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North Dakota

North Dakota Members: The Moment We’ve Been Waiting For — Urge Senator Heitkamp To Confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch Today!

By | North Dakota | No Comments

Dear Friend,

This is it. This is what we’ve been fighting for over the last year. We have a Supreme Court nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch, who believes the Constitution should be interpreted as written. He is a constitutionalist who rejects the liberal proposition of a “living, breathing document” — this confirmation will help determine the future of our Supreme Court for many years to come.

Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-North Dakota) holds an important vote, and as her constituent, we need you to contact her today and tell her to confirm Judge Gorsuch.

In a recent meeting with President Donald Trump, I, Penny Nance, promised that CWA National and our members would “light up the Senate switchboard” and make certain that his nominee is confirmed.

Together, we fought to ensure the American people had their voice heard in the election to decide who would select the nominee to fill Justice Scalia’s seat. This is the moment we have waited for, and we need your help now more than ever in order to secure the future of the Supreme Court for the next 30 or more years.

Act:

  • Call, visit and/or email Sen. Heitkamp today and urge her to confirm Judge Gorsuch. Make sure you tell her you are a member of Concerned Women for America of North Dakota.
  • Check out our Legal Studies page for an overview of Judge Gorsuch’s qualifications and for daily updates. You can also sign our petition here.

Pray: For wisdom for Sen. Heitkamp and that Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation process will be smooth and swift.

I am grateful for all of your hard work. It has paid off, and now we get to finish what we started nearly a year ago.

Thank you for your prayer and action,

Penny Nance
CEO and President
Concerned Women for America

CWA of North Dakota Calls for the Shifting of Taxpayer Funds from Planned Parenthood to Federally Qualified Health Centers

By | North Dakota | No Comments

On Saturday, February 11, I joined pro-life activists at a rally in Moorhead, Minnesota, in front of the Planned Parenthood clinic to call for the end of all federal funding to Planned Parenthood! (Click here to view Valley News Live video coverage.)

Concerned Women for America strongly opposes the funding of Planned Parenthood with taxpayer dollars.  Mario Diaz, Esq.,  Legal Counsel for CWA, stated, “The defunding of Planned Parenthood is a no-brainer now that the undercover videos from The Center for Medical Progress have shown the callous and very likely illegal way Planned Parenthood uses women and their unborn, aborted babies for profit.”

It’s time to shift taxpayer funding away from Planned Parenthood to support local Federally Qualified Health Centers.

On Saturday, February 11, over 50 men, women and children stood for justice and truth in Moorhead against the horrific practice Planned Parenthood uses to destroy the lives of babies.  “Even before the American people elected a pro-life president last November, Planned Parenthood was already feeling the pressure after they were exposed for selling baby body parts in 2015. This led to Congress investigating them, resulting in 15 criminal and regulatory referrals to the Department of Justice,” wrote CWA’s Communications Coordinator Janae Stracke in a recent article, “Planned Parenthood Ad Proves Waiting Periods Save Lives.”

Planned Parenthood receives $528 million in taxpayer dollars from the federal government.  Your taxpayer dollars are funding over 300,000 abortions per year through Planned Parenthood.   In 100 years, Planned Parenthood has aborted over seven million babies!  Ask Congress to redirect our taxpayer dollars to the Federally Qualified Health Centers that are more numerous and provide more comprehensive care for women and their unborn children.

What can you do?

Contact our two North Dakota Senators:

  • Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-North Dakota): call (202) 224-2043, email and/or write Sen. Heidi Heitkamp at SH-110 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C., 20510. Let the Senator know that you are associated with Concerned Women for America of North Dakota.
  • Sen. John Hoeven (R-North Dakota): call (202) 224-2551, email and/or write Sen. John Hoeven at 338 Russell Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C., 20510. Let the Senator know that you are associated with Concerned Women for America of North Dakota.  And, be sure to thank Sen. Hoeven for Cosponsoring S.241, a bill to prohibit Federal funding of Planned Parenthood Federation of America!

 Please Pray

  • Pray that our leaders will understand the atrocities of abortion and vote to defund Planned Parenthood.

“Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not loose heart …  It is written: ‘I believed; therefore I have spoken.’  with that same spirit of faith we also believe and therefore speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you in his presence.”  2 Corinthians 4: 1,13-14

For Life,

Linda Thorson
State Director
CWA of North Dakota
[email protected]
sd.cwfa.org

House Votes TODAY on Giving Special Rights to Those Who Consider Themselves Outside Traditional Male and Female Identities

By | North Dakota | No Comments

“In the day that God created man, He made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female, and blessed them and called them Mankind in the day they were created.” Genesis 5:1b-2

CWA of North Dakota testified in opposition to HB 1386 in the House Human Services Committee on February 1.   Click here to read the bill.

This bill concerned special rights for LGBT individuals. On February 8 the committee gave the bill a “Do Not Pass” recommendation!  Thank you for responding to our e-alert and contacting committee members with your concerns.   Our voices were heard on this important issue.

Let’s work to be sure this bill is not passed on the Floor of the House! The vote will be taken today, February 10 in just a few hours!   Please take time to make contact with your State Representative today and ask him/her to place a “Nay” vote for HB1386.  And, be sure to tell them that you are associated with Concerned Women for America of North Dakota.

Take Action:

1. Click here to find your two representatives and their contact info.  Simply put in your house number and zip code.

Suggested email or phone message:
Dear Representative ________,
Please vote “Nay” on HB 1386.  This law is not needed as all people in North Dakota are protected under our laws.
Sincerely, Jane Doe, City, ND

Or send an email to each of the email addresses of our State Representatives.

[email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]; [email protected]

2. Please forward this on to friends and family and encourage them to pray and act on this important vote.

Pray: Join me in thanking God for our state leaders.  Be encouraged.  We are making a difference.   2 Corinthians 13:11: “Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace.  And the God of love and peace will be with you.”

Thank you for your commitment to both prayer and action.  We could not do what we do without you.
 

 

 

 

Looking For a Way to Make a Difference in 2017? CWA of North Dakota Has Opportunities Waiting For You!

By | North Dakota | No Comments

What does it mean to be a Christian?  It means, of course, to love God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:36-40). In church, Bible studies and through Christian books, we often take in information about loving God.  This is wonderful, and it should be our #1 priority, but let me talk to you right now about #2, how you can love your neighbor through the ministry of CWA of North Dakota.

Consider making a difference in the lives of others in 2017 on the issues that are important to you – sanctity of life, defense of the family, education, religious liberty, sexual exploitation, support for Israel, and national sovereignty. Every one of these issues affects the life, liberty and happiness of our neighbor.   Join the team, we’ll do it together.  You are needed!

I have been asked when giving testimony during the 2017 North Dakota Legislative Session about our membership rolls.  Let’s keep Concerned Women for America of North Dakota the largest public policy women’s organization in our state!  Anyone that shares our passion for the issues above is welcome to join – women, men and teens are all welcome to participate. See below for more information.

Here are a handful of opportunities for involvement.  Whether you have a lot of time or just a little, there is a place for you. Prayerfully read through this list.

  • Continue responding to our e-alerts and forwarding them on to like-minded friends, family and pastors. It is your prayers and action that make all the difference.
  • Participate in a local Prayer/Action Chapter in your area.
  • Consider being a Prayer/Action Chapter Leader. The Prayer/Action Chapter Leader plans and oversees monthly Prayer/Action Chapter meetings in a church or community. The emphasis is threefold: pray, educate and act.  Each leader is provided with a monthly Prayer/Action Newsletter that includes an inspirational piece, legislative updates, action items, prayer items, and praises.  The newsletter is designed for use as a guide for the monthly meetings.
  • Join CWA of North Dakota for the first time or renew your membership. The suggested tax-deductible donation is $25 for a year’s membership; however, a donation of any amount is accepted for membership. Join or renew your membership online or send a check to the address below written out to “Concerned Women for America.”  Be sure to put “CWA of North Dakota” on the memo line.
  • Partner with us by giving a tax-deductible gift, above and beyond your membership donation, towards the work of CWA of North Dakota. We are run by all volunteers; therefore, all contributions go straight to the work at hand for education materials, gas money for regular trips to the state capitol, postcards for our Encourage-A-Legislator project and more.  Contribute online or send a check to the address below written out to “Concerned Women for America.”  Be sure to put “CWA of North Dakota” on the memo line.

