Thursday, September 19, 2013

East Newton passes resolution against Common Core Standards

The East Newton R-6 Board of Education, by a 5-1 vote with one member abstaining, passed a resolution against Common Core Standards earlier this evening.

The resolution had been the subject of much discussion during the board's August meeting and an informational meeting on Common Core Standards in July in the East Newton High School Gymnasium drew more than 150 patrons.

The movement against Common Core was also discussed at the August Neosho R-5 Board of Education meeting and will be the subject of a meeting tentatively scheduled for October 26 at a location yet to be determined in Joplin.

 The original resolution reads as follows> I will try to post the revised version later today.

Resolution of the School District of East Newton, R- 6 to Stop the Implementation of
Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI) 2013

This RESOLUTION was made and adopted by the Board of Education of the School District of East Newton, R- 6, on the date set forth after the signature of each of the board members set forth below.
I. Whereas CCSSI is Education without Representation:

1. Whereas, CCSSI was never approved by Congress, but was included in the “four assurances” required of governors to apply for of the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund and Race to the Top grants funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Congressional approval to fund a new national education program was bypassed. Many Congressmen still know nothing about it. (,

2. Whereas, CCSSI was never approved by MO State legislators; they were bypassed as well.

3. Whereas, CCSSI was never formally reviewed and approved by our local school board, and the Common Core standards are copyrighted to non-government, trade organizations; and whereas, adoption of these copyright standards creates irreversible changes to the American political system and damage to traditional education and to local autonomy; yet local schools are responsible for unknown costs associated with its implementation. (,

4. Whereas, CCSSI is not a state-led initiative and should not be called such; it was not commissioned by any state legislature, initiated or written by any State School Boards, nor by any local school board. Pearson’s, Sally Hampton and Phil Daro spearheaded the development of the standards ( Elected state and local officials had no idea Common Core even existed until it was thrust upon them by requirements to access stimulus-funded grant projects and the No Child Left Behind Waiver scheme,

5. Whereas, the international influence of the Bill Gates Foundation in the Gates-UNESCO agreement of 2004, and the Pearson Foundation, associated with a global publishing company based in the UK that has offices in 70 other countries, gave substantial funds for the development of the CCSSI, making their influence greater than that of local school boards,

6. Whereas, the State Board of Education was not authorized by language in the sections of SB 380 the Outstanding Schools Act to transfer its responsibility to develop, that is write, edit, and evaluate, state standards to a Washington-based, non-governmental organization that controls the number and content of the standards. Personnel of Achieve Inc., having no classroom teaching experience, were chief architects of the standards, while MO faculty representative of higher education and active classroom teachers from English Language Arts and mathematics did not participate in the drafting of the standards. (,

7. Whereas, the international influence of the Bill Gates Foundation in the Gates-UNESCO agreement of 2004 (, the GE Foundation (, and the Pearson Foundation, associated with a global corporations, and the U.S. Department of Education which collaborates with UNESCO, the education arm of the United Nations gave substantial funds for the development of the CCSSI, making their global influence greater than that of local school boards,

8. Whereas, “. . . the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers never explained to the public what the qualifications were for membership on the standards-writing committees or how it would justify the specific standards they created. Most important, it never explained why Common Core's high school exit standards were equal to college admission requirements without qualification, even though this country's wide ranging post-secondary institutions use a variety of criteria for admission; and . . . Both testing consortia, funded by the USDE, are currently developing curriculum frameworks, models, and guides, as well as instructional materials, behind closed doors, with no public procedures for the selection of curriculum developers, for public comment and further revision, and for final public approval if what the USDE and these testing consortia are doing is constitutional and legal. . .” (Sandra Stotsky testimony to Texas legislature,

9. Whereas, Governor Jay Nixon sat on the Board of Directors of the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices which holds the copyright to the CCSSI English and math standards, when the standards were developed (National Governors Association Center for Best Practices Form 990, 2010; and sits on the Board of Directors of Achieve (, which holds the copyright to the Next Generation Science Standards (, and therefore, is engaged in a conflict of interest with respect to decision-making about the CCSSI,
II. Whereas CCSSI is Taxation without Representation:

10. Whereas, CCSSI is very expensive. It is costing an estimated $16 billion for the entire nation to implement it and Missouri’s Race to the Top application estimated costs to be over $740 million. Individual school districts are committed to paying unknown costs associated with implementing Common Core assessment plans, and purchase of materials, which tax payers and their elected representatives never had any say about and which has not been tested. (;,

