Tag Archives: Every Child Achieves

Tech Thursday: High School Equivalency, CCSS/CTE Style

The GED's (General Educational Development) makeover isn't new news, but what HAS been happening with it since the news broke?
The GED’s (General Educational Development) makeover isn’t new news, but what HAS been happening with it since the news broke?

No, the GED’s makeover ISN’T the biggest news at the moment in the War Against the Core. However, as we’ve seen in this fight to save our educational system from the massive agenda which accompanies it, WHAT has been going on SINCE the GED Makeover??

If your state is anything like the one I live in (NC), plenty. If you refer to the picture at the beginning of this post, you’ll not one, but 3 testing services now offer the NC HSET (North Carolina High School Equivalency Test). Your diploma will be awarded to you by the NC Community College System. The NC Community College System has ‘sold out’ to the Common Core Standards/Career Tech Education.

Before we look at the 2015 update, step back with me to gain a better context of HOW CTE and Common Core are related:

From 2014:

How do I know the NC Community College System has aligned itself to the CCSS Machine? Please refer to my  former article exposing the alignment:
Here’s an excerpt from the “Despicable Moves” article, “all 58 of NC’s Community Colleges are in tune with the businesses in our state. The “master plan”? Kindergarten-12th grades, as well as community colleges (those 4 yr colleges will be added soon, or so it is hoped) to have classroom lessons in tune with the jobs in manufacturing , finances, logistics and healthcare.” (the entire article:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/10/09/tech-thursday-ncs-workforce-despicable-moves/ )

How do I know the rest of America’s Community Colleges are also aligned? Here’s an excerpt, “‘THE’ College Board involved with local community colleges. I hope this, because, it should continue to illuminate just how big of a grip on upper level education the group has. One part of the College Board’s organization is known as the Office of Community Colleges…. It is their job to work with local community colleges & help guide their decision making among other goals. The Board for the OCCI has many members. At least 2 are vocal about their support of & promotion the CC Standards in community colleges.  Kenneth Ender, Chair of the Advisory Board, “There is considerable work to be done to assure our K–12 curricula align with that of community college higher education. Our goal should be nothing less than assuring every high school graduate is prepared for postsecondary training and/or postsecondary education. The economy and workplace of the 21st century demands nothing less.” Nancy MacCallin, “If we do not address alignment of our K–12 and higher education systems, we will not be competitive in the global economy. Remediation needs of postsecondary students continue to worsen and need to be addressed in order to increase educational attainment. I hope to align assessment with the common core to provide an authentic assessment to ensure students move quickly through the remediation sequence and into a program that leads to a skilled workforce.”  (see the rest of the article: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/09/18/tech-thursday-common-core-community-college/)

 
Step Back, Circa 2012:

Before NC could become so aligned in all that’s related to the Common Core, there had to be some states to be the ‘guinea pigs’ for post-secondary Career Tech Education. From 2012 (or close to it), this is what was happening, “Since CTE is a federal level national initiative, there will be all kinds of funding, programs, etc. To get us to this point in education reform, research had to be conducted. From what I’ve been able to find, there were 5 states of OR, CO,KS, MN, MA, were awarded funding to participate in Advancing Career and Technical Education (CTE) in State and Local Career Pathways Systems, a two-year project managed by Jobs for the Future through a contract with OVAE(Office of Vocational Adult Education, which, by the way, has been renamed to OCTAE or the Office of Career, Technical Adult Education). Technical assistance will be provided to assist these states in building their capacity to integrate CTE Programs of Study (POS) into their broader career pathways system development efforts.” (Read the rest of the article: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/10/02/tech-thursday-ccss-career-pathways-and-workforce/)

 

Modern Day “Progress”:

Now that you’ve got a bit of context as to HOW the post-secondary CTE and the K-12 CCSS are related (if you need more evidence, I’ve got plenty, just let me know), let’s look at the current ‘progress’ via the High School Equivalency Test (aka the GED) from North Carolina. NC has 3 options, some states only have one or two options for measuring high school equivalency.

ETS’s HiSET: (Educational Testing Service), is a well known pro CCSS assessment maker, educational research entity and student data miner. According to their website for the HiSet, by offering you MORE options than every before for high school equivalency testing, you have greater opportunities! (see their encouragement letter to potential test takers,
http://hiset.ets.org/test_takers/letter/)

The ultimate goal in the equivalency test.
The ultimate goal in the equivalency test.

