How Do You Collectivize Education? One Bill At A Time



March 21, 2011 - San Francisco, CA - - Much is being written about the changes and reforms being planned in education. Every special interest group, government agency, union, community nonprofit and mega business seemingly has its own plan for the education of our students. The classroom and its outcome or end product has become an extension of big business' planning department. People such as Bill and Melinda Gates think they can already predict many workers will be needed in various industries at specific points in the future.

This is nothing short of the collectivization of education, already a government monopoly, to produce a society deemed appropriate by the social engineers.

The federal government is in the process of analyzing its various departments to determine how many future employees will need to graduate with the proper credentials to fill positions. President Obama has been quoted as stating that the federal government needs the best and brightest of the future students and he has spent his time visiting some of the potential role-model schools for producing those future leaders of bureaucracy - meet Big Brother.

Primary and secondary schools have geared up to provide physical and mental health care, scientifically correct nutrition in the form of breakfasts, lunches and after-school snacks, physical education and lifestyle supportive services with a little academics on the side.

Now the U.S. Department of Education overseers, with the gleeful assistance of Congress and our California state legislators, are turning toward the postsecondary schools: the junior colleges, [Oops, pardon me, community colleges] state colleges and university system, to bring their educational programs in line with the new purpose of education.

How many times, in the last two years, have you heard or read media reports quoting some tax funded or governmental group's spokesperson claiming that everybody has a right to an education and that tomorrow's well prepared worker will need a college degree? Or, at the least, they assert that two years at a community college is the bare minimum requirement.

Sure, it makes sense, in a way. If educators have striven to guide our youth through schools in order to produce a pre-planned outcome, those efforts must not be lost as the student transitions over to the college or university system. By the way, "transitions" is one of the new academic buzz words. One does not graduate anymore; they transition to another level of continuous learning - life-long learning, as it is now called. Some will take longer to transition than others but it will be a smooth process from pre-K to grade 12 and maybe even a college degree of some sort.

In 1960, then-State Senator George Miller Jr. [father of our current Congressman George Miller] authored a bill creating a plan to organize California's higher education goals. It was originally titled the California Master Plan for Higher Education, but was renamed the Donahoe Higher Education Act, in honor of Margaret Donahoe, a former state legislator.

This rather short, concise bill provided for the following:

1. The creation of a Coordinating Council for Higher Education overseeing the coordination of junior [sic] colleges, state colleges and the University system, endowing it with the authority to acquire new sites for institutions of higher learning or to prohibit any new sites.

2. Assigned the University of California as the "primary state-supported academic agency for research."

3. Assigned a Board of 20 elected legislative officials and appointed trustees to oversee the state college system and set the terms of office.

4. It further stated in very definite language that, "The State College System shall be entirely independent of all political and sectarian influence and kept free there from in the appointment of its trustees and in the administration of its affairs." It further declared that "no person shall be debarred admission to any department of the state colleges on account of sex."

5. Junior colleges shall continue to be a part of the public school system through the 14th grade level. Instruction shall include, but not be limited to: standard collegiate courses for transfer to higher institutions, vocational and technical fields leading to employment and general or liberal arts courses.

6. The final and lengthiest chapter of the bill defined the purpose, composition of and scope of authority and reimbursement for services of the Coordinating Council for Higher Education.

There is not one word in this bill about regulating what is taught in the higher education programs except to state very clearly that this level of education was not to be used for the advancement of political or sectarian agendas.

Too bad the legislators couldn't leave it that way.

In 1999 an amendment was added to the act expanding the concept of higher education to include training in preparation for and fulfillment of the requirements of federal workforce development laws started under the Clinton Regime. This gives new meaning to the phrase "No Child Left Behind."

This term, California legislators have authored at least 14 bills amending and expanding the areas of interest contained in the Education Master Plan for Higher Education. They have little to do with academic education and everything to do with promoting some group's special interest. Thirteen bills are authored by Democrats and one by a Republican. Every one of the 13 bills reflects a political or sectarian special interest.

The effect of these bills would be to significantly expand the role of higher education as a further extension of the behavior modification programs in the primary and secondary school system, transitioning hand-picked students right from school into the waiting arms of the industrial/global community of workers.

In very general terms, students of the near future are to be continually assessed from the time they enter school to determine what function they should have within the global community. Their educational course of studies will be determined by third parties. This is the meaning of School-to-Work. Some will be prepared to assume their place in the community of workers immediately following high school. Others will be encouraged to transition on to community college for a certain level of employment designated to help sustain the local community. Sort of today's middle management classification.

