Urgent — Back Senator Grassley’s Effort to Stop Federal Funding of Common Core

From ParentalRights.org:

“Call Today to Defund Common Core

ParentalRights.org is still researching the details of the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI), but there is no question that we oppose it. By shifting the power to set school standards and curricula away from the states, CCSSI would rob parents of the right to hold accountable those planning the education of their children in public schools. Today, you can take action to halt this dangerous program.

Senator Chuck Grassley (Iowa) understands the problems with Common Core and is circulating a letter to stop federal funding of the program for the coming year. He is currently inviting other senators to sign on to the letter as well. (Read the full letter here.)

Please call your two U.S. Senators and urge them to sign Senator Grassley’s letter to end federal funding of the Common Core. You can reach your senators through the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121, or you can find their phone numbers and email addresses on this page.

Your message can be as simple as, “Please sign onto Senator Grassley’s letter urging Congress to defund the Common Core State Standards Initiative. The federal government should not be using tax-payer dollars to pressure states into adopting education goals and curriculum, which should be decided by local parents, teachers, and schools.”

Background

Though advertised as state-led and voluntary, Common Core was introduced with tremendous pressure from the U.S. Department of Education: States must adopt the standards to have any chance at federal education grants through the “Race to the Top” program. Senator Grassley’s letter suggests that he recognizes these tactics as a means for the federal government to control standards and tests without directly setting those standards themselves. (Federal tax dollars are also granted to the companies that have created the standards and are preparing the tests.)

If the language proposed by Grassley’s letter is included in the next educational funding bill, it will clearly prohibit the Department of Education from making any of its funding to states dependent on a state’s adherence to Common Core. It will also make it clearly illegal for the Department to send funds to the companies pushing the Common Core standards, tests, and curricula.

Republicans and Democrats should all support this letter. The Common Core push was an underhanded move by the Department of Education to take over education in America. Members of both parties need to oppose this kind of power grab and go on record calling for its defunding.

Thank you for taking the time to make your opinion heard on this important issue.”

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13 responses to “Urgent — Back Senator Grassley’s Effort to Stop Federal Funding of Common Core

  1. danette3 posted: “From ParentRights.org:

    “Call Today to Defund Common Core

    ParentalRights.org is still researching the details of the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI), but there is no question that we oppose it. By shifting the power to set school stand”

  2. I’d love to see evidence that there is federal funding in Common Core. First, by tradition, the federal government stays out of curriculum. Has done since Thomas Jefferson’s day. Curriculum is a local issue (you should read Jefferson on education some time; you’ll come away with a much greater appreciation of our public schools and how essential they are to the operation of the democratic institutions in our government).

    Second, by law, no federal money goes to writing curriculum.

    Common Core is a project of your state’s governor, and the National Governors Association, absent five of the 50 states. It’s not a federal project, by intention, by design, by funding, and by execution.

    So, I gotta wonder: Is Grassley nuts again?

    What federal money does he, or anyone else, claim goes into the Common Core effort? Anybody got any documentation, or is this just one more hoax people are falling victim to?

    • Federal government has been involved in public ed for many, many years. Title I, smaller learning community, CRS grants, and many many more — federal money to states for specific hand-picked (by the fed) reform programs like Exped Learning, Essential Schools, Success for All, etc., etc. These are all programs designed to take state curriculum and align it to the reform program at hand, which means writing lesson plans, chosing books and resources, etc.

      • None of those programs involve the federal government writing curriculum, nor enforcing any view of curriculum. “Alignment” here means alignment with the local district’s plan for progress, K through 12.

        In short, there is no federal bias in curriculum. At the very least, you’ve been able to demonstrate none.

      • I JUST said that I have never claimed that the federal government has anything to do with writing curriculum. They do, however, RECOMMEND specific programs, many of which are reform efforts/programs that are deeply involved in indoctrination strategies and have resources in EVERY state to provide professional development and reform implementation of that specific program that was recommended by the federal government. Yes, states can do whatever they want, take it or leave it. That is irrelevent because the problem is they are taking it. If recommending specifically named programs like CES and referring to them as ‘the best’ does not constitute bias, then what does? http://www.ed.gov/edblogs/technology/files/2013/02/OET-Draft-Grit-Report-2-17-13.pdf

  3. For Common Core, all you need to do is go to the Department of Ed website and search for Common Core grants/funding.

  4. If you will look around on this website you will find most of the answers you are looking for. Also, google fed funding of Common Core. In the meantime, here is the original press release from fed department of ed on international standards and curriculum — “The centerpiece of the Obama administration’s education reform efforts is the $4.35 billion Race to the Top Fund, a national competition which will highlight and replicate effective education reform strategies in four significant areas: •Adopting internationally benchmarked standards and assessments that prepare students for success in college and the workplace;” http://www2.ed.gov/news/pressreleases/2009/07/07242009.html

  5. Federal government has been involved in public ed for many, many years. Title I, smaller learning community, CRS grants, and many many more — federal money to states for specific hand-picked (by the fed) reform programs like Exped Learning, Essential Schools, Success for All, etc., etc. These are all programs designed to take state curriculum and align it to the reform program at hand, which means writing lesson plans, chosing books and resources, etc.

    Title I and the learning community laws both include the specific language that says the federal government won’t run curriculum design. Every program you mention either includes the specific language — as Grassly’s letter hints — or is clearly under the law that forbids federal intervention in curriculum.

    Title I, for example, provides a lot of money to local school districts (almost always through the state government) to boost education for handicapped kids — using state agencies and locally-created curricula.

    In those few cases where federal laws or regulations mention curriculum at all, it is in a broadbrush, general sense. For example, if you look at the press release you referred to from the Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA), you’ll reforms are in governance and support to classroom techniques, and not at all toward any curriculum substance. The closest it comes is this, in talking about the Comprehensive School Reform Demonstration program (CSRD):

    The program has a comprehensive design for effective school functioning (including instruction, assessment, classroom management, professional development, parental involvement, and school management). It aligns the school’s curriculum, technology and professional development into a schoolwide reform plan to enable all students (including children from low-income families, children with limited English proficiency and children with disabilities) to meet challenging state content and performance standards and that addresses needs identified through a school needs assessment.

    The “alignment” requirement means that assessment, classroom management, professional development, parental involvement and school management, and curriculum, must be designed by the school and school district to work together to support the overall reforms determined by the local school district,

    In that law there is not a word about what the curricula are to be.

    I’ve worked in education for a long time. I’m not a neophyte at this. I asked, because you made specific allegations about federal involvement in curriculum, as did Sen. Grassly, and I am politely pointing out that there is no federal involvement of the kind you allege. There are no curriculum writers in the U.S. Department of Education writing curriculum for your local schools, and there never have been any at the federal level.

    Since at least the 1970s, U.S. students’ achievement in some areas has lagged behind other nations’ — like Japan, Singapore, Finland, France, Israel, and others — and repeated studies and analyses show that one of the tools other nations use to get better achievement is a nationally-aligned curriculum. Teachers can be made expert in delivering superb educational quality in college under such a system, instead of generally learning some educational psychology and classroom techniques, and then be given a textbook and told to sink or swim.

    Traditionally, opposition to such coordination, even at the state level, has come from organized groups who wish to block and censor certain subjects from schools. In 1957 studies showed that chemistry, physics and biology instruction was mired in the 1930s methods and information, because so many states feared that evolution might creep into more modern science (even in chemistry and physics, especially in geology). Instead of taking over science curriculum, the federal government stayed out of the curriculum fights, but provided money through the Defense Department to upgrade classroom labs, tools, and persuade scientists to go into teaching instead of research. The National Science Foundation created a host of materials for teachers to use — but implementation of curriculum was left to each district, with state guidance. California and New York, to pick two, strongly stepped up science education, and have become pipelines for engineers and scientists. Mississippi and Arkansas chose different paths; each state was left to its own choices.

    Education Sec. Ted Bell was well experienced in education (he started out as a bus driver, and served literally at every level of education); in the reforms that came out of the 1983 Excellence in Education Commission Report, Bell jealously defended local control of schools as part of his strategy to persuade local districts to buy into school reform, and as part of his deep convictions that effective reforms can only come from the local level.

    Bell’s rules are still in effect.

    Common Core was intended by the National Governors Association to provide states with the benefits of a fully aligned curriculum, but without any of the dangers most of us see in a federally-created curriculum (leaving aside the debate over whether fears of those dangers are realistic, or more detrimental than any benefits).

    So, let me ask again: What federal money does he, or anyone else, claim goes into the Common Core effort? Anybody got any documentation, or is this just one more hoax people are falling victim to?

    Those links provided do not suggest a dime of federal money went into common core design, nor that there is any federal involvement at all in the creation of the CCSS.

    Is there any documentation, or are we falling victim to a hoax? Show me the money, please.

  6. I never said the federal government designed or wrote/writes curriculum. I posted Senator Grassley’s letter from another website and asked that people support it because Common Core needs to be stopped. I could care less what dollars are going where, except for the fact that tax dollars, whether federal, state or both, are paying teachers to indoctrinate children – break the law. I care about indoctrination and that’s what I write about on this site. I care that national “standards” (not curriculum) will bind states to standards and regulations that have not been tested or proven. If you want details on federal money to Common Core, go to a site that writes about federal money to Common Core. Again, I support Grassley’s efforts because it needs to be stopped for other reasons than just federal funding. Further, the “we” or “they” don’t write the curriculum argument doesn’t fly here. CSCOPE-ers try that and it’s DOA. Curriculum content has absolutely nothing to do with whether indoctrination will or will not take place. It takes place regardless of content. Common Core sucks because there are communist indoctrinators behind it and I want them having NOTHING to do with my children’s education or anyone else’s. That’s my beef with it — period. For further explanation of why curriculum or content is a non-issue, read here – https://danetteclark.wordpress.com/2013/03/25/was-george-washington-any-different-from-palestinian-terrorists/

    and here – https://danetteclark.wordpress.com/2013/03/17/expeditionary-learning-working-with-authors-of-common-core-to-develop-model-curriculum/

    • What’s the point of asking Sen. Grassley to stop Common Core if there’s no federal involvement? It seems to me you support authoritarian government interference when it suits your fancy, rather than our federal system with checks and balances. If it’s not a federal program (and it’s not), Grassley should butt out, don’t you agree?

      Can you specify any of the communist indoctrination you claim to find? Now I worry that you’re calling voting, “communist.”

      Why are you opposed to students learning about George Washington and Thomas Jefferson? That makes no sense to me. Were there error in that history, you’d have a point — but so far, all you’ve done is point to powerful questions of history, with accurate information from schools, and said “no good.”

      You’ve got a lot of carps about Expeditionary Learning, all carps based on reputation, or smears of reputation. What in their work do you find objectionable?

      If you can’t specify anything wrong, what’s the point, other than to tear down America’s education and ultimately America’s free government?

  7. I’m not wasting my time repeating over and over again the same information that is already all over this website. Proof of Obama’s involvement in CES schools and the numerous people from CES schools and small schools workshop that are involved in CSCOPE and Common Core. There are copies of lessons and links showing extreme political bias and copies of pages from books and other resources that are full of bull and show an obvious bias that in many cases is unlawful in the classroom. If you can’t find it on this small website, I do apologize. But I really do need to get busy writing about other law breaking communist indoctrinators who are involved with the implementation of Common Core in several states. Hope you have a great weekend.

  8. Obama’s involvement is not equal to communist involvement. Shame on you for attacking Texas teachers who worked hard to put together CSCOPE curricula, the vast bulk of them Baptists, and all of them patriotic Americans.

    If you can’t show more than handful of problematic lessons from the more than 1,000 offered — and you’ve shown exactly zero — you should back off and rethink what you’re doing.

    In the 1950s we had lots of people, claiming to be anti-communists, attacking American institutions and thereby covering for communist infiltrators in other fields. Some of those people honestly thought they were standing up for America, as they carried out subversive plans.

    I ask you to think about what you’re doing — and if you can’t make a case to convince an old Reaganite like me, maybe your case is wrong.

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