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“QUEEN of EDUCATION MISINFORMATION”

I really needed to check in here. What an absolutely crazy holiday season this was for our family. We made a long deserved trip to New Hampshire to visit our twins and their families over Thanksgiving and we got to meet that absolutely adorable new great-grandson. When you love children like I do, the re-generation of birth seems even sweeter.

Early in December our oldest grandson got married to the sweetest girl and believe me, anyone who is an only child and can fit into this very large family is a keeper. The wedding was outside and this lady got one heck of another sinus infection and I was down for the count.

This article is not mine but Lynne M. Taylor’s and was published in “The Patriot Institute” recently. Since she was putting my thoughts, research, and feelings so well into words, I decided not to re-create the wheel and let you enjoy this.

The “QUEEN” of course is Betsy DeVos, Secretary of EducationDumb DeVos

“Queen of Education Misinformation”
An open letter to U.S. Secretary of Education DeVos concerning her most recent speech by Lynne M. Taylor

Dear Mrs. DeVos,

America sure is a great country, isn’t it? We, the People, would like to keep it that way, too. However, some of the Patriots, aka hard-working, loyal, taxpaying, and concerned citizen-activists, have noticed you are misinforming us.

This is unacceptable, Madame. Below, are our observations.

1) You spoke to the AEI (American Enterprise Institution). While you did speak of the longevity for AEI’s policy work, you left out another fact.  AEI is in the pocket of Bill Gates, one of the most well-known financial supporters for Common Core.

Your words via evidence shown on the U.S. Dept. of Education’s ‘Speeches’ page, “It’s an honor to be with all of you at an organization I have long appreciated. AEI is now in its 80th year and in that near century, the Institute’s scholars have influenced and shaped the way Americans think about so many issues in the public square. AEI has been – and will continue to be – a treasured constant in this town of transition.”

Patriots’ Evidence shows the AEI and Gates connection. From the Washington Post and featuring research from an anti-Common Core activist, Mercedes K. Schneider’s book“Common Core Dilemma: Who Owns Our Schools?”

2) The banner behind you, Mrs. DeVos. What were you thinking?! Do you assume Americans, especially, Patriot-minded Americans couldn’t see the ‘forest for the trees’?  This banner alone is a billboard of Common Core from shore to shore! What’s more is that every one of these groups will continue to work with the U.S. Dept. of Education to continue ruining learning for millions!

DeVos AEI

Patriot evidence to show the ties between the 6 organizations above:
a) Council of Great City Schools (CGCS) is a part of the CEC (Consortium for Educational Change) and is ‘knee-deep’ in Common Core/Bill Gates. While we’re on “Council of Great City Schools”, let’s also share that Males of Color is a part of CGCS(*Note: While visiting the CGCS’s Males of Color page, look to your right and see the ‘quick links’. Notice the “Common Core of Data”. This is a direct sign of what Common Core is truly about: data mining for educational alignment!) The red highlighted link will take you to the anti -Common Core blog, ‘Crucial Voice of the People’.

b) Houghton Mifflin-Harcourt (HMH) is a huge supporter of not only Common Core, but, Career Tech Ed (the adult version of Common Core) as well as UNESCO ideology which embeds STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and, Math)!

c) Curriculum Associates (CA) is the group behind iReady. You’ll find CA in not only public schools but every other school choice out there. Common Core is woven into iReady. Because iReady is used by home educators, private schools, and all the other choices out there, NO classroom or home is immune to Common Core!

d) Gaggle, from their own files, has a Common Core Alignment statement.

e) Public Consulting Grouppartners with well-known Common Core supportive corporations like Pearson Publishing and WestEdPearson and WestEd are also huge into the data mining portion of education alignment.

Mrs. DeVos, we wish to address your bold statement below:

“Then, rightly, came the public backlash to federally imposed tests and the Common Core. I agree – and have always agreed – with President Trump on this: “Common Core is a disaster.” And at the U.S. Department of Education, Common Core is dead.”

a) If you truly wish to propel a bold image of Common Core being dead in your Department (which by the way, is funded by We, the People), don’t use banners as seen above.

b) While almost no taxpayer Patriot was in the room when Sen. Lamar Alexander uttered a phrase eerily similar to “Common Core is dead” after the passage of ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act), it appears you were. Alexander has been misleading the nation where education is concerned since his days as U.S. Secretary of Education. We, Patriots, know this is not the first time you have mislead the nation on Common Core’s lifespan, though, Mrs. DeVos. From July 2017“…citing ESSA, DeVos said, “There really isn’t any Common Core anymore,” adding the federal law “does away with the whole argument about Common Core.” (*Note: when you click on the red embedded link above, you’ll also see some of Sen. Alexander’s hype.)

Sadly, Mrs. DeVos, there are several other errors you propelled into the national spotlight about ESSA. There is so many a book could be written on the subject. We, the People will not stand to see our tax dollars and children abused by your leadership. So, we’ll not write the book and focus on protecting our kids from poor leaders like you.

In the future, Mrs. DeVos, please make sure you double check your facts before addressing the US on education. We would hope someone in D.C. would halt the continued illegally based federal overreach into our families. To our dismay, you are not the leader we are seeking.

Sincerely,
Concerned Patriots of the United States

Education Monster 3

I hope you found Lynne’s letter to the point and that she expressed your feelings also – she certainly did mine. It is time get the “Education Monsters” out of our classrooms and go back to good education.

It looks like the only way we can even have half a chance to get this done is at the polls in November 2018. Forget the political parties and search for those who place your children as being more important than a political party or the money they might generate into the coffers.

We need to elect people who think and feel as we do and the work is on our shoulders. Our current elected legislators, whether they are local or federal, have done our children not one favor and have continued to lie every step of the way.

Your last chance may be Homeschool Consortiums, rein in the teachers who no longer can stand teaching this junk and give your children what they deserve.

Our founders supported the belief that parents should educate their children.  Some people see education as a cure-all for society’s ills, however, education in and of itself does nothing to combat liars and thieves pushing education legislation when they themselves know nothing about education – nor do they really care. This is another power and control mechanism.

