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CSCOPE …..6.1 MILLION UNACCOUNTED FOR… DOES YOUR LEGISLATOR CARE?

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In light of the Cscope Audit released by the Texas Attorney General’s office 6/14, it is apparent that our Texas Education Service Centers are negligent with their our tax dollars. The report verified that there is 6.1 Million unaccounted for. Do our Texas legislators care? As for as I know no one has been held accountable and we keep shoveling money their direction with no oversight. This is ludicrous and needs to STOP!

We have 2 Cscope directors (Ervin Knezek and Wade Labay)  and other Cscope employee’s that have left ESC X III (home of Cscope)  and have created their own business called Lead4ward.  They now are selling their services back to the ESC’s and school district for thousands on top of thousands of dollars. ESC XIII has even funneled money to this company owned by their former employees. Seems like a conflict of interest to me. You may wonder where this business is located. Well just like Cscope it has no official business office or address. The Secretary of State has the business address in a Residence in Austin, Texas. John Fessenden also a former ESC XIII employee has partnered with Ervin Knezek in forming Lead4ward.

Wade Labay was the Cscope director during the Cscope Senate hearings during the 83rd Legislature defending the product.

150 Million was given to Texas Education for professional development PD) through the Rider 42 Professional Development Grants. Millions were given to the ESC’s to train district teachers. Seems strange that Ervin Knezek and Fessenden would need to sell (PD) to the ESC’s and school districts after they were trained to implement PD through the ESC’s to districts.  Texas taxpayers are being ripped off!!

 

 

Cscope is still being sold to school districts by the name TEKS RESOURCE SYSTEM. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

 

 

 

****After reading this I am sure the ESC directors and the other powers at be will be traveling to Austin to suck up to legislators, staying is plush hotels, eating at the nicest restaurants all on the back of the taxpayer’s dime. You can bet on it! Texas Education is a Cash Cow for the powers at be and the children and teachers suffer.

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TEXAS ESC’s EXPOSED PART 3: NOT TRUSTWORTHY

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Crossed-Fingers-When-Lying.jpg-203x300

 

By Janice VanCleave

 

The Texas State Auditor, John Keel, investigated the ESCs and following is a part of the report. Notice that the ESCs admit to a hap hazard method of record keeping. Remember that the ESCs are suppose to be non-profit agencies.

“During the 2012-2013 school year, the 20 education service centers in Texas provided access to a curriculum management system known as CSCOPE to 70 percent of school districts in the state, according to information that the Texas Education Service Center Curriculum Collaborative (Collaborative) provided. Those education service centers reported they collected a total of $73.9 million in revenue from the sale of CSCOPE services to school districts, charter schools, and private schools from September 2005 through August 2013. For that same time period, the education service centers reported a total of $67.8 million in CSCOPE-related expenditures.”

“However, auditors were not able to verify the total amount that education service centers reported they paid for the development, installation, distribution, and marketing of CSCOPE because some of the education service centers did not separately track CSCOPE-related expenditure transactions. Some of them also did not separately track CSCOPE-related revenue transactions. As a result, auditors were not able to fully answer the audit objective to determine the amount of revenue and expenditures related to the development, installation, distribution, and marketing of CSCOPE.”

Q1

With just a very surface investigation of the ESC’s finances, $6.1 Million dollars cannot be accounted for. Yet, state and federal funding continues to pour into the 20  ESCs. How much of the money received by the 20  ESCs is being “misplaced?”

A1

The state auditor discovered that the 20 ESCs make no effort to have accurate financial records. No doubt the ESCs were surprised to have the state auditor investigate some of their books. For years the Sunset Reviews as well as the State Comptrollers have given the ESCs not only passing grades, but praised these state agencies for providing such economical services to Texas schools.

The fee of $73.9 million is considered inexpensive because, according to ESC 11 director, Clyde Steelman, school districts using the CSCOPE materials do not need to hire a district instructional director. CSCOPE has everything needed.

The State Senate Education Committee Hearing resulted in the ESCs being banned from selling CSCOPE lessons or even having the lessons in their possessions. The CSCOPE lessons were found to contain Un-American, pro-Islamic, and incorrect content. Director Steelman as well as all 20 ESC directors are still promoting the gutted CSCOPE materials now called the TRS Curriculum.

In 2011, the Marlin ISD district instruction director, Jamie Johnson and district superintendent, Marsha Riddlehuber, informed me that I could not see the 5th grade science or math CSCOPE lessons.I requested the lessons because I was tutoring kids after school.

I asked about textbooks. NOPE! Marlin ISD no longer used textbooks because the CSCOPE Instructional Materials were so comprehensive. Also, CSCOPE  was an online product and was more current than textbooks. The CSCOPE lessons were copyrighted and not visible to anyone unless they signed a non-disclosure contract stating they would not reveal the content of the lessons.

The ESCs threatened Legal action against teachers if they told parents the content of the CSCOPE lessons.

Q2  How much evidence does it take for a thorough investigation of the Texas Education Centers to be required?

A2 Our Texas leaders have smiled as they falsify reported praise for the 20 ESCs. Yet, all the while, like a child, have their fingers crossed behind their backs. It is time to step up to the plate and take action. Lobbyist DO NOT represent our children or their parents. Get out of the Ivory Towers in Austin and spend some time in classrooms. Don’t arrive like the King or Queen of England, take clues from the TV program called, Undercover Boss. Apply for a teaching position at different school districts. Ask to visit classrooms. Get contact info and call the teachers later. Some will tell you the truth, others are too afraid of losing their jobs. There is little job security for teachers.

How long this will continue depends on our newly elected Governor and Lt. Governor. Will they follow through on their promises to improve Education? It also depends on who the Governor appoints as the Commissioner of Education.

Q3 How much longer are the leaders of Texas going to allow the ESCs to have any input or control over what is taught or how it is taught in our Texas classrooms?

A3  Like the previous Answer, the ball is in the court of the Governor and Lt. Governor.

Things for the Governor and Lt. Governor to think about:

1. The 20 ESCs created an illegal company claiming this company owned CSCOPE. The name of the company was TESCCC. Each of the 20 ESCs directors paid $200,000 each to be a member of the collaborative who owned TESCCC. Where did this money come from?

2. The trustees of TESCCC (ESC directors) filed with the state a change showing that if TESCCC was ever dissolved the Federal Government would receive any proceeds. Originally, the state of Texas was listed. Not only were the ESC directors creating what they thought was a company unconnected to the ESCs, but they wanted the company to not be associated with Texas.

 

 

EXPOSED PART 1

EXPOSED PART 2

 

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ESCs Exposed-Part 2: No Accountability

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ostrich

by Janice VanCleave

Texas Education Service Centers (ESCs) were established to provide service to school districts in different regions of Texas. Schools in rural areas have different needs than do schools in cities.Thus, 20 ESCs were established to provide specific services to met the needs of school districts within each region.

The ESCs were originally supported by the state. In 2003 the state legislature allowed the ESCs to sell products and services to bring in more funding. This ended these agencies being a service to schools and opened the door for poor quality products and programs to be produced and sold to public schools.

The ESCs are allowed to be self-governed, thus there has and still is no one who evaluates the quality of the ESC products.

State legislatures, TEA and the State Commissioner of Education, like the ostrich in the illustration seem to keep their head buried in the sand. They certainly were not paying attention when the ESCs created a one-size-fits-all K-12 instruction material for core curriculum (math, science, ELAR, social studies).  To add a touch of credibility to this unvetted material called CSCOPE, the ESCs advertised the CSCOPE lessons as being “state lessons.” This is printed on the original CSCOPE materials. Since the ESCs are not held accountable for what they do, the original CSCOPE lessons had plagiarized content. This was not discovered because Texas school superintendents forced their teachers to sign a non-disclosure contract with the ESCs. Teachers signed or they had no job. They agreed to reveal the content of the CSCOPE lessons.  The penalty could be legal court action. This divided the staff in Texas schools. As a teacher, I would not respect a superintendent who cared so little for his/her staff that such a contract was mandatory for employment.

Q1 Who is suppose to oversees the ESCs to confirm that state grant money is spent as directed?

A1 TEA is responsible for confirming that grants from the state are used as described. I cannot testify to all grants given to the ESCs from the state of Texas, but the outside evaluation of the Rider 42 PD grant of $150 Million dollars was spent and the product and services were far below par, yet
yet TEA paid the ESCs the grant money.

Q2 Are the boards of trustees for each of the ESCs doing their job?

A2 Some of the ESC employees say having a board of trustees for the ESCs is a joke. The ESC directors handpick these trustees for their ESC.

Q3 Isn’t the Commissioner of Education suppose to oversee the ESCs to make sure they use money correctly?

A3  State Commission of Education, Michael Williams, allowed the ESCs to develop the rules governing the ESCs.

Basically all the Texas Education Service Centers are given “blank checks” with no real checks-and- balances for verifying what money is used for. Only a very small handful of top directors within each Education Service Center are privy to what happens to the yearly inflow of multi-millions of dollars received by each ESC.  The ESCs receive Federal Grants as well as grant money from the state. How much and what the money is to be used for is only known by the elite few within the ESCs.

The long and short of it is that the  ESCs have evolved from service centers to being part of a  very corrupt network. It is difficult to follow the money trail because of the secrecy and misappropriation of funds.  It is all hush hush when it comes to where grant money goes.

Q4 Why did Robert Scott resign from being the state commissioner of education?

A4  Scott resigned soon after the midwinter TASA conference when he basically did an 180 degree turn from where we all thought he was on many things. Most people considered Robert Scott to stand behind conservative education values.

When the superintendents at the TASA conference gave Scott a standing ovation for supporting TASA’s goals,  we realized that he had been a wolf in sheep clothing or had for some reason been persuaded to support TASA’s goals of implementing Common Core and its assessments.

Q5  I personally think the TEKS and the STAAR do not meet the expectations described. The science TEKS are very vague, and some science TEKS are not correct. When I ask for clarification or to report an error, the answer is always that I just do not understand the objective of the TEKS. Is this attitude the same for everyone who asks questions?

A4 Their patronizing attitude is how TEA and the ESCs get away with so much. It intimidates so many including good educators who might work at TEA or the ESCs. We are patted on the head like we just don’t understand the big picture. We get the picture, shut up and do what we say and don’t ask questions.

 

 

ESC’S EXPOSED-PART 1

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Texas ESCs Exposed-Part 1

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Unpacking-the-ESCs

 

 

Texas Education Service Centers (ESCs)

 

Some of the present and past employees of the Texas Education Service Centers (ESCs) want the public, the  Texas legislatures, the Lt. Governor, the Attorney General as well as the Governor to know the truth about the ineffective use of money poured into the ESCs each year.

The ESC employees providing answers include directors, specialists, consultants, and general staff representing many of the ESC regions. While remaining anonymous in this report, those providing answers assure me they will gladly speak directly to state legislatures, the Lt. Governor, the Attorney General as well as the Governor. The Commissioner of Education is not on this list because he as did his predecessor, Robert Scott, supports the actions of the 20 ESCs directly or indirectly by allowing these agencies to govern themselves.

Not everyone who works at the ESCs is involved in the misappropriation of funds or the creation and promotions of Anti-American instructional materials. Many ESC employees would like the Commissioner of Education and the state legislatures to cut off all funding to the ESCs. When the “chee$e” is removed, the rats will look for “chee$e elsewhere. The ESCs can then return to being Service Centers, instead of vendors with a monopoly over instructional materials.

