Truth in American Education (TAE) is a national, non-partisan group of concerned parents and citizens. We view educational issues from different perspectives; however, we are in agreement, that the promotion and implementation of elements of the Race to the Top (RTTT) policies are misguided and harmful. The Common Core State Standards (CCSS), CCSS assessments, and state longitudinal data systems development along with associated privacy issues are being implemented nationwide with insufficient research-based evidence and insufficient public examination and discourse.
TAE Advocates formed to share information, network with other individuals and groups with similar concerns, identify initiatives that are unnecessarily disruptive, experimental, and without fact-based support, and develop positions related to these issues in the educational interest of our school children The primary focus of TAE efforts is to ensure students succeed by receiving the full benefit of a quality educational experience based on their individual and developmental needs.
Four individuals formed TAE in early 2011 as an information network. American Principles Project pays for TAE web hosting and domain renewal. Annually the web hosting costs are approximately $100 and the domain renewal is $14.95. Other than this, TAE accepts no funds and has no funding source.
TAE is a true grassroots network. It is not a foundation, a non-profit, or an organization. TAE has no officers, no employees, no staff, no offices, and no expenses (other than web hosting and domain costs). TAE has no funds, no budget, no bank account, and no system in place to handle funds. TAE freely provides and shares available information within our extended network and to the public.
Truth in American Education
Truth in American Education (TAE) shines a beacon of light directly on the government’s behind-the-scenes efforts to drastically alter American education. As taxpayers, parents and concerned citizens, we believe that proper respect for the American people requires that major educational changes be subject to an open and public discussion prior to approval and implementation, not the other way around.
In particular, TAE focuses on the interrelated system of national standards, national curriculum and national testing connected to Washington’s Race to the Top (RTTT) program, although both the RTTT program and the proposed reauthorization of the original Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965, whose most recent reauthorization appeared as the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001, also presented historic changes in public education. The top-down mandates and billions of dollars spent according to the NCLB Act did little to benefit improved education results for all students.
Americans rightly have voiced these concerns that we address:
- Operating outside of the system of checks and balances that Americans rely on is dangerous to our freedoms. They are an affront to parents’ rights, the 10th Amendment and our tradition of local control over education.
- The mixing of public, corporate and foundation money without proper accountability is troublesome, as taxpayers contribute a significant portion of education funding.
- A one-size-fits-all set of national standards, curriculum and testing controlled by a few will affect us all.
- Impacts to public school, private school and home school education will be felt, as mandates increase and curriculum choices will diminish.
- Students are not widgets and require individualized learning. More top-down control is not in the best interests of educating individual students.
Truth in American Education provides information to parents, taxpayers, school board members, educators and legislators who are concerned about these issues. At the heart of it, the disposition of these issues will determine whether the federal government and elite, special interest groups have the right to form the hearts and minds of children and whether we will reject, or affirm, the concepts laid down by our founding principles.
Current information about the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI), CCSSI-related assessments, RTTT, privacy issues, state longitudinal data systems (SLDS), and the ESEA is provided for individuals and organizations to understand and to take action on behalf of our students.
The CCSSI is a major connecting thread tying the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), CCSS assessments, RTTT, SLDS, and ESEA together. The assessments developed by two non-public entities, the Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and the SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC), will assess the CCSS. PARCC and SBAC are funded with RTTT grant funds. RTTT criteria called for states to adopt common standards and implement longitudinal data systems. Student assessment data will be included in the state longitudinal data systems (SLDS). The reauthorization of ESEA/NCLB, A Blueprint for Reform, promotes the adoption of common standards and will require SLDS.
This four-minute video produced by the Heritage Foundation does an excellent job of highlighting loss of local control and other issues related to adoption of the CCSS.
CCSS Common Core State Standards
CCSSI Common Core State Standards Initiative
CCSSO Council of Chief State School Officers
ESEA Elementary and Secondary Education Act
NCLB No Child Left Behind
NGA National Governors Association
PARCC Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers
RTTT Race to the Top
TAE Truth in American Education
SBAC SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium
SLDS State Longitudinal Data Systems