Lost among the media stories on the Tea Party are groups and individuals in Missouri seeking to hold government accountable who do the important part of monitoring government.
One task on my todo list is to showcase those people and their causes - all hard-working volunteers who deserve attention just as much as anything a Tea Party group does. Not to disparage Tea Party groups - in fact, number two on that todo list is showcasing the various Tea Party groups that have sprung up around Missouri that are separate from the St Louis Tea Party.
So starting off, we're going to pitch Missouri Education Watchdog, a group that is focused on the Race To The Top and CORE standards for education that are a clear power grab by the Obama administration of local and state school standards.
Missouri Education Watchdog is the site, and here are some of the highlights on this important issue.
- 1) A conference call with Arne Duncan and Chris Nicastro (Commissioner of Education, MO) used to generate press supports for more federal education dollars.
- 2) A decision to waive state sovereignty in order to qualify federal funds (at the cost of more unfunded mandates.
The states have to agree to give control of their curriculum and staffing process. What do the states receive in return? They take on millions of dollars in unfunded mandates (about $150 Million in Missouri) and no local control. Does that seem like a sound business decision to you? The MO Department of Education is still pursuing these funds. It wants the taxpayers to take on a tremendous amount of debt even as the state has to cut one BILLION dollars from the budget next year
- Like the unemployment funds, the dollars from the federal government come with a pricetag. We take their money now, and have to come up with it in the future, in addition to complying with any new standards they decide should be applied. It's the political version of blackmail - where they hook you in a time of need, then own you forever more.
- 3) The decision by Missouri, who already has some of the highest education standards in the country, to waive their state privileges and give them to the federal government.
We're going to work with them to get names, dates, websites, and actions. Control of our schools, along with control of the media, finance, and healthcare, has been the plan of the Obama administration since the beginning.