School Data Collection Bill in MO Congress

PLEASE TAKE ACTION FIRST THING THIS MORNING. We are very concerned about Mike Lair’s Data Bill HB 1157. The bill does not “protect” student data. Although it makes reference to FERPA (the Federal Education Rights and Privacy Act) which has been amended to the point it offers NO protections, it offers no provision for disclosure or consent of parents to collect certain data. It also offers no provision to limit the amount or kinds of data that will be collected on our children.

The bill causes us great worry that it will empower DESE with statutory authority to collect untold amounts of data on our children with the power of state statute. The bill appears well intended unless you understand the implications of this bill. The Missouri Moms Against Common Core are resolute that we would prefer no bill to this BAD data bill that gives license to DESE to collect our children’s data. As we were reminded recently by an expert in the field …the only “safe” data is data never collected. We believe that to be true and want to keep it that way.

Please educate yourself and then make a phone call or send an email to your representative ASAP this morning. It appears the final vote will take place on this bill in the house early. PLEASE make time to call or email your rep THIS MORNING (before noon) if you can.

Here is a link to the directory of Representatives in Missouri so you can find your rep. and their contact information:
http://www.house.mo.gov/member.aspx

Let me explain further on why we reject HB 1157:

Take a quick look at this one passage from HB 1157.
(NOTE: There are many passages we have issues with. This is JUST ONE OF THEM).

(1) Creates and makes available a data inventory and index of data elements that include any personally identifiable student data required to be reported by the state or federal education mandates and any other individual student data proposed to be included in the system with a statement regarding the purpose for the proposed collection;

First…for this bill to say it will “create” suggests that there is no data inventory on personally identifiable student data now. Second, to give license to “make available” any personally identifiable student data REQUIRED by state or federal education mandates makes you ask two questions: 1. To whom? 2. How often can REQUIRED data be mandated collected on your children? Additionally, you must remember that the heads of the state and federal departments of education have made practice of mandating education initiatives and protocol without legislative or congressional approval.

Now ask these questions:

1. What education mandates either federal or state COULD be “required” in the future? What state and federal mandates for Personally identifiable data are required now?

2. What is the intent for collecting that data? What will be done with that data and who will it be shared with once it is collected? Which agencies? Private vendors? How will they “audit or evaluate” that data?

3. It would appear that HB 1157 will open the door for the federal government to take data collected due to FEDERAL MANDATES as specified by the bill. Do we want the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT having the personally identifiable information of our children? No. We do not.

As we have been told by data experts over and over again….NO DATA is the only SAFE DATA collected. The answer is simply we do not want any more data than the already 64 data points DESE collects that are personally identifiable. THAT is enough.

If the answers do not come easily, then tell your representatives to VOTE NO. Do not open the door to “federal mandates” for data collection.

Then ask your representative if they have watched this video on the Federal Department of Education’s “DATAPALOOZA”. Ask them if they understand the intent for the “personally identifiable information” as it pertains to this event held annually. If they do not understand this, tell them to vote no.

https://www.ed.gov/blog/2014/01/education-datapalooza/

This is a letter we sent to several representatives yesterday.

Dear Representative,

The Missouri Moms Against Common Core do not support HB 1157. We believe that this bill will give DESE statutory authority to collect Personally Identifiable Information that they say they are not collecting now. In many hearings they say they only collect 64 data points at the student level. However, if you read HB 1157 the language gives DESE the authority to collect data as a result of Federal Mandates. How much is that, and what exactly does that entail? If you cannot answer those questions please do not vote for this bill.

This is one small part of the bill that we have a problem with:

(1) Creates and makes available a data inventory and index of data elements that include any personally identifiable student data required to be reported by the state or federal education mandates and any other individual student data proposed to be included in the system with a statement regarding the purpose for the proposed collection;

“CREATES”…(Does that mean there is not currently a “data inventory”?) …”makes available” (to whom specifically? How many “contractors”, “vendors”, or “agencies”?) data that include personally identifiable student data REQUIRED to be reported by the state or federal education mandates (such as?) and any other INDIVIDUAL student data proposed to be included in the system (what system?) with a statement regarding the purpose for the proposed collection (so all it takes

This section makes reference to the federal requirements of the State Longitudinal Data Systems grant obtained by DESE in 2009 for approx. $9 million. Please know that this element means that obscene amounts of PII (personally identifiable information) will be collected and shared among many federal agencies. Just read the grant it is all in there.

https://nces.ed.gov/programs/SLDS/state.asp?stateabbr=MO

Additionally, it would appear that the bill is subject to Federal privacy laws and that would/should add a layer of protection. Know this…those privacy laws have been gutted. This is what Congressman Blaine Luketemeyer is fighting about at the federal level. He is a great advocate on behalf of American children with reference to this issue. Please read his concerns about recent amendments made to FERPA at the hands of Arne Duncan without congressional approval here:

http://luetkemeyer.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=362909

The two most concerning amendments to FERPA were executed in 2008 when the first amendment was made that redefined what the word “school official” meant. With those amendments that definition can include volunteers, private vendors, consultants, and private contractors.

In 2011 Arne Duncan made an additional amendment that specified student records could be released for “non academic purposes”. As a result our kids have no reasonable expectation of any privacy. HB 1157 would only strengthen DESE’s hand to collect data that they should not be collecting now.

Please do not vote for HB 1157 and strengthen DESE’s ability to collect data beyond the 64 data points they say they collect now.

Thank you so much for looking into this bill further and understanding that FERPA is no protection at all, and DESE knows that.

The Missouri Moms would rather have NO data bill than a bad bill that does the opposite of what we want to see done. We do not want to allow DESE any ability to go beyond what they say they do now. This bill would do that.
Please vote no.

PLEASE Contact Blaine Luetkemeyer’s office to verify our concerns about FERPA.

Also: Look at the Federal Department of Education’s yearly “Education Datapalooza” in Washington, D.C. This displays the incredible amounts of student’s personally identifiable information that is collected and exploited in Washington D.C. by private entities that should have no access to this information.

https://www.ed.gov/blog/2014/01/education-datapalooza/

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