2016 Dog and Pony Show

On March 22 the Kansas House of Representatives heard HB2292. This is the bill where Representative Grosserode took a comprehensive and outstanding bill (the “old” 2292) and turned it into a “do nothing” bill. (The “new” 2292.) There were many amendments heard. One of them was our amendment to replace the “new” 2292 with HB2676 and add an amendment addressing textbooks and AP/IB. If you’ll recall, the bill that we revised at the start of this session was 2676 and then it turned into 2292 (“old”).

Representative Houser took up the cause on the floor for this amendment and presented it. His willingness and professionalism in doing so is something we will not soon forget and are quite grateful for. We thank him and hope you will too.

Other representatives who voted “yea” for the 2676 amendment are Barton, B. Carpenter, Corbet, Davis, DeGraff, Dove, Fronfelter, Garber, Huebert, Hutchins, K. Jones, Kahrs, Kelley, Kelly, Lunn, Macheers, Osterman, Pauls, Peck, Read, Rhoades, Rubin, Scapa, Sutton, Weber, and Whitmer. Don’t be lulled or fooled here. Some of these people are the same people who voted to gut a good common core repeal five days earlier like Hutchins, Jones, Lunn, Machers, and Rhoades.

Despite Representative Houser’s efforts, the amendment, like all the other amendments presented, failed.

It is worth noting that there are a number of so-called conservatives who either sponsored the “old” 2292 or who voted to pass it out of the House Ed committee, but who subsequently failed to support (either by a “nay” vote or by not voting at all) the 2676 amendment that Representative Houser offered on our behalf. Speaker Merrick, Speaker Pro Tem Mast, Chairman Highland, Representatives Bradford, Bruchman, Estes, Hedke, Vickrey, Kiergerl, Clays, D. Jones, O’Brien, Goico, R. Powell, Rahjes, Seiwert, and Grosserode all failed to support the 2676 amendment.

When it came time to vote on the “new” 2292, Grosserode’s eleventh hour single paragraph “do nothing” bill, it too failed, despite the support of many of these same people as well as others.

From listening and watching the entire proceedings yesterday, it is clear that many of our elected representatives do not understand what is at stake. A number of democrats stepped up to oppose all parts of the repeal common core proceedings and offered their same, old, and flat out wrong ideas about common core and what is at stake. Very few so-called republicans stepped up to the podium to refute those claims or offer support of the 2676 amendment. For the most part, this caucus folded.

It is clear that leadership provided the grassroots, the parents, the people of Kansas, nothing more than a dog and pony show. They want it to appear that they “really tried hard” this time, but the truth is, there wasn’t much more from them than deception and agenda in an election year. It was like watching D.C. unfold and descend upon Topeka. Despite the thousands and thousands of you who have sent emails, signed petitions, made calls, showed up at rallies, and much more, you were absolutely not heard yesterday. You were barely even represented. If that doesn’t fire you up to replace representatives who act this way I don’t know what will. All House seats are up this year…opportunity is brewing.

So, the questions are thus: What do you want to do? What are you prepared to do? How are you going to do it?

We know exactly what we are going to do. The first two things that we are going to are:
1. Seek out truly conservative candidates to run against incumbent KS BOE members and many of these so-called republican representatives who miserably failed you, me, and our kids yesterday.
2. Continue to speak out. We will continue to inform people–all people–who these elected officials are and what they have done or failed to do.

The only way this is going to get solved is if we grow our numbers and get even louder and we find people to represent us who actually LISTEN to what we want and then do as we ask of them.

Thank you for YOUR support this session!

Did it just sound good?


Did Kansas really get out of Smarter Balanced yesterday?

We did some looking into this question after we received an email with the following comment that was posted on the article from yesterday:

It takes quite a bit of prodding to get CETE to admit it, but in the past they contracted out the writing of test questions to a third party. From 2006 until last year the vast majority of test questions (all but pilot questions that did not count in the score) were written by a California based company called West Ed. CETE put the questions into computer form and ran the computer system, but did not create the test questions.

Here is what we found on the WestEd website:

 WestEd is honored to serve as the Project Management Partner for the multi-state Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (Smarter Balanced) — the first collaboration of its kind building a common assessment system among a majority of states.

Read more here.

WestEd was the prime contractor developing all elementary, middle school, and high school assessment items for the state of Kansas assessment program.

Read more here.

Will KU CETE be partnering with WestEd for future Kansas assessments?

We will keep you updated as we learn more.

Other states have also “left” SBAC or PARCC, but still find themselves connected…

Utah Never Left the SBAC

Is Indiana’s withdrawal from PARCC for real or for show?

Kansas chooses KU CETE Assessments – withdraws from SBAC

Thank you_apple

In case you missed it…  THIS happened at the KS State Board of Education meeting yesterday in Topeka!

