Category Archives: Concerns

Now a word from our Sponsor: Karl Marx

To you teachers on the front lines trying your best to teach the truth to children while under assault from the many treasonous pressures brought to bear on you, I applaud you and pray for you. To you teachers seeking to indoctrinate our students, and to those other “useful idiots” of Lenin’s who are subverting good teachers everywhere, I pray for you for entirely different reasons.

Marxism in Common Core Standards?

In 2012, then Senator Margaret Dayton invited me to join her in a meeting with then Lt. Governor Greg Bell to discuss the Common Core standards and the agenda behind it. After introductions, the Lt. Gov. said something like, “I’ve read these standards and there’s no Marxism in them.” I immediately knew what had happened. Someone in the state office of education had told him that we believed the standards taught Marxism and that by reading them he would see we were just loonies and worried about nothing.

I explained this was a straw-man argument the state office set up to make us look bad and be easy to knock over. I explained that although the standards were weak, nobody had ever said they had Marxism in them. We then dove into other aspects of the Common Core agenda designed to take over the education system nationally and then globally, and everything I was aware of at that time.

Shall Exit vs. May Exit

The Lt. Governor took a page or two of notes and was very concerned about the state of things. He asked me to draft a bill to protect Utah from federal encroachment. That bill became SB 287 and was passed into law in the 2012 session with Governor Herbert signing it. Unfortunately, the language of the bill was amended to read “the state may exit” instead of my original language, “the state shall exit.” I believe this was done at the behest of the governor’s office, and of course the state office of education.

A couple years later, Governor Herbert appeared on The Blaze TV program with Glenn Beck and when asked about federal encroachment in education and Common Core said, citing this law, “We have a law that says if any of this federal overreach somehow gets into our [education] system, we are mandated to get out of it.” That was completely false since the bill didn’t pass into law that way, but it made the Governor sound strong and gave a false reassurance to people that Utah was protected.

Over these past years, despite being warned repeatedly about federal encroachment, nothing was ever done to get Utah out of these predicaments.

Warnings Ignored

One of the other things we’ve been warning about for over a decade is the influence of Bill Ayers, John Goodlad, Linda Darling-Hammond, and others in pushing dangerous agendas into our school system. What is this dangerous agenda? Marxism but in its most clever disguises. Not in the standards, but in the curriculum, the assessments, and pumped into the heads of teachers by perverted colleges of education and professional development classes that twist the truth to make America ugly.

Just as some declare the perverse idea that communism is a form of charitable living, Marxism today is being sold under the benign sounding banner of “social justice.” But what is it? It’s about treating different people unequally while claiming to make them equal. At its core, it’s an assault on all Western values – faith, family, and freedom. They know those are the obstacles to achieving political domination. Interestingly, the very people promoting social justice are the first to condemn fascism while simultaneously promoting its fraternal twin sibling, communism.

Marxism is “the socialist philosophy and political program developed by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels” (Wiktionary). Social justice is part and parcel of Marxism. As Orwell said, some are “more equal” than others in a supposedly equal system.

When Charlotte Iserbyt worked at the US Department of Education under Ronald Reagan, she was shocked at just how bad things were 40 years ago. She called the federal Department of “Education” a “Marxist factory” and for years smuggled out documents proving the case for what they were doing to American children. You can download a free pdf of the 900 page book she wrote called “The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America” from here:

http://deliberatedumbingdown.com/ddd/

I highly recommend spending some time on her site. She has done a tremendous work and service to America.

I’m not sure if she was aware of this statement during her time there, but I know she would agree they achieved this goal.

“Among the elementary measures the American Soviet government will adopt to further the cultural revolution are…[a] National Department of Education…the studies will be revolutionized, being cleansed of religious, patriotic, and other features of the bourgeois ideology. The students will be taught the basis of Marxian dialectical materialism, internationalism and the general ethics of the new Socialist society.” –William Z. Foster, Toward Soviet America, 1932 National Chairman of the American Communist Party (1933-44, 1945-57)

The communists knew they had to get the youth and destroy their foundations. President Carter was the one who finally started up the national department of education. How did the communists get so entrenched into our education system? I’m glad you asked.

The Non-Profit Organizations

Do you know why the Ford, Carnegie, and Rockefeller non-profit organizations contribute millions of dollars to the education system? (Oh and I shouldn’t leave out the Gates Foundation but they weren’t around yet for this part.)

The Reese hearings back in the 1950’s took a close look at the tax-free foundations. Norman Dodd was the primary investigator. Alger Hiss was convicted as a Soviet spy while serving as president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. A true Orwellian naming convention meaning the exact opposite. Hiss was replaced by Joseph Johnson. Dodd contacted Johnson to request an interview but Johnson was busy, and not yet knowing what he was sitting on, told Dodd he could just come look through the minutes of their meetings. Dodd pounced on this and found lengthy discussions about the actions of the foundations. From the 1911 minutes of the Carnegie group, they discussed the question, “Is there any means known to man more effective than war, assuming you wish to alter the life of an entire people?” After discussing this for a year, another set of minutes stated, “How do we involve the United States in a war?” In 1917, the minutes showed they congratulated themselves on the wisdom of their actions and had the brashness to telegram President Wilson informing him not to end the war too quickly. War devastates families and enriches those that own the military industrial complex companies.

Dodd then spoke with Rowan Gaither who was president of the Ford Foundation who openly said, the purpose of their foundation’s efforts was “to so alter life in the United States as to make possible a comfortable merger with the Soviet Union.“When Mr. Dodd suggested they make those efforts public, Mr. Gaither declined and stated that for public consumption they are guided by the 10 commandments and the constitution. This is the textbook definition of a “secret combination” or conspiracy. Publicly you put on one face while privately working to undermine a system.

These foundations have been promoting Marxism in gradual doses to bring America to the point it is a socialist nation.

The above information in this small section can be found in chapter 4 of the book, “How the World Really Works” by Alan B. Jones, which is in turn, a summary of “The Tax-Exempt Foundations” by William McIlhany.

Listen to former Secretary of Agriculture, Ezra Taft Benson share what Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev told him during a visit to America about gradual doses of socialism they were pumping into our nation.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNyI78XneQU

The goal of Marxism is revolution, which stunningly, we see in America today with Black Lives Matter’s leadership openly stating they have been trained in Marxism and implementing revolution in the streets of America. It’s not about helping Black people, it’s about destroying capitalism and replacing our form of government with a communist utopia (dictatorship). This is why the de-fund police movement exists: to further push America into anarchy where institutions of law and order are eradicated and militarized Marxists fill the power vacuum. Anyone supporting this movement is an enemy of freedom and America.

Destroying Capitalism

How do you destroy capitalism? You have to destroy the middle class. Then you just have a working class where everyone is “equal” and needy, working for a ruling class that is just a little more equal. That is the essence of communism. Be in charge, till the next coup where you will be denounced and held out as a traitor for someone else to step into leadership. That’s the story of the transition of leadership in the USSR during the 20th century. Each leader was replaced by one who essentially called their predecessor’s traitors for living off the people…

The destruction of the middle class of America would never happen unless it was an inside job. The communists knew this and developed a comprehensive plan to accomplish it. Bring financial pressure on the people, erode their confidence in their own history, take over one or both of the major political parties, eliminate obscenity laws by calling them censorship, discredit the American Founding Fathers, take over the education system including schools of education where teachers are indoctrinated to in turn pass it on to students, and much more.

Cleon Skousen identified 45 of the communist goals for destroying America and that list was then entered into the official congressional record by a *Democrat* lawmaker from Florida in 1963. Here’s a link to read the 45 goals which every American should know.

https://disruptthenarrative.wordpress.com/2013/01/08/45-communist-goals-by-dr-cleon-skousen-1958/

Almost every single goal on the list can be clearly seen as accomplished. Six of them have to do with education such as softening our curriculum (ex. Common Core) and taking over our teacher’s unions and associations. It’s had tremendous success by well-placed change agents across all segments of America. Hollywood breaks down our culture, governmental officials push for straight out communism, our children are taught nonsense, and our rights are constantly under attack. Recent pandemic events are more evidence where middle class business owners were told to abandon their businesses for weeks and months on end, while big business interests with more power and clout were deemed *essential* and allowed to stay open. Tremendous damage was done to American lives, not from Covid-19, but from government intervention policies.

The Communist Manifesto: Free Public Education

When Marx and Engle wrote the Communist Manifesto, they included 10 core planks. One of them was to have a free public education system. It’s no wonder public education doesn’t teach about the dangers of Marxism. It’s got a vested self-interest in concealing the truth about its origin.

“Oh but Oak, Thomas Jefferson wanted free public education. See, our founders wanted it too!!!”

OK, what was the difference between Marx and Jefferson on public education?

Public Education ViewsJeffersonMarx
GoalPreservation of our liberty through knowledge, character, and moral educationWorkforce training and revolution
ResponsibilityEqual opportunity for StudentsEqual outcomes for Students – Teachers become levelers via social justice
AdvancementMeritocracyEnd class-based society (by creating mass poverty)
Financing & DirectionDecentralized – Locally financed and operatedCentralized – State financed and operated (removed from locals)
CurriculumLocally chosenState chosen
ValuesJudeo-Christian Biblical valuesMorally relative atheism

It makes sense that locally, parents gather, talk about what’s best for their children, and ensure they get educated. The parents stay involved and they keep costs under control because they are directly responsible for them. No one gets between them and their children. With Marx, someone is always meddling with your family values and beliefs in the name of ensuring they are taught *the right things* by *the right people.* DANGER WILL ROBINSON.

Social Justice isn’t about Equality

Why was Common Core created the way it was? Listen to one of the authors…it was for social justice (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iI11e3a0Q0k – 4:55 mark). The authors wanted to slow things down. Dumb down the bright students (see Charlotte’s work above if you’re in doubt of this) and give the lower capacity students a better chance to be at the same level. IE. Marx’s equal outcome.

Jefferson would have been strongly against social justice even in education. He was all about letting the best and the brightest of both the rich and the poor advance as far as they were able to. This is what Jefferson said on differences in public classes.

“By… [selecting] the youths of genius from among the classes of the poor, we hope to avail the State of those talents which nature has sown as liberally among the poor as the rich, but which perish without use if not sought for and cultivated.” –Thomas Jefferson: Notes on Virginia Q.XIV, 1782. ME 2:206

In other words, let all be educated, help all to excel, and hold no one back. No social justice here.

