Apparently, there’s a new Bill Gates’ funded video circulating. It’s all about making sure parents don’t opt out. Oh Please. Rather than promote the paid advertisement for Gates’ Common Core tests and data collection, I am instead going to ask you to watch this short 4 minute little video about children and data collection. Enjoy.

predict this video pic

If you watched the video above, (and really, I hope you did) it’s enough to make you consider why the reformers push ONLINE everything and why they spend so much time and money (WestEd, Chamber of Commerce, Children Now, PTA, Learn Zillion) convincing you that somehow this movement is about kids.   Not buying it.

Speaking of not buying it: Remember this video entitled Granddad learns about Common Core  allegedly from the pro-Common Core, Pro-testing crowd?  The video disrespects and makes fun of elderly people.  As so many (here, here, here) reported, this was a feeble attempt to shame those who oppose Common Core and  who opt out of the mandated Common Core assessments. As Diane Ravitch pointed out, Common Core has an image problem.  YEP.

granddad video pic

Apparently making fun of people didn’t gain Gates and the reformers the #CommonCoreLove they were looking for. Instead, they are now putting their advertising dollars ( here, here, here, here … of course, there’s more)  into organizations who are using pictures and videos of children, for more “heartwarming” messages, and urging parents to “know how your kids are doing” by letting them take the test. Again, instead, I am going to offer this message:


Umm. NO.

If the parents in the Gates paid videos want to let their children take the test, that is their prerogative.  As for the rest of us, we know we can refuse tests. We will opt-out and we can tell other parents to watch a couple of the THOUSANDS of authentic videos available from news stations, parents, students, teachers, board members, superintendents, legislators, and grassroots organizations on why and how to Opt-Out of data collecting, high stakes, never validated, unproven standardized tests.


Remember hidden online algorithms and adaptive, personalized learning getting too personal

Think about algorithms before you allow your child to participate in online  tests and online learning.  If you have time, read this: With Emotion Recognition Algorithms, Computers Know What You’re Thinking. If you don’t have time, we posted a few interesting snippets below:

facial recog algorithm

“…the ability to capture, in video freeze-frame, fleeting expressions that are too quick for a human to definitively identify, the algorithms may already be smart enough to provide more information on what people are thinking than has ever before been available. “- Algorithms, Computers know what you are thinking

Still not convinced that online curriculum and assessments want to know more than your child’s score?

Read this from Psychology Today on  #MentalWealth

“High-stakes testing, obsessive data collection, and lofty promises of technology’s potential to “revolutionize” education are contributing to ever-increasing amounts of school-based screen-time. The invasion is occurring with complete disregard for what it taking away from in terms of basic developmental needs, as well as for screentime’s negative influence on nervous system health.  Health and development risks aside, research suggests computer use in schools drags down test scores).  “

“Why collect copious amounts of data if the process of data collection itself negatively impacts student performance? Or the ability to acquire real-life skills? Not surprisingly, when education policies are ineffective and impractical but continue to move forward like a freight train, what’s typically greasing the wheels is–you guessed it–money.”-The Hidden Agenda Behind 21st Century Learning, Psychology Today


and ask who sees your child’s data.




Cheri Kiesecker

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