Tag Archives: Transforming Education

It’s Good to Have Friends

Just a couple of days ago, one of my long-time Warrior friends, John E. in Nevada, contacted me with some good news. He’d written an article for his local paper and it was published!

He wanted me to share it as the topic is the obsessive and intrusive data mining we see happening every day in schools across America.

So, that said, here’s the link to this article:
http://www.rgj.com/story/opinion/voices/2017/01/04/one-view-parents-deserve-know-how-washoe-schools-sharing-kids-data/96165178/

Here are the main points John knows are vital to share:

1) John’s article refers to a 11/29/16 meeting where his county’s school board made a presentation. The reporter who was there gathered quite a bit of evidence from that meeting and published a separate article about the massive amounts of data (school related and not) being taken from students. (*Note: that article is worth reading as well. Find it: http://www.rgj.com/story/news/education/2016/11/29/security-student-information-called-into-question/94634484/ )

2) John is also the administrator of the Nevadans Against Common Core. As long as I’ve been sharing my research nationwide,  his note about not only fighting Common Core, but the data mining reminds me how serious a Warrior he is.

3) “Infinite Campus” is the data mining tool of choice in all the NV school districts.

4) Google Apps of Ed, Edmodo, and Microsoft’s third party data collection and use is a big concern to many parents in John’s district. Good for them! Hold those leaders accountable, ask the tough questions and do not accept a non-responsive answer.

5) While Edmodo is ‘free’ to school districts, the money made to pay for it is based off the student data itself.

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The remainder of this article will be to look behind the curtains of the data collectors to see what more we need to learn and share.
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Washoe’s School District:

Their website: http://www.washoeschools.net/

I found the answer to WHY all this data’s collected. See below:

washoedata

In a few words, we can see the reason is a streamlined track from kindergarten to college graduation for ‘post-secondary success’.

What we also need to know is that this particular district began data mining students back in 1998, well before all the ‘college and career’ or ‘post-secondary readiness’ cow-chip-education-reform-rhetoric. According to the document I found, it was determined (some time between 1998 and now) that such information was needed and a P-16 data tracking system (called the Education Alliance P-16 Council) was created. Below is what Washoe’s been up to since the Council was created. Note the CCSS Machine member group highlighted:

washnga
To access the entire document for yourselves (with quite a bit of useful research and evidence for CTE, Career Tech Ed; AP (Advanced Placement); IB (International Baccalaureate); and more:
http://www.washoeschools.net/cms/lib08/NV01912265/Centricity/Domain/166/Data%20Profiles/2014%20Data%20Profile%20FINAL%2005-05-15.pdf

The Ed Alliance:

Their website: https://ed-alliance.org/
Their goal? Just like so many other States: workforce based educated citizens to grow local economies. Think, I’m joking? Look below:

washedall

To see the Alliance’s ‘P-16 education pipeline’ plan laid out: https://ed-alliance.org/our-impact/programs-initiatives/p-16-advocacy-council/
*Note, thanks to ESSA, more public private partnerships (P3s) are part of the mandates for every State.)

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Nevada’s  “Fascination” with a P-16 Pipeline:

First, some quick facts:
 1)  NV is looked upon as a champion CTE (Career Tech Education). I am referring to a Sept. 21st, 2016 Education and Workforce Committee Hearing where the NV Superintendent of the Dept. of Public Education was a featured witness. See my article:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/09/21/no-truer-words/

1a) The U.S. Dept. of Labor classifies NV as a Category 3 Apprenticeship/WIOA State (means they have fewer than 2, 500 registered student apprentices). See my article for where the other States fall in line: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/08/23/local-schools-open-for-wioa/

1b) While NV has not been awarded any WDQI (Workforce Data Quality  Initiative) grant money yet, it DOES receive WIA (Workforce Investment Act) funding until 2020. The funding is used in a State-wide program called “NevadaWorks”. See the U. S. Dept. of Labor for the WDQI information on which States have been given grant money: https://www.doleta.gov/performance/workforcetechnicalassist.cfm
“NevadaWorks”
website: http://www.nevadaworks.com/

If you’re not sure what WDQI grant money does for your State, see below:

wdqidatafact
To learn how NV uses its data to fit into the “NevadaWorks”nevada-wig-annual_report_py_2014-with-signature-page


2) WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) embedded the Common Core’s CTE into its language 21 different times! (See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/01/05/essa-ties-to-wioa-2014-and-new-citizens/ )

 3) HEA (Higher Education Act, last updated in 2008) is also embedded in BOTH WIOA and ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act). (See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/12/05/weekend-news-essas-untold-ties-to-hea/ )

4) CTE is embedded in HEA. NV was one of the first grant recipients. See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/09/12/weekend-news-heads-up-higher-ed-cte-update/ )

5) All 3: ESSA (formerly ESEA, Elementary and Secondary Education Act), WIOA, and HEA data collect, data mine, and use said data to streamline your student’s course load to fit a pre-determined career(aka: Career Pathways) and/or a college path, hence the need to switch the names FROM Common Core TO College and Career Readiness! (*Note: to see the 2015 WIOA/CTE Alignment PDF for all 50 States, 2015-06-Aligned-by-Design-WIOA-and-CTE )

6) With all the legislative unity AND the P3s unity, education remaining in its true form doesn’t stand a chance in NV,or, any other State! 

7) From 2014, an excerpt from my article using NC (where I live) as an example of how fascinated the ed/workforce leaders were about joining our student’s data for a workforce based education, “The U.S. WIOA 2014 (the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014), as I’ve written about will take the U.S. Dept. of Ed’s Student Longitudinal Data System and merge with it.” (article in its entirety: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/11/06/tech-thursday-workforce-commissions-education-and-common-core/ )

Back to  John’s concerns:

Here’s an illustration of where all the data goes. While this was used in an article I published BEFORE HR5 (Student Success Act)and S1177 (Every Child Achieves) were combined to create the ESSA as we know it, the data mining hasn’t stopped. Each of these Depts. has 3rd party vendors as well…globally.:

workforceweb
While the 9 federal levels are easy to spot, look at the variety of other agencies which are not easy to identify as connected.

Put another way, below is the ‘talent pipeline’ illustration which will help you visualize what Johnny and Suzy are destined for in this data collected/shared and sold/aligned education era:

talent-pipeline-infographic
Image courtesy of RAF Automation.

Then, There Are All Those Apprenticeships:

Also part of the CCSS Machine/Fed Ed overhaul of academic education, is the American Apprenticeship Initiative (AAI). I’ve researched this White House led program and shared with you how it’s tied to data mining, career alignment, and more. See: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/11/02/to-what-degree/ AND
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/02/12/tech-thursday-aligned-apprentices/

NV ranks right up there, in this effort, too. Back in 2015, the Reno area (the same area John lives in) was awarded big bucks, here’s an excerpt from the nation-wide grant winners announcement,Board of Regents, Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE), obo Truckee Meadows Community College – Reno, NV Truckee Meadows Community College was awarded a $2.2 million grant to fund the Northern Nevada College Apprenticeship Consortium. This consortium, which includes employers Tesla Motors and Panasonic will develop registered apprenticeship programs to increase the skills and career opportunities for 400 workers in the burgeoning advanced manufacturing sector in Northern Nevada.”
(You can find the rest of the announcement in my article,
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/09/12/weekend-news-heads-up-higher-ed-cte-update/ )

Does your State have an Apprenticeship Council? Look below to see NV’s:

nvapp

If you wish to find their website: http://labor.nv.gov/Meetings/Prevailing_Wage_Files/Apprenticeship/

Related:

Infinite Campus information:
1) Infinite Campus is headquartered in MN and has access to 7.8 million student’s data/information across 45 States. They are big on ‘personalized learning’ and ‘transforming education’. See their vision and goals, https://www.infinitecampus.com/company/vision-and-goals

1a) Infinite Campus’s blog has an article explaining HOW they collect and use student data, see: https://www.infinitecampus.com/blog/is-history-repeating-itself-with-the-lms

1b) From the Infinite Campus’s news, this excerpt, Infinite Campus customers include school districts, regional consortia, state departments of education and the federal government.”

1c) If you wish to learn about Infinite Campus’s Statewide Data Collection:
https://www.infinitecampus.com/products/state-edition (7 States so far are ‘on board’, KY, HI, MT, SD, ME, NV, and the U.S. Bureau of Indian Education*)
*Not a State, obviously, but oversees all the education business of each of the Native American tribes.

1d) Current 3rd Party Partners (with access to Student Data) for Infinite Campus are:

  • BakBone Software, Inc.
  • BSquare
  • CDW
  • Parchment / Docufide
  • Flexmonster
  • Hewlett Packard
  • IBM
  • Kemp Technologies
  • Microsoft
  • ScanSource
  • ShoutPoint
  • Sprint
  • StarGarden
  • Vanco Services

See ALL the other types of Partners: https://www.infinitecampus.com/company/partners

2) How Congress is tripping over itself to embed America with MORE WIOA/CTE based education:
1) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/09/20/alexanders-rage/
2) 
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/08/09/congress-loves-cte/

3) Native American alignment to all things Common Core/WIOA/Data Mining:
https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/08/22/is-this-truly-the-best/

Closing:

Thanks, John, and the many like you who care about what is going on with our student’s data. I hope and trust what I’ve found and shared adds to your arsenal of information in fighting our War Vs the Core in NV and across America.

