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By Nancy Thorner – 

The Heartland Institute hosted a “Stop Fed Ed” event at the Andrew Breitbart Freedom Center on Wednesday, October 12. The event featured Cora Weber, who discussed her role in the grassroots effort to stop Common Core and (eventually) eliminate the federal Department of Education.

Ms. Weber is a second-generation home-educator, single mom of six, and president of the Illinois chapter of the United States Parents Involved in Education (USPIE.ORG). For nearly 15 years, Cora has worked as an advocate for children by promoting awareness of the socialist progressive agenda in government schools. Weber is currently developing an initiative to guide and encourage religious institutions to adopt a more central role in the education of America’s children.

As president of the Illinois chapter of USPIE, Weber is aligned with the STOP FED ED movement, a campaign led by parents, taxpayers, and educators committed to ending the U.S. Department of Education and Common Core, returning control over education policy to the states, where it belongs. Michelle Malkin serves as an advisor to STOP FED ED and there are 33 chapter presidents. The names and contact information for state chapter presidents can be located by checking this website.

As Heartland’s project manager for education transformation Lennie Jarratt said in his introductory remarks, “Liberals believe that government is the answer to everything instead of the free market.” As to why there is a federal department of education, it’s certainly not about children, Weber said. Control through federal dollars amounts to big business. The experiment with federal control of local public schools has gone on for half a century, and it has failed. Children have suffered by being treated as rats in some social engineering laboratory.

The fight against Common Core has exposed the failures of those trying to force a federally-based one-size-fits-all curriculum on states and local school districts. Even strong Common Core supporters realize the name is toxic and have accepted the premise that the federal government should not be dictating curriculum.

Remarks by Cora Weber

Weber’s initial remarks were accepted with nodding agreement by those in attendance: “The present system is stifling instead of letting children flourish.” Weber discussed the background Department of Education: In 1867 the U.S. Congress passed legislation to establish the first Department of Education. President Andrew Jackson signed the legislation that created the department with miniscule staff, resources, and power. It was a non-cabinet-level agency with a mission of improving American education by disseminating sound education information to local-and state-level authorities. In 1979, Jimmy Carter created an independent, cabinet-level U.S. Department of Education as a political favor to the teachers’ unions. It was not linked to the Interior Department or the Federal Security Agency (FSA), as the Department had been since its founding in 1867. Few remember that in 1980, Ronald Reagan campaigned for the presidency on a platform that included abolishing the U.S. Department of Education, as the department had failed to deliver either better test scores or more rigorous curriculum dedicated to academic excellence.

With the establishment of a cabinet-level Department of Education (DOE) came a 60 percent increase in education funding by 2015, but for what? In 1980, the department’s budget was $11.5 billion. By 2015 the DOE’s budget had mushroomed to $67 billion – a 600 percent increase – with these negative results:

  • stagnant test scores
  • huge bureaucraciesmassive
  • increases in the cost of education

In Retrospect: From 2003 to 2015, when Common Core was up and running in many states several years prior to 2015, the 8th grade proficiency level in math and reading was deplorable at 33 percent. Alabama, which traditionally has scored in the low 30s, dropped to 30th in the nation – making the state worse off than it had been before Common Core. 

Weber asked: If the results from federal imposed education is so dismal, why don’t state leaders just say to the federal government, “We don’t want your little crumbs”?  Some wonder how states will survive without federal education dollars. Here’s how: 91 percent of education funding comes from state and local funds. The federal government provides 9 percent. – but with that 9 percent, the feds control 100 percent of the classrooms. Consider also the millions of man hours that are required to meet federal education mandates. Also, sending funds to D.C. and back to states is not efficient.

ESSA as Stealth Replacement for Common Core

Unfamiliar to many attendees were Weber’s remarks about the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), legislation signed by President Obama on December 10, 2015, to rewrite the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and replace the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).

NCLB breaks Common Core down into 11 different programs, which must all link with Common Core standards. There are many faults with the bill, which fails to fix the problems in Common Core. A required survey actually asks children how many times they carry a gun or a knife, and whether or not they wear a seat belt. Such personal information should be none of the government’s business! 

There was likewise a $25 billion increase in the funding of NCLB and a 2 percent yearly increase after that with no sunset. Despite glaring faults, which were noted at the time, Senate education committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) praised the bill to his fellow senators in a bipartisan agreement made with Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-Wash.).

Because NCLB gives unprecedented power to the Secretary of Education, even if a state wants to establish its own educational standards, they must align with the 11 NCLB programs – which the Secretary of Education can then reject if he finds them lacking. Also troubling is that private companies were called in to create the eleven programs.

