Tag Archives: NC Community Colleges

Affording CCSS Higher Ed Reform

For this Weekend News article, I want to help shine the light on the CCSS Machine in higher education..specifically in the name of college/post-secondary affordability. Who is involved? How does this connect to the CCSS Machine?

Above, you see a screen shot of the NC Senate Bill 873. Its short title is the ‘Access to Affordable College Ed Act’. Since you, my fellow  anti CCSS Warriors may NOT live in NC, what will your State have in the works for higher education reform where saving money is a selling point?

If you have heard any of my more recent interviews, you may recall I have shared that one of the ways in which we, the citizens of the USA, will be taken in by the CCSS Machine’s higher education grasp is through the affordable cost of post-secondary education. Look closely at the above screen shot and you will see the easily identifiable Common Core Machine ties. But trust me, there are MANY more not in black and white print.

However, before we get to a State level look, let’s review what the federal level of the CCSS Machine’s education overreach in the name of savings for post-secondary education.

The Feds in Post-Secondary Education:

In Feb. 2016, I shared with you the intent Dr. John King (U.S. Dept. of Ed’s Secretary) and the OPE (Office of Post-Secondary Education) in regards to CCSS/CTE/CCR (Common Core State Standards/Career Tech Education/College and Career Readiness). Here is a quote,
‘Once you are in the OPE website pages, you can find this declaration OPE works to strengthen the capacity of colleges and universities to promote reform, innovation and improvement in post-secondary education, promote and expand access to post-secondary education and increase college completion rates for America’s students, and broaden global competencies that drive the economic success and competitiveness of our Nation.” ‘

To see the rest of the article and how FASFA (the paperwork for federal student aid to go to post-secondary education) plays into all the education reform:

Also in Feb. 2016, I dug into the 2017 Fed Ed Budget Requests and found how college and other post-secondary education is to seem more affordable. Early College programs; where funding for HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) and MSIs (Minority Serving Institutions) were to be impacted as well.

Right slam in the midst of all this is the connection to the SREB (Southern Regional Education Board). How? In the name of ‘research’! If you go back and look at the NC legislation in the works, see how SREB’s research is being relied upon as well as written into the Bill.
(*Note: If you have followed my blog long, you know how deep into the pockets of the CCSS Machine, SREB is. More about SREB will be below.)

In the article I also gave you how the funding will impact TRIO programs, Job Development Grants, and more. The article also shows you how each one of these ties back to the ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act), WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act), as well as HEA (Higher Education Act). 
See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/02/13/big-bucks-for-post-secondary-ed/

SREB, NC, and the Nation:

Past research has connected SREB to the CCSS Machine’s intent to use community colleges (post-secondary education) as a breeding grounds for CTE (Career Tech Education, the adult portion of CCSS) and more educational alignment to workforce based education. See below for what CCSS Machine organizations fund SREB:

SREBfund To find out more about how and what SREB is doing to education and those who are in education, as well as find out about the other regionally based education boards and their involvement, see: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/04/25/sic-em-saturday-using-community-colleges-for-more-core/

So, the burning question is, why is NC using a known CCSS Machine organization like SREB to create legislation? Take a look at this 2014 screen shot. I believe we can glean from it WHY NC relies on CCSS Machine backed research:

Others NOT included in the screen shot include Dr. June Atkinson (head of the NC Dept. of Public Instruction, as well as the President of the CCSSO, Council of Chief State School Officers, which own half the copyright to CC Standards!) and Dr. Scott Ralls, the (at that time) head of NC Community Colleges. Ralls has moved on to become President of a Community College in VA since this report.

Now, I know some of my NC anti CCSS Warriors may be shocked to see some of the names they see. My concern is how many of these people have we heard publicly state they were/are against CCSS, but are participating in embedding it in various ways into the State Laws? Do they KNOW the connections already and just turn a blind eye, or has the truth been kept from them?!

For those of you NOT in NC, look at your regional boards to see who is in state government AND serves on these types of boards!

The Clearinghouse Featured in the NC Legislation:

If you refer back to the top of the article and see the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, you may not know that this Center is ALSO a CCSS Machine member, but it is!! Furthermore, it is being used as MORE research and evidence to create legislation!

From the Clearinghouse’s ‘About Us’ portion of their website you can learn they have been data collecting/sharing since 1993, that they adhere to FERPA (remember it got overhauled to not be as protective as it once was?), and how they abide by the HEA (Higher Education Act). See:

For an even more in-depth look at the Student Clearinghouse, see this article by Douglas Shapiro (Research Exec for the Student Clearinghouse)

The ties to the CCSS Machine the Clearinghouse has:

See below for what CCSS Machine member is helping fund the Clearinghouse:

To access the Gates Foundation page: http://www.gatesfoundation.org/How-We-Work/Quick-Links/Grants-Database#q/k=National%20Student%20Clearinghouse

If you would like to see the Clearinghouse’s 2015 Data ReportClearinghouse2015data
(*Note that the Report is about the Clearinghouse from another post-secondary group, IHEP, Institute for Higher Education Policy. As of this writing, I will look into IHEP in the future.)