When action is taken against the ESCs, school supervisors will no longer have any reason for not doing their jobs. They will no longer have the “common core” look-alike programs produced and sold by the ESCs promoted by TASA. WOW! I remember how wonderful Texas education was before TASA and long before TEKS and TAKS and STAAR. Texas education was modeled by other states. The textbooks that Texas selected were also selected by other states. Now few Texas schools have real textbooks and the education standards are at rock bottom. How can our Texas Commissioner of Education show his face when students can pass state math assessments by only answering less than 40% of the questions, yet many students fail?

Q1 & Q2 refer to CSCOPE, which the ESCs now refer to as TEKS Resource Service (TRS). The ESCs have been banned from selling CSCOPE lessons.

Q1

What was the objective of the CSCOPE conventions (now called the TRS conventions)?

A1

The ESC staffers who actually present CSCOPE workshops that have been describe them as cheer-leading sessions to build support for CSCOPE or provide general overviews that use ppts that are within the CSCOPE site.

The ESC staffers who present CSCOPE workshops generally are not invited to the CSCOPE conventions. Instead, mostly the ESCs send about a dozen ESC consultants who do no CSCOPE support work with schools using CSCOPE. These are Special Education and other specialists that never work with districts in regard to CSCOPE. We did ask why they were going and got no answer.

FYI: There is a lot of unnecessary money spent sending ESC specialists to conventions and workshops that have nothing to do with the area they work with. No one confirms that money spend on travel is necessary. No one confirms that training, even in other states, is ever used to train educators.

ESC staffers are basically kept in the dark, but are supposed to do CSCOPE workshops as well as our regular ESC workshops. No compensation is given for the extra work. As previously stated, many who attend the CSCOPE conferences do not present CSCOPE training to educators.

Q2

When the ESCs were banned from selling CSCOPE lessons, were the ESC staffers aware that the CSCOPE lessons were to be given to school districts? Also, were staffers aware that the gutted CSCOPE instruction material would continue to be sold to Texas schools?

Q2

We get few to no answers when we ask about CSCOPE. This program was brought in and we were told that it would be used. No questions asked. I can tell you that what we know about CSCOPE in-house is  different from the verbiage given to the public. We get little to no clarification about what is going on —basically we know to just keep our mouths shut and don’t ask questions.

Q3

Project Share– Is this something established by TEA?

FYI: Project Share is a website where Texas teachers should be able to find free instructional materials for all  grades and subjects. The first materials mandated by the 81st legislature in the Rider 42 grant to be posted on the Project Share website were TEKS transition materials. These were professional development materials that compared the old TEKS for TAKS with the new revised TEKS for STAAR. Academies or teacher professional TEKS training were to be given free and the training materials were to be posted in the Project Share website. $150 MILLION dollars was given to develop materials for the Rider 42 grant math, science, ELAR, and social studies academies as well as create the Project Share website. To this day, 2/18/2015, there are Texas teachers and Texas school superintendents who are not aware that Project Share exists. Few Texas teachers attended or even knew about the Rider 42 PD academies.

Ervin Knezek was an ESC employee when CSCOPE was developed as well as when the Rider 42 grant of  $150 MILLION dollars was being spent developing the Rider 42 academies and “Project Share.”  Knezek resigned from ESC 13 in June, 2010 and established the company Lead4Ward in Washington, State in June, 2010. What was suppose to be part of CSCOPE and wasn’t is on Knezek’s Lead4Ward website. What was suppose to posted on the Project Share website can be found on Knezek’s Lead4Ward website.

A3

Yes, TEA rolled Project Share out and every school district is supposed to have access.
But there are levels of access to the Project Share website. ESC staffers used Project Share  like a linked-in account to share ideas or materials. This was the original idea for Project Share. Not only were the Rider 42 academy PD materials to be available, but teachers were to be able to publish materials that they found successful. Also, teachers were suppose to be able to have accounts where they could share ideas with other educators.

Interestingly, some of the ESC staffers have now been blocked to our share boxes. We had access to these share boxes last year, but now there is a public outcry about the CSCOPE lessons, a lot of information is no longer available. We are not sure why except that there is such paranoia in all the ESCs. If what is being told to the public is true about the CSCOPE lessons, why has the ESC  leadership become so secretive about files that were freely accessible last year?  What was open is not very hush hush and private. The directors of the ESCs seem to be concerned about information shared on the Project Share website. They must be trying to keep up with the answers they are giving about CSCOPE  since they give different answers depending on who asks the question.

Overall, most consider Project Share, like the Rider 42 PD academies expensive projects that have been very ineffective. This is due to the ESCs not developing the website and TEA not following up to see that they do. Like all grant money, once the money is gone regardless if the project is not complete, the ESCs are on to doing what ever brings in more money.

The “jig” will be over if the ESCs are ever thoroughly investigated by someone who doesn’t  benefit in some way from the actions of the ESCs.

Q4

Did State Education Commissioner Robert Scott initiate the idea for Project Share?

A4

The plans for Project Share apparently have been bubbling for a while. Scott was so focused on internal issues that we are not sure he was very aware of Project Share, sad to say.

Q5

The Rider 42 grant provided the initial money for Project Share, thus the ESCs were to develop the content posted on this website. Project Share is affiliated with Epsilen, which is a Common Core company. Why is TEA and the ESCs using a Common Core Company when Texas is forbidden to implement Common Core? Has everyone just turned a blind eye to what grant money is used for?

A5

We totally agree with this– No one asks or even watches what the ESCs do. As to Common Core, TASA promotes Common Core and TASA and the ESCs work together. In fact, wha ever the ESCs sell, Texas school superintendents generally buy it because TASA promotes what the ESCs sell. TASA is after all the Texas Association of School Administrators.

Comment from Janice

Think About This!

1. The ESCs provide superintendent certification training as well as training required for School Board Members. Thus, school superintendents and school board members are indoctrinated with constructists (common core progressive) education philosophy used in creating the CSCOPE instructional materials as well as the “Vision Learning” materials sold by TASA. Of course Common Core education philosophy is used in Texas Schools, but it has different titles, such as CSCOPE a.k.a. TRS Instructional Material, and Vision Learning.

2. Texas School Superintendents and School Board Members use district school taxes to pay for their personal membership fees  into private organizations (TASA/TASB) who lobby for different education bills that benefit the primary objective of TASA/TASB, which is to TRANSFORM TEXAS EDUCATION.

Yes, our Texas legislatures are swayed by TASA lobbyists as well as the Microsoft lobbyist Thomas Ratliff (illegal member of the State Board of Education) to pass bills that promote Transforming Texas Education so that it is comparable to common core.

 

This is part I of a series of Questions  from me and Answers from ESC # 1-20 staff past and present. The following will be addressed in following parts of this series on the “Unpacking of the ESCs.”

 

1. In Nov. 2011, Marlin school superintendent Marsha Riddlehuber and the district instructional director, Jamie Johnson would not allow me to view the content of the CSCOPE lessons used in Marlin ISD. Becca Bell the CSCOPE director also refused me access to the content of the CSCOPE lessons. Why? What were they hiding?

2. During the time that CSCOPE lessons were being sold to Texas public schools, the state comptroller,      , allowed the ESCs to write their own evaluation. This is obvious since the wording of the comptrollers evaluations were word-for-word the same as publicity written by the ESCs to promote the CSCOPE materials. Did the comptroller ever ask anyone about the CSCOPE product that was not benefiting in some way?

These questions and many more will be coming soon.

 

ESC’S EXPOSED PART 2

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MAGNOLIA ISD IMPLEMENTING UNITED NATIONS AGENDA

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Across the globe we have a Jordanian pilot burned alive in a cage, Coptic Christians beheaded on an ocean shore and here America public schools are implementing programs intent on making students global citizens. Go figure? Unfortunately, teaching the US Founding principles which made America the greatest country in the world is slowly becoming a thing of the past. The United Nations has an educational program called International Baccalaureate (IB) that Magnolia ISD plans on implementing in the fall of the 2016/2017 school year. I can’t help but wonder does the administration know what they are purchasing. The IB program has a set of driven ethics and morals set on brainwashing students with certain ideologies.

The IB program is bent on creating the following in our children.
+ Collectivist mindset
+Global Citizens 1st, with a concern for social and environmental justice
+Openness to change
+Agents for social change

Magnolia ISD promotes the program as a great diploma program and has not disclosed to parents and taxpayers that this is a United Nations program.
You can find out more information about the IB program here.

You can check this link and see if your Texas school has implemented the IB program.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Knowledge to Avoid Becoming Roadkill on the Bipartisan Global Road to Dignity by 2030

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Sorry for such a graphic metaphor, but somehow reading all the plans to “transform the world to better meet human needs” made me think we have a global class of politicians and cronies, at every level of government, who actually view ordinary people and poverty as their excuse to be in charge and live at our expense in the 21st Century. Human needs and poverty are just excuses for Power where “change in the management of our economies” is the new rationale for Fascism. It prevents at every level ordinary individuals from making their own choices about what they want and what they value. Back in December 2014, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon issued the Post-2015 Global Marching Orders Governments at all Levels are now going about fulfilling. The report is called “The road to dignity by 2030: ending poverty, transforming all lives and protecting the planet.”

“Young people will be the torchbearers” of this vision of “inclusive and shared prosperity” grounded in a “human right” to have the State ensure that “social needs” are met, enforceable under the rule of law (reimagined just like federalism). Not interested in having the UN declare that your life must be transformed? Nobody intends to ask any of our permission. The world simply needs “more effective governance and capable and capable institutions, for new and innovative partnerships, including with responsible business and effective local authorities, and for a data revolution.” That last, of course, gets provided both by the digital learning mandates and by the Internet of Things and social media. That’s probably why how to gather and use all this data for new kinds of governments was the focus this week for yet another get together we were not invited to.   https://www.thegovernmentsummit.org/en/knowledgehub.html Ban Ki-Moon was there though and so was Sir Ken Robinson making sure the global vision of “quality learning for all” remained on track.

Expensive Consultants were there and ready to advise governments and discuss the “key role of business” in satisfying these global plans. “Companies are ready to change how they do business and to contribute by transforming markets from within and making production, consumption and the allocation of capital more inclusive and sustainable.” Nobody asked us, the existing customers and taxpayers. I guess existing Big Business knows whose hand will be feeding it in this vision for managing our economies to meet human needs. When the UN is officially calling out to local authorities and Business and stressing the desire to accomplish these plans for transformation by “aligning private action and public policies,” it’s really hard for me not to read this America Next vision of what is supposed to be the ‘conservative’ vision of K-12 education with its emphasis on the local and private providers through the broader intentions.

http://americanext.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/America-Next-K-12-Education-Reform.pdf was released this week. It is chockful of global Terms of Art like “high-quality standards” for all that fits right into Ban Ki-Moon’s Road to Dignity by 2030. All being done with language about free enterprise, a local government emphasis, and the money following the child. The UN laid out in a 2014 World Economic Forum report it co-wrote on its Post-2015 plans that vouchers were the global means for accomplishing its education agenda. We should take them at their word. To turn our young people into the desired torchbearers would be another way to put it. Seeing regulation via “one of the many well-regarded private accreditation agencies” as the answer for private schools to keep their autonomy despite the influx of public money is either deliberately deceitful by whoever wrote that paragraph or it indicates a woeful ignorance by the report’s authors of the nature of accreditation and its links to the UN System.