Cora Weber Pegs Department of Education As Unconstitutional

Providing guidance is an important part of what Weber seeks to do when making her presentations. She wondered why we are willing to let bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. define the term, and determine what education should look like. Weber further stated: “The Department of Education is unconstitutional.”How so? Because the 10th Amendment directs that powers of the federal government not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution shall be left to the states or the people. There is no Department of Education in the Constitution. “Nowhere in the Constitution is the federal government delegated the power to regulate or fund elementary or secondary education,” Weber said.

She also emphasized how the educational system needs to “align with principles that never change, and not the system that bureaucrats are trying to impose upon the people.” Weber further warned that home-schoolers are not immune from Common Core, which promotes relativism and socialism, as colleges are more and more requiring that students be educated in the Common Core method through admissions testing. The good news is that the free market is coming up with solutions to circumvent what is happening. To find out what a child needs to know to graduate for high school check here. The requirements for graduation in Illinois are quite lenient. 

What Can We Do to Help Stop Fed Ed?

Suggestions from Cora Weber include:

Q&A with Cora Weber 

Question: This nation was founded on the rule of law. What happens when individuals with great power and clout are seen as being above the law?

Answer:  This nation must return back to the Constitution which represents the foundation of our nation. Law affects every sphere of our society as set forth in our Constitution. Presently, Weber is reading George Orwell’s 1984 to her six children. It is important that great literature be taught, because it defines who we are, where they came from, and where we are going.  

Question: How can we circumvent Common Core?

Answer: Weber discussed a “badge-based system.” When a course is completed, and the student has demonstrated that he/she knows the material, a badge is awarded which can then be taken by the child wherever he goes. Churches, at one time, were very prominent in schooling children, and we must once again take up this mantle. It doesn’t cost all that much money to educate children well. But there is a problem: Many churches are seeped in humanistic outreach and grounded in progressive ideology. There are however, lots of fine courses for free on-line.

View here the YouTube video of The Heartland Institute’s Stop Fed Ed event with Cora Weber of USPIE.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9PglRPYiC8

Coming Events at The Heartland Institute

3939 N. Wilke Road

Arlington Heights, Illinois 60004

Free, with supper included, but registration is required.

Oct 26, 2016

Women in Politics

5:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Listen, learn, and get inspired from women who are shaping free-market governing policies in America just days before the 2016 United States presidential election.

Nov 2, 2016

Alex Newman: Crimes of the Educators

5:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Come join Alex Newman, co-author of Crimes of the Educators, as he discusses his exposé of crimes perpetrated by the education establishment against the American people and, especially, against American children.

Nov. 9, 2016

Heartland Movie Night: ‘The Call of the Entrepreneur’

5:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Don’t face your uncertain, post-election future alone. Face it with friends at The Heartland’s Institute’s next ‘Movie Night.’

 

Monday, April 11, 2016

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By Nancy Thorner –

As part of The Heartland Institute’s continuing series of book and movie events, specifically designed to showcase freedom, the book, “Drilling through the Core”, edited with an introduction by Peter W. Wood, was presented by the author on Wednesday, April 6 in the newly named Andrew Breitbart Freedom Center, located at Heartland’s Arlington Heights facility, 3939 North Wilke Road, Arlington Heights, IL 60004.

As noted on the back outside cover of “Drilling through the Core”

“For the first time in history Americans face the prospect of a unified set of national standards for 8-12 education.  While this goal sound reasonable, and Common Core has been presented as a state-led effort, it is anything but.  This book analyzes Common Core from the standpoint of it deleterious effects on curriculum — language arts, mathematics, history, and more — as well as its questionable legality, its roots in the aggressive spending of a few wealthy donors, its often-underestimated costs, and the untold damage it will wreck on American higher education.  At a time when more and more people are questioning the wisdom of federally-mandated one-size-fits-all solutions, “Drilling through the Core” offers well-considered arguments for stopping Common Core in its tracts.” 

Peter W. Wood is an anthropologist and former provost.  He was appointed president of the National Association of Scholars in January 2009.  Before that he served as NAS’s executive director (2007-2008) and as provost of the King’s College in New York City (2005-2007).  Wood is the author of several books, including “A Bee in the Mouth: Anger in America Now” in 2007 and in 2003 “Diversity: The Invention of a Concept.”  

Peter Wood was introduced by Lennie Jarratt, Project Manager – Education Transformation at The Heartland Institute.

According to Peter Wood, “The Common Core Is Dead”.  It died of parental opposition, teacher opposition, political defection, and perhaps most importantly, flat-out academic failure.  But it would be foolish to think that dead things can’t hurt us.  Consider Bernie Sander’s resurrection of the Socialist economic theories, twenty-five years after the burial of the Soviet Union.  Dead things can likewise also take the living with them, as in the case of Jeb Bush with his unconditional support of Common Core, from which he realized sizable financial gains. 

