Immediate Action: Call Today on Sen Kiffmeyer’s Survey Bill Amendment

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ATTENTION MACC MEMBERS!!  CALL TO ACTION!!  SF1495

A special thank you to Sen. Mary Kiffmeyer, who is offering an Amendment regarding the excessive volume of surveys given to our children.  This Amendment requires an “Opt In” instead of an “Opt Out” as is the practice now.  We have heard many stories about surveys that are occurring with “passive” consent.  These surveys may contain offensive subject matter and/or take up far too much classroom time.  We are very concerned with the intrusive collection of data on our children as well as a lack of parental notification.  This Amendment will not apply to the MN Student Health Survey, which occurs every 3 years.   The MN Student Health Survey will still have the “opt out” ability.  This is an important start to peeling back the layers of the intrusion in our children’s life, and needs your support.

Please call and email Senator WigerSenate Education Chair ASAP and ask him to please include Senator Kiffmeyer’s Survey Amendment in the Education Policy Bill SF1495.   THE HEARING IS TOMORROW, MARCH 19th, so we need you to act quickly and please take the 5 minutes to do this.   You may use the script template below or create your own.

Senator Wiger can be reached at  (651) 296-6820

sen.chuck.wiger@senate.mn

 Script:

 Hello, my name is _____________________.  I live in __________________, Minnesota.  I am calling today to ask that Senator Wiger include Senator Kiffmeyer’s Student Survey Amendment in the Education Policy bill SF1495, to protect our children from intrusive data collection.  Our children are being asked to answer information on surveys that is beyond their scope of understanding in both content and consequence, while taking away from instruction time and giving data to parties outside of the school.  I am concerned this data exposure puts my child’s personal information at risk, and is something that can affect their future.  The amount of surveys that are occurring are taking away valuable instruction time, and offer no viable educational enhancement.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Minnesota Opts Out of MCA Standardized Testing

MACC Operation Opt Out MEME 2015

Minnesota is Opting Out of MCA Standardized Testing!  Our Operation Opt-Out map shows some of the various school districts where parents are opting out their children from the MCAs.

MACC is very encouraged to see many friends across the state opting out of the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCAs).  Parents have the legal and fundamental right to advocate for their children and guide their children’s education.

The recent announcement of Governor Mark Dayton and subsequent legislative hearings with Minnesota Commissioner, Brenda Casellius, have revealed that standardized testing is Minnesota is undergoing some reduction. We couldn’t be more pleased!

However, we still hear of some Minnesota school districts giving up to 14 standardized and other equivalent online tests per year, which does not account for teacher classroom tests.  This is abusive to students and learning.

At MACC, we believe in FAMILY FIRST!  So consider a few important reasons to opt your child out of the MCAs.

1.  Parents cannot see the test questions.

2.  Online tests collect and mine data studied by psychometricians at Pearson and AIR (American Institutes of Research).

3.  Online tests collect and mine data sent to the SLEDS – State Longitudinal Education Data System.

4.  Like other states, Minnesota is pushing for a file on every child and designated with a unique student identifier called “Digital Backpacks”.   Students already have personal log-in codes that identify them immediately.

5.  Computer adaptive testing does not test every child the same.   The subject may be the same for all students but the questions are not.

6.  Computer adaptive testing aids in uncovering children’s personal beliefs, values and characteristics.

7.  The FERPA law (Family Educational Right and Privacy Act) was gutted in 2012.  All data is now shared among 3rd parties, not only in our state but outside the state.  Once the data is “out there”, it cannot be retrieved.

8.  The MCAs are run through Pearson.  Pearson is a player in the reform of Common Core standards by delivering curriculum to match the tests given.  Pearson is also in charge of the PARCC test, one of the two national consortias created to test the Common Core Standards and thereby created a resulting curriculum.  Pearson has been well funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

If you would like to have your child opt out, merely use our MACC opt out testing template and hand deliver to your school’s principal, teacher (s) and testing director.  Your child will be given alternate instruction during the tests and removed to the media center or cafeteria where they can complete their classwork.

Visit our Operation Opt-Out link on our MACC website or Minnesota Against Common Core on facebook to get that opt out template.  Parents may always write their own letter to opt out their child.  Consider meeting with your principal to inform why you are opting out.

Bill Refused – Possible Amendment – Testimony Needed Next Tuesday

Children working on ipads

Sadly, we’ve learned that Rep Lucero’s,  Parental Curriculum Review amendment was refused to be heard by Rep Sondra Erickson in the House Education Committee today.   We, the parents of Minnesota,  know how important that amendment would have been to help clarify curricular materials in the 21st century.   Because we want to continue to work with Rep Erickson, we respectfully submit that members refrain from personal attacks and the like.  We have two other bills that must go through Erickson’s education committee.

Rep Lucero stated that there may be chance to bring HF 1777 forth as an amendment on the floor.   We are hopeful!  We encourage you to continue making calls to Rep Erickson’s office making the case that we, the people of Minnesota are asking for her help and asking her to help support parental rights.  Please ask to speak to Rep Erickson directly.

We have a CALL FOR TESTIMONY on Tuesday night, March 17th at 6:00pm.    We must know by Monday at noon.  This will be for the Data Bill, HF 1779.  It has, like the Parental Curriculum Bill, outstanding bipartisan support.  Please let Linda Bell know if you can speak.  We need to have other speakers besides those who already spoke this week.  We may need additional testifiers for another bill next week yet to be announced.  Thanks!

