Today I’m linking a post from SpunkyHomeSchool. She does a great job writing about Common Core and the ramifications of the program that the mainstream media isn’t reporting. If you don’t follow her, and this issue is important to you, you should definitely bookmark her site. This post talks a little bit about the way they have been creating the common core system behind the scenes, and it is definitely bigger than just K-12 standards http://spunkyhomeschool.blogspot.com/2013/05/four-components-of-national-education.html:
As I’ve been speaking about the common core it has become clear that people know a little bit about some of it but few understand how all the pieces fit together. This post is by no mean comprehensive but it puts all four of the key components of education reform together and will hopefully help parents understand why this not just the Common Core but the entire reform is a problem.
There are four components to the “defacto” national education that together comprise the P-20 centralized system. Common Core and the push for national standards is as much an economic reform as it is an education reform. Anyone educated outside the P-20 system is at a disadvantage in college and career advancement.
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder said in 2011, “ It is time that we view our educational system which runs from pre-natal to lifelong learning. It’s time to start talking about P-20 instead of just K-12. We need to establish a system that focuses on real achievement for all of our children.”
1. Standards: These are the Common Core (math and ELA) along with Next Generation Science and C3 Social studies. Common Core has already been adopted by 45 states and the other two standards are being considered in many states right now.
2. Assessments: These are the tests to go with the new standards. What is tested is what is taught. What is taught is what is thought. Currently there are two assessments being implemented in 44 states. Smarter Balanced and PARCC. Combined these will eventually become a national test to be given to all students. SBA tests are computer adaptive. Which means that questions become easier for those that miss a question and harder for those that get it right. So that begins the tracking and filtering of kids toward a certain career based on testing.
3. Curricula: What is tested must be practiced 100 times. That’s a paraphrase of David Coleman’s statement. Coleman was chief architect of the Common Core and now is head of the College Board which runs the AP and the SAT test. Curricula is being developed to go along with the tests. And the AP and SAT along with ACT are all being aligned to the tests. curricula will follow. Pearson who wrote the science standards and the assessments is already developing much of it.
4. Data Tracking: This is the place where the teacher and student data is stored. Yes, data mining is a concern. But not the only one. Those outside the database will be at a disadvantage in college admission and employment. There curriculum will be challenged as not as rigorous to the high national standards and the curricula developed to those standards. Teachers will be “graded” and tracked on well they teach the new standards, insuring that they don’t deviate too greatly from the script. Students will be graded and tracked on well they learn the new standards. All leading toward a centralized data system that crosses state lines and leads to a portable credential accepted by employers and colleges. Already many colleges are using a “Common Application” that is ONE application for over 400 colleges. A “valid” e-transcript is the ticket to travel to the next destination after high school. The only way to get a ticket to ride the P-20 system is to participate in their system. The data tracking includes over 400 unique identifiers that are not just academic. Any guesses where a Christian homeschooler might be placed on such a measure?
Common standards + Common tests + Common curricula + Common data tracking = P – 20 seamless educational system.
These four components outline a European-style national education system here in the US. This is where homeschooled and private schooled who do not complete coursework not aligned with Common Core and are not “tracked” could potentially encounter problems.
Six students in a private Christian school were denied admission into college because some of their coursework (A Beka and Bob Jones) was not acceptable by the University of California system. They lost their court battle.
But even those with children in the public school will be penalized if they hold certain beliefs.
Consider the response to the just released Next Generation Science Standards by Richard Hull, executive director of the Text and Academic Authors Association,
“Students who are educated in accordance with them will have a better chance for success in college courses and in competition on the employment market than those steeped in creationism design, new earth theory, and other alternative accounts.”
How much more clear can it be that this is about conformity of thought and not high academic standards?
The scary thing about this is how much was already done and being put into place before the public even became aware of it. Through her blog, along with other blogs out there (Diane Ravitch’s blog is another good source: http://dianeravitch.net/category/common-core/ ) you can see how they are lying to parents across the nation. The system is being set up to accelerate you or slow you down depending on how you test throughout k-12. You will be moved into courses based on your scores and evaluations. They say it is so they can tailor the education to the student. The truth is, they are evaluating students throughout their lives and then choosing their path for them, whether the parent and student like it or not. And all of this is trying to be extended to the college level as well.
The College Board is recommending people use the new universal electronic application. Not really a surprise considering the man that wrote the Common Core standards went on to be the head of the College Board and is now transforming the SAT and AP tests to align with it. Not only will they control K-12 education but they will control the gate to higher education as well. All of the tests, all of the database information collected on the child will be used for the application. It will select where the child should go to college, limiting the choices to what the program thinks the child will excel at.
He is also trying to get colleges to specialize, to drop the more general liberal arts programs in favor of more focused programs. Basically, they want to kill off anything that teaches someone to think and reason for themselves in favor of “more useful” programs that simply give them the information and skills to perform a chosen profession. This makes it easier to shunt kids into one program or another since studies will no longer be broad and overarching. “No, you can’t handle that program. All of our testing shows you would be better here.” It sounds like a helpful suggestion but it will become an order. They really are developing a cradle to career system here.
On the other end they are trying to get employers on-board with using cumulative school assessments in their hiring process. And if you aren’t a part of their system, you will be punished for it. The quote at the end of the article above should be enough to chill anyone: “Students who are educated in accordance with them will have a better chance for success in college courses and in competition on the employment market than those steeped in creationism design, new earth theory, and other alternative accounts.” Think the way we want you to, or else.
For now parents will be allowed to continue to educate their children at home, teaching them what is important to them (i.e. the truth) and we will continue to have Universities like Liberty, Grove City, and even Hillsdale that we can count on to not fold to this pressure and follow the herd. So we will, for a while anyway, be able to continue to give our children a quality education and then have reputable choices for them to continue that education at higher levels. But how long until those choices are taken away? Eventually colleges that don’t follow the popular model will lose their accreditation. Not long after that a law will be passed stating that no school can operate unaccredited. Homeschoolers will lose the right to educate their own children as well. It’s already illegal in 28 countries and so restrictive as to be almost impossible in 9 more. This doesn’t count the countries like Kenya where it is now in jeopardy and Spain where it is legal according to the constitution but illegal according to education law.
Plus, if they have their way, they will make it impossible to find a job without a public education. That leaves you with a very arduous existence if you try to live outside of their system. It doesn’t take much an imagination to see how this plays out. You either go along or you get pushed out.
I’ve talked to people who think this is just the latest fad in “how to fix the failing educational system”. They think it won’t pan out and will be forgotten in a couple of years. I don’t think it is about that at all. It’s about control. They’ve given up trying to appeal to adults and are instead attempting to control the future through children. Get them when they are young and can’t think for themselves and train them to be what you want them to be. This plan is completely evil and it needs to be stopped.