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Media Coverage of Tampa Standards Hearing - FSCCC Quoted October, 2019

The October 17th stop on the Florida Department of Education's Listening tour was covered by WUSF before the hearing and afterwards by the Tampa Bay Tribune. FSCCC was quoted in both pieces. Below are some excerpts. Dr. Effrem's prepared remarks are available here.

WUSF - They linked to our list of national expert recommendations about how to move on from Common Core.

Opponents of Common Core say the new list of skills that students must master are moving in the right direction, although they insist more work remains.

Karen Effrem is the executive director of Florida Stop Common Core Coalition. She says this is not just a political exercise.

"There's certainly a political aspect to it," Effrem said. "But people that have followed this all along realize what an educational disaster Common Core has been."

She especially lauded Corcoran's new literature reading list as a step in the right direction. She said her coalition supporters also want to see more phonics and basic math equation skills, sooner.

"It's still a work in progress, but we're heading in that direction," Effrem said. "For instance, in the math requirement, the use of the standard algorithm in Common Core didn't start until fifth grade, which is about two years behind, when it should be [earlier] for high performing countries and states. It's now down to third grade, which is much, much better.
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Standards Listening Tour Announced October, 2019

The folowing stops on the Florida Standards Listening Tour for the Florida Department of Education to take public input on the standards has been released: Doors will open at 5:00 pm local time. All events will be held from 5:30-6:30 pm local time.

October 7, 2019, Sebring Middle School, 500 East Center Street, Sebring, Florida 33870

October 8, 2019, Winter Springs High School, 130 Tuskawilla Road, Winter Springs, Florida 32708

October 10, 2019, Alachua County School District Office, 620 East University Avenue, Gainesville, Florida 32601

October 14, 2019, John I. Leonard High School, 4701 10th Avenue North, Greenacres, Florida 33463

October 16, 2019, Collier County School District Office, 5775 Osceola Trail, Naples, Florida 34109

October 17, 2019, Jefferson High School, 4401 West Cypress Street, Tampa, Florida 33607

October 21, 2019, Liberty Pines Academy, 10901 Russell Sampson Road, St. Johns, Florida 32259

October 22, 2019, Hamilton County High School, 5683 US Highway 129 South, Jasper, Florida 32052

October 23, 2019, Walton High School, 449 Walton Road, DeFuniak Springs, Florida 32433

Provide specific input on proposed second draft of the standards.

What standards concern you, and what is your suggested replacement? - Take General Survey

Email us at StandardsReview@fldoe.org.

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FSCCC Releases National Expert Recommendations to Help Rid Florida of Common Core June, 2019

The Florida Stop Common Core Coalition is pleased to release nationa expert recommendations to help fullfill Governor Ron Desantis' wonderful Executive order 19-32 to "remove the last vestiges of Common Core in Florida."

The recommendations are available in two forms. First, they are available in stand-alone form as an executive summary and then in a more extensive document with background information and references. They are divided into recommendations that apply to both math and English standards and then those that are specific to each subject.

The Florida Stop Common Core Coalition is grateful to Dr. Sandra Stotsky, Dr. Mark Bauerlein, and Dr. Duke Pesta for their direct involvement and recommendations on ELA, as well as Dr. Louisa Moats for her seminal work on phonics and literacy education. We are also grateful to Ze'ev Wurman, Dr. Ted Rebarber, and J.R. Wilson for their direct work on the math portion of this document, as well as to Dr. James Milgram for his long and seminal work on math standards as a mathematician across the nation. Finally, we wish to acknowledge Emmett McGroarty's involvement and advice from a policy perspective.

