Sunday, May 12, 2013

Common Core Standards conference call May 15th at noon

Common Core Standards conference call May 15th at noon

May 10, 2013
Heritage Action will host a conference call at noon on Wednesday, May 15th with Heritage education expert Lindsey Burke to discuss Common Core national standards.  Lindsey has been sounding the alarm against Washington’s overreach in our education system and has graciously agreed to join us on the call next week.
The call in number is 1-800-757-3718 on May 15, 2013 @ noon!
Lindsey will have 10 min for remarks, and then will open up the line for Q&A.  Plan to join us and please invite others you know that are also concerned about the issue and may have questions.

Sandra Stotsky Discusses Common Core

I am posting this video of Dr. Sandra Stotsky talking about the issues she had with the Common Core English Language Arts Standards. 

I am asking you to remember, that anyone who was invited to and participated in the Common Core Standards validation panel is a proponent of National Standards. Their underlying motivations may not have been the same.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Indoctrination in Zaner Bloser Curriculum

Indoctrination in First Grade Reading and Writing Curriculum written specifically to the Common Core Standards.

 - Not only does this video show the social justice part of the Common Core Curriculum - the message is that Mom and Dad may not want what is for the "common good" and we may have to manipulate them, because they are not very smart. The other evening, I was at a gymnastics class for my two granddaughters. When the class was over, they left with their mother and I left in my vehicle. We live on the same side of town and I was behind them for part of the drive home. Shortly after arriving home, my first grade granddaughter called me and asked if I was behind them when they were by the McDonald's. When I said that yes I was, her response was, "Well, mom said you were behind us and she told us to wave to you, but I thought my mom was lying." I said, "Your mom would never lie to you and make you wave at a stranger." She responded with, "Yes she would."  Now, my daughter-in-law is one of the best mothers I know. My granddaughters are so blessed to have her for their mother. I asked her who told her that her mother would lie to her. She didn't know. I knew then, it was part of the indoctrination, the underlying message of the curriculum, and the national take-over of our schools.

The latter part of this video gives you a glimpse of what report cards will be like. More to come on that later.

Thank-you Utahans Against Common Core. 

Friday, May 10, 2013

Stolen Education, Stolen Children, Stolen Future

When the news got out that New York parents were coaching their children to not take the standardized tests, I was so uncomfortable. I wasn't sure if when I was a student, I would have had the courage to put down the pencil and stick to it with a teacher standing there telling me to pick up the pencil. I felt like parents were asking their children to stand up for what we, as parents, are supposed to do. I understood the parents frustration, but none the less, it is the parent's job to change things in the schools, not the children's. 
Yesterday, this video of a Texas student teaching his teacher how to teach was messaged to me. I watched it and again I thought the same thing. Our children are fighting a battle, that we as parents, are charged with fighting. I know there has been criticism of his behavior. Was he belligerent? Yes. I don't know of any parent who would encourage their child to behave like this in the classroom. I also understand that his rant came from the frustration he and many, many other students are experiencing in the classroom. And in his youth, he probably didn't know any other way to handle it.

We as parents have let our children down. It is our job to educate our children. Not the government's.

Congressman Rob Bishop Advises Utah Senate: Common Core is a Hook

Congressman Rob Bishop, Utah, is the second signature on Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer's letter to United States Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, raising concerns about Common Core. 

From Congressman Rob Bishop in his February, 2013 address to the Utah Senate.  At min. 12:17, he addresses questions from the Utah legislature concerning Common Core.  He advises the Utah Senate that they “should be concerned” and that Common Core is a hook that used “Stimulus Money” to hook states into the federal agenda for education. He also explains how having no budget has allowed this hook.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Homescshooling Advocate: Common Core Abandons Classics for 'Reading Executive Orders from President Obama'

This video from the Daily Caller and the HSLDA is only 15 minutes long and has lots of facts about Common Core. Everyone has 15 minutes to learn about what's happening with their children's and grandchildren's education.

Kristi Noem's Signature Missing from Rep. Luetekmeyer's Letter to Arne Duncan

A few weeks ago, we shared with you a letter from Representative Blaine Luetkemeyer, (MO) to Arne Duncan, US Secretary of Education. 

