Friday, March 29, 2013

Common Core Is NOT OK Rally Summary


And so it was that Wednesday, March 27, somewhere between 150 and 200 people came to the Oklahoma State Capitol to rally against the Common Core State Standards!  We were so grateful to look out and see such a fabulous crowd!  We know the time and energy it takes to leave your home and put aside your day to do something like this and we truly appreciate your willingness to work with us to stop the de-humanization and de-localization of public education.

I'm not going to take the time today to rehash all the reasons why we object to the Common Core in this post, but I will make sure that those of you who wish to have ammunition to give your friends, family members and neighbors, can get that here - in a one stop shop of sorts!

A brief list of Common Core educational materials

Here is a link to our one page information sheet called, "What Oklahomans Need To Know About Common Core State Standards".  If you're not in Oklahoma and wish to have something more generic, please use this handout from our friends at the Truth in American Education website.

Here is the paper that really helped to spread the word about CCSS, "Common Core State Standards, An Introduction To Marxism 101"  This should help you put the background together on where the Common Core came from - it's political background and who's behind the push.

For those of you interested also in the data collection aspect, our paper, "How Much Data Is Enough Data? What happens to privacy when bureaucracies exceed their scope?" might be of interest.  We also have another one page information sheet called, "What Oklahomans Need To Know About The P20 Council" that you can hand out to those seeking information.

A number of media outlets were represented at the Rally.  Below, are posted the links to the stories the rally generated.


Educators Protest New Guidelines At State House (added 4/1) - I totally forgot to post this video/story from NewsChannel 4.  I thought their reporting was absolutely great!  Both sides, no spin.  Two thumbs up!

Lawmakers Urged To Reject Proposed Nationwide Academic Standards - this was a video from our Daily Oklahoman.  We thought this video - and the news story - very fair.

Protestors Rally Against New School Curriculum - this was from our FOX affiliate.  Not bad, but didn't really get to the meat of the matter, just more about 'federal takeover'.  Also, in this story, I lost 3 of my children!  My husband, who watched the story with me said, "Do we get to pick which ones we lose?" (David and I have 5 children, not the 2 depicted in the story!)

Opponents of 'Common Core Standards' Education Rally At State Capitol.  This was from the AP and instead of doing their own reporting, LOCALLY OWNED KWTV-Channel 9 picked up the AP report.  So did Glenn Beck!  The reporting in this 'article' (if you can call it that) was SO atrocious that Glenn Beck picked it up off the wire and skewered it on the radio!  This was HORRIBLE.  I imagine News9 will lose a number of viewers over this - they lost me!  It was so bad in fact, that I penned this reply:
Hunter (a very liberal hate-speak blogger), you might get some sleep...that might help your disposition a bit. This 'loon' would like to ask you a question, "Would you buy a car sight unseen?" These standards were put into Oklahoma law before they were even available to read. So, you're all for making school kids Guinea Pigs in an education experiment that could affect them for the rest of their lives? You must not like kids very much! Here's another question for you, "Would you show up to buy a car without knowing how much it cost?" I wouldn't. I research that kind of stuff pretty thoroughly. We had no idea how much the Common Core would cost before they were enacted into law and two years later, our superintendent simply said she anticipated low costs. Since that time schools have had to apply for eRate grants and raise school bonds to pay for the technology costs to give the tests tied to the Standards. You must not care about your property taxes much, or the fact that the superintendent just asked for about 140 MILLION dollars more for education spending. Will that go to teachers? No. Will that go to kids? NO. It will go to buying computer and testing software and wiring. You must not be for more money in the classroom are you? I do hope you don't call yourself an advocate for Public Schools or education or children. We at ROPE care about teachers and students - that's why we say COMMON CORE IS NOT OK!
Here are the videos from the rally in order of speaker appearance, if you would like to watch and/or pass around:

Jenni White and Representative Gus Blackwell 

Representative David Brumbaugh

Reverend Paul Blair 

Tracey Montgomery (Oklahoma Coordinator - ParentalRights.org) 

Linda Murphy (longtime educator and owner of Education and Training Services)

Rally effects:

All Rally attendees were asked to write their name, address and phone number on three red postcards with our anti-Common Core logo on the other side.  They were then, at the rally, asked to take those postcards and deliver them to the offices of their Senator and Representative and the office of Governor Mary Fallin.  At the end of the rally, Lynn, Danna and Julia and I went to the Governor's office to drop off our cards.  We were met by the very unhappy office assistant who gruffly took the cards, timestamped them and plopped them onto a stack about 1 1/2 to 2 inches high.

