Top Down Education: Rotten to the Core
Saving Alabama's Children from Common Core Standards
Alabama’s bill to repeal Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCS) may be in trouble due to outside pressure on the Senate to do nothing until after the House acts. This is dangerous since we have committed support in the Senate but not in the House. Please contact your reps today and urge them to stay strong in their commitment to repeal. If you’re not familiar with CCS, there are several links below which outline the dangers of this top down approach to education which is another power grab by the federal government. Who knows best how to educate your child? You or those in Washington? Homeschoolers, this affects you as well.
All GOP Senators except three have committed to vote for the bill to repeal. We expect support from one or more of these since constituents are meeting one on one to explain what CCS is and how it leads to federal control of K-12 education and the loss of local control and how the bill to repeal would return control to parents; protect the privacy of students, families, and teachers from non-academic data collection and sharing this private information with the federal government and private parties; preserve state sovereignty over education; and ensure transparency and public hearings in the future to prevent the state board of education from ever again forcing a complete overhaul and fundamentally changing our education system without the knowledge of legislators, parents, and taxpayers.
House Members, who aren’t familiar with CCS, have two concerns:
(1) LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY: They are unsure that the Legislature has the constitutional authority to overturn a decision by the state board of education. They do! In fact, according to a 2002 Alabama Supreme Court decision, “The Alabama Constitution vests the duty to provide for public education ‘squarely upon the shoulders of the Legislature’.” (Ex-parte James, 836 So. 3d. 813 at 85.) In addition, the Alabama Legislature has repeatedly instructed the state board of education in matters dealing with standards and curricula. These are contained within Title 16.
(2) WHO CONTROLS CURRICULA? They want to know who controls Alabama’s curriculum since the state superintendent and state board of education members tell them Alabama does. The fact is that since the BOE adopted CCS (= NEA = DC), it controls our curriculum. This is abundantly clear when you read CCS legal documents and implementation plan. Alabama, as other adoptive states, must adopt/implement 100% of CCS as written. Alabama may not change or delete anything, and may allow only a small amount of additional content (which won’t be covered on the national tests). Further, Alabama’s current standards are higher than CCS.
There is considerable pressure outside the Senate to stall this bill since 19 Republicans out of 22 have committed to vote for the bill. We need your help in contacting your Senators and asking them to push for a committee vote and a floor vote as soon as possible. There is no need to stop the momentum and wait until the House acts. It is routine for bills to be introduced and acted on in both chambers simultaneously. We’re entering the fourth week of the legislative session and time is running out. (For example, in the event that both chambers pass the bill but they’re different, there will have to a conference committee, more committee meetings/votes, more amendments, and those who may want to kill this bill can do so simply by stalling the process until time runs out without ever having a floor vote and being held accountable to their constituents for how they vote.) We need to get the Senate to pass SB 190 immediately. A public hearing is scheduled for next Wednesday, February 27th. To keep the momentum, we need the Senate Education Policy Committee to vote this bill out of committee for a floor vote immediately after the public hearing on the 27th. There is no Senate rule that prohibits the committee from voting immediately after the public hearing. This is done routinely and was done yesterday.
1. Email or call the sponsor of the Senate bill, Dick Brewbaker and THANK HIM for sponsoring the bill. He is taking a lot of heat from outside sources and he needs to know we appreciate his courageous stand to protect our children, Alabama values, and states rights! He knew there would be powerful adversaries but he decided to sponsor the bill anyway. Tell him we have his back! He can be reached at: 334/242-7895 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
2. Email your individual Senator and ask him/her to not be swayed by outside pressure and to pass SB 190 immediately!
3. The two above actions are urgent! If you have time, please also contact your House Representative and ask him/her to support HB 254 to repeal Common Core.
You can find your state reps at AlabamaReps
You can read more about the dangers of CCS in Michelle Malkin’s series and other articles linked below. After learning more about CCS, conservatives in other states are working to repeal its adoption. I spoke with a parent last Saturday whose children, one in K and one in 2nd grade, attend a school that has implemented CCS. She said they are now spending on average of 3 hours a night on homework that she believes is designed to take away from their family time and indoctrinate the parents with what is being taught to the children. She said the reading is below her children’s current level, but they have no option to move ahead since the testing is set. She said that the math problems are worded in a way that incorporates an agenda, for example, if you are trying to save 10 birds injured in an oil spill…You get the picture.
Tips on the best times and how to contact your reps are here:
In an effort to disseminate this information as quickly as possible and with her permission, much of this information was copied from an email from Elois Zeanah, the 18th president of the Alabama Federation of Republican Women. Thank you, Elois, for leading the charge.