In this letter he expresses serious concerns with the manner in which the US Department of Education has involved itself with Common Core standards. The letter also notes the highly irregular process used to change the Congressional FERPA allowing the sharing of individual, personally identifiable student records.

We asked you to contact Representative Kristi Noem's office encouraging her to co-sign the letter. 33 Representatives signed the letter. Please note that Kristi Noem's signature is absent from the letter.

He also notes that, "Because states opted-in to Common Core standards, there is little Congress can do to provide relief from these burdensome and misguided standards.  Instead the ability to opt-out of these standards lies within the state."

We have much work to do. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Teacher Writes Legislator after Retiring Due to Common Core

If you read nothing else about Common Core today, please take the time to read this letter to a Utah Legislator from a retired teacher. 

Utahans Against Common Core has shared this letter and it is a must read.

Teacher Writes Legislator after Retiring Due to Common Core

“There is much more involved here, than just a list of standards… if all the facts were known, it would be more than obvious that the legislature would make the move to abandon Common Core.”
- Recently retired Utah Teacher Margaret Wilkin
Margaret Wilkin has given permission to post her letter to the Utah legislature.  She retired last year from Canyons District.

May 4, 2013
Senator Aaron Osmond
South Jordan, Utah 84095

Dear Aaron,

… On March 21, 2013, I was asked to return to the elementary school from which I retired last June, to give a presentation at their Literacy Night.  Some of the parents and students I taught in the past came down to the room where I was to say hello. In the course of the conversation, a mother of one of the smartest and most conscientious students I have ever had, said that her daughter was struggling in math.
I was surprised, but told her mother that teachers are required to teach to a rigid schedule and must move on to the next unit of study, even if the students don’t understand it.
Sticking to the schedule is more important than spending the time making sure everyone understands.

The Common Core: A Poor Choice for States

The Common Core:  A Poor Choice for States
by Joy Pullmann*

A few highlights:

  • Public dialogue on the Common Core is necessary to ensure high quality.
  • Research has demonstrated that education standards have no effect on student achievement.
  • No state, school district, or even school has ever used the Common Core. It has no track record.
  • Comparing the Common Core to the Core Knowledge Foundation’s metrics immediately reveals a quality gap.
  • Georgia testing officials said previous tests cost taxpayers $5 per student per year, but Common Core tests would cost $22 per student per year.
  • No one really knows how much it will cost to implement the Common Core. Most states did not estimate costs before adopting it.
  • The U.S. Department of Education has issued regulations allowing the sharing of personally identifiable student information without parent consent.
  • U.S. schools obviously need to improve. But will the Common Core help? No. On the contrary, it contains many harmful provisions, and its full effects are yet unknown.

*   About the Author
Joy Pullmann ( is a research fellow of The Heartland Institute and
managing editor of School Reform News, a national monthly publication. In that capacity, she
has interviewed and produced podcasts with many of the leading figures in school reform. She
previously was assistant editor for American Magazine at the American Enterprise Institute.
Pullmann has been published by the New York Times, Washington Examiner, The Weekly
Standard, Washington Times, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Salt Lake Tribune,,
National Review Online, Real Clear Policy, and various other U.S. newspapers and online media
outlets. She has written a series of Research & Commentary reports on the Parent Trigger, a new
school reform idea sweeping the country, and is coauthor with Joseph L. Bast of “Design
Guidelines for Parent Triggers” (Heartland Institute, 2012).
Pullmann has taught middle and high school students history, literature, and debate and has
written high school public speaking curriculum. She has traveled nationwide to speak at
prominent venues including the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the National
Right to Life Convention, and statewide education conferences. She has been a guest on
numerous talk shows, including the Wall Street Journal’s Opinion Journal.
Pullmann graduated from the Hillsdale College honors program with an English major and
journalism concentration. She received statewide competitive collegiate honors for her reporting
and commentary and ranked in the top 25 nationally in parliamentary debate.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Young People of America Changing Their Schools

I know the fight against Common Core is not necessarily a fight for Christians only. These young people have made a video that will open the eyes of many as to what is going on in our public schools. 
Where have we adults been?
From their website:
"Christianity is being frozen out in America. It is time for a thaw! Without a doubt, Christian youth are living in an increasingly anti-Christian culture. This isn’t the America that we, as parents and grandparents, once knew."
"The youth of Reach America have created a five-minute video entitled, “The Thaw.” It is their call to youth and their parents across America to join them as they bring Christ and our Judeo-Christian values back to our country."

