Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Commit2Dallas: Dan Branch and Common Core


May the Lord cut off all flattering lips,
And the tongue that speaks proud things,
Psalm 12:3

Commit2Dallas is an 'educational non-profit' that brings together over 100 crony capitalists 'civic leaders' across Dallas County.  The objective is to get big business working with big government to promote 'educational objectives.'  Commit2Dallas is clearly aligned with the Common Core philosophy.

For example, Commit2Dallas embraces 'cradle to career':
You must learn to read before you can read to learn. Mastering basic math and science lays the groundwork for future problem solving in a 21st-century economy. And being prepared to take advantage of a quality education beyond high school is essential for obtaining a position in our increasingly skilled workforce. In short, education is a continuum. We call this concept the Cradle to Career Pipeline.
In reality, 'Cradle to Career' is about giving bureaucrats the final say in your child's education:
This is a complete mandated federal educational program, cradle through workforce, in all subjects, all grades, all schools, daycares, preschool, K-12, college, with personal child and parent data being collected and stored and shipped around government agencies and certain corporations -- without your knowledge and consent. [Emphasis in Original]
 Mary Bowen has more:



Commit2Dallas is also determined to 'measure what matters':
The Commit! Partnership believes that using data as a constructive tool is essential to better serve every child in our community. Rather than using data to generate competition or place blame, we use data to improve our efforts continuously and collectively. In fact, the only time we single out a partner is to lift up a practice that is proving effective for students and that merits greater attention across the Partnership.
As Jane Robbins of the American Principles Project explains:



But the data collection gets more interesting when we consider HB 2103, a noxious piece of legislation passed by the Texas Legislature in 2013 (sidenote: Which we encouraged Governor Perry to veto):
Interested parties assert that student data collected by the Texas Education Agency should be made more accessible to researchers so that it can be used to improve the state’s education system. C.S.H.B. 2103 aims to provide for this increased accessibility and also seeks to establish an education research center advisory board and set limits on who can request research, which would allow the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to sift through fewer requests and approve researchers in a more timely manner.
And who helped write HB 2103?!?  Dan Branch!!!

And, just to come full circle, guess who's on the 'Advisory' Board of Commit2Dallas:


To summarize: The legislator who wrote the bill to enable Common Core style data collection in Texas also sits on a board attempting to implement Common Core in Dallas County.  That legislator is now running for Texas Attorney General.  We'll stick with Ken Paxton!!!

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Remember, Dan Branch got a $5000 donation from George W. Bush, which is notable when you consider that Common Core began under his administration and that Jeb is a major Common Core booster.

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To learn more about Commit2Dallas, read this presentation they gave to the Dallas City Council two months ago; Dan Branch is mentioned on page 8:

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