Money To Learn

Join the National Day of Action for Full Funding of ESSA Student Success
By Jodi Peterson

Science educators, teacher leaders, and others in the STEM education community are encouraged to join thousands of K-12 educators, counselors, technology specialists, and librarians on October 26 for the national “Day of Action” to urge Congress to fully fund the flexible block grant (Student Support and Academic Enrichment Title IV, Part A) recently authorized in the Every Student Succeeds Act.
The Student Support and Academic Enrichment block grant is designed to ensure that high needs districts have access to programs that foster safe and healthy students, provide students with a well-rounded education . . .

This grant is not designed to provide and excellent education to all students but to support programs “that foster safe and healthy students” and while this is a noble goal, a more noble goal would be to foster safe, healthy, knowledgeable students.

As well, we must ask, “What exactly is a “well-rounded education?” other than an ambiguous term that can be defined and confined in any number of ways.

The federal government does not need more tax dollars that can be funneled into the coffers of “hedgehogs”. Grants that serve only a small population of students rarely benefit our entire student population.

Billions of dollars are granted to a small number of States and even less trickles down to local education agencies that deal directly with children.

Most educational grant funding is spent on administrative costs with very little addressing student achievement.

For the “hedgehogs” “the effective use of technology in our nation’s schools” means more data collection through the use of computers designed to capture economic data from our children they can use to guide spending to increase their profits.

More money is not the answer. Fiduciary accountability is.

We must stop the “carte blanche” spending of our federal, state, and local governments on programs that will enrich the elite and begin to spend educational tax dollars on providing every child in America with an excellent education that recognizes and respects their gifts and talents.

Join the Movement to Save Our Children!

Scientists, Statistics, And Specialized Agencies?

U.S. Department of Education Fails Utterly In Its Responsibility to Oversee Charter School Sector
by janresseger

In her post Resseger quotes political scientist Jacob Hacker and Berkeley political scientist Paul Pierson from their book titled: American Amnesia which states,

Behavioral economics has identified the problem of “consumer myopia,” a widespread inability of people to discern their own best interests—and something that the marketers of charter schools know how to manipulate as parents look for schools: “We are easily distracted by shiny objects and thus vulnerable to being ‘primed’ to attend to particular aspects of a choice situation . . .We are very bad at assessing risks… We are prone to inertia.” (p. 81)

How should we expect government to correct for this widespread problem?

Research results are clear: . . . (W)e need government nudges, or even firm pushes, to make sound long-term decisions. (p. 82) 

Government’s role? “It’s about setting up basic rules, institutions, and policies that correct the market’s most serous failures… Moreover, government has sources of expertise (scientists, statistics, specialized agencies) that become more capable as societies become more complex. Increased complexity and interdependence make the case for a capable, informed public sector, not for letting markets alone deal with these challenges…” (p. 86)

What these authors are saying is, the American public is too ignorant and childish to make informed decisions as to how the system of education and our entire government should be run.

They have forgotten that “We, the people of the United States” are the government and that a sound, basic public education is supposed to educate the people so that we can govern ourselves and protect our freedoms.

An education is not something that should be held in front of our children like a carrot on a stick, never to be realized because it has been monetized.

Every child in America must receive a free and public, excellent education that concentrates on discovering, developing, and directing their individual gifts and talents towards becoming knowledgeable, actively engaged citizens that become our “sources of expertise” before this country can truly be governed by the people.

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From The Federal Register

Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; 2012/17 Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study:

Abstract: The 2012/17 Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study is conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics, within the U.S. Department of Education. BPS is designed to follow a cohort of students who enroll in postsecondary education for the first time during the same academic year, irrespective of the date of high school completion. The study collects data on students’ persistence in and completion of postsecondary education programs; their transition to employment; demographic characteristics; and changes over time in their goals, marital status, income, and debt, among other indicators.

Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 55,002.

In 2015 federal civilian workers had an average wage of $86,365.00, which is approximately $41.50 an hour for a forty hour week. The average wage for the nation’s 112 million private-sector workers was $58,726.

55,002 burden hours at an average of $41.50 amounts to $2,283,773.00 dollars spent on gathering information on a small group of American citizens that will decide educational policy for the rest of America.

What does this collected information do to further student achievement at the elementary level of education where we are failing to provide all of our children with even an adequate education?

Two million dollars spent on students who have entered postsecondary education when States fail to meet their fiduciary responsibilities and local education agencies warehouse students in class sizes of twenty-five and more in order to reduce their budgets.

This is an unconscionable act of terror against our children’s educational future and our nation’s future as a free society.

It is the corporate mission to maintain their power in deciding educational policy through data collection, standardization, and dehumanization so that the American public can remain ignorant to their control.

We must rise up against the “hedgehog corpoliticos” who would enslave our children and fight to change our current system of education so that it concentrates on discovering, developing, and directing the gifts and talents that all children possess.

We must save our children from this terror.

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The Good Old Days

People are appalled when Donald Trump talks about the “good old days” without thinking about what was good about the past.

In the Fifties when America recognized the injustice of a separate but equal system of education, we stood against the system and changed it.

In the Sixties when police brutality against Black Americans was rampant, we stood together as a nation and fought for our civil rights.

In the “good old days” religious leaders led their congregations to righteousness, standing together against the oppression of an unfair government.

In the “good old days” Americans recognized the American dream could be realized by voting for and electing leaders who believed in the rights of the people.

The elite learned that the “good old days”, should they continue, would strip them of their labor force, reduce their profits, and diminish their power, so they worked diligently to make sure the “good old days” never returned.

