We Will Not Conform!
Glenn Beck’s movie, We Will Not Conform, is a must see for anyone who feels uncomfortable with the pat answers that you receive from Common Core proponents. Beck brought together about 20 experts who shared research based facts on Common Core rather than theoretical, carefully crafted sound bites. Those experts detailed reasons for the opposition that continues to mount like a steadily growing and unstoppable tsunami against this assault on education in America.
Many people have asked me questions about Common Core like: “What is it?” and, “Why is there so much opposition?” For those who have been reading the CCIA regularly you have a good idea of the answers, but I’ll provide a quick synopsis for new subscribers.
The Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCS) is a top down, Washington, DC originated total revamp of America’s education system. It negates the concept of local control because everything is driven – curriculum, tests, teaching methods – by the centrally created standards. Some have praised the standards themselves, although there has been at least an equal amount of opposition to them. In particular, critics feel that many of the standards for younger students are developmentally inappropriate.
It has never been tested, so no one knows if it will work – we’re risking the education of an entire generation on an experiment.
There is a data gathering component that amasses huge databases (cradle to grave) of information (some of the data is unrelated to education) about students and their families. The Obama Administration has loosened the rules protecting the data so that outside organizations and the federal government can gain access to individual data. This creates a treasure trove of “target marketing” information that can be used for political and commercial campaigns.
There has been no “official” detailed cost analysis. We don’t know how much it’s going to cost to complete the change or what the ongoing cost will be to maintain it.
The primary proponents have been leaders in the federal government who visualize centralized control of education and major corporations and individuals who stand to reap windfall profits.
It’s all neatly packaged as a significant upgrade in American education but the details, and the results to date, don’t offer substantiation for the claims.
Another thing observers can’t help but notice is the rush to get this implemented. Amid requests even from some key advocates to slow the process down, proponents have been rushing ahead at breakneck speed. Here in Florida, even though we don’t even have an assessment test written or approved, advocates are insisting that implementation and high stakes testing be completed by the end of the school year in 2015!
The opposition is growing at least in part because among these areas of concern everyone can find something to hate. Looking at recent polling data from the Rasmussen polling company leads to the conclusion that as people learn more about CCS, opposition grows. A poll taken in November, 2013 found that 52% of those who responded favored and 29 % opposed further implementation of CCS (19% were undecided). The same poll taken in late June, 2014 showed a 36% swing against CCS. While “undecided” stayed the same, those favoring further implementation dropped to 34% and those opposed rose to 47%.
There is an inference that can be reasonably drawn from this dramatic shift. It is that as national leaders like Glenn Beck and local moms like Becky, Emma Jane, Joanna, Nancy, and Nathalie educate the rest of us on the dangers of Common Core, the infatuation with it fades.
The most unfortunate aspect of this whole thing is that while it may benefit those who hunger for money and power, it has a significant potential to be harmful to our children!
By the time you read this there will have been several local Stop Common Core activities that will have taken place in late July. There is another coming up on August 12th. There’ll be more information about it in upcoming Email Bulletins.
If you don’t get the EBs now and would like to start, please email and let me know.