Common Core was first perceived by architects, David Coleman and Jason Zimba, as a solution to the achievement gap between White and Asians on one hand, and Blacks and Hispanics on the other hand. Finding this concept difficult to sell to the general public, the achievement gap premise was changed.  Common Core would now make all students ready for college and careers.

According to Peter Wood, Common Core was never intended to raise standards.  Instead, it was a plan to establish a nationwide floor that would also be a ceiling.  In other words, Common Core “was anti-excellence wrapped in the gift wrap and tinsel of excellence.”

A study by the liberal Brookings Institution in March of this year found no evidence that Common Core State Standards have made much of a difference during the six-year period when NAEP scores have been stagnant.  The good news in the report is that Common Core does not appear to be the cause for the NAEP stagnation, as states not accepting Common Core suffered the same stagnation. 

This troubling stagnation, as explained by Mr. Wood, has its basis in the following: an increase of single-parent families (the top factor); family dysfunction; financial insecurity, and immigration, all of which will result in poor school performance, and which likewise prove that changing the standards for K-12 education was never going to change the level performance of students. Common Core’s fine-tuned curriculum has seemingly moved in the opposite direction, which explains why SAT and ACT scores have dipped in the Common Core era. 

Common Core Language Arts and Math Standards evaluated

There has been a decline of instruction in literature, to be replaced by non-fiction.  Why?  Because Common Core insists that students learn best from treating everything as informational texts, despite the ability of literature to teach students how to read beyond the literal text.  As such students learn how to see the forest and not just the pine needles.  Common Core leads students into the territory of pine needles.

Regarding Common Core English Language Arts own standards, Mr. Wood knows of no college that would value an approach to literature that chops everything into fine pieces and then dissolves content so students come away not knowing why they read “Moby Dick” or any other book.  However, such a spoon diet of fragmented versions of great literature conforms to how Common Core views literature.  In its fragmented approach, Common Core is able to ward off literature as dangerously privilege or even elitist.   

Common Core math slows down the pace of math instruction.  Instead of third grade before pre-Common Core, when almost all state expected students to master basic addition and subtraction, Common core decided fourth grade would do.  Instead of 5th grade, the multiplication table and long division has been moved to the 6th grade.  Algebra is kicked up to the 9th grade.  Often there is no room for pre-calculus instruction, logarithms are barely mentions, parametric equations are absent, and Arithmetic series are omitted.  Adults can live without this mathematical knowledge, but the door is being shut for millions of students for careers in fields where a solid foundation in math is critical. 

The thinning out of math standards betrays the two main promises made by Common Core architects, already mentioned David Coleman and Jason Zimba, that the Standards would make students college and career ready, and that the Standards would be internationally bench marked to at least as high as the standards in countries that excel in math.  Last year the U.S. ranked a dismal 28th.   

Many parents have noticed that there children are being taught tediously complicated forms of computation in primary school, which are deliberately meant to drive a wedge between parent and child.  Geometry is now being taught in a way tried before in the Soviet Union in the 1980’s, where it was deemed a failure and discarded.

The aims of Common Core

As to what kind of people we want our children to become, as inferred by the nature of Common Core standards, the outcome is summarily set forth by Peter Wood:

Common Core aims to make children into well-organized utility-maximizers — people who do not waste time contemplating hard problems or dreaming big dreams, but who have a ready means to cut things down to the size they already know how to handle.  The perfect job for a Common Core graduate is probably coding. 

Parroting the confession made by one of the Common Core architect, Common Core defenders are now using the excuse that the initial  “college ready” promise of Common Core was meant to convey a readiness to attend a “community” college.

Peter Wood is adamant that Common Core is finished and that a resurrection by die-hard partisans can’t be achieved, for dead is dead!  Mr. Wood mused how the Common Core mess will be cleaned up; who will pay for it, and what will come next? 

Not so sure about “dead is dead”

Given the millions of dollars the Gates Foundation provided to set the stage for Common Core (some of which was used as bribe money to convince cash-strapped states to sign on to Common Core sight unseen) to the large investments spent in school districts on textbooks, teacher training, and computers to support the Common Core tests, the Common Core curriculum can’t be eliminated just by wishing it were so by waving a magic wand.

Consider what happened this past December when both the U.S. Senate and the House voted to continue this nation’s federal boondoggle in education.  Despite talking points about getting the feds out of creating standards, there is still a requirement that states continue to maintain high state standards, a clear nod to the continuation of the much-hated Common Core State Standards.  Furthermore, states must continue to submit their state plans for review and approval by the U. S. Secretary of Education.

Eagle Forum described the bill, “Every Student Succeeds”, as Common Core by a New Name and on Steroids.  Supported by the owners of the Common Core standards, the bill (S 1177) was guided through Congress by Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN).

