FEDERAL ACTION

U.S. congressman and senators letter template:

Month xx, Year

Dear Congressman / Senator __________,

Forty-five states are preparing to fully implement the Common Core State Standards in the upcoming 2013–14 school year. The Common Core is one of the most comprehensive attempts to control the details of education that the federal government has ever made. The Common Core lets bureaucrats and private organizations decide what children should learn and when they should learn it, robbing parents, teachers, and local school districts of this important decision.

I am especially concerned with the federal government's role in pushing the Common Core. Federal law prohibits the Department of Education from setting specific content standards, but using the Race to the Top program, the federal government has enticed many states to adopt the Common Core and develop curriculum and assessments aligned to the Common Core. Furthermore, I am disturbed by the efforts of the Department of Education and the Department of Labor—in connection with the Common Core—to begin collecting large amount of personal information on students from their preschool years through their entry into the workforce. This is extremely dangerous for the privacy of American schoolchildren.

As a parent who has chosen to educate my children at home, it is very important to me that parents and teachers are allowed to decide what to teach their students and when to teach it. Please help stop the advance of the Common Core by sponsoring or supporting legislation that will defund the Race to the Top program and affirm the authority of the states to set education policy.

Thank you for your service to our country and for your attention to my concerns.

Sincerely,

STATE ACTION

Talking points

  • It is unlikely that you will be able to speak directly with your federal representative. If you are unable to speak with him or her, ask to leave a voicemail message. If you cannot leave a voicemail, leave a detailed message with the staffer.
  • Thank your representative for his or her service to our country.
  • Express your concerns with the Common Core, emphasizing the increased control of the federal government over educational policy, the development of standardized curriculum and assessments, and the expanding collection of student data.
  • If you have the opportunity, share why a decentralized approach to education is important to you.
  • Ask your representative to sponsor or support legislation that will cut off funding to the Race to the Top program and end the involvement of the Department of Education in the specific provisions of education policy.
  • Thank your representative sincerely for his or her time and for listening to your concerns.