Jenni White - Education Director

Today, ROPE 2.0 focuses on four areas, each led by a separate Director; Education, Legislation, Politics and Parental Rights. Jenni White serves as Education Director. You can read more of her work here via: ROPE2.0 blog

We Have A New Education Secretary

For those of you who might have been living in a cave for the months since November, the Senate has confirmed controversial Secretary of Education nominee Betsy DeVos.

So concerned were we here at ROPE – along with THOUSANDS of grassroots mom and dad education activists who have been fighting Common Core across the nation – that we wrote a letter to the President in November. You can read it here to follow our concerns.Read more »

From The 'This Is Bad' File: Senator Lankford And Senator Inhofe Both Support Betsy DeVos

February 3rd, Oklahoman reporter Ben Felder tells Oklahomans that both Senator Lankford and Senator Inhofe will support Betsy DeVos. This is bad – very bad indeed.

It’s no secret I’ve been critical of Trump’s nominee for the Department of Education. Our highest-read blog this year was “Questions: Drain the swamp? Betsy DeVos? Where do parents come in?”, where I covered the top five reasons grassroots education activists object to the confirmation of Betsy DeVos. 

A recent article in Truth in American Education by prominent Common Core activists Jane Robbins and Erin Tuttle, “Is President Trump Being Played By Betsy DeVos and Jeb Bush” delineates yet another list of reasons as to why her confirmation will NOT create the change necessary to overhaul the flailing American Public Education System and help American students regain educational prominence.

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And the Winner IS....Betsy DeVos

And so, for those of you who didn’t find out today, Betsy DeVos has secured the nomination for Secretary of Education chalking up a HUGE VICTORY in the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee with an 12-11 vote strictly on party lines. Goodness! This sounds like it bodes well for bipartisan-collective-happy Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) moving forward.

So much for Trump’s draining of the swamp…. 

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Despite Ferocious Opposition, Oklahomans Choose Choice

Originally published in an edited format at School Reform News

This election cycle, candidates for state office who supported school choice issues were targeted for opposition by a group of Oklahoma teachers and educators collectively referred to as the “Teacher Caucus” who often engaged in ugly rhetoric and questionable campaign methods. November 8th, Oklahomans not only resoundingly repudiated a majority of Teacher Caucus-backed candidates, but a state question which would have raised state taxes to provide state teachers a pay raise.

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SB 93 by Smalley: Raises Concerns Regarding Religious Liberty and Parental Rights

(Update 1/14: I received an immediate reply from Senator Smalley. He forwarded the email he was sending in response to the email and some background and thoughts. I have not received answers to my questions. As soon as I get them, I will post in red.)

I recently received a legislative alert from HSLDA regarding SB93 filed by Oklahoma Senator Jason Smalley. This bill addresses changes to current law regarding children IN DHS custody or ENTERING DHS custody. 

Unfortunately, in their email alert, HSLDA doesn’t provide a link to the bill (A BIG NO-NO) and only provides a brief, overall assessment of what the changes made by Smalley to the bill will accomplish. They then tell Oklahomans to contact Senator Smalley (they do provide his contact information) using a prefabricated letter.

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The Disease of Educational Statism: Betsy DeVos isn’t a cure - by all appearances, she’s a symptom

The definition of “statism” according to Merriam-Webster is

Concentration of economic controls and planning in the hands of a highly centralized government often extending to government ownership of industry

Applying this definition to the state of education in America today is easily accomplished by changing a few words:

Concentration of education funding, control and planning in the hands of a highly centralized government, or moneyed individuals, often extending to government ownership of public education

I couldn’t help thinking about this concept as I read the recent (1/6/17) op-ed by Governor – and former Republican Presidential Nominee – Mitt Romney…

Read more via ROPE2:

A-F Grading - Exchanging One Educational Overreach for Another

Moving into 2017 it looks as though our Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE) will not attempt to find the “pro-local-control” the Education and Workforce Committee promised of the new ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act – the replacement for No Child Left Behind – in itself a replacement for the reauthorizations of the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act by every preceding president).
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This blog originates from ROPE2: