Missouri Coalition Against Common Core

Working to regain local control of education in Missouri.

Governor Nixon Signs HB1490

School Board Resolutions

The Missouri Coalition Against Common Core is proud to announce that Governor Jay Nixon signed House Bill1490 into law on July 14, 2014. We appreciate the work of the Missouri Legislature and the Governor in this first step which enables Missourians to direct and develop education for Missouri students. We believe this is an important first step forward that applies the appropriate caution when implementing a new and untried standards system. This new law will provide a measure of  protection for our teachers, districts and students from consequences for student test scores on a standardized test whose validity and reliability as a tool for measuring their performance is not supported by data.


We look forward to working with the Governor and the Legislature in the next session to further education excellence for Missouri students.

Take a look at a proposed resolution for your school board on the upcoming

 Amendment 3

The AP U.S. History (APUSH) course has been changed by David Coleman (Common Core Architect). Find out why your district should should pass a resolution to send to the College Board and our state board of education requesting a delay of implementation of the new APUSH.
To better understand the main elements of this law, download our pamphlet "Common Core and Missouri - Where are we now?"

Missouri Passes HB1490 To Reclaim State Control of Education Standards

JEFFERSON CITY, MO - With strong support in both the House and Senate, the Missouri legislature passed HB1490 whose main purpose is to define a system wherein state education experts will evaluate and  recommend state K-12 education standards. HB1490 passed the House 131:12 and the Senate 23:6. While not going nearly as far in returning local control of education as members of the Missouri Coalition Against Common Core had hoped, the bill is a good first step towards reclaiming state sovereignty over education.


"We would have liked the language to be a lot stronger in terms of rejecting the Common Core State Standards. We will have to rely on the professional integrity of those selected to be on the various work groups to really focus on what is best for our students and teachers and not be swayed by outside political or financial interests," said Anne Gassel a co-founder of MCACC. The coalition is a grassroots group made up of mothers and fathers, grandparents, teachers and school board members who are working together to restore local control of education.


HB1490, sponsored by Representative Kurt Bahr of St. Charles county, originally called for just the immediate cessation of implementation of Common Core State Standards. Several amendments were added by the House to address the practical issues of what would happen to districts while the state was working on new standards. “It was a team effort between grassroots supporters and our counterparts in the Senate. I am happy to have gotten a bill that will force an open and transparent process involving all of Missouri in the education of our children,” said Bahr.

 

The bill contains a one year moratorium on actions that could be taken based on student test scores on the statewide standardized tests aligned to the CCSS. Teacher evaluations cannot be affected by these scores, nor can they negatively impact district accreditation. The Missouri School Improvement Plan (MSIP5) which the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education imposed three years ago in a process that was far less consultative with local administrators than it had ever been in the past, required student test scores be used for both accreditation and teacher evaluation.


Senator Ed Emery (District 31)  carried the bill in the Senate which added additional measures including the protection of student data. The bill which passed out of the Senate differed enough from the House bill to require a conference committee to work out the differences. The committee also sought input from the Governor's office to make the bill less vulnerable to a veto.


In February 2009, Governor Jay Nixon told C-SPAN, "Education... is primarily a state responsibility, no doubt about it." He stated that Missouri had an "outstanding" public education system. During 2008 a visit by then US Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings, she had this to say about Missouri's standards, "Massachusetts gets a lot of air time about their high standards, but it’s a little known fact that Missouri's are right up there and very, very strong." Yet just four months later Governor Nixon committed the state to adopting the, then as yet unwritten, CCSS in exchange for $1.7 billion in State Fiscal Stabilization Funds.


"The essence of HB1490 is an affirmation of the Governor's February statement about local control of education and we hope that he continues to support his publicly stated position by signing this bill," said Gassel.


This bill could provide a conflict of interest for the Governor as he sits on the Board of Directors of Achieve Inc., who was instrumental in the development of the CCSS and actually had several seats at the drafting table. Achieve Inc. is also the developer of the Next Generation Science Standards which Missouri is poised to adopt and implement.


The standards are part of a larger package of education reform measures referred to as the Four Assurances that Governor's had to sign on to in order to receive the SFSF. Those assurances included adoption of college and career ready standards and aligned assessments, student data tracking from pre-K through college, teacher evaluation programs that included metrics laid out by the US Department of Education and turn around models for failing school districts.  Those same assurances were included in the state waiver applications for No Child Left Behind.