Those transitioning on to a 4-year college would be those deemed worthy of higher positions within the general community or level of government. The university-trained students would be considered for positions of national or global leadership.

Whether your child is chosen for government or private-sector work, the employer, both in this country and abroad, will be assured the future employee has been given the politically correct training needed to produce a compliant, conforming, obedient worker who will recognize and accept that his worth depends upon his ability to be productive for the continuing good of society.

The student, while progressing through school, will be in a constant situation of competition with other students across the globe for the opportunity to advance and continue to be accepted in the level of education mapped out for him or her.

Now, this brings up the question of equal opportunity in education – or equity, as it is often stated. If a student is to be continually competitive on a local, national or global level the requirements for the competition must be equal. This requires education to be exactly the same everywhere or else, as the liberals like to cry, it isn't fair.

This is why the national department of education has never been dismantled as President Reagan had promised. This is why education seems to be dumbed-down, as some like to call it. No one can be allowed to advance beyond someone else, which often results in the use of the lowest common denominator.

Here is a sampling of some of the more egregious pieces of California legislation amending or adding to the Donahoe Higher Education Act, awaiting hearings:

AB 130/AB 131 both authored by Assemblyman Gil Cedillo, titled Student Financial Aid: Eligibility: Dream Act of 2011. These bills would give in-state tuition to illegal alien children if they have been enrolled in California schools for one out of three concurrent years.

This bill has already had one hearing. Assembly member Tim Donnolly, [R], a member of the Assembly Appropriations Committee was so outraged at the groups coming before his committee in support of this bill and demanding the right to have access to higher education, that he authored AB 26, Illegal Immigrants, as a counter measure.

Bills such as AB 130/131 are what makes higher education so expensive and takes ever more taxpayer funding because the students who would benefit will not be paying for this education, you, the taxpayer will be paying. Here is a list of the supporters of these two bills:American Civil Liberties Union, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, California Catholic Conference, California Communities United Institute, [this is the group listed in the Steinberg bill SB611, as being created by that bill], California Federation of Teachers, California Immigrant Policy Center, California Teachers Association, Community College League of California, Equality California, Faculty Association of the California Community Colleges, Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, Peralta Community College District, Service Employees International Union, California University of California

The following bills have not had their first hearing yet so there are no supporters or opponents listed at this time.

AB 620 by Marty Block, titled Postsecondary Education: Nondiscrimination. The author claims that there is something within the Donahoe Higher Education Plan called the Equity in Higher Education Act, which demands that the definition of gender be expanded to include gender self identity meaning the Gay and Lesbian and transgendered special interest community. This reference to gender self identity is contained within SB 48 by Sen. Mark Leno, soon to be heard in its first committee.

SB 760 by Senator Elaine Alquist, titled Donahoe Higher Education Act. This is a Spot Bill meaning that it has very little content and was submitted in order to hold a spot open on the legislative calendar to be used later. This bill would seek to amend that portion of the Education Master Plan exempting private colleges and universities from the requirements of the [1960] Master Plan and, instead, bring these schools into compliance with the state Master Plan demands for Higher Education.

SB 611 by Senator Darrell Steinberg, titled Postsecondary Education: University of California. This changes the mission and role of the 1960's-created Board of Trustees. It sets up a University of California Integration Institute - UCCII - integrating the Career Technical Education Program within the university setting.

This places the university system squarely into the hands of the federally controlled workforce development program creating advisory boards or partnerships with businesses. This creates a smooth, seamless transition from pre-K through high school to college right into the workplace.

Of course this will all be accomplished with the compliance of the parents who will be overjoyed, according to the thinking of the planners, to see that the state has been a good provider for their children's future.

AB 1237 by Brian Nestande, [R-Riverside] entitled Postsecondary Education: Funding. This bill is an attempt to counter or prohibit changes to the funding segment of the Donahoe Higher Education Master Plan and would: "state the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation to prohibit the use of state funds for remedial coursework at the University of California and California State University."

With the current makeup of the state legislature there is a simple majority of Democrats in both the assembly and the senate. Bills that do not carry large appropriations of money require only a simple majority for passage. All of these bills are slated for hearings in their respective house's education committee. Every committee has a majority of Democrats over Republicans. Unless the legislators hear from their constituents in large numbers, there is no way to stop these bills from going through to a final floor vote and ending up on the governor's desk for his signature.

Ms. Giglio serves as the legislative analyst for

©2011 Camille Giglio. All rights reserved.