The Student Success Act (HR 5), introduced by Rep. John Kline (R-MN) and Rep. Todd Rokita (R-IN), passed the House Education Committee and is scheduled for a vote this Tuesday before the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill would reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which the authors claim will undo the damage of No Child Left Behind and chart a new course that restores freedom to states and local schools and reduces the footprint of the federal government in state education policy.
Really? There seems to be a complete disconnect between what the authors say it will do and what it legally does, which is systematically dismantle both the reserved right of states to govern education and parents’ constitutional, inalienable right to lead in their child’s education.
On page 552, Subpart 4, section 6561 of HR 5, it states that the Secretary of Education can’t enforce any requirements under the program that would violate states’ rights unless the state legislature gives its consent to participate in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which encompasses around $25 BILLION dollars in aid to states. Essentially, participating in the program to receive funds requires states to waive their state’s rights and those of the parent over their child if they conflict with ANY requirements of the program.
[The US Department of Education may not violate states’ rights] unless the legislature of that State shall have by law expressly approved that program and, in doing so, have waived the State’s rights and authorities to act inconsistently with any requirement that might be imposed by the Secretary as a condition of receiving that assistance.
The state will not be able to act inconsistently with ANY requirement that the Secretary of Education MAY impose through this program if they want to receive funding. Geez, I thought the NCLB waivers and Race to the Top grants were coercive!
Legislative approval of the program and the loss of your state and parental rights can be accomplished through a simple vote to include federal funds under the program into the state budget.
This approval may be accomplished by a vote to affirm a State budget that includes the use of such Federal funds……….. by approving the budget, the State legislature is expressly approving the grant program and, in doing so, waiving the State’s rights and authorities to act inconsistently with any requirement that might be imposed by the Secretary as a condition of receiving that assistance.
This is sneaky. They want states to be able to pass this without any fanfare, as part of the budget, much the way Common Core was adopted- under the radar. But don’t worry, after the bill details how your state’s right over education will be violated, they include a meaningless assurance in section 6564 (page 555) that the “Intent of Congress” is only to revoke the rights waived by participation in the program, “state control over public education and parental rights to control the education of their children are vested exclusively within the autonomous zone of independent authority reserved to the States and individual Americans by the United States Constitution.”
Gosh, thanks, guys! It’s so reassuring that you had the “sense” to let me keep any constitutional and inalienable rights over parental control that you didn’t illegally revoke by tying them to the receipt of ESEA program funding.
Call Todd Rokita and tell him we will NOT stand by while he and the Congress violate our parental and state rights. Tell him to kill the HR 5- it’s anything BUT a Student Success Act.
There’s more to the Act that needs to be opposed, I only touched on the most glaring points. Anita Hoge of Pennsylvania has tons more to share on the above interview.