Concluding thoughts

Suggestions given by Mr. Wood as to how parents can survive waiting out the bad years ahead: 

1) Move children out of public schools.

2) Keep children in public schools but work extra hard at home to compensate for Common Core’s poor delivery of essential knowledge and it mis-channeling of children’s intellectual development. 

Peter Wood’s current focus is to make less harsh the upstream damage to higher education.  One of his battles will be to fight the continuing effort of the College Board, under David Coleman’s stewardship, to institutionalize as much of the Common Core as possible through the SAT’s and Advanced Placement examinations.

A live stream youtube video of the Patrick Wood event can be seen here

Upcoming Heartland events in April will feature F. W. Buckley, author of “The Way Back: Restoring the Promise of America” on Thursday, April 14, from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. 

On Wednesday, April 18, Brian Fojtik and Victoria Vasconcellos will speak about the impact the new “vapor wars” (e-cigarettes) have on science, public policy, business and jobs?  

Friday, January 22, 2016

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By Nancy Thorner and Bonnie O’Neil – 

Author Patrick Wood warned us that America’s schools were in danger back in 2005. In his article “Global Schooling: The Hijacking of American Education”, he equates the virtual takeover (or hijacking) of American education to that of seizing control of a moving vehicle by use of force, in order to reach an alternate destination. The time period for this hijacking coincides with the economic plundering of America.  According to Patrick Wood, the takeover started roughly in 1973 and is still in progress today.

The success of this globalism agenda rides on the back of manipulating the minds of students to reflect patterns of global dogma. The students may be academically inferior to their 1970 counterparts, but scholarship was easily traded for the globalist-friendly character traits of a globalized citizen, one who will not question the globalist agenda but instead welcome it as an inevitable evolution of civilization.

Wood’s article takes the reader through the timetable of Phase 1 for executing the Plan: the PREPARATORY PERIOD, 1980 to 1995, when the Globalist Plan went into high gear with the establishment of the Center on Education Policy (CEP), which was founded and financed by Globalist foundation money and staffed by operators who would carry out their elite wishes. Its Statement of Purpose has the audacity to proclaim “We do not represent any special interests.” What follows, however, doesn’t jive with the previous Statement’s denial of special interests representation: “We try to help citizens make sense of the conflicting opinions and perceptions about public education and create the conditions that will lead to better public schools.”

On the surface, President George W. Bush’s “No Child Left Behind Act” passed in 2002 seems to address turning the education system around, but instead it was the capstone of an effort stated in the 1980s to federalize education for all students.  NCLB achieved two major goals for global education operatives: For the first time in the history of the U.S., all education standards fell under the umbrella of the federal government. Second, it created a mechanism for mandatory national testing and data collection for children in public schools.

Through the monetary bribery of states, the Common Core curriculum had its beginnings in the Obama administration in 2010.  States were permitted to drop the highly unpopular “No Child Left Behind Act” (NCLB), if they agreed to accept Common Core.  Most states signed on sight unseen and before the new education program was even tested.  

Presently, Common Core curriculum has been accepted by most states.  Cause for great concern is warranted, because Common Core specifies the textbooks and curriculum that must be used in carrying out the Common core lesson plans, curriculum that contains the indoctrination material of the Global elites. Common Core’s “recommended” reading list originated from one centrally controlled location.

Why would Global elitists, through the ACLU, want all vestiges of Judeo-Christian tradition removed from the classroom?  Their Global education agenda would not and could not work as long as students could compare the elitists’ propaganda to the uncompromising Judeo-Christian ethic. In Communist Russia, Lenin and Stalin’s solution to Christianity and Judaism was simple: kill the Christians and Jews.

The Deceptiveness of Common Core

Dr. Sandra Stotsky, an EducationViews Contributor, was the only English Language Arts “content expert” on the Common Core Validation Committee, She and her teammate, retired math professor John Milgram, have now become critics of the merits of the Common Core State Standards.  Stotsky claims that the Common Core writers were not qualified.  Although the states that adopted Common Core’s standards did so legally (usually by a vote of their State Board of Education), many state policymakers deliberately minimized public awareness and discussion of the standards’ academic deficits in order to ensure the passage of Common Core and its continued usage.

Some State officials chose to deceive the public about aspects of Common Core in outright defiance of the expressed will of State Legislators, who wished to revise or eliminate Common Core’s standards.  This was the situation in South Carolina, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Louisiana, and New Jersey.