In the event people don't remember, our bill (HB1907), run by Representative Gus Blackwell, to create a task force simply to study the cost of the Common Core, passed its committee hearing unanimously.  It was blocked from a hearing on the floor by Speaker T.W. Shannon at the behest of our Governor who is the Vice-Chair of the NGA.  After all, it wouldn't look good for the Vice Chair of the National Governor's Association to start trying to kill the Common Core when the NGA was one of two private, non-governmental trade organizations developing and pushing out the standards?  Oh, Representative Shannon offered Representative Blackwell an interim study to study all aspects of the Common Core in return, so we should have been happy with that and moved on to 'more important' topics, apparently, but of course, we don't quit that easily.  We immediately began setting up the rally and taking to Twitter and Facebook, calling the politics of our Governor and Speaker out into the open.

Representative Blackwell began authoring a House Joint Resolution against the Common Core - HJR1011 - which is a truly excellent piece of legislation.  As soon as it is written onto the Oklahoma State Legislature webpage, we'll provide the link.  Currently, we are attempting to get as many House authors on the bill as possible.  We are even attempting to get an SJR.  We have an author, my State Senator Ron Sharp and even a few Senators to sign on with him, but our Oklahoma Senate seems to be the toughest place to get good, conservative, liberty-minded legislation passed - ever.

Yesterday, Representative Blackwell called me to tell me he had heard from "a number" of legislators who stopped by to the rally to listen.  They expressed their concerns over Common Core and asked him for more information on the topic.  Not only that, but Rep. Blackwell visited with T.W. Shannon (who, we found out, will be a GUEST on the GLENN BECK program in the near future!) who told him he would make sure our HJR got to the floor.  This is great because our SJR says that implementation of Common Core will STOP until we have satisfied at least 6 different categories of inquiry on the topic!  

In closing, we are extraordinarily happy about the rally and expect that God will multiply our efforts toward restoring local public education!  We are grateful for all speakers and participants and suggest that, as many of us know, legislators will only see the light when they feel the heat.  We MUST continue to push this issue out there as often as possible - into the media and with our elected representatives bypassed by the initial legislation!  Let's not rest until Common Core is gone because COMMON CORE IS NOT OK!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Oklahoma State Department of Education Changes the Rules


This morning (March 25, 2013), Danna, Julia and I ventured to the Oklahoma State Department of Education to make public comment on current proposed rule changes.  Yes, it was as exciting as it sounds. 

This morning there were a number of rule changes on the schedule:
Revocation of certificates, student exceptions and exemptions related to graduation requirements for end-of-instruction exams (ACE), Implementation of a system of school improvement and accountability (A-F), Procedures for review and Implementation of Academic Content and Process Standards (which revoked all state standards in lieu of new rules), Administrative requirements of teacher certification, certification for languages with no subject area examination, Charter school surety bonds, and statewide virtual charter school board.
We went to address the rule change for the process standards (now either Common Core or a blend of Common Core and science or history).  More on that later.

