To be quite frank, I did not develop this idea on my own. I was asked whether I thought Jindal’s opposition to Common Core was sincere, and my response at first was “I don’t know, but does it matter?” My thinking being: whether or not Bobby Jindal opposed Common Core for the “right” reasons or for political reasons, was irrelevant. What mattered is that we had a former staunch supporter of the standards publicly recanting his position. I actually think this encouraged a lot of folks in the Anti-Common Core camp, and added to the nationwide movement and impetus to roll back or remove the standards across the nation. Which is great for folks outside of Louisiana, but most public school parents know we are still in a bind. At the end of the day, talk is cheap and therapy and tutoring for 700,000 Louisiana school children won’t be.

Jindal made some moves that seemed to indicate he had genuinely thought deeply about this situation (that he had put us in) and had a thoughtful plan for extricating us from it.

  • Jindal held press conferences denouncing Common Core as a Federal takeover of education
  • Jindal took numerous photo ops surrounded by opponents of Common Core
  • Jindal appointed Jane Smith, a staunch Common Core opponent (one of his three appointees)
  • Jindal (though his surrogates at DOA) declared the contract for the PARCC test invalid for not following proper laws and procedures (although DOA had previously reviewed and okayed this same contract.)
  • Jindal sent a letter to PARCC telling them he was pulling Louisiana out of the testing consortium (something he apparently didn’t have the legal standing to do.)
  • Jindal reduced John White’s purchasing power from 20k to 2 k without prior approval. (Meanwhile John White explained he’d actually been functioning under a 50k limit.)
  • Jindal originally refused to allow BESE to hire a lawyer/law firm to being suit against him (but did allow a law firm connected to LDOE, TFA, and Reformers to bring suit against him on constitutional grounds and allowed BESE to sign on as a party to this suit without repercussions for his other two appointed BESE members.)
  • Jindal appointed Jimmy Faircloth (a chief campaign donor who has never won a constitutional education case for the administration) to “defend” him from the lawsuit brought by Common Core supporters to allow Louisiana to purchase the PARCC test.
  • Jindal brought forth a federal lawsuit against the Obama administration over the constitutionality of Race to the Top funding tied to Common Core and PARCC testing in relation to a 17 million dollar grant Louisiana eventually one in the third round of RTTT

     

All of these things sound positive, but the net effect to date has been nothing but jawing on national television, more photo ops and newspaper stories, more lawsuits, and chaos in the classrooms and homes. Common Core is more entrenched in Louisiana than ever.

 

Sadly I have detected a waning in interest in Common Core forums among opponents. I’d diagnose this as a blend of fatigue, resignation, and perhaps a yearning for eventual victory that has sapped the life from folks and the movement locally. Many are waiting to see how this develops. I don’t blame them. I was watching too. I fear this that is exactly what Jindal’s opposition was intended to do. Jindal inserted himself at the head of the angry mob of parents and teachers opposed to Common Core. He took up our banner (but with what appears to be a rubber pitchfork) and has led us in direction after direction; telling us he has a plan; urging us to follow his lead.

 

He is leading us through blind alleys and into dead ends, folks.

 

I was warned something like this was going to happen numerous times by insiders. Here’s an excerpt from one person I received in April.

I’ve watched with interest this whole story about Common Core tests the last few days.  I have been on the inside of the political circle.  I would bet my life on this.  Bobby Jindal, John White, and Chas Roemer came up with this strategy months ago.  Saying Jindal wants out — but White and Roemer have to sign withdrawal allows Jindal to be perceived as far right — less federal oversight, etc. — poising him for his presidential campaign.   But it also keeps Common Core testing alive in Louisiana.

I’ve had numerous other conversations with different folks on the inside, but this one sums the situation up very nicely. Every day I fear more and more that they were right.

This isn’t just some random guy like me speculating . . . this is someone that works with these characters and knows how they work. So let’s examine some of the signals and moves that don’t make sense if you were really trying to eliminate Common Core, and not simply trying to make a lot of noise about eliminating it.

