Saturday, June 03, 2006

Public tax dollars fund racist California school

K-8 institution backed by groups seeking to retake Southwest U.S.

Taxpayers along with radical groups that aim to reconquer the Southwestern U.S. are funding a Hispanic K-8 school led by a principal who believes in racial segregation and sees the institution as part of a larger cultural "struggle." The Academia Semillas del Pueblo Charter School was chartered by the Los Angeles Unified School District in 2001, local KABC radio host Doug McIntyre - who has been investigating the school for the past three weeks - told WND.

Among the school's supporters are the National Council of La Raza Charter School Development Initiative; Raza Development Fund, Inc.; and the Pasadena City College chapter of MeCHA, or Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan. "La Raza," or "the Race," is a designation by many Mexicans who see themselves as part of a transnational ethnic group they hope will one day reclaim Aztlan, the mythical birthplace of the Aztecs. In Chicano folklore, Aztlan includes California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and parts of Colorado and Texas.

The school teaches the ancient Nahutal language of the Aztecs and its base-20 math system. Another language of emphasis is Mandarin, even though no Chinese attend. MEChA, founded at U.C. Santa Barbara in 1969, has the stated goal of returning the American Southwest to Mexico. As WorldNetDaily reported Sunday, students identifying themselves as members of MEChA at Pasadena City College said they stole 5,000 copies of the campus newspaper because it did not cover their high school conference. One of the charter school's listed donors, a Nissan/Infinity dealer in Glendale, Calif., asked to be removed from the website after hearing McIntyre's broadcast about the school yesterday, the host told WND.

Marcos Aguilar, the school's founder and principal, said in an interview with an online educational journal, Teaching to Change L.A., he doesn't think much of the Brown v. Board of Education decision that desegregated American schools. Aguilar simply doesn't want to integrate with white institutions. "We don't want to drink from a white water fountain, we have our own wells and our natural reservoirs and our way of collecting rain in our aqueducts," he said. The issue of civil rights, Aguilar continued, "is all within the box of white culture and white supremacy. We should not still be fighting for what they have. We are not interested in what they have because we have so much more and because the world is so much larger." Ultimately, he said, the "white way, the American way, the neo liberal, capitalist way of life will eventually lead to our own destruction. And so it isn't about an argument of joining neo liberalism, it's about us being able, as human beings, to surpass the barrier."

Aguilar said his school is not a response to problems in the public school system, as it's available only to about 150 families. "We consider this a resistance, a starting point, like a fire in a continuous struggle for our cultural life, for our community and we hope it can influence future struggle," he said. "We hope that it can organize present struggle and that as we organize ourselves and our educational and cultural autonomy, we have the time to establish a foundation with which to continue working and impact the larger system." On its website, the school describes itself as being "dedicated to providing urban children of immigrant native families an excellent education founded upon their own language, cultural values and global realities." "We draw from traditional indigenous Mexican forms of social organization known as the Kalpulli," the website says, "founded upon the principles of serving collective interests, assembling an informed polity, and honestly administering and executing collective decisions."

Born in Mexicali in Baja California, Aguilar attended schools on the border in Calexico, a farm worker community. "We grew up with the knowledge that in Arizona, in Yuma, Arizona, everything was black and white," he said in the journal interview. "The dogs and Mexicans drank from one spot and the white people drank from the other one." Teachers in the Los Angeles area, he contended, have little regard for the culture of Hispanic children. By learning the Aztec tongue of Nahuatl, he said, students "will be able to understand our own ancestral culture and our customs and traditions that are so imbued in the language." Said Aguilar:

"The importance of Nahutal is also academic because Nahuatl is based on a math system, which we are also practicing. We teach our children how to operate a base 20 mathematical system and how to understand the relationship between the founders and their bodies, what the effects of astronomical forces and natural forces on the human body and the human psyche, our way of thinking and our way of expressing ourselves. And so the language is much more than just being able to communicate. When we teach Nahuatl, the children are gaining a sense of identity that is so deep, it goes beyond whether or not they can learn a certain number of vocabulary words in Nahuatl. It's really about them understanding themselves as human beings. Everything we do here is about relationships."

