Call Your Senators Today: “No” on Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 (ECAA)

“No man’s life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session.”
― Mark Twain

And neither are our children.

Following hard on the heels of Independence Day, Congress is once more intent on denying Americans their liberty. This time it’s parental and local control of the education of their children.

Today, July 7th, Senate Bill S.1177 – Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 (ECAA), will be voted on in the Senate. ECAA, the brainchild of Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA), has been touted as a rewrite of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) the educational boondoggle passed in 2001.

Under pressure to get the highly unpopular NCLB legislation reauthorized,  Republican leadership caved to Obama’s demands and agreed to language which expands, not reduces, the influence of the federal government over schools.

American Principles In Action has released a list of 21 fatal problems with ECAA: The Every Child Achieves Project – A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing: No Child Left Behind Rewrite Will Drive A National Education Agenda. I remind you there are no less than three federal laws prohibiting a national curriculum, but that hasn’t stopped Congress, Obama, and Erne Duncan from doing an end run around the law. Here are only a few of problems:

5. ECAA adds to the list of federal program a state must consult in developing its plan and requires standards to be aligned with federally approved workforce and early-childhood standards…

8. ECAA contains a requirement for states to “demonstrate” that the state standards are “aligned” to the same criteria used to establish Common Core….Any prohibition included to stop USED from coercing states to use Common Core is meaningless…

14. ECAA removes protection against socioemotional profiling in the statewide assessments (eliminating NCLB’s prohibition against including assessment items that “evaluate or assess personal or family beliefs and attitudes”) and fails to protect against other psychological data-gathering in any other federal education program covered by ESEA.

Call your Senators today and tell them to vote “No” on S.1177, the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015. http://www.senate.gov/senators/contact/.

Erin Tuttle has more analysis at The Danger in the Details of the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015. Phyllis Schlafly, America’s maven of education, as always cuts to the chase with her common sense and plain speaking: GOP to give Obama more power — again?

Not to be outdone by the Senate, Breitbart reports that the House will consider its companion bill, H.R. 5, The Student Success Act (don’t you just love these Orwellian titles?), again this week after being pulled in February because of lack of support. More information on H.R. 5 here and here.

The Capitol switchboard number is 202.224.3121 or go to the following directories:
http://www.house.gov/representatives/
http://www.senate.gov/senators/contact/

Truth In American Education twitter: https://twitter.com/TruthinAmEd

American Principles In Action twitter: https://twitter.com/apaction
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The video features Dr. Sandra Stotsky, is one of the members of the Common Core validation committee who refused to sign off on Common Core standards. She has written and testified about Common Core.

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Safely Home

I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love babies and children. From my first days of babysitting to college and volunteering with autistic children and working part-time in the church nursery, and later taking care of professors’ children on weekdays and weekends, I loved little ones and looking at the world through their exploring eyes of wonder.

MGerber baby

Before I had children of my own, I knew I wanted to stay home with them. Children learn the most from the one who spends the most time with them. That’s an undeniable fact. What children learn of love and trust and relationships, and how they grow in their understanding of the world comes primarily from whomever is there with them. Motherhood can be draining and frustrating, but that is countermanded by its serendipity of delight in “Look, Mommy!” and “Hey, Mom, guess what?” and the dailiness of love, joyful chatter, and hugs. Children are not only a stewardship given to us from God—children are also a gift from God.

My children are grown now, and the weekend before Mother’s Day, we welcomed our first grandchild into the world. Above she is slightly bemused as her mommy photographs her through her crib bars, and here she is with sweet dreams.

MAsleepSmile

When I look at my children and see their character, their love for each other, their kindness and integrity, their accomplishments, and their perseverance in the face of difficulty, I am grateful to God. Now they are grown. My life’s work has been to teach them the course that goes safely home.

“…may you see your children’s children.”

When I look at my little granddaughter I am grateful to God. She is brand new, yet with her birth and the beginning of the next generation, she is a marker in my marathon of being a mother:
“Thus far the LORD has helped me.”

Children are a blessing.

Discussing Marriage: Developing A Real-Time Apologetic

Iron sharpens iron,
So one man sharpens another.
Proverbs 27:17

I find that I always go through a learning curve when my beliefs and thinking are challenged. As a new Christian I developed my own explanation and reasons for my beliefs, and several years ago I realized I was in the process of developing another apologetic, but this time it was an apologetic for marriage: reasons why marriage is between one man and one woman.

Question markAn apologetic grows swiftest and strongest in real-time challenges as you are faced with questions or objections. Read, research, and refine your thinking in the midst of iron sharpening iron discussions, and your ability to stand firm and reason will develop a tempered edge of clarity.