  • If Jindal really wanted out way back in April, when he first started making noise, why didn’t he talk to any of his handpicked and appointed legislators?
  • Why did Jindal wait until after the legislative session was completely over in June to hold his press conference about getting Louisiana out of Common Core?
  • Jindal has folks all over the legislature keeping an eye on bills and people, but anyone with a half hour and a black and white TV set could have seen the hundreds of parents being marginalized day after day while bill after bill to put the brakes on Common Core was shot down. The only indication that he was for any of these bills to remove Common Core were a few random support cards, but no one from his administration chose to speak or make a statement. In fact, even though those opportunities were offered to them they declined.
  • Unless I am mistaken (admittedly it’s been a while since I looked), every BESE member that is for Common Core (except maybe Walter Lee) received maximum contributions from the Jindal campaign in the last BESE election. 2 of Jindal’s 3 BESE appointees are adamantly for it. Why has Jindal not asked them to resign (and appoint two folks that would shift the tide 6 v 5 if swing voter Walter Lee could be brought on board); if he really believes Common Core is an unconstitutional federal takeover of education as he has asserted in his recent lawsuit against the federal government?
  • I think that last point should get two bullets, because. . . Seriously? Is he really keeping his appointees, Judith Muranti and Connie Bradford, onboard to represent his interests when he believes they are actively violating the Constitution of the United States and depriving Louisiana citizens of their Constitutional rights? And he wants to be President or even just a national figure??? You would think removing folks Jindal himself appointed on his state board of education, or even just calling for their resignation, would be a much more efficient and effective move than literally making a federal case out of this. It’s not like that would even be a new thing. Jindal did that before, with former Jindal appointee Tammie McDaniel, when she voted a way he didn’t like on a simple funding issue. But Jindal has said nothing and done nothing to his appointees violating the US Constitution and voting to sue him directly for violating Louisiana’s Constitution stating he has been disruptive and destructive. (He has of course, but his own appointees should not be saying that and retaining their positions if he is at all serious about his opposition to Common Core.) You would also think Jindal would have some influence over all the other members he donated to and brought to power.

     

But the truth is, even the federal lawsuit he is bringing is weak and destined to fail for three reasons:

  1. His case is weak
  2. His lawyer is weak
  3. His time is short

Plenty has been written about number 2, Jindal’s representation, Jimmy Faircloth. The fact that he produced not expert witnesses and rolled over in his last case on this issue should be documentation enough. (Not to mention he has never won a Constitution education case he’s represented Jindal on – not that that is ordinarily bad thing except here. . .) While Faircloth might not be the best lawyer if you want to actually win a case, no one can say he isn’t generous when it comes to kicking back [legally of course] some of his “earnings” to his favorite employer in the form of campaign contributions. (This is legal in Louisiana as long as no one calls it a “kickback” or demands a kickback and – and it just “happens” organically. . . I guess. . . of their own volition/common sense.)

So instead I will explore the other two items.

It’s not that the argument the Jindal administration is making a federal case out of is not firmly grounded for some states, but at this moment Louisiana is not really one of them. US DOE did unconstitutionally grant itself waiver powers to ignore the legally defined sanctions of NCLB in the form of ESEA waivers. These waivers were put in place by US DOE to supplant NCLB (No Child Left Behind) requirements. These were put in place without Congressional approval and Duncan has required the defacto adoption of Common Core (or a nationally recognized curriculum of which only Common Core qualifies) in exchange for relaxation of the NCLB requirements. The NCLB requirements were designed to be unattainable, requiring 100% proficiency of all students in all subgroups (Limited English, poor, disabled) by 2014. Some threats made by US DOE are that all federal funding would be withheld if the states don’t meet the impossible standards of NCLB, or the sanctions of NCLB (which can be financially crippling) and will be vigorously enforced. So states can choose to weather the NCLB sanctions which no states can avoid, or adopt Common Core and tie those tests to teacher retention policies and also adopt a bunch of other Reform friendly destructive crap.

By “waiving” the sanctions imposed by the NCLB law that Congress did authorize, Duncan removed the incentive and urgency for Congress to fix the problem built into NCLB that all states faced because NCLB was designed to be structurally impossible to achieve by anyone. When Congress chose to turn a blind eye to the constitutionally questionable ESEA waivers, what resulted was a ceding of all powers to set rules and guidelines for federal funding to the Executive branch (Arne Duncan), rather than the legislative branch of government.

