Core Education

MORE OPTING OUT OF COMMON CORE

Mr. V.K. shared this article, and with the growing focus on Common Core and its real rotten heart, its individually-adaptive computerized standardized tests and the further corporatization it brings, more and more people are opting out, and the revolt is growing to states as well:

Common Core Opt-Out Movement Growing

You'll note something here that I and my co-author Gary Lawrence think is a bit of misdirection, and we so argue in our forthcoming (hopefully, soon to be forthcoming) book, Rotten to the (Common) Core. This misdirection can be highlighted by the following quotations from the article:

When the opt-out movement first gained traction in 2014, it was initially dismissed by some educational policymakers as a movement primarily taken up by middle-class white families concerned that new standardized tests would reveal their children to be lower-achieving than once thought. Data from New York, for example, suggests that those opting out tended to come from more affluent areas and are more likely to be white.

However, data from Ohio have shown a much more inclusive movement, representative of the state population. Early evidence from 2016 suggests that the movement has been gaining momentum in communities of color – the Seattle chapter of the NAACP issued a statement in support of opting out, and principals in New York City have publicly voiced support for giving parents the right to opt out.

...

But when state legislators refuse to act, individual action can also be an effective strategy. Massive opt-outs create a path forward parents wanting to eliminate Common Core standards and put education back into the hands of state and local bodies where it belongs. Ultimately, if enough students opt out of the testing, it could collapse the Common Core system altogether.

 It's that last paragraph in particular that is the focus of our concern, for if one parses it closely, what the major concern is, is precisely the "Common Core standards"(as indicated by the phrase "...to eliminate Common Core standards") which can be achieved by "enough students (opting) out of the testing."
In other words, to collapse the standards, revolt against the testing. The standards are the primary concern, and the tests only secondary, and a means to an end.
In our thinking, however, it should be the reverse: the individually-adaptive computerized standardized tests are the heart of Common Core, and for a variety of reasons we get into in the book, but the bottom line is: these tests will measure exactly nothing, put the corporatization of education on steroids, and hand a vast amount of power to the testing corporations, not only to provide the tests, but the materials to prepare for them. This, in effect, hands the content of curriculum over to the corporations, and takes it away from parents, local teachers, and school boards. And there are many other problems here too, not the least of which is the notion of a standardized test which does not allow a student to generate and argue there answers, which is now made "individually adaptive" by committees of anonymous experts programming the tests. In effect, if you had concerns about these abominable standardized tests before, you're now facing a double and triple whammy.
It's the tests themselves that are the primary issue, and fault, of common core, and with them, the whole underlying philosophy of a "standardized" "objective" "scientific" computerized test. These are, to be blunt, not tests of intelligence, of academic achievement, of reasoning or critical thinking ability, of synthetic reasoning ability, or anything even remotely close to a fair assessment of achievement. There are, however, perfect tests of one thing, and one thing only:
Of the individual's willingness to be passive, and to select from pre-selected answers.
Or to be even more blunt: they are obedience and conformity tests.
And as we argue in the book, it certainly seems as if that was the real objective all along.
See you on the flip side...

9 thoughts on “MORE OPTING OUT OF COMMON CORE”

  1. I thought readers might like to know what the great Burt Rutan has to say about education:

    “Aviation Week & Space Technology” May 9-22, 2016 p.40-41

    Burt Rutan on “Cultivating Innovation”

    My addiction to “Aviation Week” began over 50 years ago. During my seven years of military flight-testing at Edwards AFB, California, the magazine was our best source of aerospace information. We pored through every issue and kept them for reference. Chief Editor Robert. Hotz not only reported the raw aerospace facts, his editorials were the warfighter’s political grist. I recall shouting “Hotz for president” while reading his editorial during the 1968 campaign.

    On the 100th anniversary of the Wright brothers’ flight, “Aviation Week” asked me for comments. I identified nine individuals I thought were most responsible for the progress of the first 100 years of flight. I later discovered that all had been young children during that incredible four-year period starting in 1908 when Wilbur Wright flew his airplane in Paris. By 1912, aircraft were being flown in 39 countries, and factories in Europe were building more than 500 aircraft per year!

    When children at the age of 4-16 observe extreme progress, as adults they tend to exercise the “three Cs” – Curiosity, Creativity, and Courage. This questing spirit drives the technical breakthroughs so important to human progress.

    Why the worldwide surge in airplane development in just four years? Clearly mankind has been curious all along, but it was the courage to try that energized the world’s creative minds. Think: “Hey, if bicycle shop guys can do it, I can, too.”

    Further evidence: Almost all the billionaires that now provide our breakthroughs in commercial space were 4-16-year-old observers, living in the incredible 1960s when – in only nine years – the world developed nine different rocket launch systems that flew humans to space. Subsequently, only three new human launch systems were flown in the next 46 years. Is it possible that this lack of progress is because there has not been a surge of exciting new capabilities to motivate young people?

    Four Observations:
    1. Successful innovators aggressively practice the “three Cs” because, as children, they concluded that impossible achievements are not just possible, but expected.
    2. Advances in technology do not happen at a linear rate. Short segments of phenomenal progress are scattered among decades of boredom.
    3. Innovators can achieve far more than what most people believe can be done.
    4. Most technical breakthroughs happen because individuals work to achieve personal goals, not, because governments provide funding.

    With this in mind, what are the most important technologies aerospace should pursue? What are the most promising technologies that might be overlooked?

    Research, as opposed to development, requires a goal most people see as impossible. You cannot encourage progress on research breakthroughs that are yet to be discovered. Could we have encouraged the invention of today’s Internet in 1980?

    But we must try.

    We should aggressively work to discover if we are the only intelligent species in the universe. Everyone has this curiosity (the first “C”). I would love to see innovators attack the question with the other two “Cs.” I believe that my lifetime has included the most interesting period of human history. However, if I miss our discovery of ET, or whatever the extraterrestrials will call themselves, then my belief will definitely be wrong.

    I agree with my friend Elon Musk that locating our species on more than just Earth may be our most important engineering challenge. Also, protecting our planet, and our species from history’s only real significant threat (asteroid/comet impact) should not be overlooked. Aerospace researchers should have a critical role in developing technologies needed to achieve both those goals.

    Education is our most overlooked technical problem. Our current standardized, regulated classroom environment is a failure. After the Apollo Moon landings, America was first in awarding advanced degrees in math/engineering sciences to its citizens. Now we don’t even show up on the first page. We must strive to nurture in our children the Curiosity, Creativity and Courage that took us to the Moon, restoring the sense of our exceptionalness. The big public education experiment has failed America and cannot be fixed by mere money. We need to apply the three “Cs” to the problem with a clear goal of regaining our No. 1 status. This effort requires the best talent within the aerospace industry. Reaching this goal might save the world.

    Those who defend the current educational system will ask what the new breakthroughs will look like. We don’t know. We didn’t know what the Internet, GPS, and DNA looked like before they were recognized as breakthroughs. But that shouldn’t deter us.

    Any important breakthrough, before it happens, is often dismissed as nonsense. Those who find the breakthroughs need to have confidence in nonsense. Successful innovators tend to look more like idiots than the sensible, straight-A students who spend their careers being careful to never fail. The “sensible” do not recognize the importance of the third “C.”

    “Scaled Composites” founder Burt Rutan led the team who created the first privately built spacecraft to send humans into space – “SpaceShipOne” – that then repeated the achievement within five days, a feat that captured the Ansari X Prize in 2004. For Rutan, the milestone followed decades of innovations in aerospace.

    1. Agree with some of your analyses. Especially keen on your three c’s. How yo got away with so many quotes without bot interference is a good sign.
      But your stress on individual versus group; or implying that government funding is not a very major factor in industry innovation, like the computer industry is bogus.
      Your reference to those heroic billionaires, reaching for the stars, isn’t at all believable from my frame of reference.
      I used to read that same magazine at times, as my father was an avid reader/subscriber.

    2. Goshawks, my somewhat critical reply to your post, was deep sixed.
      I had a suspicion as it would be, as I questioned some elitist dogma’s, that quite frankly, look to be a source for those deep six information three-day holding-patterns.

  2. Do the names involved in creating the USA’s so-called Common Core also pop up in other social engineering or eugenicist efforts? It seems to me there would be cross-correlation among individuals, universities, and think tanks who are part of what I once called the Rockefeller-Rothschild livestock show and rodeo.

    I am looking forward to reading Dr. Farrell’s book even though this subject appears to be an unique problem of the USA.

    I recall being told often that such nefarious plans are first brought forward in New Zealand, then roll on through California… or they begin in Sweden and spring forth upon other unsuspecting nations and peoples from their “clear success” in Scandinavia. There was an US American woman I once met named Charlotte Iserbyt who I think it was put me onto this idea.

  3. I hope sales of “Rotten To The (Common) Core” take off like a scalded saucer and that many, many new, interested and curious people discover the other books and the Giza website thereby.

    I’ll be ordering my copy on Father’s Day.

  4. Since our oligarchs fear thought-thinking they want biped domestic livestock. The real problem is their mental capacity itself they seem to want to live as pod people ala the Invasion Of The Body Snatchers world. Money and making money is all that they dream of and playing some grade Z version of the gods. Dumb livestock and making them and keeping them dumb has no future either they either reverse this course or they and their societies have no future only a DEAD END.

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