Missouri Coalition Against Common Core

Working to regain local control of education in Missouri.

Refuse the Test

Carol Burris, the outspoken principal from New York who has seen the light on common core said, "Testing is the rock on which the policies that are destroying our local public schools are built. If our politicians do not have the courage to reverse high-stakes testing, then those who care must step in." That means parents who do not feel that eight to ten hours of testing is appropriate for their 9 year old need to stand up and say Enough!.

Our Notice of Refusal can be downloaded HERE  for you tpo sign and hand to your principal. Principals who recognize a parents right to direct the education of their child should honor this statement. Be sure to check out our Assessments tab for information on which districts have parents refusing to allow their children to waste their time taking a test with no external validity, that will not count for district accreditation or teacher evaluation and that was developed by a group recently rule illegal by a Missouri judge. Parents - Stand up for your children!
Help us to understand how many are standing up to refuse the SBAC test. Click on the box to the left to fill out a short survey.

Judge Grants Summary Judgement in SBAC Lawsuit

Columbia MO, February 24, 2015

Judge Green of the Circuit Court of Cole County has just granted summary judgment in favor of the plaintiffs (Fred Sauer, Gretchen Logue, Anne Gassel) on our claim that Missouri’s membership fees to Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortia are unlawful under the Compact Clause of the U.S. Constitution as well as “state and federal law.”

Judge Green has permanently enjoined the State of Missouri from making payments in the form of membership fees to Smarter Balanced. We can no longer be a member of SBAC.

We expect the state to appeal this decision which attorney John Sauer looks forward to defending.

We encourage other states to bring similar suit to end the Smarter Balanced Consortia.

Here is the judgement. http://www.moagainstcommoncore.com/Sauer%20v.%20Nixon%20-%20Judgment.pdf

Plans For ESEA Re-Authorization Are Awash in DC Doublespeak

Those nice newly elected folks in DC want to help us out by re-authorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) whose last authorization is more commonly known as No Child Left Behind. They didn't get it right in 2002 and it looks like they are back to do it again in 2015. Both the House and Senate bills have language that would legislate Common Core, grant states local control but only with USDoED approval, make all school medical records Health Records and therefore not subject to HIPPA protection and grant the Secretary of Ed waiver authority which means none of what they are writing matters.

Please download our two page flier on this issue and share it with friends and family. Then call your representatives in Washington and tell them we don't want what they are offering in ESEA. Get DC out of education!

Refuse Buttons Now Available.

Please send an email with your name, address and number of buttons you want to NoMOCommonCore@gmail.com

Subject:STD Button

To help control our out-of-pocket costs we ask for a minimum donation of $1.50 per button to cover the item + S&H.

Governor Nixon Signs HB1490

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.

HB1490 Work Group Information

You can find out what the work groups are up to on the DESE website.

There you can find Work Group member lists, meeting locations, dates and times, as well as dates and locations for the public hearings that the State Board of Education is required to hold.

You can also find links to videos from the initial meetings of the work groups on DESE's youtube page here.
To better understand the main elements of this law, download our pamphlet "Common Core and Missouri - Where are we now?"

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.

Universal Preschool Tied To Common Core

Read more about the universal FAIL of preschool to produce lasting improvement of student performance. Studies now showing that making preschoolers sit in a class structured for older students is actually harmful to their psycho-social development. See our new Early Childhood Education Tab

The Latest News

Issues and Recommendations for a Resolution of the General Assembly Regarding Validity and Reliability of the Smarter Balanced Assessments Scheduled for Missouri

The following are excerpts from a report submitted to the House Education Appropriations Committee on 3-4-15 by Dr. Mary Byrne. The full report with citations and attachments can be downloaded here.