Here’s the truth. If you believe in social justice, you’re either ignorant of what it means, or you’re anti-American. Most Americans are ignorant of what social justice is because they don’t understand Marxism. They have been taught a perverted form of charity to take care of the poor using governmental powers to confiscate the hard-earned wealth of the producers (which never reaches the poor). For those of you in the ignorant camp, please read Thomas Sowell’s essay, “The Quest for Cosmic Justice.”

http://tsowell.com/spquestc.html

Or watch this excellent Prager U video:

https://www.prageru.com/video/social-justice-isnt-justice/

Social Justice isn’t “Just”

There is nothing “just” about social justice. It is injustice. Social justice is Marxism. It’s the gospel of greed and envy. It’s the systematic destruction of institutions that uphold society, particularly the traditional family values passed on from parent to child. Instead of “work hard, get a good education, and take care of your family,” it’s “we were wronged” or as they push on the other side, “we are guilty.”

To paraphrase a prophet in the Book of Mormon, if you want justice, be just. If you want mercy, be merciful. You cannot have justice while seeking revenge or reparations (Alma 41:14). He also said, (speaking to the poor who had built synagogues of worship and then got cast out of them because they were too poor for the rich to let them in), don’t revile against your oppressors “lest ye become sinners like unto them.” I think Martin Luther King would have shared these sentiments.

One cannot be a patriotic American and favor social justice because the very foundation of America is “all men are created equal.” Not “all men should be made equal.” A conservative or liberal can be a patriotic American. But a Leftist cannot be a patriotic American. By definition they seek to overthrow the freedom of every individual and institution of traditional America.

Today’s education system is infested by Leftists. Our college schools of education pass on these subversive ideas to students who will become teachers, and they in turn pass them on to children who are indoctrinated in principles of evil. Our schools today are indeed Marxist factories.

Today’s families will need to sacrifice more by homeschooling their children or very carefully selecting individual classes and teachers that their children will actually be safe in, and by safe, I mean free of indoctrination from those that would poison their minds. I was personally made aware of two Alpine school district middle school teachers about 10 years ago teaching children that “communism isn’t that bad.” The families involved were completely caught off guard. The teachers were nice people and they had no idea they had these sentiments. Unless you speak with your children about what they are actually learning, you’d never know.

If anyone is under the illusion this has stopped in Utah, feel free to keep your head buried in the sand.

National Education Indoctrination Association

Who else is pushing this indoctrination into our classrooms? Of course, there’s the National Education Association (NEA) who promotes social justice and gets all their affiliates to do it as well.

http://www.nea.org/grants/JointConference.html

“Someone really is after us… (the NEA and its affiliates) have been singled out because of our political power and effectiveness at all levels — because we have the ability to help implement the type of liberal social and economic agenda that (they) find unacceptable.”

–Robert H. Chanin, National Education Association general counsel

The NEA is not about education. It’s about pushing an agenda.

Utah Education Indoctrination Assocation

In a recent conversation I got into on Facebook with former UEA president Sharon Gallagher-Fishbaugh, she indicated that “racial and social justice is critical” because that’s how to “create a great public school for EVERY child.” Yeah. It’s working out really well I think, if your goal is to INCREASE racial tension and disparity. Minorities feel underprivileged and envious, while white kids feel guilt. The truth is, there is no systemic racism in America. If you think there is, spend a little time on Prager U listening to some of the Black individuals like Larry Elder talking about real statistics:

https://www.prageru.com/search/?query=racism

https://www.prageru.com/video/larry-elder-eviscerates-the-myth-of-systemic-racism/

School children should not be subjected to this indoctrination not only because it isn’t factual, but because their brains aren’t even developed to be able to handle this kind of information. That’s why the indoctrination is done early because children can’t tell what’s happening to them. They should be focused on getting an education in the core subjects and not be subjected to this nonsense.

If you are a teacher paying dues to the UEA, you are aiding and abetting in the demise of the U.S. Constitution. If you are doing it because you need insurance, look for an alternative.

Utah State Office of Education (now going by the name Utah State Board of Education)

The current Utah State Superintendent of education, Sydnee Dickson, in a recent streaming event mentioned a couple things of concern.

https://youtu.be/qHBENQenwsg?t=8625

After announcing herself “as a white woman of privilege,” (2:24:08) she went on to share that “as leaders we have a responsibility to create mechanisms for systemic change” (2:25:10).

This is a statement of more changes to come, but what are some of the systemic changes Utah is currently experiencing?

From this page (https://stem.utah.gov/board-members/sydnee-dickson/) we read:

“Most recently Sydnee served on the national CCSSO writing committees for the InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards and the refresh of the ISLLC standards for preparing school leaders.”

What is InTASC? It’s the “Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium” and they are creating social-emotional learning standards for our children. Hmmm, what’s that?

From this news article on the Canyon’s school district website, we see Superintendent Dickson tell us we have “evolved” from character and civic education and are now moving toward a program endorsed by the U.S. Dept. of Education (giant red flag) to teach the social-emotional learning children need through a program endorsed by CASEL.

https://www.canyonsdistrict.org/general-news/12316-educating-hearts-and-minds-an-inside-out-approach-to-building-safe-schools/

Having evolved from ‘character or civic education,’ it’s building momentum alongside a growing body of research supporting its use, says Utah’s State Superintendent of Public Instruction Sydnee Dickson, who also spoke at the symposium. ‘We know more about brain research than we ever have before, and social-emotional learning is part of that…’

The ‘Second Step’ curriculum that Canyons is adopting is endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education and the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL). It’s lessons are designed to help students from kindergarten to eighth grade manage emotions, solve problems in a positive way, demonstrate empathy, and focus during class.”

Who is CASEL? Their website homepage (https://casel.org/) says they “stand against racial injustice.” They created a program to combat this called Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) and state, “SEL is the process through which children and adults understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.”

That sounds just peachy! Lets fight racial injustice by helping children understand and manage emotions? But shouldn’t that just happen by building friendships? What’s their idea of how this will work? Have a look at their equity webinar (https://casel.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/equity-webinar-FINAL.pdf). On page 15 we see this:

  • “In addition to required funding, striving for educational equity challenges us to examine biases and interrupt inequitable practices. We can then create inclusive, multicultural school environments that reveal and cultivate the interests and talents of children, youth, and adults from diverse backgrounds (Nat’l Equity Project).”

  • “Justice-oriented global citizenship as a developmental imperative to address inequities (i.e., education, health, wealth and environment) and promote collective wellbeing ”

  • “Situated in global history of power, privilege, oppression, resistance, empowerment, and self-determination/liberation that is raced, classed, aged and gendered”

  • “Schools and classrooms as mini-polities”

  • “SEL as a viable lever for justice-oriented civic/sociopolitical development trajectories”

THIS IS STRAIGHT OUT MARXISM! Karl Marx couldn’t have written it better. In fact, I think CASEL channeled him to do it! Multi-culturalism, justice-oriented global citizenship (redistribution of wealth, global carbon taxes, etc…), treating minorities as “more equal” than majorities, and reorienting civics through emotional manipulation and behavior modification of our children, and Utah is implementing it with the full involvement of our State Superintendent!

Knowing Sydnee Dickson is a nice person to talk to, doesn’t mean she isn’t completely wrong on these things. She’s a product of dozens of conferences where this is all presented as the next best thing in education. Unless someone intentionally looks at Marxism and it’s goals and methods, you will not see why promoting these things CAUSES PROBLEMS INSTEAD OF SOLVING THEM. You become the problem instead of the solution. You get led where a change agent wants you to look so they can then alter your thinking by giving you a little truth and mixing in a set of lies and making it all sound important and right.

If you really want to know why kids are having mental and social issues in the classroom, how about being compelled to learn, sit in a chair for 990 hours a year, and have their core values and beliefs challenged as they are marched toward socialism and forced to confront things that aren’t natural for children to confront? This will inevitably lead to further intrusions into their home life which is where these people really want to affect change. We can clearly see this is the goal. Search this page for the word “family” and you’ll find some alarming things (https://www.utahnsagainstcommoncore.com/offfeded). More on the family assault below…

Change agents

Change agents use Marxist tactics of twisting truth to make it more palatable. Occasionally they spout off something that reveals their true motives and agenda. When someone or a group follows these people (like the UEA, a school district administration, a university education department), and they get confronted with a quote like those below, their typical answer is, “well, I don’t agree with that statement but they have a lot of other stuff they’ve said which is great.” That’s called being a useful idiot. Lending your support to an individual who at their core has an evil agenda simply because you support some others of their statements. Lets start with an example of the indoctrination CASEL put out in page 8 of their guide.

Look at this cute picture. Any educator looking at this graph knows this is what we want, right. We want each child to have the support to have a chance to eat the fruit. Some need more help.

equality vs equityIn reality, what these programs do cannot be described as equality or equity. The first thing they do to help the *less smart* kids is cut off the legs of the other students who excel above them.

social justice equityThen when they determine the poor student is still learning, they cut down the tree and tell them “eat all you want” while the fruit rots and the tree dies.

social justice equity phase 2

To make everyone a winner, nobody can be a winner.

Let me give you some examples. Ever heard of Jaime Escalante? He’s the teacher in California that taught the class of *rejected students* calculus and had such incredible success they made the movie “Stand and Deliver” about it. How did he do this? High expectations. He expected the “stupid kids” to reach the fruit. That “Equality” picture above was his classroom where the students couldn’t reach the fruit and he did what any great teacher does. He helped his students reach the fruit when nobody said they could and he did it by making them work hard and not putting up with anything less than success. He gave them legs to stand on. Watch the movie.

What ever happened to him? He was too successful and embarrassed other teachers so the school district shut down his program. Tree felled.

Around 2000, California created the “green dot standards” for math. This was a program where instead of “a mile wide and inch deep” standards everyone talks about, they put green dots next to some standards and told teachers to spend 85% of their time on those standards. They were the key to mathematical learning. What happened?

California experienced massive success in increasing proficiency in algebra by 8th grade. The most awesome success came among minorities as they experienced up to a 6x increase in proficiency. This is a direct result of having high expectations and standards, and helping every student achieve. Equity achieved, right?

