January 31, 2015 By Chris Quackenbush
Today I received the newest policy release from the Florida Association of District School Superintendents. To say that I was disappointed is an understatement. It pledges full support for Common Core by name. The new report advocates convoluted minor reforms to adjust to changes and declining student performance which they do not understand, or will not address.
Joy Frank is the General Counsel and writes their bills and opinions. We were directed to her by Senator Montford after Deirdre Clemons and I testified at the January 7th hearings in the Capitol. After two very short meetings, it became apparent that we were not on the same page on Common Core. After we presented our views and expert reports, Joy said her experts are telling her something else and dismissed it. We need another meeting, but I doubt that will help.
I went to their web site and discovered the likely reason for her intransigence.
When you partner with Pearson and the other corporate cronies who pay your way, it’s tough to embrace the truth, that Common Core FAILS.
We must expose this connection to our legislators to show their views and testimony are tainted and they must listen to real stakeholders, the parents, students and tax paying citizens of Florida. We should also address it in our districts with our elected school boards who must be largely unaware of this conflict of interest.
Then I went to the Florida School Boards Association web site to look at their “sponsors” and found pretty much the same benefactors, with Pearson high on the list. Both these organizations have expensive lobbyists, staff in the Capitol and access to our legislators through massive donations. They are the ones creating reports and testifying before legislative committees with an air of legitimacy, while empirical results from education experts, parents and lower student exam results have no merit in their narrative. By the way, we, as taxpayers, are paying for lobbyists for this association as well. It’s part of your school district’s budget.
Both these organizations are presenting a united front urging legislators not to “rock the boat” on Common Core. This is, indeed, a real story of David and Goliath. Our grassroots organizations must inform and energize the public or accept enslavement of our children by corporate elites who reap the benefit at the bank from High Stakes Testing and Common Core.
March 5th, we have an opportunity to March for the Children in Tallahassee and lock arms across the state and across political lines. Here are 4 interesting, short videos for your use:
March 5 event info: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1-notNA_hY&feature=youtu.be
High Stakes Testing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wGxTWTm9F8&feature=youtu.be