These have been shared with officials at the highest levels of the Department of Education. While we appreciate the ongoing efforts and believe we are being heard, there is some danger of a rebrand repeat. This is most likely due to outside Establishment pro-common core read more

Media Coverage of Gov. DeSantis' Executive Order to End Common Core February, 2019

Here is a sample of the state and national/international media coverage involving Governor DeSantis' tremendous executive order to end Common Core, revamp testing and boost civics education, including several involving FSCCC:

Ep och Times: Florida Governor Plans Rollback of Common Core

Washington Examiner : Florida Gov. DeSantis puts Common Core out of our misery

Heritage Sentinel: Florida Gov. DeSantis Issues 1-Year Deadline to Eliminate All 'Vestiges' of Common Core

Education Week: Common Core Scrapped Under Florida Gov.'s Executive Order

TC Palm: End of Common Core: Florida Standards review expected to be costly, yet little may change

USA Today: Common Core: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wants new standards to eliminate vestiges of Core

Orlando Sentinel: Gov. Ron DeSantis seeks to ditch Common Core, find new academic standards for public schools

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Governor DeSantis Signs Executive Order to End Common Core in Florida January, 2019

Florida Ron DeSantis signed a executive order on January 31st, 2019 to end the use of the Common Core standards in Florida, develop new standards, streamline testing and expand civics teaching. Significantly, Commissioner Corcoran admitted that the current Florida Standards are Common Core rebranded. Here is video of part of the press conference and news coverage, followed by links to other media coverage involving FSCCC:
Orlando Sentinel:
Karen Effrem, executive director of the Florida Stop Common Core Coalition, said in an email her group was "thrilled with Governor DeSantis' great efforts to keep his campaign promise and finally listen to the frustrations of parents."

But she said she expected such a change won't be easy. "We also know that he will be up against a very entrenched corporate and political establishment that is very much in favor of keeping these standards. So we look forward to helping him fight that battle," she wrote.

Fort Meyers News Press

Karen Effrem, executive director of the Florida Stop Common Core Coalition, said she is expecting a mixed reaction to the governor's plan.

"I think parents are going to be thrilled because they are finally feeling like, hopefully, their concerns are being addressed and not just a dog and pony show and rebranding like has happened over the last several years," she said.

She said she is not so sure the educational community will fully support read more

FSCCC & 10 Other Florida Groups Seek Student Data & Psychological Privacy Protection from Congress April, 2018

A letter signed by over 100 organizations, both nationally and in 31 states, including 11 Florida groups led by The Florida Stop Common Core Coalition (FSCCC), called on Congress to rewrite the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).This letter to the House Education and Workforce Committee, these organizations strongly urged Congress to recognize that it is not the role or right of government to probe a child's most personal and sensitive attributes, as well as to protect the property interest that citizens have in their personal data.
"General education and labor databases should not be collecting and storing sensitive, subjective social, emotional, psychological and behavioral data," said Dr. Karen Effrem, a pediatrician, executive director of FSCCC, and president of Education Liberty Watch. "Psychological data related to behavioral, mental health, or special education concerns should be gathered after informed consent and treated with the same care and confidentiality as medical data, with appropriate sharing with law enforcement as needed under current statutes. If this had been done in the Parkland situation, that horrific tragedy could have been avoided."

"Personal data collection without consent is an affront to freedom," said Emmett McGroarty, senior fellow at American Principles Project and co-author of the new book, Deconstructing the Administrative State: The Fight for Liberty. "The federal government has no right or read more

Please Thank Members of the Florida Delegation that Voted Against the Disastrous Federal Omnibus Bill March, 2018

Despite the fiscal dangers and many upside down priorities, especially in education, Congress passed by a House vote of 256-197 and a Senate vote of 65-32, the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill that the president reluctantly signed.

