Tag Archives: U.S. Dept. of Commerce

“Here I Stand, I Can Do No Other”

No, Warriors, I haven’t confused two historic figures. Yes, the picture you see is Joan of Arc. The title you read is a hat tip to Martin Luther as he nailed his 95 Points on that church door so long ago. If you have been following me long on my blog, or on social media, you know I have long identified with Joan’s fierceness. As far as Martin’s boldness? Yes, I’m about to go there.

A Certain Recent Release:

The President has recently released his 2018 Federal Budget Blueprint. It’s creating quite a buzz. You also know that in past federal budget releases, I’ve also gone over them.
In-depth and not unwilling to expose the alignment to the CCSS Machine.


The reality that the current President has promised to rid us of Common Core and yet padded the Administration with pro CCSS members, certainly has given us pause.

Trump’s promise for more jobs should also give us pause. Why? With the distinct presence of WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act), ESSA (Every Student Succeeds), HEA (Higher Education Act); the federal money in place right NOW funneling through each of these; the CCSS Machine up to its neck in all 3, we need to be pointing to the same priorities:

a) Workforce based education IS here, playing out daily. It plays out not only through Common Core, but Career Tech Education, STEM, Next Gen, and so many other areas.
b) It’s playing out in employment centers, community colleges, our public-private partnerships, job development programs, and so many other places.
c) It comes in the form of SEL (social, emotional learning), CBE (competency based education), PBLs (project based learning), and constant over assessments for skills to meet some business’s idea of what a human should be able to do.

For the President to rid us of ‘Common Core’, he needs to be ready to rid us of ALL the connections. Think how many times we’ve heard and said, ‘follow the money’.

Since D.C. is a favored conduit of the CCSS Machine, we know a lot of evidence is waiting to be exposed. Federal budgets have lots of money…and lots of evidence we can trace.

Every day we hesitate, the more ingrained the CCSS Machine becomes in the new Administration. Warriors, we saw the CCSS Machine take up residence in D.C. during the previous Administration. The Machine is STILL there.

Warriors, do not simply look at the Blueprint’s ‘Dept. of Education’ budget items. Read the WHOLE thing.

I wish I could tell you that the CCSS presence has been eliminated with Mr. Trump’s Blueprint. It hasn’t.

Flummox Awaits Us:

(*Note: ‘flummox’ is an old word for being bewildered or perplexed.)

Flummox #1): So, in Trump’s Blueprint, did ‘Common Core’ get the axe? Not by name. There were some things involving CCSS, but not too many. Warriors, eliminating CCSS in one area (no matter how huge), means it survives elsewhere.

Flummox #2): Did the Dept. of Ed receive cuts? Yes, but are those cuts enough? That, my Warriors, remains to be seen.

Flummox #3): While the President’s Blueprint is not the entire Federal Budget,the word ‘blueprint’ suggests that what the President wants may be changed by Congress.

When will “We the People” get to see the entire 2018 federal budget? What other CCSS Machine ties will be revealed when We see it? Will We have time to influence Congress or will it be too late?

degrees

 A First Glance At The Blueprint:

Mr. Trump has identified (in the opening pages of the Blueprint) that the following federally funded activities/groups/services will be eliminated if his Budget requests are approved.

I’ve researched each of of these and have proven their CCSS ties. I’ve provided the previous published articles so you can go back and read just how deep those CCSS ties go. We’ll need to know which groups will be spinning the pro-CCSS rhetoric in the coming days.)

National Endowment of the Humanities  


National Endowment of the Arts 


PBS (proof)
*Note: be sure to scroll down to see PBS’s embedding in ESSA.


Institute of Library and Museum Services 
*Note: there are at least 2 other related articles mentioned in this one. Find them here and here.
We should also note the question posed in the ‘Services’ article. If local areas cannot match federal funds, services like your libraries will close.


Woodrow Wilson International Center of Scholars (my article delved into the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Program. Both are under the same logo.) In the Blueprint, it is unclear how and if the International funding cut will impact the entire Woodrow Wilson organization.


21st Century Community Learning Centers
*Note: of the many articles surrounding 21stCCLCs, this is probably the most relevant considering the Blueprint.

Be sure to see the other connections you’ll also see in the Blueprint. Also remember, Warriors, 21st CCLCs are codified in ESSA. Will Trump’s elimination of CCSS, repeal ESSA?!

blueprintbuddies

Blueprint Agency Items “I Can Do No Other With”:

Martin Luther’s passion for truth and his boldness for making the evidence public drove him to state the declaration you see above. I like that boldness. While he found 95 pieces of evidence for action,  I’ve been able to identify 85 Concerns in the President’s Blueprint.  Here is the link to my special Guide detailing them.

To use the Guide, simply open the link. All red highlighted words will have several of my previously published articles which directly relate to each of the Agencies in the Blueprint.

Use the research to help you formulate your dissent to seeing MORE Common Core (and all its related entities) continued in the 2018 Budget!

Use any of the research to help you create a way to help remind the President of his campaign promise to rid us of Common Core. To rid us of the name only, solves nothing.

Lastly, share the Guide, as you see fit. Knowledge about the CCSS Machine is what keeps us powerful. We should be making as much of a protest about the Blueprint as we did about the new Secretary of Education’s confirmation.

No, we should be making MORE noise. We should demand a full repeal of any and all federal activity overreaching into education.

Warriors, it will take MORE than alerting the Oval Office with our priorities. We need to be ‘nailing these points to Congress’s doors. We need to be shouting these pieces of evidence boldly.

Warriors, we must do all of this. To do less, is something we should not permit. To take a ‘wait and see’ attitude could be dangerous to our fellow citizens.
Why? The federal budget impacts every age group, not a select few. With so much of the CCSS Machine still in our education, we must be a modern day Martin Luther of Joan of Arc.

 

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Know Thy Local Board, Parts 1 and 2

Part One:

Warriors Against Common Core, how well do you know your local school board? Are you a school board member? If so, how well do you know the State laws for your important position in the community? If you are a school board member, read what I’ve found and ask yourself, ‘Am I okay with this?’
These questions and more await us in today’s in-depth article.

The Search Began:

I was recently contacted by a concerned NC citizen. She needed help in figuring out what is State law for school boards, does local policy adhere to State law, and, is there any policy which side-steps the State, and goes to a federal level of compliance. All excellent questions.

I shared with her I’d already found one NC county school board with a local policy which, from all appearances, seems to side-step the State of NC and pledge compliance to the federal level. (See below)

caldwell1

Warriors, I profess that I am not a lawyer, but with a policy which reads like this, it certainly calls into question, why is a county school board appearing to go around the State law to pledge adherence at the federal level?

FYI: The ‘NC Standard Course of Study’, aka, ‘Essential Standards’ (Common Core rebrand) are written into State law. Look for NC General Statute 115C, Article 8.

While I didn’t find a similar policy for the county I was contacted about, what I found in our State law is worth sharing. It also gives us some BIG questions to have answered!

Part Two:

The School Board Laws In NC General Statute 115C, Article 5:

1) Access the Statute here. You’ll notice that the specific legislation is 22 pages. One of the most immediate concerns we should all be thinking ahead about: Will school boards across America change much under the ESSA mandates?

1’s Reality: Here in NC, our school boards are locally elected. However, not every State is the same. Elected or not, what does it mean locally? ESSA  increases power, both at federal and State levels.

2) In the paragraph marked 115C-36 (Page 1), Said boards of education shall have general control and supervision of all matters pertaining to the public schools in their respective administrative units and they shall enforce the school law in their respective units.”
The big questions: What is ‘school law’? Does the ‘enforcement’ mean ‘any and all measures’? What group holds the school board in check to ensure local citizens there’s no manipulation of the assigned power?

2’s Reality: Under ESSA, all education MUST be aligned to post-secondary readiness as defined by WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act). WIOA is not a specific ‘school law’. It DOES encompass education, but it is, after all, a U.S. Dept. of Labor law. How will NC, or, for that matter, ANY State, fare locally with their school boards when a workforce based law dictates education?!

3) Near the bottom of Page 2 and continuing on Page 3, “The local board of education shall revise electoral district boundaries from time to time as provided by this subsection.”
Wait, What?! Yes, according to NC Law, local boards can adjust districts. BUT these are depedent on federal Census information. Supposedly, the benefit is financial, BUT, consider these realities, Warriors:

a) The Census is being used by the CCSS Machine to orchestrate neighborhoods, manhandle museums and libraries, and more. From right here, in the town I live in, an excerpt from this article about local control and federal overreach.
“* You will see lots of data (includes the U.S. Census) and graphs used to support the moves; you’ll see the increased push for social and economic equality;”

b) ESSA’s codification of Promise Neighborhoods, as well as the continued creation of 21st Century Community Learning Centers.

c) Does your State have ‘Prosperity Zones’? NC does. There’s even another State Statute in place to streamline jobs and their training. By now, we know that ESSA is the ‘missing link’ between jobs and training. While the article about the Zones is from 2015, you can see just how overreaching the federal government is and how State districts will directly play into the overreaches.

4) Page 4, under the paragraph 115C-40, this excerpt, “Local boards of education, subject to any paramount powers vested by law in the State Board of Education or any other authorized agency shall have general control and supervision of all matters pertaining to the public schools in their respective local school administrative units;”
Your big question here should be, does my State have similar language? If so, what other agencies in addition to the SBE, have control over my school board? What about heavy influence over the school board, is there a tie to the CCSS Machine?

5) Pages 9-21 spell out the 63 responsibilites and powers  local school boards in NC have, as well as are authorized to carry out. I won’t list all 63, but, I will point to the ones we should all be looking at, regardless of where you live. Each will be followed by a question to consider.
5’s Realities: a)  “To Provide the Opportunity to Receive a Sound Basic Education”, page 9.
Who decides the soundness of a basic education? ESSA says the States must have the Secretary of Education’s approval for what’s taught. Where’s the local control there?

b) “To Regulate Extracurricular Activities”. With ESSA’s 24/7/365 mandate for anytime, anywhere learning (you can’t have student achievement without being hooked to a computer device), this is going to be almost impossible for local school boards to carry out.
(Refer back to the embedded articles above about wrap around services in the community.)

c) “To Accept and Administer Federal or Private Funds”, page 10. Warriors, this is huge!
ESSA increases the amount of P3s in our schools. P3s are public-private partnerships. We have seen the damage of P3s in our educational systems across America. One of the biggest supporters for interferring business with education is Business RoundtableBR was big on Common Core; they are also behind CC’s other names: CCR (College and Career Ready) and CTE (Career Tech Education). Let’s not forget some other big names in creating P3 overload in our local schools: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, your State Chambers, and Bill Gates. (*Note: Items 32, 32a, 34, and, 34a on Page 15 are directly related to MORE P3 education through Career Tech Education, Community Colleges, or School-to-Work.)

d) “To Sponsor or Conduct Educational Research”, bottom of Page 10. ESSA’s ‘educational research’ includes an in-home assessment for how well connected to the internet everyone is America is. See my article.Also, Warriors, any time you see ‘educational research’, think of what the underlying activity: data mining. Then, the big question: What group or groups did my local school board hire?

e) “To Adopt Rules and Policies Limiting the Noninstructional Duties of Teachers”, Page 13.
ESSA’s not kind to teachers at all. They are expected to teach to post-secondary readiness, regardless of age or grade, their pay will be factored by overall student success and engagement, AND, they will become quasi-doctors via the social emotional learning and behavior interventions. (*Notes: Look directly below the ‘teachers’ on Page 13 and you’ll see their training, as well as principals. Use all 3 embedded links directly above and apply. Then, refer to Page 18, Items 43 and 46) Our big question here: What pro CCSS/CCR/CTE/STEM groups is my school using at their discretion OR the State’s bidding which train, incentivize, or other wise reward for aligning teachers to ESSA?

f) Page 15, “To Appoint Advisory Councils”. This is legalized in yet another NC State General Statute. Appointing key positions is dangerous. No vote means no voice. This, in the long run, mutes the taxpayer’s and parent’s voices. Big question: Are these ‘advisors’ local or are they somehow connected to the educational reform?