Kansas withdrew Tuesday from a federally funded, state-led initiative to develop tests aligned to the controversial Common Core mathematics and English standards, choosing instead to commission the tests from The University of Kansas.

After hours of in-depth discussion, the Kansas State Board of Education voted 8-2 to walk away from a years-long effort that Kansas played a lead role in — the Smarter Balanced state consortium that is developing Common Core tests with a federal Race to the Top Grant.

Please take a few minutes to send a THANK YOU to the KS State BOE members (emails below) who supported Kansas assessments through the KU CETE, and voted against SBAC at yesterday’s meeting.  We sincerely appreciate them taking the time to research this very important issue, and vote in favor of Kansas assessments from KU CETE.

Read more here: http://cjonline.com/news/2013-12-10/kansas-opts-create-its-own-common-core-tests

There were actually two votes yesterday.  Here are the results and the email addresses for the SBOE members.  Additional contact information can be found here: http://www.ksde.org/Default.aspx?tabid=54.

 1st Vote MOTION:  Mrs. Sally Cauble moves to accept SBAC for grades 3-8 and flexibility for high school level.

 No (to SBAC) – Mrs. Kathy Busch (kathy.busch@ymail.com), Mrs. Deena Horst (deena@worldlinc.net ), Mr. John Bacon (jwmsbacon@aol.com), Mr. Kenneth Willard (kwillard48@gmail.com) and Mr. Steve Roberts (mrxmath@gmail.com)

 Yes – Mrs. Janet Waugh (JWaugh1052@aol.com), Mrs. Jana Shaver (jshaver@cableone.net), Mr. Jim McNiece (nemprin@yahoo.com), Mrs. Sally Cauble (scauble@swko.net), Ms. Carolyn L. Wims-Campbell (campbell4kansasboe@verizon.net)

 2nd Vote MOTION:  Mr. Kenneth Willard moves that KS adopt tests designed by KU’s CETE for grades 3-8, with flexibility for high school.

 Yes (to KU CETE) – Mrs. Kathy Busch (kathy.busch@ymail.com), Mrs. Deena Horst (deena@worldlinc.net ), Mr. John Bacon (jwmsbacon@aol.com), Mr. Kenneth Willard (kwillard48@gmail.com), Mr. Steve Roberts (mrxmath@gmail.com), Mrs. Janet Waugh (JWaugh1052@aol.com), Mrs. Jana Shaver (jshaver@cableone.net), and Mr. Jim McNiece (nemprin@yahoo.com)

 No – Mrs. Sally Cauble (scauble@swko.net), Ms. Carolyn L. Wims-Campbell (campbell4kansasboe@verizon.net)


And in case you missed it, this also happened at the meeting:

State board approves handwriting standards
Topeka — The Kansas State Board of Education voted unanimously today to approve new standards for handwriting, including a statement that the board “expects” schools to ensure that all students can write legibly in cursive and be able to read material written in cursive.

John Boesen, a handwriting analyst from Salina, told the state board today that learning to write helps develop cognitive and motor skills, and that it is still an important form of communication.

 “The pen is mightier than the keyboard,” Boesen said.


And a big THANK YOU to every person who has taken time to research the facts, attend a State BOE meeting, speak at a State BOE meeting, contact the State BOE members,  and share the information with friends and family.

We can make a difference…. 3 minutes at a time!



Tomorrow: KS State BOE September Meeting

Tuesday, September 17 at 10am – KS State BOE Meeting

Please join us in Topeka for the KS State BOE meeting! View the September agenda.

If you would like speak in the open forum at 10:30am, please arrive before 10am to sign-up for 3 minutes. If you can’t make it in person, email your statement to kristin(at)kansansagainstcommoncore(dot)com by 5pm TODAY and it will be printed and presented at the meeting. You can also email your statement directly to the Kansas State BOE members.

Here is a great example of questions for the State BOE members:
New Hampshire State Rep Interrogates NH State School Board with These Questions

Over the last several months, citizens have addressed concerns about data collection, student privacy, and student/teacher evaluations related to the SBAC Assessments .  We plan to continue voicing these concerns, and request that Kansas pull out of SBAC and Common Core.    See you tomorrow!

120 SE 10th Ave., Topeka, KS
event details on facebook

Upcoming Event: State BOE meeting, July 9th

Tuesday, July 9th – Kansas State BOE meeting at 10am
Board Room of the Education Building, 120 SE 10th Avenue, Topeka, KS
Citizen Open Forum starts at 10:30am – arrive before 10am to sign up to speak for 3 minutes.
For more information visit http://www.ksde.org/Default.aspx?tabid=61 and view the July meeting agenda here.

Event information on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/events/320622641404697/