Both Florida senators voted YEA. Please thank the following Florida members of the U.S. House that voted NAY:

Carlos Curbelo (R)

Ron DeSantis (R)

Matt Gaetz (R)

Al Lawson (D)

Brian Mast (R)

BIll Posey (R)

Darren Soto (D)

Daniel Webster (R)

Ted Yoho (R)
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FSCCC & Eight Other FL Groups Sign National Letter to Congress on Student Data Privacy July, 2017

FSCCC and eight other Florida groups signed a letter from national parent coalition of national, state and local organizations concerned about student data and psychological privacy after a recent U.S. House hearing on the topic. We are grateful to the nine participating Florida organizations:
Laurie Bartlett, President - The Florida Stop Common Core Coalition
Randy Osborne, Director of Education - Florida Eagle Forum
Meredith Mears, Debbie Higginbotham, Stacie Clarke, Co-founders - FLParentsRISE Randy Osborne Director, Nehemiah Project
Catherine Baer, Chair The Tea Party Network
Charlotte Greenbarg, President - Independent Voices for Better Education, Inc.
Randy Osborne, Director - Florida Government Watch
Keith Flaugh, Managing Director and Rick Stevens - Florida Citizens Alliance
John Nelson, Chairman and Bob Gilmore, Vice Chairman - The Highlands Tea Party
Joseph T. Doyle, MD, Director - Collier Citizens for Student Privacy and Safety
The following email was sent to the Education and Workforce Committee: Dear Chairwoman Foxx, Ranking Member Scott, Chairman Rokita, and Ranking Member Polis and the Education & Workforce Committee,

Thank you for holding the recent hearing on federal education research & privacy. Please see the following link to a national parent coalition letter containing the views, concerns and recommendations regarding student data and psychological privacy after the June 28th read more

FSCCC & Common Ground Testify to House Subcommittee on NAEP Proficiency Issue & Other Costs in HB 773 March, 2017

FSCCC and Common Ground testified about the very significant costs associated with HB 773 (SB 926) in the House Education Appropriations Subcommittee on March 28th , especially the devastating costs of the NAEP proficiency language. Video of the hearing is available HERE, with discussion of this bill beginning at 51:20. What follows are the prepared remarks of Dr. Karen Effrem, Marie Clare Leman, and Catherine Baer about different aspects of this very costly bill:
Dr. Karen Effrem (1:06:20)
Thank you Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. I am also with Common Ground and I am here to bring up a very important and what I hope is an unintended consequence of this bill.

According to the staff analysis and Amendment 1, this bill has a fiscal impact of $1, 247, 251 in recurring General Revenue funds to implement Section 2 of the bill. One of the major provisions of Section 2 is the cost for the effects of tying proficiency levels on the National Assessment of Educational Progress, also called the NAEP to Level 3 on the Florida Standards Assessment or FSA. We believe that this appropriation vastly under states the costs that will result. The NAEP only assess grades four, eight and twelve. This would require extrapolation of NAEP's proficiency levels to other grades, including educator and reactor panels and significant deliberation, which would incur significant costs.

However, these costs will pale in comparison to the recurrent read more

Thanks to You SB 926 is Postponed: Media Round-up March, 2017

Thanks to your great efforts, SB 926, the so-called "Fewer, Better Tests" bill that doesn't actually remove any tests, was postponed amidst a flurry of late-filed amendment that no one had a chance to read. Common Ground and individual members were featured prominently in several media reports. Here are some excerpts:

Allison Neilsen of Sunshine State News - Fate of 'Fewer, Better Tests' Proposal Uncertain After Senate Committee Shelves Bill

On the whole, SB 926 has been sharply criticized by parent groups and lawmakers, who have called the bill "useless."

"[The bill] does not truly eliminate any tests, so it's a big misnomer but even more concerning is language in it that ties proficiency on FSA to the NAEP," Florida Stop Common Core Coalition executive director Karen Effrem told Sunshine State News. It will actually do grievous harm and it will be hugely expensive in human and financial terms."

Sen. Tom Lee, R-Brandon, who sponsors rival legislation to actually eliminate some tests in Florida, agreed.

"That bill has great talking points, but if you read it, it does nothing," Lee has said. "It's very, very important that we have legislation that matches our talking points, and that when we go home and we say we did something to effect change, that we actually did that."

Opponents have also criticized SB 926 for tying Florida Standards Assessment cut scores beyond grade level proficiency by linking read more

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