Common Core Today – Back to the Future

Dr. James Avington Miller Jr.  and The War Report on Public Education radio show begin a series exposing the dangers of the Common Core. Joining us for this series is Dr. Deborah Duncan Owens. Here is a short taste of what is in store for our listeners:

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Are you angry enough yet? How long will the American public tolerate the steady encroachment of corporations into public education? In the first of a series of shows dedicated to the Common Core and the corporate takeover of our public schools, Deborah Duncan Owens will discuss the decades long assault against public education in the United States and the origins of the Common Core State Standards. Our students are over tested, exploited for profit, and victims of spying by corporate and governmental entities. It’s time to say no to the free market ideology driving our education policies in the U.S. and reclaim the sacred ground of public education as an essential democratic institution.


There is a price on the head of every child in America! When did greed become the underlying motive in efforts to systemically reform public education in America? How can we reclaim our public schools and say no to the corporate takeover of education? Deborah Duncan Owens pulls back the curtain that has shrouded the American public from the collusion of the political right and left with corporate America that has been plotting a course to privatize our nation’s public school system.


Join us in a conversation about taking back the sacred ground of public education in America. It’s time to set up a war room and establish a unified plan to end the incursion of corporate America into the lives of our nation’s most precious resource, our children. America’s most vulnerable citizens, those who have no vote or seat at the policy table, are depending on us to put an end to the CCSS debacle, Draconian high stakes testing, and Orwellian student data collecting. United we stand and divided we will fall. It’s time to unite our voices — for the sake of our children and their public schools in America.

Knowledge is power — and the knowledge gained through this series will arm pro-public school advocates with an essential understanding to finally come to grips with the forces that have historically sought to dismantle America’s public school system. Parents and teachers, armed with knowledge about the historical roots of the corporate assault on education, can — through collective action — take back our locally controlled public schools and hold our elected and non-elected governmental policy makers accountable. When parents and students OPT OUT of Draconian high stakes tests that line the pockets of corporate reformers while exploiting the personal information of children, parents and students are OPTING IN to a coalition of Americans intent on preserving our democratic system of public education!

So join us this Sunday, March 29th, as we begin our series on the Common Core Today – Back to the Future.
Click on the website below to listen live and join the discussion:
http://bbsradio.com/thewarreport
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Pearson is Peeking at Student Data : Bob Braun and Dr. Miller expose Pearson as Peeping Tom

Podcast the Sunday after Bob Braun broke the Pearson Scandal:

Part 1 here:

http://bbsradio.com/content/war-report-public-education-march-15-2015
Podcast from this Sunday’s show – March 22- on Pearson and SpyGate Part 2-

Host Dr. James Avington Miller Jr. Special Guests: Bob Braun’s LedgerKen PrevitiLeonie Haimson and Deborah Duncan Owens

http://bbsradio.com/…/war-report-public-education-march-22-…

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Flaws at the Heart of Current Education Reforms

Thank you Chris from your thoughtful letter and blog post mentioning the War Report and Dr. Miller. #2015TheYearoftheStudent #solidarity

Creative by Nature

“Teaching is an art form rooted in the wise and careful use of educational research and assessment tools. When government policy makers continue to implement evaluation methods and tools criticized by education professionals they are embarking on a very dangerous nation-wide experiment. Focusing their attention on data collection and high-stakes testing creates the illusion of knowledge and control. It allows people who lack understanding to assert that they have it, when in fact what they are actually putting in place is more like a marketing strategy designed to intentionally bypass the truth. They are misusing scientific measures, ignoring what is actually most important and meaningful, measuring what is not easily quantifiable with numbers…” ~Christopher Chase

charter3The following is a Letter to the Editor which I wrote that was published today (March 11, 205) in Our Town, a local newspaper in Rockland County, New York.

There’s a scene in the film Dead…

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When children are informed about why their parents are opting them out of high stake tests

Poetic Justice

Here is a repost with permission from Lourdes Perez Ramirez a new friend and the founder and CEO of HispanEduca – a wonderful non-profit organization “empowering Hispanics/Latinos with access to education policy and reform so they (we) can impact and shape it!”

He followed every single instruction he had been given to refuse his computer-based tests scheduled for today.

He clicked SUBMIT without having answered a single test item. He raised his hand, very politely, and his teacher knew the student had finished before his classmates because he and his mom had decided to refuse.