So, How Does All of the Above Impact NC Legislation?

1) It further embeds the CCSS Machine, the federally led, privately funded education overreach into the State. Remember, since ALL the States are impacted by the U.S. Dept. of Education, WIOA, ESSA, and HEA, there is NO reason to think NC stands alone in this.

2) Another short answer is it is embedding education reform in the name of student debt reduction. Who will bear the brunt of the debt load? The taxpayers! Here in NC, a recent state-wide Bond was passed in the name of educational updates that will burden our taxpayers for at least 2 generations! (If you like, you can search my blog for the ‘NC Connect’ and learn how the CCSS Machine is involved.)

3) By overhauling how colleges, universities, and all other post-secondary educational institutions are to be held accountable and accredited, you will see a continued chipping away at local control and MORE federal overreach increase. (I have written about this issue as well and how the CCSS Machine is behind it. If you would like that research, let me know.)

4) In the body of the NC SB873 (Access to Affordable College Ed Act), you will see how by taking 4 year state-led colleges and turning them into community colleges it plays right into the hands of the SREB intent/CCSS Machine agenda to use community colleges as not so much educational facilities, but worker prep facilities.
See the NC Legislative Bill:

A Couple of Loose Ends Worth Noting:

In the NC Legislative Bill screen shot, you may notice I underlined the name of David Kirp.
Who is he? ‘Senior Fellow in Residence, is the James D. Marver Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California at Berkeley.’

I found this excerpt about him on the Learning Policy Institute’s website (that is where the Sr. Fellowship comes in). The Learning Policy Institute is funded by some pretty big CCSS Machine members (Ford Foundation, the Hewlett Foundation, etc.). The President and CEO of the Learning Policy Institute is none other than  Linda Darling-Hammond (a notoriously known CCSS Machine disciple)!
To access the Learning Policy Institute’s website: https://learningpolicyinstitute.org/people/

AIR was also underlined in the screenshot. American Institutes  of Research are also notoriously tied to the CCSS Machine. Many anti CCSS Warriors have shared the ties, the deceptive moves for data mining carried out in the name of ‘research’. One anti CCSS Warrior in particular has mountains of documented evidence on AIR. Her name is Deb Herbage (FL).  She has recently begun her own blog, DezignzbyDeb (it is on WordPress, like mine). Contact her for any thing AIR related.


As twisted as the CCSS paved road is in each of our States, I trust you can see why legislation, either State created or federally, is being used to continue the vicious cycle of grinding down our nation education-wise.
Please, look into your State’s governing bodies.
NC residents: PLEASE contact the leaders and DEMAND accountability while you share the truth.
Warriors, many of these leaders are seeking to be re-elected. Will we continue to put them in office?



Winter 2016: A Look Ahead, NC and the USA

Bond, bad bond

I call this picture above, “Bond, bad bond”. Why? As a dedicated education policy and law researcher who has uncovered many ties to Common Core and its related entities, I can smell a foul stench when I see something like this. The great news is, I am NOT alone! I will go back to the Bond later in this article, but first, these important pieces of the ‘picture’ NOT seen above:

A) With the recent news of the ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) and its purposed exclusion of the phrase “Common Core State Standards, or, CCSS”, we have all been told CCSS is dead, is no longer an issue.
Ha, ha, I am not laughing. Nor are many of the other anti CCSS Warriors I know. Why? We have discovered the ESSA replaced CCSS with the following (interchangeable phrases):

1) ‘College and career readiness’, ‘college and career readiness standards’ (in some instances ‘career pathways’ and ‘career technical education’  were also variations)
2) ‘Challenging state academic standards’
3) ‘Workforce’ (WIOA, Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) which was usually located in the direct vicinity of ‘education’.

If you missed my articles exposing these phrases and their locations in the ESSA, please see: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/?s=ESSA

B) So what does the ESSA have to do with ‘Bond, bad bond’?

In my opinion, it will have a  great impact. However, knowing that the workforce based education movement involves not only education, but labor and commerce, we need to know what those projects will be as well. And since we, across America, have seen how non-transparent a lot of the projects are, we must be ever watchful!

C) So, if you don’t live in NC, what can you glean from this type of bond activity?
1) As always, use it as an example of what is going on in your state!
Every state has departments for education, labor, commerce. Every state has bonds placed on their ballots.
2) In this day and age if one side says the bonds are imperative for education, find out how and WHY!
3) We can NO LONGER assume the supportive side in ANYTHING related to education is all that we are being told it is. NOR, can we always assume the non-supportive side in ANYTHING related to education is being up front.
4) With 2016 being SUCH an important election year, we CANNOT let any sneaky move by the CCSS Machine pass. Their omnibus bonds, bills, etc. CANNOT live on! Why? Not only does it grease the Machine’s gears, it lassos our future generations into MASSIVE debt.