Members of MCACC recognized the unprecedented control those four assurances gave the USDoEd over education in Missouri. Combined on all the bills calling for the repeal of common core this session, more than 4,000 witness statements in support were turned in by the public, an unprecedented number. In their testimony on the common core bills working their way through the legislature this session, MCACC witnesses noted that the state has signed on to use a privately owned, copyrighted product that we had virtually no role in developing and which has no process for us to affect any improvements or changes that the state needs. "Yet our school districts will spend millions implementing this product. This is taxation without representation," said Mary Byrne, one of the founders of MCACC and an active speaker around the state on Common Core.


That desire for federal control has become more apparent as states that have rejected various elements of the assurances, like Indiana which rejected the CCSS and Washington which rejected the specific test the Department wanted for teacher evaluations, even though Washington's teacher evaluation program, established long before the USDoEd requirements, included a provision to tie student test scores to teacher evaluations, have found themselves potential targets for retaliation by the USDoEd.

"It's not about what is best for the students, its about making sure that states follow the Department's instructions to the letter," said Gretchen Logue another founder of the Missouri Coalition Against Common Core and editor of MissouriEducationWatchdog.com. “Those states are being punished for Congress’s failure to act to fix or repeal No Child Left Behind.”


Many teachers have quietly complained about the standards, but refused to do so publicly for fear of losing their jobs. Two teachers from the Sikeston School district did speak at a Senate hearing on SB798/SB514 (Emery/Lamping) which also addressed common core. "I just could not do this to my students any more without saying something," said Susan Kimball a kindergarten teacher in Sikeston, MO. "My kids are not developmentally ready to do a lot of this work." Her comments are consistent with those in a letter signed by 500 early childhood education experts with The Early Childhood Education Alliance submitted at the time the standards were being drafted which called the standards developmentally inappropriate and in "conflict with compelling new research in cognitive science, neuroscience, child development, and early childhood education about how young children learn, what they need to learn, and how best to teach them in kindergarten and the early grades." There were no early childhood educators on the CCSSI work groups and that letter was ignored by the drafter of the final report from the CCSSI.


A special education teacher in Missouri believes the standards put even more negative stress on her students. "For kids who are already behind in achievement, the more rigorous standards are causing them to give up." She said the increased amount of testing and the mandatory online format for the assessments do a great disservice to special education students who already have attention and focus issues. "It is impossible for them to do well. This is setting them up for failure."


Senator John Lamping sponsored legislation last year requiring the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to provide information on the cost of common core implementation and the data collected on students. He offered this perspective on HB1490. “While this bill is a victory for the grassroots supporters who have worked tirelessly to educate Missourians it is but a first step.  I hope they will continue their efforts to educate Missourians on the very serious concerns that exist with common core and the process by which it was adopted.”


The Governor has until August 28 to act on the bill.

Why We Need To Stop Common Core - Video

The American Principles Project and Concerned Women of America have produced a fabulous video series that describes what Common Core Standards are, how we got them and what we can do to get them out of our state. 

Please watch all five segments and share this link with as many people as you can. 


If you really want to educate yourself about Common Core go to our Resource page and read the Pioneer Institute Report "Controlling Education From The Top"

What's New on MCACC

MCACC Legislative Day

Mary Byrne's presentation "Tensions in American Education" is now posted on our Links page for those who would like to share it.

Our very own video tab

We have added  a  Video tab to include lots of informative videos on common core and student data. Please check there for things like:
  • Governor Nixon telling the national governors association that he has been going around the legislature to change the teacher evaluation system.
  • Commissioner Nicastro admitting that common core is the floor of standards we want our children to master.
  • Professor James Milgram explaining why the CC standards won't make kids college ready.
  • Bill Gates telling the Natl Council of State Legislatures that the big benefit of common core is creating a uniform customer base for businesses.
  • Paul Schwartz warning about the dangers of student data collection.

Please check it out and share it with your friends!

What You Can Do To Help Stop Common Core

  1. Join MCACC by Registering to the right.
  2. Sign the petition and forward the link on to others to sign.
  3. Share the MCACC website with as many people as you can. Encourage them to watch the videos on the Home page. 
  4. Educate yourself by reading the documents on the resources and documents pages and then educate others.
    5. Get your local school board to sign the Resolution Against Common Core.

The Latest Common Core News

Governor Mary Fallin (OK) Signs Anti-Common Core Legislation

June 5, 2014

On Thursday Gov. Mary Fallin signed into law a full repeal of Common Core State Standards in Oklahoma. 