Dr. Stotsky’s article of Dec. 24, 2015, explains how State Departments of Education deliberately deceived parents about Common Core, apparently using a common excuse that “the end justifies the means.”  Following are some of the popular ploys used to deceive the public:

  • Giving PARCC, a national Common Core-base test, another name to minimize Common Core’s involvement.
  • Using restricted review methodology that inhibits statewide reviewers from a standard-by-standard review.
  • Stacking review committees with Common Core partisans and giving them limited purview to minimize participation by undergraduate teaching faculty in Mathematics and English. 
  • Skewing public discussion with unbalanced public forums that used speakers who were biased for Common Core.
  • Relying on rigged external reports, seemingly unbiased external reports by groups such as the Thomas B. Fordham Institute and Achieve, Inc., both of which are funded by the Gates Foundation that had supplied millions of dollars in the Common Core project.

Common Core given new life by a bi-partisan Congress

Lest anyone think that acts of deception about Common Core have come only from one side of the political aisle and/or specific State Departments of Education, perhaps the greatest act of deception is the preposterous claim about the thrust of the recent re-authorization of ESEA by its major author Senator Lamar Alexander.

In an op-ed in The Tennessean on December 12, 2015, Senator Alexander implied that he had “repealed the federal Common Core mandate and reversed the trend toward a national school board.” Instead, as Peter Cunningham, a former official in the USDE pointed out, “the new law that the Senator from Tennessee is so proud of, the Every Student Succeeds Act, now mandates the very thing he rails against.”

Under the new law, every state must adopt “college-and career-ready” standards. Thus, the new law all but guarantees that Common Core State Standards—or a reasonable imitation under a different name—will likely remain in place in most states.” Senator Lamar Alexander, former president of the University of Tennessee, has managed to deceive not only his constituents in Tennessee and the entire country but also himself.

See here Thorner’s published article of January 11, 2016, at Illinois Review: “Republicans Accused of Cynical Scheme that Led to Odious Education Law” (the “Every Student Succeed Act” or S1177).  Common Core activists tried for months to warn Congress that the new Federal Education Bill was a disaster that would cement, not overturn, the odious progressive-education philosophies of the Obama Administration,  Except for 64 House members (click here to see how your member voted) and 12 senators (click here to see how your senators voted) who were brave enough to buck Republican leadership, their warnings were dismissed. 

Is Common Core a ruse to sell books?

A recent article dated January 12, 2016, defined Common Core as a disaster in terms of delivering quality and meaningful education.  Instead, it’s a system designed for Sustainable Development and Technocracy. Nevertheless, bookmakers and publishers are raking in money hand-over-fist as they replace virtually every book in the U.S. school system with the new curricula.  The same publishers will sell another round of books to put things back where they were when Common fails. Purchasing Common Core material is a must, as testing is geared to the Common Core Curriculum.

The West Coast sales manager from one of the nation’s biggest school book sellers, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, told an undercover muckraker with Project Veritas that “I hate kids.  Don’t even kid yourself for a heartbeat.”  She added that “it’s all about the money. What are you, crazy? It’s all about the money.  You don’t think that the educational publishing companies are in it for education, do you? No, they’re in it for the money.”  Naturally the sales manager was fired when her remarks reached her employer, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

States Common Core standards exist

This map shows the state level adoption of Common Core with its progressive and brainwashing curriculum.

States that have withdrawn:  Indiana, South Carolina.

States that never adopted Common Core:  Virginia, Texas, Nebraska, and Alaska.

Partially adoption state:  Minnesota.   

The most recent polls indicate Common Core is becoming more and more unpopular, as parents experience it and the public becomes more knowledgeable about it.  Whether you are a parent who has concerns, or a citizen who objects to a federalized education system conceived and initiated by suspicious sources with an agenda, it is important for you to speak out and let your voice be heard. 

Join the fight with millions of concerned citizens and parents who realize the new national system is not right for America.  Attend school board meetings to make public statements; contact your local, state and federal representatives to express your concerns.  Oh, and tell all those officials that our forefathers specified education was exclusively the responsibility of each State government and they need to take back their job and keep control at the local level.  That might frustrate those who promote Global education and a one-World government, but for those of us who value our local sovereignty, we will fight back against the wealthy elitists’ agenda, because we love the U.S.A.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

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Saturday, December 12, 2015

Thorner/O’Neil: Islam promoted in U.S. classrooms via Common Core

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By Nancy Thorner and Bonnie O’Neil – 

 

Setting the stage for Islam in the classroom dates back to 2001. A situation arose in the Byron Union School District in Byron, California, after the school district instituted a three-week unit on Islam for 7th graders.  Students picked Muslim names, recited Islamic prayers, and celebrated Ramadan.

When parents sued the school on the grounds that the course was “officially endorsing a religion,” the U.S. Supreme Court rejected their appeal, leaving intact an earlier ruling by the liberal Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The ruling claimed that the Islamic unit did not violate the Constitution as it had an “instructional purpose.” The unpopular decision left its opponents asking how it was possible to know intents and ignore ultimate results. 