Back to Bond, Part One:

Returning to the graphic you see and the statement I have about NC higher education being sold out, here is what I am referring to.
“Here’s the basic idea about state policies in education, at least in the CBP(Competency Based Pathway) Way:
a) ‘good’ policy moves include using students outcome to drive precedents.
b) ‘guarding’ those high quality academic standards
c) ‘create’ a community wide education effort (ie: must include ALL ‘stakeholders’)
d) offer incentives to help force certain outcomes and remove any rules or regulations not encouraging ‘more ways to learn/earn’.” (source: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/08/06/tech-thursday-career-pathways-meet-competency-based-pathways/) In  this August 2015 article, you can not only see NC’s progress in CBP but how it encompasses CTE (Career Tech Education)! You can find the links and other resources for what to look for in your state, too!

The Connections:

So, what has the supportive side for this mega bond for NC stated? The Bond’s real name is Connect NC. According to the Raleigh News and Observer, the entire Bond will be for infrastructure projects. Here is an excerpt,
“The $2 billion worth of projects expected to be paid with bond dollars include university and community college infrastructure, parks and North Carolina Zoo improvements and N.C. National Guard and agricultural projects. On its website, NC Against the Bond points out that the funding wouldn’t pay for transportation projects or K-12 education programs.” (see the rest of the article: http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/politics-columns-blogs/under-the-dome/article53288900.html)

I would like to pause to remind you, my fellow anti CCSS Warriors, that this media source is very CCSS Machine friendly, and has slanted many articles concerning education in the past.

Another media source, from a smaller county in NC (Alamance) had this to report in support of Connect NC: “If voters do approve, Alamance Community College would get $6,100,339 out of $350 million earmarked for state community colleges. President Algie Gatewood said ACC’s Board of Trustees would need to talk about how best to spend the money, but much of it would probably go to nursing and other medical training programs.”, Wait, there is more you need to read! “BOND SUPPORTERS, and there are many, say the focus is on funding education in growing areas of employment like the medical professions, engineering and the sciences.“This allows the community college to train more nurses, medical assistants and nurses’ aides,” said Dan Ingle, ACC trustee and chair of the Alamance County Board of Commissioners. (see the rest of the article: http://www.thetimesnews.com/article/20160109/news/160109142)

I would like to point out that the ACC President is stumping this Bond. It is in the article.

Back to the Bond, Part Two:

Now, as far as the Connect NC Bond, it is part of a movement. It has the Governor’s blessing. If you missed my Weekend News article, it focused on the NC State Board of Education resolving to align education NOT to true academics, but to career tech education/college and career readiness/workforce related education for BUSINESSES and the ECONOMY in 100 % support of the Governor’s plans!(See:https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/01/08/weekend-news-tangled-webs-of-educratic-moves/)

When you take into consideration the Resolution in support of the gubernatorial office to the alignment to all things CCSS/CTE/CCR related it isn’t hard to see where the statement made in support of Connect NC is too far removed. Here is an excerpt, “The $2 billion bond will connect North Carolina to the 21st century through statewide investments in education, parks, safety, recreation, and water and sewer infrastructure.”

In the screen shot below, you can see the Connect NC projects are already in the works to some degree. In this PDF you can see Alamance County’s project specifically states ‘new construction, repairs, renovations’
With as crafty as the CCSS Machine is, you can see the education updates will most likely fall in the renovations portion of the funding. Very non- transparent, don’t  you think?! Get the pdf:


Oh, if you are wondering, there is NC State legislation for the Bond. See:

It is here in the language of the law you can find the loophole Alamance County appears to be taking advantage of with its plans to use the bulk of its Connect NC Bond money for educational courses. “It is the intent of the General Assembly by this act to provide, subject to a vote of the qualified voters of the State, for the issuance of two billion dollars ($2,000,000,000) general obligation bonds of the State for the purpose of providing funds, with any other available funds, to update the State’s public facilities for the 21st century, including, without limitation, construction, repair, renovation, and furnishing of new facilities in order to (i) enhance other economic development efforts of the State and (ii) attract new and assist existing industry, business, technology, and tourism for the benefit of the State and its citizenry.” (NOTE: you can access the rest of the ratified law by clicking on the embedded link to it from the website above.)

Again, if you don’t live in NC, how can you find similar activity in your state? Use the upcoming primaries to see what bonds, taxes, etc. are being added which are connected to education in ANY way. Then, see what connecting legislation (and/or policy) is being used as the justification!

More Connections:

Since STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) are part of CCSS, CCR, and CTE; as well as being so specifically pointed to in the Bond and the Law providing for it, we need to see where NC has STEM (already in the works, too).

From the NC level:

https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/12/02/wybi-wednesday-rttt-stem-ed-waivers-and-more/ (This ties our Race to the Top funding to STEM as well as CCSS)
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/11/09/monday-musings-global-readiness-and-ccss/ (Since Global economy and global competency were including in the NC SBE Resolution, this article will be important)
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/01/07/the-great-education-experiment/ (This shows not only NC in the thick of STEM, but Workforce alignment to CCSS/CTE, too)From the federal level and to where to watch for in 2016:
2) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/17/wybi-nc-businesses-and-common-core/
3) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/03/25/wybi-job-development-grants-and-ccss/Again, if I am not an NC resident, why should I read these?
Since all 50 states have state governments, are aligned to the CCSS Machine via federal funding in some fashion, have jobs and careers where those businesses are forming the educational plans, educational institutions which must carry out the P3 (public private partnerships), we can use each others PRO CCSS movements to see where in the other states similar activity may be.