There was a large crowd, 99% of which were there to protest the A-F grading system in some way.  I don't know how many superintendents/administrators signed up to speak, but here is a pretty comprehensive list:
  • Chris Johnson, Tulsa Public Schools
  • Corey Holland, Cache High School Principal, former member of the Oklahoma House
  • Kevin Burn, Sapulpa Public Schools
  • Lisa Muller, Jenks Assist. Supt.
  • Lary Smith, Deputy Supt., Sapulpa
  • Roger Hill, Asst. Supt., Altus Public Schools
  • Steven Dunham, Supt., Comanche Public Schools
  • Loyd Snow, Supt. Sand Springs Public Schools
  • Rocky Birchfield, Fairview Public Schools
  • David Goin, Supt. Edmond Public Schools
The only two commenters that were NOT superintendents were myself and Sarah Baker, the legislative chair for the Oklahoma PTA. Parents themselves had no buy in on this issue?  No one had a buy in on this issue but Supes?

Most ALL superintendent's comments centered around the fact that Dr. Barresi had been asked to make a public comment on the A-F study conducted by the researchers from OU and OSU, but she has not, frustrating these superintendents.  Most of them commented how unfair the A-F categories were in some way because of the fact that many are simply arbitrary.  Several mentioned that they didn't care for Florida writing Oklahoma education policy.  At any rate, there were a number of speakers that even passed on their turn, so it is obvious there is extreme concern out there in the districts regarding the A-F.  A couple of commenters relayed their frustration over the fact that their previous concerns about A-F had not been addressed in any earlier re-write (gosh, we feel their pain!).  Several suggested scrapping them altogether and to that ROPE says a hearty, "Amen"!

My comments were sparse and centered around the fact that if categories can't be replicated, the whole instrument is sunk because if it doesn't use replicable categories, it's not statistically valid and if it's not statistically valid it can't be compared among or over schools.  My original comments to the board are here and my original write up of the OU/OSU research is here.

In the end, it wasn't long until the superintendents were finished and the rules regarding curricula/standards were available for comment.  Danna and myself were the ONLY ones to speak on our concern for the new rule changes to address state standards.  Since finding out that, though Dr. Barresi had touted using David Barton to help write the US History standards, Oklahoma history standards refer to our REPUBLIC as a Constitutional Democracy, we felt it important to attend the meeting and provide comment on the proposed rule changes.  All rule changes and impact statements are here. Not only that, but, of course, we are gravely concerned about the addition of the Common Core to the state standards in not only English and Math, but throughout the Social Studies and Science standards as well.  This is Dr. Barresi's (by way of Jeb Bush's Foundation for Educational Excellence) infamous C3 initiative - combined Common Core and state standards.  We wonder how well that little experiment will work come test time, but what can we say?

Unfortunately, we didn't understand the process of DOE rule making apparently.  We should have come in with prepared remarks instead of feeling as though we would get any questions answered - which is exactly what we thought might happen - we thought we might get the proposed rules explained to us.  Oh, no, nothing like that, you're just given 3 minutes to tell what you have to tell the DOE attorneys and then you're excused.  Very unhelpful really and certainly not very satisfying when you're told after 3 minutes "TIME". 

Here are the remarks I penned as I sat through the litany of  State Superintendents lamenting A-F;
I am a mother who removed all her children from Quail Creek Elementary because of Common Core math.  I believe the rule change regarding curriculum and instruction is unclear.  It would be exceptionally helpful to know the current process to better understand the context of the proposed rule change/s but those are never mentioned anywhere in the documents, nor is there a hyperlink to the old rules.
A citizen advisory committee is apparently to be implemented, yet as a parent and an education researcher it was nearly impossible to find out about the rules changes in the first place without visiting the OSDE website on a regular basis.
Home school parents wouldn't be able to get information from their public school as to a change in the curriculum standards, according to current rules, since Superintendents receive the changes to the standards and then disseminate them to their schools.  This is important because the Common Core State Standards unfairly effect home school and private schools as well.
There is nothing in the proposed rules to address how parents will be made aware of the standards changes.  These methods need to be addressed publicly as if for no other reason than for the public to believe they are being considered as represented in their representative government.  How WILL parents and students - not stakeholders! - I genuinely detest that term;  The people that use schools across Oklahoma are parents and students.  Stakeholders are the Chamber of Commerce who think they have a say as to how students are educated in order that they may use them as workforce assurance to incoming businesses.  This is the wrong reason to educate our state's children.
How will parents and students be made aware of the standards after adoption?  I was not even aware that the US History standards in which America is referred to as a Constitutional Democracy - were available for public review or I certainly would have made comment.  Please make the rules changes more clear by adding the previous rules to the discussion thread, and provide a manner in which the rules will be disseminated across the state.  Thank you for your time...
So, there you go.  That was ALL that was said about the changes to the curriculum and instruction part of the rules.  Though I disagree highly with the A-F rules, it frustrates me greatly to see no superintendent or others commenting on rules that effect what kids learn!  Isn't that what EDUCATION is all about?  I'm pretty sure it is - not giving schools letter grades.  But then again, maybe that's why public education is flailing so...school administrators don't really pay attention to the standards, just how a rule is going to affect their bottom line?  Don't forget, the results of the A-F accountability formula will be used to determine which schools are D's and F's.  Those schools will be taken over by the state and their funding cut in different areas until they are remediated. 