California's math progress

Seeing this incredible success, what did California do?

Dropped the program and adopted Common Core.

CA 8th grade drop from CCSSProgress lost. Now everyone can be equally dumb. No more smart kids whether they are white, black, or other minorities. Then chop up the tree after it’s down by reducing the difficulty of college exams so everyone feels good about their dumbed-down learning.

When I served on the Utah Elementary Math Education Committee a few years ago, as part of an opportunity for parents to review Common Core standards, I tried to show the committee the amazing success California had with these green dot standards. I waited for an opportune moment when one of the state office of education employees, Diana Suddreth, left the room. I knew that was my chance to share this success story. I passed out a flier I’d prepared with some of this information to the 15 member panel and shared why I thought Utah should adopt these standards. Unfortunately, Diana returned and completely shut down the conversation. The state office is not interested in success stories that change the status quo. They have their fiefdom and don’t want it disturbed.

Change agents are at work in every aspect of education. They often don’t even know they’ve been co-opted to serve in that capacity because they’ve been indoctrinated by master change agents who make things sound so great and only occasionally reveal the underlying goal. One goal (of the communists mentioned above) is to modify the behaviors and attitudes of children and the first step is always to soften the curriculum and reduce learning so they aren’t able to clearly see what’s happening to them. Our masters want a dumbed-down population that can’t tell what’s happening to them.

Lets look at a few specific change agents who are fully aware of what they are doing.

In an address to the Childhood International Education Seminar in 1973, Dr. Chester M. Pierce, Harvard Professor of Education and Psychiatry, said:

Every child in America entering school at the age of five is insane because he comes to school with certain allegiances to our founding fathers, toward our elected officials, toward his parents, toward a belief in a supernatural being, and toward the sovereignty of this nation as a separate entity. It’s up to you as teachers to make all these sick children well – by creating the international child of the future.

Now what do you think Chester has been working on for decades in his research and instruction to teachers? Interestingly, he is also noted for coining the term microaggression.

Remember “Blooms hierarchy you learned about in school and how you become self-actualized at the highest level? Here’s a definition of his you probably didn’t hear about in school.

“…a student attains ‘higher order thinking’ when he no longer believes in right or wrong. A large part of what we call good teaching is a teacher´s ability to obtain affective objectives by challenging the student’s fixed beliefs. …a large part of what we call teaching is that the teacher should be able to use education to reorganize a child’s thoughts, attitudes, and feelings.”

-Benjamin Bloom, psychologist and educational theorist, “Major Categories in the Taxonomy of Educational Objectives,” pg. 185

Here’s a quote from John Goodlad, identified by Charlotte Iserbyt as “America’s premier change agent.” He was hired by “conservative” BYU and worked there from 1983 to 1985. Then he founded the National Network for Educational Renewal and BYU signed on as a charter university and stayed with his organization till 2010, even hosting one of his conferences in 2006 I believe.

Many of his conferences included how to put social justice and LGBT teaching into classrooms. The only reason they dropped the NNER affiliation is because we discovered it and made a stink about it and the education department said they were dropping their membership “for financial reasons.” Yeah, as word got out that they were taking instructions from an atheist, humanist, socialist, I’d guess some donors and trustees threatened to turn off the spigot.

This is Goodlad:

“Most youth still hold the same values of their parents… if we do not alter this pattern, if we don’t resocialize, our system will decay.”

– John Goodlad, Schooling for the Future, Issue #9, 1971

Public education has served as a check on the power of parents, and this is another powerful reason for maintaining it.”
– John Goodlad, Developing Democratic Character in the Young, pg. 165

[schools] should liberate students from the ways of thinking imposed by religions and other traditions of thought.”
-John Goodlad, “Education and Community,” in Democracy, Education, and the Schools, Roger Stone, pg. 92.

B. Y. U.

If “conservative” BYU has such serious issues, you know pretty much every other university does as well.

Goodlad worked with BYU to create a Public School Partnership that pushed his books and doctrine into 5 major school districts around BYU (Provo, Alpine, Nebo, Wasatch, and Jordan). This is why so many of them are promoting social justice, because it comes from a socialist into the teacher college, which teaches teachers, who teach our children. Here’s one specific example of a math educator at BYU who loves teaching new teachers all about social justice:

https://www.utahnsagainstcommoncore.com/who-teaches-the-teachers-social-in-justice-at-byu/

Many more of these quotes above can be found here:

https://www.utahsrepublic.org/prominent-educators-vs-religious-leaders/

The Assault on the Family

One of Marx’s goals was the destruction of the family. Social justice demands it. It isn’t fair that some kids get good families and others don’t.

I know a family that moved from one area in Alpine school district to another so they could switch schools because their straight A daughter was given a B on an assignment she did perfectly solely because the teacher wanted her to know what it was like to not get a perfect grade and be like everyone else. There’s social justice for you, a toxic teacher punishing a student doing her best in the name of fairness.

President Johnson’s war on poverty had a devastating effect on Black communities by subsidizing single parents but taking away the subsidies if they got married. This gave rise to unwed parents and a lack of fathers in the home, which in turn caused tremendous problems. Watch here for some shocking statistics compiled by Glenn Beck.

https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=678710806016780

Then listen to this segment by Glenn on the groups of people with influence openly advocating that we need to do away with the traditional family concept because it promotes capitalism.  The last 10-15 minutes of the audio is key for the quotes, but all 30 minutes is worth listening to.

https://cms.megaphone.fm/channel/BMDC3567910388?selected=BMDC4182698834

Here’s a quote from Sophia Lewis who runs the “Family Story project”:

“That’s something I want to challenge, the idea that babies belong to anyone—the idea that the product of gestational labor gets transferred as property to a set of people.”

Pure Marxism. Abolish the family and make children the property of the community so they are raised away from parents who might influence their values toward a set of unacceptable beliefs (religious, liberty oriented, etc…)

Here’s a link to their twisted attack on the family, “embracing family justice for all.”

https://familystoryproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/Case-Against-Marriage-Fundamentalism_Family-Story-Report_040419.pdf

That document is lengthy. You can get a quicker taste of this nonsense reading this article:

https://www.publiusforum.com/2019/05/21/leftist-the-nation-wants-to-end-capitalism-by-destroying-the-family/

If you are for social justice, you are for the destruction of the family. You can’t separate ideology and say, “I’m for this piece of Marxism that I agree with, but not the rest.” By embracing any of it, you lend your voice and influence to all of it. You aid and abet the enemies of freedom. Your agreement with part gives others that trust you, permission and direction to embrace it and go further. Social justice warriors are promoting the destruction of the family, the end of capitalism, the end of the Constitution, the end of order, and the creation of a new world order: global communism headed by the world’s elites. We are living in “1984” and “Animal Farm.”

The 1619 Project: More Marxist Lies

The newest assault to destroy America is coming from the radical 1619 Project the New York Times is launching. This is yet another attempt to show how evil those white people were that came to America. This project will only further divide America, increase racial tension through promoting lies, and set back race relations by decades.

Here’s a segment on Glenn Beck’s program showing more about it: https://www.glennbeck.com/theblaze-tv/the-new-york-times-tries-to-re-write-history-the-1619-project-exposed

You can read about it here. It’s already taking root in schools across the country including Utah schools.

https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/08/the_lies_of_the_1619_project.html

Even BYU has a web page on “Race, Equity, & Belonging” that links to the 1619 Project and other “anti-racism” readings which are loaded with social in-justice content.

https://race.byu.edu/resources

BYU racismConnect the Dots

I didn’t always know this stuff. I was oblivious to it for decades of my life. But at some point, a rational mind has to recognize the overwhelming relationship between these dots and make all these connections come together. One must conclude that people mean what they say and are working to overthrow the family and the American way of life. They’ve been saying it for decades and been dismissed. Now they have infiltrated every facet of government and public agencies, and worse, the hearts of so many sincere (but misguided) people that it’s been given a place to grow in America.

It used to be forbidden for Communists and their sympathizers to be teachers in schools. In 1952, a 6-3 Supreme Court ruling upheld a NEW YORK law that prohibited communists from teaching in schools. It was the Feinburg Law which banned anyone from the teaching profession who called for the overthrow of the government. This was overturned in 1967 by a revised Supreme Court that didn’t share the concerns of the prior court (https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/supreme-court-rules-on-communist-teachers). In 2008, California overturned a state ban on communist activity in the schools with the full support of the California Teachers Association and the California Federation of Teachers (https://www.nysun.com/editorials/california-communists/74159/). It probably made sense to everyone to just come out and make it formal…

Where is California today? Leading the way…to Marxism. California State University just made ethnic and social justice studies a graduation requirement (https://www.times-standard.com/2020/07/22/california-state-university-sets-ethnic-studies-requirement/).

Are you awake yet? If you read this article, congratulations. Becoming informed is the first step. Now act. Save your family, and save your community.

Be Inspired

The world is turning right before our eyes. Men and women must act to save our freedoms which are being stripped away.

“Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.”

–Thomas Paine

“Revisiting the Revolutionary War is a bracing reminder that the fate of a continent, and the shape of the modern world, turned on the free choices of remarkably few Americans defying an empire.”

–George Will

“So that this nation may long endure, I urge you to follow in the hallowed footsteps of the great disobediences of history that freed exiles, founded religions, defeated tyrants, and yes, in the hands of an aroused rabble in arms and a few great men, by God’s grace, built this country.”

–Charlton Heston

ACT NOW: Make these calls

Call your school district and school board members. Ask if they are using the 1619 project in any of the schools. Get informed on it and tell them to not let it into your children’s schools. Tell them not to implement social-emotional learning programs. Point them at the CASEL document above. In their own words they are advocating Marxism. Then contact your state board member and ask them to prevent Utah schools from using these destructive curricula. Tell them we need local control and to be free of federal money and strings. We need local school boards at every school overseeing what’s happening locally. Find your rep here:

https://www.schools.utah.gov/board/utah/districtsmap

Even if your children are out of schools or don’t attend your local public school, make the calls. YOUR future is in the hands of those children and I don’t think anyone wants to live in a country fundamentally transformed by Marxists.