Tests that are valid and reliable are the only legally defensible tests that can be incorporated into any evaluation plan of students, teachers, and districts. Missouri’s State Board of Education and Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) are responsible for ensuring that statewide assessments administered in Missouri are valid and reliable, yet, they committed Missouri as a governing member of the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) in April 2010,  before the test was developed, and even before the project manager for developing the pioneering assessment system was named..  In October 2013, DESE contracted with McGraw-Hill to administer tests aligned to the Common Core State Standards  despite restrictions “. . . that no funds shall be used to implement the Common Core Standards” as per HB 002 Section 2.050. McGraw-Hill has also contracted with SBAC to produce the SBAC test items.  The SBAC summative assessments dates are Mar. 30-May 22, 2015. According to DESE staff, student assessments will be scored, but not used in teacher evaluation or district accreditation. An SBAC memo dated September 12, 2014 indicates evidence of adequate validity and reliability is not available to support administration of the SBAC in spring 2015 and interpretation of scores.
A review of formal and informal resources available to the public and cited throughout this paper suggests:

1. Missouri agents of SBAC agreement did not exercise due diligence before committing Missouri to the development and administration of the SBAC
2. Report of validity and reliability to legislative leadership does not inform that evidence of SBAC external validity and reliability is lacking
3. Publicly available formal and informal SBAC publications do not include evidence of reliability and validity 
4. External reviews of SBAC: “work in progress”/ “bizarre”/vulnerable to hacking 
5. Performance Test Items are in SBAC Assessments, but restricted in HB 1490;
6. DESE flouted spending restrictions of HB 002 to administer SBAC in 2015
7. Judge Daniel Green, Circuit Court of Cole County, MO ruled SBAC is an illegal state compact on February 24, 2015
8. U.S. Department of Education (DoE) Funding of SBAC violates the intent of federal laws and
9. Purpose of SBAC inconsistent with purpose of public education in Missouri.

The following recommendations for a resolution to reverse and investigate decisions made by the commissioner of education and state board of education are made on the grounds that, they did not exercise due diligence in the adoption of membership in SBAC prior to reviewing evidence of assessment validity and reliability and on their insistence on continuing its administration, without assurances of its technical adequacy:

(1) Legislative leadership should, within the number of legislative days allowed by HB 1490, support a resolution in both the House of Representatives and the Senate to stop
implementation of SBAC assessments in Missouri and withdraw Missouri from SBAC as per Missouri’s original memorandum of understanding for the purpose of developing assessments fully under the control of Missouri;
(2) The resolution should request an independent review of all SBAC test items for technical adequacy  and all test items of the ACT that will be used to determine “college readiness” in grade 11 by a testing expert having experience in development and evaluation of nationally used, standardized tests and is not associated with the SBAC or PARCC consortia ACT, state or federal departments of education, or testing companies that contract with any of the aforementioned entities, for the purpose of detecting fraud;
(3) The resolution should request a thorough investigation of appropriate uses of statewide standardized tests in Missouri (for example, whether student growth models relying on standardized test results, as required by the U.S. DoE’s No Child Left Behind Waiver Renewal application) for the purpose of challenging the conditions of the ESEA waiver offered by the U.S. DoE;
(4) The resolution should request an immediate audit of DESE and State Board of Education for the purpose of determining the legality of continued administration of SBAC in Missouri schools for purposes stated in Missouri’s original ESEA waiver application and prospective renewal application.

2015 Missouri Legislative Session Opens with Promise of Equal Opportunity

By - Anne Gassel

The new Speaker, Representative John Diehl (R-89) opened the 2015 session with a speech calling for unity and trust.

"By far most bills that pass this House receive a substantial, bipartisan majority. They don’t involve Republican issues, strictly speaking, or Democratic issues. Often they just come down to the basics of good government – constitutional functions and practical, attentive service to the diverse districts that we represent. When those fundamentals are the focus, we can hardly go wrong. "

That is a welcome statement to those of us who want local control of education. We want government that follows its constitutional constraints and allows diverse school districts to choose the type and scope of service they want and can afford to provide.

Diehl had this to say about education.

“Together, we will challenge our educational institutions to put students first and to graduate students at all levels who are ready to compete in a 21st century economy. And together, we will work to ensure the doors of opportunity are open to everyone who wants to, and is willing to, put in the hard work and sacrifice necessary to succeed.


As this state moves forward, we want everyone to feel empowered to achieve their dreams - no matter their age, their region, or their race. We want everyone to have their chance at a quality functional education, their opportunity to get ahead, their equal opportunity to participate in the economy of our state”


I applaud his focus on opportunity instead of outcome and his recognition that it be there for those who are willing to work for it. We have, for too long, functioned under an education policy that promises a specific outcome, even if students don't work for it. More and more blame is shifted to the teacher and, in a perverse twist, more parents are forced out of the equation as schools try to control all influences on the child's education because they feel 100% responsible for it. This policy leads to more and more spending on education as we attempt to force children to learn at a standardized pace in a standardized way.

This next session our legislative efforts will focus on removing the expensive and unnecessary SBAC tests, student data privacy measures and the restoration of parental rights to direct their child's education. These seem to be in line with the Speaker's thoughts on education so it will be interesting to see if he remains true to his statements yesterday.

You can read Diehl's entire speech here.

Published January 8, 2015

Common Core Part of an Old Plan

Linda Murphy is an Oklahoma educator and former appointed Secretary of Education and Deputy Commissioner of Labor for Workforce Education and Training.  She wrote in the Okie Blaze about her experience in 1995 she was sent to the National Governors Association meeting in Chicago, by then Oklahoma Governor Keating, where the NGA staff and Marc Tucker met with Education Advisors from many states. 

At that meeting they discussed President Clinton's education plans which were being promoted by business leaders like Lou Gerstner former IBM CEO who later went on to become Chairman Emirtus of Achieve Inc. which wrote the Common Core Standards.

Now her state supports Common Core and the vision of a “human capital pipeline” through education and training nationwide that it enables.

"This is all too familiar to those of us who became informed in the 1990’s," she wrote. "Some leaders remain:  Gerstner, Cohen and long range master planner, Marc Tucker.  Since 1988 Tucker has been Executive Director of the National Center for Education and the Economy, NCEE, funded by the Carnegie Foundation.


Michael Cohen, Executive Director of ACHIEVE, was chosen by Clinton for leadership in the Department of Education.  Cohen was on staff with Clinton, while he was Governor and chairman of the National Governor’s Association."


At that time Murphy and the education advisors from Virginia and New Hampshire were very vocal about their opposition to this vision.


"I just said NO.  No, the state of Oklahoma will NOT be participating in this plan," she said.


In her 2013 article she wrote about where the plans are now.

  1. Common Core State Standards written by ACHIEVE’s national panel
  2. Curriculum aligned with standards
  3. Student Assessments/Testing aligned with standards and curriculum (assessments include student behavior, attitudes, values and beliefs)
  4. Teachers trained as facilitators of aligned curriculum loosing freedom to teach by direct instruction and design their own lesson plans
  5. Teachers evaluated by monitors who report to the State Longitudinal Data System -SLDS for “Quality and Accountability”
  6. School Districts’ grades reported to the SLDS and the public based on “over simplified” and unproven processes
  7. Student data collected and stored in State Longitudinal Data Systems -SLDS for use across government agencies or outside parties developing tests and curriculum;  P-20 Councils oversee student tracking from Preschool through Age 20;  Individual and group data from schools, government agencies and workforce organizations matched and used in planning; Grades, behavior, nicknames, extracurricular activity, address and religious identity designated as useful data

It is now 2015, two decades since this plan was launched. Back in the 90's there was no social media and no grassroots activism of any serious note. The creators did not envision any public back lash and they had the support of business giants like IBM. They actually expected the public to lap it up. The government was going to make our kids college and career ready. What's not to like? They certainly didn't anticipate any kind of coordinated public push back. Their blind spot was their inability to predict the public's rejection of any plan that was based on authoritarian central control. They didn't plan on the tiger moms, the constitutional resurgency and frankly the high level of awareness of so many parents about what goes on in school. Turns out there is plenty not to like.


You can read Murphy's full article here.

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"

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Get the daily education news on our blog MissouriEducationWatchdog.com
Contact Us:
Anne Gassel

Gretchen Logue


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 back to back. Stack the pages and fold in half.

MCACC Calendar

Monday, Mar 30 at 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Wednesday, Apr 8 at 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
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.
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States the have rejected 

Common Core 2015

For more details on other pending legislation to drop Common Core standards click Here.

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.