The Florida State Board of Education (FL SBOE) meeting on Common Core State Standards was held in Orlando on February 18th. Concerned citizens attended to speak and wave signs in protest. Nearly one hundred signed up to speak and implore the Board to reject Common Core in Florida.
I must say, I was so proud to be among the dedicated and articulate speakers at the State Board of Education hearing clarifying why we are vehemently opposed to Common Core. The impassioned testimony at the State Board of Education meeting in Orlando showed a disappointing and at times disgusting lack of respect on the part of the Chair, Gary R. Chartrand.
Here is the video link to the entire meeting: http://thefloridachannel.org/videos/21814-state-board-education-meeting.
It is worthwhile to listen to the entire testimony. Every single speaker was excellent! You will be shocked at Chartrand’s conduct.
You may wish to start after the full hour of awards, group photos and self-adulation, for which the board had plenty of time. About 1 hour 10 minutes in, Mr. Chartrand begins the public comment and alerts us that instead of 3 minutes, he will only allow 2 minutes each and that no clapping would be allowed.
After people began respectful clapping for a speaker at 1 hour 16 minutes, it was my turn to speak. Chartrand interrupts me and again stops the proceedings to admonish the audience. I began by saying, “I object to the reduction of time and the lack of respect for the speakers who have traveled long distances for an opportunity to express their views.” It is then he starts an argument with me, interrupting me again in an intimidating manner. The audience responds as well. He interrupted other speakers as they had difficulty chopping their well-crafted 3 minute speeches to just 2 minutes.
It is a continuation of the arrogance shown by the Florida Department of Education, State Board of Education, the Governor and some members of the state legislature. Those who are against adoption of Common Core have been polite but are being ignored. Many of the groups attending brought the experts to them, yet the FL SBOE said our facts were wrong. We said parents should be in control. They stated the federal government knows best what to do with our kids.
The State Board of Education in a unanimous vote, adopted the Common Core Standards with the minor changes they added many termed this putting “lipstick on a pig.”
Far from being discouraged, the group gathered to talk about their next moves, and resolved never to allow Corporate Cronies who have greased the skids to sell our kids for their quest for money and power. They may have the money, but we have the truth and we will never sell our children out to the progressives who want a compliant citizenry called “Human Capital.”
We must redouble our efforts against this tyrannical child abuse called Common Core. Join our efforts. Our ads are spreading the word across the nation. You can help by going to www.ivbe.org and make a tax deductible contribution to our ads which are now playing in Florida and Pennsylvania. Contact the Governor: (850) 488-7146 or email him by clicking here: http://www.flgov.com/contact-gov-scott/email-the-governor/
I encourage you to tell him what you think about Common Core and its mainlining of our children with government propaganda. You may wish to ask your state representative and senator to stand up for our kids and vote for one of the bills to STOP COMMON CORE!
Various bills are now being considered on Common Core in the State Legislature. Rep. Debbie Mayfield (R-FL District 54) has introduced HB 25 but has met resistance as the leadership has opposed it. The leadership under Senator John Legg who owns charter schools and Senator Don Gaetz (R-FL District 1) who has close ties to Jeb Bush, the Foundation for Florida’s Future and Foundation for Excellence in Education. In a Tampa Bay Times article Gaetz is quoted as saying:
Top choice for 2016 is Jeb Bush: Gaetz said Florida’s former governor is the Republican Party’s strongest choice for president in 2016, even as a new poll by Democratic-aligned Public Policy Polling said most Florida Republicans prefer U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio to run over Bush.
“I’m a Jeb Bushie,” he said, adding Bush’s book on immigration reform “will turn heads.”
Patricia Levesque is the Executive Director for Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Florida’s Future. She served as Governor Jeb Bush’s deputy chief of staff for education. Previously, Patricia served six years in the Florida Legislature in the Speakers Office and as staff director over education policy. Her husband is The Senate counsel, George Levesque. Entangling relationships seem to trump the will of the people.
Twenty-seven County Republican Executive Committees have resolved against Common Core, not to mention the Republican National Committee, and both the Florida and National Federation of Republican Women. It is curious why Rick Scott has chosen not to listen to the conservatives who recognize Common Core is unconstitutional as it is a federal takeover of education supported by President Obama, Secretary Arne Duncan, the Center for American Progress (established and funded by George Soros)and establishment Republicans, like former Governors Mike Huckabee and Jeb Bush.
Jeb Bush endorsed Rick Scott’s campaign for reelection and this is what Rick Scott said:
“I am grateful to have the support and friendship of Governor Jeb Bush. His time as governor built a strong foundation for Florida’s future by making our education system more accountable and our state’s economy more attractive to job creators. His positive vision for Florida continues to inspire us today as we work to cut taxes and get our economy back on track.”
Meanwhile, the same people who are listed as contributors to Jeb’s foundations are supporting Rick Scott’s campaign. They also stand to gain Billions from Common Core. They have paid hundreds of millions to quiet opposition to the national takeover of education. The list of grants and contributions is publicly available on the web sites of the foundations. The National Education Association, PTA, State Boards of Education, various media outlets, Fordham Institute, and Jeb Bush’s Foundations were all recipients of generous awards from Microsoft, the Eli Broad Foundation, GE, and Pearson PLC, the textbook company whose third largest shareholder is the Government of Libya.
Gary Chartrand, Chair of the Florida State Board of Education stated at the meeting that he calculates that the expense of just getting initially set up with computers and bandwidth for the required implementation of Common Core would run over $2.5 Billion. Federal funding they received was only $700 million. No budgets were ever submitted or reviewed by state legislators or the State Board of Education to approve the adoption of Common Core.
It was approved by the State Board of Education with no dialog about the expense to the taxpayers of the state.
RELATED COLUMN: Obama Asserts Federal Control Over Discipline in Public Schools
EDITORS NOTE: Rob Bluey reports, “In a letter to the National Education Association’s 3 million members, President Dennis Van Roekel issued a sharp critique of Common Core. It marks the first time NEA has voiced concerns about the standards, a key initiative of the Obama Administration.”
I am sure it won’t come as a surprise to hear that in far too many states, implementation has been completely botched. Seven of ten teachers believe that implementation of the standards is going poorly in their schools. Worse yet, teachers report that there has been little to no attempt to allow educators to share what’s needed to get [Common Core State Standards] implementation right. In fact, two thirds of all teachers report that they have not even been asked how to implement these new standards in their classrooms.
Common Core Standards Threaten Our Children’s Schools