Monday, May 6, 2013

Health Care in Sioux Falls Schools Part 2 - Parental Consent Form

Health Care in Sioux Falls Schools Part 2
   Parental Consent Form

I want to share with you the parental consent form for your child to be seen in the Falls Community Health Clinic located in your child's school.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Pressure on Utah Governor's Office is Relentless

Utah school board denies guv’s Common Core request

Utah has been on the frontlines of the battle against Common Core. I want to share this story from the Salt Lake City Tribune, dated Friday May 3rd.

'Christine Kearl, the governor’s education advisor,...She said the Governor’s Office hears daily complaints about the Common Core.'
' "It’s become very political as I’m sure you’re all aware," Kearl said. "We’re under attack. We try to get back to people and let them know we support the Common Core and support the decision of the state school board, but this has just become relentless." '

Every day people say to me, "What can we do?" "It's a done deal." This story proves the power of the people. We need to be relentless in contacting our elected officials. I know we are all busy. But if we all commit to one day a week, contacting an elected official, be it a local school board member, state legislator, or the governor, imagine the power in that. You can use the same email for all the people you want to contact if you choose. Once you have the body of the letter written, you can just copy and paste. I think every elected official that represents us, should be afforded the right to answer the same questions. 

Here is the link to Governor Daugaard's
Office of the Governor
500 E Capitol Ave
Pierre, SD 57501

Here is the link to all South Dakota Legislators' email. Just choose the legislator you want to contact.

Don't know who your legislators are or what district you are in?
Here is the link to find your district and legislators.

Here is Representative Kristi Noem's contact information:
1323 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Toll-Free Phone: (855) 225-2801

Here is Senator Tim Johnson's contact information:
135 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington DC 20510
(202) 224-5842

Here is Senator John Thune's contact information:
United States Senate SD-511
Washington, DC 20510

Toll-Free: 1-866-850-3855

Share your concerns and ask whatever questions you would like them to answer about Common Core State Standards. As always, be respectful whenever you are contacting any official about Common Core State Standards.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Health Care Clinics in Sioux Falls Schools

Need a Nurse? No problem! Leave the Classroom and Go to the Clinic

When this first hit the news that the school district was adding clinics to the schools - I had never heard of Common Core or Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan's philosophy about the role he believes schools are to play in the community. You can hear Arne in his own words hereI can tell you I had an awful feeling in the pit of my stomach and knew where it was leading. 

One of the quotes in the story I found probably the most interesting was, "We try to go into areas that are high need, vulnerable populations. The benefit is the child loses less educational time,” said Kendall. The key words are "vulnerable" and "loses less educational time." 

"Vulnerable" - The district sees busy, working families as a great place to start taking over the role of the family. I have never known a child who is sick, to not want their mom. The role of the family is being taken away - the comfort family brings to children is being removed. That always knowing that mom or dad has your back. Instead of mom or dad or grandma or grandpa coming to the rescue and taking the child to the doctor and then home, the school has taken over that role. 

"The benefit is the child loses less educational time...If the child isn’t ill enough to miss school they can be sent to the clinic.  They don’t miss as much class time,” As if time in school is the most important thing in a child's life. I contend that parents know their child best. How often has your child said they don't feel well without showing any symptoms only to spike a fever a few hours later? I contend that if a child says they don't feel well, and there are no clinical symptoms yet, the school will be the ones to determine whether or not the child goes home. Not the parent who knows their child best. And if a child is "coming down" with something, how much education are they getting? Where's the benefit in that?