Career Clusters, Part of the Whole Mess: 

Notice that Alamance County Community College wants to use the bulk of its money for updating courses. (see above) How does that factor into the CCSS Machine and Connect NC Bond? The short answer is they are part of the Career Technical Education arm of CCSS.These clusters usually begin in the K-12 area of education, but are also in post-secondary education. My article from 2015 about the Clusters and data mining may be of help in your state as well. Linda Darling-Hammond is connected. See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/01/20/ftf-tuesday-career-readiness-and-data/
Impacting all 50 states is the U. S. Dept. of Ed’s Career Clusters road map for education, see: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/03/12/tech-thursday-difference-between-careers/
How special needs students and those deemed as ‘alternative’ will be sucked in: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/12/03/tech-thursday-career-techcommon-core-and-alternative-education/

And the biggest way in which not only NC is tied to this, but your state as well: Perkins Funding! See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/11/20/tech-thursday-perkins-gets-the-common-core-squeeze/


If you want to find out more about NC Against the Bond, you can find them on Facebook. Here is their link: https://www.facebook.com/AgainstTheBond/

If you wish to sign the petition against the Bond and pledge your vote to a ‘no’ on March 15, 2016, visit: http://againstthebond.com/petition/
(I will happily share that I am among those who are saying “No!”)

As far as a federal level of education bonds or legislation which would impact infrastructure in education’s name, that will be another article for another day.

Monday Musings: “Global Readiness” and CCSS

NC has its first "Global Ready" School. Is your state next?!
NC has its first “Global Ready” School. Is your state next?!

Anti CCSS Warriors, another work week is upon us. Another week to fight against the agenda behind the CCSS Initiative. We know part of the agenda is NOT a true academic education, but a workforce based, globally minded, and career ready citizen who will be an economic ‘positive’. I’ve written much on the topic. Our students, regardless of the their age are being described as ‘human capital’, ‘talent supply’, and other disgusting phrases. We can now add the dishonorable ‘globally ready’ to this list, at least in NC. But are there other states already willing to sell out their schools? You bet!

NC, First is ‘Globalness’?

Where can you find out more? http://www.ncpublicschools.org/globaled/
Where can you find out more?

I invite you to enlarge the above screen shot. This is no joke for NC, but it’s a foolish move for the state, nonetheless. Why? Because instead of the state receiving LESS CCSS, it is continuing to LOCK CCSS into the schools!!
Here’s a quote from the page above, “In September 2011, the North Carolina State Board of Education (SBE) formed a Task Force on Global Education to assess the state’s effort to produce “globally competitive” graduates ready to live, work, and contribute in an interconnected world.” The Task Force found 6 major goals and committed to 5 of them. What are they? I’m so glad you asked! Below you’ll find the 6 goals in plain language, not the tricky double speak so often used in CCSS supportive dribble.

1) prepare students for global readiness
2) use LEAs (Local Educational Agencies) to co-ordinate and align for global readiness
3) prepare and align teachers for global readiness
4) stress global language and culture
5)  involve as many P3 (public private partnerships) to get in the ‘global push’ as possible
6) hone a sustainable, global competitive edge in communities

The 5 commitments? Again, in plain language, not pro CCSS rhetoric!
1) embedded global themes, more PBLs (problem or project based learning), and groom teachers for more globalness, not less
2) partner with HLIs (Higher Learning Institutions) for more to increase the supply of global ready teachers
3) transform schools into ‘new schools’ with the help of non-education related entities
4) expand the ‘global ready’ push to more NC school districts
5) work directly with the NC Dept. of Commerce and other external partners

To see the pro CCSS language as the State Board of Education’s Task Force stated the 6 goals and 5 commitments: exec-summary

Okay, that’s just the summary above, but what was in the 2013 Full Report?? Read on, anti CCSS Warriors, but have a ‘barf bag’ close by, you’ll probably feel your stomach begin to revolt! Oh, and I’m leaving it in their words this time. Following each quote, I’ll provide you with a plain speak articles of HOW each of these are locking in MORE CCSS, CTE, CP, STEM, and more! {*Note: CCSS is short for Common Core State Standards; CTE is short for Career Tech Education; CP is short for Career Pathways; and STEM is short for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math}

College- and Career-Ready Standards. Like 45 other states, North Carolina is implementing the internationally-benchmarked Common Core State Standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts. In addition, unlike elsewhere, the state has also developed the new NC Essential Standards that underpins the newly developed North Carolina Standard Course of Study for all content areas.
My recent article where you can see how sold out to CCR (college/career readiness NC is and just which groups and schools are involved):

