Tag Archives: NSF

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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ESSA and Digital Overload

ccssattribute

It’s a virtual (digital) overload out there!

For today’s ‘Tech Thursday’, we will look in the ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) for all the digital parts of education via College and Career Readiness (the new ‘Common Core’ name). (*Note:  in the ESSA, ‘Standards’ is innocently stated as “Challenging State Academic Standards”). Why do I point this out? The law (ESSA) uses both phrases for education!

Why is digital learning a topic worth looking into? An Initiative called ‘Digital Promise’, fits oh-so-nicely into the CCSS Machine’s plans for education overhaul. As we have seen with top-down initiatives in America, where there is a plan, there are P3s (public private partnerships) who stand to profit BIG. Education is the new cash cow!

Where the Digital References Are:

The following list is from the ESSA Final Conference Report. They will also be in the Final Law Version, but the page numbers will be different.
Page 138: Your LEAs (local education agencies) will assist in the development of digital learning skills to improve academic achievement.
Page 363: Students via literacy instruction will be able to navigate, understand, and write about complex print and digital subject matter.
Page 450: States, communities, schools, and LEAs must work together:
a) to provide a well rounded education experience
b) to improve school conditions for students to learn more
c) improve the use of technology for academic achievement and the digital literacy of all students (*Note: ‘blended learning’ quickly follows this portion)
Page 451: Some element of on-line or digital learning must be included in education.
(*Note: further down the page is the ESSA’s definition of what this means)
Page 463: Rural access to high quality digital learning opportunities must be in place.
(*Note: the parameters are on Page 464)
Pages 485-488: The consortia for digital learning and state funding. What the uses of the funding mean and how they tie to digital overload.
Page 630: Preschool and ‘Ready to Learn’ digital content, especially via PBS (Public Broadcast Stations).
Page 943 begins Section 9210 of the ESSA Law. This is the biggest overreach of all!
Why? “Student Home Access to Digital Learning Resources”! To find out how successful students are at HOME, a Study conducted by the Director of the Institute of Educational Sciences (IES) no later than 18 months AFTER all portions of ESSA are in place! Details of the Study will be found on Page 944.

What This All Means:

First, the ‘Digital Promise Initiative’. Back in 2011, from the White House came this report,
Digital Promise is a new national center created by Congress with bipartisan support to advance technologies that can transform teaching and learning. It is being launched today with startup funds and support from the Department of Education as well as the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Answering the President’s call to action, a number of prominent leaders in education and technology will help lead Digital Promise. Board members, who were appointed by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan based on recommendations from the House of Representatives and United States Senate, include John Morgridge (Chairman Emeritus of Cisco), Larry Grossman (former President of NBC News), Irwin Jacobs (co-founder of Qualcomm), Gilman Louie (founder of In-Q-Tel), Eamon Kelly (President Emeritus of Tulane University), Mark Dean (IBM Fellow and Vice President), Shae Hopkins (Executive Director and CEO, Kentucky Educational Television), Vince Juaristi (CEO & President, Arbola, Inc.), and Shirley Malcom (Head of the Directorate for Education and Human Resources Programs, American Association for the Advancement of Science).”
To read the entire report of facts, https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/09/15/fact-sheet-digital-promise-initiative
Be sure you note the other related initiatives for Digital Promise. I would like to point out two names I saw which jumped out at me and are also very heavily tied to the CCSS Machine. NSF (National Science Foundation) and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). Why this two? I have researched both extensively and have shared with you in previous articles just how embedded in the CCSS Machine’s agenda they are.
To see the Digital Promise website: http://www.digitalpromise.org/
(*Note: be sure to read the Manifesto.)

Next, the Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools. See their webpage:
http://www.digitalpromise.org/initiatives/league-of-innovative-schools
Here is the number of students/schools, League members represent more than 3.2 million students in 73 districts and 33 states. Their experiences reflect the diversity and shared challenges of public education in America.” (*Note: Be sure to look at the initiatives the League has. You should be able to spot another huge  CCSS Machine member: Verizon. Also, note the adult level of activity.)
One of the featured schools? (*Note: you can find more of them, as well as the school I am about to feature in the League’s News category.)
Right in my town of residence: Mooresville, NC! This was the President’s (as in the U.S. President) ‘school of choice’ for the national address he gave about the success of digital technology. What he didn’t share is that the Superintendent of the MGSD (Mooresville Graded School District) was hand picked by Pearson Publishing for his success in Project Red (digital technology and data mining all in one slick program.) Anti CCSS Warriors, he was picked to come to a small school district to implement this digital shift in education! How do I know all this? See: http://ladyliberty1885.com/tag/project-red/ and the follow up article,
http://ladyliberty1885.com/2014/07/26/more-about-project-red-and-nc-ties/

(*Note: Digital Promise is also written into the HEA (Higher Education Act, 2008) in Section 802)

Next, Rural Education is something to dig a bit deeper into. Let me point you back to the U.S. House’s version of the re-authorization of the ESEA (Elementary and Secondary Education Act), known as HR5. Why? The recently passed into law, ESSA, is in fact, a big compromise of the House and Senate. Certain portions of the House’s wish list for education AND portions of the Senate’s found their way into the ESSA. Rural education was brought into the mix back on Page 280 of the HR5! I wrote about it,
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/03/05/tech-thursday-workforce-gunning-for-hr5/
This article will show you how Rural Education via the New Schools (another CCSS Machine member) will be all about College and Career Readiness,
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/11/19/tech-thursday-post-secondary-champs/
(*Note: The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture will surface in this one.)

What about the consortia for digital learning and the state use of funds for digital learning?
First, the consortia members include any number of groups involved in education, especially your communities, but, secondly, it is the language used which is alarming.
“ensuring that all service and  community partners are aligned with the  academic expectations of a community school in order to improve student success…” Then a bit further down the page you find this, “USES OF FUNDS.—Subject to section 4106(f),  each local educational agency, or consortium of such agencies, that receives an allocation under section 4015(a) shall use a portion of such funds to improve the use of technology to improve the academic achievement, academic growth, and digital literacy of all students, including by meeting the needs of such agency or consortium that are identified in the needs assessment conducted under section 4106(d) (if applicable), which may include….”.
You need to read Pages 486 and 487 for yourselves to see what those inclusions are. Let me just summarize that those including are students, teachers, and school leaders; that funds are to used in not only assessments, but purchases of digital technology; and more!