Millions have gotten rich off the backs of our children’s rotten education embraced by lies and manipulation. Time to put a stop to it for the sake of our children’s futures.

Make no mistake, everything propelling from D.C. in regard to education began its start at the United Nations and is all focused on our children fullfilling “their” Agenda 2030 aims.

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Teachers/Unions/Hillary Clinton/Immigrants!

Editors Note:  I apologize for not posting regularly as of late as I have had some health issues to deal with. Hope to be in full swing soon!Penny For Thoughts

I regularly watch this video by former NEA General Counsel Bob Chanin to remind myself that the teacher’s unions and some progressive teachers main concern is not about the children – but to the money and power they have been led to believe is their right. The day I discovered this video I watched and re-watched it multiple times because I couldn’t believe what I had heard.

This past fall, the 3+ million member National Education Assoc. (NEA) endorsed Hillary for President as did the American Federation of Teachers. To remind the readers, initially both of these unions endorsed the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and PARCC receiving donations from the main funder of the CCSS Bill Gates.

Now both the AFT and NEA officers have recently called for a moratorium in implementing CCSS and PARCC, reversing their initial support. Typical of those who hold power that is seldom checked, national officials have not explained their about-face as being correction of an error on their part. Nor do the “powers to be” normally speak to the teachers before making these endorsements – it is always based around $$.

If you got your information about the CCSS or PARCC from the NY Times, the unions or other biased media, I am sure you are confused as to why so many parents and teachers are angry – not to mention the teachers leaving the profession early.

The danger surrounding the CCSS and the way it is pushing academic’s to kindergarten which is age “inappropriate” or how it marginalizes the experience of literature and the arts or undercuts a teachers ability to present to her students with alternatives to give her students the best education.

Good teachers know that what they are pushing on the PreK – K children is very age inappropriate and in the long run will cause frustration and even cause an objection to learning.

Hillary Clinton has always supported Charter/Choice following the wishes of the progressive New World Order. Most teachers have been against both and to include Vouchers knowing the problems that comes with those agendas.

Hillary’s agreement with the Unions for their support was that she would reverse her support of Vouchers stating “I am opposed to the voucher schemes which diverts resources away from the public schools to the private schools that are not subject to the same accountability.”

Hasn’t that been the way vouchers have always worked even when Hillary supported them?

Just so you are aware, Hillary is also in favor of “Community Education” stating back in 1998 during her husband’s second term “The president believes as I do, that Charter schools are a way of bringing teachers and parents and communities together.” If people like the Clinton’s support Charter and Community schools, you know it is not a good system for the children.

Now our teachers have the added burden of dealing with illegal immigrants and refugees who don’t speak English and have no respect for a system that is handing everything to them for free. Add in the additional cost of teachers who speak their language and now it is not just Spanish, but many others also. No programs written in their language and we just keep pouring out the money and the teacher’s unions and Hillary Clinton could care less about our children.

The following is a blog written by a California teacher and worth passing on!

Carly Laying Down Reading

“As you listen to the news about the student protests over illegal immigration, there are some things that you should be aware of:  I am in charge of the English-as-a-second-language department at a large Southern California high school which is designated a Title 1 school meaning that its students average lower socioeconomic and income levels.

Most of the schools you are hearing about, South Gate High, Bell Gardens, Huntington Park , etc., where these students are protesting, are also Title 1 schools.

Title 1 schools are on the free breakfast and free lunch program.. When I say free breakfast, I’m not talking a glass of milk and a roll — but a full breakfast and cereal bar with fruits and juices that would make the Marriott proud. The waste of this food is monumental, with trays and trays of it being dumped in the trash uneaten.      (OUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK!)

I estimate that well over 50% of these students are obese or at least moderately overweight. About 75% or more DO have cell phones. The school also provides day care centers for the unwed teenage pregnant girls (some as young as 13) so they can attend class without the inconvenience of having to arrange for babysitters or having family watch their kids.

(MORE OF OUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK!)

I was ordered to spend $700,000 on my department or risk losing funding for the upcoming year even though there was little need for anything; my budget was already substantial. I ended up buying new computers for the computer learning center, half of which, one month later, have been carved with graffiti by the appreciative students who obviously feel humbled and grateful to have a free education in America. (MORE AND MORE OF OUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK!)

I have had to intervene several times for young substitute teachers whose classes consist of many illegal immigrant students here in the country less than 3 months who raised so much hell with the female teachers, calling them putas (whores ) and throwing things, that the teachers were in tears.

Free medical, free education, free food, free day care, etc., etc., etc.  Is it any wonder they feel entitled not only to be in this country but to demand rights, privileges and entitlements?

To those who want to point out how much these illegal immigrants contribute to our society because they LIKE their gardener and housekeeper and they like to pay less for tomatoes: spend some time in the real world of illegal immigration and see the TRUE costs.

Higher insurance, medical facilities closing, higher medical costs, more crime, lower standards of education in our schools, overcrowding, new diseases etc., etc., etc.

For me, I’ll pay more for tomatoes.

Americans, We need to wake up. The guest worker program will be a disaster because we won’t have the guts to enforce it. Does anyone in their right mind really think they will voluntarily leave and return?

It does, however, have everything to do with culture: A third-world culture that does not value education that accepts children getting pregnant and dropping out of school by 15, and that refuses to assimilate, and an American culture that has become so weak and worried about “political correctness” that we don’t have the will to do anything about it.

If this makes your blood boil, as it did mine, forward this to everyone you know including your Congressman and Senators.

CHEAP LABOR? ISN’T THAT WHAT THE WHOLE IMMIGRATION ISSUE IS ABOUT? BUSINESS DOESN’T WANT TO PAY A DECENT WAGE. CONSUMERS DON’T WANT EXPENSIVE PRODUCE. GOVERNMENT WILL TELL YOU AMERICANS DON’T WANT THE JOBS.

But the bottom line is cheap labor. The phrase “cheap labor” is a myth, a farce, and a lie. There is no such thing as “cheap labor.”

Take, for example, an illegal alien with a wife and five children. He takes a job for $5.00 or $6.00/hour. At that wage, with six dependents, he pays no income tax, yet at the end of the year, if he files an Income Tax Return, he gets an “earned income credit” of up to $3,200 free.

