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Profile Update: The Ultimate of Arrogance

March 5, 2003

A Minnesota taxpayer wrote a letter to one of the Senate authors of the Profile of Learning clone, S.F. 639, and received a sneering response. Sen. Rod Skoe is from Senate District 2, located in the NW part of the state. He served two terms (four years) in the House, and he is now serving his first term as a state senator.

Sen. Skoe is Vice Chair of the Senate Education Policy Committee. (Capitol address: 124 State Capitol St. Paul, MN 55155. Capitol phone: (651) 296-4196, E-mail: sen.rod.skoe@senate.mn

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Dear Senator Skoe,

Please stop your efforts to hang onto the Profile of Learning. If your constituents and the people of Minnesota really wanted the Profile, we - teachers, parents, students, citizens and employers of Minnesota - would not be so vehemently against them. Please stop your efforts to change the name of the Profile as a means to keep them in place. As a teacher and parent, I want you to listen to your constituents and allow the full Senate to vote on repealing the Profile of Learning. As you play games, our students and state are rapidly losing the formerly enviable position at the head of educational excellence.

Sincerely, Mrs. Cynthia L. Westrup

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Dear Cynthia,

Who are you and why do you think that you know what all of the people in my district and the State of Minnesota want and need for their children's education.

Rod Skoe

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The above letter gives a flavor for why the Profile is still in place after years of lobbying by thousands of citizens. No other issue has generated as many letters, emails, visits, or well-attended rallies over such a prolonged period of time. But, as Sen. Skoe states, "Who are you?"

Where are the voters rallying to keep the Profile? Where are the teachers begging to keep it? (See, "A Teacher's Experience With the Profile of Learning.") There are a few, and they are the ones trotted out to prove that teachers love it. But most are dancing in the streets at the thought of possibly being free to teach again.

Last November, one school district surveyed teachers to actually find out. "Of 102 teachers responding to a questionnaire turned in Nov. 11, 73 said the standards should be eliminated, 18 said they should be revised for clarity, and 15 said they should be retained as they are," according to the Sun newspaper.

Senate leadership wants to keep the Profile, but they lack the character to say so. Let them call it what it is instead of hiding behind the deceptive marketing name of "Educational Excellence."

S.F. 639 requires that Minnesota's "new" standards be based on the Profile standards -- the national standards that brought us the revised history that denigrates our founding principles. National Math Standards brought us the fuzzy math that parents have opposed across the state. The failed national standards are based on students' demonstrating a change in attitudes, values and beliefs. One federal education agency (Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory) describes it this way: "Traditional curricula from K-high school expects students to master 'knowledge' in school. . .a thinking curriculum does not strive to produce 'walking- encyclopedias,' stuffed with facts."

Instead of knowledge, the Profile has brought intense indoctrination in our schools of a radical environmentalism and a diversity mindset that teaches that all beliefs are venerated except a Judeo-Christian point of view. (See, "Profile of Constructing Reality,")

S.F. 639 also requires "performance assessments." Remember when "performance packages" were renamed "performance assessments" a couple of years ago because the packages had acquired a stench? (See, "A Sample Project From the Profile of Learning,") Nothing changed but the name, and H.F. 639 is attempting to do it again.

Sooner or later, the Senate will have to vote. DFL leadership truly believes that they can call the night "day" and Minnesotans will believe them. We will not believe them. They are intentionally misleading the public, and it is shameful. Our children are the guinea pig kids of the Senate leadership. (See, "From a Student: Problematic Profile of Learning,")

If every Republican Senator votes against Sen. Kelley's bill and FOR the House language on the floor of the Senate, it will take only TWO DFL Senators to join them, and a real repeal will pass. That's all it will take. TWO DFL Senators who will vote for a real repeal, and the repeal will go on to the Governor for his signature.

Don't fail our kids. Be there for them when it makes a difference. That is now. We don't know when S.F. 639 will end up on the Senate floor. It may be just a couple of weeks, or it may be several. But they will have to vote on it sooner or later.

Let's answer Sen. Skoe's question, "Who are you and why do you think that you know what all of the people in my district and the State of Minnesota want?" We are the citizens who vote and pay taxes and who expect a good education for our children. That is what freedom is all about, Senator Skoe. We won't rest until we have it.

S.F. 639 is authored by:
Senator Kelley 651-297-8065 sen.steve.kelley@senate.mn

S.F. 639 is co-authored by:
Senator Skoe 651-296-4196 sen.rod.skoe@senate.mn
Senator Pappas 651-296-1802 sen.sandy.pappas@senate.mn
Senator Stumpf 651-296-8660 sen.leroy.stumpf@senate.mn
Senator Ranum 651-297-8061 sen.jane.ranum@senate.mn

Majority Leader
Sen. John C. Hottinger 651-296-6153 sen.john.hottinger@senate.mn

Assistant Majority Leader
Sen. Ann H. Rest 651-296-2889 sen.ann.rest@senate.mn

Majority Whips
Sen. Satveer Chaudhary 651-296-4334 sen.satveer.chaudhary@senate.mn
Sen. Linda Higgins 651-296-9246 sen.linda.higgins@senate.mn
Sen. Steve Kelley (See above)
Sen. Mee Moua 651-296-5285 sen.mee.moua@senate.mn
Sen. Steve Murphy 651-296-4264 sen.steve.murphy@senate.mn
Sen. David L. Tomassoni 651-296-8017 sen.david.tomassoni@senate.mn
Sen. Jim Vickerman 651-296-5650 sen.jim.vickerman@senate.mn

Get your Senate contact information.

See Senator Bachmann's press release.

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