florida-countdown-common-core-launch-logo

Open letter to the voters of Florida on Common Core 3-30-15

Here’s a simple question for you to ask YOUR representative and Senator: “Are you representing your constituents and the children and educators of your district? Or do you just push the buttons they tell you to push?”

“Did you make a back room deal, or do you really believe (not!) that the education bill now presented actually helps alleviate the problems of Common Core and High Stakes Testing?” If you do, exactly what improvement was proposed? Then watch them squirm…

I CHALLENGE you to do this, and do it NOW. They will vote in session on April 1 (April fools day-how appropriate) for a bill that KEEPS COMMON CORE, KEEPS HIGH STAKES TESTING, KEEPS the contract with AIR ($220 million) in spite of the FSA failures, and still spends BILLIONS to administer computerized tests which benefits the corporate cronies (Bill Gates, Pearson, GE, George Soros, Rupert Murdock, Walmart, HP) who are funding Jeb Bush’s presidential campaign.

You know, I have spent a lot of time in the State Capitol talking with legislators to let them know we have been FOOLED by the many false claims by Bush, Rick Scott, and their sycophants about how GREAT Florida schools are- How we have “accountability,” “rigorous standards” and learning gains are enormous!

But we have shown them the REAL story comparing our students with nationally normed and validated tests that have been in use for decades, the ACT test. It shows Florida’s results in free fall since Jeb Bush took over since 1998. We are 5th from the bottom when compared to other states in this validated test which measures knowledge, not just test taking skills.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The FCAT and FSA is a proprietary test which does NOT provide accountability to taxpayers and parents. It has no relationship to other states. Listen to what Senator Gaetz, a former superintendent of schools, now huge supporter of Jeb Bush says.

In committee January 7, 2015, Senator Gaetz said: http://thefloridachannel.org/videos/1715-senate-education-prek-12-committee/. At hour 1:15, after Commissioner Pam Stewart’s presentation.

“Here’s what I’ve learned today.”

  1. “We don’t know how much time is consumed by Statewide Assessments.”
  2. “We don’t know how much money it costs to perform state mandated tests.”
  3. “We don’t know whether tests that are performed by state mandate are valid and reliable.”
  4. “We’ve learned today that we have no contingency plan if there are problems with statewide assessments.”
  5. “We have not beta tested statewide assessments.”

Then he voted for it.

WHY? Knowing all that. there is only one answer. MONEY AND POWER! Leadership controls everything in Tallahassee. Our shadow leader is Jeb Bush. His puppets are hoping for Washington appointments, jobs, endorsements, campaign money or other “crumbs from Longshanks’ table.”

Jeb Bush’s special friends include, Rick Scott, Don and Matt Gaetz, John Legg, Steve Crisafulli, Eric Fresen, Lizbeth Benacquisto, Garrett Richter, Jack Latvala, Bill Galvano, Andy Gardiner, Blaize Ingoglia, Kelly Stargel, Janet Adkins, Marlene O’Toole and others you may find attending the Foundation for Excellence in Education, their favors funneling organization.

Ask your legislators if they attend their functions. Ask who paid for their travel, expenses, incidentals, and what happened at the meetings they had there with Bush’s cronies, Pearson, Gates and other vendors.

Now you know why and how your children, the future of Florida and the Nation, are being thrown under the bus. Will you stand quietly, or will you join us in holding THEM accountable for massive spending and purposely crippling our kids future?

CALL THEM NOW to stop this bill, HB7069 and SB616, and start over.  We pay them for solutions, not kicking the can down the road while our children are subject to State sponsored child abuse.

REAL solutions were presented in HB1121 and SB1496, but Jeb Bush controlled leadership killed these bills by not allowing them to be heard.  Bring them back and STAY there until you get it right.  We are watching.

RELATED ARTICLE: This Top Teacher Is Right: Common Core Is Wrong Solution