Weekend News: The State of CCSS’s SEL

During this busy time, anti CCSS Warriors, we have much distracting us in this War Against the Core (Common Core, that is). For today’s “Tech Thursday”, I’d like to draw your attention to the Gates Foundation funded ASCD (Association for Supervision of Curriculum Development) and their push for SEL (Social Emotional Learning). SEL is a HUGE part of the CCSS Machine’s effort to indoctrinate our students, teachers, school leaders, and, legislators.
We MUST know all that we can about the legislative moves in each of our states to truly combat this portion of the CCSS!

Why is SEL such a big deal? Consider this:
Our emotions were created in us to help us express ourselves. We are to rule them, NOT have them rule us. However, when you take the agenda behind the CCSSI (Common Core State Standards Initiative), you find the gist is to alter our emotions and MOLD them to fit the social issues (ie: social justice). This is a dangerous goal, anti CCSS Warriors. When you alter the mind in any way to fit someone or something else’s agenda, you are no longer your own person living your life as you see fit. You become a easily manageable cog in the CCSS Machine’s parts. So what is SEL? It stands for social, emotional learning. In short, it is everything connected t our attitudes, values, beliefs, and how we use them. Common Core has already proven out in many ways just how it is purposefully manipulating subjects taught, so imagine what it is doing to our minds?

Enter the ASCD:

This is not the first time I’ve written about this pro CCSS group. If you’d like to see what other aligned aspects of theirs I’ve written about, please refer to:
1) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/10/08/wybi-wednesday-ccss-and-the-altruism-movement/
2) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/11/21/fib-0-meter-friday-as-heard-in-committee/
3) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/02/13/fom-friday-ccss-cant-be-wrong/
4) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/04/01/wybi-crystal-clear-common-core/
5) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/05/30/sic-em-saturday-ed-leaders-aligned-standards/
6) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/08/18/ftf-ccss-education-community-alignment-reaction/
7) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2015/10/21/wybi-tying-stem-to-ccss-again/

On 11/18/15T, ASCD helped host a SEL webinar. The same day the hearings to continue re-authorizing the ESEA (Elementary and Secondary Education Act) began. If you’ve not been made aware of it, SEL is a HUGE portion of the combined bills (HR5 and S1177; Student Success Act and Every Child Achieves Act) that are to replace the ‘outdated’ ESEA!
What group was also hosting this webinar? The Rennie Center. Have you heard of them, anti CCSS Warriors? You should get to know this Center, if you haven’t.
Before we move on to the Rennie Center, I want to leave you with one quote from the ASCD’s author Mike Anderson,The Common Core State Standards give us a golden opportunity to teach social-emotional skills and academic skills together.” Want to see more of what he wrote about CCSS and SEL lessons?

“Here are just a few examples of connections between the Common Core standards and the five core social and emotional competencies outlined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL):

Self-Awareness

  • Use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as necessary. (Reading/Foundational Skills/Grade 5)
  • Introduce a topic or text clearly, state an opinion, and create an organizational structure in which ideas are logically grouped to support the writer’s purpose. (Writing/Grade 5)

Self-Management

  • Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach. (Writing/Grade 5)
  • [Mathematically proficient students] monitor and evaluate their progress and change course if necessary. (Math Practice Standard 1)

Social Awareness

  • Describe how a narrator’s or speaker’s point of view influences how events are described. (Speaking and Listening/Grade 5)
  • Engage in a range of collaborative discussions with diverse partners on grade 5 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly. (Speaking and Listening/Grade 5)

Relationship Skills

  • With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed. (Writing/Grade 5)
  • [Mathematically proficient students] justify their conclusions, communicate them to others, and respond to the arguments of others. (Math Practice Standard 3)

Responsible Decision Making

  • Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material. (Speaking and Listening/Grade 5)
  • Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions and carry out assigned roles. (Speaking and Listening/Grade 5)”
    Source: http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational_leadership/oct15/vol73/num02/Social-Emotional_Learning_and_Academics@_Better_Together.aspx

Enter the Rennie Center:

This Center is yet another ‘education and research policy’ group. Their website address is:
http://www.renniecenter.org/
Below is a screen shot I got from their website:

Among the other focal points are college/career readiness, equity in education, and more!
Among the other focal points are college/career readiness, equity in education, and more!