“Teacher and Principal Evaluation. Beginning in 2008, North Carolina implemented new, statewide teacher and principal evaluation instruments..”
See how principals are being encouraged to align not only traditional students to CCSS, but encompass the special needs students as well!:

“Longitudinal Data System. To enable greater levels of data-driven decision-making, the state has implemented a Common Education Data Analysis and Reporting System (CEDARS), which links students and staff and allows data to be analyzed across sources, such as financial systems, teacher licensure, student information, and testing.”
To see how well NC has covered its backside on mining student data and for how long it will go on in our student’s lives. I must warn you, other states are doing this as well!:

“District and School Transformation. 118 low-performing schools and 12 school districts are receiving intensive and ongoing support to dramatically increase educator effectiveness and student achievement.”
School district alignment often involves those who are employed therein. See how the CCSS Machine has its grasp on some of the nation wide groups overseeing or helping school districts!:

“Early College High Schools. The state has 69 early college high schools in operation on community college and university campuses..”
Dual enrollment combines the last part of high school with that of the first year of college. In NC, all 58 community colleges are CCSS/CTE aligned. Most of the major universities are also helping grease the wheels of the CCSS Machine.:

NC STEM Learning Network. The NC STEM Learning Network guides implementation of our state’s coordinated STEM Strategy to increase student achievement in STEM…”
Learn about the STEM Affinity Network that’s in full speed across America!:

North Carolina Virtual Public School (NCVPS).  NCVPS offers over 100 courses to students across the state, including Advanced Placement (AP), World Languages, Occupational Course of Study (OCS), and credit recovery courses.”
What the NC Dept of Public Instruction doesn’t reveal is that NCVPS pulls in homeschoolers and other educational choices!:

“Instructional Improvement System (‘Homebase’). The state is developing this online system to help educators manage student work and assessments, classroom activities, and their personal professional growth.”
What the NC Dept of Public Instruction prefers you DON’T know about “Homebase”!:

“Early Literacy Interventions. The state is developing a comprehensive, diagnostic assessment for K- 3 students.”
To see the NC ‘homegrown’ birth to 5 year literacy, pro CCSS alignment:

If you’d like the full 2013 report this juggernauts come from: final-report

Here’s a screen shot of the 2015-16 “NC Global School Ready Rubric”:
To get the entire rubric: ncglobalrub
To get the school district ‘global ready’ rubric: NCdistrictrub
{*Note: the partnerships used in creating this rubrics. Asia Society is among them. To learn where the Asia Society is housed and how it connects to the CCSS Machine, as well as the CCSS aligned teacher standards see:



So, I’ve shown you what’s up in NC, but what about the other states? Look for phrases like ‘globally connected’, ‘global network’, ‘future ready’, and similar. If you want more information on how many states are already connected to the GEN (Global Education Network): https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/09/17/tech-thursday-global-day-for-education/
If you’d like to learn about the Global Competency Task Force:

With moves like these in our states, we know LOCKING in more CCSS/CCR/CTE is a reality, not a questioned possibility. If our leaders are saying ‘no’ to CCSS, but ‘yes’ to ANY of the above, we must hold them accountable!

CCSS Follow Up System: More than Money Will Follow Your Students

While it's yet to be determined if money follows your students, CCSS certainly is already following your students.
While it’s yet to be determined if money follows your students, CCSS certainly is already following your students.

In fighting the War Against the Core, we’ve all met those warriors who are great at sending tips to areas of the “Common Core” overreach into our lives. From an educational standpoint, we’ve seen the CCSS Machine usurp our schools; from a privacy standpoint, we seen the CCSS Machine ruin it. The damage is far from new NOR is it over.

Here in NC, the “Common Follow Up System” has been in place since 1992! How is this part of the agenda that comes with “Common Core”? Keep reading, my followers and anti CCSS Warriors..

What is a “CFS”?

The purpose of a “Common Follow Up System” is: “The purpose of the Common Follow-up System (CFS) is to provide information on the educational and employment outcomes of participants in publicly supported educational, employment and training programs for use in planning, policy-making, program evaluation, resource allocation and career planning.”

Do you see the CCSS/CTE footprints? I do. If you don’t, look at the emphasized words. Publicly supported education means schools or programs connected to them. That’s the CCSS portion. The employment and training is the Career Technical Education (CTE). The two are one in the same in that the CTE portion of the Common Core begins well before high school graduation.

Let’s dig deeper, shall we? The CFS (Common Follow Up System) was designed to be a unified effort to collect massive amounts of data. The data was supposedly to help all the agencies involved to plan better as well as to have better resource management capabilities. Yes, that’s right. Those are the supposed reasons. However, consider the original agencies involved:
University of North Carolina, General Administration (UNC)
  North Carolina Community College System (NCCCS)
 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (DPI), Workforce Development Education
 Employment Security Commission (ESC) of North Carolina 
  Division of Employment and Training (DET)
  North Carolina Department of Human Resources, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVR)
 North Carolina Department of Labor (DOL)

Overseeing this CFS? Is the North Carolina State Occupational Information Coordinating Committee (NCSOICC).