This is why many informed opponents of Common Core consider it a federal mandate and takeover.

(When the mainstream media chooses to ignore this direct line of influence and control it feeds into the conspiracy theories and theorists. To tell you the truth, media that refuses to acknowledge this direct connection is really stupid (or thinks we are), willfully ignorant, lazy, or is actually a part of a conspiracy to spread Common Core propaganda.)

So what has resulted from the imposition of unattainable standards and the refusal of Congress to act to remedy the situation is a requirement that states adopt Common Core (nationally recognized standards of which there was only one by definition: Common Core State Standards), or else.

However Duncan’s interference did not end there. He also added this requirement to the billions of dollars allocated to RTTT (Race To The Top) grants. Louisiana would be in a much better position to make the case these standards were imposed upon them unconstitutionally if Louisiana rejected them (as Oklahoma has done) and was subsequently sanctioned by Arne Duncan (as has happened to Oklahoma). However because Louisiana’s state Board of Education (BESE) is endorsing them, and not stating they are doing so because of a concern about funding being yanked, Jindal’s case is weak. He could make it stronger by kicking his own appointees and replacing them with anti-Common Core appointees, and then perhaps working out an “understanding” with the swing vote BESE member, Walter Lee, who is facing multiple indictments for various financial improprieties. I can see an easy win there, and then a strong federal case to be made when Duncan slams some sanctions down on us.

The basis of the case for arguing the RTTT grants are unconstitutional will be tied to the determination of whether the Federal government can define national standards and curriculum, or whether those are sovereign rights left to the states. Some states that received very large grants in the first or second round of RTT (during one of the greatest financial downturns in our nation since the Great Depression might have a case they applied for and agreed to these grants under financial duress.) However the 17 million dollars Jindal complains about in his federal lawsuit is chump change compared to the more than 800 million dollars Louisiana receives from LDOE for agreeing to the waiver conditions set in conjunction with Arne Duncan. The ESEA waiver process is where Arne’s chokehold over education comes from. 17 million dollars is what we find in our couches every year trying to fill the billion dollars shortfalls Jindal “balances” our budgets with every year, but it is an issue for some states that won significantly more than 17 million dollars..

Even so, a Federal lawsuit is not the short-term answer and not one Jindal can follow-through on. Jindal’s term is up in a little more than a year and he can’t run for a third term (thank the Lord). Not one candidate for Governor in the 2015 gubernatorial race supports eliminating Common Core. The front-runner and most well-funded (and diapered) candidate, David Vitter, has changed his position from staunchly opposed to rabidly in favor of Common Core. (I’m assuming he changed positions after he found out who had all the money.) That means this lawsuit will not amount to anything except more money for one of Jindal’s best campaign donors (Jimmy Faircloth) more headlines for him, and more wasted money and hopes for Louisiana taxpayers and parents.

The BP oil spill happened in 2010. We know who was responsible and BP has acknowledged their responsibility. We know who was damaged. That tragedy happened at end of Bobby Jindal’s first term; 4 years ago, but we still do not have a final settlement for the State or lawsuit brought to trial for Louisiana. What are the chances this lawsuit concerning our very US Constitution will have any meaningful results in the next year?

Will we wait 4 years for this to be resolved? How many Louisiana Governors will be have to go through before a settlement is reached?

That is what Common Core supporters (whom I must now re-include Bobby Jindal as) want. They want a full generation of our children to experiment on to see if Common Core works (even though the early results show abysmal failure.) But don’t worry, parents. I’m sure the next big education plan will be right around the corner for your kids’ kids. Maybe they will be more successful at taming the Educational Industrial Complex than we were?

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44 thoughts on “Why do I think Bobby Jindal is scamming us with faux Common Core lawsuits?

  1. Why look a gift horse in the mouth?

    The biggest danger of Jindal jumping on-board is the hard left jumping off.

    “Bobby Jindal launched a federal lawsuit against President Barack Obama’s administration over Common Core this week, and The Washington Post’s editorial board wrote, “… sadly Mr. Jindal seems more intent on burnishing his conservative credentials for a presidential run than in serving the interests of students,”

    So now both the NOLA and Washington Post editorial boards have come out ‘for common core’.

    Sigh !

    This issue has to be won in the court of public opinion. The courts are glacially slow and notoriously corrupt. They will still be deciding what court is to hear the issue ten years from now.

    ——–
    P.S. The oil spill does not make a good example. BP ponied up multiple-millions of dollars immediately to both mitigate the situation and make people whole. Because of this response, a ‘lawsuit brought to trial’ was completed before we got out of bed.
    http://www.deepwaterhorizonsettlements.com/KeyDates.aspx

    P.P.S. In the Federal case, BP pled guilty on January 29, 2013 and was sentenced to pay $4 billion in fines and penalties.
    http://www.justice.gov/criminal/vns/caseup/bpexploration.html

    1. The BP claims I am referring to are the State ones, which Bobby Jindal is in charge of resolving, just as he is trying to insert himself into the Common Core dispute.

      Incidentally Jindal has taken the unusual step of actually undercutting his own case just last June. (Unusual in the sense that it seems to negatively impact his case, completely ordinary and expected for Jindal in that it satisfies some potential donors for his presidential run at the expense of Louisianans. . .)

      http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2014/06/06/bobby-jindal-signs-bill-to-block-lawsuits-against-oil-and-gas-companies

      1. New laws cannot eliminate a vested right. So I think the articles claims are a bit over broad.

        I didn’t follow this bill, but God bless them, they debated the ‘retroactivity’ clause heavily in the Senate and removed it.

        This helped us out on HB527. While the Senate Committee initially blew off our testimony, Senator Claitor eventually agreed. He got the bill delayed using the Mangus? Clause.

        Then he took out the retroactivity clause from the bill.

        Then at the conference committee to resolve the House/Senate disagreement – they decided to also pull out the redundant text which contained the ‘hidden snake’ (legislative term for the deceptive part of the bill)

      1. Where is the opposition coming from now? Who is pushing the standards now? Lee school board just rescinded their rescinsion of common core standards on a 3-2 vote.

        Who pressured them?

        1) Who are the two fisted, red shirted saluters in the audience ? (Parents it seems)

        2) Florida school board association threatened not allowing graduation.

        Who else was pushing then and what money threats were made?

      2. Your welcome. We can’t expect the courts to resolve this issue. The La State courts are glacially slow, catastrophically expensive and emotionally toxic.

        We have to win over the parents, teachers and flip the school board decisions !

          1. Not entirely. The locals are the best pressure group to push BESE. The local school boards are all up for election right now. 🙂

            1. They are but not enough candidates are running that oppose Common Core. The sanctions BESE can heap on them are too severe. We have districts opposed to CC already and their hands are tied as well. Resolutions won’t impact BESE one bit.

              1. By showing that it is an election issue with teeth, the BESE board, being up for election in a year or two, will fold.

                The School Board candidates, not having direct control over the issue, and not wanting to unnecessarily alienate voters will try to dodge on taking a position.

                The key is to raising the issue as a key issue in the elections and getting the candidates to take a position on it.

  2. I don’t think Jindal vs White and Roemer is a farce. I think Jeb Bush is behind Roemer and White. I think Jindal is trying to position himself to run against Bush in the primary.

    I also think these three know each others’ secrets, and that is why Jindal threw the injunction on the testing contract. Faircloth is bland, but I think that was Jindal’s doing to not have experts on the stand.

    As for the BESE appointees, he can appoint but not remove. He also was able to get White in, but that was with Jeb Bush’s help in bankrolling the BESE race.

    I watched Roemer at the July 1 BESE meeting, how intensely he went after Kristy Nichols when she spoke on DOA auditing procedure, and I am not convinced his needling her was an act. Frankly, I don’t think he’s that talented an actor. Roemer has Jeb Bush behind him and has made his own back door agreements regarding LA education– and it is connected to business and charters and CCSS/testing.

    White has to stick it out because he must guard the disaster that he has made of LDOE; plus, he is in the position of fall guy for any underhanded arrangements concocted by Jindal, Roemer, and himself.