Other States using the HiSet are California(specific locations), Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Tennessee, and, Wyoming. (see: http://hiset.ets.org/requirements) The U.S. Territories are also in the CCSS/CTE ‘mix’. Click on the U.S. Territories tab to see their requirements.
To see the 2015 HiSet’s “Test at a Glance” pdf: 2015_taag

“GED”: Since GED is now a registered trademark owned by the American Council on Education (see this from their legal page, “The trademarks and logos used on our site identify our products and services and are owned by the GED Testing Service LLC or are used under license by GED Testing Service LLC. GED® and GED Testing Service® are registered trademarks of the American Council on Education (“ACE”)), much about the assessment has changed. For example, the main ‘selling point” as per their website can been seen below.

gedhype

The North Carolina Community College page shares that the “GED” is available in all 58 locations. Be sure to refer back to the fact that all 58 locations are tied to the CCSS Machine. (see above). Unlike the HiSet, “GED” is an anywhere, anytime assessment. See:
https://ged.com/how-it-works

Get all the alignment details: http://www.gedtestingservice.com/educators/ccr
Get all the alignment details: http://www.gedtestingservice.com/educators/ccr

The TASC (“Test Assessing Secondary Completion”):

This particular assessment is tied into MacGraw Hill’s CTB arm of assessments as well as the Data Recognition Corporation (DRC). See the links for much more information,
http://www.tasctest.com/about-ctb-for-educators.html
http://www.datarecognitioncorp.com/Pages/News%20Articles/news-3.aspx

Proof of the association can be seen in this screen shot:
tascbackers

TASC’s position on “Common Core” can be found in this excerpt, “TASC Test Item Types Reflect College and Career Readiness. Field tested and normed in 2013, the TASC test delivers the newest high school equivalency content available. It is aligned to Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE) National College and Career Standards for Adult Education, Next Generation Science Standards, and Social Studies national frameworks.

Wait, I didn’t see “Common Core State Standards” in that excerpt. You’re exactly right. Here’s HOW the CCR(College/Career Readiness) and the CCSS (Common Core State Standards) are basically the same thing, “In April 2013, after the TASC test development was initiated, the Office of Vocational and Adult Education (now named the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education) completed a project identifying a subset of the Common Core State Standards most appropriate for adult preparation for college and/or careers and issued its report, “College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education.”  You can access the rest of the document from which the above excerpt was taken when you click on the provided link. It’s an alignment timeline plan from McGraw Hill’s CTB Plan. TASC_Test Transition Plan_Revised_May.11.2015

The NC Memo from the US Dept. of Education which connects the high school equivalency tests to FASFA (post-secondary financial aid) forms can be found at
 http://www.nccommunitycolleges.edu/sites/default/files/numbered-memos/cc15-001.pdf

How does that memo tie to the CCSS Machine? The makeover of the FASFA for one, the U.S. Dept. of Education is another, the NC Community College is next.

Not shown in the memo or any of the above is the NC Chamber of Commerce’s involvement in education, but it’s there for sure. It has to be. Why? Simply put, the NC Workforce combines education and businesses.
In Your State:

As you know I use NC as an example for you to see where in your state these CCSS/CTE/CRR ties are. However, here are some articles I have previously published which tie the national organization for Community Colleges, as well as others,  to all this aligned agenda. Please,  use these, share these! The re-authorization of the HEA (Higher Education Act) will be upon us very, very soon! It is meant to be the second part of the re-authorization for education in America. It will directly follow up the re-authorized results of the K-12 education (Every Child Achieves Act/Student Success Act). Why? You cannot have complete education alignment that’s been stated as ‘cradle to career’ without our K-college system being distorted.

Every one of the links below is written from the national level of involvement, not just NC’s.

This ties so many ends of the CCSS Machine/Initiative together: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/04/25/sic-em-saturday-using-community-colleges-for-more-core/

This one features some of the current proposed legislative moves in Washington, D.C.:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/may-day-may-day-ccsscte-urgent-news/

This one shows how the high school assessments (GED, SAT, and, others) are being used against us:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/12/fom-post-secondary-ed-the-ccss-trojan/

My two part “Upskilling” articles pack a ‘one, two punch’:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/06/wybi-upskilling-america-part-1/
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/07/tech-thursday-upskilling-america-part-2/

The Council for Higher Education (CHEA) and the CCSS Machine:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/04/14/ftf-chea-cte-ccss-and-america/

 


A Parting Thought:

Anti CCSS/CTE Warriors, please note post-secondary education, no matter if it’s community colleges, for profit trade schools, on-line classes or certifications, public or private 4 year schools, every student who enters into them comes from a different educational choice. No education choice will be saved from the CCSS/CCR/CTE agenda as long as the illegally based initiative is allowed to survive. 

