North Carolina Education updates this time around include a win for the Opportunity Scholarship program, a Sex Ed Sit-Out, and some legislative news.
Also, there are some very disturbing things coming out about data collection on our kids. I’ve included some of the relevant pieces at the end of this article.
First, in case you missed it, Wake County parents should be hopping mad.
The district has just hired a social justice warrior into their “diversity affairs” department. She’s from the education propaganda arm of the hate group, the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Read more here.
Protest plans are in the works. Stay tuned.
Court ruling upholding OSP program funding
A three-judge panel upheld that funding for NC’s Opportunity Scholarship Program does fall under the purview of the General Assembly to fund.
Here’s the PEFNC press release which lays out the ruling and has details on the program, which I have written about many times in the past.
Raleigh (April 9, 2018) – Brian Jodice, Interim President of Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina, released the following statement regarding today’s (Monday, April 9th) ruling by a three-judge panel that upheld funding for North Carolina’s Opportunity Scholarship Program as part of the state’s base budget. The panel ruled 2-1 including that the OSP provision “has no effect on the Governor’s recommend budget.”
“This is wonderful news for thousands of families in our state. Forward funding of the Opportunity Scholarship Program is crucial to its success,” said Jodice. “This law is constitutional and it is having a direct impact on the lives of families and children across our state every day.”
Earlier this year, Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina submitted an amicus curiae brief in litigation between Governor Roy Cooper and the North Carolina General Assembly. The brief, officially submitted on January 31, was filed in support of the statutory requirement that Opportunity Scholarship forward-funding is included in the state’s base budget. PEFNC’s Founding President Darrell Allison also filed an affidavit in the case; all documents are available here.
“We hope that Governor Cooper will move on from his political positioning on the Opportunity Scholarship Program and allow for low-income and working-class families in our state to continue to benefit from these critically important scholarship dollars. North Carolina is a national leader on education reform—let’s keep it that way,” added Jodice.
Established by state lawmakers in 2013, the Opportunity Scholarship Program provides low-income children with private school scholarships of up to $4,200. Just over 7,200 students currently use Opportunity Scholarships to attend over 400 nonpublic schools across North Carolina. In 2015, the North Carolina Supreme Court upheld the program’s constitutionality. In 2016, to meet anticipated demand, lawmakers voted to increase program funding by $10 million annually through the 2028-29 school year. In 2017, the General Assembly enacted the provision requiring that forward-funding for the program is included in the state’s base budget.
Sex Ed Sit Out – April 23rd
A grassroots movement of frustrated public school parents is turning their frustration into action. These parents want to end the sexualization of their children during class time. To achieve that purpose, they are holding a “Sex Ed Sit Out” protest on Monday, April 23rd, 2018. This protest was initiated by a few moms on social media who were troubled by the graphic nature of current sex education resources in schools. It has since grown into a global movement with protests being planned in the U.S., Canada, and Australia.
View the full set of updates via the Dept. of Public Instruction.
House Select Committee on School Safety has been meeting and the most recent presentations to the committee were ALL on mental health.
“Student Health Working Group met Monday, April 9 to focus on services that address the socio-emotional health of students. A number of presentations were given that covered a variety of school support services, all interconnected around the mental health of students.” – DPI
This is relevant as more information comes out about Parkland, Cruz and Broward County Schools:
Broward County juvenile justice division records, federal studies of Broward school district safety and the district’s own internal reporting show that years of “intensive” counseling didn’t just fail to reform repeat offender Cruz, who allegedly went on to shoot and kill 17 people at his high school. Records show such policies have failed to curtail other campus violence and its effects now on the rise in district schools — including fighting, weapons use, bullying and related suicides. (Real Clear Investigations)
A balance needs to be drawn; our schools are not mental hospitals. More counselors are fine, but let’s not turn our schools into hammers in search of nails.
View their website to see the latest draft report.
Quick Hit: Wasteful Spending By NC Districts
More here: Allotment-Specific and System-Level Issues Adversely Affect North Carolina’s Distribution of K-12 Resources (November 2016)
Student Data & SEL
Facebook is just one of the tech giants partnering with the U.S. Department of Education and schools nationwide in pursuit of student data for meddling and profit. Google, Apple, Microsoft, Pearson, Knewton, and many more are cashing in on the Big Data boondoggle. State and federal educational databases provide countless opportunities for private companies exploiting public schoolchildren subjected to annual assessments, which exploded after adoption of the tech-industry-supported Common Core “standards,” tests, and aligned texts and curricula.
The recently passed Every Student Succeeds Act further enshrined government collection of personally identifiable information — including data collected on attitudes, values, beliefs, and dispositions — and allows release of the data to third-party contractors thanks to Obama-era loopholes carved into the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act.
Parents like me have been warning about the data collection on our kids for years. Maybe we’ll get some attention now that we’re all finally seeing behind the curtain of the tech cults like Google, Facebook, and Twitter.
- WCPSS Enters into Digital Promise League Tied To Gates Foundation
- Do parents get the full digital education picture?
Additional Reading Suggestions
- Yo, @CollegeBoard: You’ll never guess how AP History Books are describing the election of Donald J. Trump
- Colorado Democrats overwhelmingly reject Democrats for Education Reform at state assembly
- NAEP Scores Stagnant After Years of Common Core
- Time for Feds To Come Clean on ‘Nation’s Report Card’ Tests