The Plot Thickens in Common Core State Standards Controversy
I recently told you that the Common Core State Standards were created by big business and special interest groups. I also told you that the standards are surrounded by corruption and personal agendas. All unfortunate news, but it gets worse yet…
It seems that Achieve, Inc. hasn’t learned much from the NSA fall-out… You see, it wants states to track our kids and store their data using the P-20 Data Systems. Achieve believes that “States must collect, coordinate, and use K-12 and postsecondary data to track and improve the readiness of graduates to succeed in college and the workplace.” Achieve wants to create an “early warning system” to monitor dropout rates, graduation rates, student preparedness, etc. But it’s all too Orwellian if you ask me.
A Lifetime Companion?
According to Achieve’s website, “Longitudinal data systems should follow individual students from grade to grade and school to school, all the way from kindergarten through postsecondary education and into the workplace.” Oh yeah, states who participate in Common Core are going to track our kids from kindergarten through high school. And if our kids go to colleges that participate in the data systems, their data will continue to be collected. The insanity doesn’t end there though. They’ll even be tracked once they’re in the work force. Achieve believes that states “must follow students through K–12 into postsecondary and the workforce and establish feedback loops to the relevant stakeholders to make informed decisions that improve policies and practices around increasing student preparedness.”
Clear Cut Intrusion of Privacy
You’re probably wondering what information the states plan to collect, and in fact the amount and nature of the data to be collected and stored is overwhelming and alarming. In addition to the traditional data points, the current P-20 longitudinal data system can collect more than 400 individual pieces of data on students. Some of it isn’t surprising: medical conditions, learning disabilities and behavior problems. But do you want states tracking your kids’ hobbies, their family income, religious affiliations and even their sexual preferences? I don’t think so.
Who’s so interested in this data? Did you notice the mention of “relevant stakeholders”? But Achieve’s lips are tightly sealed on this little detail… Chances are it’ll be Common Core donors from corporate America, special interest groups and the government (big surprise).
Where are states getting the money for the longitudinal data systems, anyway? Well, from the National Center for Education Statistics’ Statewide Longitudinal Data System (SLDS) Grant Program. The program is fueling the data systems from start to finish. It’s involved in every step of the process from system “design, development, implementation, and expansion.”
The grant program’s website echoes Achieve’s goals for the data systems: “These systems are intended to enhance the ability of States to efficiently and accurately manage, analyze, and use education data, including individual student records. The SLDSs should help states, districts, schools, educators, and other stakeholders to make data-informed decisions to improve student learning and outcomes.”
Behind the Scenes
So who’s behind the systems? inBloom is a nonprofit organization that was created thanks to a $100 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Carnegie Foundation. The organization was formed specifically to track and analyze student data collected by states and school districts. inBloom hired Wireless Generation, a News Corp. (NWS) subsidiary, to develop the organization’s software infrastructure. (By the way, News Corp. is involved in Common Core in more than one way. Its education division, Amplify, received a $12.5 million grant “to develop a digital library of formative assessment professional learning tools for educators.”)
This attack on our education system is unspeakable, really. An exceptional example, though, of the intricacy of how the government functions to violate our privacy and brilliantly keep its own pockets good and lined. Every move they make must be thoroughly scrutinized… And this time they’re bringing our kids into it… Remember, all of this information has the potential to follow our kids throughout their lives, even after they’ve completed their education. This system is ripping from our children the luxury we’re afforded, as humans, to make mistakes, and continue to grow, moving on from the past. This show must not go on.
In pursuit of the truth,