 

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Tech Thursday: Part Two of the HEA, STEM, the Workforce, and America

As the push for the re-authorization of the HEA heats up, more evidence has surfaced showing how post-secondary education is an ideal set-up for more than meets the eye.
As the push for the re-authorization of the HEA heats up, more evidence has surfaced showing how post-secondary education is an ideal set-up for more than meets the eye.

Last we were ‘together’, anti CCSS Warriors, I was sharing with you how the Higher Education Act (of 1965) is set for a re-authorization sometime very soon. We were able to connect the dots between the purposed alignment between the pre-K to 12th grade and post-secondary levels of education. In the last article, you saw how the current members in the U.S. House of Representatives have put together many bills related to re-vamping higher education. As I closed Tuesday’s article I promised you we’d look at the S1398 (Senate’s version of the “America Competes” Act), how we would tie it to not only STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and, Math), but to CTE (Career and Technical Education)as well. CTE is the ‘adult version’ of the pre-K through 12th grade CCSS. (I’ve shared with you repeatedly exactly how this is documented.)

Today’s article will prove to be a distinct eye-opener. So much so, I’m even shaking my head in just how interconnected the American reform is proving to be. Warriors, we’ve known the real agenda behind the education reform is the trained workforce. We’ve seen how the 2014 passage of the WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) has embedded CTE (written in via one of its other names, Career Pathways) and is woven into the legislation at least 21 times, per a high ranking U.S. Dept. of Labor spokesman.

In the event you haven’t had the opportunity to read Tuesday’s article, or you’d like both of these articles together:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/07/28/ftf-update-for-stem-workforce-and-the-hea-part-one/
Part One gave you vital information as to just HOW the WIOA and HEA are united via the CCSS Machine. A machine which includes those in public office as well in private business.

 

So just what is “America Competes”? It’s designed to involve America’s energy competitiveness in the global scheme, the ‘need’ for 21st Century technology (which includes energy efficiency, climate control, and other related activities here in America) AND education that’s aligned with Pre-K through 12th grade CCS Standards. As we know, CCSS can also mean ‘college and career ready standards’, ‘essential standards’, ‘career pathways’, ‘career clusters’, and on and on the names go.
(*Note: While I’ve not studied any of the ‘AC’ legislative bills in-depth, it does appear that the U.S. Dept. of Energy, along with the NSF {National Science Foundation; another federal level government entity}, get to influence the U.S. Dept. of Education in HOW to align courses, scholarships, etc. to fit all of the above into “America Competes”!  How will this be BEST accomplished? STEM and its related programs. This will include the STEaM, Common Core, Next Generation Science and MORE!)

All this “American competitiveness” is to be completed in the name of scientific research.

S1398, “America Competes”: 

As I shared on Tuesday, both the Democrats and the Republicans of the Senate like this bill. (The House has 2 versions, one which the sitting Republicans like, one the sitting Democrats like)
Here are some facts about S1398, you, the anti CCSS Warrior need the most:
a) the sponsor of the bill? Sen. Lamar Alexander (as is one of the chief people in rewriting the ESEA, and the HEA)
b) it was introduced in May 2015
c) it has many co-sponsors from both main political parties, every one of whom voted ‘yes’ to the ‘Every Child Achieves’ Act, also headed up by Sen. Alexander (Sen. Murray was also heading up the ECAA ‘charge’)
d) it is classified as an ‘energy’ bill, not an ‘education’ bill
e) while much shorter than its counter part bills in the House, it does involve ‘talent expansion’ programs, lots of taxpayer money, certain data NOT being made available to the public, “National Laboratories”, public-private partnerships being encouraged and incentive driven, removing duplicate authority in the “Science Enhancement Education” realm within the U.S. Dept. of Energy (question is, who gets to the be ONE authority?), protecting the PACE graduate program, giving ‘early career awards’, rewarding schools which drive up the attendance and graduation rates, and merit pay based peer reviews. (Does any of this sound anything remotely like what we’ve seen the primary and secondary educational reform? Of course it does! It’s MORE CCSS Machine rhetoric) While much shorter at the moment, remember the bill could grow by leaps and bounds when all is said and done.