11. Whereas, President Obama has announced an increase in telephone tax to pay for classroom computer technology in order to collect individual student assessment data. ConnectED could cost an additional 40 cents per month, or $5 a year, on home phone bills without approval from Congress (,

12. Whereas, Common Core is not just a set of minimum standards adopted by Missouri’s State Board of Education during a regular cycle of curriculum frameworks review, but, CCSSI was written by a national/international cartel consisting of members of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO); the National Governors’ Association (NGA); and a chief education policy group that is part of the NGA. These groups were joined by members of the Obama Administration; a progressive group called Achieve; the national teacher unions – the FTA, NEA, and the College Board. As such, CCSSI is driven by massive special interest groups and corporations that stand to make billions of dollars by the taxpayer funded schools ( having to purchase computers, software, for every student in the classroom and the Pearson publication of e-books instead of text books and Pearson-developed tests. In addition, the Gates and Pearson Foundations have formed a partnership to do all the training of the teachers in the new learning methods costing taxpayers millions dollars,
III. Whereas the NGA/CCSSO’s CCSSI Violates the Intent of 3 Federal Education Laws to prohibit a federal role in curriculum and assessment development:

13. Whereas, the Department of Education Organizational Act of 1979; the General Education Provision Act and the Elementary and Secondary Act of 1965 that was amended by No Child Left Behind of 2001 each prohibits the Federal Department of Education from involvement in developing, supervising, or controlling instructional materials or curriculum (Federal Law 20 USC 1232a-Sec. 1232a. and The Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) Pub.L. 89-10, 79 Stat. 27, 20 US.C. ch. 70), CCSSI and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium assessment tests coming in 2014 were funded, incentivized, and will be controlled under the direction of the Federal Department of Education. (The Council of Chief State School Officers and The National Governors Association Center for Best Practices Common Core Standards Memorandum of Agreement, June 25, 2009; Cooperative Agreement Between the U.S. Department of Education and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium and the State of Washington, January 7, 2011),
IV. Whereas CCSSI under the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund and the ESEA Flexibility Waiver Calls for Extensive, Invasive Data Collection on Students and Teachers:

14. Whereas, the Memorandum of Agreement between the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium and the U. S. Department of Education states, “. . . the [SBAC] assessments systems developed with the RTTA grants will assess all students . . . will produce data (including student achievement data and student growth data) that can be used to inform (b) determinations of individual principal and teacher effectiveness for purposes of evaluation (p. 2); . . .Comply with . . . working with the Department to develop a strategy to make student-level data that results from
the assessment system available on an ongoing basis for research, including for prospective linking, . . .”
The collection of data on the teachers is making them afraid to speak out against Common Core, even though many do not like it (,

15. Whereas, State Fiscal Stability Funds required agreement to the same components as Race to the Top Grant applications including enhancing the state’s longitudinal data system, and encouraging sharing of data systems among states (, Missouri Initial Application, p. E-1; Federal Register, July 29, 2009)

16. Whereas, MO has no formal restrictions on DESE from populating data systems designed according to the National Data Model of over 400 data points including non-education related information such as religion, voting history, biometric data, etc. ( ),

17. Whereas, the Federal Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) was amended by the FDOE in Dec. 2011 to exceed the agency’s statutory authority and thus, allows invasive data collecting on both students and teachers without clear definitions or full control of what “educational interests” do with the data once they have them (McGroarty, E. & Robbins, J., New York Post Dec 27, 2011. How the feds are tracking your kid),

18. Whereas, Missouri did not receive Race to the Top Funds, and school district support of that application which included adoption of Common Core State Standards is null and void,
V. Whereas the CC Standards and Curriculum are not Higher and are not More “Rigorous” as touted:
19. Whereas, Missouri’s Show Me Standards were internationally benchmarked, and requirements for proficiency in fourth grade were the second-most rigorous requirements in the country ( Benchmarking_State_Ed__Perf_Standards.pdf), but, the Common Core State Standards are merely internationally informed (

20. Whereas, according to James Milgram from Stanford University, the only math content expert on the CCSSI validation committee, and who has extensive background in standards development, stated in his testimony to the Texas legislature, “. . . there are a number of extremely serious failings in Core Standards that make it premature for any state with serious hopes for improving the quality of the mathematical education of their children to adopt them. This remains true in spite of the fact that more than 35 states have already adopted them.” ( (; and Sandra Stotsky from University of Arkansas with extensive background in standards development, stated in her testimony to the Texas legislature, “Common Core’s “college readiness” standards for English language arts and reading do not aim for a level
of achievement that signifies readiness for authentic college-level work (

21. Whereas, five of the 29 members on the review committee refused to sign off on the Common Core math and English literature saying the standards were being lowered (,

22. Whereas, the dissent of 500 early childhood professionals of many professional disciplines including educators, pediatricians, and child psychologists who reviewed the standards and found they were developmentally inappropriate was ignored (Joint Statement of Early Childhood Health and Education Professionals on the Common Core Standards Initiative, March 2, 2010, ); and, likewise, the dissent of a coalition of over 200 educational and other leaders, representing a broad diversity of viewpoints was also ignored (Closing the Door on Innovation, .,

23. Whereas, the Fordham Institute’s final evaluation of the science standards indicated they were “. . .clearly inferior to those of twelve states and the District of Columbia, as well as the NAEP and TIMSS frameworks,” and determined they were too close to call with respect to Missouri’s existing Show-Me science standards (, making their adoption unnecessary and irresponsible,

1. Recognizes the CCSS for what it is – a component of the four assurances that are designed to manipulate states and facilitate unconstitutional federal overreach to standardize and control the education of our children for the purposes of workforce planning, agreed to by Governor Nixon outside of due process while on the Board of Directors of the National Governors Association,

2. Recognizes that, as per Missouri Revised Statute 160.514 of the Missouri Outstanding School Act, curriculum frameworks adopted by the state board of education may be used by school districts, and we exercise our right not to adopt the Missouri Core Standards/Common Core State Standards curricular framework for the ______________ School District,

3. Recognizes that, as per Missouri Revised Statute 160.514 of the same Act, the state board of education shall develop a statewide assessment system that provides maximum flexibility for local school districts to determine the degree to which students in the public schools of the state are proficient in the knowledge, skills, and competencies adopted by such board, and we exercise our right to insist on that flexibility, declining to participate in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium assessments,

4. Rejects the collection of student assessment data outside of the limits specified in Missouri Revised Statute 160.518; and rejects the collection of personal student data for any non-educational purpose without the prior written consent of an adult student or a child student’s parent and rejects the sharing of such personal data, without the prior written consent of an adult student or a child student’s parent, with any person or entity other than schools or education agencies within the state

5. Insist that the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education shall adopt academic standards and a statewide assessment system as required by Missouri Revised Statute 160.526 of the same Act, that is, as appropriated by the legislature,

6. Call on the Governor and the Missouri State Board of Education to withdraw from the Common Core State Standards Initiative, and we ask the Missouri State Legislature to discontinue funding programs in association with, The Common Core State Standards Initiative/Missouri’s Core and any other alliance that promotes and tests for un-American and inferior curricular, standards and assessments aligned to them; and,

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a copy of this resolution shall be delivered to the Governor and the State legislature for executive and legislative action
This resolution was adopted by the Board of Education of the School District of East Newton, R-6 on
 (area left to sign date)

I will have more information tomorrow (Friday).


Anonymous said...

Thank you, thank you for all your hard work.

Wynelle said...

Brilliant! Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I do not live in the East Newton school district, but I know that Common Core does not work for elementary school students. My only child is currently attending a Christian school that is attempting to use Common Core for math. I feel that children need to learn basic math before attempting Common Core. Thank you East Newton and the East Newton Board of Education.

Unknown said...

Thank you for leading the exodus of Missouri school districts from Common Core. I hope many more will follow so less children are adversely affected by the social experiment. Thank you so very much!

Anonymous said...

This is sheer brilliance!! I absolutely love it! Bravo, you all! May sanity continue to prevail in other states, as well. We are homeschooling for the first time EVER due to the considerable shortcomings of Common Core in our Michigan schools. One year of that nonsense was enough for us!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations !!!! Now I just wish the Gwinn Area Community School District in Gwinn, Michigan, would see Common Core for what it really is. I disenrolled my child from public school and will now be homeschooling him. I hope many school districts will follow in your example.

Anonymous said...

So proud of East Newton for taking a stand for the children in their district. ANSWERS should not be so hard, and since no official at the state is willing to answer ANY of the public's questions they were forced to do the responsible thing by passing this resolution. BRAVO to the East Newton BOA for taking a stand. They are the model for all school districts in the state to follow.