ACT NOW: Save your children and grandchildren

If you believe in America, the place that isn’t perfect, has made mistakes, but is still the greatest nation on earth with the greatest governance document ever crafted with the help of God, then it’s time to get your principles clear and pull your children out of public schools. The indoctrination has already done tremendous harm to our children and it’s just going to get worse. You’ve got to find alternatives for educating your children. Homeschool or private school, or selectively dual enroll them, it’s time to take action now to preserve your family.

If homeschooling scares you, there is a tremendous support structure in place to help you. It’s work, but probably not as much work as you think. Once you find a rhythm, most homeschool families love it and would never go back. Here’s a few videos that might inspire you.

https://agencybasededucation.org/homeschooling

There are loads of Facebook homeschool groups. Parents, grandparents, and single parents homeschool their children. If you want to do it, there is a way forward.

Something to Keep Your Eyes On

Now I think a question every Utahn should ask themselves is why the NEA gave Spencer Cox $75,000 for his campaign. Then we should know why Spencer Cox kept the money. He can’t be ignorant of the Leftist policies of the NEA. Assuming he is elected in the general election, what favors is he going to do for this Marxist organization? We can only hope and pray for divine intervention…

And now for something religious

If you are a Bible believer, try reading Revelation 13 again with this thought.

Verse 1: a blasphemous beast arises (Communism)

Verse 3: one of its heads is wounded to death (assumed death of communism), but his deadly wound was healed and all the world wondered after the beast (communism makes a comeback)

Verse 11: Another beast arises (socialism) which spake as a dragon (same old lies) and had two horns like a lamb (looks innocent)

Verse 12: This beast exercises the same power as the first beast and causes the earth to worship the first beast.

Verse 15: The second beast causes anyone that won’t worship an image of the first beast to be put to death. The new world order arises.

This is the history of socialism. It can’t stand truth and light so it ends the lives of those who oppose it. So far, the effort to create a great peaceful communist utopia has ended the lives of over 100 million people. How many more will be put to death is uncertain, but if we don’t act, America will fall.

Book reading list:

Want to be prepared for what’s happening? Here’s a short book list you should get very familiar with:

  • The Scriptures
  • None Dare Call it Conspiracy by Gary Allen
  • The Leipzig Connection by Paolo Lionni
  • The Naked Communist by Cleon Skousen
  • The Naked Capitalist by Cleon Skousen
  • The Law by Frederick Bastiat
  • The U.S. Constitution
  • How the World Really Works by Alan Jones
  • Many are Called but Few are Chosen by H. Verlan Anderson

(Featured Image of Marx by Anton Ivanov @123rf.com)

Comprehensive Sexuality Education

This is an informative series of Facebook posts about the Comprehensive Sexuality Education movement/program. They were posted by Jennie Earl who serves on the Utah State Board of Education to help explain what is happening in this area and the agenda of those involved. With permission I am re-posting with light format editing.

The four posts cover these topics:

  1. First, What is CSE and who are the primary players?
  2. Second, Where is CSE found around the nation and in our state?
  3. Third, What can you do to protect your family?
  4. Fourth, What are Utah laws that support family rights?

Post 1 – What is CSE and who are the primary players?

Here is a quick break down of the differences between Comprehensive Sexuality Education CSE (also known as Sexual Risk Reduction) and Abstinence-based Education (also known as Sexual Risk Avoidance).

Comprehensive Sexuality Education

  • Graphic Sexual content often depicting sexual acts
  • Introduction to various sexual behaviors
  • Continually changing definition of abstinence
  • K-12 sexual program often weaved throughout the curriculum
  • Focus on childhood sexual rights
  • Individual pleasure driven
  • Sexual License
  • Casualness about human anatomy
  • Duplicity/advocacy group involvement and removal of parents
  • How to consent /sexual negotiations/foreplay
  • Expectations low or ambiguous
  • All lifestyle relationships are presented as equal
  • Discussion about partners in elementary school
  • Self-sexual expression is valorized and revered
  • Gender theory

Abstinence-based Education

  • Age/medically appropriate content
  • Focus on healthy teen relationships
  • Clear definition of abstinence
  • Only in 5th grade/ middle and high school health education with parent consent
  • Recognize childhood development/innocence/latency period
  • Focus on responsibility to self and others
  • Sexual health for life, self-control/ long-term goal setting
  • Respect for human anatomy
  • Exactness/parent involvement
  • Refusal skills, clear boundaries
  • Clear expectations set high for all youth
  • Positive effects of committed legal relationships like marriage are encouraged
  • Friendships are stressed
  • Value of a person is multifaceted
  • importance of biological sex

The main movers in the US are Planned Parenthood and the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS) who hold consultative status at the UN. Along with these two organizations, state education policy makers and many advocacy groups work hand-in-hand to push the agenda to remove sexual taboos, “change social norms” and to “transform education”.

For more information about CSE go here.

https://www.comprehensivesexualityeducation.org/what-is-cse/

CSE advocacy groups to be aware of and information from Influencewatch are included here:

https://advocatesforyouth.org/

https://www.influencewatch.org/non-profit/advocates-for-youth/

https://www.glsen.org/

https://www.influencewatch.org/non-profit/glsen/

The Human Rights Campaign has a program called Welcoming Schools https://www.welcomingschools.org/

https://www.influencewatch.org/non-profit/human-rights-campaign/

Southern Poverty Law Center has classroom resources titled “Teaching Tolerance” https://www.tolerance.org/.

https://www.influencewatch.org/non-profit/southern-poverty-law-center-splc/

This same organization lists Family Watch International as a hate group https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/group/family-watch-international

https://www.influencewatch.org/non-profit/planned-parenthood-federation-of-america/

 

Post 2 – Where is CSE found around the nation and in our state?

Comprehensive Sexuality Education or CSE can be found in every state. Here are three examples of what is happening in the US.

1. New Jersey’s bill https://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2018/Bills/PL19/6_.HTM

https://www.dailysignal.com/2020/01/13/parents-challenge-radical-lgbt-curriculum-in-new-jersey-schools/

2.  Here is an analysis of the final bill passed in Washington in March 2020 http://lawfilesext.leg.wa.gov/biennium/2019-20/Pdf/Bill%20Reports/Senate/5395-S.E%20SBR%20FBR%2020.pdf?q=20200401075453

A couple of things worth noting from the bill.  CSE will be delivered in K-3 via Social Emotion Learning SEL. Protected classes do not include religion as stated in the analysis.

3.  California’s Healthy Youth Act-information with questions and links https://www.cde.ca.gov/ci/he/cf/cahealthfaq.asp

I often here “yes but that is California and we are Utah”.  Where can CSE be found in Utah?

Some local health departments distribute and refer to organizations that promote CSE.  For example look through Weber/Morgan health Department’s site under “Health Promotion” and “Teen Health”.  http://www.webermorganhealth.org/health-promotion/teen-health/

The relationships link has resources for parents and resources for youth compare the difference between the two.  One of the references for teens says “Build Healthy Relationships” which takes you to:
http://www.seriouslysexuality.com/  Notice the primary players on this site (SIECUS and menstoyhub)
Also under “sexual health” Advocates for Youth and Planned Parenthood are two of the three references used for Educators.

Libraries

This post is from Pro-Life Utah Showing one of the programs offered through Utah’s library system as a summer program.   http://www.prolifeutah.org/your-stories/story.cfm?id=515

Utah State Board of Education Core Guides:

In the Spring of 2019 USBE approved new health standards.  Staff then developed with the help of outside agencies “Core Guides” to accompany the standards.  These Core Guides could be used by educators in their classroom.

In August the public contacted Utah State Board members with concerns about CSE advocacy groups listed as resources in the Core Guides.  Many CSE items were removed over the next several months as they were a clear violation of Utah law (thank you to those that emailed or called in), but CSE advocacy groups remain as resources promoted because of their continued presence within the Core Guides.  As of March 2020, a vetting process has been put into place to assist in vetting upcoming and current Core Guides.  The motion to remove the current Core Guides from our site until the new process is fully implemented failed to get enough votes.

For Illustrative purposes I am only going to reference second grade but you can look through the full core guides as I have included the link to it as well.
Third Grade Core Guides: https://www.schools.utah.gov/file/f3bfef32-f04f-46aa-ab48-cfef868a7481

Human Rights Campaign “Welcoming Schools”, Southern Poverty Law Center “Teaching Tolerance” and GLSEN: Can all be located under Mental and Emotional Health 3.MEH.2 Additional Activities and Resources Link

Advocates for Youth -Under Human Development Standard 3.HD.3 Feeling Safe

Full Core Guides can be found here: https://www.schools.utah.gov/curr/health?mid=908&tid=2

Other areas where CSE advocacy groups can be found:  Suicide prevention coalition groups locally and state wide, bullying programs and policy, some times in English class readings or History class.

 

Post 3 – What can you do to protect your family?

 

  • 2- Teach your Family! In the fall as I was feeling overwhelmed and anxious about CSE content I knelt and prayed for help to understand what and how to help my own children and Utah families. That morning I was lead to Ezekiel 44:23 “Teach my people the difference between the holy and the profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean” You have a unique insight about each of your children and know best what they need. As you strengthen your relationship with your children, youth will naturally want to know exactly where you stand on issues related to human intimacy. They will want to live up to any expectations you set. You are the authority when it comes to your family. The responsibility to teach them falls on your shoulders first. As you seek inspiration you too can find resources and know how to teach important truths to your children and family members.

 

  • 3- Talk with your local district about the content they allow in the classroom. Utah is not a CSE state! Organizations that advocate for such practices should not be in our schools they are outside Utah law. There are tons of great resources for schools that are usable for all children from many different backgrounds. As a parent in Utah, you can request certain materials not be taught to your child. You can ask to have your child receive an alternate assignment or to be excused as per Utah law ( https://le.utah.gov/xcode/Title53G/Chapter10/53G-10-S403.html ). Ask to be part of the Sex Education Materials Review Committee for your local district. Ask how they vet materials. USBE recently approved a vetting process that you could recommend is implemented at your school. https://usbe.civicclerk.com/Web/GenFile.aspx?ad=2608 Family Watch also has an analysis tool they use. 15-CSE-Analysis-Tool_Template_final_7_18.doc

 

  • 4- Take a few minutes and meet with your child’s teacher to explain your concerns. Meet with your local school board members.

