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Jun 1, 2013 by

To:  Gov. Rick Perry

Re:  Please veto HB 2103

From:  Donna Garner

Date:  5.31.13

THE PROCESS: How did I decide that HB 2103 needs to be vetoed?  First, I had to figure out which version of HB 2103 had been passed as the final bill by the 83rd Legislative Session.  Next, I read the bill in its entirety, analyzed it, wrote a summary, and included my concerns, trying to capture the most troubling aspects.


Please bear in mind that I am a staff of one, have no one to verify my articles, and do what I do because I care about the children of our state and nation.  I do not work for anyone and make not one penny from what I do. Whenever I can, I try to include documentation so that readers can verify for themselves the accuracy of my articles.



HB 2103 – Sharing of personal data with entities all across the United States


Villarreal/Branch/Seliger —



This bill if passed would be a field day for hackers!  Also, liberal-left professors will most likely take over the Centers for Education Research projects; and all of our personal data will be shared among various agencies in Texas and in other states. The data shared can go back 20 years.




Basic Fact of Life:  The further that data gets away from the original source, the less people tend to protect it.



The data can include confidential information that is permitted under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (20 U.S.C. Section 1232g).


In a Washington Post article dated 3.13.13, ( ), the U. S. Dept. of Ed. Is being sued because of the changes made to the FERPA law under the Obama administration.  Now private companies and foundations under the cloak of “promoting school reform” are allowed to get access to private student (and teacher) information. No parental permission is required, and student ID’s are linked to their private information.


A database funded by Bill Gates called iBloom, Inc. has already collected personal student data from seven states and will most likely morph into the national database under the Common Core Standards Initiative.


According to the Washington Post article, tThe information already collected “holds files on millions of children identified by name, address and sometimes social security number. Learning disabilities are documented, test scores recorded, attendance noted. In some cases, the database tracks student hobbies, career goals, attitudes toward school – even homework completion.”





This bill sets up cooperating agencies including the Texas Education Agency (TEA), the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB), and the Texas Workforce Commission  (TWC) that will share data.


Three centers for education research (CER’s) will be set up to conduct research using the data from the TEA, THECB, and TWC that goes back at least 20 years.


The data will be known as the P-20/Workforce Data Repository and will be operated by the Higher Education Coordinating Board.


The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board will establish three centers for education research (CER’s) to conduct studies and share education data, including college admission tests and data from the National Student Clearinghouse. The CER’s must operate for at least a 10-year period of time.


The Commissioner of the THECB will create, chair, and maintain an advisory board over the three research centers that must approve by majority vote all research studies and/or evaluations conducted.


The advisory board will meet at least quarterly and will be live streamed.


The Advisory Board will consist of:


A representative from the THECB, designated by the commissioner of higher education


A representative from the TEA, designated by the Commissioner of Education


A representative from the Texas Workforce Commission, designated by the commission


The directors of each of the three education research centers or the director’s designee


A representative from preschool, elementary, or secondary education


Research proposals can come from a qualified Texas researcher or from other states, a graduate student, a P-16 Council representative, or from a researcher who says the research will benefit Texas education (Pre-K through 16).


These research centers can be at a public junior college, public senior college or university, a public state college, or a consortium of all.


The data collected by these three education research centers can come from:


cooperating agencies


public or private colleges/universities


school districts


a provider of services to a school district or public or private institution of higher education


an entity approved as a part of the research project


After the three research centers are established, they must be supported by gifts and grants.


The data agreements are supposed to protect the confidentiality of all information used or stored at these centers and is subject to state and federal confidentiality laws.  However, we know there have been hundreds of hacking incidents and the free sharing of personal information by many agencies.


Basic Fact of Life:  The further that data gets away from the original source, the less people tend to protect it.



The data is not to be removed or duplicated from a research center without authorization.


State education agencies from other states can negotiate agreements for these Texas education research centers to share Texas data.


The research centers can also form agreements with local agencies or organizations that provide education services to Texas students, including relevant data about former students of Texas public schools.


HB 2103 is to take effect immediately.


Donna Garner

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