To see the current form of S1398: https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/s1398/text

The U.S. Dept. of Energy’s Angle for Higher Education:
Before we get too far into just HOW aligned to CCSS/STEM/CTE the Dept. of Energy is, see this screen shot:

As we've discovered, where you see "Workforce" or "STEM", you know Common Core or Career and Technical Education is there as well.
As we’ve discovered, where you see “Workforce” or “STEM”, you know Common Core or Career and Technical Education is there as well.

It appears, from what I can find, that the U.S. Dept. of Energy is really throwing its educational influence towards the Workforce in the “Smart Grid” sector. One such example comes from the MS Gulf Coast Community College. See: Mississippi-Gulf-Coast-CC-Workforce-Development-Electric-Power-Sector
Now, if you’ve followed my blog for very long, you know how I’ve given you proof of how the community colleges across the nation have aligned themselves to the CCSS Machine. From the CCSS derived ‘Adult Standards’ to the CTE courses, hybrid classes (meaning on-line and in-person), and, beyond.

Below, is another example of the Workforce ‘chunks’ your student (or maybe even yourself) can find as an educational choice.

You'll find other energy career ladders, paths, clusters, and internships or apprentices at almost every community college, trade school, or high end university.
You’ll find other energy career ladders, paths, clusters, and internships or apprentices at almost every community college, trade school, or high end university.

To access the entire Energy/Workforce document,
US_Smart_Grid_Revolution_Smart_Grid_Workforce_Trends_Brochu
What you’ll find is more about the energy stance, the economy, or other items than you ever will about the academic nature of the student achieving a “Smart Grid” workforce degree. Why? Because, as we’ve seen time and time again, in all things related to the CCSS Machine, academics as we’ve known them, take a backseat to service. As you might notice, the above gives you a birds-eye view of how the U.S. Dept. of Energy has been able to influence the Workforce angle of education.

 

The White House Chimes In:

Back in 2010, the “America Competes” Act helped create “CoSTEM”. The purpose? According to the White House’s website, it was to co-ordinate the federal level activities in STEM education. (*Note: Does anyone recognize that ‘federal level activities’ violates the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution?!)

One of the co-chairs to CoSTEM is from the NSF (National Science Foundation). I’ve given you plenty of evidence how the NSF has been party to aligning our education, but a great reminder as to HOW is found below.
Members of federal level offices working together to see that STEM/CCS/CTE/Workforce survive and thrive?

  • Department of Agriculture
  • Department of Commerce
  • Department of Defense
  • Department of Education
  • Department of Energy
  • Department of Health and Human Services
  • Department of Interior
  • Department of Transportation
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration 

To access more about the above, see: https://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/ostp/nstc/committees/costem

 

The NSF and the CCSS Machine, ‘Bedded Partners’ for any Education Level:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/10/12/rmt-sunday-ccss-snake-oil-of-our-time/

 

Closing:

I truly hope you’ve been able to see my point in sharing what I have to complete the look at just how toxic the revamping of any educational choice is when put through the CCSS Machine’s cycle for America. If you’ve not, I’ll try to summarize below.
1) Any educational re-authorization currently on the table which impacts pre-K through grad school is seemingly under one man’s domain: Sen. Lamar Alexander.
2) The public-private partnership which makes up the CCSS Machine is impacting education from a birth to grave aspect. This will include not only our pre-K through grad school choices, but also our entire communities. Is this really what’s best for America?
3) That by ensuring every federal law possible that can influence an alignment to the Workforce agenda can happen, we see our human lives are less considered than the economy. How did I arrive at this point? Simple, look at the CCSS Machine agenda, it’s more about economy than personality.
4) Finally, by allowing a CCSS/CTE aligned Higher Education bill to pass, we see the cement ‘bridge’ completed from the earliest of American lives to the oldest completed.

As far as I’m concerned, it’s not a cement bridge, but, a cement block. The CCSS Machine wants you to envision a bridge to cross over when in reality it’s a cement block tied to your ankle to drag you down…and remember..it’s all in the name of ‘education’.

cementblock
My student is MORE than a block, or an apple..my student is a human!

Tech Thursday: The Tough, the Dedicated, the CCSS Warriors

We are living statues of liberty and freedom. Our torch? The U.S. Constitution
We are living statues of liberty and freedom. Our torch? The U.S. Constitution

Though you may be a weary anti CC Warrior today, you are STILL a warrior! We’ve miles to go, no matter what our day may hold in our Common Core aligned state of being. Yes, we’ve had some defeats, we’ve also had VICTORIES! Today’s post is dedicated to help you stand firm, stand strong, and stand for our children.

