by Linda Murphy, Oklahoma Educator, June 9, 2015
Do you want the federal government to check your child for mental Health? ……. give a psychological evaluation?…..or set behavioral goals for all students? These are all a part of the plans rapidly advancing in President Obama’s administration for public school students. These efforts have been exposed before in years past when they created great opposition from parents and teachers who put the brakes on.
This year Alabama’s State Superintendent of Schools Tommy Bice has tried to get a Comprehensive K-12 Mental Health Plan implemented in his state but so far the public outcry has prevented it. (See articles linked at bottom.)
Now…. just as we see that the national efforts to implement Common Core State Standards have a proverbial “stake in their heart”….. we are seeing this rise of effort by the federal government and some state leaders, like Alabama, to put in place testing that is being driven to delve into the very center of the being of a child. Testing to determine not what students know intellectually, academically or “cognitively” or what academic skills they have developed, as we would expect in K-12 grade with traditional education testing, but testing developed to determine how their minds work…. how they feel “emotionally or affectively”…… what their beliefs and attitudes are, which effect a student’s determination to succeed.
Student Testing is being “transformed” into a series of assessments. The “inclusion of sophisticated “behavioral” components (in assessments) encompass a wide variety of lifestyle and opinion data, nailing down student proclivities, social attitudes and parent-inculcated worldviews combined with the plethora of “health” (sex and drug) surveys, mental-health screenings, diary/journal-keeping and other miscellaneous questionnaires mostly taking place in the classroom under cover of academics” according to the findings of education expert Bev Eakman (read her article in Part II).
The Obama administration has been working on research in this area for several years and released a report that shocked many readers in February 2013. “Promoting Grit, Tenacity and Perseverance: Critical Factors for Success in the 21st Century” is linked below and provides much insight into the determination behind this push to go beyond academics into the very soul (mind, will and emotions) of a child.
The NAEP -National Assessment of Education Progress, where the new psychological assessments will be added, is supposedly a “voluntary” test given to students in randomly selected schools. The NAEP started in 1969 following a grant and work with the Carnegie Foundation. If you have haven’t seen the Carnegie work with the Clinton Administration exposed by the letter written to Hillary Clinton by Marc Tucker, director of Carnegie’s NCEE -National Center for Education and the Economy, you will want to read it in the following link. You will see their “cradle to grave” plans for all children which includes psychological testing. http://www.eagleforum.org/educate/marc_tucker/
In the 1990s NAEP came under fire by parents and teachers for including psychological testing. Students in Pennsylvania were tested to see if they would “follow a group or act independently” along with other non-academic questions. This rightfully alarmed parents who took it to court and won a suit against the federal government.
National testing and the direction being taken by the Obama administration is given power through NCLB -No Child Left Behind’s federal mandates. We must work to KILL NCLB instead of re-authorizing it in the ESEA -Elementary and Secondary Education Act which is advancing in Washington D.C. now.
Oklahoma, like all states have big money corporate interests keeping several education groups and the State Chamber of Commerce in support of the nationalization of education which our state citizens have rejected twice. In 1995 we repealed OBE -Outcomes Based Education from our state law and in 2014 we repealed Common Core State Standards. The NAEP psychological testing is another layer on top of state testing (which much also be kept free of psychological probes).
The NAEP has been lurking in the Federal Department of Education for years, with social engineers just “chomping at the bits” to put in a psychological evaluation of all students K-12th grade. Of course, all done this is being done in the name of student safety and student success.
What is the NAEP? The NAEP website states “The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is the largest nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America’s students know and can do in various subject areas. Paper-and-pencil assessments are conducted periodically in mathematics, reading, science, writing, the arts, civics, economics, geography, U.S. history, and in Technology and Engineering Literacy (TEL). Beginning in 2017, NAEP will begin administering technology-based assessments (TBA) for mathematics, reading, and writing, with additional subjects added in 2018 and 2019.”
Education Week, June 2, 2015, told the nation that the psychological testing of students will be integrated into the 2017 NAEP. WE MUST EXPOSE this….. warn parents, teachers and even those supporting the “transformation” of education where this is all leading. Then everyone please get on the phone, email, twitter, facebook; set up meetings; write letters and tell your United States Representative and Senators to “GET THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OUT OF STUDENT TESTING and KILL NCLB!”
Link to Education Week article: http://mobile.edweek.org/c.jsp;jsessionid=DA03EF5ED8DC4DD36C121BEE64178056.aldo2?item=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.edweek.org%2Few%2Farticles%2F2015%2F06%2F03%2Fnations-report-card-to-gather-data-on.html%3Fcmp%3DENL-EU-NEWS2&DISPATCHED=true&cid=25983841&cmp=ENL-EU-NEWS2