 

  • 5- A number of national organizations have put together a parent guide to help families navigate current gender issues in the school setting. In chapter 5 of this guide it includes parent involvement and community building information. https://genderresourceguide.com/

 

  • 6- Any program used at the school should have evidence demonstrating that it does what it actually says it will do. I have included a link of research conducted by Irene H. Ericksen, M.S. and Stan E. Weed, Ph.D. They have looked at 120 studies of school-based sex education programs and reported on the findings. The full report, short video findings, and an abstract are listed here. https://www.institute-research.com/published-cse.php An organization called Blueprints looks at Healthy Youth Development programs that are based on scientific evaluations and have strong evidence of effectiveness https://www.blueprintsprograms.org. In the same vein, always check the statistics you are given. For example research conducted by UCLA Williams Institute https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/ will have a different approach than research from the Institute for Family Studies. https://ifstudies.org/. It is good to be familiar with the objective of research entities and their agenda.

 

  • 7- Find solutions by making recommendations to education leaders of resources you would support using in the classroom. Ascend is an organization that compiles sexual health education resources to be used around the nation. They are a great wealth of information-Here is a statement from them “Sexual Risk Avoidance is an educational approach based on the public health model of primary prevention to empower youth to avoid ALL the risks of sexual activity.” Take a minute to look through their materials. https://weascend.org/ (Check out Heritage Keepers and Real Essentials. They are located on their site.)

 

 

  • 9- Attend public meetings. A schedule for local school Community Councils, Local School Boards, Utah State Board of Education and Local Health Departments should be posted on the organization’s webpage or the secretary could direct you to the information. Often these can be found by calling the secretary of the organization or by going to their website. Each will have its own time frame and rules for public comment. For example USBE has public comment within the first hour of their normal monthly meeting. Public Comment is a time for elected officials to listen, so rarely will a response be given during this part of the meeting.

 

  • 10- USBE has a new vetting process for core guide materials. If the public has concerns with any of the information or organizations on the core guides they can bring their concerns before the Standard and Assessment Committee to be heard. Here is the number to call to get on the agenda. Noralee Green Phone: (801) 538-7515. If you have an ongoing concern and it has not been addressed after talking with local education leaders, USBE has a hotline where our auditing department will investigate https://www.schools.utah.gov/internalaudit?mid=892&tid=3

In closing, work within your comfort level and where you can have the greatest impact. Act on your personal impressions for your family and community. Ask others to help and support you in your efforts. Many parents are wanting to be part of the solution but simply are unsure about what to do or where to start.

 

Post 4 – Utah law that supports family rights

#4 CSE Law Post-this is not all inclusive but key provisions of Utah Law that support families in Utah

(Click on the links to read the whole law)

Parents Rights

  1. a) Under both the United States Constitution and the constitution of this state, a parent possesses a fundamental liberty interest in the care, custody, and management of the parent’s children.

(d) The state recognizes that:

(i) a parent has the right, obligation, responsibility, and authority to raise, manage, train, educate, provide and care for, and reasonably discipline the parent’s children; and

(ii) the state’s role is secondary and supportive to the primary role of a parent.

(e) It is the public policy of this state that parents retain the fundamental right and duty to exercise primary control over the care, supervision, upbringing, and education of their children.

(3) The Legislature:

(a) recognizes that parents are a child’s first teachers and are responsible for the education of their children;

(b) encourages family engagement and adequate preparation so that students enter the public education system ready to learn; and

(c) intends that the mission detailed in Subsection (2) be carried out through a responsive educational system that guarantees local school communities autonomy, flexibility, and client choice, while holding them accountable for results.

2) The Legislature recognizes that:

(d) the primary responsibility for the education of children within the state resides with their parents and that the role of state and local governments is to support and assist parents in fulfilling that responsibility;

3) Through an integrated curriculum, students shall be taught in connection with regular school work:

(a) honesty, integrity, morality, civility, duty, honor, service, and obedience to law;

(b) respect for and an understanding of the Declaration of Independence and the constitutions of the United States and of the state of Utah;

(c) Utah history, including territorial and preterritorial development to the present;

(d) the essentials and benefits of the free enterprise system;

(e) respect for parents, home, and family;

(f) the dignity and necessity of honest labor; and

(g) other skills, habits, and qualities of character which will promote an upright and desirable citizenry and better prepare students to recognize and accept responsibility for preserving and defending the blessings of liberty inherited from prior generations and secured by the constitution.

Parental participation at local schools

(3) a) Each local school board shall adopt a policy on parental involvement in the schools of the district.

(b) The local school board shall design its policy to build consistent and effective communication among parents, teachers, and administrators.

(c) The policy shall provide parents with the opportunity to be actively involved in their children’s education and to be informed of:

(i) the importance of the involvement of parents in directly affecting the success of their children’s educational efforts; and

(ii) groups and organizations that may provide instruction and training to parents to help improve their children’s academic success and support their academic efforts.

Waivers of Participation

If a parent of a student, or a secondary student, determines that the student’s participation in a portion of the curriculum or in an activity would require the student to affirm or deny a religious belief or right of conscience, or engage or refrain from engaging in a practice forbidden or required in the exercise of a religious right or right of conscience, the parent or the secondary student may request:

(a) a waiver of the requirement to participate; or

(b) a reasonable alternative that requires reasonably equivalent performance by the student of the secular objectives of the curriculum or activity in question.

4) a)The state board shall adopt rules that:

(i) provide that the parental consent requirements of Sections 76-7-322 and 76-7-323 are complied with; and

(ii) require a student’s parent to be notified in advance and have an opportunity to review the information for which parental consent is required under Sections 76-7-322 and 76-7-323.

(6) Except as provided in Section 53G-10-202, political, atheistic, sectarian, religious, or denominational doctrine may not be taught in the public schools.

Health Education

Any course touching these items mush have parent consent

(i) “Sex education instruction” means any course material, unit, class, lesson, activity, or presentation that, as the focus of the discussion, provides instruction or information to a student about:

(A) sexual abstinence;

(B) human sexuality;

(C) human reproduction;

(D) reproductive anatomy;

(E) physiology;

(F) pregnancy;

(G) marriage;

(H) childbirth;

(I) parenthood;

(J) contraception;

(K) HIV/AIDS;

(L) sexually transmitted diseases; or

(M) refusal skills, as defined in Section 53G-10-402.

(2) A school shall obtain prior written consent from a student’s parent before the school may provide sex education instruction to the student.

(3) If a student’s parent chooses not to have the student participate in sex education instruction, a school shall:

(a) waive the requirement for the student to participate in the sex education instruction; or

(b) provide the student with a reasonable alternative to the sex education instruction requirement.

(b) The state board shall make rules that, and instruction shall:

(i) stress the importance of abstinence from all sexual activity before marriage and fidelity after marriage as methods for preventing certain communicable diseases;

(ii) stress personal skills that encourage individual choice of abstinence and fidelity;

(iii) prohibit instruction in:

(A) the intricacies of intercourse, sexual stimulation, or erotic behavior;

(B) the advocacy of premarital or extramarital sexual activity; or

(C) the advocacy or encouragement of the use of contraceptive methods or devices; and

methods of strengthening the family; and allow instruction to include information about contraceptive methods or devices that stresses effectiveness, limitations, risks, and information on state law applicable to minors obtaining contraceptive methods or devices.

No funds of the state or its political subdivisions shall be used to provide contraceptive or abortion services to an unmarried minor without the prior written consent of the minor’s parent or guardian.

1) Any person before providing contraceptives to a minor shall notify, whenever possible, the minor’s parents or guardian of the service requested to be provided to such minor. Contraceptives shall be defined as appliances (including but not limited to intrauterine devices), drugs, or medicinal preparations intended or having special utility for prevention of conception.

(2) Any person in violation of this section shall be guilty of a class C misdemeanor.

I am including one rule because it focuses on the local Instructional Materials Commission and parent participation.

An LEA governing board shall annually appoint and review members of the LEA’s curriculum materials review committee on or before August 1.

(b) An LEA’s curriculum materials review committee shall include parents, health professionals, school health educators, and administrators, with at least as many parents as school employees.

(c) The members of an LEA’s committee shall:

(i) meet on a regular basis, as determined by the membership;

(ii) select officers

Youth suicide prevention

(2) In collaboration with the public education suicide prevention coordinator, a school district or charter school, in the secondary grades of the school district or charter school, shall implement a youth suicide prevention program, which, in collaboration with the training, programs, and initiatives described in Section 53G-9-607, shall include programs and training to address:

(g) methods of strengthening the family; and

(h) methods of strengthening a youth’s relationships in the school and community.

Maintaining Constitutional Freedoms in the public Schools

(1) Any instructional activity, performance, or display which includes examination of or presentations about religion, political or religious thought or expression, or the influence thereof on music, art, literature, law, politics, history, or any other element of the curriculum, including the comparative study of religions, which is designed to achieve secular educational objectives included within the context of a course or activity and conducted in accordance with applicable rules or policies of the state and LEA governing boards, may be undertaken in the public schools.

(2) No aspect of cultural heritage, political theory, moral theory, or societal value shall be included within or excluded from public school curricula for the primary reason that it affirms, ignores, or denies religious belief, religious doctrine, a religious sect, or the existence of a spiritual realm or supreme being.

(3) Public schools may not sponsor prayer or religious devotionals.

(4) School officials and employees may not use their positions to endorse, promote, or disparage a particular religious, denominational, sectarian, agnostic, or atheistic belief or viewpoint.

I hope this is helpful for parents working with their local districts.

Why do States and Schools Pay for this Cr@p from Pearson?

Pearson has made out very well as a provider of education services for many decades, but none like the decade of Common Core. Pearson was involved in the very beginning of the process as one of the players who knew what was happening. It allowed them to produce curricula that matched the standards right out of the gate when the standards were released. States were then bribed to immediately adopt the standards before most publishers could provide reworked curriculum, so districts and schools turned to what was available (Pearson and a couple other major players) to buy their materials. This resulted in hundreds of small education companies being put out of business, unable to afford to rework their curriculum in time without early access to the Common Core standards.

The purpose of this short post isn’t to expose all of Pearson’s connections. That can be dug up elsewhere. I just want to point out a couple things.

First is this one I learned this past week. President Obama directed $350 million to Pearson to create Common Core texts (I think this article I’m linking to should have said tests because the PARCC test was Pearson’s and there was a $350 million grant for CC tests which largely went to Pearson and SBAC which makes me wonder slightly how they arrived at their information). Here’s the new twist though: Pearson gave President Obama a $65 million book deal through their subsidiary Penguin Random House. Quid pro quo anyone? https://www.investmentwatchblog.com/obama-gave-pearson-publishing-350-million-to-create-commoncore-text-and-pearson-gave-obama-a-65-million-dollar-book-deal-in-return/

Second, a couple years ago, Dr. Duke Pesta presented at a special event in Salt Lake City. I posted the video recording to Youtube and it’s had nearly 10,000 views at this point. If you haven’t watched it, here’s your chance. It’s excellent.

https://youtu.be/jWGpCOYre0Q

This past week, a former employee of Pearson posted a comment on the video. It’s what we already knew. Pearson’s massively profitable testing arm is pure crap. Trying to grade hundreds of thousands or millions of tests in giant batches is impossible. They don’t even try.

I worked for Pearson several years ago “grading” high school student essays. Essay graders were broken up into teams of 7 people in a room of 300 people, morning and afternoon shifts, sitting in front of a computer terminal. We were instructed to grade an essay as it appeared on computer screen in less then 5-minutes as Dr. Duke stated, and we were told not to take into consideration grammar, spelling, and cohesiveness of the essays. My team consisted of four high school teachers and three college educated individuals who were not teachers. Pearson’s goal was to grade every essay with a score of 3 or above on a 5 point-scale. Our team was constantly discussing the madness of the work and having confrontations with the supervisors and management team. Thank goodness it was just a temporary job for 3-months, but it was excruciating to see the bad grammar, spelling mistakes, and unintelligible thoughts of those kids.

There is ZERO benefit to students taking these tests. What good is a test without feedback so you can improve, and what good is a score if it’s arbitrary and meaningless? Pearson’s massive hold on states needs to be sliced free and terminated. Schools and districts should bring testing back to the local level so teachers craft a well thought out test, grade it, return it to students for feedback, and in turn give parents something they can tangibly discuss with their children to help them in whatever way they deem appropriate.

Can any legislator or member of the state board of education or other educator justify this? You’re WASTING OUR TAX DOLLARS. Why? Is it to say, “we test our students?” That’s a load of crap. You’re indoctrinating and psychologically harming them and should be held accountable for SAGE and Aspire and all the other idiotic standardized tests you’re foisting on our children. You are creating unhealthy stress in children all over this state.

Lastly, I want to point out that Pearson has been caught with it’s pants down knowingly indoctrinating our children through their curricula. Project Veritas got some of the big wigs on hidden camera denigrating the constitution and Christianity and how they put that into their texts unbeknownst to parents. Their goal is to make money and change American culture and they’re doing that through their powerful governmental connections and education industry dominance. Watch it here: https://www.projectveritas.com/tag/pearson/

Utah schools, districts, and the state should completely cut ties with this anti-American, anti-education behemoth. Restore local control and pass the savings from this garbage back into teachers salaries. Eliminating these garbage tests and could provide every Utah teacher with a nice pay increase.

The failure we call Common Core

Numerous articles and studies have been published the last couple years exposing the soft underbelly of the creature we call Common Core. It’s hard outer shell created by legislation and billions of dollars of propaganda, can’t protect it from the reality that is slowing sinking in after years of ruining our school system. The damage caused by Common Core will last longer than what would be caused by Godzilla on a rampage in Tokyo. Our nation’s children will suffer the effects for a lifetime and the legacy of Common Core will be the continued decline of the American education system, to say nothing of the indoctrination and collection of personal and behavioral data taking place.

Please share this post on social media and with legislators. Ask them to get your state off Common Core and return to local control so parents have ultimate control over their children’s education.

I’m just going to share a few items here for the purpose of documenting what we warned about from the very beginning. Until states wake up and get off the Common Core train, our children will continue to suffer. In the absence of states doing the right thing and returning to solid standards and shunning federal “accountability” and funding, the only recourse for families at this point is to take education into your own hands and do what’s best for your children. Enter AgencyBasedEducation.org.

1) NAEP decline

https://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/statement-secretary-devos-2019-naep-results

Education Secretary Betsy Devos:

“Every American family needs to open The Nation’s Report Card this year and think about what it means for their child and for our country’s future. The results are, frankly, devastating. This country is in a student achievement crisis, and over the past decade it has continued to worsen, especially for our most vulnerable students.

Two out of three of our nation’s children aren’t proficient readers. In fact, fourth grade reading declined in 17 states and eighth grade reading declined in 31. The gap between the highest and lowest performing students is widening, despite $1 trillion in Federal spending over 40 years designated specifically to help close it.

This must be America’s wake-up call. We cannot abide these poor results any longer. We can neither excuse them away nor simply throw more money at the problem.”

Remember, Common Core was introduced and rolled out to be implemented around 2011. Up to that point, scores were on the rise. Since then, scores have been stagnant or dropped.

2019 Naep Math performance
2019 naep reading scores

2) Common Core hurts low-achieving students

Five years after Common Core, a mysterious spike in failure rate among NY high school students
Potential signs of long-lasting problems for low-achieving students

https://hechingerreport.org/five-years-after-common-core-a-mysterious-spike-in-failure-rate-among-ny-high-school-students/

“There’s pretty decent evidence that low performers didn’t do great in the transition to Common Core.” said Polikoff. “Common Core is more conceptual with math. If you don’t have the basics down, and the teacher is teaching in ways that seem more confusing, you could be worse off.”

Nothing *seems* more confusing than things that actually *are* more confusing.

3) Federal Study: States better off without CC

https://thefederalist.com/2019/05/30/federally-funded-study-common-core-sunk-u-s-kids-test-scores/

“Contrary to our expectation, we found that [Common Core] had significant negative effects on 4th graders’ reading achievement during the 7 years after the adoption of the new standards, and had a significant negative effect on 8th graders’ math achievement 7 years after adoption based on analyses of NAEP composite scores,” the Center on Standards, Alignment, Instruction and Learning (C-SAIL) preliminary study said.

4) ACT Scores drop even though the College Board made tests easier to match CCSS

https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2018/10/17/math-scores-slide-to-a-20-year-low.html

The newest batch of ACT scores shows troubling long-term declines in performance, with students’ math achievement reaching a 20-year low

5) California’s math disaster

California decimated their incredible math progress by adopting Common Core. Last year I shared the stats from a Hoover Institute study of how they were crushing it helping minorities and low-income kids achieve greater proficiency in algebra by 8th grade. I guess too much success breeds some kind of bigotry so they adopted Common Core to kill the progress. This graph tells the story in a nutshell, but check out the original post for more information.

CA 8th grade drop from CCSS

Student Indoctrination and Shaming in Provo S.D.

Want to see how social justice and leftist indoctrination works in public schools? Look no farther than “conservative” Provo, Utah. Think all is well in “Happy Valley”? Think this stuff only happens in California? Think again. It’s all over Utah (yes, you can read that sentence two ways).

I think it’s time to fire some teachers and find alternatives to sending your children to schools where their minds and values are warped and parents rights ignored and denigrated. Failure to act means the next generation just continues the slide toward social justice and socialism.

The stories below are from one parent with children at different schools and from multiple teachers. “Oh but surely MY children are just fine.” Ask your children what things are really like at their school. Do teachers engage in these kinds of behaviors? Those are teachers that don’t deserve the title. This isn’t teaching. They need replaced by people who don’t twist minds, lie to students, ignore parental desires, and coerce behavior. Schools are to be a support to families per state law. Instead, we have teachers engaging in child abuse.

If the system can’t police itself, which it clearly can’t, then something needs to change including allowing for punishments for teachers who violate basic principles like these stories illustrate.  This has been going on for years all across the state with teachers violating various laws as documented on this site and others. They never suffer more than a wrist slap unless they get caught doing something severe. Reshaping of minds through social justice techniques is clearly allowed because who wants to punish a teacher, right?

How can legislators be so blind as to not see the negative consequences that are going to come from passage of HB 118 this past session where teachers will now have the state sanctioned power to “incentivize” taking state standardized tests? Unbelievable.

Story 1 – this isn’t teaching

“Recently, my 6th grader was telling me about how they were discussing global warming in their, “science,” class and how man is destroying the planet, resources are being used up and time is running out to an inevitable apocalyptic end of life as we know it if drastic measures aren’t taken to reverse the damage we, humanity, have Done to mother Gaia!

I asked my son if the teacher had said anything about sun spots and the cyclical temperature changes the planet has been going through for as long as recorded history has been recording temperatures? He said, “NO WAY!”

I asked why not and he said, “Are you kidding… you DO NOT disagree with the teacher or you will be in BIG trouble!”

I again asked him, why not? His great-grandfather happens to be a world renowned climatologist who taught at UC Boulder among other major universities during his career and invented complex weather tracking/prediction models. His GGF would laugh out loud when would hear people going on about, “Manmade Global Warming”.  He would say things like, “These idiots think our polar ice caps are melting because of SUVs and Hummers. Well how the hell do they explain the ice caps on Mars melting at a relatively similar rate to ours? Last I checked the only vehicles on mars were electric and there is only one!” He would often talk about solar flares and how they would affect cyclical warming and cooling periods around the solar system depending upon the frequency and extremity of the solar flares happening on the surface of the sun. He would also comment on the level of hubris ,”these idiots must have to think they are significant enough to actually have an impact and make a difference either way.”

My son has heard me talk about these examples before but still wanted to stay out of it. He began to recount a recent example of when another student had been so bold as to offer an opposing position on the, “settled science”, and he was called out into the hall to be chastised by both of the 6th grade home room teachers while both classes watched  through the glass doors. Message sent, loud and clear! Dissenting points of view are not allowed… or at least that is what the perception of the students is at this point. “Perception is reality”, or so the saying goes.

My other son in 8th grade overheard this exchange and seconded the notion that it is not ok to offer an opinion on the issue other than what the teacher presents. He said that he too was going through similar classroom experiences at the middle school.”

[Oak note: Independent thinking not allowed. Both sides of an argument not being presented. This is being taught what to think, not how to think.]