As I complained about this situation bitterly to Lynn on the phone (our counterpart who actually has to work at her store for a living instead of gallivanting around to various state meetings!), she said she believed that it wouldn't be until the CCSS are cemented into place with all the time and labor-intensive PARCC tests to 'assess' them, and the high stakes teacher reviews and threat of takeover by the state department, that the superintendents would 'wake up' and realize they'd been sold down the river yet again by educratic numbnut control freaks.  Gosh, it seems easier to me to get it now...

Prepared Remarks to Ok State Board on A-F Grading System





Prepared Remarks
Oklahoma State Department of Education
School Board Meeting
February 28, 2013
Jenni White
President
Restore Oklahoma Public Education
jenni@RestoreOkPublicEducation.com

Board Members and Guests,

I taught in public school nearly 10 years.  I loved teaching.  My classroom was my own little microcosm of the world where I interacted with all sorts of young people in all sorts of stages of intellectual development representing many different layers of society.

I can remember standing in the hall across from my classroom at Independence Charter Middle School - where I taught Science on the same team with my mother, who taught English – leaning against the lockers, watching the kids go by and thinking there really couldn’t be a better job.  I got to interact with kids – which was good AND bad some days; sometimes all in the same class period!   I got to see recognition of a particular concept light up their faces.  I got to re-learn some of the concepts I taught them and see those in a new light.  I loved sharing what I knew with others and making it new to them.

I quit teaching nearly 10 years ago to stay home with our oldest son.  When I left, my responsibilities included; turning in yearly lesson plans, meeting the Priority Academic Student Skills (PASS objectives) for my grade level in science and meeting the needs of parents, students and my building administration to the best of my ability.

I wouldn’t return to teach in the public system today.

The teachers I have known and worked with were all self-starters.  Teachers really have to be.  You can’t possibly handle a room of 7th graders AND teach a lesson if you’re not.   Teaching can’t survive micromanaging.  Ten years ago, we teachers used to grouse about assemblies, because, after turning in a yearly lesson plan you worked all summer to put together, you couldn’t possibly miss a day or even an hour and still have the kids prepared to leave the classroom knowing what they needed to know.  Not just to pass a test – but to be where they needed to be developmentally.  If lesson plans are thrown out of whack by snow days and assemblies, what in the world happens when you add state and federal teaching mandates?

Education ‘reform’ today is killing the teaching profession.  Accountability is all well and good, but teacher accountability should rest with the building principal and finally, the superintendent and school board – not a school grade calculated utilizing factors over which many teachers have no control.  How in the world do you keep a high school student in school?  Chain him or her to a desk?  How many factors can contribute to a child’s poor grade on a test?  How many of those are the responsibility of the teacher?  How can nebulous factors ever be quantifiable?

This A-F grading system is clearly not appropriate.  For all the lip service we give to STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and its level of importance in the lives of American children in the ‘21st Century’, to think our state can’t understand and/or apply the basic tenet of Scientific Inquiry to a system that will affect every child and every student in public school in Oklahoma, seems completely inconsistent.   Many categories for calculation in this A-F grading system are not replicable.  The first tenet of scientific inquiry is that the system be replicable.  If it is not replicable, it is not valid.  How can you justify grading a school on a system that isn’t valid?  How is it the state’s job to grade a school?  Isn’t that the job of the community which it serves? 

Recently, a letter released from the Department of Education by Dr. David N. Figlio (as released in an Oklahoman editorial) indicated support for the A-F grading system.  Of note, the letter didn’t speak to the validity of Oklahoma’s grading system of which there is dispute, but more to the ‘idea’ of a grading system.  In fact, in an earlier paper, “What’s in a Grade?  School Report Cards and the Housing Market”, Dr. Figlio’s research suggests,
 “school rankings under these systems tend to be quite unstable”.
He goes on to say,
“…school accountability measures such as the Florida system and the new federal system are largely unrelated to the school’s contribution to student performance and are likely measured with considerable noise.”
Accountability in ANY taxpayer funded system  is absolute necessity.  Micromanagement through the employ of non-valid systems of measurement is not.

Let’s step back here a bit.  Instead of following the education ‘reform’ measures of other states and those prescribed by the federal government in order to get a waiver from the already overreaching No Child Left Behind law, find out what works in Oklahoma – what works on local levels in local communities.  If we can’t do that – if we refuse to do that – we will continue to bleed good teachers from the system and micromanage public schools out of existence.

Friday, March 22, 2013

"A REPUBLIC Ma'am - If you can keep it!"






For those of you who have been educated in public schools and have not done any outside reading on your own, the man above is Benjamin Franklin - a signer of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States - an American Founding Father.

I say this in the most snarky possible way because until the other day, I had not read the 'new' Oklahoma Social Studies Standards, adopted by the State School Board in March of last year. 

For those of you who don't know, ROPE was begun when myself (Jenni) and my friend Julie McKenzie realized that young adults in America must not have been taught the fundamentals of US Government, its founding and the Constitution if we were to expand government the way we did under Bush's last term and then go on to elect Barrack Obama. 

If you don't know, our current state superintendent (Janet Barresi) told ROPE (when we complained bitterly to her about the Common Core State Standards) we shouldn't worry our silly heads about this because we would just LOVE the History standards she was working.  We would be proud of these standards because she would have prominent historian David Barton be a part of the working group to create them. 

ROPE wasn't aware there was a working group until November of last year. We didn't even know the standards had been approved until yesterday! Yes, I'm sure the Department of Education put them out for public comment, but how odd is it that a watchdog group dedicated to public education wouldn't know that the state history standards had been completed and were up for review? If we didn't know, WHAT PARENT/TAX PAYER DID?  

In fact, there is a rule change about the Oklahoma State Standards open for public comment currently (through March 25, 2013) on the State Department of Education website.  Did you know that?  Yes, here is the link, right here:   Here is the link to ALL of the current (well current until the rule change is decided) standards.  C3 is Dr. Barresi's way of taking Common Core State Standards and marrying them to standards produced in Oklahoma, producing our own (well, by way of Jeb Bush in Florida of course).  We get the best of both worlds that way, right?  Well NO.  I'll talk about the science standards in another blog!



At any rate, after meeting with David Barton last November at his Pro-Family Legislative Conference, he told us he had come to Oklahoma at Janet Barresi's invitation and had been part of the working group, but he didn't really contribute anything. He said he told the teachers assembled they needed to include American Exceptionalism in their standards and they refused.  

 American Exceptionalism is the notion that America is exceptional because we a Republic - a nation with a Constitution that protects citizens FROM their government by laws - and that our laws are derived by our CREATOR unlike those in any other nation in the world in order to impart upon us NATURAL rights that are not given by the government, nor can they be taken away by the government.  

This is more than frustrating!  How can a teacher object to that?  American history teachers don't WANT the government to be able to protect citizens from itself?  They don't want students to know they live in a country that protects their personal, individual rights through a form of government found in no other country in the world ?  Here is the video where he discusses this with Glenn Beck on his election program from last year

I can see why Mr. Barton was so upset. Please read the standards when you have a minute.