Talking in terms of a “public safety net, a minimum standard of sustenance beneath which citizens guarantee no neighbor will fall” is to accept the UN and Karl Marx vision of an enforceable obligation to meet human needs. In other words, in language about limited government, that report actually accepts the entire premise of the Welfare State. It’s a ‘conservative’ document that dovetails with the Road to Dignity by 2030 vision and leaves people ready to be blindsided by what is coming from the UN, local and state authorities, and in the name of progressive or polyphonic federalism. If you live in another country though, these same initiatives may be coming at you via what is being called Devolution.

http://www.respublica.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Restoring-Britains-City-States.pdf also came out this week. It’s a reminder that when the UN agenda of Dignity for All translates into a right of every geographic area at the local level to experience ‘prosperity,’ we will find lots of local politicians ready to sign up for the vision. The local emphasis makes the broader agenda of transformation harder to see and easier to enforce against both people and places. Ban Ki-Moon is probably not coming to your town to trumpet this 2030 justice for everyone vision. That will be the School Principal or District Super, the mayor or a state legislator, even if they have not yet gone for their CIFAL Network training for Local Actors created by the UN System. (see tag).

The Welfare State just put on a new outfit with different names when the rest of the UK decides that no one should have to relocate to London or the SouthEast of Britain to succeed and that local economies and their inhabitants should also have a right to success in terms of “health, education and opportunity.” Politicians apparently believe that basic needs can be met by regulatory fiat. Not likely, but in the US Detroit and Chicago really like this vision a great deal. http://www.corecities.com/sites/default/files/images/publications/Modern%20Charter%20for%20Local%20Freedom_0.pdf Have I succeeded in making everyone wary about hyping the Local as the solution with such plans for transformation swirling around us? Good.

A demand out of the UN that “we leave no one behind, ensuring equality, non-discrimination, equity and inclusion at all levels” and a mandate that “we must pay special attention to the people, groups and countries most in need” means that for the vision to have any chance, much of the focus of the actual policies has to be at the local level. The spirit of these demands and mandates is precisely what we are seeing in the ESEA Rewrite we have looked at and also the WIOA (see tag) legislation passed this summer on a Bipartisan basis. It also fits with the vision for Inclusive Capitalism and the NEW American Dream advocated by one of the primary institutions involved in creating the Common Core and the rubrics for what will count as College and Career Ready in the future.The Business Roundtable is also involved to keep the focus on Big Business and academia’s perks.

In August 2014 the ACT Foundation published “National Learning Economy The NEW American Dream: Our Vision for Living, Learning, and Working in the Performance Era.” http://actfdn.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/ACTF_BrochureRv3_LoRes.pdf Now try to control your shock as it too contains a vision that also has us on that Road to Dignity by 2030.  It also sees the answers to the future in “collective efforts” and “collective action”. Individuals now apparently only exist to have their needs met, as determined by someone else, and “their greater life satisfaction” managed for “themselves and their families.” In this Performance Era the role of knowledge is “shifting” lest it interfere with all these plans being made on our behalf. Instead we get the “interconnected factors of productivity, learning, and skills development”. Once again as determined by cooperating politicians and amenable Businessmen to the UN’s plans for us.

Beyond literally tying the Common Core now to “Capitalism evolving toward inclusion and social welfare,” that ACT/ Business Roundtable document also proclaims that the National Learning Economy will need the integration of “three critical mutually reenforcing systems: economic development (employers and policy), workforce development, and education systems (researchers, educators, trainers, etc. in K-12, postsecondary, informal, and other learning systems).” Probably a good thing it’s so chilly outside because I really am tempted to take an I Told You So Victory Lap at that open admission. Even better for those who have read the Conclusion to my book is the open admission that this is all tied to a different conception of economic growth where “sustainability and renewal are the primary goals.”

I guess meeting the human needs of all will mean no more taken-for-granted modern conveniences like disposable diapers for ordinary people. I have pointed out before that meeting human needs once a certain level of technology and overall prosperity is achieved was the hallmark of what Karl Marx called the Human Development Model. It’s the purpose of the vision of the Road to Dignity by 2030. It was there in that America Next K-12 vision and in Devolution’s insistence in using the local to “distribute ownership and agency to all.” This is how the ACT Foundation winds up its vision of the Pathway to the National Learning Economy:

“In essence, we must construct a road to success for everyone in the performance era, where every piece fits together [including people, their sculpted worldviews via education and the media, and their personalities through social and emotional learning and a Whole Child emphasis] to create a stable, dynamic pathway that continues to grow and offer unique new destinations [using someone else's itinerary] for every working learner to explore in ways that fit their living, learning, and working needs.”

There’s that word again. Now whose needs will really be met in this Road to Dignity by 2030 vision?

The way to avoid being Roadkill is to be aware of all these created pieces and how they fit together.

Think of this post as the most useful Valentine we will ever get.

 

 

Credintialed to Destroy

Robins book “Credentialed to Destroy” is exceptional. She lays out to parents and others that are concerned about our education system but can’t find the answers to what is changing and who is after the minds of our kids.

 

You can get it at AMAZON

 

 

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Childhood Criminalized: Suspended in Elementary School

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kids arrested

A nine-year-old Texas schoolboy was suspended from his elementary school for posession of a “magic ring.” Remember the poptart gun? The Nerf gun? The Lego gun? The pointed finger gun? In another time, these typical childrens’ toys would have gotten as little notice as the old fashioned cap gun but in a world where the list of childhood offenses also includes possession of a novelty pen or a Hello Kitty bubble gun, it comes as little surprise that a Lord of the Rings “magic ring” would land Aiden Steward in suspension from his elementary school in Kermit, Texas.

The story spread like wildfire from Yahoo News! to FOX News, originating with the Odessa American’s original report on the budding fourth grade magician who was  accused of “terrorizing” his classmates because he said that he would make them “disappear” with his Hobbit prop.  Unfortunately, in the 21st Century classroom, displays of “make-believe” are not taken with a grain of salt. Instead, they are perceived through a wary eye, often warranting the kind of macabre school sanctioned remediation that transforms kiddies into criminals.

Two years before Aiden’s run-in with campus zero tolerance policies, seven year-old Alex Evans, a Colorado second grader suspended for throwing an imaginary hand grenade while pretending to “rescue the world” from “pretend evil forces,” and, as the New American reported, “Little Alex, it turns out, violated his school’s ‘absolutes’ against fighting and weapons, ‘real or imaginary.’” There was also seven-year-old Christopher Marshall from Virginia, who was suspended for using a pencil to “pretend shoot” a bad guy — his friend, who, in turn, was also suspended for “pretend shooting” Christopher back.

Welcome to public school, a place where the US Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights March 2014 snapshot of the 2011-12 school year showed that boys, as a demographic group regardless of race and/or socioeconomic strata, represented 79% of preschool children suspended once and 82% of preschool children suspended multiple times, although boys only represented 54% of preschool enrollment.

Even a Yale University study revealed that boys are nearly five times more likely to be expelled from preschool than girls.

According to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS), which is the longitudinal database that tracks student population, 5,289,752 students were enrolled in Texas public schools in 2013-14. Of those, 2,572,354 were girls and 2,717,398, boys — In-School-Suspension (ISS) was handed out to boys 921,120 times, that’s 43% higher than girls who only had 390,781 ISS actions filed against them, also according to PEIMS. The TEA reported that the number of all students who served in ISS K-12 statewide in 2013-14 was 524,268, of which 352,868 were boys, 171,400 were girls.

The Texas Education Code 37.005 defines suspension: (a) The principal or other appropriate administrator may suspend a student who engages in conduct identified in the student code of conduct adopted under Section 37.001 as conduct for which a student may be suspended. (b)A suspension under this section may not exceed three school days.

ISS is a newer phenomenon that allows schools to receive their Average Daily Attendance (ADA) dollars, which is the combination of federal and state funds that school districts nationwide receive per student per day just because the child shows up.  With ISS the “suspended” child is sequestered yet housed on the campus and is technically “in school,” rather than an Out-of-School Suspension (OSS), which is treated as an absence.

However, ISS is particularly troubling to Texas Appleseed because,  unlike OSS, there are no limits on the number of days a student may spend in ISS, according to the non-profit organization’s School to Prison Pipeline project. In their backgrounder Texas School Discipline Policies: A Statistical Overview it states, “ISS programs generally do not consist of any instructional time – most ISS programs are run like a study hall, and are not staffed by a certified teacher.”

The report also points out that school districts are required to refer students to ISS for certain types of violations, usually those involving drugs, weapons, or violent behavior. However, the Texas Education Code gives school districts the authority to refer students for “discretionary” offenses that generally include behavior like use of profanity, failure to turn in work, or behavior that teachers label “disruptive.”

Problem is, “disruptive” can be a broadly used term and in the all-encompassing-compliant-or-else environment being fostered and dictated by zero tolerance policies and safe schools plans, the one demographic feeling the self-esteem squeeze in all this are boys.

Jason Steward, the nine-year old’s father told Breitbart Texas that Kermit Elementary School Assistant Principal Danny Camp accused Aiden of being a “racist” in September 2014.  Aiden was a newly enrolled student. The administrator did not even know his son when when he was playing a “hold your breath the longest” game to see whose face would turn reddest. An innocent comment Aiden made about another child’s dark-skin became a socially-charged rally cry for equity. According to Steward, Aiden was scolded by Camp, not for calling another boy black but for mistaking the boy was African-American when he was Hispanic.

Steward tried to explain to Camp that Aiden did not mean anything derogatory and was just pointing out skin color differences.  “How is a nine-year-old boy supposed to know what is PC?,” Steward told Breitbart Texas.

It did not matter. Aiden got his first ISS. The second came in mid-October over allegedly “sexually graphic” material the boy brought into school. It was from the Big Book of Knowledge and was an illustrated science class cut-away belly-only diagram of a pregnancy. Not exactly Playboy.

With the third incident, the Stewards turned to the media. They felt there was nowhere else to turn. The TEA cannot intervene.  Suspensions are considered a local matter, spokeswoman DeEtta Culbertson told Breitbart Texas.

The underlying issues behind the suspensions are not new. In 2001, Christina Hoff Sommers identified a war on boys that grew out of what she termed a misguided feminism. It is one that has emasculated the classroom. By 2013, Sommers worried that the public schools had become too hostile for boys. She wrote, “In grades K-12, boys account for nearly 70% of suspensions, often for minor acts of insubordination and defiance.”

Regardless of racial, ethnic or socioeconomic strata, Sommers pointed out cases of 7-8-9 year-old boys charged with suspensions, yet there was “no insubordination or defiance.” All these youngsters may have been guilty of was was being a boy. Sommers emphasized that in “today’s school environment, that can be a punishable offense.”

This rigidity continues into the middle and high school years. Zero tolerance is the backbone of “safe schools” and “threat assessment” plans that rolled out in public schools long before Columbine (1999) or Sandy Hook (2012). The Safe School Initiative was a joint project of the US Department of Education and the US Secret Service to prevent school shootings.