Closing:

I noticed in searching some of the NC local school board policy pages, that more than 1 have not only our State Board of Ed to satisfy, but AdvancED, too. What is AdvancED? A  sold out CCSS Machine member organization. In my County, the exact words are:
“Maintain accreditation of its schools by AdvancED and/or the State Board of Education.”

We’ll pick this up in my next article, Warriors. We’ll also address how city school boards, private schools, home education, and, charters authorities will be treated in the ‘ESSA Era’

The Road Ahead

To my fellow anti Fed Ed Warriors, we find that February 2017 is winding down. It’s been a busy month for us. We’ve seen education history made, we’ve uncovered new evidence that our American education is disappearing into the global landscape, and we are about to see what OTHER moves our U.S. Congress is making to continue its ‘Educated Workforce’  shift via CTE, Career Tech Education, CP, Career Pathways, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), and CC (Career Clusters).

(*Note, the above highlighted link will take you to all my published articles where you can search on your own for the documented research. Of most importance are the articles with a 2016 date stamp, most of these are still in the wings to be passed into law.)
hebridge

We’ve Seen The Road Behind Us, What’s Ahead?

Currently, Warriors, Congress has several Workforce/Education Bills which have been introduced. From this group, most are in Committees. Below, the most concerning.

HR 52, “Earn While You Learn” or “Jobs, On-the-Job  ‘Earn While You Learn’ Training, and Apprenticeships for African-American Young Men Act”.  This Bill targets the African American male population (ages 18 to 39) while rebuilding America’s infrastructure. HR 52 will bring in skill based apprenticeships. The CCSS Machine also includes apprenticeships. Many of America’s Labor Unions are also named in this Bill.
Labor Unions have strong ties with the U.S. Dept. of Labor. Some of them also support Common Core. During the previous Administration’s term, CTE, The Dept. of Labor, and some specific Unions joined forces for aligning education to workforce needs. 

HR56, “America RISING” or “America Realizing the Informational Skills and Initiative of New Graduates Act of 2017”, will strengthen STEM in the workforce. You won’t see STEM as it is written, but you will see the components of it. Here’s an excerpt,  “Enabling recent college graduates to obtain employment with small businesses benefits the national economy by providing such businesses the human capital and technical expertise needed to compete and win in the global economy of the 21st century.”
You also need to know the ‘tag team’ of the U.S. Departments of Labor/Education will work together to make this Bill a reality.

S144, “Promise Zone Job Creation Act of 2017”, this Bill amends an IRS tax code to pave the way for creating more Promise Zone Neighborhoods. Several of the federal agencies already in the CCSS Machine’s grasp are involved in the designation of where new Promise Zones will be. This means data tracking, mining, and sharing; it means aligned education for workforce needs; and, manipulating communities. Promise Zones were codified as federal law when ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act was passed.) If you missed my article tying Promise Zones to more than ESSA, find it here.

workforcenochoice

Road Trip to President’s Desk:

H.R.321“Inspiring the Next Space Pioneers, Innovators, Researchers, and Explorers  Women Act” or “INSPIRE Act” is on its way to becoming a federal law. It also has a sister Senate Bill, S42. These two Bills target women as well as young boys and girls for STEM, espcially with NASA. If you are not sure how NASA is sold out to Common Core , see this.

fencemessage

Future Road Trip Stops:

HR280, amends the WIOA of 2014 (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) and supposedly will help dislocated workers find new jobs or start a small business. Why this bears watching: a) what part of taxpayer funds will be used for education/training and b) what part of the ‘consulting’ to take place will use data tracking/mining. If you missed how WIOA, ESSA, and Higher Education Act (HEA) are intertwined, look here.

HR159, if you have anyone interested in zoology, veterinarians, or wildlife study as an early college, college, graduate or higher education degree, you’ll want to see how they will be ‘encouraged’ to strengthen the workforce. The Depts. of Interior, Education, and Labor are connected to this Bill.

HR49, this Bill would create jobs while tapping into America’s natural oil and gas supply in Alaska. As we know, many Alaskans are Native Americans. Much of Alaska is also protected land via the U.S. National Parks. This Bill combines the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Dept. of the Interior, the Dept. of Labor, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife. Anytime you see ‘job creation’ remember that education/skill based workforce will be in the mix somewhere. No exceptions. If you missed how the Native Americans have been ensnared in the CCSS Machine, find that here. (HR228 is closely related. Called the “Indian Employment, Training and Related Services Consolidation Act of 2017”, it amends a 1992 version. Education for workforce is included. The Senate has a sister bill.)

Other job creation/education related Bills:

HR353 (weather/science, STEM workforce)
S129 (Sea Colleges/oceans, STEM workforce)
HR533 (creates jobs/sets corporate income tax rates based off OECD, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development information; watch for public/private partnerships for education/jobs)
HR272 (Amends Title 20 of the Social Security Act for grants to create jobs. Also involves education. The Depts. of Labor, Commerce, and Education are cited)
HR338 (creates 21st Century  jobs for manufacturing and energy. Educated, skill based workers are the target results)
HR419 allows for manufacturing businesses which help pay for education/training to have tax credits)
HR150 (amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to have skilled/specialized temporary workers.Ironically it is called the “Protect and Grow American Jobs Act”)
HR758 (targets U.S. Veterans for career transitions. Veterans and their educational funds are tied into Perkins Funding which is what CTE is also tied to in post-secondary institutions)
HR328 (also targets our U.S. Service men and women. This one will steer them toward STEM via renewable energy jobs)

madscientist

Closing:

Warriors, time and time again,  we’ve connected the CCSS Machine to the UN/UNESCO shift toward global education. A big component of global education is STEM. STEM wraps up the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals rather ‘nicely’.