Then, these clinics are open to the public year round as are the Community Centers located in the public schools. Arne Duncan must be so proud of the Sioux Falls Public School District.

An Undocumented Goal: Global Citizenship

We already know that Common Core State Standards and the International Baccalaureate share the same ten educational goals. But CCSS puts a greater emphasis on "transforming America." Sound familiar?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

National Sexuality Education Standards - Core Content and Skills, K-12

OK, so I just discovered this little secret of Common Core. 

And before you say it is not a part of Common Core, because it is "A Special Publication of the Journal of School Health," please go to page 6 where it says, "The National Sexuality Education Standards were further informed by the work of the CDC’s Health Education Curriculum Analysis Tool(HECAT)3; existing state and international education standards that include sexual health content; the Guidelines for Comprehensive Sexuality Education: Kindergarten – 12th Grade; and the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics, recently adopted by most states."

And before you say, "We won't allow it in our schools. We will go to the school board." Local control is gone. On page 6, "Specifically, the National Sexuality Education Standards were developed to address the inconsistent implementation of sexuality education nationwide and the limited time allocated to teaching the topic." The whole idea behind Common Core is to create universal standards.

I wanted to know who would think they know what information was appropriate and at what age my child should learn this "appropriate" information. Here's what I found out about a few of those on the Advisory Committee. I'll let you research the rest.

Nora Gelperin, was the recipient of the national 2010 Mary Lee Tatum Award from the Association of Planned Parenthood Leaders in Education!

Deb Hauser has been with Advocates for Youth for almost 20 years, first as Director of the Support Center for School-based Health Care, then as Executive Vice President. In January 2012, Deb became the organization’s fourth President and Executive Director, representing Advocates with the media, funders and colleagues organizations and speaking nationally and internationally about young people’s rights to honest sexual health information, confidential sexual health services and equitable social and economic opportunities.

Robert McGarry, EdD
Director of Training and Curriculum Development
Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN)

Cynthia Lam, Sex, Etc. Teen Editorial Staff
Been writing for Sex, Etc since she was 14, she's now 17.

Then I wanted to know what information these people thought was age-appropriate. Oh my goodness. Do you remember in the movie "Kindergarten Cop", when the little boy walks up to Arnold Schwarzenegger and says, "Boys have a penis and girls have a vagina."? I don't know about you, but I was shocked and found it funny at the same time. I remember thinking, 'boy, his parents have shared a lot of information with him.' Parents will no longer have the right to decide what is developmentally and age appropriate for their individual child. 

On page 12 it says
       "By the end of 2nd grade, students should be able to: Use proper names for body parts, including male and female anatomy." 

On page 14 it says:
      "By the end of 5th grade, students should be able to: Describe male and female reproductive systems including body parts and their functions. Identify medically-accurate information about female and male reproductive anatomy.  Define sexual orientation as the romantic attraction of an individual to someone of the same gender or a different gender."

On page 9 under "Guiding Values and Principles"

"Instruction by qualified sexuality education teachers is essential for student achievement." 
Wouldn't that be the parents? Who decides who is "qualified"?    

"Students need opportunities to engage in cooperative and active (I underlined those two words) learning strategies, and sufficient time must be allocated for students to practice (I underlined that one too) skills relating to sexuality education."
What does that mean? Something like this

And I just have to highlight this principle:
Students need multiple opportunities and a variety of assessment strategies to determine their achievement of the sexuality education standards and performance.

I know this is already in many of our schools. This is sex-education on steroids. You can download your own copy of the standards here.

I have only highlighted a very few of the items I, as a mom, find objectionable. You may not have any issues with the standards, principles and skills that children will be taught as a part of the Common Core Standards. I'm not asking you to agree with me. After all these are only minimum standards. Page 6 -  Outline what, based on research and extensive professional expertise, are the minimum, essential content and skills for sexuality education K–12 given student needs, limited teacher preparation and typically available time and resources. I just want you to be aware of the details.

If Common Core is so wonderful, why did they bring it in the back door without legislation? Education we are paying for, without representation.

Check back, as I am researching the companies that are creating curriculum to meet these standards.