Story 2 – the lies they tell

“My 8th grader was in class the other day when one of the RISE Civics tests were handed out. Everyone was taking the test except my son (who was opted out) so after all the tests were handed out, the teacher walked over to his desk and began to tell him in a voice loud enough for the whole class to hear, that she knew his parents didn’t want him to take the test, but that if he didn’t, he would not be able to graduate high school or even be able to get an associates degree.

She proceeded to list all the things he would be missing out on, which made him feel very uncomfortable in front of his peers and worry about all the negative connotations mentioned if he didn’t take the test. So much so, that he took it, even though we had exempted him previously; Verbally and in writing, to the Principle, office staff and the teacher.

Think about the message sent to all the other students who were witnessing this exchange.

This teacher acted in direct defiance of the parents wishes, publicly shamed and emotionally manipulated a minor in front his peers and violated the current state law relative to the situation.”

[Oak’s comments]

Here’s where you get information on opting your child out of state standardized tests.

https://www.utahnsagainstcommoncore.com/opt-out-guiding-document/

https://schools.utah.gov/assessment (click parental exclusion and you’ll see the form. There are only 2 tests required: a civics test is required for graduation; and a CTE test is required for specific certification. No state tests are required for elementary or middle school. This teacher obviously knew that and knew this test had no bearing on college degrees. She clearly lied and manipulated this student and should be forced to apologize to the class and explain that she lied and manipulated the situation. She SHOULD be forced to do that, but will it happen? Doubtful. Administrators wouldn’t want to lessen teacher “authority” to the class, but it’s OK to destroy parental authority.)

Story 3 – Social justice and law breaking

“All year, I have been hearing about agenda based, framed questions from my son’s 8th grade English teacher about the, “undocumented immigrants” and the horrible things that are being done to them and constantly going on about how unfair their plight is and how we are doing nothing to help them to get to a better life, etc, etc, etc. I am sure you can imagine all the angles and ways that a teacher in that position, with a captive audience for the entire school year could cover such platitudes. As a side note, this is not the same teacher that has been going on about Global Warming that I mentioned before, that was the science teacher. That teacher just had them do an essay on, “What do you find alarming about Global Warming?” [Oak note: just the title of this assignment is indoctrinating and taking sides.]

Back to English class, he was recently given an assignment to come up with a plan to aid and abet the effort to help illegal aliens cross into the USA. Here is the assignment in his own words. 

‘We had to respond to the question, “What can I do to help immigrants get across the border of the United States of America?” Then, for the assignment, we had to come up with some type of physical object and a plan on what we can execute to succeed in that motive.

It was sort of like a project. We had to build a poster and respond to other related questions like, “What is our solution to this problem, why will it work and how are we going to do it?

Then we had to create a physical object that went with our plan, such as a legislative bill that we would propose, a website or an app or something that in some way correlates to the issue and our solution to it.’

So now, instead of just promoting the breaking of laws by the illegal immigrants, we are apparently getting into training on political activism and breaking the laws ourselves through criminal conspiracy and misprision? I mean, is this not disturbing?”

End Notes

1) Where is the legislator that will protect families and American culture? It’s clearly time for civil punishments where the school systems can’t or won’t monitor and police themselves.

2) I have a daughter attending a Utah college right now on a scholarship who doesn’t have a high school diploma or GED, and solely got that from her ACT score, single page homeschool transcript that showed what she did for four years prior to college, and transcript from an online charter school where she took some classes. Your children can get by just fine without local public schools or they can selectively dual-enroll and just take classes that suit them and homeschool for the rest without the indoctrination. Homeschooling is growing rapidly in Utah and with stories like these it’s not hard to see why. Click here for more information:

https://www.utahnsagainstcommoncore.com/dual-enrolling-your-child/

https://www.agencybasededucation.org/options/homeschooling/ (Is homeschooling right for your family?)

What Kinds of Human Beings Do We Wish to Produce?

Reprinted from Wendy Hart’s blog: https://wendy4asd.blogspot.com/2018/10/what-kinds-of-human-beings-do-we-wish.html

SOCIAL EMOTIONAL LEARNING

The most controversial issues of the twenty-first century will pertain to the ends and means of modifying human behavior and who shall determine them. The first educational question will not be ‘what knowledge is of the most worth?’ but ‘what kinds of human beings do we wish to produce?’ The possibilities virtually defy our imagination.” –John GoodladThe most controversial issues of the twenty-first century will pertain to the ends and means of modifying human behavior and who shall determine them. The first educational question will not be 'what knowledge is of the most worth?' but 'what kinds of human beings do we wish to produce?' The possibilities virtually defy our imagination. - John Goodlad

There are so many buzzwords in education these days: 21st Century Learning, Social-emotional Learning (SEL), GRIT, the 4-C’s (or the 6-C’s), Response to Intervention, Critical Thinking, STEM, Project-based learning, Guide-on-the-side, Engineering Design Model, Workforce, etc. etc. etc.  It’s hard to keep up with them all or even understand what they all mean.

Social Emotional Learning or SEL first really made its appearance (from my perspective) in the Federal re-authorization of No Child Left Behind, called ESSA.  In additional to academic measures, the Feds want us to use “non-cognitive” measures to assess how well schools are doing.  It came to prominence with a focus on GRIT, and a TED talk by a professor who wrote a book on the subject.  Now SEL is everywhere.  The idea is that kids should learn, not just academics, but the skills and dispositions to be successful in the workforce (aka the 21st Century because human nature magically shifted in 2001, I guess).  So, the purpose of schools has shifted from basic academics to creating a comprehensive person.  The only problem is whose vision of that “correct human being” is being implemented?  And is that really what we want from public education?  Who should determine what kind of human being your child should become?  Who is the “we” in ‘what kinds of human beings do we wish to produce’?  (Does the word produce come across as a bit creepy to anyone else?)

On one hand, I can appreciate and understand that we want kids to be well-rounded, kind-hearted, honest, and sympathetic.  On the other, what is the purpose of public schools?  Well that goes back to the age-old debate.  Everyone thinks of it as something different, and way back when, our district mission statement included “democracy” as the purpose of schools.  I disagree.  I think for public schools, the purpose should be academic excellence.  Everything else, should be left to the individual child and his/her family. That’s not to say that teachers don’t teach, especially by example, kindness and honesty.  They do.  But that’s just part of being a good human being, right?  When we focus on dispositions, we necessarily remove our focus from reading, writing, and [a]rithmetic. Supposedly, we are doing both academics (what we are calling the Right Side of the Pyramid) as well as SEL (the Left Side of the Pyramid).  Our goal should be to educate, not to tell you what the purpose of that education is supposed to be.

The other problem I see, is who decides what the appropriate dispositions are for our children to possess?  And what are those definitions?  I’ve found, too often, sadly, that when someone uses a word that sounds good, their meaning may be completely different from my own.

In Alpine, we are focused on the 6 C’s (4 of which are borrowed from the 21st Century Learning 4 C’s).  They are: Communication, Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration, Character, Citizenship.  All sound great.  But what of the child who is introverted and Collaboration means lots of group-work projects?  She might do very well academically IF she’s allowed to work alone, but in a group?  Not so much.  She is learning that she must go along with the group, and the knowledge she gains isn’t as important as the “collaboration” with others.  It also puts young children in a very difficult position if they disagree with how something is going or what is being said.  Citizenship: what kinds of student advocacy do you want your child engaged in?  What if those citizenship perspectives differ from those of your family?  And Critical Thinking (also known as Higher-order thinking) has at least one definition in education that I would whole-heartedly disagree with.

“…a student attains ‘higher order thinking’ when he no longer believes in right or wrong”. “A large part of what we call good teaching is a teacher´s ability to obtain affective [emotional] objectives by challenging the student’s fixed beliefs. …a large part of what we call teaching is that the teacher should be able to use education to reorganize a child’s thoughts, attitudes, and feelings.” —Benjamin Bloom

In short, it’s wrong to be rewarding personality types instead of the knowledge that every child is capable of acquiring.  It’s also wrong to possibly, modify a child’s thoughts, attitudes and feelings, not through reason and the discovery of truth but by using emotional objectives to challenge their ‘fixed beliefs’, those beliefs instilled in them by their families.

If you agree with this shift, then you will be pleased.  If not, you may want to speak up about this dilution of academics with dispositions.

The State of Utah is Negotiating Away Parental Rights

Thanks to the federal “Every Student Succeeds Act” (ESSA) – a bill over 1,000 pages long that was passed in a rush after Thanksgiving, 2015 – every state must submit an educational “plan” to the Federal Department of Education (DOE) – essentially asking “permission” for educational practices and programs. One of Utah’s “asks” was the submission of a waiver request – I urge you to read Superintendent Dickson’s excellent letter championing parents rights and reaffirming state law. Current ESSA provisions mandate that 95% of students must participate in the computer-adaptive assessments – the tests formerly known as SAGE in Utah. The request for that waiver was denied by the Federal Department of Education.

Translation – Utah to federal DOE: “DOE, is it okay if we have more than 5% of our students opt out of SAGE testing?”

DOE to Utah: “NO.”

After being denied by the unconstitutional Federal DOE, the State Board asked again for a one year reprieve from reporting requirements. Once again we were denied followed up by a threatening letter by Sec. DeVos. Remember this president and his team vowed that they would eliminate the DOE and uphold state sovereignty. This additional denial and subsequent letter threatening funds from Sec. DeVos is further proof that ESSA strangles state sovereignty and the natural rights of the people.

As new negotiation attempts began, it became clear that Utah would only be “granted” its measly federal funding if it was compliant with the 95% rule. PROBLEM: Thanks to the few vigilant Utah parents who have fought this federal intrusion, there is a Utah state law which doesn’t grant parents the right to opt out – but rather affirms that because of natural God-given rights which parents have, Utah schools would be prohibited from draconian tactics which would penalize Utah families and students from opting out of assessments.

In an email from Superintendent Dickson to elected State Board members, dated July 13, 2018, she explained that Utah’s new negotiated educational plan had been approved, stating: “The Department felt strongly that in order to approve our plan, we needed to include language indicating we will comply with federal law. The approved plan does this.” Sadly, thanks to a manipulation of Robert’s Rules during our Aug. 3 board meeting, the Board did not discuss this new plan that was unilaterally presented to Sec. DeVos by the Superintendent and state board’s staff without board approval.