USA Today reported that these harsh public school zero-tolerance policies took hold in 1994 when “Congress required states to adopt laws that guaranteed one-year expulsions for any student who brought a firearm to school. All 50 states adopted such laws, which were required to receive federal funding. Many legislatures went further, expanding the definition of a weapon and further limiting the discretion of school administrators.”

Today, Texas public education budgets heavily for security systems, in-house campus police and zero tolerance programs; yet, the Bureau of Justice Statistics reported that only approximately 1% of students ages 12 to 18 reported a violent victimization at school. Sommers highlighted that this figure is one-tenth of 1%.  Bottom line, as Sommers suggests, the overwhelming majority of boys are not sociopathic.

Yet, in today’s dystopian classroom, the male student finds himself struggling in a “climate” that generally favors more compliant and less kinetically wired girls.

“Across the country, schools are policing and punishing the distinctive, assertive sociability of boys. Many much-loved games have vanished from school playgrounds,” Sommers wrote, spotlighting that “tug or war” has been replaced by “tug of peace” and dodge ball and tag are considered “bullying” or “human target” games. They are banned in many states.

The Huffington Post reported that in Massachusetts, one Superintendent of Schools said that their district spent a lot of time making sure their kids were “violence free”. In California, pee-wee basketball is “score-free” so as not to hurt the other team’s feelings.

The American Psychological Association (APA) Zero Tolerance Task Force questioned, in 2008, if after 20 years all these zero tolerance policies have only negatively affected the relationship of education “with juvenile justice and appear to conflict to some degree with current best knowledge concerning adolescent development.”

The APA also noted that “Rather than reducing the likelihood of disruption, however, school suspension in general appears to predict higher future rates of misbehavior and suspension among those students who are suspended.”

Sommers, too, wondered about the on-going mad science experiment in public schools. It is designed “to re-engineer the young-male imagination.” She noted that this attempt is only succeeding in one way in the public schools — in sending a clear and unmistakable message to millions of schoolboys: You are not welcome in school.”

Meanwhile, elementary school-aged boys just like Aiden Steward walk away with quite a “ding” on their school permanent records.

Breitbart Texas attempted to contact Assistant Principal Camp and Kermit Elementary principal Roxane Greer for comment but was redirected to Bill Boyd, Superintendent of Schools office. The superintendent’s secretary said they were issuing a press release only on the matter. Breitbart Texas requested it several times. It was not sent to us before press time.

Follow Merrill Hope on Twitter @OutOfTheBoxMom.

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Texas School Bathroom So Disgusting…. Mom Pulls Child out of School

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outhouse

Texas ISD’s  do not have a money problem they have an allocation problem. Ector County ISD seems to have a problem allocating the funds to have their school restrooms cleaned properly. Below is a photo of a restroom at Sam Houston Elementary within the district, taken by a student with his mobile phone. The mother of the elementary student, Melynda Carlisle said “I think it is disgusting” and has pulled her child out of the school.

This is the check register for Ector County ISD for  DEC/JAN. With that amount of money flowing through the district surely there were funds to do a little housekeeping.

 

ECISD released a statement about the bathroom.

“That is one of the bathrooms at Sam Houston Elementary,” Ector County Independent School District Spokesperson Mike Adkins said in an e-mail response to questions from CBS7. “It is not a Special Education bathroom, those are separate and self-contained. The metal around the toilet seems to be something added at some point in previous years.”

 

 

 

 

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SCHOOL SUCKS ……. THE AMERICAN WAY

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Lisa Arbercheski

Tragedy and Hope

 

 

Don’t let the title fool you. This video is actually about how government-run schooling contributed to the rise of socialism, imperialism and eventually fascism in Germany between the 1890s and 1940s.

Critical Thinking Question:
In school we are led to believe that we are all living in an ideal vision of what society should be…
But whose vision is it?
And what were their ideals?

Based on podcast 025: The Way
http://schoolsucks.podomatic.com/play…

For an expansion of the ideas in this video, check out these episodes of the podcast:
School Sucks #134: The American Way Expanded (1 of 3): The Gasoline-Soaked House
http://schoolsucks.podomatic.com/entr…

School Sucks #135: The American Way Expanded (2 of 3): Pyromania
http://schoolsucks.podomatic.com/entr…

School Sucks #136: The American Way Expanded (3 of 3): The Matches
http://schoolsucks.podomatic.com/entr…

To browse all podcasts, visit http://schoolsucks.podomatic.com/

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TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOLS PROMOTE ISLAM

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The threat of Islamic terrorism  is unfortunately a daily news item. You also hear that Islam is the religion of Peace. While people are murdered on a daily basis under this so called peaceful religion I beg to differ and plead for others to wake up. The Quran contains 109 verses calling for Muslims to war against the unbeliever.

It is no secret that the creation of an Islamic Caliphate is the ultimate goal of those that follow the political ideology of Islam. Dallas, Texas is home to  an Islamic Tribunal that operates under the oppressive ideology of sharia law.

Yesterday, January 29th,  Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) which is known to be a terrorist organization held TEXAS MUSLIM CAPITAL DAY in Austin.

While Texas is being inundated with the threat of the Islamic ideology Texas Public schools are educating students with a positive view of Islam. The truth that people are murdered daily, women are oppressed is not being taught.

 

Magnolia  ISD teacher Janice Robinson had removed the her Islamic power point but not until I was able the copy the following the slides from it.

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Happy Muhammad

 

 

Decatur ISD  has the following powerpoint teaching Muslims believe in the Judeo Christian God, Allah.

 

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KILLEEN ISD

mohammad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Texas Principal Reinstated – Possibly Suspended for Linking to Christian Website

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BRIGHT

 

 

 

by Bob Price

 

Dr. Imelda Medrano  and Katy ISD Superintendent Alton Frailey.

 

A Katy, Texas, junior high school principal was reinstated after being put on administrative leave earlier this month. Katy Independent School District (ISD) officials would not confirm the reason for the punishment. Parents believe Seven Lakes Junior High School Principal Dr. Imelda Medrano (on right in the photo above) was placed on administrative leave because she sent out a newsletter with a warning to parents. The newsletter linked to a Christian parenting website.

The website, Crosswalk.com, contained information the principal believed would be helpful in alerting the parents in her school about the potential dangers to children from phone apps like Snapchat and Vine, according to an article in the Houston Chronicle by St. John Barned-Smith. The district emailed parents on January 12th to advise them to disregard the article sent out by the principal. They chose instead to refer parents to the school district’s website on cyberbullying.

Crosswalk.com tells the story of a twelve-year-old girl who was lured away from her home by a 21-year-old man who allegedly took her to a motel and had sex with her. He allegedly used an app named Whisper to communicate with the girl on the cellphone her parents had given her. The Crosswalk.com article cites several apps for phones they believe parents should watch out for. Those include Kik, Snapchat, Vine, ChatRoulette, Omegle, Tinder and Poof. It describes why the apps can be dangerous and suggests how parents should talk to their children about them.

Earlier in the week, the Chronicle reported that parents had organized a Facebook group to support Medrano. They expressed dismay that the principal had been put on leave with no explanation from school district officials. “I think we are just in this limbo,” said Jennifer Gawne in the article, a parent to two eighth-grade students at the middle school. “Mum has been the word,” she said. “No one knows why she was put on leave.”

However, the email sent out from the district reveals what many parents believed to be a clue. The email stated, “On Friday, January 9, you may have received an eNews containing an article titled ‘9 Most Dangerous Apps for Kids’ which was obtained from a website that had not undergone a thorough review and approval process for content distribution. Please disregard that article and content.”

Katy ISD Police also tweeted out a link to the Crosswalk.com article.

Katy ISD Police Tweet

In another message from Katy ISD parents were advised, “Please know, the Seven Lakes Junior High staff and administration is committed to its students, mission and tradition and will do everything necessary to ensure the continued success of our students during this interim process.”

The district’s lack of communication as to the reason for the suspension is leaving parents concerned. One parent, MariAnne Petry Vondenstein expressed her concern in the Facebook support group. After expressing support for the principal she said, “I think we are in serious need of the district to tell us what the reason was she was put on Admin Leave. We have had at least one child in SLJH since the doors opened, and currently have one in school and have had nothing but respect for the way she runs the school and the way she has handled situations we were involved in. BUT the fact remains, unless someone here has the ‘skinny’ on the actually [sic] reason for her current situation, I think the only thing we should be demanding now is, WHAT WAS THE CAUSE?”

“If anything she did was in direct harm or ill regard to any of our children, we have the right to know. If it was a religious email, that may or may not have offended someone, we have the right to know. We have the right to know what it was the person we entrusted our dearest treasures (our children) to her hands every day for years could have possibly done to be removed and replaced literally in a matter of days,” Vondenstein concluded.

Michelle Braud conveyed what she had learned from the district. “I attended Leadership Katy yesterday and had the opportunity to ask what the situation is in regards to Dr Medrano,” she explained. “The response was that there is nothing to do with the kids and that she is undergoing a personal review at this time. That’s all they will say right now.”

Many parents expressed support for Medrano. Jennifer Gawne said, “As a parent, I have never seen a Principal so accessible to parents. She really does have an open door policy. She gets back to you very quickly when you email her as well.”

“One of the things that impressed me most was the surveys sent out at the end of each year where Dr. Medrano asks for feedback for how our campus, teachers AND principals are doing,” Gawne continued. “She does this because she is always looking for ways to improve both her performance and to make our school a better place. She WANTS parent involvement and goes out of her way to make parents feel comfortable when they come on to campus.”

On Friday, Katy ISD superintendent Alton Frailey, shown with Dr. Medrano in the photo above, sent yet another email to parents. “Following an administrative review, I am pleased to share that effective Thursday afternoon, January 22, 2015, Dr. Medrano was reinstated as principal at SLJH,” Frailey wrote in the email. He explained that she would be back in school Tuesday.

“I appointed Dr. Medrano to open SLJH in 2012 and since then, she has demonstrated successful leadership capacity at the school,” he concluded. “She has my full support and confidence as she continues as principal at SLJH.”

The school provided no further information about the cause of the administrative review or the suspension.

Bob Price is a senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.

