" A sect of political doctors... standards of political orthodoxy... who brand with heresy all opinions but their own... pretenders to profound knowledge, yet ignorant of the most useful of all sciences- the science of human nature..." Alexander Hamilton 1792
I had one of the most educational experiences on June 9th at the Floral St. School in Shrewsbury Mass. Donna Colorio and her group The Common Core Forum, Hal Shurtlef from the NE chapter of The John Birch Society brought Dr. Duke Pesta to speak to over 150 area residents about the dangers of a new and very illegal federal program known as Common Core. Under Obama's Race To The Top plan for education states could receive millions in funding. Yet, despite three previous laws dating from 1965, 1970, and 1979 prohibiting federal intervention in local school curriculum the Obama Administration slipped into the stimulus bill a provision for Race To The Top. The states, like hungry baby birds couldn't wait to gobble it up.
There was only one hitch.
In order for the states to receive the money they had to adopt the federally mandated educational curriculum known as Common Core. It was a simple 'take it or leave it' proposition. Either take the money and Common Core or lose all federal funds for education.
For over two hours Dr. Duke Pesta spelled out the case against CC, the key players, the crony capitalism and the deals made between Governors, Bill Gates and the leading publishing company for text books in America, Pearson Publishing. This plan will reap billions for those involved, set a standard lower than the rest of the world for our students and The United States on a course to third world status in education.
Retired Literature Professor Sandra Stotsky of Massachusetts was one of the original members of a select panel to devise CC. However, after working on CC in 2010 she soon realized there was a problem with benchmarking the standards dictated by CC. In protest she refused to sign off on CC. Her name was quietly removed from the list of panelists and CC was approved.
The private groups who were the brain children of CC were The National Governor's Association, The Council for Chief State School Officers and Achieve Inc. The start up money was supplied by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundaton. It was the Gates Found. and Achieve Inc. that selected the panelists. There were no open meetings, no hearings for the public. They refuse access to their reports, findings and do not comment on any critiques. The NGA and CCSSO also would do the validation of all findings.
The problem with all of this was that few of the panelists had any actual educational experience. Neither did the Governors or Bill Gates. Dr. Pesta points out the difficulty in creating a curriculum and that there are few people who ARE actually qualified to do this. Currently there are only 22 qualified mathematicians who could create a new math curriculum. None of them were consulted.
Massachusetts has one of the highest standards in the nation for testing but four reports were used in creating CC to prove that states with high standards did not meet the standard developed under CC. Well, no surprise there when all your findings are internal and shielded from peer review. The four reports were published by Achieve Inc., Thomas Fordham Inst., the Mass. Business Alliance and the Mass. Dept. of Education.
The reports were all fabricated. In fact, currently in Massachusetts the benchmarked standards for Algebra 1 and 2 and Geometry come in much higher than CC standards. CC proposes to toss out math theories used since Euclid.
The K-12 standards under CC for literature do not even come close to preparing students for college. One aspect I learned of in 2013 when I met Sandra Stotsky is the replacing of classic literature and simple story telling with informational text and government documents. Dr. Pesta gave several examples that amounted to reading the latest EPA regulations and Presidential Orders.
Inidentally, all four of those groups were generously funded by the Gates Foundation as well.
Essentially we are going to propagandize our children. Couple that with the 30+ million children under SSRI medication and the stage is set for obedient drones for generations to come. And since we are using benchmarks lets use one here now. If the non-affordability of The Affordable Care Act is one benchmark then the benchmark for Race to the Top and Common Core is nothing more than a free fall spiral straight to the bottom.
....And That Is The Diatribe....
Postscript: In the link below is Part I one of the talks Dr. Pesta graciously gave at Floral St. Sch. In the parts II and III I will continue this series and inform my readers of how Common Core will sexualize our children as well as posting the rest of Dr. Pesta's great forum.