Those PBS broadcasts are our last area of focus.
When I wrote about the PBS presence among the Board members of the Urban Institute (a CCSS Machine member), it was in regards to early learning research and how it will encompass immigrant children as well. The catch? CBE or Competency Based Education. See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/11/10/ftf-prek-research-ccss-cbe/
Then there was their involvement in higher education, ‘American Graduation Day’.
See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/09/28/monday-musings-national-graduates/
Then the PBS characters from Sesame Street surfaced in another early learning program where the reading books had been aligned to the CCSS. See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/11/02/monday-musings-alignment-for-wee-ones/

 

Closing:

The IES and their upcoming Study?
That, my Warriors Against the Core, is the next article to be written.

Related:
For my look into STEM and how it is tied to CCSS Machine:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/09/02/from-the-files-pcast-stem-and-common-core/

For my first look into the NSF:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/02/18/wybiupclosewithnsf/

To read the ESSA Final Conference Report for those pages you should see for yourselves:
ESSA FINAL CONFRPT_112915

 

WYBI? Tying STEM to CCSS…Again

For my return to “Would You Believe It?!” Wednesdays,  I’ll share with you how the STEM Education Act of 2015  ties back to Common Core Standards. If you’ve followed my blog long enough, you are aware of the numerous times I’ve given you documented evidence of how STEM, STEM to STEAM, are all   aligned with CCSS. (Did you know there’s now a STEM to STREAM? (It stands for Science, Technology, R______, Arts, and Math).

STEM, by way of Common Core..and not in a distant galaxy.
STEM, by way of Common Core..and not in a distant galaxy.

So, What is the STEM Education Act of 2015?

If you haven’t heard of this new federal law, it became such on October 8, 2015. In a nutshell, the law states that STEM must now include computer science. While that sounds perfectly innocent, there’s more to this law than a simple course addition. You wouldn’t need a federal law for that.

Here’s one of the ‘there’s more’ statements: “to support existing STEM education programs at the National Science Foundation.” Now, before I go on, let me clarify that this statement is only a short version, or a summary of the law. If you were to stop there, again, you’d think ”this doesn’t sound bad”.
But, let’s look at the Act itself. Here are the other organizations this extends STEM to. “For purposes of carrying out STEM education activities at the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the Environmental Protection Agency.”  These cover STEM in formal education settings, but wait..the new law covers STEM in informal settings as well. As in museums, camps, or anywhere else you can have an informal learning environment. Here’s the direct language, “improve STEM  learning outcomes and increase engagement for K– 12 students, K–12 teachers, and the general public,  including design and testing of the scalability of  models, programs, and other resources.” You’ll also want to read how the Master Teaching Fellows are included. Read the new law:
http://docs.house.gov/billsthisweek/20150223/SMITTX_1020_xml.pdf
To read how the Gates Foundation funded EdNews broke the story, see: http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/curriculum/2015/10/new_law_includes_computer_scie.html?cmp=eml-enl-cm-news2-RM

 


So, Where are the CCSS Connections?

Back in June 2015, I wrote an article after attending an education conference. Here is the one sentence expert from that article that ties NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) not only to STEM, but CCSS, as well: “NASA’s CCSS/STEM statement: http://spacemath.gsfc.nasa.gov/media.html 
If you’d like to read the rest of the article and where I found more CCSS/STEM ties:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/16/terrific-tuesday-anti-ccss-news/

NOAA: When I searched the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website, I was able to find an entire library of NOAA, CCSS resources. See: http://search.usa.gov/search?affiliate=oceanexplorer.noaa.gov&query=common+core+state+standards
If you want to see their STEM resources, http://search.usa.gov/search?utf8=%E2%9C%93&affiliate=oceanexplorer.noaa.gov&query=STEM+&commit=Search
NOAA even has the Next Generation Science Standards! See: http://search.usa.gov/search?utf8=%E2%9C%93&affiliate=oceanexplorer.noaa.gov&query=Next+Generation+Science+Standards

 

EPA, The Environmental Protection Agency:

Their website is on you should certainly check out. Why? This agency is not only ‘big’ in education, but its ‘big’ into our communities as well. See their ‘students’ page.
http://www2.epa.gov/students If you visit there, notice how they are classifying their offerings for education. It’s called ‘Environmental Education’. See that page: http://www2.epa.gov/education

What might be of particular interest is their rather dated pdf on aligning EPA issues with those of educational standards. As they put it, ‘Aligning EE Resources to National and State Curriculum Standards’. In this document (from the days of NCLB), you will find the FCAT assessment, the ASCD (Gates Foundation funded educational company), and more! Please make note the EPA used the 1983 “Nation At Risk” report, and Americans questioning education as reasons to align their resources with education. The report concludes with how the EPA planned on continuing to align with education in the future. Get the document, EPAalign
You may find the Washington Post’s article about the EPA CCSS aligned reading materials a bit ‘snarky’. After all, who wouldn’t want to replace classic reading materials with insulation guides? See: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/compost/wp/2012/12/07/the-common-cores-70-percent-nonfiction-standards-and-the-end-of-reading/

 

 

The PCAST Report:

Rather than continue on with how each of the named federal agencies are tied to CCSS, I want to go back to when I first began to blog about fighting CCSS. After years of in-depth research, and sharing in among a few people also fighting CCSS, I was encouraged to go national with the sharing. Hence, the blog. One of the first articles was the original tie between STEM and Common Core. Since then, I’ve referred to it a lot. Why? Because that PCAST report laid out how the need for a STEM nation would use the, then, new ‘common standards’. Here’s an excerpt you might appreciate, “Nuggets of information include clear bipartisan support in the need for education reform in general (page vi); on page v, increasing federal involvement in education and a presence of public private partnerships is also brought into play. I found it interesting that the P3s were mentioned before the states.”
Be sure to read this one, warriors. You’ll especially want to see point #3, where the 2 prongs and 5 overarching priorities are laid out. Read: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/09/02/from-the-files-pcast-stem-and-common-core/

If that’s not enough ‘evidence’, be sure to go back and read the 3 part series I wrote about the STEM, STEAM, and CCSS.
a) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/27/wybi-stem-to-steam-ties-to-common-core-pt-1/
b) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/28/tech-thursday-pt-2-stem-to-steams-ties-to-common-core/
c) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/29/friday-special-post-part-3-stem-to-steam-ties-to-ccss/

Then there’s is the article about the STEM Affinity Network, The Race to the Top Funding, and Educational Waivers. Read, https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/12/02/wybi-wednesday-rttt-stem-ed-waivers-and-more/
For how CCSS/STEM devoted the NSF (National Science Foundation) is, read: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/02/18/wybiupclosewithnsf/

 

 

What About the Computer Science?