KABC's McIntyre, noting the school's emphasis on Aztec language and culture combined with test scores that fall below the L.A. school system's meager results, told WND he believes the school is bordering on "educational malpractice." "What high schools are they preparing kids to go to?" he asked. "The whole multi-culture-diversity argument is blowing up in our faces," McIntyre said. "What's lost is, we have a culture, too. But when you defend American culture - which I believe is the most diverse in the world - you are branded a xenophobe."

The school has no whites, blacks or Asians, McIntyre pointed out. According to statistics he found, 91.3 percent are Hispanic and the rest Native American or Eskimo. McIntyre said he was teaching a writing class at UCLA in 1993 when Aguilar, as a student, participated in a 50-day student takeover after Chicano activist and labor leader Caesar Chavez died. School officials eventually gave in to demands to create a Chicano-studies major and agreed to pay some $50,000 in damages caused by the protesters. Aguilar repeatedly has refused to come on McIntyre's program, the host said.


U.K.: Back to basics as maths problems multiply

The usual inexcusable use of kids as guinea-pigs shows up once again

Modern methods of teaching maths which have mystified parents and confused many pupils are to be abandoned six years after the Government forced them on primary schools. The same unit at the Department for Education which devised the strategy now wants teachers to go back to the "standard written method" it abolished.

The decision has prompted a backlash from some primary teachers and maths advisers who say children are better able to understand the concept of arithmetic when they break sums down into a series of units. They say the "back to basics" approach heralds a return to the "dark ages" of adding up, subtracting, multiplying and dividing in vertical rows without understanding what they are doing. But evidence has shown that many pupils are arriving at secondary school unable to do long division and multiplication and reliant on columns of workings out which take longer and are more prone to errors along the way.

The proposed change, put out to consultation yesterday, has already won support from many teachers on the website of The Times Educational Supplement, who say it is better for pupils to master one, simple, standard method than struggle with many. Primary schools were inundated with complaints from parents when the new method came in and some organised meetings to explain the technique. However, many parents who gave it the benefit of the doubt began to panic when their children entered the teenage years unable, for example, to divide 196 by six or multiply 56 by 27 with speed and accuracy.

The lesson plan for the numeracy hour introduced in 1999 instructs teachers to use the "grid" method for multiplication. Numbers are split into tens and units which are multiplied by each other in turn to give four totals which are then added together. In division pupils are taught to subtract multiples of the divisor until they end up with a number less than the divisor. They then add up the number of times they have multiplied the divisor and express the number less than the divisor as the remainder. Children are not allowed to "carry" numbers or put figures in vertical lines, such as 56 with x27 beneath it. They are also strongly discouraged from using the bracket form of dividing each number in turn with the answer above the line and the remainder placed before the next digit.

The proposed new framework says the techniques of the last six years may still be used with younger children, especially to help with mental maths, but that by the time they reach the age of 11, pupils should be able to use the "standard written method", by which they mean the way parents were taught.

In a joint statement, five leaders of the Mathematical Association opposed the change. "Don't let us go back to the bad old days with books full of pages of vertical sums when only a minute percentage of pupils understood what they were doing and only a third could carry out calculations," they said. National statistics for maths show that 25 per cent of 11-year-olds failed to reach the basic standard expected for their age last year rising to 26 per cent of 14-year-olds.

The decision to return to the old methods will come as a relief to many parents. Christine Turno says she dreads the twice-weekly homework with her nine-year-old daughter. "She goes ballistic," she said. "We have massive rows because she says I'm doing it wrong and she has to do it the way the school says. But she can't understand what they want and it's a complete mystery to me." A 20-minute homework session turns into an hour. Mrs Turno, of west London, said: "The teachers say it is the new way and if the answer is wrong it doesn't matter as long as she is using the right method. It's quite bizarre." Of 30 in the class, 10 get private tuition.



For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

Comments? Email me here. For times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site (viewable even in China!) here. My home page is here


Friday, June 02, 2006


The Government will fail to meet more than one in three of its vital targets in education - the policy area claimed as a personal priority by the Prime Minister. The dismal record, revealed in the Department for Education and Skills annual report, shows a range of failures in benchmarks relating to everything from reading and writing to GCSEs, under-age pregnancy and the smoking habits of young mothers. Of the 15 performance targets set in 2004, five have "slipped", five are on course and five have not been "fully assessed". Progress on outstanding targets set in 2002 is even worse, with just three of the eight milestones likely to be achieved. There is serious under-performance in all areas under the department's control, including schools and colleges, the 3 billion pound Sure Start scheme and the Teenage Pregnancy Unit.

