WASHINGTON, D.C. – It’s Common Core testing time across the country and parents wondering whether to take the leap and refuse their state’s version of the Common Core test for their kids should consider one more factor brought to them courtesy of Big Data that just may push them over the opt-out cliff.
The U.S. Department of Education sponsored a study called “Promoting Grit, Tenacity, and Perseverance,” which made recommendations on how the Common Core might collect and use “non-cognitive” data using tests, online textbooks, and perhaps even games.
In this study, the Common Core technocrats envisioned a world in which school kids would “self-report” their feelings about their learning environment with random surveys that may pop up on an assessment or on a digital textbook throughout the day. Students could wear beepers that would go off at random times which would prompt the student to self-report their feelings and maybe record what was causing them to feel frustrated or concerned.
They also foresee possibly using “informant reports” that could be made by someone other than your child like teachers, parents, or other outside observers and added to your child’s data file. Is your child withdrawn or anti-social? Let’s make an entry into his file.
School records, they contend, can provide important indicators of perseverance over time as well, to include attendance patterns, grades, test scores, social services used, and discipline problems.
Wouldn’t it be helpful to an establishment political group to release some behavioral records or therapy session notes during your rebellious period in high school should you ever challenge or threaten their positions? Add on to that having access to all of your medical records aggregated under Obamacare and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). This would make for a pretty compliant electorate.
In the central planners’ Brave New World, they envision using neuroscience technology to tap into your child’s emotions while they are learning through facial expression technology and mood meters. Does the student look frustrated when they are reading about gun control? Perhaps they can have a “self-report” survey pop up on their computer to ask about their feelings regarding guns or if their parents have guns.
They fantasize about measuring physiological responses to tap into your child’s emotions by tracking eye movement, using pressure mouses, posture analysis seats, or using wireless skin conductance sensors that are inside a wristband that your child might wear. There is nothing they cannot know about your child according to these people.
With $100 million, Bill Gates helped start InBloom, a company which hoped to become the premiere middleman between schools and software vendors. They stored student data in the cloud format before funneling it to outside vendors to develop software applications, or other technologies.
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At the 2013 SXSW Technology Summit in Texas, Bill Gates interviewed InBloom’s CEO during a panel discussion on technology in education.
Gates waxed poetic about how all that data that they gathered could be used for research to tap into the estimated $9 billion market that is represented in the K-12 classrooms. All those customers, or rather students, that could benefit from all that data!
On a public television special, TED Talks Education, Bill Gates dreamily described how nice it would be to one day have a camera in every classroom so teachers could supposedly tape all their lessons and choose their top lesson to be used in their performance evaluation.
I’m sure the other 185 days of taped instruction would be destroyed since it would not be like Big Government to make sure teachers are teaching the appropriate, Common Core central approved position on every approved topic to your kids would it?
This has got to be science fiction set in a future far away right?
Big Testing companies, Pearson and ETS, have already suctioned data from your child if they took a national Common Core field test this time last spring 2014. They used your kids, in collusion with State Departments of Education, to gather data from your kids to improve their privately owned tests and whatever other product they are selling.
That way they could then sell their tests back to the states to use as their official Common Core-aligned test at multi-million dollar profits. What did schools, teacher, and students get in return? Absolutely nothing. They were not reimbursed for their time nor were they given money by these billionaire testing companies to improve their schools’ technology infrastructure.
Schools were also denied access to any of the field test data that may have been able to inform teaching or student learning. The schools acted as if these field tests were just another mandated test.
Try asking your school or state what the procedure is for you to find out what those private companies did and are still doing with your child’s data. Oh yeah, you don’t need to know.
Big Government, Big Data, and Big Business love Common Core and the data that it can suction from kids for their use without parent permission. But parents have a trump card, they can opt out of the Common Core tests and starve the Common Core beast of their kids’ data.
Published with permission