Notice in the new law it specifically adds computer science. How is computer science aligned to CCSS now? I found the Computer Science Teachers Association‘s map of each course in computer science and  its place in the CCSS. Get the map,
CSTA_Standards_Mapped_to_CommonCoreStandardsNew
You might be interested to know that the CSTA has ‘completed crosswalks’ with Google, Linux, Oracle, and Tech Corps. See: http://www.csta.acm.org/Curriculum/sub/CompletedCrosswalks.html
You can also see the CSTA map of the Computer Science courses aligned to STEM.
Get that map: CSTA_Standards_Mapped_to_STEM_Cluster_Topics-2
If you’d like to see the CSTA sponsors, see:
http://www.csta.acm.org/Sponsorship/sub/MeetOurSponsors.html
You shouldn’t be surprised to see Google and Microsoft among the sponsors, but you may be surprised that the College Board is also a sponsor. Warriors, remember, the College Board is funded by each state!

 

 

STEM to STREAM?

Above, you can see I have given you much information about the STEM to STEAM shift. But STREAM??  If we look at the EdWeek article, notice the ‘R’ could stand for ‘religion’, or ‘reading and writing’, etc. Is there a more non-Gates funded perspective to what the ‘R’ subject may be?
The National Writing Project has their opinion, ‘ agencies also realized that adding the arts to STEM is not enough. We also need to add the thinking skills embodied in reading and writing. STEAM may condense into STREAM!’ This project also states how the National Endowment for the Arts, the NSF helped with the ‘A’ in the “STEAM”. Refer back to the above STEM to STEAM articles to see how CCSS aligned both these groups are.
In 2014, Huffington Post shared their take on STREAM. Reading took the ‘R’. This article also shared how essential to the ‘core’ ELA (English Language Arts) has been. Read the article, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rob-furman/stem-needs-updated-to-str_b_5461814.html

In my researched opinion, it appears the STREAM, just like the other standards based education reforms, needs proper vetting BEFORE they are made into law, but more importantly BEFORE they are EVER introduced into our classrooms!!

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!

FTF: Update for STEM, Workforce, and the HEA, Part One

mountainsmole

Warriors against the CCSS Machine. We know that Machine includes STEM, Career Tech Education, and Workforce. , it’s been very well researched and documented. We’ve seen the train wreck Congress made out of the Student Success Act, the Every Child Achieves Act. We won’t have to wait much longer to see what is revealed when the re-authorized version of the Higher Education Act appears. Today, it’s a quick review of where the bill is and then an update of what we can prepare for.

Remember, the BEST warrior is a PRO-ACTIVE warrior.

Review:

1) The HEA (Higher Education Act) was created roughly the same time as the ESEA (Elementary and Secondary Act); 1965.

2) Ted Mitchell, from the U.S. Dept. of Education has been quietly working on helping re-vamp the HEA while Sen. Alexander has been much more vocal in re-vamping ALL education to align with the CCSS Machine. How do I know this? See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/10/wybi-sen-alexander-the-hea-and-next-america/ (*Note: In this article I began to reveal not only the ‘master plan’ for Higher Ed, but some of the pro CCSS supportive companies and organizations promoting the Alexander/Mitchell scheme)

3) In case you missed Part 2 of the Alexander/Mitchell articles, see: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/11/tech-thursday-more-alexander-hea-and-the-next-america/ (*Note: In this one, you’ll be able to see how maneuvering the Senator from Tennessee has been, the reports and studies created by pro CCSS educational groups or non-profits which are being used to help write a CCSS/CTE/Workforce aligned piece of legislation)

4) All of the rewritten, reauthorized education acts have a united purpose: WIOA
See this excerpt from my June 2015 article titled, “Halting a CCSS/CTE Aligned Workforce?”:“To the Warriors against the ‘Core’, we’ve learned over and over that the CCSS Machine has many parts to it. Those parts include Career Clusters, Career Pathways, the American Apprenticeship Initiative, Career and Technical Education, and the  Common  Core Standards (which encompass every subject, including the Arts and PE).

One of the biggest parts of the Machine? That would be the amount of legislation expressly written to protect the embedding of all this illegally based education reform!

To date one of the most important pieces of this type of legislation is the (already passed as  a law in 2014 on the federal level) WIOA. Also known as the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.”

Updates:

Where is the new version of the HEA, now? We’ll get to that it a bit.

1) Let’s see what related moves have been made. Why? Think back to the amendments offered to be attached to the mammoth Every Child Achieves Act. Much of the plan behind those amendments was to add in key pieces of language created to meet specific goals, or, in the case of the public/private partnered CCSS Machine, the agenda. When the newer version of the HEA is presented, don’t think similar tactics won’t be used. They absolutely will. How do I know?

See this excerpt from May 2015, “In a joint statement released on May 21, Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) announced the formation of bipartisan working groups tasked with addressing four key areas within the Higher Education Act (HEA) reauthorization. The four working groups, composed of HELP committee staff from both parties, will focus on issues of accountability, accreditation, college affordability and financial aid, and campus sexual assault. Though committee staff will lead the meetings, all Senate HELP Committee members will be invited to attend. Senators Alexander and Murray noted they look forward to the bipartisan collaboration in the weeks to come as the reauthorization process continues to progress. A draft HEA bill is expected this fall.” (Source: http://www.natlawreview.com/article/senate-help-committee-forms-bipartisan-higher-education-act-reauthorization-working-)

Remember all the ‘bipartisanship’ used in HR5 and S1177? Refer back to ‘confessional’, if you will, by Sens. Alexander/Murray where the pro CCSS groups helping create the legislation were thanked publicly! (*Note, if you didn’t know it, when a legislator publicly thanks a person, group, or business, it is because they were extremely involved and partly responsible for the success of the legislation passing!)