Critics condemned the "complacent" language used in the report, published without fanfare on the department's website two weeks ago, and claimed the failures pointed to generations of children being let down. It represents a huge blow to a Government accused of an obsession with setting targets, particularly in education, which Tony Blair famously claimed as a personal crusade when Labour won office in 1997, a pledge later renewed in 2001.

One of the main education targets set by the Treasury is the requirement for 85 per cent of England's 600,000 11-year-olds to reach the expected standard in English and maths by this year. This target had "slipped", however. Current progress has seen just 75 per cent achieve the standard in maths, with 79 per cent reaching the level in English. Similarly, targets for performance in tests for 14-year-olds will be missed. They require 85 per cent of teenagers to achieve the expected standard by 2007. On current form, an unprecedented jump in results of more than 10 percentage points would be required to reach it. At GCSE, the targets require all schools to get at least 20 per cent of their pupils to the five good GCSEs marker by 2004, rising to 25 per cent by 2006. However, 42 secondaries are still struggling to get over the 20 per cent figure, while 112 schools languish below the 25 per cent mark.

David Willetts, the shadow education secretary, said: "When the Government claims that it is on target, the reality is that it has fallen behind. When it admits slippage, what it really means is failure. Instead of pretending things are better than they are, they need to urgently improve their policies."

Prof Alan Smithers, the director of the centre for education and employment research at Buckingham University, said the Government must be held to account for failing to fulfil its own target-setting agenda. "If it were a school, it would be under threat of closure. These failures must be confronted seriously by ministers."

Targets set for the Sure Start scheme have also "fallen short". The scheme has had a negligible impact on the number of mothers who smoke during pregnancy and on reducing the proportion of children living in households where no one is working. The aim of cutting teenage pregnancies by 50 per cent by 2010 is also unlikely to be met. Claims in the report that some targets will be achieved have even been challenged. The Department describes the aim of getting half of all young people into university by 2010 as "on course". Yet the Higher Education Policy Institute says that there is "no prospect whatever" of achieving this target.

Targets that have been met include boosting the stock of registered child care by 10 per cent and increasing the number of pupils who spend at least two hours a week doing PE. A spokesman for the Department said: "We are seeing rising standards, with our young people achieving record results at age 11, 14 and at GCSE. We are also seeing progress in other key areas, like adult basic skills. We make no apology for demanding targets in schools and other areas. It is what the public rightly expects."


'Scrap homework' call from Swedish Left Party

Anything to achieve the Holy Grail of equal outcomes

The Left Party has proposed abolishing homework for children up to the age of 16, saying that it wants to compensate for differences in pupils' backgrounds. Scrapping homework is one of the proposals put forward in the party's program for 'equality at school', which was presented on Wednesday.

The disappearance of homework would be compensated for with more concentrated teaching and more qualified teachers, said the Left Party's political secretary Anders Thore to Svenska Dagbladet. The party did not intend to make the school day longer, he said. Thor‚ pointed to a Teleborg school in Vaxjo, which he said had positive experiences of abolishing homework. The party argues that schools are not meeting their aim to give every pupil the same chances, and that they are not compensating for pupils' social differences.

The Liberal Party's education spokesman Jan Bjorklund described the proposal as "beyond idiotic". Unions were also critical. Eva-Lis Preisz, chairwoman of the Swedish Teachers' Union, said that politicians should not interfere with schools' homework policies. She said that politicians had an "excessive ambition" to micromanage the work of schools.


English course to be replaced by political indoctrination in West Australian schools

Some far-Left meatheads have really got into the driver's seat in Western Australia

The subject that would replace English literature in West Australian high schools encourages political and moral sermonising, according to a noted English professor who shares the concerns of teachers lobbying against the changes to the course. Poet Dennis Haskell, the University of Western Australia's acting head of English, Communication and Cultural Studies, said it was sad that the draft consultation exam for the course, called Texts, Traditions and Culture, was inherently political.

