By DONLYN TURNBULL
You’d think the Obama administration would have learned not to mess with the Tea Party in 2010. They are about to learn you can’t mess with their kids either. In a renewed sense of vigor after noticing the targets painted on their backs, tea party patriots are organizing all over the country to combat what they affectionately call, ‘ObamaCore’.
The grassroots movement is gaining momentum in pressuring state legislatures to reject the federal program know as the Common Core State Standards through organized marches on individual state capitals. Currently 45 states and the District of Columbia, including Florida, have fully adopted the bipartisan program. The Tea Party received an adrenaline shot as the large DC non-profit group FreedomWorks became involved in the movement to halt the standards.
But like ObamaCare, Governors first voted on the program without knowing what was in it. Florida opponents are seeking repeal of the program or at the very least an 18-month moratorium so costs can be determined and a full inquiry as to what the program actually contains.
The financial cost is just one part of the argument. In Florida, it is believed to cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $400 million dollars for one year, the total cost of FCATs for 12 years, says Dr. Karen Effrem, president of the group Education Liberty Watch which fights for parents to maintain the rights in their child’s education. And taxpayers will be the one fitting the bill.
Effrem warns of other dangers from the standards. She explains the long arm of the Government will reach not just to public schools, but private and home schools will also be required to comply. “Do we want the ensnarement of private and home school students that will basically have no alternative to public education?” She said in April.
The content alone is abhorrent. Even though supporters claim the program teaches historical information such as the Constitution, Liberty Watch says the Constitution is only taught in small bits and not the document in full. The program will also include such indoctrination as an EPA manual about insulation. The Gettysburg Address, they say, is instructed to be taught without emotion, historical context or background information.
The tea party insists this is an attempt at a complete takeover of curriculum by the Federal Government although supporters of the program disagree and claim it is simply “standards” that is fully state-led. It is not. Federal funding will only come with the passing of the national tests. The states would have to teach the curriculum to pass the tests.
According to the group Floridians Against Common Core Education (FACCE) the requirements will remove individual critical thinking and problem solving skills and replace them with a one size fits all homogenized education that lowers standards, discourages individual success, and instead simply prepares children for the work force.
And as usual, it’s all about the money. State compliance is necessary to receive their Race to the Top program money from the 2009 stimulus. Once again, Obama is bribing states to relinquish portions of their power to the federal Government.
In light of all the recent invasions of privacy scandals through data-mining and secret spying on Americans, Common Core will require invasive data concerning our children to be turned over to the Government. Including information such as, the exact location of the children’s bus stops, blood types, religious and political affiliations, as well as physiological response data to predict the child’s future and to shape that role.
Currently Lawmakers in 7 states have introduced bills to repeal the standards or postpone implementation. Among supporters of the program is former Governor Jeb Bush who is actively standing against the Tea Party encouraging legislators to “not pull back.” “The Common Cause State Standards are clear and straight forward,” he said last month and claims the standards are “high and lofty.”
But administration beware, hell hath no fury like a Tea Party scorned.