Friday, January 11, 2008

Educational Testing Service Teaming Up With La Raza To Combat The Achievement Gap

The vision of ETS as stated on their website is this:
To be recognized as the global leader in providing fair and valid assessments, research, and related products and services to help individuals, parents, teachers, educational institutions, businesses, governments, countries, states, and school districts, as well as measurement specialists and researchers.
ETS and the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) are co-hosting a two-day conference at ETS to address issues related to the instruction and assessment of English-language learners and recent research that lays a foundation for potential solutions.

La Raza
has been a controversial organization as some have claimed that it supports illegal immigration. This from wiki:
The most prominent critic of the NCLR was Republican congressman Charlie Norwood of Georgia's ninth district. In a December 2005 edition of the conservative publication Human Events, Representative Norwood criticized congressional earmarking of four million dollars for NCLR housing initiatives. He said that "we ought not to send taxpayer's money to people who absolutely advocate perhaps using that money for the country not to follow the law of the land and not to secure our country's borders."[11] NCLR wrote a letter to Rep. Norwood explaining that funding is given to a subsidiary of the organization called the Raza Development Fund which provides funding for affordable housing, health care centers and educational facilities. NCLR also offered to meet with Rep. Norwood to further discuss any doubts he had about the organization or its work. [12]

On September 20, 2006, Representative Norwood issued a press release calling the NCLR a "radical [...] pro-illegal immigration lobbying organization that supports racist groups calling for the secession of the western United States as a Hispanic-only homeland" and accusing the organization of undermining "the ability of state and local police to fight criminal illegal aliens."

The NCLR immediately issued a press release to refute Norwood's claims and to demand an apology. He offered to extend an apology on seven conditions:

1. Denounce and sever all ties with MEChA and any other organizations with which they are now or have ever been associated or funded which held to the racist doctrines published by MEChA.
2. Denounce the statement "For La Raza to do [sic]. Fuera de La Raza nada" [“For the race everything, outside the race nothing”] as repugnant, racist, and totally incompatible with American society or citizenship.
3. Repudiate all claims that any current American territory rightfully belongs to Mexico.
4. Acknowledge the right of all Americans to live wherever they choose in the United States, and that no section or region of this country should be segregated by race or ethnic heritage.
5. Commit to sponsorship of nationwide educational programs to combat racism and anti-Semitism in the Hispanic community.
6. Seek neutral, third party supervision to ensure that all community and individual assistance programs offered by La Raza and groups supported by La Raza are accessible to all Americans, regardless of race or ethnicity, and that participation in those programs is fully compliant with Equal Opportunity laws.
7. Acknowledge the internationally recognized borders of the United States, the right of the citizens of the United States to determine immigration policy through the democratic process, and the right of the United States to undertake any and all necessary steps including military action to effectively enforce immigration law and defend its borders against unauthorized entry.

NCLR responded to Norwood's conditions in a point-by-point press release defending its policies. NCLR explained that it has never been racially or ethnically exclusionary, never supported and does not endorse the notion of a “Reconquista” or “Aztlán,” has never used, and unequivocally rejects, the motto “Por La Raza todo, Fuera de La Raza nada", has supported numerous measures to ensure that all Americans have the freedom to choose where to live, and stated that its programs are already covered by civil rights laws administered by independent agencies at the federal, state, and local level.[13] It also disputes the charge that it supports undocumented immigration, constantly reiterating its support for effective and reasonable border security and immigration-law enforcement. In a speech in San Diego, NCLR CEO Janet Murguía stated: "First, as a sovereign nation, the United States has the right to determine who comes and who stays. . . [It also] has a right to consider enforcement at a variety of levels, including border enforcement, interior enforcement, and workplace enforcement. . . We support enforcement... [because] as Americans, we recognize it's the right thing to do."[14]
Interestingly enough, on La Raza's website they say this (under corporate sponsors):
Large and small, corporations value NCLR’s mission, work, credibility, and passion for improving opportunities for Hispanics throughout the country. Corporations such as Johnson & Johnson, Bank of America, PepsiCo, Inc., Citigroup, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., State Farm Insurance Companies, Comcast Communications, and Verizon believe that partnering with NCLR – the largest, most influential Hispanic advocacy organization in the U.S. – expands their engagement with the Hispanic community and gives them a direct way to support vital programs that serve the community.
Additionally on their list of institutional corporate sponsors they have these companies:
The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) recognizes those corporations that have invested in NCLR’s long-term strategic efforts with multiyear, multimillion-dollar commitments, including NCLR’s Empowering An American Community Campaign.

The Allstate Corporation
Bank of America
The Coca-Cola Company
Fannie Mae
Freddie Mac
Ford Motor Company
General Motors Corporation
MBNA Corporation
PepsiCo Foundation
The PMI Group, Inc.
State Farm Insurance Companies
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Lo and behold, some of those companies (like Ford, General Motors, and Walmart) are the same companies involved in pushing forward the North American Union (SPP), through the North American Competitiveness Council.
The North American Competitiveness Council (NACC) is an official tri-national working group of the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP). It was created at the second summit of the SPP in Cancún, Quintana Roo, Mexico, in March 2006. The SPP is an agreement between the leaders of the United States, Canada and Mexico to work towards a more integrated North American economy and security region. Composed of 30 corporate representatives from some of North America's largest companies, the North American Competitiveness Council has been mandated to set priorities for the SPP and to act as a stable driver of the integration process through changes in government in all three countries.

NACC Members

U.S. Representatives:

* Lou Schorsch, Mittal
* Joseph Gilmour, New York Life
* William Clay Ford, Ford
* Rick Wagoner, General Motors
* Raymond Gilmartin, Merck
* David J. O'Reilly, Chevron
* Jeffrey R. Immelt, General Electric
* H. Lee Scott, Wal-Mart
* Robert Stevens, Lockheed Martin
* Michael Haverty, Kansas City Southern
* Douglas R. Conant, Campbell’s Soup
* James M. Kilts, Gillette
* Herman Cain, Whirlpool
Canadian Representatives:

* Dominic D'Alessandro, Manulife Financial
* Paul Desmarais, Jr., Power Corporation of Canada
* David Ganong, Ganong Bros. Limited
* Richard George, Suncor Energy Inc.
* Hunter Harrison, CN
* Linda Hasenfratz, Linamar Corporation (NACC chairperson)
* Michael Sabia, Bell Canada Enterprises
* Jim Shepherd, Canfor Corporation
* Annette Verschuren, The Home Depot
* Rick Waugh, Scotiabank

Well that's something that makes you want to go Hmmmmmm......