The draft exam, obtained by The Australian, asks students to consider economic rationalism, redundancy and redeployment in a passage from an Australian play. Supporting documents from the course instruct Year 11 and Year 12 students to record their responses to "mainstream texts" such as video music clips and games, song lyrics and commercial television.

Professor Haskell said the course appeared to train students in social and political commentary without allowing them to simply appreciate the "music of language". The students will be assessed against four "outcomes" called textual production, applying skills and understandings of self and society, readings of texts, and processes and strategies for exploring, developing and shaping ideas through texts. "Ironically, that kind of thing is on the wane in universities," Professor Haskell said. "You need to allow students a certain amount of innocence, above everything a certain amount of pleasure in reading and it does not appear to be offered here. "The ancient, longstanding dictum of Aristotle was that the purpose of the arts was to entertain and instruct -- this seems to go heavily towards the instruct and the entertain goes out the window, and that's pretty sad."

Some English teachers told The Australian this week that the draft exam could be passed by a student who had not even completed a literature course. "It needs a great deal of rewriting so that it is clearly a literature-based course designed to extend those students who are interested in studying literary texts and being challenged intellectually," one teacher said.

The English Teachers Association of Western Australia supports the course, despite concerns about assessment. Curriculum Council acting chief executive David Axworthy agreed a student who had not done a literature course could pass the draft exam, but was annoyed the document was facing media scrutiny. "It is getting past ridiculous that every piece of paper released by the Curriculum Council, in its consultations with teachers, has to go under the media microscope," he said. "This is a draft consultation exam, which has recently been sent to principals and heads of department so we can find out what they think about it - because we respect the views of the teachers." The Carpenter Government has announced it will work with teachers to help them better prepare for the rollout.



For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

Comments? Email me here. For times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site (viewable even in China!) here. My home page is here


Thursday, June 01, 2006


Brought to you by the people who have ruined Grade-school education

From coast to coast, states are pushing to get more 4-year-olds into classrooms like Cheryl Smith's thriving pre-kindergarten group at Cool Spring Elementary School in Adelphi. Many youngsters arrive in Room 10 speaking English as a second language and Spanish as their first. Nearly all come from homes where paying for preschool is impossible. But by springtime, after passing or nearing their fifth birthday, children in this state-funded program have formed valuable relationships with peers and Smith, gained a familiarity with letters and numbers, and developed a thirst for learning that should propel them in school for years to come. "It's almost time for kindergarten. We are ready now!" Smith's children sang one morning last week, swaying from side to side. "We have learned so much this year, it's time to take a bow!"

A few states have made public pre-kindergarten open to all; others are debating the expansion. Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) proposed universal access to pre-kindergarten last year during his campaign. But debate over a universal pre-kindergarten proposal on the ballot June 6 in California shows that widespread disagreement continues over whether the education of all 4-year-olds should be a public obligation.

Proposition 82, pushed by actor-director Rob Reiner, would require California to offer three hours of preschool a day to all 4-year-olds, with funding obtained from a tax increase of 1.7 percent on individual income of more than $400,000 and on joint-filer income greater than $800,000. Advocates say every dollar spent on public preschool will save $2.62 by lowering remedial education costs, reducing crime rates, and providing other long-range social and economic benefits.

Opponents reject the savings estimate as exaggerated and question whether the proposal can achieve lofty goals that may be contradictory -- closing achievement gaps and raising performance of all students. Some critics say helping students who have advantages will only reinforce those advantages, leaving the disadvantaged perpetually behind. Polls show that the initiative's prospects are uncertain. Many newspapers have lined up against it. "Universal preschool, like world peace or thoughtful television, is a worthy goal," the Los Angeles Times wrote in an editorial opposing the initiative. The newspaper added: "Studies make clear that preschool can be a boon to disadvantaged kids. But they don't tell us whether preschool helps more than, say, full-day kindergarten, or smaller class sizes, or family literacy classes."

Many education analysts are tracking the California debate over whether pre-kindergarten should be universal or targeted to disadvantaged kids. "From Ted Kennedy to George Bush, we have policymakers pushing to close achievement gaps," said Bruce Fuller, an education and public policy professor at the University of California at Berkeley. He was referring to the Democratic senator from Massachusetts and the president, who teamed up on the No Child Left Behind law. "The way you close gaps is to target public assistance on those children and families at the low end of the income spectrum."

