When I write about local issues, it is with the hope that it will help not only local friends, but people wherever they’re reading. So today’s post is about a proposition that is likely to be on the Harris County ballot this off-year November election. But it is also about how the enemy is going about separating parents from the teaching of their children.
This is Texas, where Governor Perry refused federal money for implementing Common Core, the curriculum (no—not a “curriculum,” but simply basic standards, they claim—that just happen to dictate what will be taught in each classroom, on each specific day, in a specified manner; why would you call that curriculum?) that happened to promote a worldview that is in conflict with capitalism, US Constitutional freedom, God-given natural rights, freedom of religion, and probably anything else in conflict with the worldview of most parents.
This is Texas, where the state legislature, led by my State Senator Dan Patrick and others, succeeded in getting rid of CSCOPE, which was a Texas-created (supposedly) version of Common Core, that again wasn’t really “curriculum,” because it was all online, but it also promoted the Common Core worldview indoctrination.
The enemy, however, is relentless. Now we’re looking at what you could probably call Common Core for Babies. A renamed ACORN group, Collaborative for Children (with ties to George Soros and a long line of Obama minions), has created a corporation in Harris County for the purpose of placing Common Core materials in daycare centers. This organization is Harris County School Readiness Corporation, with a program called Choice Partners. [My notes were insufficient on the status and connection of all the entities. I reserve the right to edit if I learn more later.]
The way they’re going about it is to get tax money, funneled through the Harris County Department of Education, and then offer it to daycares, aiming first at low-income areas that are most likely to be vulnerable to offers of free stuff. The exchange would go something like this:
Listen, we’ll pay your employees for you. You’ll no longer need to worry about meeting payroll, so you’ll be able to concentrate on taking care of children, which is your real passion. We’ll also help pay for equipment and supplies. Did we mention, we’ll even go into the homes of the children and offer guidance to those families? No, this won’t cost you anything. Really. All we ask is that you use our program, teach the things we provide in the way we require. Think about it. It’s for the Children.
It’s always for the children. Right.
I first learned about this issue in June. Colleen Vera wrote about it in her blog, Texas Trash Talk. Her piece is full of information and connections. But at that time the “to do” part was simply to call legislators during the special session to see if they could find a way to act on it. So I saved the information but didn’t pass it along.
Two months later the threat grows. Here’s the update. Harris County Department of Education (HCDE) has up to now discussed the many known flaws of the program but nevertheless voted 6-1 in favor—so far only to gather more information and decide later.
Meanwhile Collaborative for Children (the ACORN remake) has been gathering signatures to request placing a proposition on the ballot to fund the program. The wording will be called something like a “penny tax.” The phrase “equalization tax” might also appear, because that is what the funding of HCDE is called. Currently this equalization tax is a 2/3 penny tax per $100 of property value, which translates to about $14 million a year. [HCDE educates no one; the independent school districts do that. There are only two counties in the state still with school boards, and money that goes to them is money that could otherwise go directly to the school districts. Dallas County at least uses their county department of education money for transportation, which seems reasonable. But Harris County uses it for various interfering, moneymaking programs. It should not exist. Rep. Debbie Riddle put forth a bill to eliminate the two CDEs during the last legislative session, but it didn’t get out of committee. We’ll have to deal with the corruption of HCDE another day.] An additional penny more than doubles the current amount. Some estimates project that this “insignificant” additional penny tax will take something like $45 million out of the economy [Houston Chronicle says $25 million, so I may have heard wrong while taking notes], pretty much for the sole purpose of indoctrinating our very young children in ways we have boldly rejected—twice.
|Kay Smith, HCDE trustee|
at Cypress Tea Party meeting
Kay Smith, the lone HCDE vote against, spoke at our local Tea Party meeting this past Saturday, which is how this issue got my attention again. (She also provided info to Colleen Vera for her article in June.) She needs help if there’s any hope of stopping this Common Core infiltration. The next HCDE vote will take place next Tuesday, August 20, 1:00 PM (address is 6300 Irvington Blvd., Houston, TX, 77022—it’s in the Reagan Building, where HCDE is housed, with the meeting taking place in their board room on the fourth floor, in case you are local and available to attend).