ALSO….

HE QUALIFIES FOR SECTION 8 HOUSING AND SUBSIDIZED RENT. HE QUALIFIES FOR FOOD STAMPS. HE QUALIFIES FOR FREE (NO DEDUCTIBLE), NO CO-PAY) HEALTH CARE. HIS CHILDREN GET FREE BREAKFASTS AND LUNCHES AT SCHOOL. HE REQUIRES BILINGUAL TEACHERS AND BOOKS. HE QUALIFIES FOR RELIEF FROM HIGH ENERGY BILLS. IF THEY ARE OR BECOME AGED, BLIND OR DISABLED, THEY QUALIFY FOR SSI. ONCE QUALIFIED FOR SSI THEY CAN QUALIFY FOR MEDICARE. ALL OF THIS IS AT TAXPAYER’S (OUR) EXPENSE. HE DOESN’T WORRY ABOUT CAR INSURANCE, LIFE INSURANCE, OR HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE. TAXPAYERS PROVIDE SPANISH LANGUAGE SIGNS, BULLETINS AND PRINTED MATERIAL. HE AND HIS FAMILY RECEIVE THE EQUIVALENT OF $20.00 TO $30.00/HOUR IN BENEFITS. WORKING AMERICANS ARE LUCKY TO HAVE $5.00 OR $6.00/HOUR LEFT AFTER PAYING THEIR BILLS AND HIS.

THE AMERICAN TAXPAYERS ALSO PAY FOR INCREASED CRIME, GRAFFITI AND TRASH CLEAN-UP.  CHEAP LABOR?  YEAH RIGHT!  WAKE UP PEOPLE!

THESE ARE THE QUESTIONS WE SHOULD HAVE BEEN ADDRESSED TO THE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES FOR EITHER PARTY.  AND WHEN THEY LIE TO US AND DON’T DO AS THEY SAY, WE SHOULD REPLACE THEM AT ONCE!

THIS HAS GOT TO BE PASSED ALONG TO AS MANY AS POSSIBLE OR WE WILL ALL GO DOWN THE DRAIN BECAUSE A FEW DON’T CARE.

And if you think this is bad just wait until Hillary becomes presidentess and the redistribution of wealth becomes the norm in this ex-democracy.

THIS WILL BE PASSED ON ONLY BY AMERICANS WHO TRULY CARE!

 

 

 

 

 

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Florida Using Undisbursed RTTT Funds To Settle Lawsuit!

Race To the Trough Well, well, well! Now the truth is going to come out! People of Florida have been led to believe that the State as a whole, could not opt out of Common Core Standards because FL had taken the money from the RTTT grant and it had been disbursed to the school districts. Our legislators lied to us!

Well – that is a truth and it is a lie! How can it be both? Because the 6 school districts that did get awarded funds from the Phase 2 grant which we found out was a drop in the bucket of that $700M dollars. What do I mean? I mean in the State of Florida’s report to the Federal DOE 2011-2012 (Florida Report Year 2: School Year 2011– 2012) clearly states they retained 98% of the funds because they knew the individual school districts did not have the funds to pay for this “boondoggle.” That would mean they held back somewhere in the neighborhood of $686M. Under “challenge’s” in the report “Although FDOE struggled with executing contracts in Year 1 and early Year 2, the focus is now on ensuring that the contractors are producing high quality “deliverable’s”. This is particularly important in Florida as 98 percent of the State’s portion of Race to the Top funds is budgeted for contracts. It is going nowhere near the school districts!

Now we find out the state, more accurately the Florida DOE and it’s Commissioner have been sued and are going to pay what they owe in that loss they are going to use the RTTT funds to do so. How can they do this? Because Bennett ask the brand new Department of Education Communications Director Joe Follick, (4-15-2013) if they could use that money and Follick in speaking for the state Department of Education, said the agency has determined that using the grant money for the settlement is allowed and Follick has refused to elaborate.

So who determined this is ok? The State’s legal eagle George Levesque? Another legal entity? Governor Scott? The state’s CFO? Maybe the FL State School Board who seems to have taken it upon themselves to approve the hiring of “throw-away Bennett” and approving the implementation of the Common Core Standards!

TIME FLORIDA STARTED ELECTING ITS COMMISSIONER OF EDUCATION AND THE MEMBERS OF THE STATE SCHOOL BOARD!
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Florida Using Federal Money To Settle Suit Over Website By GARY FINEOUT THE AP Thursday, May 23, 2013

TALLAHASSEE | Florida is dipping into federal grant money that was supposed to help improve the state’s schools in order to settle a bitter contract dispute. Education Commissioner Tony Bennett earlier this month agreed to settle a lawsuit filed against his department by a Tallahassee-based technology company.

The Department of Education is paying $1.25 million to Infinity Software Development. Infinity was hired to build a website intended to help students, parents and teachers master new academic standards.

But the deal ended acrimoniously with Infinity suing the state and the state terminating the contract. The money to build the website came from Florida’s $700 million Race to the Top federal grant, aimed at helping improve student achievement in the state. Before the contract was terminated, the state had already spent nearly $2.5 million on the project.

Joe Follick, a spokesman for the state Department of Education, said the agency has determined that using the grant money for the settlement is allowed. Follick refused on Thursday to elaborate. An Internet news operation, the Florida Current, reported Thursday the settlement had been approved.

The settlement not only includes a payment to Infinity — it also calls for the removal of the company’s name from a vendor complaint list maintained by the state. The president of Infinity did not return an email request for comment.

Florida’s effort to create the website as part of its education reforms dates back more than two years.

In early 2011, the state initially chose Microsoft to design and build the website. Infinity, however, challenged the contract by contending Microsoft should have been disqualified because the software company was unwilling to hand over ownership of the equipment and software to the state.
The state agreed to hire Infinity in July 2011, but it took until December of that year to sign a final contract. Emails obtained by The Associated Press showed that one point of disagreement was who should manage the contract.

Those emails showed that Steve MacNamara, then chief of staff for Gov. Rick Scott, was involved in a push to give the governor’s office the ability to resolve any disputes related to the contract.