    As for the federal lawsuit, Mary Fallin needs to sue USDOE.

    1. I disagree but I’ve made my case. Why would Jindal not want experts on the stand?

      Jindal pursued and got Tammie McDaniels resignation. I don’t agree with him for doing it, but it is a precedent. Now not a peep. Not his modus operandi.

      Jindal is not a blip on any screen. No one wants another Bush. Jindal is just trying to get noticed.

      White and Chas smell like roses to reformers for their efforts.

    2. They don’t have to act very different just act in their normal roles. Jindal just repeated talking points when he was for it, all he had to do was add it to his pre-existing “I hate Obama I hate federal control” spiel. Nichols has a way of getting under anyone’s skin and I hear many people hate Chas personally, even though they work with him, so I doubt the fireworks were faked.

  3. Yes, I’ve noticed that the common core forums have dwindled down to almost nothing and I am sensing that the anti-common core forces(to which I belong)) have splintered into a bunch of small armies each fighting their own battles, while the pro-common core side is strongly united. What the heck happened to our side? Let me remind people that DIVIDE AND CONQUER leads to DIVIDE AND RULE.

    1. Yep. I think the divided us and wore us out. We were a decentralized coalition and they were backed by billions of dollars and backed by thousands of full time employees. There’s only so long you can spend all your free waking hours on this. I am trying to alert people to the very real possibility that this is all just a delaying tactic to divide us up and wear us out.

    2. You add legitimacy thru supporting facts to what I sense on a gut-level intuitively. The furtive glances captured in media of John White and Chas Roemer tell a story. The look of relief in White’s eyes despite his opened-collar “Hey, I’m one of y’all” performance in the Sentell Advocate piece on Common Core sings the same song. “The heart don’t lie,” even when our words do.

    3. Teachers donned their raingear despite the heat and mugginess. School board elections are forecast to make landfall in November. NOAA forecasts a turbulent spring. In other words, people are watching… And thinking… And preparing.

  4. Here we go again, wasting our time speculating on what games are being played by whom. Politics is all a game. Politicians are once again laughing all the way to the bank about the public thinking this has anything to do with caring one way or another about the public interest.

    Whether it be Jindal vs BESE, Jindal vs White, Jindal vs federal government, Jindal vs Bush, it doesn’t really matter. It’s simply Jindal, White, BESE, against the good of the next generation. The more power and money they stockpile, the more they do not have to interact with the masses. After all, they have minions who pretend to do that.

    1. Lol. What do you propose? I am laying out some realities here that people need to understand, regardless of the speculation. Jindal’s lawsuit will not work at removing Common Core from Louisiana. Agree or disagree?

      1. I agree it will not remove Common Core from Louisiana. I’m afraid nothing will. The train has left the station regarding education in this country.

        I agree social media gets the word out to some. I am old and old-fashioned in that I prefer eye contact and listening while the other is speaking, but alas, that has gone the way of Mayberry.

        Since our society continues to evolve, so must the formalized education system. Education must prepare the younger generation for a world that does not yet exist. One of the purposes of education has been to pass on the values we cherish and to prepare the next generation to create their own world and flourish in it.

        The Common Core standards are not designed to have students think their own thoughts and come up with original ones. They were designed by people who say no one cares what anyone else thinks. I’m almost afraid that is close to the truth in today’s society. We take selfies, tweet what we are doing, and spout whatever we want online, regardless of others’ feelings.

        My perfect education system? Teaching kids to think and problem solve and to care about others.

        1. Trains are funny things. It takes a lot of hard work and coordination to lay the tracks and build the engine. One person in the right place at the right time can derail them. Trains can’t dodge; they are inflexible and predictable. The real question is, what do you replace them with to not leave people stranded.