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College and Career Readiness Scam

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TEXAS COLLEGE SCAM
BY JANICE VANCLEAVE
TEA keeps dreaming up new ways to disrupt the focus of the core curriculum: reading, writing, math, science, and social studies.
TEA and the 20 Texas Education Service Centers have more than 80% of the Texas School Districts indoctrinated with the progressive common core education philosophy –AKA– Discovery Learning. This method of education puts the student in charge of his/her education. The teacher just present problems and the students on their own discover the necessary facts to solve the problem. Discovery learning  is successful with gifted and talented students, but only if they are self-disciplined and self-motivated.Thus, discovery learning is unsuccessful with the majority of students.
Discovery learning  is a method where students take charge of their education and teachers are only to be  “guides on the side.”
What is the point of requiring teachers to have college degrees if students are to take charge of their own education?
The discover learning method depends on students coming to school with a desire to learn and information that they can share with other students. The idea is that each student has something different to contribute, thus by brain storming students can solve problems themselves. I started my teaching career in 1966. Teachers were expected to be in control of their classes. Teachers were expected to be knowledgeable about the subjects they taught and they were to provide students with the basic facts necessary to solve problems. During my teaching career I taught many different sciences at different grade levels and in different school districts. I started out with one if not the best mentor ever, Ms. Marcille Hollingsworth, who wisely taught me that a teacher must have control of the class in order to present the concepts necessary for problem solving. That was 49 years ago and now veteran teachers like Ms. Hollingsworth are encouraged to leave the teaching profession. They are considered trouble makers because they do not agree with what is being called the “Twenty First Century Progressive Discovery Method” of teaching.
How is the 21st Century Progressive Discovery Method working out?
I recently volunteered to mentor a new 8th grade science teacher and help create a science lab room. To say that I was shocked at the behavior of the students doesn’t come close to describing my experiences. Teacher friends had told me that students were difficult and the new teaching philosophies made it next to impossible to maintain order in the classroom. You cannot come close to imagining how the progressive discovery method has destroyed the learning environment of our public schools.
Some of these 8th grade students must have their tests read to them. Yes, there are 8th grade students who cannot read well enough to read their tests and are in regular class rooms without any particular assistance. The idea is that by being in regular classes these non-readers will learn more than if in a small class with teachers trained to help them. It is really sad to see a student making every effort for other students not to know they cannot read. By working in groups non-readers have learned to copy the work of other students even though they cannot read and understand what they write. Some are behavior problems. Some misbehave instead of doing any work because they cannot read and their writing skills are so poor. They would rather be viewed as being disobedient instead of thought of as being dumb.
Mixing students of different abilities is called Inclusion and is hailed as a system to provide equal education to all students.
I do understand that parents want their children to have the best education. Parents of students who have learning disabilities have fought for the rights of their children. They won the right for their children to be in the same classes with children having no specific learning disability. Now, instead of their children being in small classes with several specially trained teachers to help overcome and/or learn in special ways, children with learning disabilities have less special assistance. All inclusive classrooms move at the same pace.  Administrators promote the idea that teachers are able to provide individual assistance to students who need extra assistance. Teachers are to prepare lessons for students with different abilities, thus gifted students and students with learning as well as emotional disabilities all receive lessons designed especially for them.

STOP!

First of all students are suppose to be taking charge of their own education–working in groups and sharing ideas with teachers not giving them facts—remember teachers are to be guides on the side. But with inclusion there are students who are not capable of taking charge of their education. The truth is that no student can do this in elementary and few in upper grades. When questions about students with learning disabilities, administrators “craw-fish” and put the responsibility of providing special lessons for these students.

Public education is a mess.

Some of the 8th graders I work with can read but have little comprehension. Most of the students have little self-discipline. None of the students have the skills to design a science investigation to discover the answer to a problem. This is because all of the students have very little science knowledge to draw on. They have been in charge of their own education for so many years that many have such a poor education they could not apply for the most basic jobs.
The teachers are also trained to use the Fundamental Five Steps of teaching taught by “Lead Your School.” This requires teachers to have students working in groups among other things, such as having the perform critical writing at the end of every class period. I read the book for this course and it gives no clue what is considered critical writing. Basically students are to summarize what they learned during the class period.
 Students do not have textbooks that they bring to class. Instead, a worktext is issued and it remains in the classroom. The pages in this book are perforated so they easily tear out. These books were originally developed for common core standards. The publisher had a group of Texas educators to revise some of the sections so that these worktexts can be said to align with Texas standards called TEKS. These hodgepodge revised worktexts have students doing mindless busy work. A few students who are either self-disciplined enough to want to learn and/or have parents who encourage them to learn do the work and those in their group copy the answers.
In Waco ISD, students who want to learn are allowed to attend classes with other students of the same mind set. Waco ISD has a special school for these students. I’ve had the honor of being invited to work with these students. It was like stepping back a few years when teachers were in charge of their classes. Yes, traditional education, which has been described by our Texas Educational service systems as old fashion, not acceptable in our modern 21st century technology education systems. What a joke.
In classes where  teachers are not in charge, students often tend to be loud and not focused on the lesson. .Why are teachers being blamed for the failure of our education system when those at the state level force teachers to allow students to be in charge of their own education. The 8th graders that I work with would not have a clue how to behave in the event of a true emergency. During one of the labs, I tripped and fell on the floor hitting my head on the edge of a cabinet. There were students near me but none made an effort to help me. I was not badly injured and purposely remained on the floor as I screamed–
“I’ve fallen, will someone help me.”
The teacher in the adjoining room came in immediately, but most of the my students never acknowledged my cry for help because they were loudly talking to each other. I cannot control the behavior of these students. I ask the administration for help and was told to have a discipline plan–rules for students to follow and consequences. There are no consequences that these students fear.
Are is there? I recently observed something I’d never seen in the school before.
A substitute teacher who has never been indoctrinated with all the CSCOPE and Lead Your School nonsense monitored classes for one of the 8th grade teachers. For the first time I saw 8th grade students sitting quietly as they did their individual work. The substitute was busy assisting the teacher by grading papers. Had the teacher been there, he would have been reprimanded for sitting at his desk and grading papers.
It appears that only substitute teachers are allowed to have a quiet classroom. Only substitute teachers are not allowed to sit at their desks. Regular teachers must be walking around the room guiding and encouraging students who are working nosily in groups or making poster board projects etc…… Students are to appear to be enjoying the class. A quiet class with students doing individual work is only to be observed during the multitude of testings.
All the TEKS are to be taught before the STAAR tests in April
I am discovering that there is really not enough time to teach students the content of the TEKS before the assessments (STAAR/EOCs) are given.
Think about it:
     Some days are cut short so that teachers can be trained to encourage students to go to college. This is called “No Excuses University.” Teachers are given a book to read so they can better encourage students to go to college. This book has nothing to do with the content that each teacher is hired to teach. I read the book—It would be good for teachers training to be teachers. Those in the professions should know everything in the book. But, since our 20 Education Service Centers are now training people to be teachers, principals, and even superintendents, maybe they do not know how to teach–or lead.
Think about this:
The 20 ESCs are forbidden to write and sell lessons to schools because of the faulty, antiAmerican, anti-Christian CESCOPE lessons. Yet, these same people who purposely created instruction materials that were never reviewed are in charge of training people to teach our children; training people to be principals and superintendents as well as training school board members. In other words, the 20 ESCs have more control over Texas Public Education than TEA, the Commissioner of Education, and all the legislative education committees.
Since many students cannot read well and have little comprehension of what they read, TEA has solution for these problems:
1. Make the TEKS and STAAR/EOC tests more rigorous.
2. Add more for teachers to present as they guide from the side.
Now teachers are to incorporate College and Career Readiness into their “lessons.”This is another education scam–meaning that more material can be sold to schools–more programs sold to schools for college and career readiness when time needs to be spent teaching students to read.

DUH! WILL SOMEONE IN AUSTIN LISTEN?

MANY OF OUR CHILDREN CANNOT READ AND WRITE. MAKING THE TESTS HARDER DOESN’T IMPROVE THEIR READING SKILLS.

 

I WANT SENATORS AND STATE REPRESENTATIVES TO SPEND TIME IN CLASSROOM. I INVITE YOU TO VISIT THE CLASSES THAT I WORK WITH.  CONTACT ME HERE

WHAT IS WRONG WITH OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM IN TEXAS?

PEOPLE WHO DO NOT CARE AND LOVE OUR CHILDREN HAVE TAKEN OVER EDUCATION. IT IS ALL ABOUT MONEY AND HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH EDUCATION.

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Pamela Geller: Charlie Hebdo Butchery Motivated Dallas Protest

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BRIGHT

 

 

 

The grassroots came out en masse to rally with American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI) president Pamela Geller, who    spoke on behalf of free speech on Saturday, January 17, 2015 in the Dallas suburb of Garland. They gathered across the street  from the Curtis Culwell Center, the public school-owned facility which housed the Islamic fundraiser, Stand with the Prophet, that ignited a community controversy.

Breitbart Texas spoke with Geller and asked why she decided to come out to Garland. She cited the Charlie Hebdo butchery as that impetus.

“In the wake of the slaughter of these writers and these cartoonists, you would think in America the Muslims would hold a conference in support of free speech. Instead, they’re holding a summit in support of the very ideology responsible for the slaughter of that editorial staff,” she told Breitbart Texas.

To illustrate her point, Geller handed out large inflatable yellow #2 pencils to symbolize the very tool of free speech that cost 12 French satirical magazine cartoonists their lives by the hands of radical Islam.

“This is about freedom of speech,” Geller emphasized. She pondered why, in the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, “it’s not the Muslim world looking introspectively and asking themselves, what is it about the religious underpinnings of this ideology” that lead to such an atrocity? Instead, they go to a different place.  That place, she said, “is always fear of Islamophobia.”

Breitbart Texas first reported that at the heart of the controversy was Garland Independent School District (ISD) taxpayers’ concerns that the Islamic benefit was held on public school property. The $30-plus million multi-purpose Curtis Culwell Center was funded by the property taxpayers mainly through revenue bonds in 2002. The Garland school district services the municipalities of Garland, Rowlett, and Sachse.

Geller cited this as a violation of the Establishment Clause, which prevents the US government from showing preferential treatment for one religion over another. This benefit featured Imam Sirraj Wahhaj, an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombings. Geller recounted that Wahhaj had its mastermind, the “Blind Sheik” Omar Abdel Rahman, speak to his New York City congregation a number of times.

Rahman was convicted in 1995 of plotting to blow up the World Trade Center and other New York City landmarks.

Geller said that Wahhaj has called for an Islamic caliphate to replace the US government. Another prominent Stand with the Prophet speaker and event producer Malik Mujahid has advocated for Sharia or Islamic law in the United States, even though his attorneys claimed his statements were “taken out of context,” according to CBS DFW.

“This is what they are standing up for?” Geller asked. “This is what the superintendent is putting in your public schools?”

She added, ” It’s an abomination.”

Geller underscored that Garland ISD superintendent Bob Morrison had been “co-opted and should be fired” referencing his attempt to impose Arabic as a mandated language previously.

In 2011, Morrison, who was then Mansfield ISD superintendent, tried to bring in mandatory Arabic language classes into his former district through a federal grant awarded to teach the Arabic, East Texas ABC affiliate KLTV-7 reported.

The district insisted the curriculum would not be about the Islamic faith but parents stopped the program saying they should have been informed about the federal Foreign Language Assistance Program Grant that identified Arabic as a ‘language of the future.’

Garland ISD residents felt similarly disenfranchised as to what their taxpayer dollars were supporting at the Curtis Culwell Center. Stand With the Prophet was unassumingly listed on the event calendar under Sound Vision Foundation, Incorporated. These sentiments were voiced by many at the rally.

Becky Nelson, a Garland resident, has ancestral roots that run deep in the area. Her paternal family established the neighboring city of Rowlett. She was gravely concerned. “I pay taxes, I am a good citizen and I feel I have no say. No one has a say or a vote. You get to pay taxes but have no say,” she told Breitbart Texas.

Another 15-year Rowlett property taxpayer who asked to remain anonymous added to the conversation, noting the eerie parallels of “taxation without representation” that Garland ISD families feel in the handling of the matter.

This resident also referenced the recent school board meeting in which the board president seemed to give equal rights to rent the facility although it came at the expense of the people who got to pay for the facility who had no say in what their school board does.

“It’s not right. We’re paying for it; our government officials are turning a deaf ear to us,” she said.

