Browsing articles in "Common Core Standards"
Mar 19, 2010
ELW

Minnesota Legislators Resist Race to the Top

As the Common Core Standards have finally become available for public comment, resistance from all points on the political and philosophical spectrum to both Race to the Top and the imposition of national standards has increased.

Using Minnesota as an example, while the teachers’ union has consistently opposed legislation that will call for alternative teacher licensure, another of RTTT’s many components, legislators of both parties are increasingly alarmed at the unconstitutional nature of the mandates, the loss of state sovereignty, the absolute requirement of national standards, and the costs of implementation.  Led by Representative Gene Pelowski (D-Winona), a strong and consistent opponent of the No Child Left Behind law, he has been joined by Republican co-authors Mark Buesgens, Kurt Zellers, Dean Urdahl, and Dan Severson in introducing HF 3677. It is important to note the Rep. Zellers is the House minority leader who had originally signed a letter of support for the grant application in an effort to try to redeem some of the heavy tax burden sent to Washington on behalf of Minnesota’s schools and their many innovative programs. Now, however, he has become concerned with the loss of control, the mandates, and the implementation costs. Eden Prairie Republican Senator David Hann, also a long-time fierce and principled foe of unconstitutional federal interference into education, introduced the Senate bill, SF 3181. Continue reading »

Mar 19, 2010
ELW

Legislative Wrap-Up: Overall, Liberty Stands

The 2010 Minnesota legislative session will be known for what children, parents, and taxpayers were spared.  Thanks to you making your voices heard and the work of freedom-minded legislators, along with a big deficit and complex politics, Minnesota has been spared Race to the Top involvement, adoption of a dumbed down indoctrinating federal curriculum, mental health education, loss of the right to vote on levy extensions, and expansion of nanny state programs for our youngest children.  Here are some details:

Race to the Top and Common Core Standards

As described in our last alert, the Minnesota House explicitly rejected the Common Core Standards.  While only 25 House members were willing to go on record to expressly reject the entire Race to the Top program, most likely due to desire for federal funds or the mistaken idea that teacher reforms would somehow be worth the federal control, the ultimate result was that the Minnesota House rejected Race to the Top. Continue reading »

Mar 8, 2010
ELW

Senate Committee Adopts Core Standards

A valiant bipartisan effort to remove the Common Core Standards language from the Senate omnibus education policy bill was narrowly defeated on the evening of May 4th.  This language was the same that was defeated and that we warned you about in the House bill last week. It would adopt the yet to be completed national standards by expedited rulemaking authority, meaning no public hearing, all to gain 20 points in the unconstitutional, sovereignty-robbing Race to the Top program.  These national standards, especially because they are likely to become the basis for federal funding for No Child Left Behind, and as confirmed by many respected groups, such as the Cato Institute, the Heritage Foundation, and the Heartland Institute, will become a de facto federal government run curriculum.

Senator David Hann (R-Eden Prairie) offered the amendment in committee that would have taken out that odious standards language.  It was eloquently supported by Senator Kevin Dahle (DFL-Northfield) and Senator Gen Olson (R-Minnetrista). Continue reading »

Feb 5, 2010
ELW

Race To The Top: Federal Control of Education On Steroids

Karen R. Effrem, MD – President

Origins and Implication of Race to the Top

Without the slightest bit of legislative discussion in either chamber, the Obama administration quietly slipped $4.35 billion of education funding into the stimulus (“porkulus”) bill passed last year for a program called Race to the Top (RTTT).

With the nearly one trillion dollars spent for the stimulus as well as the trillions spent or proposed for the federal budget, health care, and cap and trade legislation one might reasonably wonder why a few billion dollars for more federal education spending is any big deal.  The answer is that federal government is using this program to bribe states to accept even more federal control of education, a constitutionally and traditionally state function.  This dangerous trend of more federal control of education was greatly accelerated by the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law. However because of the intense opposition engendered by NCLB from all points on the political spectrum and the difficulty that the Obama administration has run into trying to implement its expansive and statist domestic agenda, RTTT is accomplishing more of that same federal control without having to go through the messy process of reauthorizing the controversial NCLB.

Components of Race to the Top

Race to the Top has several components, but there are several that are extremely dangerous for state sovereignty in education, parental rights to control the raising and education of our children, and privacy, respectively: Continue reading »