Interspersed between ‘need to know’ news and encouragement, will be JPEGS you can use to text, email, or fax to your Congress members, if you like OR share them on your other anti CCSS social media outlets.

Remember, while HR5, Student Success Act, has been passed—it has only cleared the House of Representatives. It still has a long way to go. While we wait to see what the fate of S1177 will be, we know that, like HR5’s passage, IF Every Child Achieves (S1177) is passed. It will have only passed the Senate. It will have a long way to go.

Both the HR5 AND the HEA re-authorizations are being fast tracked!
Both the HR5 AND the HEA re-authorizations are being fast tracked!

Our strategy of making a lot of noise in a short amount of time is working! That’s a victory. Consider that S1177 was supposed to be under everyone’s radar. We foiled that (a victory, warriors)! The bill was also supposed to be a ‘sure thing’ and voted on by the this time last week. Guess what? We foiled that, too! That victory allowed us a fabulous 4 day back-to-back daily assault. The daily assault has been not only a blessing, but a brilliant tool. None of us could have pulled this effort off if it had not been for Patriot Journal Network. I pause to say a deep ‘thank you’ to the team at PJNet.

Imagine, those who make the assessments, That the child you see is YOURS.
Imagine, those who make the assessments, That the child you see is YOURS.

The valuable opt-opt amendment sponsored by Sen. Lee of Utah was defeated, while the more restrictive version by Sen. Isaken of Georgia was passed and will be inserted into Every Child Achieves. If you’re concerned about opting out of high stakes assessments, you now know who’s amendment to be researching.

Also passed was Sen. Tester’s (MT) amendment concerning shifting from assessments like PARCC and SBAC, and go to grade span assessments BUT keep the SBAC/PARCC policies and procedures! If assessments cause your anti CCSS warriors heart to heat up, turn that heat to Congress!!

Sen. Hatch’s (UT) Student Data Privacy Committee was given permission. If you’re concerned about student data and its privacy, you need to know, several pro CCSS groups helped create the amendment Mr. Hatch sponsored. He named them on 7/13/15 during the Senate’s daily business. You can access video archive footage on CSpan2. http://www.c-span.org/networks/?channel=c-span-2 (cable or satellite users) or http://www.senate.gov/floor/ (antenna users)

Of the many Career Cluster maps, here's the U.S. Dept. of Ed's
Of the many Career Cluster maps, here’s the U.S. Dept. of Ed’s

If you’re a CCSS Warrior concerned with the Career Tracks, Career Clusters, Career Pathways, or the Career and Technical Education portion of the CCSS Machine, you need to know that a purposed intent to leave Workforce based language in BOTH HR5 and S1177 was taken. One Senator extremely on this education/workforce to save children’s lives bandwagon, is Sen. Sanders (as in Bernie). During his speech on the afternoon of the 15th, he sounded exactly like, and his plan mimicked, one I’d researched and seen before. In fact, I’ve published an article with this very video in it months ago. While, I feel that article may be helpful, I’m not linking it today, as I know our time for discussion, can happen anytime. Our time to influence our Congress, is of the utmost importance NOW.

Amendments that haven’t been voted on (as of the writing of this article):
Early PreK Learning (Sen. Murray) This bill is a horrible overreach into not only our children’s lives with CCSS alignment, but the dreaded ‘learn to earn’ phrase has been used in several instances to describe this amendment. Along with this bill is the mindset that college begins at birth!

This is carried out via the Strong Start for America’s Children (this one’s been sitting dormant for about 2 years). This involved the birth through 3 year olds. (remember, before the storm of activity in D.C., I published an article about the “Pint Sized” Common Core. This particular bill would infringe your 4th amendment rights, as well as the usual laws CCSS breaks. Included are home visits (currently going on in some states). If this is an anti CCSS concern, you know where to make some noise!

My mother's heart goes out to all the young mothers who will not know that the earliest years are not designed for these 4 skill areas.
My mother’s heart goes out to all the young mothers who will not know that the earliest years are not designed for these 4 skill areas.

While not a complete list, you get the idea. Know that all the other areas of education NOT listed above will be slammed with the CCSS Machine filled HR5/S1177. Know that these 2 bills are only 2 pieces of a very big puzzle that will grind away from birth to post graduate schools. The next set of bills connected to the re-writing of ESEA, are the HEA (Higher Education Act) and the CPA (College Promise Act).

FIGHT ON, my fellow warriors against the Core!