In the earliest years of the CFS, a longitudinal data base system was formed. The system tracked each person’s progression through the state’s workforce; to study their paths of progress to see what education or other factors were involved. In 1995, the NC General Assembly helped the data collection efforts. (See Chapter 96 of the NC General Statutes). Since 1996, interest in all this data collection has increased quite a bit. Here’s an excerpt,Several groups turned to the CFS as a valuable source of quality outcome information for education, employment and training programs. The increased interest was due to initiatives at both the state and national levels regarding the collection, calculation and reporting of performance information throughout the education, employment and training system. These initiatives included the development of reports for the Commission on Workforce Development(and others).

My Files:

Now, as I’ve uncovered in the past, the CCSS Machine grinds on via the Career Pathways, Career Clusters, the Career Technical Education. I’ve shown you how each is a ‘marriage’ of education and workforce. So have others who’ve been fighting this War for our students. We’ve shown how the dots connect FROM education TO the Workforce AS WELL AS how legislation (state and federal) have PROTECTED this union. “The Workforce Quality Data Initiative” is a program I’ve reported on that has the main purpose of data mining our post secondary students from the labor aspect of their lives. Embedded in this program is language which plainly states it will join the data mining efforts from the Student Longitudinal Data System from the education aspect of the K-12 students. (see my article: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/10/23/tech-thursday-blast-from-our-workforce-past/) You’ll find that back in June 2015 I shared this article with you: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/07/rmt-halting-a-ccsscte-aligned-workforce/

Back to the CFS:

In 2012, the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction was awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Education to build a State Longitudinal Data System (SLDS). While NCDPI is the lead on the SLDS grant, the project is a collaborative effort of several entities including: the NCDPI, the North Carolina Community College System (NCCCS), the University of North Carolina General Administration (UNC GA), the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (NCICU), and the North Carolina Department of Commerce (NCDOC).”  This direct quote is from the May 2015 Report I’ve been sharing excerpts from thus far. It’s the tip my fellow warrior shared.

Added to the grant given by the U.S. Dept. of Ed, the NC General Assembly boosted the data mining once again. State law 2012-131 gave the NC Dept. of Commerce the green light to ramp up data collection AND storage projects. See this, “As part of its efforts to improve the CFS, the Department of Commerce applied for a competitive grant with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration through their Workforce Data Quality Initiative (WDQI). The Department received notification in June of 2013 that North Carolina had been awarded a WDQI grant. The grant covers a three year period ending in June 2016. Grant funds are being utilized to further strengthen and enhance the CFS.”

*Note: In my June 2015 “Halting CCSS/CTE Aligned Workforce” I shared that NC had been awarded big bucks. Now I know where those big bucks specifically went. Thus, the last remaining dots of the agenda are exposed. Boom!

One of the programs the WQDI money gave NC is known as the “NC Tower”. The “Tower” stands for “Tool for Online Workforce and Education Reporting”.  Every one of the 16 University of North Carolina’s campuses, the 58 statewide Community Colleges has your post-secondary students data (and lots of it)! To see just which groups GET that data, see page 7 of the report. Page 8 of the report will tell you how the NGA (National Governors Association) is NOW involved. Here’s a small ‘tip’ for you to consider, “In July 2014, North Carolina submitted an application to the National Governor’s Association (NGA) Policy Academy for Aligning the Education and Training Pipeline to the Needs of the Economy. The state received notification in August 2014 that its application was successful. This initiative is a collaboration of the Office of the Governor, the Department of Commerce, the North Carolina Community College System, the Department of Public Instruction and the NCWorks Commission. This effort will assist the state in aligning its education and workforce resources, strengthening its services to citizens and businesses, connecting talent to jobs and growing North Carolina’s economy.”
Also involved is a group identified in the report as “Lead Staff”. “Lead” stands for “Labor and Economic Analysis Division”. See below for just how many NC students have been data mined since the CFS’s inception.


Page 13 of the Report shows how many NC organizations are NOW part of the CFS. To access the entire report:
CFS-Operational Report-May 2015
To access the NC Tower, so you can see just how much of the NC grant money from the WQDI  was used, visit:
To see a related article about the data mining in NC concerning the NC General Assembly, see my fellow warrior, Lady Liberty 1885’s article: http://ladyliberty1885.com/2015/04/20/parents-are-you-watching-data-collection-expansion-bills-hb401-and-hb767/
To see what the ‘education-to-work’ plans for those who are considered ‘at risk’ looks like, how the money will flow, the data mined, and more, see: Made in Durham PRINT 11 13 12-FINAL_0 (*Note: the CTE, Career Technical Education, shows up on page 16. Durham County, NC is also where SAS, IBM, and others like them in the CCSS Machine call home office. SAS, IBM, and the others are all in the same business: computers and data. Why did I include this report? Look at the amount of ‘national research’ involved for education/workforce.


