Regarding The POTUS’ Task Force On 21st Century Policing

This month, the Dept. of Justice released a report titled, The President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

It contains multiple issues, but also persistent theme of keeping local law enforcement from actually enforcing some laws; specifically, immigration laws.

Key quotes:

“It is the view of this task force that whenever possible, state and local law enforcement should not be involved in immigration enforcement.”

“The U.S. Department of Homeland Security should terminate the use of the state and local criminal justice system, including through detention, notification, and transfer requests, to enforce civil immigration laws against civil and nonserious criminal offenders.”

“The U.S. Department of Justice should not include civil immigration information in the FBI’s National Crime Information Center database.

Another interesting quote:

“Law enforcement agencies should establish search and seizure procedures related to LGBTQ and transgender populations…”

Um… Ok — so a special set of laws for some people?

Who Are The Players
In the beginning of the report, there is a list who is involved in the task force.

The Co-Chairs are Charles Ramsey, Commissioner, Philadelphia Police Department and Laurie Robinson, Professor, George Mason University.

One would assume this task force would be filled with law enforcement types. That would be an incorrect assumption.

The other members are below:

  • Cedric L. Alexander, Deputy Chief Operating Officer for Public Safety, DeKalb County
  • Georgia Jose Lopez, Lead Organizer, Make the Road New York
  • Tracey L. Meares, Walton Hale Hamilton Professor of Law, Yale Law School
  • Brittany N. Packnett, Executive Director, Teach For America, St. Louis, Missouri
  • Susan Lee Rahr, Executive Director, Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission
  • Constance Rice, Co-Director, Advancement Project
  • Sean Michael Smoot, Director and Chief Counsel, Police Benevolent & Protective Association of Illinois
  • Bryan Stevenson, Founder and Executive Director, Equal Justice Initiative
  • Roberto Villaseñor, Chief of Police, Tucson Police Department

Teach for America??

What in the world is a Teach for America person like Packnett doing on a task force for policing??

Here’s why Packnett is there:

On the day of Brown’s shooting, Brittany Packnett, 30, the executive director of Teach For America in St. Louis, said she was giving her usual speech at a girl’s empowerment conference in Kansas City. But as she watched anger unfold in Ferguson — with young women and girls on the scene — Packnett realized that “telling girls to be leaders tomorrow wasn’t good enough — they needed to be leaders now.”

And so did she, Packnett said. Like Blackmon, she was appointed to the Ferguson Commission.
LA Times, ‘Women find their voice in Ferguson protest movement’

And:

“Working with the President of the United States of America is a critical step, but work must continue across the movement for us to secure justice for our children of today and tomorrow,” said Brittany Packnett, a St. Louis educator and activist.
– FergusonAction.com

And here, Packnett ties policing to our schools:

Problems of police brutality and racial profiling are closely tied to ongoing crises of education, health care and unemployment in the African-American community, says Brittany Packnett, executive director of Teach For America-St. Louis and a member of Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon’s Ferguson Commission.

“‘Ferguson has laid bare many systematic injustices that are present in urban communities of color and in suburbs,” she said. “Across the country, we know that low income people and people of color suffer disproportionately from certain injustices and that most of those injustices are highly interconnected.”
USA Today, Ferguson has become a springboard for many movements

The USA today article goes on to describe the Black Lives Matter campaign as being part of the “Occupy Wall Street Effect”.

It’s been noted in the past that Teach for America is more a political organization than teacher organization.  Having said that, I submit that the purpose of Teach for America is not to create a teacher workforce, but instead to use state and government funds to direct political agenda items from the top down.  This task force is a prime example.

Skeptical? Don’t miss the picture on page 80 of the report.

Flashback:  Black Lives Matter protests in Durham, NC at which Teach for America employees were integral part. A Teach for America worker bailed out the arrestees to the tune of an estimated $36,000.  WHERE DID THE BAIL MONEY COME FROM?

Posted in DOJ, Err What?, Government, LadyLiberty1885, Obama, Poltical Correctness, Racial Justice, The Articles | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

A Letter to @Instapundit on Higher Ed Lobbying and For Profit Colleges

This is a letter I sent in email recently to Instapundit about an article on Education lobbying and Higher Ed. While the piece was mainly on Higher Ed/For-profit schools, the ramifications for K-12 can’t be denied.  I felt it needed to be shared with a bigger audience, so I am publishing it here on my blog.


Dear Professor Reynolds, I hope you are well. I spotted this article and thought of the Higher Education bubble immediately: “The Disturbing Reason Higher Education Lobbying Groups Are Supporting For-Profit Colleges” The tug of war between getting public funds and accountability of higher ed institutions is not new, however, in this article those who were quoted all come from current or former Obama administration member. Some are now lobbyists being hired to attack for-profit colleges. It may look like straight up ‘fair share’ tactics, but there’s another side to this. Excerpt:

“The higher ed lobby doesn’t want any accountability—they want money, and they want money without limitations, without restrictions, without accountability to anybody outside the academy,” said David Bergeron, who served as Obama’s acting assistant secretary for post-secondary education before joining the Center for American Progress, a Democratic think tank that’s close to the administration. “What that has led to is very poor performance by our institutions—graduation rates are alarmingly low, and employers are becoming increasingly concerned that the employees they’re hiring out of the academy don’t have the knowledge and skills they require,” Bergeron said.