The mindset used to be: “Is it okay for Christians to be involved in public policy?”  The question now should be: “Is okay for Christians to not be involved in public policy?” If we don’t as believers, who will?

I look forward to hearing from you!

Blessings,

Linda Thorson
State Director
CWA of North Dakota
P.O. Box 213
Park River, ND 58270
[email protected]
nd.cwfa.org

North Dakota Committee to Consider Granting Special Rights Outside the Traditional Male and Female Identity

By | North Dakota | No Comments

Concerned Women for America of North Dakota agrees with the statement about Family Integrity and the American Moral Tradition from the North Dakota Republican Platform, “Traditional American families should be encouraged and supported by policies to nurture strong marriages consisting of one man and one woman, to support moral values, and to create, control and maintain their individual wealth with minimal interference form government.” (https://www.ndgop.org/home/the-republican-platform/)

On Wednesday, February 1, I testified before the House Human Services Committee in opposition of House Bill 1386, “relating to the proposed addition to discrimination statues in the case of sexual orientation and ‘gender identity’.” Click here to read the bill in its entirety.

 This law would not protect rights but would rather grant special privileges based strictly on someone’s sexual behavior.  Sexual orientation and other manifestations of gender identity do not fit into what constitutes a true minority and should not be added to laws dealing with discrimination.

HB 1386 creates discrimination.  When “sexual orientation” or “gender identity” is added to a legal or corporate nondiscrimination code, it opens the door to policies that discriminate against people with traditional views as it attacks and opposes the notion that sexual behavior has moral dimensions.

CWA of North Dakota does not support discrimination.  We believe that all citizens should be protected equally under the law.  As Dr. Ben Carson, nominee for Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development stated, “I think all Americans should be protected under the law.  What I have said before is I don’t think anyone should get extra rights.”

Take Action: Call and/or email those on the North Dakota House Human Services Committee.  It is very important that they receive multiple calls.  Well over twenty people testified in support and only myself and four others testified in opposition.  In years past, this bill has been voted down every time it has gone before a North Dakota legislative body.  That does not guarantee that it is not in jeopardy.  They must hear from us.  Ask them to oppose special rights and to please vote a “Do Not Pass” on HB 1386. Be sure to let them know that you are associated with Concerned Women for America of North Dakota.

Committee Members:

Rep. Robin Weisz at [email protected] and 701-962-3299

Rep. Karen Rohr at [email protected]  and 701-202-1956

Rep. Bert Anderson at [email protected] and 701-641-1549

Rep. Dick Anderson at [email protected] and 701-228-4782

Rep. Pamela Anderson at pkanderson@nd.gov and 701-306-3362

Rep. Chuck Damschen at cdamschen@nd.gov and 701-370-1758

Rep. Bill Devlin at bdevlin@nd.gov and 701-524-2303

Rep. Dwight Kiefert at dhkiefert@nd.gov and 701-490-0443

Rep. Aaron McWilliams at amcwilliams@nd.gov and 701-430-9004

Rep. Todd Porter at tkporter@nd.gov and 701-667-2922

Rep. Mary Schneider at mschneider@nd.gov and 701-306-0860

Rep. Jay Seibel at jayseibel@nd.gov and 701-870-1279

Rep. Kathy Skroch at kskroch@nd.gov and 701-538-7396

Rep. Greg Westlind at gwestlind@nd.gov and 701-739-8275

As you may know, much of the media has made their position clear on this issue.  Just based on these titles it leaves no question as to their bias.  I was quoted twice in the Bismarck Tribune and a clip from my testimony was aired on WDAY ABC.

Pray: 

  • Please pray for CWA of North Dakota as we continue to take a stand on this issue.
  • Pray for a young man who spoke in favor of this bill. I spoke with him throughout the day and explained how it is the Lord that has brought forgiveness and fulfillment in my life.  Pray that he would open his heart to the love and forgiveness of Christ.
  • “Yes, my soul, find rest in God;my hope comes from Him.Truly He is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is my mighty rock, my refuge.  Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge.”  (Psalms 62:5-8)

Linda Thorson

State Director
CWA of North Dakota
director@northdakota.cwfa.org
nd.cwfa.org

State Director Linda Thorson Testified Today Before the House Education Committee in Opposition to Concerning Special Rights for LGBT Individuals

By | North Dakota | No Comments

House Human Services Committee
Testimony in Opposition to HB 1386
Linda Thorson, Concerned Women for America of North Dakota

February 1, 2017

Mr. Chairman and members of the committee,  my name is Linda Thorson, and I am the State Director for Concerned Women for America (CWA) of North Dakota.  CWA is the largest public policy women’s organization in the nation. We are here today on behalf of our North Dakota members in opposition to ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­HB 1386.

