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If your state (or district) is partnered with CASEL, the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning you need to be aware and ask questions. Two states have already dropped out.  CASEL’s mission is to gather personal information about students’ emotional behavior,  and turn emotion into a standard to rank and measure children. They’ve been working on this for some time, according to this 2011 document from CASEL:


If your state or district is involved with CASEL, ask what information they are collecting and sharing about your child.

CASEL, Emotional Standards, and Collaboration with States and Districts

MEW wrote about the Aspen Institute’s new  Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Commission whose work is based largely on CASEL(If you haven’t look at this new commission with ties to Gates and Zuckerberg, you should read about it now.)   CASEL’s pilots on SEL will fuel the SEL Commission with the “evidence” it needs to go forward with creating these national standards. In May of 2016, CASEL offered money to states to join their Collaborating States Initiative, “to actively partner with states on the development of policies, learning standards or goals, and guidelines to support statewide implementation of social and emotional learning (SEL).”

8 States joined CASEL but …


As EdWeek reported  on August 1, 2016, 8 states were originally chosen to participate. “The participating states were California, Georgia, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Washington. And an 11 additional states that originally applied to join the collaborative will have access to the materials it develops. ” 

As parents and the community find out that this initiative is to collect children’s emotional data, there has been pushback.

Georgia recently withdrew from CASEL even though they received a grant to be part of this emotional data mining initiative.

Tennessee  was the first to withdraw from CASEL after their involvement drew strong reaction and objections from school boards,  legislators, community, and parents. Tennessee lawmakers said the emotional standards were an overreach by the state and according to the TN Daily News Journal, the TN Dept. of Ed wasn’t even aware that TN had been selected :

“…when school board member Lisa Moore said she was contacted by parents several weeks ago when they saw an article online about the program, developed by a group called CASEL (Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning).

“Our state Department of Education had applied for and been granted for Tennessee to be a trial, a test case for social and education learning,” Moore said.

She said when she called the state, no one seemed to know what she was talking about.   “That in itself alarmed me,” Moore said.”


Not shocking, as these initiatives are created by the corporate reformer crowd at the national level and very seldom do parents or teachers (those closest to the student) have any input or even know it is happening.  If the State Department of Education has no idea of a program occurring in their state, it makes one wonder who is driving the bus: local education agencies or edtech in coordination with federal governmentInteresting to note that CASEL played a role in providing guidance on ESSA, and CASEL is partially funded by the federal government.



It appears CASEL has also hedged their bets by not only enrolling states (who appear to be bailing)  in their initiative, CASEL has also enticed Districts to join.

CASEL partner districts include:

If you are concerned about children’s emotions being collected and ranked by a national standard, now is the time to say something.  Say NO.

Cheri Kiesecker