As I look back on the above Bills, I see a host of STEM, CTE, and a sad road of aligned education for workforce based drudgery for our nation.

*Note: I’ll be providing a follow up article to “Calling Mother!” (was published 2/19/17) very soon. I’ve been given vital anti CCSS/fed ed/global ed information. Between “Mother” and the “Road Ahead”, this information will connect more dots for us to use in our War Vs. The Core.

Anybody Got a Fan?!

My fellow anti CCSS/Fed Ed/ESSA Warriors. I’ve recently finished combing through the NC Draft ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) Plan. I’m not a fan of what I read. If your State has released a draft, please get your hands on the information! NC’s is a whopping 145 pages of anything and everything connected to education…and the workforce. I looked up our neighboring State (SC). Theirs is 84 Pages.

I did try to find some other neighboring State’s ESSA Plans as well. Why? I was curious to see just how unique each Plan is shaping up to be. After all, we’ve been told time and time again, ESSA returns control of education back to the States. (*Note: if you’ve followed my blog for a long time, you know how full of BS what we’ve been told is.)

I did see some of the same things in SC’s Plan that I saw in NC’s. Coincedence, no!
Both contain the federal level requirements each State must adhere to.

For example, what type of graduates each State will have. Below is SC’s:

scessaplan
You can find the legislation which made this Profile a SC State Law:

To see and study SC’s ESSA Planhttp://ed.sc.gov/newsroom/every-student-succeeds-act-essa/draft-consolidated-state-plan/

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By contrast, here is NC’s Graphic:

ncessaplan

If you have wondered why BOTH NC and SC have the 4Cs (Critical Thinking, Collaboration, Creativity, and Communication), it’s because the P21 (“Partnership for 21st Century Learning Skills”) has both NC/SC  as ‘member States'(along with several other States). *Noteworthy: The “Partnership” has been a CCSS Machine member group for quite a while.   On the http://www.P21.org website, you can find 50 College/Career Readiness resources. CCR (College and Career Readiness) is also another name for Common Core State Standards. CCR is embedded in ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) ) Find the resources here  **Be sure to look for the ‘grit’, ‘workforce readiness in middle school’, and, more.

From Page 25 of NC’s ESSA Draft Plan:

ncessaplan1By July of 2015, NC had a “The Constitutional Mandate to Provide an Opportunity to a Sound Basic Education: An Update and a Recommendation”. Oddly enough, this 2015 Mandate is NOT all that different from the current NC ESSA Plan which will be submitted to the U.S. Dept. of Education later in 2017. To see the mandate, click here. If you’d like to see NC S561, click here.  To see NC’s ESSA Plan
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What We Can Learn From Both NC And SC To Apply Elsewhere:

1) Both had the 5 or 6 federal mandates of ESSA laid out in their Plans.
{These will all be consistent with the Secretary of Education’s authority}:
a) Long-Term Education Goals
b) Consultation/Performance Management toward Long-Term Goals
c) Academic Assessments
d)  Accountability and Support for School Improvement
e) Supporting Excellent Educators
f) Supporting All Students

2) Both will continue education which aligns to College/Career Readiness (aka Common Core, Career Tech Education, etc.).

3) Both will continue to update OR create State-level laws to support the educational shift FROM academics to skill based workforce.

4) Both appear to have no plans to cut the ties with the CCSS Machine member organizations we find so entrenched in our lives. (Example: Pearson, P21, Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), etc.)

5) Both will continue to include non-educators in the education process.

6) Both will continue to see Workforce Education efforts and legislation.

7) Both will more than likely continue their membership statuses in P21, CCSSO, and the other CCSS Machine member groups steering the shift in education.

8) Both will continue to workforce skill based assesssments like ACT Aspire, WorkKeys, etc.

**BOTTOM LINE: None of the State ESSA Draft Plans will differ MUCH from what is in place now. What’s in place now IS CCSS/CCR/CTE aligned. It will stay that way, but be called “Challenging State Academic Standards”.
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Other Things Of Note From NC’s Plan:
 I wanted to leave you with some other key items of interest.

1) U.S. Dept. of Education’s Date Stamp: 12/22/16 (NC’s ESSA Draft Plan expires 11/30/19).

2) From Page 2, ESEA’s (Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965) Section 8302 sets out in that the U.S. Secretary of Education is permitted to establish procedures/criteria after consulting with the State officials. Our State Education Agency then submits the Plan. The Secretary must establish every program in Section 8302 including the State’s materials and resources for education. (*Note: ESEA’s Section 8302 is Optional Consolidated State Plans or Applications. ESSA’s Section 1005 is simply titled “State Plans”. Do not be fooled by the simple title.)

2a) Also on Page 2, every State’s Consolidated Education ESSA Plan must create 1 comprehensive way to improve ‘outomes’ for students.

2b) Included in Page 2’s language is that all State Plans must meet the requirements of Section 427 of the General Education Provisions Act. (See a screen shot below)

section427
3) From Page 3 of NC’s ESSA Plan, Only after the U.S. Dept. of Education approves a State Plan, will these Plans be made public. The preferred method for publicity is to be in a published form.

4) Page 4 reveals our State’s Director of Data, Research, and Federal Policy.

5) Page 17 shows the Federal Program for Monitoring and Support Division of the U.S. Dept. of Ed. From this Division, $463,000,000.00 in federal funds for annual grants are available to school districts. (Watch for an increase in data collection). Here in NC, a Senior Leader Council is used to determine which districts/schools receive our portion of these grants. Based on 3 prongs: i) our Comprehensive Continuous Improvement Plan; ii) to be used by LEAs, charter schools, and non-government organizations to receive competitive federal funds, and iii) the NC Equity Plan (from the NC Dept. of Public Instruction) for data collection.

6) Page 25 tells what is considered as ‘academic indicators’. These are also known as ‘measures’. In order: Academic Achievement, Academic Progress, Graduation Rates, English Language Proficiency, School Quality, and Student Success. Page 28 will show you how the ‘meaningful differentation’ used in these indicators simply means ‘distinct and discrete levels of school performance’. (*Note: the shift from student to the entire school being measured.)

7) Page 29, points you to the School Quality or Student Success indicators. They are, in order: chronic absences, attendance, student engagement, student’s participation in co-curricular activities, physical activity, student participation in the arts, suspensions, teacher engagement, parent involvement, End of Grade exams (or End of Course exams) only in science, the CCR Index (College and Career Readiness Index includes AP Courses, IB Courses, WorkKeys Assessments, ACT, and (here in NC) 5 Diploma Endorsements (these are Career and College, UNC College, NC Academic Scholar, and Global Language). From the bottom of Page 29 to the top of Page 30, this “all schools must be included in the accountability system.” What NC hasn’t figured out yet is HOW to update the indicators above for every school type. How well each State does with this determines the weight of the Success Indicator. Federal education code lays this out, NOT a State’s law!

8) Page 30 goes into the 95 % assessment participation rates as mandated in ESSA. How will the States factor this? What data mining/gathering procedures will be used? How will all the schools without sufficient data gathering, or alternative schools (K-12th) be accountable?

9) Page 33 uses a word we’ve all come to loathe: “rigor”. Yes, we’ll see more of it! However, it’s interesting that once again, it’s the ESEA cited here, NOT the ESSA. Related is Page 38 with its mention of NC’s love for UDL (Universal Design for Learning). According to NC, UDL helps ensure all students will be College and Career Ready.

10) Skipping ahead to Page 97 are the “Challenging State Academic Standards for Math” in NC. They will be the EXACT ones used in the 2016-17 academic year!! “Challenging State Academic Standards for English Language Arts”? They haven’t been released yet, as they are still being ‘written’.

A Bonus Item!! Way back in the pages of the NC ESSA Draft Plan is the gold mine of all those CCSS Machine friendly ‘stakeholders’ in education we have wondered about. Pages 137-140 reveal the ESSA external stakeholders in education. Some we know about (example: Teach for America). Some are a bit surprising to see (example: Americans for Prosperity, NC Branch).

Closing:

Warriors, I’ve laid large chunks of evidence before you to illustrate how much of a farce it seems to be that our States will get to control education in the manner in which it has been explained since ESSA was signed into federal law December 2015.

Please take what you see here, start looking at what your State is doing. How similar is it to what you see here? What has remained the same in your State’s education sytem, what has been updated? What groups are involved?

 

Your Home…or Bust!

6edtech
Warriors Against the Core, I do hope your Labor Day Weekend was tremendous.

A New Lead in My Local Newsletter:

I must admit, Warriors, the CCSS education reform hasn’t died now that ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) is law. BUT what has changed are the ‘in our faces’ moves the CCSS Machine is making when it comes to not just education in the classrooms, but everywhere else, too! As we know the main goal isn’t just transforming education, but rather, our entire nation. Too much research (from this blog and countless other Warriors) has been produced for this to be a fallacy.

So, what could possibly be the ‘new lead’? What newsletter? How is this to impact me when we don’t live in the same location? What does this have to do with the CCSS Machine or ESSA? My dear Warriors, I’m so glad to share the answers below.

First, the short answers. Longer facts will follow.

1) The ‘new lead’ is the local cable company has a new program just in time for ‘back to school’.
2) The newsletter is one which is included monthly in the city utility bill.
3) This is happening everywhere.
4) It connects (literally) your town’s infrastructure to the CCSS Machine and ESSA (via funds). It also takes in WIOA funds.

Fact #1:  “My” local cable company is a P3 (public private) partnership/entity. I don’t support it at all. Never have. At that point, my decision wasn’t based on education research. It’s just a bad idea to use public funds for something the town has no right to use as was chosen. Our voices, as taxpayers, weren’t important.
The company’s name? “MI-Connection” (short for ‘Mooresville Iredell-Connection’. (Mooresville is the town, Iredell is the county) To say the enterprise has been welcomed, successful, and problem-free would be an outright lie.
The MI-Connection’s ‘new’ program? It’s called “Reach”. Actually, the ‘Reach Program’ is a 4 year old P3 between the cable company and the local school district. “Reach” stands for ‘Reach Every Available Community Household’ Program.

There are catches each household has to be subjected to. However, before we dig into REACH, look at the picture above. Look at the turquoise color on the right hand side of the emblem. “ALL PROVIDERS WELCOME”. I first shared that emblem not long after ESSA was passed as a way to illustrate the damming strings about to be used against our schools, communities, and homes. It’s happening everywhere, but we must be savvy in seeing it.

The REACH catches (qualifiers) each family must have to be involved in the Program:
a) at least 1 children (4th grade or higher) enrolled in the MGSD (Mooresville Graded School District)
b) enrolled children must also be enrolled in the National School Free/Reduced Lunch Program.

reach

Warriors, we know ESSA promised local control. But have you picked up on the National participation when it comes to lunch?! This is yet another clue that ESSA lies!