At the recent Garland ISD Board of Trustees meeting a small handful of school property taxpayers spoke during the public forum section, voicing reservations over the district renting its multipurpose center for an Islamic fundraiser.

After hearing only the first few comments, school board president Rick Lambert said, “I’d ask that you address new issues rather than saying the same thing over.”

“Garland ISD would never allow a neo-Nazi or an Arian nation group to rent the building but they allow a group whose main speaker advocates the overthrow of the United States government and the end of our way of life?,” the resident added.

Surrounding community members like Irving’s Nancey Tresler told Breitbart Texas, “We find it ironic that the place the Muslims choose is a school where religion is banned from school. Islam is an all encompassing political and religious philosophy of government. They should not be allowed on school grounds.”

Some, like Garland resident Sandra Bunch were just plain scared of radical Islam. She said, “It really irks the living daylights out of me that my school tax dollars are going to fund this (facility) for people who want to kills us.”

Area Tea Party representatives voiced concerns from an even broader perspective.

Frisco Tea Party president Tom Fabry told Breitbart Texas that he was there “to support American laws for American courts. Sharia is not a ‘fit’ for American values.”

Barbara Harless from the North Texas Citizens Lobby, agreed. “Islam is not compatible with our constitution.”

Small business owner Wayne Richard of Plano was also there to show support for the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. “This is about free speech and the First Amendment. Sharia law’s very foundation is incompatible with what this country stands for.”

For North Texas resident Ron Murphy II, however, it came back around to Garland ISD. He told Breitbart Texas, “I am protesting them using taxpayer funded building for what I’d consider propaganda.”

Murphy added that he’d have no issue if this event, or others like it, had been happening on private property.

Follow Merrill Hope on Twitter @OutOfTheBoxMom.

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Texas School District to Host Islamist Conference to Fight Islamophobes and Promote Islam

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garland isd

 

 

By

WWW.EAGLERISING.COM

 

While Americans are lured into a complacent sleep by the constant drum beat of social justice, minority rights, inequality, the need for fairness and tolerance and diversity and to be non-judgmental of others or their views, forces are at work to exploit that sentiment.

While the world is filled with the news of Islamic terror other Islamists are at work to silence the critics by holding informational conferences and conducting public outreach.

One such case is happening in Texas at the Curtis Culwell Center (Garland Independent School District property) which is hosting an Islamic conference titled “Stand with the Prophet in Honor and Respect” that proclaims the need to be “Ready to defeat Islamophobia?” according to the Sound Vision Foundation, “a not for profit organization serving Muslims.”   The event is scheduled for Saturday, January 17, at 5:00 pm.

The Sound Vision Foundation’s web site states in part: Ready to defeat Islamophobia? This is not an event. It is the beginning of a movement. A movement to defend Prophet Muhammad, his person, and his message.
 
This benefit will raise funds to establish a Strategic Communication Center for the Muslim community, which will develop effective responses to anti-Islamic attacks, as well as to train young Muslims in media.

islam-in-schools-2Really?

And two of the speakers slated for this event are: Imam Siraj Wahhaj and Abdul Malik Mujahid.  So just who are these individuals?

Imam Siraj Wahhaj (according to the Clarion Project web site)

Wahhaj was listed as an “unindicted person who may be alleged as co-conspirators” in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.

Wahhaj supports the implementation of Sharia (Islamic law) governance, including its criminal punishments. “Islam is better than democracy.  Allah will cause his deen [Islam as a complete way of life], Islam to prevail over every kind of system, and you know what?  It will happen,” he has preached.

In September 2013, the NYPD justified its surveillance of Masjid at-Taqwa by pointing to evidence of terrorist and criminal activity there. The assistant imam is suspected of using the mosque to raise money for terrorist groups.

Wahhaj has been a Vice President of the Islamic Society of North America since 1997 and was a member of the North American Islamic Trust’s Board of Advisors from 1989 to 1993.

Abdul Malik Mujahid (according to the web site CreepingSharia)

said “Qital [killing] is an essential element of Islam. And sometimes you don’t like it. Qital is ordained upon you, though it is hateful to you, but it may happen that you hate a thing which is good for you, and it may happen that you love a thing which is bad for you….And one example is, now we have 60 or so Muslim countries, and not a single one of them wants to go for Qital and Jihad for Bosnia. Qital is ordained upon you though it is hateful to you.”

It is absolutely disappointing that a Garland Independent School District would host an event that is aimed at fighting against honest, God fearing Americans who have legitimate concerns about the Islamist movement in America and around the world.

Would Garland host a Nazi Conference? A KKK conference? An Aryan Nation or skinhead conference? An anti-Semitic conference? Then why this one?

Contact the Curtis Culwell Center in Texas and the Garland Independent School District and let them know you think this is an outrage and should be cancelled.

It’s clear Islamists never rest (they lie in wait) and never should non-Muslim Americans rest in the face of such propaganda!  Jefferson said to be ever vigilant and educated to the threats of freedom.  These groups, like the Council for American Islamic Relations (CAIR) are attempting to misinform the public about Islam and teach others how to brand anything anti-Islam as Islamophobia.

noislamWhen one group of Americans is unable to criticize that with which they passionately disagree they are no longer being treated as equals. They don’t see it this way, why, because Islam doesn’t see non-Muslim as equals. Some might say I know a Muslim, I work with a Muslim, I have a Muslim friend or a Muslim neighbor, they treat me well. They just might, good for them, however Islam, their religion, does not. Muhammad didn’t treat his neighbors well – he killed them. And a conference that calls for honoring and respecting Muhammad is an affront to everything American.

The prophet of Islam was a pedophile, a rapist, a polygamist, a racist, a tyrant and a murderer. I don’t find that worth defending – calling it honorable or respectable is beyond an outrage.

Tolerating evil is evil itself. Islamic law, Sharia, does not recognize let alone respect Democracy, liberty or freedom of speech, so if you do, if you believe in God-given inalienable rights — you had better start using them while you still have them.

Voltaire said, “To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” When we cannot be critical of an ideology that has been a murdering totalitarian force for 1,400 years something has gone wrong with logic, facts and reason. No matter how many “good” Muslims we might know — Islam is anything but peaceful, it is totalitarian, it is deadly to non-Muslims. Just look around you!

Sharia Law reveals an impassible gulf between Islamic and Western thought and American law. In America, the government derives it’s just powers from the governed and acknowledges the inalienable rights of every individual, of which justice and protection from violence is foremost.

Islam’s legal system is radically different: the father is “governor” or “administrator” of the family. That is, he is a sovereign within his domestic realm, with the right to employ violence to control his wife, children, and others. That alone makes Sharia Law incompatible with the Western concept of human rights.

U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights:  

Article 5 – No person shall . . . be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.

Most, if not all states have laws that prohibit Domestic Abuse, Battery, Terror Threats, etc. that include fines, community service, and up to three years in prison.

notislamophoic

Islamic Sharia Law (*Reliance of the Traveller):

 

  1. Obligation to Command the Right and Forbid the Wrong – Muslims are obligated to discipline others. If censuring with harsh words, breaking things, or intimidation does not work, Muslims are obligated “to directly hit or kick the person, or use similar measures that do not involve weapons.”  (Section q5.8)

 

  1. Wife beating – “[A husband] may hit her, but not in a way that injures her, meaning he may not break bones, wound her, or cause blood to flow.”  (Section m10.12)

 

  1. Honor killing – “The following are not subject to retaliation:  a father or mother for killing their offspring, or offspring’s offspring. (Section o1.2(4))

 

  1. Killing an apostate – “There is no indemnity for killing an apostate.  Or any expiation, since it is killing someone who deserves to die.” (Section o8.4)

 

  1. Obligation to engage in Jihad – “Jihad is a communal obligation upon Muslims each year.” (Section o9.1)  The objective of jihad is:  “The caliph makes war upon Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians until they become Muslim or else pay the non-Muslim poll tax.” (Section o9.8)

 

* The most complete and concise source book for Islamic Sharia Law is “Reliance of the Traveller.” It can be accessed on-line free — type “Reliance of the Traveler” in your browser search engine.  Reliance of the Traveller is approved by Al Azhar University (Cairo)  and the U.S.-based International Institute of Islamic Thought.
Read more at http://eaglerising.com/13599/texas-school-district-host-islamist-conference-fight-islamophobes-promote-islam/#BldKT8rsUKtlW3So.99

About the author: David Whitley

 

David is a deacon at his local church and a perpetual student of religion, politics and American history. Author, speaker, blogger, David lives in Southern California with his wife and their three children. You can follow him on Twitter @cogitarus or online at cogitarus.wordpress.com. He’s available for speaking engagements upon request.

Read more at http://eaglerising.com/13599/texas-school-district-host-islamist-conference-fight-islamophobes-promote-islam/#BldKT8rsUKtlW3So.99

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“Texas Should Divest Itself of Turkish Charter Schools”

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sharia

By Donna Garner

12.28.14

                      

http://www.educationviews.org/texas-divest-turkish-charter-schools/

 

 

If we Texans care about the spread of the Islamic State and Sharia law in America, we need to divest Texas of any involvement with the Gulen Turkish Harmony Charter Schools.  If they want to become private schools to spread their Islamic-friendly indoctrination, then that would be one thing; but when they want to use our taxpayers’ dollars to do it through charter schools, then that is quite another issue.  

 

How do we know that our taxpayers’ dollars are staying right here in Texas to support the Harmony Schools, or are those taxpayers’ dollars being sent to Turkey to help support ISIS? 

 

For all of the following reasons, we in Texas should have grave concerns about the Harmony Charter Schools tied to Fethullah Gulen and Turkey:    

 

Point #1:  Turkey siding with the ISIS fighters against the Kurds — 9.29.14 – “Turkey giving arms to ISIS fighters to hurt Kurds” – ABCNews —

http://abcnews.go.com/International/battle-kobane-isis-kurdish-fighters-battle-turkey-syria/story?id=25844742

 

 

Point #2:  The newly found rant by Fethullah Gulen posted by Pam Geller on 12.24.14 is particularly significant…”make like a bomb and explode against the USA”… “that we must reverse the games onto the USA in 5-10 years” —http://pamelageller.com/2014/12/video-of-pennsylvania-muslim-cleric-fethullah-gulen-explode-yourselves-like-a-bomb-against-the-us.html/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

 

 

Point #3:  The recent security threat declaration on the Gulen Networks in Turkey… President Erdogan’s looming arrest warrant and extradition for Gulen:

 

12.19.14 – “Turkey issues Fethullah Gulen arrest warrant” – BBC News — http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-30552148

 

12.19.14 – “Turkey issues arrest warrant for Erdoğan rival Fethullah Gülen” – the Guardian –

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/dec/19/turkey-fethullah-gulen-arrest-warrant-erdogan-us

 

12.20.14 — “Gülenist private school in Egypt raided” – Daily Sabah Politics —http://www.dailysabah.com/politics/2014/12/20/gulenist-charter-schools-in-egypt-raided

 

Point #4:  The worsening relationship between Turkey and the United States — 10.29.14 – “For Turkey and U.S., at odds over Syria, a 60-year alliance shows signs of crumbling” – by Liz Sly —Washington Post –http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/for-turkey-and-us-at-odds-over-syria-a-60-year-alliance-shows-signs-of-crumbling/2014/10/29/9fa07c49-0546-4afd-b6ad-cf6fa70e7fe4_story.html?wpisrc=nl-headlines&wpmm=1

 

 

Point #5: The advancement of Sharia law and the Islamic state by using our public schools —  

 

“Then there are garden variety Muslims bent on advancing Sharia law in our schools who also wield enormous power. Take, for instance, Fethullah GulenGulen is a Muslim committed to the advancement of the Islamic state. He has called for the destruction of the United States and all infidels. And he has set up a network of publically-funded charter schools.” 12.28.14 — “Allah in Our Schools:  Common Core Lesson Plans” — by Carol Brown – American Thinker —http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2014/12/allah_in_our_schools.html

 

Point #6:  The federal report exposing Harmony’s special needs students and English language learners –11.26.14 – “Federal report: Special-needs students, English learners ‘significantly underrepresented’ at Harmony charter schools” – by Holly K. Hacker  — Dallas Morning News —http://educationblog.dallasnews.com/2014/11/federal-report-special-needs-students-english-learners-significantly-underrepresented-at-harmony-charter-schools.html/

 

 

 

Donna Garner

Wgarner1@hot.rr.com

 

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PARENT ALERT “GIVING TUESDAY” CURRICULUM WARNING

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Most parents want their children to grow up to be kind, compassionate, charitable adults. So when schools sponsor activities which foster giving, most parents are supportive.