    1. I disagree Jason. Opposition to CC has not weakened for those of us serious about saving public ed for all children but most of all for those who need it most. Jindal is creating the noise right now while we strategize. Negative vibes don’t affect me anymore but disparaging commentary are powerful for many. I wouldn’t expect Jindal to do to Miranti and Bradford what he did to Tammy in the way he acquired her resignation. We are in a different place. Jindal is playing this to his best advantage which means keep whipping the cream til it turns to butter. His actions have stirred up White ‘s questionable activities and I don’t believe they can be shoved under the rug at this point. White ‘s BESE BFFs are complicit and are digging their own graves. Jindal doesn’t need to dump anybody himself. Parents hold the key to ending the use v of high stakes and that is the REAL enemy and tool of destruction here. Real simple solution is opting out this spring. If White ‘s bogus SPS scores fall because of that then Supts need to step up and intercede. They have been too compliant. We need the heroes we have met from other states. If parents don’t do the right thing for their own children then they can’t blame teachers and schools anymore.

      1. White appears impervious from where I’m watching. The cameras are allowing him to play up his “can’t we all get along for the children shtick” to the hilt. No real sanctions of any duration or substance. His TFA peeps are partying like White is Prince and it’s 1999. The Faircloth fiasco and federal lawsuit are just ways to drag this out for the next year till he departs and the next gov nixes it. If the presidential campaign fails you can be sure Jindal will come back (after sitting out a term) and keeping his fictitious CC opposition in his back pocket as an issue.

        I don’t fault parents one bit for backing off a bit to get on with their lives, but I have seen it. I see it in Facebook forums and traffic to my blog and the comments being made to me in email, online and privately. I don’t see opting out working but I won’t discourage it. I saw parents ridiculed and marginalized in the last session. It was an affront to our Democracy in my opinion, but it happened. I will keep the pressure on Jindal to produce or continue to question his commitment. As long as everyone heaps praise on love on him and doesn’t hold his feet to the fire he will never take the necessary steps to produce relevant local results.

  5. The effect of the “double waiver” option that many other states have used is a a opt out of the “coercion” to use common core, and makes their point about manipulation of grant dollars moot – in my humble opinion. Our waiver has lapsed…also making their point moot.

  6. Well, Folks, I have “egg on my face.” I must acknowledge I gave Jindal the benefit of the doubt despite the warnings from many friends and colleagues. I wanted to believe Jindal’s efforts were sincere. However, the actions of his attorney, as reported by the news media, leave me “scratching my head.” Why would he not present evidence or, at the very least, secure experts to testify regarding the procurement laws/PARCC (PEARSON) contracts? Again, if Jindal is aspiring to a national level, he blew it! I know many folks will agree with me. The continuous losses in the courtroom certainly do nothing to demonstrate leadership. Why do we continue to engage in lawsuits with little or no success? I will admit that Jindal has the opportunity to convince me that I am wrong. If he succeeds at demonstrating his sincerity, I will then publicly acknowledge that I stand corrected! Not until!!

    1. We keep complaining about the TOP DOWN mandates of education policy but then expecting we can beat it from the TOP DOWN. I can’t waste my time with the politics of this battle or trying to win it politically. We have NO CONTROL over that.

      This has to be won by proving that this is educationally unsound, oN THE TRUE MERITS. Both White and Jindal are HELPING us do that by doing things like illegally manipulating test scores, school performance scores, lying about data, lying about failing charters, lying about Eureka math and the PARCC contract etc. Jindal has opened this up to legal scrutiny and investigation. All this will reveal beyond a shadow of a doubt to the press that CCSS and faux reform are BAD! All else is vanity!

      EDUCATORS like you Lottie have to stand up and speak out. Superintendents who do not challenge White’s bogus mandates are COMPLICIT and turning their backs on their teachers and students!!! It is time for them all to show up at BESE and say NO. Tell the truth. This above all is my greatest disappointment and frustration.

      1. I don’t think it will be beaten from the bottom or with facts. We’ve been waging that war unsuccessfully for years without anything to show for it. We have to wrest control from them and educating people will allow us to do that. This is a multi-pronged coordinated effort by Reformers and privatizers. It will take the same kind of response to defeat it.