Fact #2: MI-Connection serves 3 communities, not just one. If you want to see the REACH webpagehttp://www.mi-connection.com/index.php/community/intreach
If you want to learn how the 3 communities are served,
http://www.mi-connection.com/index.php/about-us
If you would like to see the 2013 Press Release about the P3 between MI-Connection and the School District, http://www.mi-connection.com/index.php/newsroom/213-mi-connection-partners-with-mooresville-graded-school-district
If you’d like to see the embarrassment MI-Connection is to NC, this article from the Coalition for a New Economy, is a good one. http://www.coalitionfortheneweconomy.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/10.31.12-GON-MI-Connection-Final.pdf

In the Approved 2014-15 City of Mooresville Budget, look how much the telecommunications company costs. Taxpayer funds are used in supporting this.

mifunds

Fact #3: Isn’t it enough our taxpayer money is used for the educational alignment to the CCSS Machine? Must it also be our TVs and computers?!

In my “ESSA and Digital Overload” article, I shared with you HOW the TVs and computers in our homes were to be ensnared. Here’s an excerpt, “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.” (*Note: entire article, https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/02/04/essa-and-digital-overload/)

I urge you to read it, especially for the PBS information. You can also link to the IES article where the in-home technology assessment is broken down.
The IES article (in case you miss the link at the bottom of the page on the Overload article) https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/02/05/weekend-news-the-ies-and-the-essa/

If you missed my article where I directed you to discover how digitally upgraded, or not, your State is, see: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/02/08/state-digital-education/

If you’ve not seen how I connected the E-Rate legislation to the Common Core Machine (which certainly come in handy for ESSA’s infrastructure plans):
http://preventcommoncore.com/?p=1223

Fact #4: Since I first published the above article, what’s changed with the E-rate? How does it play into ESSA?

From the USAC (Universal Service Administration Company), look at the highlighted paragraph in the retirement letter from the Vice President.

erateup
Millions of students AND patrons of public libraries! ESSA and WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) have that aspect covered in whole-community alignment via grants and funding!  If you’d like to know HOW, please refer to my article “Hitting the Books, Part 2”.  https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2016/07/03/hitting-the-books-part-2/

The USAC is connected to the FCC (Federal Communications Commission), see below.

usac

According to the USAC, they’ve been around since 1997, and are a part of the NECA (National Exchange Carrier Assoc., Inc.) USAC is NECA’s not-for-profit arm. What does the NECA do? They oversee your local telecommunications companies!!

To learn more about USAC, http://www.usac.org/about/about/who-we-are/default.aspx
(*Note: be sure to look at the Board of Directors. Especially the representation of the Board. Education and your local cable operators are definitely involved. See: http://www.usac.org/about/about/leadership/bod.aspx )

As far as NECA’s participation, their website explains for you why tariffs (taxes) are collected for telecomunnications is a great thing. Basically it’s for the latest and greatest technology, faster internet service, including the data collection. Did I find any connection between NECA and ESSA? In an unexpected way, yes. See the screen shot:

NCEAsenate
I found this on their page for Washington, D.C. activities, which resume today. See:
https://www.neca.org/article.aspx?listid=26972&id=13179

Is there more, though? Yes, NECA is big on increasing digital literacy in America. I found 3 connected DL (digital literacy) programs to NECA.
One is Digital Literacy from our federal government; another is a national program for connecting students with National Free or Reduced Lunches to the computer; the last one will sell you computers, complete with Windows 10 (a mammoth data mining tool).

To see the sales pitch website service program, http://arrowdirect.com/
To see the federal government’s DL website (housed in the National Telecommunications and Information Admin. of the U.S. Dept. of Commerce), http://www.digitalliteracy.gov/
(*Note: the name of the initiative, “Connect to Compete”; as in job seekers. Think, ESSA and WIOA.)

digitalbadgework

The last website will lead us right back to where we began, the REACH program. Remember that one of the qualifications is each participating family must have their child in the National Free or Reduced Lunch Program? Remember how  I said this was happening everywhere?! This is the ‘mother lode’! It’s called “Connect2Compete”.

“Connect2Compete” is a flagship operation of “EveryoneOn’s”. What’s “EveryoneOn’s”? Another national non-profit organization dedicated to wiping out America’s ‘digital divide’.

It just so happens ESSA takes full advantage of this. HOW? Well, the Board of Directors former careers plays a part, as does the Advisory Council. Between the Microsoft folks, ConnectEd, and many others, the digital ramping up in our homes, schools, and communities is all but a ‘done deal’. But that still doesn’t answer how ESSA, a national law takes advantage of Connect2Compete. Look below, Warriors:

connectagenda
EveryoneOn also has a 100% give back program where your community-based projects can receive computers. ESSA’s got that angle, too. How, the Wrap Around Student Achievement Supports/Services, the 21st Century Community Learning Centers, and more! Who helps fund this 100% service? Of the 3 Foundations listed, only one stands out as CCSS related. The Wasserman Foundation. The Wasserman Foundation appears to be rather intimate with the Clinton Foundation, don’t you think?

wassclinton

To see Wasserman’s information: http://www.insidephilanthropy.com/fundraising-los-angeles-grants/wasserman-foundation-los-angeles-grants.html

To see the 100% project: http://everyoneon.org/about/model/

To learn more about EveryoneOn/Connect2Compete: http://everyoneon.org/about/

To see how literally connected we, as a nation are with EveryoneOn,

connectpartners
Use the website address to access the complete list of US locations. To see the corporate partners for EveryoneOnhttp://everyoneon.org/partners/ (*Note: be prepared to be sadly amazed.)

Closing:

Warriors, it should be easy to see that we have a tremendous amount of digital jargon to combat. Let’s do this! Remember, the CCSS Machine will not stop until It’s in your home. Use your 4th Amendment rights! Use the 10th Amendment.

RMT: Will You Help?

Every second wasted in mediocrity is another supportive move for CCSS aligned workers.
Every second wasted in mediocrity is another supportive move for the “CCSS Machine”.

Here’s the riddle for this Sunday: Want to keep Common Core Standards?