In the past few years, a new “giving program” has been developed called “Giving Tuesday.” The group’s website states:

We have a day for giving thanks. We have two for getting deals. Now, we have #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. On Tuesday, December 2, 2014, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.

Sounds good. After all, the Christmas Season has always been known in America as our most charitable time of year.
Giving Tuesday” even provides k-12 school curriculum free on their website to help teachers and schools develop “giving” programs and “encourage” everyone – students, staff, parents and the community – to participate.
Sounds like something most Texas parents could support.

But when President Obama issued a “Giving Tuesday” message and Harris County Department of Education (HCDE -the federal government’s back door into Texas public schools) pushed “Giving Tuesday” and linked to the “Giving Tuesday” website for schools to “get ideas,” I decided to look deeper. After all, it wasn’t just a coincidence that Arne Duncan visited HCDE in person.

(Note: HCDE is a leftover government entity from 1889 and a past era of Texas education when counties operated our public schools. It still exists only because of a loophole democrats passed back in 1995. HCDE does not answer to the Texas Education Agency, the Commissioner of Education, or the County Commissioners so they have made themselves the federal government’s liaison into Texas public schools. They by-pass TEA and push the federal “cradle to grave” programs across the state.)

 HCDE not only posted the link to the “Giving Tuesday” website, they encouraged Texas public schools to participate saying:
  • Giving Tuesday” Get Your Campus Involved
  • Teachers will want to know about #GivingTuesday, a global   day for giving back….
  • As a teacher, you can encourage your students and parents to take action
  • Organize an event on your campus
  • Announce a new fundraising initiative for your school that day
  • Please don’t forget about #Giving Tuesday Dec. 2
  • Share your #Unselfie.

But a closer look shows the “Giving Tuesday” free curriculum teaches “lessons” that would not be acceptable to many parents, and certainly not to any conservative ones.

What is this curriculum teaching?
Here are some quotes from the lessons:
 
Investigate the idea of Privilege in order to raise awareness about the way that both you and others DO and DO NOT experience Privilege in your communities.
Text: “I think whites are carefully taught not to recognize white privilege, as males are taught not to recognize male privilege. So I have begun in an untutored way to ask what it is like to have white privilege. I have come to see white privilege as an invisible package of unearned assets that I can count on cashing in each day, but about which I was “meant” to remain oblivious. White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, maps, passports, codebooks, visas, clothes, tools, and blank checks.” – McIntosh, “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack
1. What does McIntosh mean by “white privilege”? Why is it invisible?
2. What might be in that “invisible package”? Create a list.
3. Why does McIntosh state that white privilege is “meant” to be something that one does not recognize?

ANSWER: “Charity is just writing checks and not being engaged. Philanthropy, to me, is being engaged, not only with your resources but getting people involved and doing things that haven’t been done before.” — Eli Broad
In contrast to 19th century “charity,” which had been destined for the needy (it was a form of social welfare), philanthropy of the 20th century was “for mankind.” The shift from charity to philanthropy occurred when the Rich partnered with progressive elites of the academic world, local governments, and professional associations. They all worked together to generate progress in science, education, human rights and public health…The “foundation” was created at the beginning of the 20th century as a way to channel big money to important social causes designed to promote human progress…Our nation has come to view philanthropy as both a quintessential part of being American and another means of achieving major objectives. American citizens embrace the idea that with rights come duties; we have the duty to work for social justice as members of a larger community.

Do research on the Internet to find out how BIG philanthropy has helped and will continue to help everyone—even those who donate the money. You may want to begin with the following names: Johns Hopkins, John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie,
George Soros, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet.

Prior to the airing of a BBC documentary in October 1984, Americans had heard very little about the Ethiopian famine. Since the Reagan administration was reluctant to send provisions directly to this socialist regime, it actually cut its food assistance – to zero – in 1984…After it aired, the BBC film shocked the world: 10 to 12 million people were starving or on the verge of starvation in Ethiopia….The LIVE AID rock concerts in London and Philadelphia in July 1985 sought to raise money for the starving of Ethiopia. An estimated global audience of 1.9 billion, across 150 nations, watched the live broadcast. Famous singers such as Elton John, Madonna, and Phil Collins participated…Mass fundraising efforts led to the distribution of 20,000 tons of food to two million people each month…After the concerts, the Reagan administration changed course and approved $45 million for USAID to buy and transport 80,000 metric tons of food…This event led to the passing of the African Relief and Recovery Act (1985), whereby aid for “rehabilitation” was deemed by Congress to be legal – even in socialist countries. Funding for irrigation projects, seeds and tools, and training in health skills became possible…
Using the following historical notes, teach students about the backlash against President Johnson’s approach to eradicating poverty in the United States.
“In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson launched a War on Poverty: his goal was to create better schools, health, homes, and job opportunities. To attain this goal, the federal government created programs like Head Start, Legal Services, the Job Corps, Medicaid and improvements in Social Security. It was the responsibility of the government to lend a helping hand to the poor. Yet ever since this War on Poverty, conservatives have championed the idea that the poor are responsible themselves for their own poverty with bad attitudes and faulty lifestyles.”
How can you persuade others that your ideas are valid, relevant, and infused with a sense of purpose – without coming across as pushy and without offending your audience?
“Giving Tuesday” states that the purpose of teachers using their curriculum is NOT to foster charity in the hearts of school children, it is to use the students to FUND RAISE. 
Quotes from the curriculum guide:
1. The primary goal of this curriculum is to generate a genuine and authentic commitment to service in your school community by energizing students about fundraising for a specific cause in preparation for #Giving Tuesday….
(You can read the entire curriculum here.)My Observations

Besides being extremely biased, left leaning material, which may be objectionable to many Texas parents, it is questionable if this curriculum is even legal in Texas.
Texas Education Code Sec. 29.906 outlines character education restrictions for Texas public schools. “Charity” (not philanthropy) is a character trait listed in the statute and requires curriculum be approved by a school district committee before being used in the classroom. This committee must consist of:
  • parents of district students;
  • educators; and
  • other members of the community, including community leaders.

Statute also includes the following statement:

This section does not … authorize proselytizing or indoctrinating concerning any specific … political belief.

Texas Education Agency makes no mention of the  “Giving Tuesday” curriculum.
But “Giving Tuesday” was still encouraged by Harris County Department of Education (HCDE) – with a link to the website offering the free curriculum.
In a quick search, I found two other Texas School districts which mention “Giving Tuesday”:

 
 

Humble ISD participated through their Education Foundation and offered the link to the “Giving Tuesday” curriculum on their website

An Austin ISD press release states, “Schools put philanthropy curriculum into action…”

If your school district participated in “Giving Tuesday,” you can file a request for public information to find out:

  • Which curriculum was used
  • If the curriculum was pre-approved by your school district committee and
  • Who serves on your district’s committee

You can get more involved by volunteering to serve on your district’s Character Education Committee in the future.

A final note: Texas Representative Debbie Riddle has been trying to close the loophole which allows HCDE to continue to operate. Last Session she authored HB945  (with Fletcher/Miller, Rick/ Elkins/Toth) but the Texas House Public Education Committee blocked her efforts.
You may contact the Texas House and Senate Education Committees as well as your own representatives and let them know Texas conservatives want the Harris County Department of Education (HCDE) closed.Colleen Vera
www.TexasTrashTalk.com

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“Tortured language” Used To Promote Common Core in Texas

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twisted language

Dec 6, 2014 by

By Niki Hayes

12.6.14    

http://www.educationviews.org/tortured-language-promote-common-core-texas/                  

    

            “Tortured language” has been an important government tool for years. (Just ask Jonathan Gruber, chief architect of ObamaCare, who bragged about the use of tortured language in writing that controversial piece of legislation.)  Such “tortured writing” uses euphemisms and flimflam when taking falsehoods and twisting them so that people will misconstrue them as truth.

 

A new example in Texas is the Education Service Center 11 (ESC 11), a governmental agency, with its chart comparing Common Core math standards with the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) standards.  (To see the ESC 11 chart, please go to:  http://womenonthewall.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/TEKS-OldStandard-CommonCore.pdf.)

 

ESC 11’s chart claims that Common Core and TEKS are equal in content and scope. Therefore, they say schools can buy Common Core-aligned materials and feel safe that the materials support our TEKS. This is pure flimflam – “tortured language.”

 

I was a member of the Texas math curriculum standards writing team when we wrote the new 2012 Math TEKS.  I can state unequivocally that the new Math TEKS that we wrote and the Texas State Board of Education adopted are not the same as the federally-driven Common Core math standards. 

 

First, our TEKS document is a brand name product that was developed by 80 citizens who put in 12-hour days during three separate meetings over four months. We were charged with developing quality standards that would benefit our children and Texas citizens. We built our TEKS starting with a draft first created by a panel of mathematics experts that was commissioned by the Texas Education Agency (TEA); then we researched specific states with outstanding math standards at the time (such as Minnesota, Massachusetts, and Indiana). Most importantly, we brought to the table professional knowledge and experiences as educators in Texas classrooms. We knew our state’s children and their needs. The TEKS were personal to us.

 

In contrast, Common Core is a generic brand created largely by unknown individuals outside of Texas. Some of the main writers, whose names were finally released publicly, had never even been classroom teachers.  For many reasons, not the least of which is cost, numerous states are now struggling to back out of their federal Common Core contracts.

 

Even though Texas was one of the few states that said “NO” to the Common Core, one of the Texas Education Agency staffers tried to urge our Math TEKS writing team to use the Common Core Math Standards to craft our Math TEKS.  As a member of the Grade 3 – 5 team, I made it clear that we should not be looking at the Common Core Standards for guidance since Texas had refused to adopt Common Core Standards from their inception.

 

The same TEA staff member resisted efforts to have the required use of the “standard algorithms” specified in the TEKS. (This is the procedure used in multiplication and division that our parents and grandparents learned and which is used internationally.)  The staffer said standard algorithms are considered a “traditional math” approach and were thus considered inferior by many math reformers. 