When fumbling a question, my first step has always been to learn more about what I believe and why I believe it. Another proverb says, “He who walks with wise men will be wise,” and so I turn to those who have thought about an issue, and I read them. I look at more than one person, because each has his own perspective and may develop a facet not given weight by another.

Book, OpenI think about what I’ve read, and do my own analysis. Does this idea make sense? Is it clear? Which arguments are the most cogent and concise? What do I think needs further explanation? How do these points fit together? Which points should be emphasized? What are the major issues? What do I disagree with? What do I find helpful or challenging? Is there something I’ve overlooked or that shows a weakness in my own thinking? What’s my short answer to a question? What’s my detailed answer? Compare, contrast, and draw conclusions.

I talk about what I’m thinking and reading with those whose opinions I value, and gain from their insight. I ask what questions and objections they’ve encountered, and what their answers are.

Talk sign.svgI also keep talking with those who disagree with me, because my goal is not only to explain and defend what I believe about marriage, my goal as I work to answer questions and objections is to persuade others why marriage is between one man and one woman.

That’s not to say everyone will listen. There are those who give a fair hearing and discuss the issues and consequences, and others simply want to shout you down. I’ve had to learn discernment as to when I’m casting pearls before people whose intent is to rend and tear to pieces.

The discussion doesn’t always go perfectly or smoothly. I’ve been through this ongoing process in talking about abortion and why I’m pro-life, and like abortion, marriage is a heated debate. There is risk. I’ve fumbled. I’ve felt outmaneuvered and inadequate. Of paramount importance, however, is not keeping silent until we’re perfect, but in speaking out now. The marriage debate has lasting consequences for us, for our children, and for the future of society.

We each live in different circumstances and have different spheres of influence. It’s not so much whether or not you have a large platform, but that you use the platform you have. Stella Morabito keeps this quote from Vaclav Havel at the top of her homepage.

. . . his action went beyond itself, because it illuminated its surroundings, and because of the incalculable consequences of that illumination.

If you don’t know where to start, in my next post I’ll share with you things to read that I’ve found helpful in building a foundation for a marriage apologetic. The list will include some items that are succinct, and others with more detailed thinking, but I’ve found all of them to be profitable.

Super Bowl XLIV and “The Rest Of The Story”

In 2010 a Super Bowl ad angered the Left before it was even aired because Pam Tebow would be in it with her son, Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow. Why? You may remember the background to the ad: Pam and her husband Bob had been missionaries in the Philippines when Pam came down with amoebic dysentery and went into a coma. Medication was given before the doctors were aware she was pregnant. It was stopped, but she was still advised to abort the baby because doctors thought the baby had already been harmed by the drugs she had been given and that she herself might not survive the pregnancy. Pam refused to have an abortion, and the baby, Tim, was born in August 1987, not only healthy, but a baby who grew up to win the Heisman.

Well, the ad ran—an interview with Bob and Pam Tebow was online—and the ad was funny and sweet and Pam’s “miracle baby” Tim was there being a pro-life ad by his very existence. Thanks to the publicity given to it by the Left millions knew about the ad ahead of time and were waiting to see it.

I thought you might be interested in this follow-up to the ad! Thursday morning at Jill Stanek‘s site I found a video and a link to A Super Bowl Blessing at Focus On The Family.

Five years ago, Susan went to a friend’s house to watch the Super Bowl. She was pregnant, scared and alone. That night, she watched Focus on the Family’s commercial featuring Tim Tebow, and her life would never be the same….

Continue reading

Conservative Leaders Testify On IRS Targeting Because Of Beliefs

US Capitol West FrontToday the House Ways and Means Committee heard testimony from leaders of groups targeted by the IRS for their personal beliefs.

Here is the list of witnesses with links to their written testimony.

Witness List:

  • Mr. John Eastman, Chairman, National Organization for Marriage, Testimony
  • Ms. Dianne Belsom, Laurens County Tea Party, Testimony
  • Ms. Becky Gerritson, Wetumpka Tea Party, Testimony
  • Ms. Karen Kenney, San Fernando Valley Patriots, Testimony
  • Mr. Kevin Kookogey, Founder and President, Linchpins of Liberty, Testimony
  • Ms. Sue Martinek, Coalition for Life of Iowa, Testimony

Everything I’ve read today about the testimony of leaders of these targeted conservatives groups proves how right the Obama administration was to fear them. They’ve shown their integrity, their intelligence and their courage. Continue reading