Common Core

SFPPR News & Analysis is a publication of the Selous Foundation for Public Policy Research, a Washington-based think tank with grassroots interests and Main Street views, whose two pillars, American ‘sovereignty’ and ‘independence,’ shape the foundation’s public policy outlook.

Common Core = Federalized Education is dedicated to revealing the truth behind the Obama power grab, supporting left-wing non-profits and multinational companies, misleadingly named the Common Core State Standards. The CCSS violate privacy through invasive testing and data tracking. All students will be required to pass tests devised by these radicals – ultimately, even those in private schools or home-schooled. Under Common Core, harmful Progressive education techniques, intended to equalize educational outcomes that will destroy Western Civilization and the American way of life, are imposed by federal law.

Headlines & Bylines
  • Catching Up with Some Common Core Profiteers, Beyond the Project Veritas Videos

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    The Big Government-Big Education alliance has also had positive trickle-down effects for professors, who have benefited with publishing contracts and grants for their institutions. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the biggest funder of Common Core, continues to support universities that help in implementing their education initiatives. Professors hopped on the Common Core gravy train at the get-go. There was the curious fact that Bill Ayers gave a keynote address at the 2009 convention of the Renaissance Group, “a national consortium of colleges, universities and professional organizations” dedicated to teaching and education. Now if we could only learn how much Bill Ayers was paid for that keynote speech in Washington in 2009. Continue reading

  • Common Core By a New Name and on Steroids, ‘Every Student Succeeds Act’

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    States must coordinate with eleven different federal statutes and submit their plans for approval by the feds. Statutes include “the Soviet-style Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act that’s designed to connect the K-12 education system to government-controlled workforce-development, the Head Start act that centralizes preschool standards, the Education Sciences Reform Act (which seeks to boost data-collection on students)….” Standards must focus on “minimal workforce-development rather than academic knowledge” – just like Common Core! States will comply or lose their federal money. The federal government will determine “college-and career-readiness,” thus continuing its power grab on campuses. Continue reading

  • The Legacy of Arne Duncan: Common Core and So Much More! (Part 1)

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    Duncan has done his part in Obama’s campaign to expand the reach of the government under the guise of civil rights. He oversaw the expansion of the department’s Office of Civil Rights as the department investigated sexual assault on college campuses. He pushed the nation’s schools to change discipline policies because of the disproportionate suspension and expulsion of minority children. Continue reading

  • Huckabee Hucksterism on Common Core?

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    The authors of Common Core Report: Grading the 2016 GOP Candidates (by American Principles in Action and Cornerstone Policy Research Action) write that Huckabee’s “rebrand advice to the owners and supporters gut-stabbed the national grassroots movement right when it was gaining traction.” Rebranding, or renaming, the Common Core standards, while making superficial changes, has been a favorite strategy of politicians and bureaucrats trying to fool voters and legislators who really are trying to kill Common Core in their states. Continue reading

  • Common Core, Creeping into Everything

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    All kinds of creepy Common Core things are embedded in the Every Child Achieves Act (ECAA), which is really a “rewrite” of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, part of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), according to Dr. Karen R. Effrem of Education Liberty Watch. But while Common Core is popular enough to make its way into vacation Bible schools, politicians know it’s toxic. So they disguise it. American Principles in Action calls the Act “A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing” and offers 21 reasons to oppose the 792-page bill (122 pages longer than the NCLB bill). Continue reading

  • Transforming Education Beyond Common Core: Arne Duncan’s “Classroom of the Future”

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    Replacing our traditional ways of learning, through reading, writing, and study – contemplative and solitary activities—are the communal and hands-on activities promoted in Common Core and now digital learning. Both Common Core and digital learning serve to obscure a large part of the reason for the achievement gap: reading ability. Students who are poor readers lag in other subjects. To cover up this inability, Common Core emphasizes “speaking and listening skills.” Similarly, games offer an opportunity to hide differences in ability. Continue reading

  • Common Core Test ‘Refuseniks’

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    The resistance is coming from the political right and the political left. Those on the right are opposed to federal testing that measures emotional responses more than knowledge and infringes on privacy. The left often rejects accountability standards. So a grassroots movement of “opting out” is taking hold among the states.

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  • Obama Slipping Common Core and Propaganda into “Arts Education”

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    Shortly after President Obama took office, in August 2009, an invitation to a conference call sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts was sent to a handpicked group of 75 “artists, producers, promoters, organizers, influencers, marketers, taste-makers, leaders or just plain cool people.” They were asked to “join together and work together to promote a more civically engaged America and celebrate how the arts can be used for a positive change!”

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  • Common Core: K-16 Education

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    Right around this time of the fall semester, after I’d returned the first batch of papers, I’d hear the complaint from my college freshmen: “But I got all As in high school English!” My colleagues heard it too, but our response was, “But you’re in college now.”

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  • “Transcending” the Idea of “American History” and Forgetting D-Day

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    Recently, Cal Thomas, in what has become a journalistic ritual, bemoaned the loss of knowledge about American history in a column titled “D-Day=Dumb Day for Many.” This historical occasion was the 70th anniversary of D-Day on June 6. Thomas cited a study by the American Council of Trustees and Alumni that showed only 70 percent of recent college graduates knew that D-Day occurred during World War II. This and other dismal statistics revealing historical ignorance were attributed to the fact that very few colleges require survey courses on American history. Continue reading

  • How to Break the Stranglehold

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    As public sector unions and teachers unions began expanding rapidly in the 1960s (today the largest union in the country is the National Education Association), they abandoned their concerns for students, parents, and their local communities. Since then, our education schools have become training centers for social activists who call themselves teachers but are versed better in race, class, gender, and social justice than they are in the subjects they should be teaching. We have a top-heavy public school system that is more expensive than ever. Teachers who are incompetent or abusive are almost impossible to fire. Pay and job security are based not on performance but seniority.

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  • Dumbing-down the Nation’s Classrooms

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    A few months ago, I was having a debate with a former Georgia state school superintendent who, along with a state senator (both Republicans), had made a pitch for the Common Core by invoking high educational “standards” and “preparing students for the twenty-first-century global economy.” During our conversation, I complained that Common Core devalues literature. “Believe me,” he replied, “I’m a lover of literature.  I love to read.” Continue reading

  • Common Core: Teaching to the New Test – PART I

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    It took the sleeping giant a while to figure out what was going on with the Common Core (so-called) State Standards. Put together largely by a well-connected Washington, D.C., non-profit called Achieve, these education “standards” were attached to the Race-to-the-Top contest in 2009 for $4.35 billion in stimulus funds.

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