A rally sponsored by Citizens Against Common Core was held in Sacramento on the steps of the Capitol. What is Common Core? In a nutshell, it’s a new, top-down national educational program that California for students in grades K-12 to Higher Education.
The Common Core program to be administered in California is an educational plan orchestrated by representatives of the Council of Chief State School Officers, the National Governors Association, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation – Bill & Melinda Foundation, and various members of the Obama administration and teachers’ union representatives. Many parents object that Common Core will operate through computers that will collect private and personal information about students and their families. Teachers complain they are being forced to teach a program that has never been tested on public school students. However, teachers have also been made aware that if they protest, they are in danger of losing their jobs.
Some objections focus on the literature portion of the Common Core program that reduces classic books from 80 percent of the school curriculum to only half. Said Anthony Esolen, a professor of Renaissance English Literature at Providence College in Rhode Island:
“What appalls me most about the standards … is the cavalier contempt for great works of human art and thought, in literary form. It is a sheer ignorance of the life of the imagination. We are not programming machines. We are teaching children. We are not producing functionaries, factory-like. We are to be forming the minds and hearts of men and women. Frankly, I do not wish to be governed by people whose minds and hearts have been stunted by a strictly utilitarian miseducation…. Do not train them to become apparatchiks in a vast political and economic system, but raise them to be human beings, honoring what is good and right, cherishing what is beautiful, and pledging themselves to their families, their communities, their churches, and their country.”
California has tinkered with many progressive education programs over the years, ranging from New Math to New New Math and Whole Language reading instead of phonics. At one time, urban educators wanted to include the street-slang language Ebonics into the public-school classroom. There was also the infamous CLAS Test — the California Learning Assessment System that was kept secret from parents until it was introduced into the classroom and word leaked out that the program leaned more on opinion, not actual learning.
A controversial element of CLAS described a scene where students were to choose who would be offered a spot in a lifeboat after a passenger ship sunk. With not enough room for every passenger to board the lifeboat, children were asked to choose who would board and who would not. When it was learned the correct response was an older man should be cast off because he had already lived his life, parents objected, refused to permit their children to take the CLAS program and very quietly, CLAS exited the state.
Parents now fear the national Common Core teaching program could return similar techniques to the classroom. A protest movement has been launched across the country. Many organizations are at work opposing Common Core, including TruthInAmericanEducation.com, Two Moms Against Common Core, Education Without Representation | lisa’s leaks and Hoosiers Against Common Core.
Former California school teacher Orlean Koehle taught speech, drama and journalism in the state’s classrooms for years. After raising six children and returning to the classroom, she was shocked by the many reforms and changes.
That prompted her to write, “Common Core — A Trojan Horse for Education Reform.” In it, she observes, “The federal government’s control over education can turn into something that has already been tried in other countries where our schools and universities are no longer centers for education, but now centers for propaganda and indoctrination.”
Yes, there ARE ways to stop Common Core!
|Click Here to Download the Opt Out Form|
California Privacy Protection Opt-Out Form
Please take notice that pursuant to California Education Code §§ 51513, 60614, 60615 and 20 U.S.C. § 1232(h), my child is to be exempted and excused, for the current school year (see request date below), from the following activities:
1) Taking any and all statewide performance assessments, including but not by way of limitation to, academic, achievement and annual tests, and Common Core interim and formative assessments, administered pursuant to sections 60600, et seq. (Calif. Educ. §60615);
2) The administration of any test, questionnaire, survey, examination or evaluation containing any questions or items relative to my child, or my personal beliefs or practices in sex, family life, morality, or religion (Calif. Educ. §51513);
3) The administration of any test, examination, or assessment as part of a statewide pupil assessment program relative to my child, or my personal beliefs or practices in sex, family life, morality, or religion, or any question designed to evaluate personal behavioral characteristics, including, but not limited to, honesty, integrity, sociability, or self-esteem (Calif. Educ. §60614);
4) The administration of any survey, analysis or evaluation that reveals:
(1) political affiliations or beliefs of my child or me,
(2) mental or psychological problems of my child or his or her family,
(3) sexual behavior or attitudes,
(4) illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior,
(5) critical appraisals of other individuals with whom respondents have close family relationships,
(6) legally recognized privileged or analogous relationships, such as those of lawyers, physicians, and ministers,
(7) religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs of my child or me, or
(8) income (other than that required by law to determine eligibility for participation in a program or for receiving financial assistance under such program.) (20 U.S. Code § 1232h)
Keep this signed, written notice on file in my child’s cumulative folder. This form supersedes all prior Opt-Out forms.
Child’s Name ________________________________ Grade Level ______ Date__________________
Parent/Guardian’s Name(s) _____________________________ ______________________________
Parent/Guardian’s Signature(s) ____________________________ ______________________________
Daytime/Evening Phone Number(s) _________________________ ______________________________
School Name ________________________ School District _____________________________
Received by (Print Name) _____________________________________________________________
Date Received _______________________
Instructions and Information on Using the California Privacy Protection Opt-Out Form
What to Do:
THE OPT OUT FORM MUST BE SUBMITTED EVERY YEAR
Applies to Public School K-12 Only
1) Make copies and share this California Privacy Protection Opt-Out Form with other parents.
2) Fill the form out to indicate that you do not allow your child to take any Common Core formative tests during the school year or a summative Common Core or other standardized test over any subjects at the end of the school year. Submitting this form for each student will help protect your child[ren]’s and family’s privacy.
3) Make two copies of the completed form. Then, sign and date each copy in ink.
4) Send the Opt Out form to the school Principal by Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested (the school’s signature serves as proof of receipt), or fax (with a fax transmittal sheet), or email, or other means which will show receipt by the school.
5) Keep one copy (with the proof of receipt) for your family and ask that the school keep a copy in your
child’s school records.
6) Make and give a copy to each of your child’s teachers. Keep a signed copy for yourself.
7) Ask to see your child’s records at least twice during the school year to monitor data being
collected and to verify that it is not being sent outside of the school district.
8) Educate your children to report to you attempts to collect personal information not related to
9) Resubmit a copy of this Opt-Out form for each child when you enroll them for the next school year.
10) Follow steps 1 through 9 above at the beginning of each school year.
To download more copies of this California Privacy Protection Opt-Out Form at pji.org.
For more information about Common Core Standards, standardized testing, your parental rights and
data collection, please visit: