Missouri Coalition Against Common Core

Working to regain local control of education in Missouri.

US Dept of Education Defies Congress and the Every Student Succeeds Act

It's not like we didn't try to tell our MO members of Congress that the Every Student Succeeds Act was a Pandora's Box. Sen. Lamar Alexander and Rep. John Kline were committed to passing the law before January 2016 when Jeb Bush would be extolling his contributions to education in the presidential debates. The "bipartisan" coterie patted themselves on the back all the way to the Presidential signing of their piece de resistance (not) in December of last year. An unapologetic bill sponsor was in for a big surprise once the regulatory agency got hold of his legislation. Who knew Obama's choice for Secretary of Education (which Alexander ALSO rushed to appoint) would propose unlawful regulations when implementing ESSA?

We the parents did! We tried to tell Congress, but they wouldn't listen to the "little people" who are mere constituents. After all, education lobbyists know so much more than parents. By April 2016 the first hint of disaster appeared in the draft regulations. Comments closed August 1st.  Now bill sponsor Kline has penned a scathing letter to to the USDED.

WASHINGTON, D.C. | August 31, 2016 - Rep. John Kline (R-MN), chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, issued the following statement today regarding the Department of Education's unprecedented and unlawful “supplement, not supplant” regulatory proposal:

The Department of Education is threatening to unilaterally impose a multi-billion dollar regulatory tax on our nation's schools. This punitive policy will unleash havoc on schools and their students at a time when education leaders should be focused on helping children succeed in the classroom. America’s poorest neighborhoods will be hit the hardest as communities are forced to relocate teachers, raise taxes, or both. Any supposed "flexibility" is really a limited set of bad choices dictated by the secretary of education. This is not at all what Congress intended, and those who helped enact this law cannot honestly believe differently.

What the secretary is proposing is unprecedented and unlawful. The only way to make this right is to scrap this convoluted regulatory scheme immediately. Members of Congress came together to pass bipartisan reforms that are designed to help every child receive an excellent education, and we will not allow this administration to undermine these reforms with its own extreme, partisan agenda.

Here is the letter from members of Congress to Secretary King verifying that the intent of Congress was to affirm parental right of assessment opt out for their children.

Secretary King may be proposing unlawful regulations, but language in the law is written in a manner that will allow King to burn up time defending himself, and if Hillary's elected, he'll have the full support of the executive branch when he is ready to move forward.

What to do now? Don't hold your breath and hope Congress does the right thing. Parents must act to protect their children.

Some things you can do: Call your congressional representative what you think (in MO, Jason Smith is the only member of the House to vote against the ESSA). Then, call your state department of education to tell the commissioner that YOU will be taking charge of your child's education, because neither Congress, the U.S. Department of Education, or the State Department of Education knows how to do what's best for children. AND tell the commissioner that until she publishes the validity and reliability data of the Missouri statewide assessments as per the very law Secretary King is violating, your child will be opted out of the assessment, regardless of what your district's superintendent says.

Below is the text of the law requiring state departments of education to post the assessment validity and reliability data below.

‘‘(B) REQUIREMENTS.—The assessments
17 under subparagraph (A) shall—‘‘(iv) be of adequate technical quality [that is valid and reliable]

21 for each purpose required under this Act
22 and consistent with the requirements of
23 this section, the evidence of which shall be
24 made public, including on the website of
25 the State educational agency;

Race To The Top 2.0

“This Act prohibits the Federal Government from funding the development, pilot testing, field testing, implementation, administration, or distribution of any federally sponsored national test in reading, mathematics, or any other subject, unless specifically and explicitly authorized by law… It is the sense of the Congress that States and local education agencies retain the rights and responsibilities of determining educational curriculum, programs of instruction, and assessments for elementary and secondary education.”     — ESSA SEC. 8549A and SEC. 8549B

From StopFedEd

Throughout the U.S. Department of Education’s Innovative Assessment Demonstration Authority proposed regulations we see a pattern extremely similar to that of the 2009 Race To The Top grant, which bribed States into applying for a grant that would require the implementation of one-size-fits-all standards to receive funding. The Department of Education is using these regulations to push a common, national assessment system.

Moreover, the Innovative Assessment Demonstration Authority proposed regulations incentivize States to join a consortium, something Congress and ESSA proponents said would not happen.

The following are specific areas in which the proposed regulations are egregious in their attempts to impose a common, Federal education system, stripping parents and SEAs of what little local control of education remains, and in many ways contradicts and undermines the law in which they are intended to provide guidance...

See the specific violations of the language and intent of ESSA at StopFedEd

The Patience, Privacy, Power, Politics, and Pensions Behind the Every Student Succeeds Act

Senator Lamar Alexander made passage of ESSA his top priority since the 2014 mid-terms. This was to be is legacy to the American people. Find out what really went on in DC to get this Act, which Secretary Duncan crowed contained every policy the Administration has been advocating for for years, passed. We were told it was going to return control of education to the states. However,  Alexander has  admitted that, "ESSA isn't worth the paper it's printed on unless it's implemented right, .... The federal government will take these powers right back." Read Dr. Byrne's whole paper here. [Updated]

New Report Sheds Light on Deficiencies of Common Core’s Math Standards


Student Data Bill SB989 Final Status

SB989, sponsored by Senator Onder, was heard by the Senate education Committee back in March. The committee never held an executive vote on the bill and it went nowhere. Without a sponsor in the House committed to carrying it, the bill was on shaky ground to make headway this year 

Read more on Missouri Education Watchdog

Read MCACC full testimony here.

(Washington, D.C.) – The American Principles Project Foundation has just published a new report, “Common Does Not Equal Excellent.” Focusing on the K-8 Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSS-M), authors Erin Tuttle and J.R. Wilson provide evidence that the CCSS-M’s dictation of an instructional approach blurs the line between standards and curriculum. The standards consequently undermine the professional judgment of teachers, whose task it is to know the varied learning needs and styles of their students. Tuttle and Wilson consequently refute the claim that the Common Core is benign, or “just a set of standards.”

Read more on our Standards Quality page

Why data tracking of students is still important and what parents need to know about how much the system knows or wants to know about your child.

Please visit our Data page for details on who is collecting what, why and how.

Project Veritas Videos Prove Us Right - For Ed Suppliers it IS All About the Money

Project Veritas has released a series of  powerful and troubling videos showing the callous attitudes and base fiscal focus of the education publishing companies when it comes to providing educational support materials for students. It was never a secret that they are in business to make money and changing standards feeds that business model, but the open contempt for the children and academic excellence is startling in this series of videos. 

Joy Pullman has a three part series over at The Federalist providing details of the decline in quality of American textbooks, the corruption that exists in a system designed to grant monopolies to certain companies by placing inordinate textbook selection power in the hands of a few corruptible people.

Please read Part I and Part II  for the full story.

Why should we be concerned about this decline? In Terrance Moore's book, The Story Killers he warns about the low quality research and bias in these books and what it will do to the mindset of future generations.

“Essentially, all of World War II has been reduced to dropping the bomb and consequently, we are led to believe, America’s inhumanity…Do we want the children just now entering school and in the years to come—who may have never met their great-grandparents—to be made ashamed of that Greatest Generation, of America, and of our resolution to remain free?”

The next time your school district is looking to update their curriculum and textbook selection, maybe you should have a special screening of these videos for your school board members.

“I hate kids. I’m in it to sell books. Don’t even kid yourself for a heartbeat.” - Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Account Manager

"And slapping a new name on it, which in my case, I hope they do…Let’s do it…I can sell a s&*t ton of training around whatever you’re calling it.” -  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Account Exec. talking about rebranding Common Core.

"Republicans and conservatives do not like being told what to do by people they disagree with....They want to influence what is being taught and Common Core doesn't put up with that." - former Pearson Executive

Where do the presidential candidates stand
on Common Core?

Grassroots push back on centralized control of education ensconced in Common Core Standards has dealt a major blow to several statewide and presidential candidates who were not expecting education to be such a big issue this election cycle.  Many have stated they oppose Common Core, but their actions don't always support their campaign promises. 

Dr. Susan Berry, who has followed CCSSI for years, made a scorecard for Breitbart News on Republican presidential candidates. Here is the short version of the score sheet.

Bush – F
Carson – B-
Christie – D+
Cruz – A-
Fiorina – C+
Huckabee -- C

Kasich – F
Paul – A-
Rubio – C
Santorum – B
Trump  – B-

Be sure to read her documentation which supports her grades.

On the Democrat side we have this information.

From CommonDreams.org. which examined Bernie Sanders voting history on education:

"On the campaign trail, when asked about his stance on K-12 schools, Sanders has boasted he would end NCLB. That was just accomplished by Congress through a reauthorization of the bill now called the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). As a member of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Sanders was an active participant in that process.

When this legislation was still in the Senate, he – along with almost all Democrats – voted for a failed amendment that would have continued most of the worst aspects of NCLB. The bill eventually passed the chamber in a potentially more palatable form. Sanders eventually voted for that Senate version but was conspicuously absent from the final vote."

Since ESSA still requires states to adopt College and Career Ready Standards and have an education plan that is approved by the Secretary of Education, we can safely say that Sanders supports Common Core.

As for Hillary Clinton, her close association with Marc Tucker, the NEA and AFT and the Real World Forums make it clear that she supports Common Core and the use of public education for workforce planning.

From Stop Common Core NH:

"To make the public think they had thought of the changes schools needed to make, the NCEE (Tucker), Hillary Clinton, and Robert Reich established the Real World Forums.  These were local community meetings in which the facilitators used the Delphi Technique (psychological manipulation methods) to make the attendees think they had actual input into the final Real World Forum report."

"However, what actually happened is that the final “report” had already been written by NCEE/Clinton/Reich and focused schools on collaborative learning, interpersonal relations, and the affective domain (feelings, emotions, opinions).  This took the emphasis in the public schools off deep content knowledge and individual learning and moved classrooms into group think, co-operative learning,  and outcomes based education."

Martin O'Malley's support for Common Core has remained constant. In 2009, as Governor, O’Malley supported the development and implementation of Common Core in Maryland. As recently as 2014-15 Governor O’Malley supported the administration of Common Core PARCC tests in Maryland.  Read more about his support for common core here.

Refuse the Test 2016

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 to 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!

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.

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

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.

Sign Up For Email Notices
Get the daily education news on our blog MissouriEducationWatchdog.com


Check out our new Books tab under Resources for some great books you can find to really understand the scope of what is happening to public education. Common Core is just one part of the machine.

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!

Had enough of public school yet?

Check out our Homeschooling page for information about your rights to homeschool and links to Missouri resources for parents just like you.
Contact Us:
Anne Gassel

Gretchen Logue

[email protected]

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

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.

States that have rejected 

Common Core 2015

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

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.
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.