By the Seventies, corporations began to lead our system of education towards a new standard. It was no longer acceptable to educate our children to become leaders, they would now be educated to become workers. “College and career readiness” became their misleading mantra, preparing our children for a life of subjugation to an economic system that considers them nothing more than data bits and dollar signs.

Religious leaders who were previously paid by their congregations to save their souls,were now being paid by non-profit organizations led by very profitable corporations to sell their souls to the “company store”.

The American dream became a nightmare of debt, dehumanization, and devolution.

It is time we returned to the “good old days” when Americans believed that America was their country and voted, with pride, for the issues, not the candidate; when we fought for the rights of every American’s right to live in a land where “. . . all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

We should all long for the “good old days”.

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But I Digress

Research has shown everyone that our current system of education is failing our children.

Research has shown everyone that teachers have a biased attitude toward certain groups of children due to the propaganda they have been taught about children who live outside the societal norm.

Research has shown everyone that an excellent education involves exposure, exploration, and experience.

Research has shown everyone that an excellent education is founded in the Arts.

Research has shown everyone that small class sizes and neighborhood schools are more conducive to student success than overcrowding and bussing.

There is no research however, that explains why the American public refuses to gather around and support the concept of changing our current system of education so that it supports the findings of the educational research that has proven that we, as a nation, fail to provide every child in America with an excellent education.

Why are politicians so adamant about maintaining the “status quo” and why are the American people supporting them?

Why do we support gifted and talented programs instead of supporting the gifts and talents all children possess?

Why do we have special schools for children who love to dance and sing and draw and build and play when every child loves to dance and sing and draw and build and play?

Why do we continue to hold “White male” as the standard of achievement?

Why do we continue to hold our children accountable for doing the job of administrators, superintendents, and school boards?

Why are other countries beginning to see that America is no longer great because America is no longer governed by the people but by the politicians corporations use to enslave the people?

Why do we continue to believe that things have changed, will change, without having changed our current system of education?

In November this country will again be faced with voting for the lesser of two evils for president.

Until we change our current system of education we will always be faced to choose between evil and evil which is never any good.

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Believe It

From the Federal Register:

FR Document: 2016-25426
Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; NCER-NPSAS Grants-Connecting Students 2017: Testing the Effectiveness of FAFSA Interventions on College Outcomes

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, ED is proposing a new information collection.

This request is to conduct, in 2017, the “Connecting Students 2017: Testing the Effectiveness of FAFSA Interventions on College Outcomes” study, funded by the NCER-NPSAS grant, designed to measure the effectiveness of an intervention that will provide financial aid information and reminders to college students who were initially interviewed as part of NPSAS:16.

FR Document: 2016-25427
Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; NCER-NPSAS Grants-Financial Aid Nudges: A National Experiment To Increase Retention of Financial Aid and College Persistence

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, ED is proposing a new information collection.

This request is to conduct, in 2017, the “Financial Aid Nudges: A National Experiment to Increase Retention of Financial Aid and College Persistence” study, funded by the NCER-NPSAS grant, designed to measure the effectiveness of an intervention that will provide financial aid information, reminders, and advising to college students who were initially interviewed as part of NPSAS:16.

Valuable education tax dollars are shoring up the profits of testing companies and colleges while our public schools are failing to provide our children with an excellent education.

Each year concerned community members, parents, and students protest the governments lack of support for public schools while billions of education tax dollars are funneled to testing companies to gather information “to measure the effectiveness of an intervention that will provide financial aid information and reminders to college students” and to “provide financial aid information, reminders, and advising to college students.”

How can we, as a nation, in all good conscience, continue to allow “corpoliticos” to usurp our children’s education by funding the collection of information on adults while public schools are underfunded and failing?

We must, as a nation, call for an end to the financial support of higher education institutions until our public school system is fully funded to provide every child in America with an excellent education.

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UNBELIEVABLE

“In 2010, the National Center for Education Research and the National Center for Education Statistics, both within the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences, began collaborating on an education grant opportunity related to the cross-sectional National Postsecondary Student Aid Study.

NPSAS is a large, nationally-representative sample of postsecondary institutions and students that contains student-level records on student demographics and family background, work experience, expectations, receipt of financial aid, and postsecondary enrollment.

Why is this information important to the education of our children?

Since 1987, NPSAS has been fielded every 3 to 4 years, most recently during the 2015-16 academic year.

The goal of this NCER-NCES collaboration is to provide researchers the opportunity to develop “one-off” projects that would target a subset of the NPSAS sample.

Under this NCER-NCES grant opportunity, researchers submit applications to the Education Research Grants program under the Postsecondary and Adult Education topic and to the Exploration or Efficacy/Replication research goals.

How much does this cost taxpayers?

NCER supports research projects using NPSAS subsamples to:
(1) Explore the relations between postsecondary persistence and completion, and malleable factors (as well as the mediators and moderators of those relationships) . . .
(2) evaluate the efficacy of interventions aimed at improving persistence and completion of postsecondary education.

Through the grant award, researchers can obtain indirect access to a subsample of the NPSAS sample after the study’s student interviews have been completed.

For what reason?

This request is to conduct, in 2017, the “Connecting Students 2017: Testing the Effectiveness of FAFSA Interventions on College Outcomes” study, funded by the NCER-NPSAS grant, designed to measure the effectiveness of an intervention that will provide financial aid information and reminders to college students who were initially interviewed as part of NPSAS:16.

How does this improve student outcomes at the elementary level of education where our children are failing?

Our educational tax dollars must be spent providing every child in America with an excellent education that concentrates on discovering, developing, and directing their individual gifts and talents towards becoming knowledgeable, actively engaged citizens who realize that educating children is more important that securing the profits of “hedgehogs”.

Join the Movement to Save Our Children!