TRANSLATION: The Superintendent and the Board Chair acted independently of the elected board. In short, the public was not given the chance to weigh in on the ESSA plan because those who were elected to represent them were never given the chance to see or to vote on the new plan. Instead, administration and a single board member presented a plan to the federal DOE that puts it in direct conflict with Utah State law–a state law which prohibits the violation of natural parental rights. In the end, after being denied repeatedly, Utah became fully compliant with Federal dictates, setting aside the promise of the state’s ability to forge their own educational path.

And now, thanks to further ESSA provisions, Utah must submit to federal “auditing” – an invasive probe to determine why so many parents are opting out of assessments, and thereby placing non-compliant schools in a status of “failure” or “remediation”, to be put under the purview of federal overseers.

You may ask: exactly what is the paltry amount of funding Utah receives from the federal government? Unfortunately, the answer will shock and anger you: a whopping 6% of our entire educational budget for 2017-2018 school year. Of that, the amount Utah stands to lose if it stops playing this ridiculous game of “Mother May I” is significantly less (around 2% of Utah’s educational budget).

Utah parents, we are literally selling our birthright as the natural guardians of our children for a mess of pottage – and a pathetically meager mess of pottage at that. And why is the amount so small? Because any dollar that is sent to Washington naturally shrinks as it goes through its laundered process of paying the salaries, benefits, and pensions of unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats. That dollar shrinks to practically nothing before it ever comes back to the states. And to add insult to injury, we then must play this game of kissing rings and genuflecting, begging holy dispensation from the federal DOE to even get that pathetic, shrunken amount, and facing even more oppressive penalties if we are further non-compliant.

This isn’t about opting out of a test; this is about where we believe our rights come from. Either our rights come from God or man. It should be unacceptable to all Utah parents that we must ask permission of the federal government concerning our children. I urge parents to contact their state legislators requiring them to come up with that 6% – by spending less somewhere else – so we can take back our children’s education. Please contact your State Board members and let them know that you expect them to defend your parental rights. This is an election year and we the people hold the power. Contact those in office and those running for office and see where they stand.

When I was sworn into office, I took an oath to defend the Constitution. This oath requires me to protect the rights of the people that I represent and this newly accepted ESSA plan is in direct violation of those rights. Parents, I know you are tired and it feels like no matter what we do things keep moving forward. But we need you! As an elected official I am merely the point of a spear. We, the people, are needed to give the elected officials the force and the direction for their actions.

SAGE gets renamed and Utah’s waiver denial

Utah’s state board has just awarded an $80 million contract over 10 years to Pearson and Questar Assessment Inc. to replace the SAGE test that has been used for the past few years. The new tests will be RISE for grades 3-8 and Utah Aspire Plus for grades 9-10.

News article here: https://www.ksl.com/?sid=46336942&nid=148

Those in attendance at this meeting report that this line in the KSL article is really key to this change.

“USBE officials say the new Aspire test is a hybrid between the current Utah Core test questions and the ACT.”

People in attendance at the meeting confirmed that the discussion seemed clear that current Utah Core test questions on SAGE (which the state spent millions creating) would be included in the new tests as part of the test bank.

Wendy Hart mentioned on Facebook that “the former Asst Supt of testing told school board members a few years ago that the main reason they were seriously considering replacing SAGE with Aspire was due to the name recognition of ACT and the hope that parents would find that less toxic than SAGE.”

Compounding this problem is the recent news that Utah’s application to receive a waiver for our high opt-out rate from SAGE has been denied by the feds. You can read the brief letter here:

USED Waiver Denial Letter

The letter specifically mentions Title 1 funds require states to hold “all students to the same State-determined challenging academic standards and annually measures whether students have learned the content those standards demand.” This is why a state standardized test is forced upon students and schools and administrators pressure parents to participate.

As previously pointed out, the amount of funds we get from the feds for Title 1 and special ed total $100 million. In exchange for that money (which they received from us in the first place) they hold our entire state education system hostage.

The letter closes with the need for Utah to “[incentivize] schools to encourage participation of their students in the assessments.”

What this means is over the next year, there may be a push to do away with parental opt-out rights and get parents comfortable with a new test name so they won’t opt out as they have been.

In public comments to the state board, Wendy Hart shared these excellent thoughts.


I am speaking on the denial of the ESSA waiver and ask you to defend Utah’s opt out provision.  The right of parents to direct their own child’s education is protected in Utah law.  But that right is not granted by the State of Utah.  It is merely protected by the laws of our state.  As such, those rights are not rights elected officials can choose to remove at the request of the US Government.

The 10th Amendment states: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.”  In a 1982, Utah Supreme Court ruling, Justice Dallin H. Oaks stated:  “The rights inherent in family relationships…are the most obvious examples of rights retained by the people.  They are “natural,” “intrinsic,” or “prior” in the sense that our Constitutions presuppose them..” Utah Code says: A student’s parent or guardian is the primary person responsible for the education of the student, and the state is in a secondary and supportive role…

Our current opt out provision is consistent with natural rights and our state and federal constitutions.  We stand on solid, legal grounds.  ESSA is a voluntary grant program from the federal government.  They have no legal right to require parents to not opt their kids out of SAGE testing.  And the Department of Ed will never know, see, or care about the students who are harmed by this policy.  The State of Utah has the solemn DUTY to protect and preserve those parental rights.  And yet, at the point that the Feds offer money and ask us to circumvent those natural rights, should we go ahead and do so?  If ESSA were not a voluntary grant, but were instead legally binding on the state of Utah, it would be declared unconstitutional.  Instead, the US Department of Education can bribe Utahns to give up our state sovereignty and the natural rights of our citizens because they offer a caveat of money if we “choose” to comply. If we agree, we “choose” to remove some of the fundamental rights we each swore an oath to protect.

In that same ruling, Justice Oaks explains: “We conclude that the right of a parent not to be deprived of parental rights without a showing of unfitness, abandonment, or substantial neglect is …so basic to our constitutional order that it ranks among those rights referred to in …the [Utah and the] United States Constitution as being retained by the people.”

With a single vote by this body, in exchange for monetary compensation, parents throughout the state of Utah can be deprived of their parental rights without due process, without showing unfitness or substantial neglect.

We all know from past experience that the US Department of Ed is playing a game of political “chicken”.  They are hoping we will back down.  How can they justify penalizing the State of Utah because we are protecting parental rights and fulfilling our oaths to support the US Constitution and the unalienable rights it was designed to protect?  Please stand strong and tell the US Department of Education they must reconsider.  Inform them you are unable to violate the rights of the people you swore an oath to protect.


I strongly agree with Wendy’s statement.

A motion was made and passed at the state board to ask for a 1 year reprieve on the 95% of students must take the test rule. No idea how the feds will react, but Utah must preserve parental rights, and we must get the feds out of the education of our children.

 

California, a Case Study in how Common Core Decimates Math Progress

A few years ago, Rep. Dana Layton was running a bill on our behalf to remove Common Core from Utah. The day it was to be presented in committee, she let us know that there had been some changes to the bill. Instead of the bill removing Common Core, some members of the Utah State Office of Education (USOE) had convinced her to change the bill to a parent review committee over standards. An absolutely worthless bill that unfortunately passed.

I found myself appointed to the elementary math education committee and knew others appointed to the secondary math, science, art, and other committees. Unanimously, our experience was similar across all subjects. We weren’t there for our input.

The bill contained language that the parent committees were to have support from USOE staff to assist in the meetings with whatever the parent committees needed. Instead, USOE members showed up at the meetings and took charge of them, squelching dissenting views.

For example, in my meeting, I took advantage of a moment when one USOE director left the room to pass out a 3-page summary I had prepared of California’s incredible success with it’s math standards and program which over the course of a decade had more than tripled the number of students taking algebra 1 by 8th grade. The really awesome thing about this, was minority groups had a 5-6x increase in proficiency, showing they were narrowing the achievement gap. I wanted to have a discussion about adopting CA’s Green Dot standards and replacing Common Core (since this was to be a “parent” review committee and not a USOE review committee).

During my brief run at trying to introduce this topic, this USOE member returned and immediately announced this was not why we had gathered and we were just going to review the K-6 Common Core standards to make tweaks to them such as determining if one standard belonged in a certain grade or a different one. Nothing major was to change or be discussed.

What this bill did was give the state office of education all the cover they desired for the changes (or non-changes) they wanted to make to the standards. Now they could implement Common Core standards in any subject and say, “the parent review committee passed off on it” (a good portion of the members of the committees were actually appointed by them and had worked with them for years).

This horrible law needs repealed.

Now on to California’s incredible success which I posted about in 2014 on this page:

Solution: Utah should adopt California’s math standards

As this graph shows, California was having massive success in getting more students prepared for algebra 1 by 8th grade.

California's math progress

Now the Hoover Institute has published a research paper on what has happened in California since Common Core has taken over.

The article is here:

https://www.hoover.org/research/californias-common-core-mistake

This graph of student taking algebra 1 by 8th grade says it all. California’s upward climb from their Green Dot standards was working so well, getting students ready for algebra 1 by 8th grade so they could be on track to take calculus by 12th grade, then the Common Core hammer dropped and decimated student achievement.

CA 8th grade drop from CCSSThis incredible drop in students crossed all demographics.

CA minority groupsThe effects damaged the amount of students taking AP calculus exams, hitting the Black community hardest when they were having the biggest increase in takers from the prior standards.

I don’t think this is the social justice outcome the creators of Common Core were hoping for.

This article by Dr. Sandra Stotsky, just published in the New Boston Post, further asks the question if Common Core is racist since Massachusetts also experienced a decline in achievement from it’s Black and Hispanic minority groups under Common Core. It is a second witness to the ill-effects of federal education programs and the consolidation of education into one-size-fits-all programs.

http://newbostonpost.com/2018/05/09/is-common-core-racist-check-out-the-results/

The best thing California and Massachusetts could do for their children is to scrap Common Core and return to the strong education standards they had prior to Bill Gates’ billion-dollar education experiment. Maybe a “class” action suit is in order for all those children whose hopes and dreams have been sent to detention…

What works? Local control and greater freedom for families to do what they know is best for their children. To state legislators and board members, PLEASE, STOP THE EXPERIMENTS!