We continue to care about our children, that will never stop!  We will not give up!!!  Thank you so much for your support and the phone calls you made today!  MACC cannot work at the Capitol, present speeches around the state and work with individuals and districts and school boards without YOU!  We love you all! Despite this set back, let’s continue to work together to make a positive difference for our children and the next generation!

MACC Synopsis: Three Legislative Bills to Support

 

Little Girl in Classroom

MACC has been working with legislators to  support parental rights and authorities and protect children and families from the release of personally identifiable information in data collection.  This is a synopsis of the bills and soon we will publish call and email informationIt is still vitally important that you email and call Rep Sondra Erickson, Chair of the House Education Policy Committee TODAY on HF 1777 and allowing the bill to be heard in her committee.

 

  1. HF 1777 Parental Curriculum Review is an existing statute that has been updated for the 21st century to include “online learning”.  The statute states that parents have the right to view all instructional materials – power points, textbooks, website instructional materials – basically all curricular materials.  We are updating to include and clarify online curriculum.  We should see the senate companion to the HF 1777 introduced on the senate floor next week.  This bill is nicely bipartisan to start and we want to expand support across parties.  Thank you to Rep Eric Lucero and all bill sponsors!

HF 1777 Author:  Eric Lucero (R)

HF 1777 Sponsors:  Sondra Erickson (R); Glenn Gruenhagen (R); Jim Davnie (DFL); Jerry Newton (DFL)

SF ????  Will report on the introduction of this bill in the Senate next week.

 

Read the bill information for HF 1777 here!

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/bills/bill.php?f=HF1777&b=house&y=2015&ssn=0

 

 

  1. HF 99 / SF 979 Notice Requirements for Student Surveys is a new bill that covers parental notification when schools administer classroom surveys.  From parents across Minnesota, we are hearing and seeing surveys administered weekly (and lots of them).  The survey results are sent off to 3rd parties who can sell that information under the gutted FERPA law.  These actions are all unaccountable to parents.  We cannot get that data back once it is sent off.  The concern is that parents are not being given notice on the surveys.  This bill uses “prior written informed consent” which changes the volumes of surveys to an opt-in as opposed to an opt-out.  Parents can opt-out of surveys now, if they but know the date of the survey and topic.  This bill is related to parental rights and authorities and data collection.  It has some bipartisan support in the House that we would like to see expand to all parties.  The Senate is partisan only.  We want to see both House and Senate having good strong bipartisan support.  Thank you to Rep Peggy Scott and Sen Mary Kiffmeyer and all bill sponsors!

 

HF 99 Author:  Peggy Scott (R); Chairman, Data Practices & Civil Law

HF 99 Sponsors:  John Lesch (DFL); Cindy Pugh (R); Brian Johnson (R); Jim Newberger (R); Eric Lucero (R); Anna Wills (R)

SF 979 (companion) Author:   Mary Kiffmeyer (R)

SF 979 Sponsors:  Branden Petersen (R); Michelle Benson (R)

 

Read the bill information here for HF 99!

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/bills/bill.php?f=HF99&b=house&y=2015&ssn=0

 

Read the bill information here for SF 979!

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/bills/bill.php?f=SF979&b=senate&y=2015&ssn=0

 

 

  1. HF 1779  Student data access addressed, disclosure requirements affecting personally identifiable information about a student clarified, and personally identifiable information in electronic student education records managed.

This bill addresses a student’s personally identifiable information and how a student’s educational record is managed and extends to public, private and homeschool students. 

Two amendments are added to clarify parental authority over the disclosure of personally identifiable information with parent or student authorization.   As one senator recently stated, “Who owns the data? – the students/parents or “the state”?  Who owns the data speaks to who is in charge.”

 

(b) Notwithstanding other law to the contrary, except law governing law enforcement 
activities, and in addition to section 13.04, subdivision 2, at the time a governmental entity 
collects personally identifiable information as defined in Code of Federal Regulations, 
title 34, section 99.3, about a student, the agency or institution must obtain consent 
from the eligible student, parent, or guardian before the state agency or state institution 
discloses personally identifiable information about the student to any third party or to any 
governmental entity over which the state of Minnesota, a school district, or a school 
has no direct control.

 

Notwithstanding other provisions in this section or other law to the contrary, except 
law governing law enforcement activities, in order to prevent any unauthorized access, 
disclosure, or misuse of student data, a school district, a school, and the commissioners 
of education, higher education, and employment and economic development must not 
allow personally identifiable information as defined in Code of Federal Regulations, title 
34, section 99.3, about any P-20 student reported to or available through SLEDS to be 
disclosed to a third party or to any governmental entity over which the state of Minnesota, 
a school district, or school has no direct control. A school district or school must annually 
obtain the consent of eligible students and parents or guardians before disclosing directory 
information about the student who is the subject of the information.

 

This bill has good bipartisan support!  We want to get the word out not only to the education committee but also to the Data Practices and Civil Law committee where this bill starts its journey.  Thank you to author, Rep. Eric Lucero and all bill sponsors!!!

 

HF 1779 Author: Rep Eric Lucero (R)

HF 1779 Sponsors:  Glenn Gruenhagen (R); Sondra Erickson (R); Jim Davnie (DFL); Jason Isaacson (DFL); Dennis Smith (R); Jerry Newton (DFL)

 

 

Read the bill information here for HF 1779!

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/bills/bill.php?f=HF1779&b=house&y=2015&ssn=0

 

We are encouraged and excited!  More information to follow in who to contact as well as contact information.

Keeping you informed on CCSS in Minnesota

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