  7. Jason, I agree with your assessment of BJ and the faux CC lawsuits. I posted the previous comments before reading your blog. Using an age-old adage, “you hit the nail on the head!” You make your point clearly and concisely. Perhaps, Jindal should have consulted with you and Dr. Schneider before the cases were heard. I realize Dr. Schneider disagrees with your assessment relative to Jindal’s lack of sincerity; however, she would have been a viable resource to the governor’s case regarding the procurement laws/PARCC/PEARSON/and Data Recognition Corp. She has conducted extensive research on the subject. If there is a next time, perhaps someone should tell BJ.

  8. Lottie, you are absolutely the Best . It is sad but should not be surprising to see another Louisiana Politician preying on the Citizens and Voters of Louisiana especially at the national level for personal political and party gain ………… I once thought Highly of Mr. Jindal ….. This entire post is most interesting ……

  9. The interest is waning, because teachers are padding grades with very easy assignments based on the “old” way of teaching. To many parents, the bottom line is grades, and they are blind to just how destructive this way of learning really is. For example, my daughter, an honors student (grade 7) has made all “A’s” since kindergarten and was identified as profoundly gifted. Since she’s started taking the LEAP/ILEAP in grade 3, she’s done very well , always scoring advanced in ELA and Math, and mostly advanced with a couple of mastery scores in Science/Social. This year, I can honestly say she is learning nothing in math…. NOTHING…… She currently has a “A,” but if that grade were based solely on the CC tests she’s taken, without help, she would be struggling to maintain a “C” average. The teacher allows students to take home tests and “fix” them before grading them. She also assigns easy work like color sheets that require the students to do easy problems. These assignments hold the same weight as test grades. My daughter is besides herself because she just doesn’t “get” the new way of testing/learning. I mean, the child, who has always loved school, now hates it. For her, it’s not about the grades she is assigned, but the fact that she is just not getting CC. Heck, my husband and I are both well educated, and we don’t get it either! I am so frustrated, that I am enrolling her in the virtual school in hopes that we can find enrichment programs that will help her to continue to excel.

  10. Does anyone know if I can send an open records request to try to determine if the teachers in my parish have been told that they are not allowed to publicly state that they disagree with the CCS?

    1. You can try. You need to send to the custodian of records at the school board. There is a section of legalese you need to include with your request. I will find it and post it here later. of course they may lie or refuse to answer and then you would have to file a suit.

    2. Dear Custodian of Public Record(s):
      Pursuant to the Public Records Act of Louisiana, R.S. 44:1 et seq., I/we request the following public records be made available for inspection and/or copying:
      [List either specific document(s) you are requesting or if you don’t know, describe the information you are requesting as specifically as possible.]
      Under the provisions of R.S. 44:32, if you raise a question as to whether the record requested is a public record, you are required to notify in writing the person making the request of your determination and the reasons, including the legal basis, therefor. Said notice shall be made within three days of the receipt of the request, exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays.
      Under the provisions of R.S. 44:33, if the public record is not immediately available you are required to certify this in writing promptly, and in your certificate fix a day and hour within three days, exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays, for the exercise of the right granted in the Public Records Act.
      Under R.S. 44:34, “If any public record applied for by any authorized person is not in the custody or control of the person to whom the application is made, such person shall promptly certify this in writing to the applicant, and shall in the certificate state in detail to the best of his knowledge and belief, the reason for the absence of the record from his custody or control, its location, what person then has custody of the record and the manner and method in which, and the exact time at which it was taken from his custody or control. He shall include in the certificate ample and detailed answers to inquiries of the applicant which may facilitate the exercise of the right granted by this Chapter.”
      If you are invoking R.S. 44:34 to deny this request, please answer the following questions in detail.
      1. Is a copy of the requested public record usually located in your office?
      2. Why is your copy of the requested public record absent from your office?
      3. Where is your copy of the requested public record?
      4. Who has received your copy of the requested public record?
      5. How and from whom did the present custodian gain control of your copy of the requested public record?
      6. What was the exact time your copy of the requested public record was taken from your custody and control?
      7. When will your copy of the requested public record be returned to your office?
      8. Is there any other public official who has a copy of the requested public record?
      9. State the name or names of anyone who has a copy of the requested public record?
      10. State the location(s) where the requested public record can be viewed.
      11. State the hours and dates when the requested public record can be viewed.
      Penalties for violating the Public Records Act include criminal prosecution

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