2) “America Competes”, both the U.S. House and Senate have bills with this name (HR1806, the Republican version/HR 1898, the Democratic version/S1398, supported by both parties)

2a) HR1806:
This version has passed the House, already has 4 amendments and 11 related bills! Here’s an excerpt from Section 115 you have to read, It is the sense of Congress that(1) in order to bolster the STEM workforce pipeline, many industry sectors are becoming involved in K–12 initiatives and supporting undergraduate and graduate work in STEM subject areas and fields,(2) partnerships with education providers, STEM focused competitions, and other opportunities have become important aspects of private sector efforts to strengthen the STEM workforce;(3) understanding the work that private sector organizations are undertaking in STEM fields should inform the Federal Government’s role in STEM education; and(4) successful private sector STEM initiatives, as reflected by measurements of relevant outcomes, should be encouraged and supported by the Foundation.” (*Note “Foundation” refers to the National Science Foundation)

Think a STEM pipeline workforce doesn’t sound like a bad thing for America? Consider that many public/private partnerships are ALREADY in place and working well in bringing about the CCSS Machine’s master plan of an aligned workforce (See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/25/tech-thursday-p-tech-its-here-its-now-and-its-part-of-the-p3-ccss-machine/https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/06/19/fom-a-new-ccs-coalition-for-community-schools/https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/03/31/ftf-ccss-pearsonites-at-your-higher-ed-campuses-now/) Each of these will lay out for you how STEM, the Workforce, and others have already begun to reinvent elementary and secondary education to align with post-secondary education.

To access HR1806’s text: https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/1806/text?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22%5C%22hr1806%5C%22%22%5D%7D (*Note: Be sure to look at the amendments, related bills; there’s certain to be more Congressional mindset) 

2b) HR1898:
This version passed before the Memorial Day holiday and gives the National Science Foundation (NSF),  the U.S. Dept. of Energy, and other related groups MORE funding. Why? To step up STEM, especially where energy is concerned. Now, that may sound like no big deal, however, consider what many of those of us who oppose CCSS, CTE have discovered about not only STEM, but the NSF’s ties to the CCSS Machine. One of my very first articles gave you the document where it was stated STEM would be THE goal and that Common Core was to be the means to achieve that goal. Since then, I’ve given you more information about NSF. NSF has been tied to CCSS in so many ways, it should be criminal. (See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/02/18/wybiupclosewithnsf/ )
To read the short summary statement of the HR1898’s text it plainly states the purpose is to improve America’s competitiveness AND other purposes. Sections 201-205 spell out the STEM, STEaM, and Workforce agenda. (STEM is short for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math; STEaM is short for Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math). Want to see how STEM, STEaM, Workforce, CCSS, and CTE intersect? Refer to my 3 part series: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/27/wybi-stem-to-steam-ties-to-common-core-pt-1/; https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/28/tech-thursday-pt-2-stem-to-steams-ties-to-common-core/; https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/29/friday-special-post-part-3-stem-to-steam-ties-to-ccss/

To access HR1898: https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/1898/text (*Note: be sure to refer to the 8 related higher education bills to this. You’ll be amazed at what you see planned)

On Thursday, we’ll look at the Senate’s version of “America Competes” as well as tie in Career Tech Education, HEA, and more.

Finally, where’s the HEA now? It’s not in any one bill yet; rather there are several HEA re-authorization bills in Congress. You can find this when you access the link from Congress. However, don’t assume this link contains the only ones on the table. There are others related to them, or others with different names. Ones we need to watch will contain many of the CCSS Machine buzzwords like ‘outcome based education’, ‘reform’, ‘opportunity’, etc. Also, consider what committees these bills are coming from and are currently in. If you see ‘workforce’, that’s a big clue to what we can expect. See the screen shot to enter the exact phrase to narrow done the search:

Visit: www.congress.gov
Visit: http://www.congress.gov

Lastly, remember this screen shot? It was during the hype just before HR5 passed:

A triple whammy of hype for us from the U.S. Education and Workforce Committee.
A triple whammy of hype for us from the U.S. Education and Workforce Committee.

Sic’ ‘Em Saturday: Using Community Colleges for More ‘Core’

It’s not new news that community colleges are Common Core aligned via either their ‘dual enrollment’ courses (which serve high school students) or the Career Pathways/Career Clusters tracks. However, I have found a new document that gives 21 ways to make the bonds of the CC even STRONGER.

SREB, Southern Regional Education Board:

“The Southern Regional Education Board works with 16 member states to improve public education at every level, from pre-K through Ph.D. A nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, SREB was created in 1948 by Southern governors and legislatures to advance education and improve the social and economic life of the region. Member states are Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.”

I’ve written about SREB a few times before. so I know how supportive of CCSS they are. Recently, the entity has published a Community College Report. Titled “Community Colleges in the South: Strengthening Readiness and Pathways” The work going into this is the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

As I normally do, I’ll only give you the highlights from the document. You can access the entire document from here to research on your own. What if you live outside of the SREB’s domain? I’ll be sure to show you how to find the Regional Education entity in your area by the time we’re through.

Point #1:
Community colleges are essential to achieving state goals — increasing educational achievement of the population, increasing access and completion, eliminating achievement gaps, closing opportunity gaps, and addressing workforce and economic development objectives. These complex institutions are also flexible, adaptable, affordable, community-based, user friendly and proximate to the state’s population.”