But W. Steven Barnett, director of the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University, said many children who fail at school or drop out come from the middle class -- strong reason, he said, for the nation to move toward universal pre-kindergarten. Research shows that "effects of preschool education on middle-income children are somewhat smaller than on the poor, but are still substantive," Barnett wrote in an e-mail. "Studies show that poor children benefit from attending preschool education with middle-income children." Oklahoma and Georgia have well-established universal pre-kindergarten programs. They were joined recently by Florida. Barnett's institute found that 38 states offered pre-kindergarten in 2004-05, not including federally funded early education programs such as Head Start.

In the District, about 70 percent of 4-year-olds are served by preschool programs, D.C. schools spokeswoman Roxanne Evans said. Barnett's institute estimates that in Virginia, 24 percent of 4-year-olds receive publicly funded preschool through the state and federal governments. The state Department of Social Services estimate is 20 percent. Regardless, Kaine wants to increase access greatly through an initiative he calls Start Strong.

Maryland's public preschool system serves about 43 percent of the state's 4-year-olds, according to the institute. Maryland school systems have reported a steady rise in pre-kindergarten enrollment in recent years, fueled in part by funding from the 2002 Bridge to Excellence Act. In September 2003, Montgomery County had about 2,700 students in pre-kindergarten. It now has more than 3,000. Prince George's County pre-kindergarten enrollment jumped from about 3,600 to 4,900 during that time, an increase of more than 35 percent. Rolf Grafwallner, assistant state superintendent for early childhood development, said Maryland's program remains targeted to low-income students. But he said a new state law has created a task force to study broader access.

Smith, who has a master's degree in early childhood education, teaches one of five pre-kindergarten classes at Cool Spring. She says education begins in infancy. "You're preparing the child from the day they are born to the day they enter school," she said. But Smith has the children for only 180 days before they enter kindergarten. As one of those days began last week, the youngsters called out to Smith the days of the week, counted to 24 to mark the date on the calendar, spelled the month "M-a-y" and counted to 169 to mark how many days they had been in school. They studied the letter "N," cutting out examples from magazines and gluing them to sheets of paper. Andrea Reyes and Natalie Avalos, both 5, picked out the letter "N" in their names. "We're finding words all over and N's all over," Smith told them.

Some children from last year's Cool Spring pre-kindergarten program attended nearby Langley Park-McCormick Elementary School this academic year. Langley Park-McCormick Principal Sandi Jimenez said she had three kindergarten classes -- one was made up predominantly of students who had attended pre-kindergarten classes; the other two were not. She said the former class is ahead of the other two in academic and social development. "The differences are absolutely marked," Jimenez said.


"Postmodern" garbage losing clout in Australia

Prominent Leftist historian retreats after the Windschuttle onslaught on him and his Leftist colleagues

A postmodern interpretation of history that analyses the use of language and challenges the truth of historical facts has had its day, influential historian Henry Reynolds said yesterday. Declaring himself to be "an old-fashioned historian", Professor Reynolds said postmodernism had provided an interesting take on the language of history but "it just goes round and round, with lots of lights and colours and doesn't get you anywhere". "I think the postmodernist movement has gone," he told a session of the Sydney Writers Festival. "We live in profoundly different times to 1980. We live in some ways in a terrifying world where old-fashioned history and truth continue to have their great value and virtue."

During a discussion with fellow historian Ross Fitzgerald, Professor Reynolds said he believed history had a purpose, which was to search for the truth. "Truth is important. It always has to be partial, it always has to be as I see it, but that is what we have to search for," he said. After the session, Professor Reynolds said that school history courses were tending to preach rather than teach, which was inappropriate. "History can teach us to understand and empathise and sympathise with people who are different from us, either because they're (from) different cultures or of a different era," he said. "If that also makes us more understanding and tolerant, I think that's a splendid thing."

But courses such as the NSW modern history syllabus were "too prescriptive" for attempting to go beyond fostering an appreciation of different cultures and traditions. The syllabus said students will "display a readiness to counter disadvantage and change racist, sexist and other discriminatory practices". "That's probably too prescriptive," Professor Reynolds said. "It's not the central point of history, which is explaining things so people understand why others behaved the way they did. "You have to have confidence in your students. They have to make up their own minds ... otherwise it's just propaganda. It's wrong to preach at them. "I always tell my students, 'I will tell you what I think happened but you've got to make up your own mind'."