Then-Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson in November 2011 wrote directly to MacNamara to protest “your desire to have another party manage the contract.” MacNamara told the AP last year that while Scott and Robinson met once to discuss the contract, he was “not involved in the negotiations” and left all discussions to his deputy chief of staff.

Months after the contract was finally signed, both sides were at an impasse. Florida officials complained that Infinity was behind schedule and had turned unacceptable lessons and tests in areas such as math, civics and biology. (Supposedly only math and ELA are supposed to be put into the schools at this time! krd)

Infinity in its lawsuit contended the delay in awarding the contract shortened the time to get the work done by 10 months and required the state to meet tight timelines to keep the project on schedule. Infinity officials maintained the department did not review the work in a timely fashion or failed to sign off on work done by the company. Infinity in September warned state officials about the problems and asked for at least $3.23 million to cover completed work. The letter stated that if lost profits were included, the total due Infinity was $4.5 million.

The bitter dispute leaves in limbo the fate of the Web-based system that was intended to provide practice lessons and tests for the standards that will be phased in for math, English, science and civics. The department said last year it would rebid the contract.

NOW – Education Commissioner Tony Bennett is mulling a reorganization of the state Department of Education http://www.news4jax.com/news/commissioner-may-reorganize-dept-of-education/-/475880/20243938/-/caacwd/-/index.html

I often wonder how much people really know about the members of the Florida State Board of Education. This group is not elected nor are they Educators yet they make decisions about policy that affect students and teachers in the state. They have the ability to “pull the trigger” and raise requirements or lower them as they see fit. This group also selects the education commissioner.

This group has pushed the diversion of more and more money away from regular public schools towards charters, virtual schools, private schools and testing companies. Why are the district superintendents (most of whom received no RTTT funds) and the district school boards supporting Common Core? Something is extremely strange about this whole thing!

How About A Quick Peek At 3 Of Our State School Board Members!

Kathleen Shanahan: Kathleen is the CEO of URETEK. The FLDOE website says she has a distinguished career in many fields (not education). She is a prominent Florida businesswoman with a long and distinguished background in politics and public service. She has held federal and state public policy positions of chief of staff for Fl. Governor Jeb Bush, chief of staff to Vice President-elect Dick Cheney, deputy secretary of the California Trade and Commerce Agency, special assistant to then Vice President George Bush, and staff assistant on President Reagan’s National Security Council. Ms. Shanahan currently is a board member of the Florida Council of 100, executive committee member of the Republican National Convention 2012, a fund-raiser for the Jeb Bush Foundation for Excellence in Education as well as being one of his “REFORMERS”.

Sally Bradshaw: worked for Gov. Haley Barbour and was an advisor to the Romney campaign in 2008. She served as a political advisor to G. H. Bush and was also a chief of staff to Jeb Bush.

Gary Chartrand: He is on the board of the Jacksonville Public Education Fund and a director on the board of the KIPP schools in Jacksonville, FL. (Charter consortium) He is also NOT an educator!

Is there a particular reason why the Florida State Board of Education has NO EDUCATORS serving on the board?

The mantra of this cabal has been to divert more money away from regular public schools and triple down on testing. The coming quadruple down with Common Core cements the shameful legacy of this group of dilettantes.

Additionally in the same report “RTTT Florida Report 2011-2012” emphasizes their 2014-2015 Charter School Plan “Florida is committed to supporting charter schools through its Race to the Top efforts. As such, the State has provided funding to encourage charter management organizations and charter operators to open 30 to 40 new charter schools across the State and provided additional funding to support a program for the development of
turnaround principals in charter schools, educator evaluations in charter schools, and CCSS and LIIS implementation in charter schools. Identified under Race to the Top and the School Improvement Grant as PLA, priority schools identified as part of the State’s approved Elementary and Secondary Education (ESEA) flexibility requests!”

“Florida is working with 17 charter school participants to provide training to aspiring turnaround principals. This work is being done in conjunction with the turnaround principal work (see Turning Around the Lowest-Achieving Schools). FDOE is in the early stages of its work with a vendor to provide training on educator evaluations in charter schools and is currently reviewing proposals from contractors to provide training on CCSS and LIIS implementation in charter schools.”

So if I read this correctly, Florida is using their RTTT funds to also pay individuals to train people to run Charter schools! Would we suppose they are part of the many Charter School Consortium’s also pushed by Jeb Bush?

You need to be asking the questions: “Why the big push for Charter Schools if all the schools in the end are going to have to go along with the Common Core Standards and the students to be robots?

Because – simply put – Charter Schools are part of the plan for the take-over of the Education system by the government! Never, ever forget the bottom line to Charter Schools – they use taxpayer funds and they are unelected boards which leaves Parents and taxpayers out the equation – you have no rights!

Now Florida Legislators and Powers To Be! Let’s be honest – just who are you working for? The children and teacher’s of Florida or those businesses and lobbyists who are packing your election coffers full as long as you “dance” to their “tune?”

Other Common Core States – you need to check out exactly what is happening in your states!

Stated in the report is what will be affected if we do not comply – section 80.43: http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr&SID=086932763f55a79ee96960031ae55099&rgn=div5&view=text&node=34:1.1.1.1.26&idno=34#34:1.1.1.1.26.1.129.4

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Public/Private Education In A State Near Your!

by MISSOURI EDUCATION WATCHDOG Aug 4, 2012

Remember when everyone was all upset that the new Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was going to require people to purchase something just to be considered a citizen in good standing?  But then the Supreme Court reassured us that it wasn’t a criminal matter if we didn’t purchase health insurance, because it was just a tax.  Citizens would just be fined. However,  the IRS has been named as the enforcement agency for the healthcare bill, and according to section 7201 of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC), it is a federal crime for anyone to willfully attempt to evade or defeat the payment of federal taxes. The IRS has the authority to incarcerate anyone found guilty of tax evasion. So how is it an honest statement that failure to comply with the terms of the PPACA will not result in criminal incarceration?

Why am I talking about health care in an education blog?  PPACA, like Freddie Mac and Sallie Mae sets up a hybrid public/private entity which ties people to government while enriching private businesses. If you want a home, your mortgage is ultimately going to be owned by the government through Freddie Mac. If you want a student loan, the pressure has been applied to send you into the arms of government supplied student loans (which are a great investment for Uncle Sam since they can never be forgiven.) The government is forcing you into a businesses relationship with private insurers with PPACA. They have already stated that their end goal is a single payer system, but those private insurers know that the government will contract with them to manage that system so they will end up with guaranteed business no matter what.  The reason this topic is here is because they are setting up the same scenario in education.

Stephanie Simon of Reuters attended a gathering of investors in Manhattan, and the business sector they were looking to invest in is education. The conference was billed as a how-to on “private equity investing in for-profit education companies,” and was attended by about 100 hedge fund managers, venture capitalists, and education vendors.

“You start to see entire ecosystems of investment opportunity lining up,” said Lytle, a partner at The Parthenon Group, a Boston consulting firm. “It could get really, really big.”

…The entire education sector, including college and mid-career training, represents nearly 9 percent of U.S. gross domestic product, more than the energy or technology sectors.

…Traditionally, public education has been a tough market for private firms to break into — fraught with politics, tangled in bureaucracy and fragmented into tens of thousands of individual schools and school districts from coast to coast.

Now investors are signaling optimism that a golden moment has arrived. They’re pouring private equity and venture capital into scores of companies that aim to profit by taking over broad swaths of public education.

And government is pushing for them to be able to do that. From education reform advocates pushing for the expansion of charter schools, to Teach For America creating its own shorthand education degree course collecting money both from government and students to pay for their business, to the coming explosion of on-line learning, there are so many profit avenues into public education.

The goal: an education revolution in which public schools outsource to private vendors such critical tasks as teaching math, educating disabled students, even writing report cards, said Michael Moe, the founder of GSV ( an investment firm in Chicago that specializes in education.)

Back to the question of why talk about the health care situation in an education blog. Just like you are required now by the government to purchase something from a private company for health, you will be required to pay a private business (through your taxes if not directly) to comply with the government mandate that your child be educated.  You must send your child to school. Homeschool parents know this all too well as many of them are harassed by school officials and local police for being unfit parents who fail to do the right thing and send their kids to public school. Unless you are strong enough to do the work of educating your child yourself and put up with push back like this, you have no choice but to send your child to public school. Now that the job of that  public school is being outsourced to private business, you are in essence required to participate in a private business contract not of your choosing.  If you don’t, and the PPACA is the legal precedent, you might be subject to incarceration.

I have no problem if a charter school wants to come in and try to do a better job educating children. But in the current environment of regulation, they will only be able to provide the regular public school education in a different building. I have no problem if a company wants to create educational modules to help teach a subject. But if the government is going to have the authority to either bless that method or not, regulating whether the module fulfills the governments requirements, then we will not have the free market operating.  We will have the continuation of government control over education and government selection of winners and losers in the private sector. We will have yet another pubic/private hybrid on our hands that is the worst of both worlds.


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ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL

Sadly, education today is not about the children. It is about control, for profit schools and the push for agenda’s that will not only affect the lives of our children for years, but help to bring about the ruination of America if we cannot turn it around.

As far back as the 1800’s, John Dewey, a strong Marxist, was implementing his ideas as to how education should be presented to our children and how. Today, we have our Secretary of Education, President and those on the left following Progressivism, Socialism or whatever you want to call it, implementing education programs under the guise of “making it better”; “improving our education system”; holding our teachers accountable and “better preparing our children for their futures”. 

Not so even your teachers will tell you!  I have no problem holding our teachers accountable to a point. How can you expect teachers to teach your children and gain success when they continue changing the rules of the game? They change the standards, curriculum’s and fail to include the teachers in the discussions or educate them in the “new” ways.

Around 1996 we would see political will began to focus around some key issue for education, specifically, what sort of student should emerge from a high school education.  Important to some, but few knew what was actually happening, large corporation heads began to become involved in education – people like Bill Gates and Louis Gerstner.  The formed Achieve, Inc. which was formed by the nation’s governors and business leaders as a bipartisan, non-profit organization to help states raise academic standards, improve assessments and strengthen accountability to prepare all young people for post-secondary education, work and citizenship.

This idea might have worked if they had not lowered the standards, changed how they were grading and continued to focus on the tests that were to be taken rather than the actual education of the children. This was the fore runner in Florida for the “No Child Left Behind” program and a total focus on the “FCAT”, Florida’s Comprehensive Assessment Tests. Teachers would spend more time teaching the children how to pass the FCAT for a particular year, rather than being able to focus on everything.  Accountable!  I think not!

Now they give us the “Common Core Standards” – written by David Coleman and Susan Pimentel (more about them in another posting).  There are two really important reasons why this program is not good.  They are not educators nor have they ever been.

One, there is no scope or sequence which is an important aspect of curriculum requirements. When a student is sitting in a classroom and going from one grade level to the next, it is vitally important that the curriculum requirements be tightly linked from one grade level to the next or else huge chasms will occur of which the child will fall into. In other words, if a student has not learned in one grade level how to use a preposition they will certainly not know in the next grade level not to put one at the end of a sentence. If they did not learn in one grade level what a participle is then certainly they will not know in the next grade level what a dangling participle is.

Unless the standards used increase the depth and complexity in a smooth transition from one grade to another, holes in the children’s cognitive progression will occur. These holes represent the lack of prior knowledge. It is the lack of prior knowledge that keeps students from proceeding successfully to the next concept. This is particularly true in the area of grammar and usage which are competency based. Some would say how this is important when they have fallen into a world of “texting”. Have you paid attention to the result of how your children and grandchildren talk as a result of a life of texting?

Two, another concern about the new standards is that they are only for Math and English. The emphasis on those subjects in No Child Left Behind’s assessment scheme led to a dangerous narrowing of curriculum in public schools; the arts disappeared in many systems, science and history and physical education took a back seat too. However, the test scores reveal our students are graduating without knowing how to read. In Florida, over 50% of our students are required to take remedial classes in their Freshman year of college.