His wonderful, Hispanic mom, who has two jobs every single day of the week, could not pick him up and keep him away from school for more than an hour, and then come back for the rest of the school day. Missing a few hours of her job would be the difference between paying the…

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NAISON RANTS: My Memories of the Selma Protests – Written for BK Nation

Here is a piece written by Notorious PhD – Dr. Mark Naison:

It was the spring of 1965. I was a junior at Columbia,  preparing for the tennis season, where I had the opportunity to play number 1 singles. But as exciting as that prospect was, because i was an activist as much as an athlete, I was deeply concerned about two high profile political issues- the bombing of North Vietnam and the failure of President Johnson to move aggressively to secure voting rights for African Americans in Southern States. I found myself wondering- would the emerging conflict in Vietnam distract the President from undertaking the most important remaining civil rights initiative still left- making sure that every American, including Blacks living in the Deep South states, could go to the polls and vote their conscience without risking their lives?

Apparently, Dr. Martin Luther King had the same concerns, because he launched a high profile, high risk effort to force President Johnson to act on voting rights. His target city was Selma Alabama, where he knew that the local sheriff, Jim Clark would use the same brutal tactics against non violent protesters that Bull Connor did in Birmingham, and so doing create a set of embarrassing images, broadcast around the world, that would force the president to act.  But to do this, King had to persuade a large number of people to take the same kind of risk of beatings, and jailings and shootings and bombings that demonstrators in Birmingham faced, at a time when more and more Black people were getting fed up with non violence and were ready to fight back. This time, fearing that he might not get enough protesters from Selma alone, he encouraged protesters from all over the country to descend on Selma, including white labor activists, and Black and white clergy.

King’s strategy turned Selma into a tinderbox, an embittered outpost of the Old South which saw itself invaded by an occupying army. The resentment was directed at white supporters from outside the city as much as local Black demonstrators and the rage spilled over not only into fierce attacks on protesters, marked by clubs and tear gas, but the murder of two white activists who came to support the protests, Rev James Reeb and Viola Liuzzo.

King’s strategy ultimately worked, as he entered into high wire negotiations with both the President and local officials which produced a peaceful march to from Selma to Montgomery. But the violence and brutality against the protests was the thing that ultimately turned the tide, forcing the President into a dramatic step he had never anticipated- putting a Voting Rights Act before Congress that would send federal registrars into the South wherever there was evidence of discrimination at the polls. What forced him to take this step, ironically,  may have been the very Cold War logic that led the President to launch military action in Vietnam, forcing him to realize that what King had created through this protest gave the Communist enemy so much ammunition that the nation had to act to secure its global position and keep credibility with developing nations.

In any case, King’s gamble led to Black Southerners gaining the untrammeled right to vote for the first time since Reconstruction. But it also left a legacy of bitterness at white brutality, and presidential cynicism, that further eroded the African American communities already weakening commitment to non-violence.

Help! Leader of United Opt Out Under Attack in Colorado

War Report has your back Peggy. Whatever you need. We are here. # Solidarity.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Peggy Robertson, the leader of United Opt Out, is under attack. In this article in the “Denver Post,” administrators warn that she might lose her job if she doesn’t give the test. Even union leaders express ambivalence about supporting her.

Peg has Ben a hero of the Opt Out movement. She has been fearless and outspoken. She belongs on the honor roll of the blog as one of the indispensable voices who support children.

Please write letters and tweets to the Denver Post and tweet your support for Peg.

The Denver Post is @denverpost

Peggy Robertson is @pegwithpen

United Opt Out is @UnitedOptOut

Stand with Peggy and UnitedOpt Out!

#IsupportPeggyandOptOut

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The Other PARCC: A Short Film by Michael Elliot

Michael Elliott, parent, activist, film editor, brings it all home here in his latests short doc about the PARCC exam. Thank you Michael, for standing up for not only your own children, but ALL children in the War on Public Education. Thank you for producing these grassroots films- with no financial support from any organization at all- to raise awareness about the PARCC exam and other abuses that are inflicted on our children by the testing regime.

parentingthecore

Back in January, I was asked to be one of many interviewees for Michael Elliot’s short film (5 minutes) about New Jersey’s test refusal movement, which kicked into high gear this January as the state began gearing up for the PARCC tests (which begin tomorrow here in Montclair). The film was released today. If I was more technologically savvy, I’d embed it here, but just click on the link — and please watch it — it it definitely worth seeing.

Michael shot over 25 hours of video for the final 5 minute product. He did a great job editing together a wide range of voices united around a common theme. This afternoon, Montclair Cares About Schools hosted a premiere event for the film with Michael. I attended along with my family and many of the other people whose voices contributed to the film. We had a full house despite…

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