I sure don’t!! However, there are those who not only believe CCSS is the way to go, but are proposing legislation to help keep it for our students. Please continue to read on to see how you can help STOP the “Common Core Machine” dead in its tracks!

Washington Requests Our Input:

An avid reader of my blog and active anti CCSS warrior, Dr. V sent me a ‘heads up’ notice recently. The notice? A Washington, D.C. based legislator wants feedback on his bill to make sure we keep CCSS via an amendment to No Child Left Behind. Now, I know I’m not the only one writing about this, but I feel it only fair to alert you to the fact WE, the warriors AGAINST Common Core have an opportunity to leave feedback for this legislator. We don’t get opportunities like this often, so we need to active swiftly. We need to act with respect while being firm, truthful, AND fierce in what we have to say. Before I get to the body of the bill he’s proposed let me give you a direct quote from the good doctor, “You can write him Chairman Alexander who has asked for input on his proposal here: fixingNCLB@help.senate.gov (Note, the Chairman is actually Senator  Lamar Alexander, a Republican from Tennessee). Why the clock image above matters? Comments will only be taken until Jan. 21st, 2015!!

The Bill:

Officially, this Amendment to the No Child Left Behind Act of 1965 to be known as
“This Act may be cited as the ‘‘Every Child Ready  for College or Career Act of 2015’’ ” The Amendment is over 300 pages (387 to be precise). As my fellow warrior pointed out, on the surface the Amendment is being considered a great thing. BUT, as is usually the case with the Common Core Machine, there’s another side that IS a terrible thing. So, why would the Senator from TN offer this?? We’ll address that riddle AFTER we look into the ‘terrible thing’ embedded in this Amendment.

The Hidden-in-Plain-Sight Agenda?!:

From page 2 of the Amendment,  “SEC. 4. STATEMENT OF PURPOSE.  The purpose of this Act is to restore freedom to parents, teachers, principals and other school leaders, States,  Governors, and local communities so that they can improve their local public schools.” IF this could be a reality, then, yes, it WOULD be a fantastic thing..it would actually be honoring our U.S. Constitution!!

However, let’s look a bit deeper..other things that have been updated (oops, sorry, in legal speak, amended) the definition of ‘college and career ready’ now includes NO Remediation AND closing the skills gap (so I guess the false argument will not be gospel because it’s in an amendment that could become law?) LEA grants will be a whopping $15 billion per year until 2021. Add to that $400 million for assessments. Federal money will be relegated for the states to have ‘technical assistance’ in these 2 areas.

Okay, so , so far, nothing really contradiction-wise yet. After this above information, you’ll begin to see the part of the Amendment that is ‘the States this, the States that’.  The states will be held accountable to the federal government for several things beyond assuring that ‘challenging state academic standards’ have been aligned, adopted,and implemented.  It appears this is especially the case for the English Language Arts and Math (including the participation in the Nation’s Report Card, student data mining, continued teacher assessments, and, because of Perkins Funds and IDEA legislation those ‘career pathways’ will be cemented in education). What I kept noticing is the amount of power the LEAs will be granted under this Amendment (this includes PreK, post-secondary, outside the classroom, etc.)

Other nuggets of a darker side: family financial data as supplied by the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, The U. S. Dept. of Commerce’s branch, The Census Bureau (especially their American Community Survey, which is a mandatory on-going process that helps determine how tax dollars are used). For more about the ACS (American Community Survery, see: http://www.census.gov/acs/www/ ,  the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics; proposed sharing of assessments, standards on a voluntary basis between states, thereby saving money; ‘Developing challenging State academic standards and aligned assessments in  academic subjects for which standards and assessments are not required..’; ‘Refining State assessments to ensure  their continued alignment with the challenging  State academic standards and to improve the  alignment of curricula and instructional materials.’; ‘Evaluating student academic achievement through the development or improvement
of comprehensive academic assessment instruments, such as performance-based assessments  that emphasize the mastery of standards and  aligned competencies in a competency-based education model, technology-based academic assessments, computer adaptive assessments, and  portfolios, projects, or extended performance  task assessments.
Collaborating with institutions of higher education, other research institutions, or
other organizations to improve the quality, validity, and reliability of State academic assessments.’;
 the use of formative and summative testing will continue as well.

Renaming doesn't change alignment of education as a stark reality.
Renaming doesn’t change alignment of education, it is a stark reality, as we’ve experienced.

On page 113, ‘Career Technical Education’ will be replacing ‘Vocational Education’ if this Amendment is adopted. Why is this bad?  CTE (Career Tech Ed) is the Adult version of CCSS! By the end of the page, be sure to note the seemingly harmless word changes. For example, ‘student’s progress’ would be known as ‘improve student achievement’. More of these are in the next few pages which follow.
 Page 116 uses a phrase about information being made available to all interested educational parties. From what I’ve researched that could mean almost anyone, especially in the public/private partnerships seeking to redefine education.

Be sure you note the activity the Amendment would allow the Secretary of Education to exercise. (now, bear in mind, in the earlier portions, many restrictions were laid out) If the Secretary were to enact this exercise, Congress would only have 30 available for review/comments, the public would have 90 days. Whatever it is he could put in motion is expected to cause the States tremendous burdens. (see the pages 117-121).

Teacher reform is laid out in detail in this Amendment. So is having school leaders help transform curricula via technology. As with students, the States will have to submit accountability plans for teacher training, etc. (As above, the states accountable to the Feds..hhmm, does anyone sense something amiss??)