If you didn’t know it, this Center is based in Massachusetts. Boston to be exact. From their website page titled “Our Impact”, read the following excerpt,The Rennie Center seeks to foster thoughtful public discourse and informed policy making through non-partisan, independent research and constructive dialogue on key education reform issues.”
What follows this statement is the impact of their work in key education areas.
a) family and children educational services
b) youth readiness
c) Massachusetts Teaching, Learning and Leading Survey (TeLLS) where all the ‘stakeholders’ weighed in.Here’s the link to the description of the 2008 event. Notice what group of ‘stakeholders’ was not included. http://www.renniecenter.org/events/090115_event.html
d) higher education
e) use of data to mold student outcomes
f) English language learners.
See all of the impacts: http://www.renniecenter.org//impact.html

What groups support and fund the Rennie?

Barr Foundation; Carnegie Corporation of New York; Hyams Foundation; IBM Corporation; Irene E. and George A. Davis Foundation; Nellie Mae Education Foundation; Noyce Foundation; United Way of Pioneer Valley; and the United Way of Central Massachusetts

Board members: http://www.renniecenter.org//board.html

Rennie Center presented an SEL event in co-operation with MassInc and Transforming Education on 10/26/15. Below is a screen shot from that SEL presentation.

"Academics", as we know via CCSS, are not true academics at all!
“Academics”, as we know via CCSS, are not true academics at all!

Below is what the Transforming Education’s definition of SEL looks like:

Where are the true 'academics' in this description?
Where are the true ‘academics’ in this description?

Anti CCSS Warriors, you should view the entire presentation to know what else, and, which educational groups are being targeted! See: 151026_SELpresentation
Other Rennie Center items you need to know:
If you’d like to see how The Rennie Center crunches students and teacher data to reform and align education: RennieMassData
To see how The Rennie Center has reported the use of Title One Funding in MA to align and reform education, RennieTitleOne
How does Title One Funding play into SEL? The re-authorization of the ESEA? Portability of funds or funds which are being proposed to follow your child throughout their education. (ie: Education Savings Accounts, tax credit scholarships, vouchers)

The ASCD and Rennie Center’s 11/18/15 SEL presentation handout notes: social-emotional-learning-webinar-handouts-111815
The ASCD/Rennie Center webinar:  http://www.ascd.org/professional-development/webinars/social-and-emotional-learning-policy-and-practice-webinar.aspx
There are several in-depth things you MUST listen for during this almost hour long webinar! If you don’t have time now to listen, below I have provided some of the high points, but trust me, there is SO much more. I have notes I will be happy to share with you, just contact me via the comments section.

 

What We Need to Know to Look for in Our States Concerning SEL:

1) re-purposing school budgets, combining funds and resources so they are open to all involved

2) college and career readiness departments or committees, especially on the local level and often embedded in community projects.

3) developing a SEL program or initiative (or refreshing an existing SEL program)
ASCD has a ‘how to launch a SEL program article you should read, see:
http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/may97/vol54/num08/How-to-Launch-a-Social-$-Emotional-Learning-Program.aspx

4) Ethic, moral, or, sex education courses and curricula (all parts of the ‘social issues/justice’ portion of CCSS). With the whole community is in this approach, note that means any group seen as invested in education will have access to your students via ‘educational opportunities’.

5) community wide SEL programs or initiatives (ie: 21st Century Community Learning Centers or Strive Together cities (part of KnowledgeWorks) I’ve written about both of these several times, if you’d like the articles, let me know.

6) How higher learning institutions and other LEAs(local education agencies) are helping align our students, SEL, and Positive Behavior Interventions (also a big part of the Title One Funding, and is set to impact every student via the re-authorized ESEA). (ie: The NC Dept. of Public Instruction’s SEL Foundation’s 2013 newsletter for early education. See: NC-DPI SEFEL newsletter_4-3-13_0 ; Vanderbilt University’s SEL Center for Early Education, see: http://csefel.vanderbilt.edu/resources/states.html)

7) Youth Development Initiatives (ie: after school programs, mentors, ‘real world’ preparation)

8) state level SEL indicators such as:

From 2011 and the National Center for Children in Poverty
From 2011 and the National Center for Children in Poverty (to see the rest of this eye opening report: SELstateindicators

Closing:

With the rush job Congress is giving the re-authorization of the ESEA, the upcoming vote, and the fact the public will NOT have access to the voluminous bill, we have much we need to be preparing for! SEL will NOT go away anytime soon, like everything else connected to the CCSS Machine, it will continue to grind away at not only our educational system, but everyone involved until they become a manipulated version of whom they used to be!