Our biggest complaint is on page 11.  It appears the ENTIRE set of standards is predicated on the following notion:


"The goal of civics and government is to develop literate, informed, competent, and responsible citizens who are politically aware and active and committed to the fundamental values and principles of American constitutional democracy." 

What? America is a Constitutional Democracy? NO. It is a Constitutional REPUBLIC. There is an ENORMOUS difference between the two. No wonder Barton wasn't happy with what he was hearing.  This is the same exact thing my co-founder Julie McKenzie and I fought when we first started ROPE!  We found this same nonsense in our OLD Oklahoma State Standards and tied the phrase right back to the Progressive Policy Institute!!!  Basically, Superintendent Barresi told us one thing and absolutely DID ANOTHER!  We don't have 'new' standards 'informed' (to use one of the 'educrat' terms) by David Barton, but a re-hash of the same old tired standards Oklahoma had before which are teaching children INACCURATE information!

Why are we teaching this to kids in America - especially in OKLAHOMA - the reddest state in the UNION!?  Maybe you'd better talk to our state school board and find out!


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

NGA, FEE, CCSSO = A Bunch of BS For OK


Today was a banner day in Oklahoma.  Today was the day the Speaker of the House of Representatives - the new, up-and-coming conservative Speaker who will be speaking at CPAC next week because he's so conservative - killed the Common Core State Standards Cost Task Force bill authored by Gus Blackwell (HB1907). 

HB1907 passed out of the General Government committee unanimously, February 28th.  It was to go to the Calendar Committee (newly organized by Speaker Shannon...why would we want to have accountability to the taxpayers for what gets on the House calendar held by ONE person?  Why shouldn't we spread that accountability over a total of 18 people?) for a vote on whether or not it would be heard on the floor of the House.  That week, we were told by Calendar Committee Chair, Representative Pam Peterson, that Speaker Shannon was holding all Task Force bills until other bills could be heard.

Fortuitously, directly after that meeting, we saw Representative Shannon walking in the hall.  I practically galloped up next to him, and asked him to give HB1907 to the Calendar Committee because the Common Core had been put into law before the standards were even written, so of course there had never been a study done on the costs of the initiative.  He looked at us and said, "I don't think you'll have any problems with that bill" before he walked off saying, "Now don't have a bunch of your people calling, asking me to put it on the Calendar.  We'll get there."

We thought this was great news and prepared to move on to lobbying House members on our bill HB1989 to protect student privacy by preventing certain types of public school data collection and sharing (this passed out of the House unanimously March 11).

I was at "school" with my children today (Classical Conversations home school families meet once a week altogether in one place to review our lessons) when I got a frenetic phone call from Lynn.  She told me she and Danna and Julia (all at the Capitol) had gone to check on the status of HB1907 and found that it would NOT leave Speaker Shannon's office.  Speaker Shannon had killed the bill - the bill ROPE has been working on for THREE LONG YEARS - the bill developed out of our four year study on the Common Core!

Details were hard to get via phone and email, but apparently Speaker Shannon was told EARLY ON in the session BY THE GOVERNOR NOT to HEAR any Common Core bills and he was going to do exactly that.

Let these thoughts sink in:
  • The Governor of the reddest state in the union, tells the Speaker NOT to hear a bill put forward by four housewives and mothers - simple TAXPAYERS, not lobbyists or organizations who are paid to see that bills pass or fail.
  • The newly-minted Speaker tells self-same housewives, mothers and taxpayers he doesn't see a problem with getting their bill to the floor!  Why?  Apparently he knew all along he wasn't going to put the bill on the floor of the House for a vote. 
  • The Governor is AFRAID for Common Core bills to be heard.  Why?
Let's think about this a bit more:

Governor Fallin is the Vice-Chair of the National Governor's Association.  So what?  Well, the NGA is a PRIVATE membership organization not subject to the Open Meetings Act that has PUSHED THE COMMON CORE STATE STANDARDS FROM THE BEGINNINGIn fact, the NGA and the Council of Chief State School Officers are the two organizations that have pushed the Common Core State Standards down to the states!  Look in the upper right hand corner of the CCSS home page to see BOTH their logos!  Their list of Corporate Sponsors is ENORMOUS and contains most of the organizations supplying funding for the Common Core initiative.