Note where Bergergon works now and his comment about skills and employees. This is not just about attacking for-profit schools on accountability, it’s about lining up workers and the system to provide them. It’s arguably about promoting Free community college. Community College needs to be expanded, because it is going to be overloaded by ‘Common Core graduates’. Center for American Progress has been a major supporter of Common Core. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has given Center for American Progress $6,448,809 million since 2009. Most of these grants are expressly for promoting Common Core, but a few are directed at Higher ed. Like this one in 2014 for $800,000:

“to improve the lives of low and middle-income Americans by developing and disseminating progressive policy ideas to improve postsecondary access, affordability, and quality”

​I don’t want to take up too much more of your time, but this excerpt is also worth noting:

The more likely motivation for the traditional schools is that it gives the lobby strength in numbers in challenging the administration’s other regulatory actions, said Amy Laitinen, a former higher education adviser in the Obama administration who is now at the New America Foundation. Traditional college groups are upset about, among other things, the tightened standards for credit hours, which determine how much student aid the U.S. awards to students. The Department of Education’s inspector general found that accreditors were allowing colleges to inflate credit hours, but the higher education lobby said the tightened standards will stifle distance-learning courses.

​New America Foundation is a frightening coalition formed specifically to influence legislation at the national level.​ They (New America Foundation) have an education policy arm. We live in bizarro world where a non-profit  like New America, (made up of politicians and policy wonks) which gets money from other non-profit groups tied to major for-profit groups in order to attack for-profit schools. I wrote about New America Foundation at the end of one of my Da Tech Guy articles, The Clinton Core Standards:

In addition to NCEE, another group tied to Hillary Clinton should be on the radar: The New America Foundation (NAF). NAF is a 501(c)3 that was started in 1999 by Ted Halstead and Steve McColl and whose board includes Jonathan Soros. After weeding through their site, the main purpose of NAF is to influence national Education policy at Congressional level; they’ve already spent millions on lobbying. NAF, while mostly politically focused and is indisputably a Left leaning organization, NAF also has formulated ‘education policy‘ goals. Some of the more visible backers include Bill Gates, George Soros and the Tides Foundation, Microsoft, Home Depot, Rockefeller, DISH Network, Google, Facebook, Arianna Huffington and the U.S. Dept. of State. Watch the “Welcome To New America” video. You won’t have to go far into it to see Mrs. Clinton. The clip of ‘former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’ promoting NAF comes right after Senator John McCain’s glowing testimonial. Stick around, you’ll see Van Jones too.

Thank you for your time, I hope what I shared wasn’t too incoherent as I am only on my first cup of coffee. – AP Dillon

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PR Firm EducationNC on Book Controversies: Parents, Let the Experts Decide

PR Firm, EducationNC, has a new article up by Ann McColl.  She harps on the policy of the schools as having the right to decide what your kid reads and sees at school.

Part of her argument that an approval or review process for texts is an undue burden on teachers. The sound you hear as you read the passage below is muted shrieking in the form of escalating hyperbole:

Is it enough for the teacher to give parents the titles of books? Independence and And Tango Makes Three don’t shout out what they are about. What exactly is the burden on the teacher to explain to parents in advance what the book is about? And what if the book is in the library? Do parents need to be notified of all books that are in the library on the chance that a student might choose the book to read during class time or that the teacher might use a book as a part of a lesson plan?

And if this approach makes sense as a rule for books, what happens to other supplementary materials? When the Supreme Court issues its opinion on gay marriage, can civic teachers share newspaper articles or web site analyses? Or must they send this information first to parents or go through some sort of committee approval process?

And let’s add one more thing. New teachers in North Carolina can only be employed on contract. Their contract can be nonrenewed for any reason that is not arbitrary, capricious, political, personal or discriminatory. Some may say this is a good thing – it holds teachers accountable, including for how they make choices around curricular materials. But if teachers don’t have constitutional free speech rights and they have very limited employment due process rights, what exists in the system to support teachers in being creative and innovative? In responding quickly to issues in their classroom?

Got that parents?
Your right to know what your kid is being exposed to is trumped by ‘free speech’ of teachers.

In a nutshell: Parents, you should let the ‘experts’ decide what your kids read and learn.

McColl misses the point entirely.
Schools are not parents. They are funded by parents and citizens. They answer to US not the other way around.

I left a comment:

What is totally unstated in this article is the lack of transparency by school systems and individual schools towards parents is driving these controversies.

As it stands right now in North Carolina, parents have to fight just to see basic materials being used in the classroom. When they do make such requests, many are treated to an meeting where they find themselves alone facing multiple representatives of the school.

Want to remove controversy like some of the examples in the article above?
Have every school maintain a website and every grade/class within the school have one as well.
All materials, books, testing information, calendars and resources that are to be used should be listed for parents to see and access prior to the school year kicking off.

Parents should have the final say about what their children learn. The school is the vehicle for education, not the ultimate gatekeeper of it.

Oh and by the way, Ms. McColl fails to mention that King and King is written like a fairytale and it deals with homosexuality. This was read to 8 and 9 year olds without parents knowing based on Omar Currie’s unverified claim of a bullying incident.

Coincidentally, Mr. Currie attended and presented at a “LGBT in The South” conference just weeks prior to the unverified ‘bullying’ incident. He presented alongside Efland Cheek’s Assistant Principal, Ms. Goodhand. Their presentation was about how to be an activist in the classroom using materials like the book King and King that Ms. Goodhand supplied to Mr. Currie. The presentation focused on “Disrupting Heteronormative School Cultures,”.
(Read more here http://wp.me/p14vwx-3v6)

So please, stop telling parents to let the ‘experts’ handle what our kids read.

 


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Posted in Education, LadyLiberty1885, Random Musings | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment