Call Now to Stop Federal Takeover of Missouri Education
Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:
Powerful forces in Washington, D.C., areseeking to centralize control over education and dictate what children in America must learn—perhaps even homeschoolers. And they are doing it through an ingenious program called “Common Core State Standards.”
Federal control over education would mean that dominant groups could force-feed children exactly the doctrine and world view they want them to believe.
If they had been transparent and simply filed a bill in Congress to empower the federal government to control the content of education, a firestorm of criticism would have doomed it. But they were clever: they offered money to state bureaucrats to do “voluntarily” what they themselves could not do without generating a nationwide outcry.
The result is that 45 states-including Missouri—took the bait, gave up the right to choose what their children would learn, and promised to create a system that would require all public children to learn exactly the same things.
This could affect homeschoolers profoundly if it is not stopped. College admissions tests are already changing to submit to Common Core. The ability to enter college or get a scholarship could one day depend on having learned the Common Core. Getting a job or getting into the military could one day depend on learning the Common Core. Even some homeschool curriculum providers have announced that their books comply with Common Core!
Once all public school children are learning exactly the same things nationwide, the path is laid to force private schools and homeschools to comply. After all, why should some non-conformists be allowed to teach their kids anything they want when “everyone” is learning Common Core? It is not unthinkable that your freedom to teach your children what you know they should learn could vanish—or it could be penalized beyond anything we might now imagine.
The federalization of education content would be a huge step toward turning the clock back and ending homeschool freedom.
And if federalization is successful, the seemingly unquenchable lust for centralization will certainly set its eyes on the next target: internationalization. And in the international arena, it’s perfectly acceptable to completely forbid homeschooling: just ask the Konrad and Romeike families from Germany or the Johansson family from Sweden.
But in Missouri, there is hope for change! Two bills are pending in the Missouri Legislature that would extract the state from Common Core: SB 210 and HB 616. They need your help!
Please call your Missouri state senator and your representative right away. Keep in mind that state bureaucrats joined Common Core without any approval from the Missouri Legislature. Your lawmakers are not the bad guys! But they DO have the power to solve the problem.
The message to your state senator could be as simple as “Please vote YES on SB 210. Give Missouri back the right to choose its own educational destiny.”
The message to your state representative could be as simple as “Please vote YES on HB 616. Give Missouri back the right to choose its own educational destiny.” You should feel free to develop a message that is more personal using information from this e-lert or other sources. Since this affects all parents, it is not necessary to identify yourself as a homeschooler.
Also please call your two U.S. senators (Blunt and McCaskill). Iowa’s Senator Chuck Grassley is circulating a letter for U.S. senators to sign opposing the funding of a nationalized curriculum. Your message to Senators Blunt and McCaskill can be as simple as: “Please sign onto Senator Grassley’s letter urging Congress to defund the Common Core Curriculum Standards Initiative. The federal government should not be using taxpayer dollars to pressure the states into adopting educational goals and curriculum which should be decided by local parents, teachers, and schools.”
Use this link to find your Missouri state senator and representative and their contact information.
Use the link below to get contact information for U.S. senators Blunt and McCaskill: Call 202 224-3121 or visit this page to get contact information for your U.S. senators.
For an explanation of how Common Core got started, read this article by HSLDA’s Director of Federal Relations, Will Estrada.
“What if I told you that Obama’s education-policy reforms, arguably pushed through without the good graces of the law, were crippling children’s imagination, stifling their creativity and on the whole setting them up to become less moral, kind empathetic people?” Read the rest of this National Review article.
The Heritage Foundation believes Common Core decreases a student’s ability to develop analytical thinking.
This article by a former Assistant U.S. Secretary of Education under Clinton and Bush explains how federal money controlled the entire operation and how little input was received.
Implementation of Common Core in California means that bright 8th graders can no longer take Algebra I, because one set of Common Core standards is required for every grade. (California Education Code 60605.11(b)(3)). Massachusetts had to water down its math standardsto comply with Common Core.
The College Board, owner of the SAT college admission test, is already changing the test to comply with Common Core.
This Cato article discusses the pressure to turn national education standards into federal education standards.
“The Common Core State Standards have no more legitimacy than the plans of your local village idiot to reform education.”
This Christian Post editorial asserts that “There is no evidence that the curriculum works, and it will destroy innovation amongst states.”
The left-leaning Brookings Institute says Common Core won’t improve the education kids get. Brookings says that neither the quality nor rigor of state standards is related to student achievement.
Although the Common Core is paraded as the work of states working together, the U.S. Department of Education is already jumping in.
In addition to an organization that controls the Common Core standards themselves, there is a group creating a national curriculum that implements the Common Core standards, and at least two groups are creating a national test that will test students on their knowledge of the Common Core standards.
A bill is pending in Iowa that will create a state panel to encourage businesses to give hiring preferences to students who earn a“certificate of competency” from their public school. While it’s difficult to tell if this is directly related to Common Core, it is a very troubling example of how state legislatures can link hiring preferences with certain preferred types of education. See p.33 starting at line 23.
Thank you for standing with us for freedom!
Scott A. Woodruff, Esq., Senior Counsel, HSLDA