We fail to see the evidence that sexual orientation and “gender identity” meets the criteria set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court defining a minority. The Court devised a three-part test to determine whether a class of persons qualifies as a true minority: 1.) They must be defined by an immutable characteristic (unchangeable, like skin color); 2.) they must be economically deprived, and 3.) they must suffer from a history of discrimination and political powerlessness.  Sexual orientation fits into none of these requisite categories.  Instead, multiple studies show that sexual behavior is changeable, that those who practice non-traditional sexual preference are largely affluent, and that their activists represent one of the most powerful lobbies in the world per capita.

Special rights have historically been afforded to certain groups in order to ensure that individuals are not discriminated against due to immutable characteristics.  North Dakota law already protects these characteristics.  Further, the bill has no exemptions for those with personal convictions, thus forcing individuals and businesses to accept and support sexual behaviors with which they disagree.

In the case of sexual orientation and “gender identity,” the proposed addition to discrimination statutes is based on an undefined behavior.  This is a dangerous precedent affecting public policy regarding marriage, families and the culture in general. A chosen behavior should not be the basis for changing law.  Adding “gender identity” as an expression of self-image or identity not associated with one’s biological gender forces North Dakota’s employers and citizens to pretend, by force of law, that a man is a woman or vice versa based on that person’s self-perception or behavior at that given time.

This bill places sexual orientation and self-perceived gender identity not as a protected class, but as a privileged group.  Sexual orientation and other manifestations of gender identity do not fit into what constitutes a true minority and should not be added to laws dealing with discrimination.  North Dakota citizens are already protected equally under the law, and by responding to the emotions or perceived political correctness of the propaganda put forth nationwide as it relates to “sexual orientation,” defining it in law is a Pandora’s Box of faulty law writing.  The strategy behind promoting these types of unconstitutional laws across the nation is this:  Transform morality into a form of bigotry and then use corporate and government power to eliminate that “bigotry.”  The goal is to alter America’s cultural values and use “bigotry” as a threat in the process of elevating a certain group to protected status above others based on sexual behaviors.

HB 1386 creates discrimination.  When “sexual orientation” or “gender identity” is added to a legal or corporate nondiscrimination code, it is a giant step toward the adoption of policies that discriminate against people with traditional views.  If we look closely at the term “sexual orientation,” it is a radical challenge to the beliefs of all major religious faiths because it attacks and opposes the notion that sexual behavior has moral dimensions.  According to the therapeutic manual of the American Psychiatric Association, there are at least 23 distinctive sexual variations of “sexual orientation,” and perhaps many more.  It includes pedophilia, voyeurism and exhibitionism, just to name a few (see attachment).  Since the underlying concept of “sexual orientation” is that all sexual behavior is equally valid, it follows there are no good choices or bad choices, just inclination.  There is no longer any definition of the two sexes.  HB 1386 would force the acceptance of any “inclination.”  Private businesses and organizations should not be forced by the state to set aside their moral or religious principles, based upon someone’s proposed rights due to the individual’s sexual behavior.

Dr. Ben Carson, nominee for the Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, said, “I think all Americans should be protected under the law.  What I have said before is I don’t think anyone should get extra rights.”  This law would not protect rights but would rather grant special privileges based strictly on someone’s sexual behavior.  Further, those privileges would have a significant impact on the constitutional rights of North Dakotans who may have a moral objection to certain sexual behavior.  Both federal and North Dakota law already prohibits sex discrimination and sexual harassment.  If HB 1386 becomes law, it will communicate to the citizens of North Dakota that the political agenda of a few is more important than the time-honored and cherished First Amendment principles upon which our country was founded and promised to everyone.  Should sexual preference now trump the rights of free speech and freedom of religion?

It may be claimed to be politically incorrect, but should what happens between two consenting adults in privacy even be of public and legislative discussion or concern?  We think not.  If we allow “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to become a matter of laws and policies, it will reach our workplaces, our schools, our families and our children and even our houses of worship creating a society that no longer has “equal under the law” as a principle.  This will surely challenge the common sense, strength of character and founding principles on which this great nation and state were built.  The liberties we now all enjoy, regardless of sexual orientation, will all stand defenseless against this discriminatory proposed law.  It will have a negative effect on our society, removing moral boundaries and allowing the further sexualization of our public square.

Allow us to state that it should be the personal duty of all citizens to behave in such respectful manner toward fellow citizens, without being compelled or directed by law, so as to afford all the right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. We should all strive to behave in such a way.

We, again, urge your “Do Not Pass” vote on HB 1386.  Your consideration of this request is appreciated.

 

State Director Linda Thorson Testified Today Before the House Education Committee in Support of More Parental Control in the Public School System

By | North Dakota | No Comments

To the House Education Committee
In Support of HB 1389

January 31, 2017

 

Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I am Linda Thorson, the State Director for Concerned Women for America (CWA) of North Dakota.  CWA is the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization.  Education has been established as one of our Seven Core Issues on which we focus our efforts. CWA supports the reform of public education by returning educational authority to parents.   We believe excellence in academic achievement begins with the acknowledgment of parental rights.

CWA of North Dakota is in strong support of HB 1389 to respect and support the right of a parent to opt their child out of public school and any activity, practice or testing, with no interference from the state.

Parents have the authority to make decisions regarding their child’s education and wellbeing.  The purpose of the bill is to address concerns about a misguided focus on assessments to the determent of academic content instruction.   I am a retired speech language pathologist, who has worked in public school settings with students ages Pre-K through High School for 26 years.

Our school climate today places too much emphasis on federal control through mandated tests.  As North Dakota Superintendent of Schools, Ms. Kirsten Baesler, wrote in A Vision for North Dakota Schools from October 31, 2016,

“In North Dakota, we have a proud tradition of local control of education. We elect our school board members and put our trust in them. We have a chance to reinvigorate this tradition as we go about the task of implementing a new federal education law, called the Every Student Succeeds Act.

“This law gives more flexibility to our state and local education officials than we have had in more than 25 years.

“The previous law put too much emphasis on academic standards and test results as a way of measuring the quality of our schools.”[1]

She is correct about the over-emphasis on test results.  Consider our students who, beginning at a young age spend hours, days and weeks in their classrooms, often behind a computer, taking practice tests and achievement tests.  HB 1389 addresses the ability of parents to opt out of test assessments such as:

  1. Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium Tests, Practice Tests and Training Tests that cover Reading, Mathematics and Science and administered annually to all public school students in grades 3,4,5,6,7,8 and in at least one grade level selected from 9-11.[2]
  2. Interim Assessments – Which may include tests given monthly or quarterly like the DIBELS – Dynamic Indicators of Early Literacy Skills (beginning at kindergarten), STARS – Standardized Testing and Reporting including the STAR Early Literacy, STAR Reading and STAR Math[3], NWEA-MAP or Measures of Academic Progress[4], Grays Oral Reading Test and Grays Silent Reading Test.[5]

 

  1. Career Interest Inventory[6] – career interest inventory for Middle School, Career Interest Inventory for High School.
  2. Summative Assessments – The ACT,[7] including the Writing ACT and/or three WorkKeys Assessments[8] to measure essential workplace skills.

Much of the opposition to the Common Core and aligned assessments among parents is related to the amount of testing students now undergo and the fact that instructional time in the classroom is diminished. There are good assessment measures that help teachers make decisions about instruction and intervention.  Teachers and parents can use test results to improve student learning. But, as the list of tests (which is not complete) makes clear, students are under the test microscope far too often.

How did we get here? Common standards call for common assessments.  In 2009, 48 states and the District of Columbia joined together to launch the Common Core State Standards initiate.   High-stakes testing of student’s mastery of those standards is the reason for the simultaneous requirement that students in North Dakota take the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium tests. [9]

The Council of Chief State School Officers and the National Governors Association desired to unify K–12 standards through the Common Core initiative with the goal “all students, regardless of where they live, are graduating high school prepared for college, career, and life.” However, commitments to the consortia’s assessments has weakened in the last five years.  The number of states planning to use the tests dropped from 45 in 2011 to 20 in 2016.[10]  Thus, it is no longer possible for interstate comparability of student achievement.

CWA of North Dakota urges you to look at the facts.  Listen to the request of parents; enact parental directives for the administration of tests and assessments.  Vote a “Do Pass” for HB 1389.

As Superintendent of Public Instruction, Ms. Kirsten Baesler stated, “No more. This new law reinforces our authority in North Dakota to determine for ourselves how to measure the progress of our students. It gives us more room to develop their creativity and entrepreneurship, and to help them become productive citizens of our state, nation and world.”[11]  That authority begins with the respect and support of parental rights.

 

[1] https://www.sayanythingblog.com/entry/kirsten-baesler-vision-north-dakotas-schools/

[2] https://www.smarterbalanced.org/assessments/

[3] http://starsamplequestions.org/

[4] https://www.nwea.org/

[5] http://www.hmhco.com/hmh-assessments/other-clinical-assessments/gort-5

[6] https://careertech.org/student-interest-survey

[7] http://www.act.org/content/act/en/products-and-services/the-act.html

[8] http://www.act.org/content/act/en/products-and-services/workforce-solutions/act-workkeys.html

[9] http://educationnext.org/the-politics-of-common-core-assessments-parcc-smarter-balanced/

[10] http://educationnext.org/the-politics-of-common-core-assessments-parcc-smarter-balanced/

 

[11] https://www.sayanythingblog.com/entry/kirsten-baesler-vision-north-dakotas-schools/

 

North Dakota House Education Committee to Consider the Rights of Parents of Children in Public School

By | North Dakota | No Comments

Education has been established as one of our seven core issues on which we focus our efforts.  CWA supports reform of public education by returning educational authority to parents.  We believe excellence in academic achievement begins with the acknowledgment of parental rights.

Tomorrow, January 31, I will testify before the House Education Committee in support of House Bill 1389 “relating to the right of a parent to opt a child out of testing, with no interference from the state.” 

Parents have the authority to make decisions regarding their child’s education and wellbeing.  The purpose of the bill is to address concerns about a misguided focus on assessment to the determent of academic content instruction.  Our school climate today places too much emphasis on federal control through mandated tests.  In the past, it was expected the teacher would use their professional discretion to evaluate their students and decide how and when to test to reach learning goals.  Also, in the past, there was much more time for instruction and for teachers to work together on cross-curriculum projects which encouraged learning and creativity among students.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler, when speaking about the new federal education law called Every Student Succeeds ACT (ESSA), stated, “This new law (ESSA) reinforces our authority in North Dakota to determine for ourselves how to measure the progress of our students.  It gives us more room to develop their creativity and entrepreneurship, and to help them become productive citizens of our state, nation and world.” CWA of North Dakota believes that reinforcement of authority begins with the respect and support of parent rights.

HB1389 addresses the ability of parents to opt out of test assessments for their children.

CWA of North Dakota urges our State Representatives serving on the House Education Committee to enact parental directives for the administration of tests and assessments.

Take Action: Call and/or email those on the North Dakota House Education Committee.  Ask them to support Parent Rights and to please vote a “Do Pass” on HB 1389.  Be sure to let them know that you are associated with Concerned Women for America of North Dakota.

Committee Members:

Rep. Mark Owens (R-District 17) at mowens@nd.gov and/or 218-779-2320

Rep. Cynthia Schreiber Beck (R-District 25) at cschreiberbeck@nd.gov and/or 701-899-3232

