A new study under the Children's Health Act began in 2009 called the National Children's Study.
"The National Children’s Study is a longitudinal birth cohort observational study with the overall goal to improve the health and well-being of children and to identify antecedents of healthy adulthood by examining the effects of a broad range of environmental influences and biological factors. The National Children’s Study will produce an unprecedented amount of pertinent information and provide a foundation to analyze factors that contribute to growth, development, health, and disease to guide science and policy...The National Children’s Study leadership is committed to a data-driven, evidence-based, and community and participant informed model for decision making."
The Study will look at all parts of our children’s environment—defined broadly to include not only the air and water, but also what they eat, how they are cared for, the safety of their neighborhoods, how often they see a health care provider—to find out how these factors affect children’s health.
Data collected in the Study could help researchers and health care providers learn more about birth defects and other pregnancy-related problems, injuries, asthma, obesity and diabetes, and behavior, learning, and mental health.
The National Children's Study is led by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in collaboration with a consortium of federal government partners such as the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences of the NIH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Environmental Protection Agency.
The initial plan was to observe children in "underserved" and "underrepresented" communities and recruit women in select neighborhoods by going door to door. This proved to be too difficult to find the necessary 100,000 participants, so the strategy was changed to recruit through health care providers. This way, they could also collect information from routine health care visits by using electronic health records.
Battelle partners with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of NY (who donates to groups like the Tides Foundation and Center for American Progress), and the Joyce Foundation. Another interesting partner is Pearson, the company who is producing the scoring programs for the Common Core exams which will collect all kinds of data mining information.
Battelle is also a part of Achieve, which is funded by the same groups mentioned above, who created the Common Core State Standards in Math, ELA and the soon to be released Next Generation of Science Standards.
Arne Duncan's Chief of Staff, Joanne Weiss, did encourage different government organizations as well as states to use "data-mashing" as much as possible. With a group like Battelle working on both the National Children's Study and the CCSS and their tech-saavy partners (Microsoft, Pearson), they will be able to collect all KINDS of information on our children. Especially those in underserved and underrepresented communites.
A reminder of the education goals from the United Nations in 2012:
"Improving data collection and developing capacity for its effective use, are essential for effective policy and governance. Disaggregated data should be generated and used in addressing inequalities."
And the goals of the National Children's Study:
"The National Children’s Study will produce an unprecedented amount of pertinent information and provide a foundation to analyze factors that contribute to growth, development, health, and disease to guide science and policy...The National Children’s Study leadership is committed to a data-driven, evidence-based, and community and participant informed model for decision making."
Considering what information the government is already collecting, this can't possibly end well.