Did I get your attention? Good. Because right now I feel like I back peddled five years ago to the time when several of us started an FB page to create opt out guides/resources for each state. At that time, we/opt outers were mocked, ignored, and ostracized. Lots of big wig activists and educational groups treated us like the plague. Opt out was not cool.
We have entered a new phase of activism – and it feels a bit like starting over. It’s now September of 2016 where everyone and their mother loves opt out – even New York RegentRoger Tilles!!! Opt out has gone mainstream!!!!
When opt out starting going mainstream, it felt okay at first, but then, suddenly – it didn’t. Why was everybody sharing the opt out love??? Did humanity suddenly return? Um, no. I don’t trust easily and something felt amiss. And I always listen to my gut feelings and research to confirm these feelings.
Backtrack to March of 2015.
We at UOO discovered the ECS “opt out” guide and I pointed to it on my blog. ECS is partially funded by Pearson, among other folks. Of course we asked ourselves, why was ECS creating a state by state opt out guide? Since when did Pearson and the other corporate cronies want to help citizens figure out how to opt out?
Many of us started fishing. We discovered more. Opt out was a big fish in a little pond. We’d been had. Hook. Line. Sinker.
In October 2015 I wrote this – it was clear that opt out was on the way out as competency-based education (daily online curriculum and testing) entered.
Opting out of the end of year test now served the needs of the .01%. The opt out movement had been co-opted. The end goal – all along – was daily online testing – via online modules that break down learning into discrete skills that must be mastered – all under the guise of personalizing learning to better meet the needs of individual learners. Not only did they plan to personalize the academic skills per child, they also planned to tap into a child’s emotions and behaviors to further tailor the learning to the child’s needs (look up SEL/social-emotional learning) – all with the end goal to create more profit for the .01%.
Opt Out, in its current form, was dead.
But – let me make something very clear. We needed the opt out movement to generate a pool of aware citizens – we needed it to build relationships. We, the people, helped fuel a movement of questioning, civil disobedience, and strategic problem solving – all absolutely necessary for this next phase of strategic actions . Opt out was necessary to save not only our public schools, but this planet. The opt out movement is and was important. But, we Opt Out is DEAD | BustED Pencils: "Opt Out is DEAD"