 

Enter Common Core

 

Another reason Islam is now being taught far more often, while religions like Christianity are not given the same attention, can be traced to the federal government and the Obama Administration at initiated and championed Common Core. The new highly controversial education system was quietly accepted, sight unseen, by most states in 2010. Opponents continue to lament that states were bribed to do so, largely with the promise states could drop the unpopular “No Child Left Behind” contract and its strict stipulations tied to student and teacher performance.   

 

Most parents would be both surprised and concerned to learn that their child’s education is influenced by a non-American public company (Pearson Education). The company, owned in a large part by alleged terrorism financiers, orchestrated the development and implementation of Common Core.  It helped define the standards and evaluates teacher and student performance, instead of state or federal agencies.  As a result, it could be said that the American government essentially handed over our public school education to foreign interests. The Libyan Investment Authority (with investments from Qatar, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia) funded Pearson Education’s implementation of Common Core.  The public should be aware that major financial donations from billionaire Bill Gates promoted Common Core and thus was a factor in how the controversial system caused one of the swiftest and most remarkable shifts in education policy in U.S. history. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation didn’t just bankroll the development of the Common Core State Standards, with more than $200 million, their foundation also built political support across the country, advertising and persuading state governments to make systemic and costly changes to accommodate it.     

 

Jeb Bush’s ties to Common Core

 

Why is Jeb Bush such a staunch supporter of Common Core?   Jeb has championed Common Core and claimed its implementation has improved the education standards in his state of Florida. While that may be true, it is not the standards that has caused the national controversy.   It is the federal government’s involvement in creating, promoting, and “bribing” states to accept a national education system, when the Constitution opposes such federal interference.  Bush’s ties to Common Core were through his creation of the Foundation for Excellence in Education in 2008, following his two terms as Governor of Florida.  The foundation forged an unusual role mixing politics and policy by drafting legislation and paying travel expenses for state officials and lobbying lawmakers and by connecting public officials with industry executives seeking government contracts.

 

Many conservatives have become skeptical of national efforts to improve education following the “No Child Left Behind Act” championed by Jeb Bush’s brother, then President George W. Bush. Jeb’s foundation is viewed as another example of powerful interests taking classroom decisions away from local control and ultimately the parents. Consider also that Bush’s Foundation has secured $5.2 million since 2010 from the Bill and Melinda Gates FoundationSubstantial amounts of money played a huge part in the design and implementation of Common Core, as teacher unions and public officials were wooed by its promoters.  There was little or no input/ involvement from teachers, parents, or the public. 

 

Common Core requirements for teaching of Islam

 

There have been many known abuses of Islam presented in our public classrooms throughout America since the implementation of Common Core.  The following are examples of such abuses:  

  • Attend public school-sponsored trips to mosques, which also required non-Muslim girls to wear head scarves;
  • Questioned whether the Holocaust was actually a political scheme created to influence public emotion;
  • Learn Islamic indoctrination points via vocabulary lessons and world history from an Islamic perspective;
  • Pledge allegiance to the flag in Arabic;
  • Have school days off for “Muslim holy days;”
  • Proselytize to younger school children by creating a pamphlet about Islam to “introduce Islam to 3rd graders” by describing Allah as the same God of Christians and Jews;
  • Recite in class the Shahada (“There is no God but Allah”) and kneel and learn to pray the Muslim call to prayer.

There is nothing necessarily wrong with children learning about Islam.  Devoting more time to learning about Islam while reducing or even excluding Christianity has huge numbers of parents complaining.  Tennessee Representative Andy Holt was one of several officials who agree that Common Core has a “strong bias in favor of Islam and needs to be removed.”  He went on to say “Many of our children are not being taught the Ten Commandments in school, but instead the Five Pillars of Islam and the “Prophet” Muhammad as a sovereign to Jesus Christ.”   Sadly, complaints from concerned parents have not been given sufficient attention, and the objectionable Common Core curriculum continues to be taught in classrooms across this nation.

 

Common Core Social Studies advances Islam 

 

Maury County, Tennessee, is in the heart of the Bible Belt.  When local church ladies discovered that school children had been forced to declare, “There is no God but Allah,” they naturally became upset.  Seventh grade students at the Spring Hill Middle School had just spent three weeks covering Islam in a Social Studies class which enraged some parents who claimed the lessons crossed the line and became more like indoctrination and proselytization.

 

Parents in High Mount School in Swansea, Illinois were outraged that a public school would paint a positive picture of Islam by teaching impressionable young students that Islam bears no responsibility for the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the United States.  Such teaching does reflect the growing trend in American education to portray Islam as a Religion of Peace, how Islam is a misunderstood force for good, or that Islam is just another world religion that is no better or worse than other religions. 