I do not know about anyone else, but holding the teachers totally accountable for the progress of our children and the level of their ability does not seem quite fair to me when you have people who have never worked in education nor have they been trained in education, making changes and choices when they should stick to what they know best. 

There is much, much more to this story and it will continue – – –

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FLORIDA’S EDUCATION SYSTEM IS FAILING!

ImageEveryone across the country has a different way of evaluating the states on Education. Education Week’s magazine is the one school superintendents and school boards like to use because they always give them a high grade in Accountability and it is a big word and sounds important – but it is nothing. Accountability in this case means they are merely turning in their reports which measures student progress toward the following goals; highest student achievement, seamless articulation and maximum access, skilled workforce and economic development, and quality efficient services and they have turned their reports in a timely manner. Big deal! Their FCAT scores show there is no improvement to warrant an A rating. The powers to be would tell us the state ranks 4th in the country but in fact it was 10th, 8th & 9th for 2009, 2010 & 2011 respectfully – but in Accountability not QUALITY of Education provided.Florida Center for Fiscal and Economic Policy based in Tallahassee also has a problem with those A scores. In January 2010 they wrote the “Rankings Deserve A Closer Look.” The report states “the ranking does not mean that Florida’s K-12 schools are eighth best in the nation (2010) . . . the report evaluates selected Accountability and Performance Policies but does not in any manner constitute a definitive statement of quality or outcomes of a state’s education system.”  So what did that report really say about Florida’s public education?Florida enacted almost all the accountability and performance policies recommended by the current generation of “school reformers” (NCLB) earning that A grade and that is fine for as far as it goes. And this is not surprising since Florida’s school reform efforts since the early 1990’s has centered on the Sunshine State Standards, FCAT and various mechanisms like school grades designed to increase accountability.

The fact remains that other results documented in the assessment by Education Week in Florida’s latest ranking aren’t superlative. Three grades in the report make the case:

          Student achievement (scores on national standardized tests): D- minus

  • Funding per student (compared to the national average): F   Here I would like to add that I do not necessarily believe more money is the answer, but suggest the following:
    1. They should stop paying school board members so much money for so little time spent on the children’s futures and they certainly should not be entitled to pensions – in fact going back to volunteer school boards might not be a bad idea either – they still do that in most of the mid-west and north-east.
    2. We are spending far too much on administration – a report done earlier this year showed Florida #4 in the country for receiving Education funds (not ARRA or Title I) – but on the bottom of the charts in comparison as to the amount spent in ratio of admin to student.
    3. School boards have become too political – you hear more in a school board meeting about brick, motor and cement then you do the words children, students or kids. You are not given the opportunity to show disappointment or distain in how money is being spent nor do they seem to remember who is paying their salaries.
    4. Stop all International Curriculum Programs from being used in our schools. International Baccalaureate has cost this state BILLIONS of dollars since it was first introduced at Winter Park High School in 1983 by former Commissioner of Education Eric Smith.
    5. Insist on proper oversight of the textbooks and curriculum’s being used by the Charter Schools. They are allowed to choose what they want to use – UNESCO/UN curriculum’s should not be acceptable to anyone. School boards have learned Charter schools have made less work for them but they are not living up to their duties as the sponsor’s of the Charter schools according to Florida Education Statutes.
  • College Readiness:  F

The assessment also noted that Florida’s high school graduation rate is 45th in the nation and the state also ranks below the national average in the percentage of young adults with a degree or enrolled in college.

A very disturbing fact of the report to me was that more than half of the students graduating and entering into a 3 or 4 year college program in Florida require remedial classes in reading and math.

Former Governor Jeb Bush did our students no favors in implementing No Child Left Behind (NCLB), is a supporter of Race To The Top (RTTT), and a very strong Progressive. It was sad to learn but true. We are now left with the challenge to turn this around. The Common Core Standards (CCS), written by a man with no Education background and paid by Bill Gates, is geared to bring our scores down further. Teachers have not been properly instructed but yet are to be held “accountable” for the success or failure of their students. (I am not a teacher).

One of the main problems with the CCS is the fact there is no scope or sequence which is an important aspect of curriculum requirements. In other words, a student sitting in a classroom and going from one grade level to the next, it is vitally important that the curriculum requirements be tightly linked from one grade level to the next or else huge chasms will occur of which the child will fall into. In other words, if a student has not learned in one grade level how to use a preposition they certainly will not know in the next grade level not to put one at the end of a sentence. If they did not learn in one grade level what a participle is then certainly they will not know in the next grade level what a dangling participle is.

Unless the standards used increase the depth and complexity in a smooth transition from one grade to another, holes in the children’s cognitive progression will occur. These holes represent the lack of prior knowledge. It is the lack of prior knowledge that keeps students from proceeding successfully to the next concept. This is particularly true in the area of grammar and usage which are competency based. Some would say how this is important when they have fallen into a world of “texting”. Have you seen the result of how your children and grandchildren talk as a result of a life of texting?

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COMMON CORE STANDARDS: Open Your Wallet

Well today we got the good news about the estimate’s on the cost of the Common Core Standards.  I know you will remember I have told you that when the State played the “crap shoot” over implementing Race To The Top (RTTT) and the Common Core Standards (CCS), they were not told all the rules of the game.  Especially the expenses that they were going to incurred.  Or if they knew the costs, they were not sharing!

Now I know Florida played some games with the Education budget, shift here, shift there, take out some, put some back, mostly take out. Then we make a large announcement we are going to ADD $1B to the budget. Makes me laugh – what games they continue to play.

Well today the  Fordham Institute released a report estimating the costs of implementing the  new academic standards for Florida and other states across the nation. The report states the total costs of implementing the Common Core  Standards (CCS) could range from $3 billion to $12 billion, depending on how the individual states take on this challenge in the near future. For Florida, the costs could range from $182.9 million to $780 million.

I GUESS IT IS TIME TO DUMP INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE!  REALLY EXPENSIVE – let alone teaching our children Communism.

Again I remind you these standards were written by David Coleman, a non-educator who Bill Gates paid very well to do so.  Refer to my blog on David Coleman!  The man is telling us our children should be taught by a “value” system something that was actually tried back in 1965 when they first introduced the ESEA.

Is it no wonder our children all over the country have been Dumbed Down. They (the rich, powerful and non-educator’s) continue to tell us what our children should know and how they should learn it. Like no American History prior to 1865 – why you ask?  Because if you have no knowledge of the past you will have no allegiance to the future. In other words,  if our children have no knowledge of the Founding Fathers, the putting together of the Constitution and Declaration of Independence and the wars fought to protect the people within, they will have no love, admiration or understanding of what this country went through to get where we are today. They also need to learn how we are systematically ruining our country through greed, control and power.

Business will be as usual. Buying junk textbooks published by junk publishers who see nothing wrong in pushing Islam over our American History and Judeo/Christian beliefs.  still teaching to tests, and accountability placed in the wrong place.  All done while Arne Duncan has dinner and plays games with Jeb Bush talking about how the goals of ruination are in place pushing parents to put their children into Charter schools where there is even less oversight and most importantly of all, the eventual removal of school boards to oversee anything. The school boards may not be perfect but they are better than none!

The other push is the virtual classes which leaves the teachers free time or the kids using the Virtual classes at home with NO ONE WATCHING. That is the point guys – no one is to be watching.

Common Core is Bad and we still have time to opt out but no one in Tallahassee will listen because they are working behind the scenes with Jeb Bush and what Jeb Bush wants Jeb Bush gets. If you do not believe me, just wait until your children no longer learn to read, cannot write in cursive or  . . . . . . .

Again, I will remind you – the teacher can tell your child they are intelligent, but if they do not know what the word is, how to spell it, use it in a sentence or comprehend it – it will mean nothing to them!

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BATTLE LINES DRAWN IN COMMON CORE STANDARDS: Whole Language vs Phonics!

Cutting to the chase: The discredited whole language teaching method emphasizes “pre-reading strategies” because students who have not been taught phonemic awareness/decoding skills (phonics) cannot sound out words well enough to free up their brains to comprehend the text.  

To get around those inherent problems with whole language, the whole language proponents have come up with a strategy called “pre-reading” which often is so detailed and time consuming that the students know all about the story without ever having to sound out the words and actually read them.  

Now a big argument has erupted over the Common Core Standards between those who know it is crucial for students to achieve mastery in sounding out words to the automaticity level vs. those whole language proponents who rely upon their pre-reading strategies (i.e., meta cognitive strategies) that actually eliminate the need for students to be able to read the text.   

The empirical reading research done by NIH using MRI’s and cognitive reading instrumentation prove that good readers read almost every single word; therefore, good reading curriculum should require children to sound out individual phonemes,  and segment/blend them into words — that leads to sentences, that lead to paragraphs, that lead to entire texts. This is the part-to-the-whole concept that follows the way the brain develops in humans.   

The “reading wars” that are occurring over the Common Core Standards pit those who follow the cognitive brain research vs. those who practice whole language strategies, including time-consuming pre-reading methods that end up giving students a “crutch” so that they don’t feel as if they ever need to learn to sound out the words fluently, automatically, and correctly.   

In one kindergarten example, the teacher spends 20 minutes preparing children for a six-minute reading.

 By the time they actually read the book, “there wasn’t a single shred of an idea in there that the kids didn’t already know,” he said. “What they were learning was that reading [the text] wasn’t really necessary.”

 …”In too many classrooms, the actual text never enters the discussion,” he said. “It’s all about kids’ feelings about it, or their experiences related to it. The teacher spends 45 minutes wallowing in that space, but never gets into the information in the text.”

Common Standards Ignite Debate Over Pre-reading

By Catherine Gewertz

http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2012/04/25/29prereading_ep.h31.html

Vol. 31, Issue 29, Pages 1,22-23

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GERARD ROBINSON – Florida’s King of the Hill!

He might want to be very careful  about sitting on the top of a hill if he can remember what happened to Jack and Jill!

Florida continues to have an array of problems when it comes to education.  Mr. Robinson thinks his authority allows him to ignore the concerns and opinions of parents, local school boards and the State Board of Education. This is a follow up to what I sent the other day to show the arrogance of this man and it is time for him to tell the people of Florida just where he stands and what his objectives are. The problem with none of the legislature being educators is another issue.  We knew where their focus was when they played the Race To The Top game for “money” and our kids were the pawns. Parents urged them not to play and they again ignored us. Same thing is true about the Common Core Standards however,  Charlie Crist slipped that in on us.

At the recent meeting of the Florida School Board Association, Education Commissioner  Gerard Robinson  told the local school boards, they were to comply or else when it comes to the state’s main assessment, the FCAT. The Association presents representation from all 67 school districts in Florida and they have been working on a resolution opposing the high stakes testing as the main tool for student and teacher evaluation.  Did I understand that correctly to be a threat?

Robinson said of the local school boards, “They can express their opinion, but let’s also remember the local school board’s obligation is to implement the laws approved by the Florida Legislature; to implement the regulations approved by the state board.”

Did everyone understand what Robinson said?   He is telling parents that essentially they have only as much local control as your state legislature and the state school board gives to you. Actually he is telling you that you have no say at all in the education of your children. Maybe in addition to the FCAT problem and “one size fits all testing”, we should be taking a VERY hard look at who is making these decisions.

In 2009, then Senator Wise stated, “Florida has the largest school systems in America. They also have the largest schools in America.”  “The prime concern we have is about student performance. Research shows that there is no significant difference in student performance if the superintendent is elected versus being appointed.”

Wise also offered some insight on the issue from his years as an educator.  “I served under elected and appointed superintendents. “When you are elected the question is if the school board says they want this policy and if you are an elected superintendent, they can’t fire you. It creates an interesting confrontation between elected bodies.”

I disagree with Senator Wise and I am going to ask you to think about solutions.

Superintendents if elected are to serve the children, parent’s, taxpayers and the school board. If a school board does not have enough sense to have in their contract/agreement with that superintendent ways of removing them from office even to include a special election, than the school board needs to be replaced.