Rep. Rich S. Becker (R-District 43) at rsbecker@nd.gov and/or 218-779-5736

Rep. Ron Guggisberg (D-District 11) at rguggisberg@nd.gov and/or 701-367-2736

Rep. Pat D. Heinert (R-District 32) at pdheinert@nd.gov and/or 701-222-1354

Rep. Dennis Johnson (R-District 15) at djohnson@nd.gov and/or 701-739-9328

Rep. Mary C. Johnson (R-District 45) at marycjohnson@nd.gov and/or 701-306-2037

Rep. Donald Longmuir (R-District 2) at dlongmuir@nd.gov and/or 701-629-1632

Rep. Andrew Marschall (R-District 16) at amarschall@nd.gov  and/or 701-205-2208

Rep. Corey Mock (D-District 18) at crmock@nd.gov  and/or 701-732-0085

Rep. Bill Oliver at (R-District 4) boliver@nd.gov

Rep. Brandy Pyle at (R-District 22) bpyle@nd.gov and/or 701-347-4421

Rep. Matthew Ruby (R-District 40) at mruby@nd.gov and/or 701-509-8149

Rep. Denton Zubke (R-District 39) at dzubke@nd.gov and/or 701-570-4043

Pray:  “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people” (Ephesians 6:18).  Please pray the words of my testimony will be effective.

Linda Thorson
State Director
CWA of North Dakota
nd.cwfa.org
director@northdakota.cwfa.org

North Dakota House Judiciary Committee to Consider the Value of Prayer in Schools

By | North Dakota | No Comments

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

Yesterday I testified before the House Judiciary Committee in support of House Bill 1275 “relating to the recitation of prayer at parochial or private school-sanctioned activities.”  Click here to read my testimony and here to read the bill and track its status.

House Bill 1275 is a respectable bill.  It says that if a “school-sanctioned athletic activity” is held at a parochial or private school, neither the “association nor any other entity” may prohibit prayers.

House Bill 1275 is needed. Two private schools, Shiloh Christian School in Bismarck and Shanley Catholic School in Fargo, were prohibited from having students pray over the public address system, which normally happened before every home football game. Rep. Kim Koppelman (R-West Fargo), bill sponsor, was recently quoted in The Bismarck Tribune, West Fargo Lawmaker Tackles Pre-Game Prayers in New Bill.  This is a helpful article that explains the need for this legislation.

It is very important that you contact lawmakers on the committee to voice your approval of HB 1275.  Every email and phone call is counted!  A vote is expected any day.

Take Action:  Call and/or email those on the North Dakota House Judiciary Committee.  Ask them to support prayer in schools and to please vote a “Do Pass” on HB 1275. Be sure to tell them that you are associated with Concerned Women for America of North Dakota.

Committee members:

Rep. Kim Koppleman (Chairman) at kkoppelman@nd.gov and 701-282-9267. Be sure to thank him for sponsoring HB 1275.

Rep. Karen Karls at Kkarls@nd.gov and 701-258-6836

Rep. Jake Bloom at jblum@nd.gov

Rep. Karla Rose Hanson at krhanson@nd.gov and 701-793-9181

Rep. Terry B. Jones at tbjones@nd.gov and 307-272-1915

Rep. Lawrence R. Klemin at lkemin@nd.gov and 701-222-2577

Rep. Jeffery J. Magrum at  jmagrum@nd.gov and 70-331-2224

Rep. Andrew G. Maragos at agmaragos@nd.gov and 701-852-3862

Rep. Marvin Nelson at mnelson@nd.gov and 701-550-9731

Rep. Gary Paul at gpaur@nd.gov and 218-791-0491

Representative Sharon M. Roers at sroersjones@nd.gov and 701-356-5050

Rep. Bernie Satrom at blsatrom@nd.gov and 701-252-4065

Rep. Luke Simons at lsimons@nd.gov and 701-483-0013

Rep. Steve Vetter at smvetter@nd.gov and 612-770-8689

Side note: During my testimony, two committee members asked me two different questions.  One asked if I thought there was no prayer in schools now and another asked if all of our ladies in the state support my testimony.  I kindly replied to the first with, “I am a retired teacher after being in the classroom for 26 years. I know I didn’t hear as much prayer as I heard when I began teaching.  Now, very little prayer is heard.” And to the second I said, “Religious Liberty is one of Concerned Women for America’s Core Issues.  Our members do see this as a good bill as it supports one of our Core Issues.  You may note from my testimony, we believe prayer should be permitted in all schools, including public schools.”  It is very important that these committee members hear a strong message from the women of North Dakota and that you are associated with Concerned Women for America of North Dakota!

Pray:  Please pray for each committee member by name.  Ask the Lord to give each one the courage to do what is right.

Linda Thorson
State Director
CWA of North Dakota
nd.cwfa.okrg
director@northdakota.cwfa.org