Browsing articles in "Early Education/Nanny State"
Mar 31, 2009
ELW

The Case Against Government Preschool – Myths vs. Facts

The pork-laden federal stimulus law contains $53.6 billion for education including early childhood education and  $2.1 billion for Head Start and Early Head Start.  Another $2 billion was added to the Child Care and Development Block Grant, including $93.7 million for childcare quality activities.  Despite massive budget deficits, many states like Minnesota are still trying to spend more on these wasteful, ineffective, and invasive programs.

Although lacking evidence of effectiveness and political popularity, early childhood education has become the new silver bullet answer of the education cartel to solve America’s education woes.  Unfortunately, liberals and teachers unions with their desires for more funding and more control over families have been joined by big business, with its insatiable appetite for more workers, including mothers, and for government subsidies, in this case to cover employees’ childcare costs.  These businesses, along with allegedly conservative politicians and big government economists have gotten on the bandwagon of having childcare turned into another government education program funded by the taxpayers. Continue reading »

Mar 22, 2009
ELW

Nanny State On The March: Protect Your Children & Parents’ Rights

Despite serious economic problems, huge deficits, high taxes and too much regulation, Minnesota state government is looking to expand its control in the raising and education of young children, take over private  childcare, decrease parental choice, and spend more money it does not have on invasive and ineffective programs.  Here are the bills of serious concern as well as a brief update on the budget situation and ideas of how you can be involved to protect both your freedom and your money.

1. More Government Control Over Early Childhood Care and Education – When EdWatch Action first reviewed the early childhood language presented in the education omnibus policy bills (HF 1026/SF 1218 and SF 1253 – education policy bill), we thought it  was another typical example of the Democrats’ big-government tendencies.  Imagine our shock and horror when we found out that this language came from the state Department of Education, supposedly run by Republicans.  Here are some of the many problems with this bill: Continue reading »

Feb 9, 2009
ELW

Action on Radical Early Childhood Bills

“Most citizens would recognize the anti-bias curriculum as a highly politicized curriculum which seeks to impose a particular ideological world-view upon children. Most taxpayers would simply be astounded that tax dollars are routinely being spent toward the state-by-state implementation of these apparently politicized standards.” (Mark Kindt, former Ohio and West Virginia Democrat Assistant Attorney General.)

With a simple committee amendment, House Democrats reintroduced for the state’s youngest children what amounts to the old, rejected Minnesota K-12 education system called the Profile of Learning.  Our last alert described how HF 40 and HF 246 would impose a statewide quality rating system (QRS) on both public and private childcare programs.  With this amendment, every child in the program that receives state money will be taught the controversial Early Childhood Indicators of Progress and assessed using the subjective, invalid Kindergarten Readiness Assessment.

Despite assurances from the authors that participation is “voluntary,” the goal of these bills is to eventually impose a radical non-academic government-driven curriculum and assessments on all children and childcare programs in the state. It will ultimately drive programs out of business that don’t comply with these preposterous outcomes.  The word “voluntary” appears nowhere in either bill.  Rep. Nora Slawik (D-Maplewood), committee chairwoman and author of HF 246, made it clear that childcare providers will feel “pressured to get rated” by the state. Continue reading »

Jan 28, 2009
ELW

Action on Radical Early Childhoold Bills – Bills Impose Government Curriculum on All MN Childcare SF 72, HF 40, and HF 246

Despite a massive budget deficit and lack of evidence of effectiveness or support in the general population, liberals in both the House and Senate are attempting to implement a statewide Early Childhood quality rating system (QRS).  This is not about school readiness or academics. It’s about indoctrinating our most vulnerable citizens with the ideology of the left. While a rating system that would help parents understand health, safety, costs, hours, or provider philosophy would be useful to parents, the government wants control curriculum, as well.

Instead, SF 72, HF 40 and HF 246 require programs to monitor preschoolers’ academic progress with an assessment tool.  The most likely tool will be the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment, also called the Work Sampling System.  This assessment is very vague and subjective. It is based on the controversial Minnesota Early Childhood Indicators of Progress, and it is falsely used to say that 50% of Minnesota children are not ready for kindergarten.  The end product will be that every childcare program in the state will be required to teach a government curriculum that is subjective and non-academic and that promotes fuzzy mental health outcomes.  The legislation would expand this controversial QRS that was developed as a pilot program by the Minnesota Early Learning Foundation (MELF). MELF is the un-elected non-governmental organization that was given $6 million of our tax dollars in the last biennium to set important early childhood policy with no public oversight whatsoever. Continue reading »
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