Point #2:
“Community colleges serve students, employers and communities.” (think P3 involvement on hyper-drive)

Point #3:
“SREB’s Community College Commission met several times during 2013 and 2014 to recommend policies and practices to increase students’ college and career readiness through effective community college and K-12 pathways. Composed of community college system leaders, legislators, national experts and others.” Below, are the numbers the Report provided:
SREBcommunitycollege

Point #4:
“In an effort to tighten the connection between state goals and funding, approximately half of the states in the nation are moving to outcomes-based funding. In states such as Ohio, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Mexico, Tennessee and Washington, state support — all or in part — is derived from a funding formula with metrics specifically designed for community colleges. Program designs in most states would reward institutions on a range of measures, including rewards for students who reach momentum points such as successful completion of a specified number of credits, transfers, success with underserved populations and at-risk students, completion of STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) programs, as well as completion of certificates and degrees. Programs with higher rates of completion receive incentive funding for contributing to a state’s educational attainment goal. Although now used widely, outcomes-based funding is still controversial…”

Point #5:
Addressing the admittance policies that could be changed, “The urgency to redesign both placement and developmental education is fueled recently by the impending, new college- and career-readiness standards and associated assessments being implemented by most states. These nationwide standards and assessments are more rigorous, especially with respect to reading and writing, and the more demanding assessments most likely will publicly reveal a much more severe readiness problem. To these points, the recent National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 12th grade achievement-level results for literacy and math — which apply performance expectations empirically linked to college success and to the new common readiness standards — show that only 38 percent of students perform at or above the Proficient level in reading, and 26 percent perform at the Proficient level in math. Hence, these placement and remedial challenges must be addressed so that colleges and students come closer to meeting the postsecondary completion goals set by most states…” 

Point #6:
“….emphases in the emerging new common college readiness standards, there is a growing call to address the fundamental and logical importance of students being able to read with comprehension moderately complex texts across a variety of content areas.”

Point #7:

Regarding math readiness, “In fact, numerous examples in postsecondary education (public and independent) have resolved this issue by requiring math other than college algebra (or precalculus) as a free-standing degree requirement. For non-STEM majors, many institutions accept, for degree credit, math courses such as finite math, introductory statistics, contemporary math and quantitative reasoning. It is thought that the logical and critical reasoning and thinking skills required for a degree — for future careers and perhaps for successful study in other areas of the curriculum — can be nurtured through rigorous engagement in these courses. The four major math associations (American Mathematical Society, American Statistical Association, Mathematical Association of America, and Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics) will issue recommendations this year that college algebra no longer be a general education course requirement.” Not much further down the page the discussion of which math areas would be considered as alternatives, “The construction and implementation of these new approaches to developmental education centering on these courses is proceeding through the work of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching’s Quantway and Statway projects and the New Mathways Project from the Charles A. Dana Center at the University of Texas.”

Point #8:
“…placement and readiness evaluation tend to identify and assess literacy skills based on students’ abilities to read texts of moderate- to lower-level complexity, within a narrow range of academic disciplines. Too often, these evaluations do not challenge students’ abilities to read and understand academic or technical texts, or to analyze and explain their meaning in writing. This ability to read more complex text in many subjects is critical to students’ abilities to succeed in postsecondary education. For example, the most commonly used placement tests, Accuplacer and Compass, use relatively simple texts and writing prompts. The lack of challenging literacy readiness standards and assessments explain why math skills have been viewed as the area which most contributes to the readiness problem.” Not too far down the page, “Moreover, many state K-12 systems have adopted new literacy standards, such as the Common Core State Standards and others, that are based on the deep and effective reading of complex information texts across different disciplines and the ability to engage in expository writing that parallels the higher text complexity.”

Point #9:
“Public schools need the direct support of community colleges to meet the immense readiness challenge. Community colleges need to lead in making more students ready for postsecondary education, especially in supporting systematic high school efforts to raise achievement in literacy and math skills. Community colleges need to engage in the following activities jointly with local public schools:  *Send specific, concrete messages about the literacy and math readiness skills needed.  *Support the need for junior-year readiness assessments based on specific readiness skills and standards*Support the provision and required enrollment of students in 12th grade bridge or transition courses based on the literacy and math readiness skills. These courses should be taken by students assessed as not ready by the junior-year assessments and provide a way to move developmental education from the community colleges to K-12.  *Provide concrete, actual examples of first-year community college course work to high schools. SREB will use its convening and advocacy capacity to bring together groups of states to address these recommendations; in light of the controversial nature of the recommendations…”
Point #10:
“One of the most underutilized strategies to support student degree completion is the emphasis on a well-defined, rather narrow pathway that students should adhere to in order to complete an associate or bachelor’s degree in a timely manner.” Not long after you read this, you’ll read this, “A structured guided pathway is an academic program map where faculty have sequenced the courses and identified well-defined learning outcomes. Pathways imply structure and guidance toward timely completion and next steps along the path. Structure and guidance are both important and costly. They include adequate and appropriate advising that focuses on careers and programs, rather than courses, and keeps students on track, requiring them to have a plan and declare a major early. Pathways help students build credit toward a certificate or skill base, should they leave the institution before completing a certificate or degree. They provide the opportunity to take accelerated courses such as dual enrollment and Advanced Placement.” Wait, there’s this as well, “While the definition of a structured or guided pathway may vary somewhat, policy-makers, educators and business leaders agree that postsecondary programs of study that lead to certificates and associate degrees must be better aligned with local, regional, and state workforce needs. Additionally, the programs and courses should be regularly evaluated against workforce needs.”

There is SO much more you need to read in this report! Access it: CommCollegeCom_2015
Of interest: The SREB upcoming College/Career Readiness Conference! Set for July 2015 in Atlanta. (see: http://www.sreb.org/page/1615/CCSSConference.html)
Who funds SREB? Here’s the list of CCSS funders we’ve seen so many times before:
*Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
*Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
*Consolidated Management Resources
*Lamar Plunkett Family
*Lumina Foundation
*National Board of Professional Teaching Standards
*National Research Center for Career and Technical Education, University of Louisville
*National Institutes of Health
*National Science Foundation
*The Pearson Foundation
*U.S. Department of Education

Want to learn more about SREB’s preK-PhD work? http://www.sreb.org/page/1068/about_SREB.html

Other regional Education Boards:
WICHE, Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education: http://www.wiche.edu/
MSC, Multi-State Collaborative: http://www.sheeo.org/projects/msc-multi-state-collaborative-advance-learning-outcomes-assessment#What
NEBHE, New England Board of Higher Education: http://www.nebhe.org/
MHEC, Midwestern Higher Education Compact: http://www.mhec.org/
Consortium of State and Regional Education Research Associations: http://www.srera.org/
American Educational Research Association: http://www.aera.net/

RMT: Update on the Technocratic Ed Reform

Back in Sept. of 2014, I researched and wrote about the ties between CCSS, STEM, and the Technocratic Party. Seeing  how much education reform has been firmly put in place without citizens input, I wondered if there has been any more recent activity.

From the original article, the 3 basic ideas behind the lesser know Party are the following,

1) Technocrat is driven to utilize technology – invented or otherwise – into a domestic and a foreign policy.

2) Technocrat’s mission is to improve our nation with: prosperity, abundance, liberty and security.

3) Technocrat continuously pursues a better vision for our nation and humanity.

If you’re wondering what this means in the scope of the size of government needed to pull all this off, check this quote out:

technoquoteWow! That’s a bit scary, right? Well, again, since the original publishing, have there been changes? We’ll take a look today.

A New Line:

Maybe the education reform isn’t new, Technocratic beliefs aren’t new, either. BUT I did find this new line: “Technology and innovation are critical to the prosperity of a nation, which creates a robust and a dynamic economy.” Followed by, ” ATA (America for Technocratic Action) is taking action to start the ground work for the coming change.” To be fair, the group says it believes in capitalism. That’s fine and well, but it is the level of technology and innovation we need to be looking into. You see, the Technocrats are relying heavily on technology/innovation to be the vehicle for all this change.

Stop and think about how much technology and innovation the CCSS Machine is using to reduce quality education to a dismal version. According to my previously published article one of the biggest Technocrats influencing education is Mr. Bloomberg (as in Bloomberg Foundation). Somewhat related to the Technocrats are AT & T, The Atlantic magazine, and others. (Be sure to go back and read the original article).

See the screen shot (click to enlarge) to see the updated agenda for not only America, but education as well:

(the red words are my words, not the website's)
(the red words are my words, not the website’s)

What the Technocrats Withheld on the Updated Website:

If you visit the updated Technocratic website, you’ll see all these categories with headings like we’re used to seeing. You know, “About Us”, “News”, etc. However, go to access the information and you must sign in with Twitter or Facebook OR create an account to view their policies on things like education. Website address is: http://www.technocraticparty.us/about

So, knowing what I’ve already found out from research and seeing that there’s been some change, but not entirely sure of WHAT it involves. I decided to go back and see if Technocratic and Socialism are related. After all, considering how the agendas of the CCSS Machine and Socialism appear to be, the Technocratic one doesn’t sound far from the mark either.

Technocratic Socialism:
From the following website, http://www.technocraticsocialism.org/policies/, here’s what the view of education by the members of the Party have, “Public education up through 12th grade should be mandatory and federally funded, with little involvement by local communities and no faith or culture-based exclusions. There should be experimentation within the public school system, with a variety of educational and organisational methods as options, provided the schools remain public, secular, compliant with a universal service obligation, and otherwise meet reasonable metrics. Higher education should be entirely funded through the general tax burden, and should continue at intervals for all citizens with an option of up to two university-level classes every five years.” This website is not American. For the first clue, note how ‘organization’ is spelled. It’s the International English spelling, not the American one. Clue #2 is when you access the entire policy page, you’ll see phrases like, “In countries like America”. I urge you to read the entire policy page. Note at the top of the page the comment about issues to be pushed and how America is ‘pushable’. 

The Economist has an eye opening article on Technocracy. It shares that Singapore is the best example of a modern technocracy. China’s mentioned as well. So is America, from many years ago. Here’s an excerpt, “Technocracy was once a communist idea: with the proletariat in power, administration could be left to experts. But the appliance of science to politics was popular under capitalism too.” To see the entire article, http://www.economist.com/node/21538698

What Hasn’t Changed:

The push for STEM, is still as much in the Technocratic platform as ever. The belief that Congress must enforce more legislation and funding for programs associated with STEM is also just as strong. Knowing how much of a part Congress has played in education overreach; seeing that the Technocratic Party believes the National Science Foundation (and other groups) should ramp up the education/social policy agenda, it wasn’t surprising to find one such tie between the technocratic belief and a NSF grant of $15 million dollars. The topic? A dissertation study on changing the public’s perception of climate change to satisfy an old technocratic debate. The grant was awarded in 2012 and was set to expire in 2014. You’ll find the entire description here: http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward?AWD_ID=1155402 (the technocratic phrase is in the ‘potentially broader impact’ section.

To Ponder:

When I was doing more research to update this article, I found a book on “Google Books” (the on-line libary) by James D. Finn titled “Extending Education Through Technology: Selected Writings by James D. Finn. The search phrase I used was “NSF Technocratic”. The Google Book took me to pages 141 to 144. Near the bottom of page 141, “Science, Technology, and Invention on a large scale have become such a handmaiden of industry in the United States that research and development are now regarded as basic keys to progress in our economy.” On page 142 the author is expressing how ‘free’ technology should remain (his words were ‘can’t be confined’). He compared the freedom needed for technology to best serve humans with that of religion or of love. He went on to say there must be a great temptation by those who are technologists to ‘not take over’. It is his next few sentences I want to quote, “As an example of this phenomenon close to the heart of educators, it might be well to examine the activities of the National Science Foundation and the National Academy of Sciences. It will be found, I suspect that the two of them have already overtaken some  functions of the U.S. Dept. of Education, the NEA and its departments and other possible ‘nonscientific’ educators, and are, busily spawning a new scientific educational bureaucracy. Such a bureaucracy is but the beginning-and there are many others in other fields of a movement I have dubbed “Neo-Technocracy”. Finn then goes to the express the Neo-Technocrats move into positions of power. FYI: Mr. Finn was a professor at the University of Southern California. He died in 1969.

I am so glad the good professor stated what he did above! Fast forward to my blog and you’ll find I, too, have looked into the NSF and the NAS. Here are my published findings:
Here’s my up close look at the National Science Foundation (an arm of the federal government) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/02/18/wybiupclosewithnsf/
To access the National Academy of Sciences(chartered by Congress) :
 https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/04/08/wybi-ccss-and-ngss-where-dumb-meets-dumber/

Well, there you have it. An update on the Technocratic influence in America. Did you notice how easy it was to circle back and find some of the same organizations? Let someone else know about this. We’ve got work to do!