House Bill 3399 returns the state to the standards they had before 2010 when they first adopted Common Core. Governor Fallin was not in office at that time. The state will have two years to develop their own standards.


“The words ‘Common Core’ in Oklahoma are now so divisive that they have become a distraction that interferes with our mission of providing the best education possible for our children. If we are going to improve our standards in the classroom, now is the time to get to work,” said the Governor.

Fallin's signature on this bill is significant since she is currently the Chairwoman of the National Governors Association which, in conjunction with and the Council of Chief State School Officers, sponsored the creation the standards.


Let's see if Governor Nixon will follow suit and stand up for Missouri's sovereignty to set her own direction for education and sign HB1490.

Missouri Legislature Passes Common Core Bill HB1490!

With final votes of 131:12 in the House and 23:6 in the Senate the Missouri legislature took a giant step forward to reclaim local control of education by passing HB1490.

Legislative Status Update

May 15, 2014
UPDATE:  The House Voted HB1490 out 132:12.

Yesterday, the Senate added a couple amendments to the Conference Committee Report which sent the bill back to the Conference Committee and triggered a request to the House to exceed the limits of the bill.

DESE conferred with the Conference Committee on a couple aspects of the SBAC testing requirements next spring to try to help out districts which are working their way back to accreditation. The protections for districts and teachers (not using student scores on the SBAC in 2015) remain in place and have been expanded to any pilot testing that is done and any time MSIP is changed.

The bill was required to sit overnight and today the House should take up the vote on the Senate request to exceed the limits. If approved, it will go back to the Senate for final vote.

MCACC Legislation This Session

The Missouri Coalition Against Common Core is supporting these bills in the 2014 Legislative Session. Please ask your representative and senator to vote to support these bills.


HB 1490 (Bahr) Stops the implementation of Common Core (the link takes you to the text that will be substituted for this bill's text in committee.)

HB      (C. Jones) Stops the implementation of Common Core and gets the state out of SBAC

SB 514  (Lamping) Stops the implementation of Common Core

SB 798 (Emery) Stops the implementation of Common Core

HB 1873 (Guernsey) Student Data Privacy Act

SB 819 (Wallingford) 4th Amendment Protection Act

HJR 74 (Dohrman) State Board of Education Election Referendum

HB1818 (Dohrman) State Board of Education election statutory changes. This act shall be contingent upon the passage of HJR 74.


Representative Dohrman's bill would place a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot that would change the way our state board of education members are selected. Currently they are appointed by the Governor. The people have no voice at the very top of education where all the decisions about education seem to be taking place in this state.

Pearson's Plan to Control Education

Pearson's Plan to Control Education. This wonderful report was presented to the British Columbia Teachers’ Federation in June 2012. It lays out Pearson's plan to infiltrate and dominate education in North America. Key elements to their plan include:

Quality teaching and learning
Pearson is the provider of the set of rubrics used to assess teacher performance in New York and the provider of the model for teacher evaluation used in Tennessee. In 2006, Pearson bought National Evaluation Systems, the leading provider of customized state assessments for teacher certification in the U.S.


The company scaled up its exposure in this market through an agreement with Stanford University to develop a national licensure procedure which assesses pre-service teacher candidates. More than 25 states and 90 teacher preparation programs have signed on to outsource teacher assessment to Pearson-Stanford.


Flexibility and choice
Pearson is the second-largest operator of virtual schools, achieving this position by purchasing leading player, Connections Education, in September 2011, crossing the line from supporting schools to operating them. The Connections Academy division operates online charter schools in 21 states with 40,000 student-customers.


Learning empowered by technology
Pearson leads the student information systems (SIS) industry because of its purchase of Apple Computer’s PowerSchool and Burnaby, B.C.-based Chancery Software, in 2007


Unfortunately with education these days, everything is about money, and Pearson has found deep pockets in American parents who are easily duped into ever higher spend, er, investing in education. Leveraging their vast earnings to purchase other education companies, Pearson is poised to be a monolithic presence in education. 