Page 145 gives you CCSS without ever mentioning it or the catch phrase ‘challenging state academic standards’. See for yourselves, ” providing programs and activities to  help students prepare for post-secondary level  coursework, including early college or dual enrollment programs, Advanced Placement and  International Baccalaureate programs.” (don’t see the CCSS ties in AP or IB? Consider who oversee AP courses..the College Board. As far as IB? Yes, it’s Common Core via the United Nations) I’ve written about both, as have others who are fighting CCSS. (here’s one of my articles about how indoctrinated IB schools/programs are with CCSS: https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/11/14/fib-o-meter-friday-ib-international-baccalaureate-schools-common-core/ )

Page 150 states that among all their professional development only certain types of groups will be included. Here’s an excerpt, “promote innovative instruction and learning strategies by nationally recognized organizations with a proven track  record of effectiveness in providing preparation and professional development activities and programs for teachers, principals, and other school leaders, particularly in  underserved areas.”  Pardon me, but who will be responsible for overseeing these ‘proven’ organizations? With so many private businesses with their fingers in the educational mix which don’t have any business there, does this mean they’ll be given the green light to continue to step in and reform education?? Not too far after this section of the Amendment is a bit about money from 2003 that’s not been touched could get tapped IF the Secretary of Education deems it needed. Where would these funds be used? National Programs!

This Amendment also allows for any non-profit OR for-profit entity to jump in a student’s education..as long as achievement is the goal (pages 153, 154).

Par for the course in American education, the Amendment continues to do all it can to promote outcome based education…both for STUDENTS and TEACHERS. Institute of Education Sciences will be key to all the evaluations of effective programs (page 164) This is only a few sentences before a section that tells us the Secretary of Education (or any other federal employee) can’t mandate states. This includes curricula, standards, and assessments.

Pages 189/90 mention National Professional Development Project and a National Clearinghouse. Be sure when you leave comments, you ask for more details about what these are, who they involve.

On beginning on page 193 is the ‘Healthy and Safe Students’. Now, do not misunderstand me, I’m all for healthy and safe students..just not under the federal government’s plan of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (also a huge portion of CCSS, Agenda 21). What do I mean? Read the Amendment text, “The purpose of this title is to improve students safety, health, well-being, and academic achievement during and after the school day by (1) increasing the capacity of local educational  agencies, schools, and local communities..” Items 2 and 3 cover a student’s mental health and drug awareness/abuse. Have we not yet had enough evidence of the federal government’s increased efforts to know this can’t be a good thing?? As far as the mental health component? Several authors, including myself, have stressed grave concerns on CCSS aligned ‘professionals’ charged with the mental health of our students. When you add that money and the allotment of it is added to this, I’d be raising a red flag!

Beginning on page 217 is the “Empowering Parents/Expanding Opportunities” section. Great!? Especially when you find that the empowering/expanding has to do with charter schools and magnet schools. (Note: I have nothing against these 2 educational choices, however, both have been largely considered as CCSS free..guess what? Not!) This section lays out how even MORE charter schools will be provided for. They’ll be known as ‘high quality’ ones. Not sure being concerned about charter schools/CCSS? Read: http://ladyliberty1885.com/2014/07/07/guest-post-common-core-in-charters-private-homeschools/ and https://commoncorediva.wordpress.com/2014/10/07/ftf-tuesday-clarity-for-sale-aligned-to-common-core-for-free/

As far as the Magnet schools?? “magnet  schools that will substantially strengthen the knowledge of academic subjects and the attainment of tangible and marketable career, technological, and professional skills of students attending such schools..”  Yep, MORE Career Tech Education to be written into law!

Be sure to ask for more information on the “Rural Education Initiative” and the “Rural Education Achievement Program” (page 280) This is yet another big way to write in CTE Common Core Standards garbage.

Page 287 lays out how the Secretary of Education will award in a competition style method money to states with a certain criterion for low-income based schools. (gee, does anyone remember this style of funding?? Can we say “Race to the Top”?) State level agencies will get to award money like this as well..to the satisfaction of the Dept. of Education.

Page 300 makes a point to include the Hawaiian Workforce Development Council in the mix..hhmm..we know Workforce is tied into not only the U.S. Dept. of Labor BUT Career Tech Education, Career Pathways as well. Be sure to ask about your state’s Workforce Council.

Page 318 is where in-home instruction for Alaska students will be impacted. State money will go towards education ‘readiness’ for preschool Native American residents. Near page 323 is how military children(U.S. Dept. of Interior enters the data mix when military activity is involved) will be impacted. I especially found the phrase ‘federally connected children’ unnerving. (NOTE: Puerto Rico and other U.S. Territories are included in this entire document)

How our tax dollars will be collected/used is also included under “Impact Aid”.

Almost at the end of the document is this nugget (pages 348/49) seeking a change in verbiage. As we’ve seen changes in wording are HUGE, especially where CCSS is involved. ” by striking ‘‘until an agreement for the  extension of United States education assistance
 under the Compact of Free Association for each of the freely associated states becomes effective after the date of enactment of the No Child Left Behind  Act of 2001’’ and inserting ‘‘except during any period for which Secretary of Education determines  that a Compact of Free Association is in effect and contains provisions for education assistance prohibiting the assistance provided under this Act’’ “

This is followed by the teachers using aligned standards, assessments, curricula, and programs all tied together. (page 350-51)!

For the entire Amendment, alexanderamendnclb

Act Now or Forever Hold Your Peace!

If you’ve not read enough to cause you to be extremely wary of this Amendment, I would ask that you review how CCSS got started, where it has spread, who it impacts, how it continues to ‘align and mine’ our students, and it continues to penalize teachers. Our time to act is short, but we MUST act NOW! How can you help? Go to the link featured here, http://www.fixingNCLB@help.senate.gov/

FYI:
The Senator behind this bill is not only a former TN governor, but a Common Core Supporter. See: http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2014/03/24/sen-lamar-alexander-let-s-don-t-talk-about-common-core/

Mr. Alexander was also, at one time at a federal level position. To see more about him and to gauge his involvement in CCSS or CTE,
http://votesmart.org/candidate/biography/15691/lamar-alexander#.VLrVdivF-hQ