From: Amy
Subject: Vote Yes on HB 342
Date: Mon Mar 03 04:13:47 MST 2014
Dear Representative,
I ask that you pass HB 342 to put Utah on its own higher standards for education that are created by Utahns, for Utahns. I have many concerns with Common Core and its overreach, but my most important reason is the loss of local control over education and the lack of respect of current laws and the Constitution. 

 The General Education Provisions Act is a law that prohibits federal government from directing or supervising state education.  "No provision of any applicable program shall be construed to authorize any department, agency, officer, or employee of the United States to exercise any direction, supervision, or control over the curriculum, program of instruction, administration, or personnel of any educational institution, school or school system...."  The Obama administration and the Department of Education have tossed that aside.  They are very involved in the reformation.   

U.S. Constitution - powers are delegated to the states.  "Amendment 10 - The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.   

Another concern is the State Longitudinal Database - Utah excepted 9.6 million dollars from the federal government to build this data base. Utah has a P-20w database, which means it will track from preschool to workforce.  I am not okay with my children being tracked without my consent.
 “every governor and chief state school officer has agreed to build statewide longitudinal data systems that can follow individual students from early childhood through K-12 and postsecondary ed and into the workforce as a condition for receiving State Fiscal Stabilization Funds as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).  A condition of getting the funding (ARRA money) was that the system would be interoperable.
  • Is the SLDS accessible by the federal government?  Yes.
  •   At the White House Datapalooza meeting held in 2012  the CEO of escholar stated that Common Core is the glue that holds data collection together.  You may watch this and think it sounds all rosy and wonderful, but when did it become the governments job to parent our children?  I am perfectly capable and more so, than the government at helping my children set goals.  Again, I don't recall being asked if my child's data could be collected.   

And lastly,  I have seen my math loving son go from a top math student to one who absolutely hates math.  I had to literally drag my child to class every day, because he no longer had the love of learning. 

I sat night after night with my fourth grade daughter helping her with double digit math while tears streamed down her face.  If you have researched Common Core math at all, you will know that it is no longer taught the traditional way.  My daughter had no math book, just sheets with math problems.  My husband and I could not help her with this new math because of lack of math books and no instructions.  We taught her the traditional way to multiply multiple digits and she understood.  But that wasn't good enough for Common Core. You see Common Core doesn't care about the correct answer, 4x4 can now equal 9.  Common Core is more concerned about the steps, and this new math has way more steps than traditional math.  So confusing for a child to remember all the different steps.  I want my child to know that math must have a correct answer, and not just some random answer as long as it is explained.  

Common Core is limiting our children and damping their spirits.  My children are not the only children going through this. Alpine school district now has a law suit on their hands for the damage it is doing to one child. 

Please vote for HB 342.  Please vote to support our Constitution and Utah's children.  

Amy Burton
Utah Taxpayer