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January 23, 2016 - COUNTERACT [false] ACCOUNTABILITY: 2 Days to Launch

Just two days away now from the official launch of COUNTERACT [false] ACCOUNTABILITY

Yesterday, we gave you a little bit more of a peek at what this initiative is going to look like and what role our panel of invited judges will play in evaluating the projects you submit.

Another important piece of information: We want as MANY of these projects happening as possible. Our judges won't aim to limit submissions. Rather, they'll be evaluating project ideas based on key criteria to ensure that Resounding Books goes after funding for endeavors that have the best chance of reaching people. If that's three projects, great. If it's ten or twenty projects, so much the better. If we get 100 worthy submissions, well, gee...we would love to get that many. 

So, if you have a creative idea, are confident you have the manpower to execute it, and can keep to the budget guidelines we provide, we urge you to send us your idea. Private individual or local organization; parent or teacher; student or taxpayer; black, brown, white, pink with purple polka-dots; public, private, or homeschooler--it matters not. We want to hear from you...the informed, engaged people at the local level.

Which brings us right down to business--the announcement of our fourth judge and the unveiling of our latest countdown meme...

[bright trumpets sound]

Judge #4 is...Gail Nelson!

Gail Nelson

The founder and editor-in-chief of Learning Tangent Homeschool Magazine, Gail is a force of nature. Having started her twin boys in pre-K several years ago, she enthusiastically engaged there. Not only did she get involved as a parent, she was invited to help with music instruction. In addition to playing violin and viol, Gail dabbles in other instruments and had a great time teaching the 4- and 5-year-olds at her sons' school to play the recorder, a simple woodwind.  

When Gail's husband alerted her to what was coming with Common Core, she initially dismissed his concerns. Ultimately, however, she did some research...and then some more...and more...and more. And what she found alarmed her. When it became clear her local school district in California was intent on embracing Common Core--and that her voice as a parent was being marginalized--she did something she never thought she'd do. She pulled her boys out of the public system and began homeschooling them. (Hear Gail talk more about that decision in part 2 of a Resounding Books interview from September 2015.)

As Gail and her family settled into homeschool, they found they loved it. Yet, as she became familiar with the array of periodicals available to the homeschool community, she discovered a gap that she wanted to fill. Most of what she found was framed according to one religious perspective or another. Gail wondered why there wasn't a cross- or interfaith resource that was just, well...for everyone. Unable to find one, she set out to create such a resource herself. The result was Learning Tangent, which we've several times brought to the attention of our friends and readers. We're particularly keen on it, in fact, because not only does it share a cross-ideological mindset with own organization, but it is today the only homeschool magazine that staunchly refuses to take advertising from Common Core-aligned companies or sponsors. That's the kind of principle we admire here at Resounding Books. (Hear Gail talk more about Learning Tangent, it's founding, and it's mission in part 1 of our interview with her.)

We're tickled pink that Gail has agreed to join the COUNTERING [false] ACCOUNTABILITY judging panel. She has a heart for kids and parents from all walks of life and every educational avenue you can name. 

Many of you may be skeptically asking yourselves, "OK, but why a homeschooler on the judging panel...?" And if we know Gail, she's smiling, aware that the question is almost certainly out there. 

Todays's meme provides the answer...

Those pushing so-called education reform and [false] accountability don't just want control over the education of public school kids. They're coming for all kids. It's only a matter of how--and when--they get them.

The [false] accountability agenda is clear. Right here in Wisconsin, where Resounding Books is based, efforts are already underway to loop private school students and homeschoolers under the same accountabilty laws that harm students, parents, and teachers in the public school system. We know from talking to other activists that this same phenomenon is unfolding in other states.

The reformers are working assiduously to ensure that all exit routes are closed. They want us on their one else's. No one is meant to escape. In fact, along these lines, we recently published the thoughts of a Michigan activist, on some of the soft consequences false education reform yields for homeschoolers. 

We don't make the problem better by ensuring that everyone is bludgeoned with the same mallet. We make it better by taking the mallet away from the reformers and stopping them from bludgeoning anyone.

The fight against [false] accountability--the fight for true education--is not just a public-schooler fight. It's EVERYONE's fight.

And we need each other to win. We thus welcome all comers willing to stand and do creative battle for true education.

So, homeschoolers out there, we're hoping to see some awesome project submissions from you, too! 

More tomorrow as we finish the countdown and get ready to launch...

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