 

 

FTF: Hey, Parents! The CCSS Roundup is Coming for You!

One group is targeting parents to 'round' up in hopes of gaining their support for radical education reform.
One group is targeting parents to ’round’ up in hopes of gaining their support for radical education reform.

We know the CCSS Machine has set its sights on our kids. I’ve shared with you (as have others) how parents have been targeted as well. However, did you know there’s one group dead set of creating enough pressure to influence parents TOWARDS radical education reform?!

The Rodeo Begins:

Meet AEI (American Enterprise Institute). Website: http://www.aei.org

According to their ‘about us’ page the Institute is a non partisan, not-for-profit, private group of folks interested in spreading liberty. Sounds great, right?! Well, AEI isn’t telling you everything. At least, not on their ‘about’ page. Looking at their academic advisory members as well as the board of directors, you’ll be able to begin to see that several pro CCSS schools, groups, and businesses are in positions of influence.

Searching their entire website with the phrase “Common Core Standards”, I was able to find this ‘cow’, “CC Meets Education Reform”. Published in 2013. This seemingly ‘liberty’ minded group sounds more liberal than free. Read this excerpt, “as panelists concluded at an AEI research conference on Monday, the state-led initiative will face an uncertain future as it intersects with additional efforts to improve schooling, such as teacher accountability policies and charter schooling. AEI’s Mike McShane began by explaining the numerous complications associated with implementing national initiatives such as the Common Core” Yes, they are steering us wrong with that whopper. We KNOW CCSS isn’t now, nor was it EVER, state led! See the rest of the article this quote came from as well as all the articles from the symposium where all this was discussed. See: http://www.aei.org/events/common-core-meets-the-reform-agenda/

A Cash Cow:

Knowing how much the Gates Foundation is a part of the CCSS Machine, we don’t have to look far into AEI’s funding to find the cash cow. Gates’ group became bullish on AEI quite a few years back. According to the GF Grants database, GF has granted AEI money on a consistent basis since before 2009. The descriptions of the grants reads more like the ‘livestock for sale’ announcements in the local farming news.

See the screen shot below:

Read all the fine print: http://www.gatesfoundation.org/How-We-Work/Quick-Links/Grants-Database/Grants/2014/08/OPP1110206
Read all the fine print:
http://www.gatesfoundation.org/How-We-Work/Quick-Links/Grants-Database/Grants/2014/08/OPP1110206

So Where are the Parents?

If you enlarged the above screen shot, you’ll notice no where did you see ‘parents’. However, did you notice the amount of influence to be given? More than likely, big bucks where thrown about (think a cow pattie throwing contest) to include parents. Why? According to one AEI writer penned this, “Families are the primary clients of public schools, but they are one of many groups that have a say in how schools actually operate. In all the technocratic fervor around school reform, it is easy to lose sight of the fact that public schools are democratically controlled. School boards, mayors, local referenda, and even public opinion shape the way schools operate.” Excuse me, what?? Have we, the opposed to CCSS, not seen enough evidence to support that schools are not as ‘democratic’ as they should be?! Have we not seen enough parents arrested, pestered, and run out like cattle from schools? Yet, we’re considered ‘clients’?? Give me a branding iron, please!

Watch Out, Electric Fence Up Ahead!

The above quote was from a December 2014 publication titled “Turning Lighting into Electricity: Organizing Parents for Education Reform” by Andrew P. Kelly. Mr. Kelly’s background ties him to NSF (National Science Foundation) which is into the CCSS/STEM roundup big time. Other CCSS ties connect him to Berkeley where he was able to hone collective bargaining in education skills. See all the rest of his bio:

 http://www.aei.org/author/andrew-p-kelly/

Key points from the report on parents as reformers include:

Collective action in our communities

How implementation of standards actually increases parental power

Choosing who gets to select the agenda the parents are to follow

How to use parent power to influence legislative steps toward implementation

NY’s involvment with InBloom

Jindal and CCSS

Also of a Worthy Cow Poke:
The groups Kelly uses as successes, be sure to look at each of them and see how/if they are CCSS tied. (for example, he cites Students First in the first few pages of the publication.) SF is tied to CCSS. See this article by the “American Thinker”,

 http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2013/03/suspect_common_core_standards_linked_to_studentsfirst_former_board_members.html

Or you may like to read any of the 54 CCSS policy briefs,  blogs, etc. that SF has on their website: https://www.studentsfirst.org/

The Document in full: Kelly_Turning-Lightning-Into-Electricity

Final Round Up:

I have a message on behalf of the parents out there who are opposed to being used, courted, or otherwise engaged in efforts to support CCSS as an educational reform we didn’t ask for, vote for, or see come into our lives legally (meaning honoring the Constitution).

I hope you like my meme I created to send a distinct message to the CCSS Machine!
I hope you like my meme I created to send a distinct message to the CCSS Machine!

WYBI: Up Close with the NSF

Do you know how much power NSF has in education?
Do you know how much power NSF has in education?

How much do you know about the NSF (National Science Foundation) and their ties to CCSS and STEM? Would you believe Arne Duncan was considered an expert by them back in 2007? Yep! It happened. But wait, there’s more…

A brief look at NSF’s History:

NSF has been around since 1950. President Truman signed the NSF Act after the atomic bomb was dropped. The goal? Peace via science. In 1953 and 54, the federal agency beefed up teaching in the post-secondary and secondary areas. 1957 brought the advent of the social sciences under NSF’s grasp. Then, in 1971 and 72, improving minority education as well as being responsible for all science education began. A makeover/upgrade for K-12 science curriculum happened in 1987. 2000 brought “Partnerships for Innovation” where education, communities, and P3s (public, private partnerships) were encouraged. (for more history, see their timeline, http://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/history-nsf/timeline/index.jsp )

 

Bring on the Common Core/STEM beginnings:

From 1999, a paper about workforce, common standards, and education: http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/1999/nsb9931/nsb9931-5.htm

From 1999, a paper about common math and science education standards: http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/1999/nsb9931/nsb9931-3.htm