 

I also wanted a restriction against the use of calculators for daily problem solving in elementary grades. Reformers on the writing team supported the push for technology in K-12 rather than the traditional methods (paper and pencil) of student learning.

 

Even though I vociferously advocated for standard algorithms and the restriction against calculator use among elementary students in Grades K-5, I was losing the debate. Therefore, I contacted Dr. James Milgram, one of the panel experts hired by TEA, and asked for his help.  He stepped forward, and a higher-up official at the TEA also got involved.  References to the Common Core by the TEA staff ceased.  The required teaching of standard algorithms and the restricted use of calculators in Grades K-5 were adopted in the final Math TEKS document.   

 

Despite some philosophical differences on what we should include in the Math TEKS, our group did agree that the standards had to be explicit, direct, and clear. They had to be understandable not only for elementary teachers (many of whom fear mathematics and need clarity and brevity in instructions) but also for parents as well.

 

Our TEKS writing team agreed that the new TEKS standards had to be measurable with objective criteria and that each element had to be testable through objective measurements.  Our team knew that the new TEKS would not be perfect but that they needed to be traditionally oriented standards (a.k.a., Type #1) as compared with the 1997 TEKS which were “fuzzy” standards (a.k.a., Type #2).

 

The chart that ESC 11 has created attempts to show that Common Core’s “process standards” match our new TEKS “process standards” and that makes Common Core and TEKS similar in scope. That is ridiculous!  The new Math TEKS standards that our writing team finally produced in 2012 has strong and specific expectations listed in the “Introduction” before each grade level.  No such clear, explicit, competency-based language is found in the Common Core.

 

Next, the public needs to look at our final TEKS Math Standards and compare those definitive and clear statements with Common Core’s wordy, complex explanations, many of which are not understandable because of the confusing and complicated wording. (Federal or state curriculum standards are also not supposed to mandate pedagogy [how to teach]; that is to be left up to the local educators.)  

 

Below is a comparison example from the Math TEKS and from the Common Core:

 

TEKS, Grade 5, Number and Operations 3.H:

 

“Represent and solve addition and subtraction of fractions with unequal denominators, referring to the same whole using objects and pictorial models and properties of operation.”

 

Common Core, (same standard but labeled NF1 and NF2):

 

“Add and subtract fractions with unlike denominators (including mixed numbers) by replacing given fractions with equivalent fractions in such a way as to produce an equivalent sum or difference of fractions with like denominators. For example, 2/3 + 5/4 = 8/12 + 15/12 = 23/12. (In general, a/b + c/d = (ad + bc/bd). Solve word problems involving addition and subtraction of fractions referring to the same whole including cases of unlike denominators, e.g., by using visual fraction models or equations to represent the problem. Use benchmark fractions and number sense of fractions to estimate mentally and assess the reasonableness of answers. For example, recognize an incorrect result 2/5 + 1/2 = 3/7 by observing that 3/7 < 1/2.”

 

In numerous cases, there are additional Common Core standards that, if utilized, would add to the already packed TEKS.  This would not help educators prepare their students for the STAAR-End-of-Course tests. Why risk wasting time, energy, and money on unproven and generic materials (Common Core) when the traditional approach to math has been proven successful for generations, in spite of those educators who say it hasn’t?

 

Speaking of time, it is time for many of these education “leaders” to have to teach for one year in a classroom and use the directives and requirements they have put on classroom teachers. These leaders should also be required to receive the credit or the blame for any poor student achievement.

 

More to the point, why are Texas education service centers, administrators, and political leaders allowing ESC 11’s false narrative and chart to be presented to teachers and parents as truth, especially when it is against state law to use Common Core materials and standards in Texas as stated by the Texas Attorney General (TAG). (Re: Use of the Common Core Standards Initiative by Texas school districts to teach state standards. RQ-1175-GA — https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov/opinions/opinions/50abbott/op/2014/pdf/ga1067.pdf)

 

Why are Texas leaders ignoring the TAG’s ruling and flaunting the law by using public tax dollars for illegal purchases by school districts and ESC’s?

 

I believe if Texas leaders had led their classroom teachers to teach the new Math TEKS when adopted in 2012, rather than waiting until they were required to do so in 2014, students’ scores on this year’s STAAR and End-of-Course math tests would have shown considerable improvement.

 

School leaders should make sure all students in Texas public schools have instructional materials that teach the fact-based, clearly stated, explicit, grade-level specific, measurable requirements as outlined in our state’s Math TEKS.

 

Texas children, teachers, and parents deserve clarity, not confusion, from their leaders on education issues. That includes their not being victimized by curriculum materials such as Common Core that use “tortured language” and make material unnecessarily difficult to understand. 

 

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CORRECTION TO PODCAST: In 2012 the Math TEKS (Texas’ curriculum standards) were adopted in K-12 by the elected members of the Texas State Board of Education; however, the K-8 Math TEKS were not required to be implemented fully into the schools until 2014 when the textbooks (e.g., instructional materials – IM’s) were available for purchase. The high-school Math TEKS are not required to be implemented fully until 2015-16 when the new Math IM’s will be available for districts to purchase.

 

12.3.14 — PODCAST – Alice Linahan of Women on the Wall — conference call with Nakonia (Niki) Hayes, the author of The Story of John Saxon

 

LINK TO PODCAST:   https://soundcloud.com/alice-linahan/women-on-the-wall-with-nakonia-niki-hayes-the-author-of-the-story-of-john-saxon

nikihayes@att.net

 

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Texas Education Commissioner Williams, Validates Texas on Common Core Path

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In 2011 Education Week reported that Texas was pulling out of the Council of Chief State School Officers, a influential Washington Organization due to philosophical differences.  Robert Scott the Texas Education Commissioner at the time felt the values of Texas and CCSSO did not line up not to mention the CCSSO was behind creating national standards aka Common Core. The  organization Achieve is another Washington group (surprised?) behind creating the Common Core standards and the philosophy behind it. Achieve Texas is a subsidiary of the Washington group.

Unfortunately this week the current Texas Education Commissioner, Michael Williams appears to be proud that Texas is now becoming a national leader with meeting some of the goals of CCSSO. You can read his comments below.

 

ccsso photo

 

Informed activist across the state knew that HB 5 was just another step to be completed for those behind the national education reform. Setting students up on Career Pathways before they are old enough to have any true life experiences in making an educated decision as to a career path is a shame. Students today have become to the state cogs in a wheel for the powers at be. Along with the education reform comes data collection from the time a child enters the public school system through out their career. Texas has implemented the Longitudinal Data System. All data is open to 3rd parties and the data collected ranges from test scores, disciplinary actions, medi,cation religion, political affiliation, etc.

 

After finding a social studies assignment within the controversial curriculum Cscope, sold by the Texas Education Service Centers calling for students to draw a new Communist Flag  I am greatly concerned where we in Texas are heading.

 

Parents need to wake up!!

 

 

College and Career Ready

Teaching to the Core

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Common Core scares Chinese immigrant who grew up under Chairman Mao

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EAG

 

BOB KELLOGG
Bob Kellogg is a freelance journalist. His work regularly appears on OneNewsNow.com.

PARKER, Colo. – Having grown up in communist China during Chairman Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution, Lily Tang Williams of Parker, Colorado, says the Common Core national standards being imposed on America’s public education system scare her.

Lily Tang WilliamsShe came to the United States from China to further her law degree. But after a time, she decided she loved the freedoms and opportunities that America provided and decided not to go back. She now has three children. One of her two sons was just graduated from the Air Force Academy and the other is working full time and going to school part time. Her 15-year-old daughter is a sophomore in high school. In the midterms, she ran for a seat the Colorado Legislature as a Libertarian.

Recently, she decided to educate herself about Common Core. She says there are things about it that remind her of her education growing up in China. She tells EAGnews that her number one concern is the data collection, the data mining, of children and their parents.

“That’s what we had in China…every child will have a file, actually every citizen in China has a so-called ‘personnel file.’ And this ‘personnel file’ will document everything. When you are in school, they document your family political class, your gender, your age, your home address, your grades, you behaviors, political correctness. So everything is in that file.”

Common Core encourages such data collection. Jane Robbins of the American Principles Project says schools implementing the Core are increasingly conducting surveys to acquire very personal information about students. It’s a means of getting state and federal funding. She says the surveys are not directly related to Common Core.

But she says, “It’s all part of an educational progressive mindset. [Educational progressives] have got to have every school doing the same standards and ultimately with the same curriculum. And [they’ve] got to collect data on anything and everything because otherwise how can they know what’s effective and what’s not effective.”

Robbins says they’ve got to know everything in order to control everything.

Williams says the personnel files in China follow a person throughout his or her life and exerts a lot of control over individuals, where they can live and where they can work. She says she doesn’t want to see the same thing happen in this country.

Williams is also very concerned about the Common Core curriculum and standardized testing. She says the ‘Advance Placement U.S. History’ course, for one thing, is worrisome because they’ve taken out a lot of the American exceptionalism, information about the Founding Fathers and capitalism is only mentioned three times. Entrepreneurship is gone.

“So basically what they teach our kids is basically the leftist agenda and focus on what they want your kids to learn,” she says. “And that really worries me because I came to this country because of the Constitution, the rights, the values, individual liberties….that sounds like music to me because I never had those in China.

“But now they’re going to teach our kids not to focus on those individual liberties and American exceptionalism, and capitalism and free market…and they’re going to teach another kind, leftist agenda that is like a garbage agenda.

“Haven’t we learned from the past that communism and socialism don’t work? We’re in trouble because children are our future. If they control our education of our children, they will control this country’s future.”

Another concern is the standardized tests that go along with Common Core. In China the National College Entrance Exam is very competitive. It lasts for three days and all kids have to take it. And if they don’t pass, they don’t make it into college and it is considered a great humiliation.

“Some kids even commit suicide either before the test or after the test because the pressure is so big,” Williams says. “So why do we want to become like China? Those kids have a low life. Those kids are miserable. It’s all about training them to be test-takers, test machines, not critical thinkers.”

She says she has become very passionate about speaking out against Common Core. She says she feels morally obligated to tell her story so she can wake up Americans. Recently, she testified before the Colorado Board of Education and told them: Common core, in my eyes, is the same as the communist core I once saw in China…. Nationalized testing nationalized curriculum and nationalized indoctrination…. I cannot believe this is happening in this country. I don’t know what happened to America, the shining city on the hill. Chinese children are not trained to be independent thinkers….They are trained to be massive skilled workers for corporations.”

Williams has written an open letter she is releasing titled, “A Chinese Immigrant Mother Against Common Core.” She tells EAGnews she is sending the letter to the president, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Department of Education, her representatives in Congress and the school board members in her daughter’s district.

A video of her testimony before the Colorado Board of Education has gone viral and she says she’s been getting requests for radio and print publication interviews. She also has been invited to speak to New Yorkers United for Kids.

 

 

 

By virtue of her passion about the issue, she has become an activist who’s is trying to get others involved in opposing Common Core. Her website is http://www.lily4liberty.com and she encourages people to log in and download her letter so they can take it to their districts’ school board meetings and present it to their board members.

 

 

 

 

MOA

 

 

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KATY ISD SCHOOL BOARD SHUTS DOWN MARINE COLONEL’S TESTIMONY

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