

Warriors, this more current Bill (HR 2859) is 39 pages long and slam full of CCSS Machine moves for higher education.

“Data” is embedded in 12 passages. Page 9 (uses data to ensure benchmarks of CBE are adhered to); Page 16 (data mined from students goes to the U.S. Dept. of Ed’s ‘research’ arm the IES (Institute of Education Sciences); Page 17 (how the IES will use the data) {Warriors, IES uses data in multiple ways, written into this Bill or not}; Pages 22 and 23 will show more student data uses; Page 25 shows there’s been a little thought as far as privacy, but note the caveat embedded; and, on Page 26 you’ll find it prohibits the ‘sale’ of student data (but no mention about freely sharing). The cost? A measly $5 million dollars, Warriors.

“Assessments” are embedded a mere 9 times. Page 6 lays out that all assessments will be workforce aligned; Page 10 shows how participating schools must use assessments to even be considered as eligible to participate in the voluntary project; Page 17 shows that there won’t be much time between the time a student enrolls in post-secondary education and their first assessment, as well as how the assessments are tied to ‘credentials’ earned; Page 23 shows assessments are part of the student’s successful outcome; and, Page 27 shows:

p27

Oh, before I forget, the built in sales pitch to all this CBE project and experimentation? It’ll lower costs for everyone (aka, taxpayers) by reducing how long a student is in school. Yep, you heard correctly. Hurry the students through post-secondary courses so they graduate faster so they can get a job sooner. It’s basically the ‘cart before the horse’ mentality.
(*Note: a New Zealand teacher has put a global spin on ‘cart before the horse’ in education. You really need to see how the shift there is illustrated. It’s what’s happening here in the US with bills like HR 2859)

modern-education_o_1290213

The problem with this logic is absurd. Do I really want to see my post-secondary student rush through medical school courses if they are going to be a doctor? No! Do I really want to trust a graduate of the rushed education with my life? Absolutely not! Do I really want to feel secure if my car needs repair, but the serviceman or woman cannot do it because it wasn’t included in their rushed course work?

Warriors, I’m not over simplifying this. We are seeing proof of this type of ill educated people NOW. Yet Congress wants MORE?! Using our students in post-secondary education as more guinea pigs is also very unwelcome. I guess the government doesn’t mind abusing adults. It’s done a bang up job on the minors.

bowl-of-stupid
Closing:

Warriors, in the coming days, I’ll be laying out more Congressional fodder (I mean legislation). When I searched ‘education data’ on the Congressional website I use, there were almost 800 hits. Of the almost 30 I’ve made notes on, the agenda is crystal clear. The uninvited guest in education is the government’s control.