The title of today’s “Tech Thursday” article is about money following our students. This is in reference not only to the current proposals of legislation about federal and state dollars being used as student savings accounts which would follow our students from education to workforce, it’s also in reference to the vast amounts of money which have already created a system that tracks our students. The difference is what may be yet to come will most definitely continue the CCSS Machine’s agenda via more initiatives to align, while what has happened, paved the way for the CCSS Machine’s agenda to succeed so far.

So, does your state have a CFS? If they have a state wide Dept of Commerce, have received federal grants for data, education, and/or workforce, have applied to the NGA for grants, AND had a cooperative state level Congress, it’s more than likely already well entrenched.
Here’s a report from 2013 out of Utah titled “Report of Select State Practices for Aligning Educational Supply with Occupational Demand”asa_2013-05-23_alignment_report (page 7 shows all the states contacted as resources)
One of the nationally based initiatives cited in the 2013 Utah document is the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s “Leaders and Laggards”. See their website: http://www.uschamberfoundation.org/reportcard/

*Note, my coverage of the “Leaders/Laggards” is in the Jan. 2015 article: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/01/15/tech-thursday-update/

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,

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.


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:

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,

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

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

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.:

This one shows how the high school assessments (GED, SAT, and, others) are being used against us:

My two part “Upskilling” articles pack a ‘one, two punch’:

The Council for Higher Education (CHEA) and the CCSS Machine:


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. 


Monday Musings: Two Wrongs, No Right

Don’t look now, but NC’s gone CCSS dumber!

Okay, so it’s not new news about the love affair NC has with Common Core. However, the latest move to allow both K12, Inc. AND Pearson into the virtual educational airwaves of the state remind me of the “Dumb and Dumber” guys.

The Backstory:

While I’ll not give you the entire past account of NC’s Virtual Public School saga, I’ll tell you this, it’s CCSS aligned. It’s been offered as an option for home education students. It’s a crock! Tax payer funding AND student disservice..what two wrongs we have. So, has your state made a similar move?

The Legislation:

Giving the state CCSS via Virtual School, the NC General Assembly passed the following:
From 2011, the Funding formula legislation (meaning the fees charged to enroll in the virtual schools paid by homeschoolers, etc.)  HOUSE DRH70171-LE-129A

From a special report on NC’s Virtual Charter Schools, this excerpt, “Virtual education is not new to North Carolina. Created in 2007, the state-led North Carolina Virtual Public School (NCVPS) offers supplemental high school courses to public, private, and homeschooled students across the state. NCVPS is the country’s second largest virtual school and it continues to expand.” Not too long after this, is this bit of fact, “Digital, online, and virtual learning are no longer endeavors of the future. They are here. North Carolina education is becoming more technologically enabled daily. Entire local education agencies (LEAs) are utilizing 1:1 device initiatives, and the General Assembly has mandated that the State transition to digital materials by 2017. The education-technology world is ever evolving, and no one knows yet how expansive it might become. As the State embraces new methods of education delivery and technological advancements, it is important to remember that each is only one piece of a very large puzzle.”

More About the NCVPS from the report on virtual charters:
“The North Carolina Virtual Public School opened in 2007, serving over 195,000 students since that first year. It is the nation’s second largest state-led virtual school with over 50,000 enrollments in 2013-14 from all 115 LEAs and many charter schools. NCVPS offers over 150 different courses as a supplement to local high school course catalogues and includes Advanced Placement, Occupational Course of Study, electives, traditional, honors, and credit recovery courses. All courses are taught by teachers licensed in North Carolina and provide strategies for active student engagement through a variety of technology tools. Teachers are required to make personal contact with students and parents regularly to maximize the student-teacher relationship. Courses are free to students who enroll through their local North Carolina high school. NCVPS is available to home school and private school students for a fee. The law states that the director of NCVPS shall ensure: 1. Course quality standards are established and met. 2. All e-learning opportunities other than virtual charter schools offered by State-funded entities to public school students are consolidated under the NCVPS program, eliminating course duplication. 3. All courses offered through NCVPS are aligned to the NC Standard Course of Study. NCVPS is a supplemental program and is not a credit-granting or degree-granting institution. As such, the student’s face-to-face school awards all credit. Students typically enroll in one or two courses each term with the remainder of their courses taken at their face-to-face school. However, a small number of homebound students take their full course load through NCVPS, yet they are still officially enrolled in their local high school and are granted credit through that school. Currently, all courses offered by NCVPS are high school level courses, although many middle school students who need high school level opportunities enroll with NCVPS. Development of middle school level courses has begun and will be piloted in 2014-15. NCVPS is not the only supplemental option in North Carolina for virtual education. Recently, some LEAs have experimented with similar programs on a local level that offer courses to students in single districts. Because they do not offer courses beyond their borders, they do not fall under the purview of NCVPS.” If you wish to have the entire report, visit: http://www.ncleg.net/documentsites/committees/JLEOC/Reports%20Received/2014%20Reports%20Received/Study%20Virtual%20Charter%20Schools%20Report/Virtual%20Charter%20Schools%20Report.pdf

Was it 2005 or 2007?: 