From the Meeting Minutes for the NSF, May 2014, this is what I found on page 5: “For the topic of the Common Core, which was popular in the media recently, he called on Dr. Córdova for information on this subject. She introduced Dr. Joan Ferrini-Mundy, Assistant Director, Directorate for Education and Human Resources (EHR), for an overview on common core standards and issues for the Board’s attention. Dr. Ferrini-Mundy reported that the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts were the current phase of a long series of activity around K-12 standards based education from the 1980’s. These were developed by the National Governors Association (NGS) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) beginning in 2009 without a direct Federal role in the development. The two major goals of the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics are to create clearer and higher standards that (1) describe what students should know and be able to do in order to be ready for college or career at the end of high school; and (2) to ensure common outcomes across various jurisdictions. One of the major features of this movement is to look for equitable access to learning opportunities across the states, where previously there were major differences in expectations for students across the country. The Standards were released after an elaborate development process in 2010 for state adoption. As of 2011, 45 states plus the District of Columbia adopted the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics. The Department of Education funded two consortia to develop the Common Corealigned assessments of states that have come together with nonprofit groups to prepare the assessment tools that will then measure whether students are making progress towards these common standards. There is considerable controversy about the Common Core. She stated that it is complicated and it has multiple facets. Dr. Ferrini-Mundy stated that teachers in 45 states plus the District of Columbia were expected to work with the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics. NSF sees proposals for work that will help to better understand and to address the challenges of implementation of Common Core and other standards in states that are not using the Common Core. As NSF does not have a special program around the Common Core, the proposals go through the standard merit review processes. Federal support that was provided for their development is in the form of the support that the Department of Education provided for the assessment work. In response to a question on examples of Mathematics Common Core, Dr. Ferrini-Mundy indicated that the Common Core State Standards have many interpretations and do not prescribe curriculum or instructional approaches to ideas. One of the actual implementation issues is how to go from standards that say “here is what students should know and be able to do” to “what is the best way to effectively help learners get to these places.” She added that watching how these assessments play out will be important as they are coming at a time when the standards have not been fully implemented. From the NSF perspective, the potential of standards to help to improve access to good learning is important.”  (see the entire meeting minutes: http://www.nsf.gov/nsb/meetings/2014/0506/minutes.pdf )

From May 2014: The NSF’s vision for redefining education: AC_ReEnvisioning_Report_Sept_2014_01 (*Note: when you access this download, you’ll notice on page 6, the phrase ‘federal Common Rule’. If you don’t know what the federal Common Rule is, it’s definition can be found at the U.S. Health/Human Service’s website. You will be most interested to see what this rule allows/prohibits when it comes to the types of research and data collected on us as humans. You’ll want to see all the federal agencies with access to all this information, too. http://www.hhs.gov/ohrp/humansubjects/commonrule/ )

The Power Congress Gives NSF:

If you aren’t aware of how much money and power our U. S. Congress gives the NSF, you’ll want to see the 2014 FIRST Act. Then, consider how much is devoted to blending academics, research, and workforce. See: BILLS-113HR4186ih-HR4186FrontiersinInnovationResearchScienceandTechnologyActof2014 (*Note: you’ll notice STEM is used repeatedly. Remember NSF is the group which coined the term as a updated reference to SMET (Science, Math, Engineering, and Technology) to influence us, especially in education. The first evidence of the use of “STEM” that I could find was from a testimony given by Dr. Rita Colwell back in 2002. Dr. Colwell was speaking to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions as to why an increased federal budget was needed. (see her testimony: http://www.nsf.gov/about/congress/107/rrc_help061902.jsp )

Related:

1) It has been argued that STEM is not served well by CCSS. However, I had evidence that proves STEM, as an overall agenda item (meaning not only education, but workforce), is using CCSS as a means to an end. How so? See my previously published article: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/09/02/from-the-files-pcast-stem-and-common-core/)

2) The 2007 National Action Plan for STEM is another resource you may wish to have. stem_action2007 (*Note: you’ll be pleased to know that current Dept of Ed Secretary Arne Duncan was among the members who was considered an expert on 21st Century education.  He was, at that time, CEO of Chicago Public Schools.)  This report is slam full of alignment for what’s taught, P-20 Councils, workforce, global good, and the usual rhetoric we hear for CCSS. Here’s an excerpt from one of the sidebars, “Dewey urged scientists to convey the science way of thinking to all phases of education as a “SUPREME INTELLECTUAL OBLIGATION.” Although this includes critical thinking, curiosity, skepticism, and verification by observation and measurement, its deeper meaning has to do with the sense of wonder and awe that emerges from the student’s gradual realization that the natural world is orderly and comprehensible. Th e overarching laws of science enable predictions: sunrise, weather, and the hour and day of the return of Halley’s Comet in 2061. Th e appreciation and respect implied here are tragically missing from our science classrooms.”

3) For all the NSF monetary awards given for CCSS, STEM, (which may also include NextGen Science Standards), see: http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/advancedSearchResult?QueryText=common%20core%20standards&ActiveAwards=true&#results (*Note: one of the biggest awards (almost $600,000) was given for CCSS curriculum)

4) See NSF’s statistics for college-ready students: http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/seind14/index.cfm/chapter-1/c1s2.htm

5) To see a 2012 press release which states the shift from high stakes assessing to constant momentum tracking, http://www.nsf.gov/news/news_summ.jsp?cntn_id=126071

6) To see NSF’s $200,000 grant awarded to Clark University for developing NextGen Exemplars, http://news.clarku.edu/news/2013/03/05/nsf-awards-clark-university-200k-for-innovative-next-gen-science-teaching-exemplar/

7) Here’s a 2010 press release detailing NSF’s funding to the Noyce Foundation and how it all ties back to CCSS. See: http://www.aaas.org/news/push-new-science-mathematics-standards-described-nsfaaas-education-conference

A video from the NSF’s YouTube Channel that you might find interesting, where you’ll hear the “PreK to Gray” education phrase. You’ll also be pleased to know that the grants NSF gives use YOUR taxpayer money!

Here’s another one from 2011, where the First Lady pushes STEM. However, listen to the gentleman who speaks before her. Listen for his shared vision between NSF and the current administration’s goal for education.