Janet Barresi is a member of the CCSSO, a private membership organization - like the NGA - that has no oversight nor accountability to taxpayers for the programs they work with State Superintendents to implement in states.  CCSSO partners with Bill Gates Foundation, Pearson, ACT, K12 (currently embroiled in a lawsuit for overselling investors on student achievement to inflate their stock prices) and many others - again many private donors to the Common Core initiative.

In addition, as we have reported previously a number of times, Superintendent Barresi is a member of Jeb Bush's Foundation for Excellence in Education (FEE), Chiefs for Change program.  The FEE is soundly in the corner of having the federal government administrating LOCAL education - very small government stuff (snark).  In addition, FEE and the Chiefs have long touted the Common Core State Standards.  Jeb Bush and the FEE have written numerous education policy initiatives here in Oklahoma as evidenced by a paper trail of emails turned over via an FOI request made by the Washington Post, which begs the question as to why Oklahoma taxpayers are paying for Florida education reforms - that don't work even in Florida???  Why are we paying a Superintendent to merely fire off emails to the FEE to get them to write Oklahoma education policy?

Let's sum up:
  • Most likely, Governor Fallin will NOT hear Common Core bills because she is afraid that after three years of lobbying, educating and studying we have enough votes to get a repeal of the Standards all the way to her desk.  Having a Common Core 'nullification' bill pass the House and Senate in Oklahoma would no doubt cause some real pain for the Governor in her role as Vice Chair of the NGA - one of the two main supporters of the Common Core.  The only plausible explanation here is that she MUST be more concerned about the future of her political career and her standing in the NGA than she is about Oklahoma children and taxpayers.  
  • Janet Barresi will not allow the Common Core to even be discussed at state board meetings let alone come to the floor of the House or Senate for a vote most probably because she couldn't DARE go against the FEE!  Why would she want to?  She has the fabulous, "I'm open to running for president so I can spread more of my BIG GOVERNMENT Republican Statism over the whole of America" Jeb Bush, also a speaker at CPAC this year in her hip pocket (or is it the other way around?)!  In addition, Dr. Barresi has lucrative contracts with Pearson and other Common Core addicts/vendors.  If they've been taking her to dinner, what else have they been doing?

Needless to say, both the Governor and the State Superintendent are FULLY PERSONALLY INVESTED IN THE COMMON CORE STATE STANDARDS.  What do you suppose the chances are of either of them hearing the clamoring of the grassroots activists, taxpayers, parents and others against the Common Core when all they can hear is the din of their burgeoning political careers surging in their ears?

This must stop.  Either Janet and Mary quit playing Hear No Common Core, See No Common Core, Speak no Common Core, or we piddly little taxpayers who are paying to advance their political careers find them primary candidates from another more altruistic branch of the monkey family.

ADDENDUM:  Representative Blackwell was told that if HB1907 was kept alive and passed the Senate and the House, the Governor would veto it.  He was then offered an interim study to pull the bill.  He would be in control of the interim study which would NOT occur in the the Common Education Committee and be allowed to continue over a number of days - in order to collect as much information as possible.  Representative Blackwell is a good man and his intentions are pure.  We are lucky to have him here in Oklahoma.  He took the interim study option, although we here at ROPE can't help but wonder what it would have done to the Governor's grassroots political capital to veto a bill to examine SPENDING in Oklahoma in the face of our national debt and economy.  It would have been nice to get all the legislators on record for their vote on the issue as well, but since Senate Education Committee Chair, Senator John Ford has consistently said he would NEVER hear a bill against the Common Core, it would have been quite the fight to even get it onto the Senate floor.  Makes you wonder doesn't it?  What exactly is the meaning of REPRESENTATIVE government?