Senate GOP’s “School Safety” Bill Would Imperil Student Privacy, Expand Police State

In the midst of the impeachment charade, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and a number of his GOP colleagues introduced a bill to address mass shootings. However, privacy groups, particularly those who advocate for student privacy, question the larger effect of the bill. Is it really about mass shootings? Or is it just building a bigger, more invasive police state?    Cornyn’s bill, the RESPONSE Act, is co-sponsored by Republican Sens. McSally (Ariz.), Ernst (Iowa), Tillis (N.C.), Capito (W. Va.), and Scott (S.C.). It has three major components: addressing unlicensed gun dealers and enhanced criminal penalties, developing crisis intervention and mental health services to include

How States Can Fix Math Education Post-Common Core

As the evidence becomes clearer that experts and parents were right about Common Core being an academic disaster and not merely derailed by implementation problems, states must grapple with the hard work of revamping their education standards. Thanks to the excellent executive order of Governor Ron DeSantis, Florida is deeply involved in doing just that. Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee and perhaps other states will be soon starting the same process. Today we will discuss mathematics standards. These standards must be done right from the beginning because math is such a sequential discipline that, if they are poorly done, math education can

More Schools Discard Student Privacy in Elusive Quest for Safety

As efforts increase to protect school safety in the wake of high-profile school shootings like those in Parkland and Sandy Hook, so do data collection efforts by states and schools that significantly undermine student privacy. A recent article by Education Week outlined several of these efforts across the nation. Particularly disturbing are efforts to monitor students’ social media posts and combine them with the myriad of other data collected on students regarding behavior, discipline, legal encounters, and family status to try to predict violent or suicidal behavior. The Florida Stop Common Core Coalition covered such an effort by the Miami-Dade

Here’s What States Should Do to Really Get Rid of Common Core

At the end of last week’s column discussing yet another study demonstrating the colossal academic failure of the Common Core standards in math and English Language Arts (ELA), I said the following: All of this shows that the January 31st executive order of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis to eliminate Common Core from the Sunshine State and the more recent decision by Georgia Governor Brian Kemp to pursue the same goal are extremely important and correct. The Florida Stop Common Core Coalition, in consultation with multiple national experts, has just released a list of recommendations with detailed documentation to help both states achieve this critical and laudable goal. More details

Lawmakers Still Pushing “Personalized Learning” Despite Huge Problems

The corporate technology push of machine-based skills training continues to march across the nation. This effort goes by the names such as “competency-based education” (CBE), “personalized learning,” and “mastery education.” It has been well described by Jane Robbins, Peter Greene, here and in this space. The latest is a bill in Florida that seeks to expand what was supposed to be a five-year pilot project for four school districts and the University of Florida experimental school to all 67 Florida school districts after only two and a half years. This expansion is problematic, not only because of an absence of

Fla. Lawmakers Debate Parental Consent Abortion Bill

A bill is advancing in the Florida State House that would require parental consent before a minor could obtain an abortion. House Bill 1335 passed the House Judiciary Committee on April 3rd and is now being heard before the Health and Human Services Committee. This bill would require doctors to receive notarized written consent and government-issued proof of identification from a parent or legal guardian before their minor child is allowed to obtain an abortion. If a minor wants an abortion without parental consent, they must go to a judge with their case. Florida currently notifies parents about their minor

Gov. Ron DeSantis Takes Important Step to End Common Core in Florida

Last week, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis followed through on an oft-repeated campaign pledge to “end the last vestiges” of Common Core in the Sunshine State. He signed Executive Order 19-32 that directs Florida Department of Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran to “comprehensively review the academic standards for Florida’s Kindergarten through grade twelve students and provide recommended revisions to Governor DeSantis”: The recommendations shall: Articulate how Florida will eliminate Common Core (Florida Standards) and ensure we return to the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic; Provide a roadmap to make Florida’s standards number one in the nation; Reflect Florida Department of Education

Violent Attack in Fla. School Shows Danger of Obama-Era Discipline Policy

Andrew Pollack — father of Meadow Pollack, one of the seventeen students and staff murdered in the Parkland shooting last February — recently posted a two-part video of a fight at Monarch High School in Broward County, Florida: Here is part 1 of the brutal fight at @browardschools. The Promise program implemented by Obama & supported by @RobertwRuncie has allowed kids to go undetected/unpunished in the school system. These diversionary programs led to the murder of my daughter and 16 other kids. pic.twitter.com/3BlbFTYTD0 — Andrew Pollack (@AndrewPollackFL) November 14, 2018 Broward schools @RobertwRuncie allowed this girl to get a civil

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