From the report:

"The company moved decisively into the testing business well before its recent spate of acquisitions. Along with other testing companies, Pearson grew fat feasting on the mandatory testing required under George W. Bush’s No Child Left Behind, and fatter still under Barack Obama’s Race to the Top. Pearson became a leader in testing as it did in so many other education businesses, by purchasing industry leaders. It bought National Computer Systems, the leading provider of test-scoring services, for an astonishing $2.5 billion US, in July 2000.5 Several months later George W. Bush was elected president on an education—read “testing”—platform. Just days after the election, a NCS- Pearson executive displayed a quote from Bush calling for state testing and individual school report cards and announced to a ballroom-full of Wall Street analysts, 'This almost reads like our business plan.' In 2007, perhaps anticipating Barack Obama’s reliance on testing as his major education policy, Pearson purchased Harcourt Assessment, one of the two leading producers of tests administered at the state level and owner of the Stanford Achievement Test (SAT), for $635 million."


The full report is now included on our Documents page. You can also download it here.

Updated map of states taking legislative action against Common Core. Twenty states in process, plus five states who did not adopt CC in the first place puts half the country potentially out of national standards. 


See our updated list on the right side bar of the grassroots groups opposing common core in these and other states.

Sir Michael Barber - The Black Knight of Global Education

Sir Michael Barber is a name you need to get to know and look out for. He is fast becoming the international guru of education reform and is a huge supporter of Common Core Standards. After ruining British education with his "Deliverology" he has begun consulting with education experts around the globe including here in the United States.

Read this great overview of who he is (one of his titles is CEO of Pearson), who he's associated with, and where he wants to go.

Why worry about Barber?  He wants “sustainable reform” which he defines as “irreversible reform” and aims to “make it so it can never go back to how it was before.”

Sign Up For Email Notices
Get the daily education news on our blog MissouriEducationWatchdog.com
Contact Us:
Anne Gassel
636-448-2124

Gretchen Logue
314-378-6568

nomocommoncore@gmail.com

MCACC Brochure

We've updated our brochure! Please print out the new one and share. Find it here, or go to our resources page to find it along with other supporting documents. Print it out. Stack the pages and fold in half.

MCACC Calendar

No upcoming events
Looking to hear more about common core in your area?  Check the calendar for a local presentation. If you know of an event in your area that is not listed, please add it to our calendar so others can attend. (You must be registered and logged in to add an event)
MCACC Tip Line
Do you have an experience with CC in your child's school that you want to share? A crazy assignment? Teacher opposition suppressed? Unhappy or newly struggling student? Bullying Superintendent? These stories have real impact with legislators and let other parents know that their experience is not unique. We will share only with your permission.
You may also use this form to request a speaker at your event.
Thank you for contacting us. We will get back to you as soon as possible
Oops. An error occurred.
Click here to try again.

National Groups Opposing Common Core


American Association of Christian Schools

American Family Association

Americans For Prosperity

American Principles Project

Cato Institute

Concerned Women Of America

Conservative Teachers of America

Eagle Forum

Education Action Group Foundation

Freedom Works

Locke & Smith

Heartland Institute

Heritage Foundation

Home School Legal Defense Association John Locke Foundation

former Attorney General Ed Meese

National Federation of Republican Women

Pacific Research Institute

Public Interest Institute

Public Policy Institute

Sutherland Institute

Washington Policy Center

We The People

9-12 Groups


 

Facebook Pages Opposing Common Core

Sign the Petition Against Common Core
Mobile users click here to sign the petition.

Please note, you may see a screen asking for a donation AFTER you sign the petition. This request is from iPetition which hosts the on-line petition. Money donated there does not support MCACC. It is NOT necessary to donate in order to sign the petition. You may simply close the tab. Your signature is already recorded.

Alphabet Soup

Common Acronyms Used In Education


AYP – Average Yearly Progress

CCSSI – Common Core State Standards Initiative

CCSSO – Council of Chief State School Officers

DESE –Department of Elementary and Secondary Education – MO state level

DoEd – US Department of Education

ELA – English Language Arts

EPIC – Electronic Privacy Information Center

ESEA – Elementary and Secondary Education Act (1965)

LEA – Local Education Agency (school board)

MAP – Missouri Assessment Program

MNEA - MO National Education Association

MOSIS – Missouri Student Information Systems

MSBA – Missouri School Board Association

MSIP- Missouri School Improvement Plan

MSTA – Missouri State Teachers Association

NCLB – No Child Left Behind (2004 revision of ESEA)

Nex Gen Tests – Next Generation computer adaptive tests being developed by SBAC

NGA – National Governors Association

PARCC – Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (like SBAC)

PD – Professional Development (post graduation teacher training arranged by the school district as a term of license retention)

RTTT – Race To The Top (grant program started in 2010 by the DoEd)

SBAC – Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortia (test developer and collection point for student test data)