Superintendents appointed by a school board show that they only owe allegiance to the school board since they hired them. Here in my county you can see the cronyism at every school board meeting.  Our superintendent is more interested in bragging about how many chairmanships she has received from the committee’s/boards she has served on rather than produce an A/B district.  The reasons for failure are always someone else’s.

Commissioner Robinson stated, “If you take a look at where students have performed in math, reading, writing as well and other subjects, we’ve been moving in the right direction for over a decade.” Robinson said, “That didn’t happen overnight. That happened because we set accountability and assessments are in place.”

Is this the same man who in the past few months went to Jacksonville to look into the possibility of another KIPP Charter school opening when the one there had already failed? When questioned by a reporter as to why he would allow another Kipp school to open with the current one having failed, he stated, “Oh we don’t take that into consideration when approving new schools.”  Is this man smoking “wacky tobacky?” Just what guidelines are you using Commissioner?

Commissioner Robinson is one of Jeb Bush’s Chief’s for Change! Jeb Bush pushed No Child Left Behind on our children his whole time in office stating it was great, Florida was moving ahead and the whole time our children were suffering because of “teaching to a test” and yet, for the most part according to THEIR own FCAT scores, they were flat-lined. Now that Jeb Bush can focus on his Foundation for Excellence in Education he tells us the public schools are bad, our children are not learning and they are not ready for college and Charter Schools are the answer.  Well,  they would be with the right guidelines, oversight, decent curriculum’s and certified teachers. Jeb Bush’s foundation, Michelle Rhee’s group School Choice and all the consortium’s you see popping up are “for profit”.  Now I have nothing against a fellow American making money  from a legitimate enterprise, but when our children are the poker chips I draw the line.

I am not saying ALL Charter schools are bad, but the failure rate is astounding as are the amount of scandals appearing. Did all of you know the State of Florida gives all Charter school a $250K start-up grant if they apply for it?  When a Charter school closes down in the first year or soon after, who is responsible for all the debt they have accrued?  You? Me? All of US? What happens to all the furniture, school books and other supplies left behind. No one talks about those things.

Somewhere in this a complete disconnect!   One school board member characterized it this way, “for our Florida Department of Education not to be willing to listen to the concerns from parents, students and school board members all across the state of Florida – we have a problem. We have a communication problem, we have a messaging problem.”

I can tell you from personal experience from having gone to Tallahassee to discuss the problems in education, the gentleman from Gov. Scott’s office we had the meeting with agreed with us totally until we stated the problems with FCAT, accountability and Jeb Bush. We got cut off right at the knees!

They have more than a messaging problem. They have an ego and an economic problem. Jeb Bush has a lot of his personal political worth on the line with education reform in FL. BobsIdleMusings noted, “He cannot remain education reforms voice if he is being challenged by the state’s local school boards – many of them filled with republicans.”

Our state has a lot of problems in relationship to the cronyism that has developed in Tally.  There are the  economic problem because of all the ties in to Pearson who produces the FCAT and has the company’s future viability challenged if they do not have a lock on the standardized testing protocol in the state. Osceola County School Board member Jay Wheeler said the FCAT, started “with the best intentions,” has turned into a successful “business model for Pearson” — which earns millions from Florida — but not something meant “to help kids.” Where business and politics cross is dangerous territory.

Keep in mind everyone, Race To The Top, since our legislature has seen fit to play this Monopoly game, takes all control from our local school boards and makes all the decisions coming from Washington, D.C.

You see, that is the final goal! For the Federal government to have TOTAL control over our children’s education!

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STOP TRYING TO HURT OUR CHILDREN!

Gerber, Abbott Nutrition Labs, Mead Johnson, Walmart, Kellogg’s and the Federal Government are force-feeding genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to the most vulnerable among us: our children. This does not even address what is fed to our cows which ends up in the milk.

Nearly all of our infant formula, including every one of the millions of bottles distributed free by the government, contains genetically engineered corn or soy, as well as milk from cows injected by bovine growth hormone.

The FDA doesn’t conduct or even require a single safety study on GMOs. They allow Monsanto and other biotech companies to do their own safety tests. Keep in mind that the FDA also assured us that past products DDT, PCBs and Agent Orange were perfectly safe. This was before they were banned. Today, companies can put GMOs into baby bottles, sippy cups, and breakfast cereal, without even telling the FDA or consumers.

Because of their less-developed immune systems, infants and young children are more sensitive to toxins found in GMOs. And diseases linked to GMOs in animal-feeding studies are skyrocketing among America’s children. This can’t be a coincidence.

Children are More Vulnerable

-Infants and young children are more sensitive to toxins found in GMOs.

-Their immune system and blood brain barrier are not fully developed.

Again, diseases are skyrocketing among America’s children. Their disorders include the same ones identified in GMO animal feeding studies by the physicians group, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine.

Enough is enough. Tell the food companies ( Gerber, Abbott Nutrition, Mead Johnson and Walmart) and the government agencies ( California WIC) that they must stop companies from feeding our babies genetically modified infant formula and baby food and to stop using our kids as guinea pigs.

 

So What About the Vaccinations They Are Giving Our Children?

For decades, half of all childhood vaccines contained a chemical preservative called Thimerosal.

It is made from mercury, one of the most poisonous substances on Earth.!  Approximately 12 out of the 18 vaccine doses the average American child receives before the age of two contain Thimerosal. Cumulatively, that’s more than 200 micrograms of mercury, which would fit on the head of a pin.

According to the EPA, dropping that pin-head of mercury into 23 gallons of water would make it unsafe for human consumption. “Think about the idea of injecting your own child with levels of mercury that are thirty to forty times what’s considered safe for an adult,” Dallas attorney Andy Waters said. “And, I think if any human being thinks about that very long, they recognize that this is something that never should have happened.”

Before the 1990s, 1 in 10,000 children were diagnosed with autism. But in the past decade, as the government has increased the number of mandatory vaccines, some recent studies suggest the rate of autism has risen to 1 in about 250 children.

WHAT BETTER REASON TO HOME SCHOOL YOUR CHILDREN – NO VACCINATIONS!  COLLEGE ENTRANCE DOES NOT REQUIRE VACCINATIONS!

Are you willing to gamble with your child’s future?  Do your own research!