August 20th, the day of the vote to place the proposition on the county ballot, is also the deadline for collecting signatures for the petition. True the Vote has offered help in verifying signatures, as they did for Wisconsin’s recall back in 2012. But it’s not possible to verify on the very day the signatures are turned in, before the vote in the 1:00 meeting. I don’t know whether attending the meeting to speak against the proposition will help, but it can’t hurt.
County Judge Ed Emmett was apprised of the problem (all counties in Texas are led by an elected judge, so Judge Emmett is actually an elected official over a constituency that is maybe only smaller than New York City and Los Angeles). Just one of the legal questions is about putting a proposition on the ballot to direct school money to a private entity. He went to Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott to rule on whether the proposition can be placed on the ballot. AG Abbott would not rule; he said it would need to be ruled on by the county attorney. I think he’s legally correct on that. Unfortunately, the Harris County Attorney is Vince Ryan, a Democrat; he has already said he would allow placement on the ballot with a rather flippant, “Let them sue us later.”
I asked Kay Smith whether anyone was considering such a lawsuit, as a backup, in case we can’t persuade the HCDE board to vote against. She said it would be a very expensive ordeal. The opposition has big money behind it, leading back even to George Soros money. So it would be nice if there were some willing patriot out there willing to take it on, but she doesn’t know of anyone.
When I talked this over with my son Political Sphere, who is beginning to think like a lawyer, he said the lawsuit would be expensive to take all the way to the end. But what you really need is just a suit to be filed, so that you can ask for an injunction to prevent the proposition from appearing on the ballot until the questions of legality are answered. Even if it were to delay only a few months, that would avoid this year’s low-voter-turnout off-year election, and would give more time to get the word out. Getting the word out on CSCOPE brought its removal pretty quickly. And since lawsuits tend to go on for at least a year, maybe two, we might even avoid another election cycle. And maybe with the serious legal questions being brought to light, HCDE would then vote to change their minds and remove it from the ballot.
Still, as Kay Smith said, it would take a willing patriot out there, with at least some money resources, to take it on.
Why should we be so concerned about an issue that only affects some low-income daycares? Because that is not the end; that is only the foot in the door. The plan is to expand the daycare program statewide. And of course that’s not all. If they’ve been consistently teaching children up to age 4, why not add in pre-K kids? And if you include pre-K kids, why not kindergarteners? And after that, since kids are now used to this “standard” up to age 6 or so, why not extend that through elementary schools? And once you’ve had kids accustomed to the same thing for all their school lives, why not expand to middle schools and then high schools?
Oh, and by the way, since “standardization” is “for the children,” it wouldn’t be “fair” for any children to be left out. So they would push to have all Texas students meet the “standards,” even though that might mean forcing homeschools and private schools to use it. And if compliance is too difficult, then maybe we’d just need to eliminate homeschools, and maybe private schools too. For the children!
Does this seem farfetched? Remember that this administration’s DOJ went out of its way to overturn asylum for the Romeike family, from Germany, for no better reason than they wanted it on record that they supported Germany’s policy of preventing homeschooling and standardizing all the education in the country—because this administration believes parents do not have a natural right to make decisions about the education and upbringing of their children.
They want control. And, as Lenin said, “Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.” Of course they want control over the ideas being taught to children, to perpetuate their control over additional generations. Tyrannists always want that.
What can we do?
· Attend Tuesday’s HCDE meeting and make your opinion known.
· If it gets on the ballot (a 99% probability, according to Kay Smith), then get the word out to everyone you know, so they know this tiny off-year election is extremely important.
· If you have connections to resources, file a lawsuit regarding the illegalities of placing this particular proposition on the ballot.
· If it ends up on the ballot, vote against it, and take your friends to vote with you.
· If you’re in another place, expect this to be coming to you, and do all you can to fight it. The names change from place to place, so be aware and vigilant. Even if your locale has rejected Common Core in any form, this daycare version is a new backdoor approach to watch for.