In the above report’s excerpt, we saw the year 2007 was given as to when virtual public school began in NC. However, a NCVPS financial audit from 2014, says this, The North Carolina Virtual Public School was established in 2005 to provide students with free, online classes that are not offered at their local schools. The Virtual School began offering online courses to high school students in 2007 and later expanded its course offerings to middle school students. During the 2011-2012 academic year, student enrollment reached 49,189, up from 6,984 in the 2006-2007 academic year. The school offers more than 100 courses and serves all 115 school districts and 36 charter schools. Total expenditures during FY 2012 were about $19.7 million.” Did you see the portion about middle school students? One report says expansion to them was 2014-15, this financial audit doesn’t give a specific date, but has lumped it close enough to 2007, you might assume it was about the same time. You’ll want to access the audit. It gives a very interesting finding. Enrollment numbers inflated and teacher pay based upon enrollment. Virtual public schoolaudit

According to the NC General Assembly’s archives, HB2417 and Senate Bill 1616 from the 2005 legislation session gave $5 million dollars to the NC DPI (Dept. of Public Instruction) begin the virtual school. State Statute 116C-5 was modified to reflect the new type of school. See the Senate’s bill: http://www.ncleg.net/sessions/2005/bills/senate/pdf/s1616v1.pdf  House of Representative’s bill: http://www.ncleg.net/sessions/2005/bills/house/pdf/h2417v2.pdf

Interestingly enough in 2005, the Senate had a bill that’s been tabled for quite awhile, but COULD be playing into today’s educational snafu. The title of the bill was “Education Improvement Act of 2005” (SB 965). Part 4 of the Bill was subtitled, “21st Century High Schools”. You really should see this section. 

http://www.ncleg.net/sessions/2005/bills/senate/pdf/s965v1.pdf (*Note: you’ll notice in this bill it discussed the Governor’s plan for education. To see the General Statute it refers to: 

http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/EnactedLegislation/Statutes/HTML/BySection/Chapter_116C/GS_116C-4.html )

To see the NC DPI’s financial information for the Virtual Public School: http://www.ncpublicschools.org/fbs/finance/ncvps/

To access the official Virtual School website: http://www.ncvps.org/ (*Note: be sure to look at the RttT and STEM page in the “About Us” portion. Look at the partners under the “Our Partnerships”. Leading the partners, SAS Inc. with the CCSS algebra portion.)

The RttT Funding:

Thanks to the Race to the Top funding, NC Virtual Public School got help.
Thanks to the Race to the Top funding, NC Virtual Public School got help.

From the 21-3-14 Race to the Top update, Virtual Schools were #8 on the priority list. Pages 18 and 19 of the report give all kinds of information about what’s been going on. Full report: Statewide Education Initiatives in RttT

The Latest Part of the Story:

This is where Pearson and K12, Inc. enter the story. From the Raleigh’s News and Observer edition (2/5/15), the CCSS supporters will gain access to our students via virtual charter schools. (Be sure to read the virtual charter study. Ask yourselves, what accountability does a charter school which is virtual have? Where’s the funding, etc.) To see the N and O’s story, http://www.newsobserver.com/2015/02/05/4533524_two-online-charter-schools-approved.html?rh=1

Buzzfeed have a similar story on 2/5/15, however their’s was a bit more revealing. It shared that because of a ‘rider’ in the state budget, that’s how the 2 pro CCSS companies gained a victory in having access to students. See: http://www.buzzfeed.com/mollyhensleyclancy/online-charter-schools-winning#.fg2VPO4AM1

Related articles:
Huffington Post has an entire page of articles on the poor performance of K12, Inc. See: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/k12-inc/

From 2012, “Getting Smart” shared how NC blocked the K12, Inc. from operating in the state. See: http://gettingsmart.com/2012/06/north-carolina-blocks-online-public-charter/

From 2014, “NC Policy Watch” shared how NC blocked K12, Inc. via the State Board. See: http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org/tag/k12-inc/

From the John Locke’s Lockeroom, NC’s track record with Pearson. See: http://lockerroom.johnlocke.org/2015/02/11/politico-nc-dpi-gives-no-bid-contracts-to-no-good-pearson/

From NC’s DPI, just one of the many contracts they’ve awarded Pearson (you can use this link to access the one and then search for the others). See: http://www.dpi.state.nc.us/publicnotices/notices/2013-14/20140515-01

An announcement from 2013, June Atkinson writes  about Pearson’s presence. See: Pearson-IIS_Announcement

From LadyLiberty1885, in 2014, the contract Pearson got with NC Community Colleges (which are also CCSS aligned). See: http://ladyliberty1885.com/2014/10/12/pearson-equella-contract-for-nc-community-colleges-35284419/

The back door for Non Public Students to CCSS is the NCVPS. See the below screen shot to see how.


So, what about your state? Is it providing for its students in the ways NC is? Have you looked at every corner of your state’s budget, state’s education legislation? Have you contacted any home school group or private school group to see if they are aware of the back doors? Don’t let your state get dumber when it comes to CCSS!