 

In the neighboring state of Wisconsin, Union Grove High School students were asked to pretend that they were Muslims for a 10th grade World History writing assignment.  Teacher Beth Urban asked students to write a five paragraph essay in which they were to pretend they are a Muslim male or female in the U.S.  Per instructions: “Give three examples of what you do daily for your religion and any struggles you face,” Urban instructed.  Parents questioned how this assignment related to a World History class and whether similar assignments were given for other religions. 

 

Regarding the text book, “World History,” it is a Common Core approved high school history textbook that is used in many states.   In Volusia County Florida, hundreds protested against the books obvious ode to Islam. And rightly so, as an entire chapter is dedicated to the virtues of Islam and not one chapter to Christianity.  A major promoter of the Common Core Islam curriculum is the Islamic Society of North America (a Muslim Brotherhood front group) along with Hamas CAIR. It behooves every parent to check whether “World History” is an approved textbook in their school districts.  

 

Another incident taking place in Florida which involved the controversial “World History” textbook occurred at Lyman High School.  Parent Ron Wagner was outraged when he read from part of his son’s world history book, “There is no god, but God.  Muhamad is the messenger of God.”  Ron Wagner had reason to be upset, as he was not reading the “Five Pillars of Islam” from the Quran, but rather from his son’s 10th-grade world history book.  As Wagner claimed:  “Students were instructed to recite this prayer as the first Pillar of Islam, as it was written on the board and at the teacher’s instruction.” 

 

A Tennessee high school decided to revise its field trip policy after a group of freshmen were taken to an Islamic mosque where they were given copies of the Quran.   A student who opted out of the trip was given a worksheet that alleged Muslims treated their conquered people better than the United States treated minorities.  The students were in an honors world studies class at Hendersonville High School and the field trips to the mosque, as well as a Hindu temple, were part of a three-week course on world religions.  Parents objected to the trips and wondered why the school would tour a mosque but not a Christian church or a Jewish synagogue.

 

Although not related to Islam indoctrination as was noted above via Common Core Social Studies curriculum, parents in Farmville, North Carolina want to know why their children were given a Common Core vocabulary worksheet assignment in a senior English class that promoted the Prophet Muhammad and the Islamic faith.  As stated by a Farmville Central High School student, “It really caught me off guard.”  Another student asked:  “If we are not allowed to talk about any other religions in school, how is this appropriate?”

 

It would be unreasonable to deny that Islam is being presented to impressionable students as a religion of peace, while avoiding the fact that Islam extremists are murdering innocent people throughout the World today.

 

An excellent article was written in 2007 by Ronald R. Cherry for the American Thinker:  “The Judeo-Christian Values of America. ” Everyone would benefit from reviewing these Judeo-Christian values which played a foundational role in America, beginning with the “Declaration of Independence”.  These principles and truths are what led to America’s exceptionalism, and for us to remain a great country, they must be repeatedly taught to our children at all levels of their education.  That is what will assure America remains the amazing country for which our forefathers fought and died.  Anything less must not be tolerated by parents, educators or the public.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

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Monday, August 17, 2015

Monday, August 17, 2015

Thursday, April 23, 2015

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By Nancy Thorner – 

The results of CNN poll on April 20, placed former Governor Jeb Bush, as of yet an undeclared candidate, at the top of the Republican Party’s presidential picks for 2016.  With no competition Hillary won the top spot for the Left.  Although name recognition is helpful in attracting supporters, in regard to Jeb Bush, how much is really known about him?  Jeb describes himself as a “Conservative Reformer”, but it will be remembered that his brother’s presidency exhibited “Compassionate Conservatism”.  After G.W. was elected president conservatives were not at all pleased with what his compassionate conservatism was all about.

It would be negligent not to explore and investigate Jeb Bush, the candidate. Is Bush really the conservative he vigorously touts as being when he served as a two-term Florida governor? There are reports that claim Jeb Bush governed as a conservative, but a number of years have passed since Jeb completed his second term in 2007.

As detailed in Part 1 of “Jeb Bush, a Conservative, a Moderate, or a Globalist,” Bush didn’t allow challengers to stand in his way when running and winning the governorship two times in Florida.  As such it is fair to use past behavior to present insight into Jeb Bush’s possible conduct in his yet-to-be-announced presidential bid.  A  Crowley Political Report on Feb. 26 questioned whether Jeb Bush would act like a bully if and when he declares himself a GOP presidential candidate. Since Bush vowed that he would run for president only if he could do so “joyfully”, the bully concept cannot be dismissed.

Noted in a New York Times article is that behind the scenes Bush and his aides have pursued the nation’s top campaign donors, political operatives, and policy experts with an eye to rapidly locking up the highest-caliber figures, making it all but impossible for other Republican candidates to assemble a high-octane campaign team. In each of his governor elections in 1998, and 2002, Bush attempted to corner the market, willing to “joyfully” hurl a fastball straight to the noggin of anyone who dared to get in his way.  This Times story is worth reading for more insight in the “Bush way of campaigning joyfully.”

As observed when Jeb Bush made an appearance in Nashua, New Hampshire, on April 18, Bush may very well mirror his actions that twice helped him win the governorships of Florida.  As reported on April 18, ties between Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (a 43-year-old son of Cuban immigrants) and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (a 62-year-old member of one of the nation’s most powerful political dynasties), political allies for more than a decade, are fraying as the Republican presidential campaign picks up steam.  In public, mentor Bush and protege Rubio, have avoided criticizing each other since Rubio announced his candidacy, but Bush allies have started quietly spreading negative information about Rubio’s record.  So far Rubio’s team has declined to respond in kind.

As Al Cardenas remarked, a Bush adviser also close to Rubio: “Sparks are going to fly. For the first time in our country’s history you’ve got two guys from the same town in the same state from same party running in the same primary.” A well connected individual in Florida told Thorner that it was Jeb Bush who pushed Rubio into supporting amnesty in the Senate, which in turn hurt Rubio with the Republican conservative base. Jeb wasn’t pleased when Rubio withdrew his amnesty position.

Early on there are cues pointing to likelihood that Jeb Bush is being endorsed and funded heavily by the Republican establishment.  As Phyllis Schlafly relates in her book. “A Choice Not An Echo.” in early 1936 a little group of secret kingmakers (prominent financiers and industrialists) laid long-range plans to control the Republican Party. This group has used every trick to dictate the choice of the Republican presidential nominee up to now.  It was the kingmakers who were responsible for derailing and destroying Senator Barry Goldwater in the election of 1964. In the eyes of the kingmakers, it was anyone but Goldwater, preferring, as they did, the continuation of the policies of Democrat incumbent Lyndon Johnson to those of Goldwater.

With this in mind, there is every reason to believe the kingmakers of today, although faces have changed, are partial to Jeb Bush as the 2016 Republican presidential nominee. The perception being, Bush is himself a loyal Republican Establishment member and also a confirmed globalist, following in the steps of his father (G.H.) and brother (G.W.). Writing in the Christian Science Monitor Mark Sappenfield had this to say about Jeb Bush as a yet undeclared candidate:

“Bush III is not yet in the presidential race, though he is apparently raising enough money to singlehandedly send Richard Branson to Jupiter, so there’s not much mystery about his intentions”. . . “Bush’s hundreds of millions are as good an indicator as any right now of where the establishment’s money is (literally).”

To some it might seem conspiratorial to imply that the mechanics are already being set in motion to ensure that Jeb Bush is the 2016 Republican candidate.  Consider this:  Even before Jeb Bush has officially declared his candidacy for 2016, he is preparing to give the traditional campaign a makeover by turning some of his campaign’s central functions over to a separate political organization (a PAC) that can raise unlimited amounts of money.  Not that other candidates haven’t done so, but for Bush the potential benefits are enormous. Campaigns can raise only $2,700 per donor for the primary and $2,700 for the general election. A super PAC, however, enables a candidate to raise unlimited cash from individuals, corporations and groups such as labor unions.  This means that in theory a small group of wealthy Bush supporters could pay for much of the work of electing him by writing massive checks to the super PAC.

Bush, when he finally does declare, would begin a White House bid with confidence that he will have the money behind him to make a deep run into the primaries. Even if Bush should stumble early on, spooking small-dollar donors and starving his own campaign of money, he would still have the means to carry on.  It is perceived that the ability of the super PAC to legally raise unlimited amounts of money far outweighs its primary disadvantage, that of not being able to legally coordinate its actions with Bush or his would-be campaign staff.

On the whole, conservatives aren’t happy with the broken campaign promises of those they elect to office, such as now exists in the 114th United States Congress where Republican Party members are failing to live up to their campaign promises.  Few would dispute that our vote for president stands above all others in importance.  This is especially true in 2016 given the precarious state of this nation and its descent into financial insolvency and moral bankruptcy.

Does Jeb Bush have what it takes to turn this nation around as a conservative reformer?  It’s going to be extremely difficult to convince many American, other than establishment Republicans who want to win at any cost, that Bush’s views on Amnesty, Common Core, and Climate Change are not Democrat-lite in their scope.

Part Two will explore Jeb Bush’s positions on  Amnesty, Common Core, and Climate Change, as expressed by Bush himself, in his still unannounced campaign.