In Western Australia, the draft history exam for the new course to be introduced next year contains little examination of historical events. Rather, it requires students to analyse primary historical sources, comparing messages in the sources, identifying opinion and fact, and the nature of bias or prejudice. Professor Reynolds said he had no problem with such questions as long as the students knew enough facts to make sense of the interpretations. "As a general principle, I think for students to make sense of history, they have to have a good factual foundation," he said. "Only then can they make sense of all assessments and interpretations."

Indicative of the direction of history teaching in schools is a question asking ancient history students whether the raiding of the pyramids was analogous to sending Aboriginal artefacts, including human remains, overseas. Australia's leading Egyptologist, Naguib Kanawati of Macquarie University, said there were no similarities, saying Aboriginal culture was an existing culture with links to the artefacts. "But an Egyptian mummy is just a mummy. It should be treated as a human being, with respect, but no modern Egyptian has a spirtual link to it," he said. The other important difference was that Egyptian artefacts had left the country with the permission of the government. Professor Kanawati said the issue of respecting cultural artefacts was an important ethical consideration that should be part of a course preamble. But the study of the pyramids was not about their looting but about the magnificence of the structure and the achievement of ancient man.



Not quite, but they condemn caffeine, which is in coffee. All done in aid of their nasty kid-hating twitches

LOWER BURRELL, Pa. - A middle school student was suspended for three days for sharing chewing gum because it contained caffeine, school officials said. The girl, whose name and age were not released, gave another Huston Middle School student Jolt gum. The gum is "a stimulant that has no other redeeming quality," said Amy Palermo, schools superintendent.

Products acting as a stimulant are prohibited and possessing them is grounds for disciplinary action, and the suspension was mainly based on the girl's decision to share the gum, she said. "What if the gum had been given to a student with a heart condition?" Palermo said Thursday. The school has soda machines, but they aren't turned on during school hours and drinks containing caffeine aren't sold in the lunchroom. Jolt is manufactured by GumRunners LLC of Hackensack, N.J., and is marketed as a caffeine-energy gum.



For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

Comments? Email me here. For times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site (viewable even in China!) here. My home page is here


Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Scottish experts recognizing that there are -- SURPRISE! -- 'unruly pupils'

Schools urgently need off-site "behaviour" units to deal with unruly pupils, teaching experts have said. The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) blamed spiralling indiscipline and an official policy of "inclusion" for pupils with behavioural problems. Both, it claims, lead to difficulties dealing with uncontrollable children who constantly disrupt classes. Education Minister Peter Peacock said he would look closely at the recommendations made by the EIS.

Schools are bound to group children together regardless of ability or learning difficulty. The requirement was set out in the Standards in Scotland's Schools Act 2000. But in a report out on pupil indiscipline, the EIS claimed it had made it virtually impossible to exclude disruptive children on a permanent basis. Sandy Fowler, convener of the EIS indiscipline committee, said the effects for teachers were time-consuming, stressful and damaging for the education of other pupils.

"These challenges certainly require teachers to be more reflective about their teaching and about pupils' learning," he said. "But they also call into question the level of support that they receive from school management, from local authorities and indeed from the Scottish Executive." Mr Fowler, a teacher with 35 years' experience, added: "It is the responsibility of the Scottish Executive and local authorities to meet these requirements. "The Scottish Executive should provide, as a matter of urgency, additional off-site behaviour facilities for children and young people displaying particularly challenging behaviour." Such units would be staffed by specialist teachers or volunteers, he said.

Mr Fowler claimed all of Scotland's estimated 3,500 primary and secondary schools had been affected by indiscipline to some degree. Mike Finlayson, director of Teacher Support Scotland, backed the EIS comments and said 90% of teachers thought indiscipline had got worse over the last five years. He added: "Indiscipline over a protracted period of time, even at apparently low levels, can have a devastating effect on the health of individual teachers. "This can lead to anxiety, depression and illness. "The unique pressures teachers experience are still not recognised and support for them remains inadequate."

James Douglas-Hamilton MSP, Conservative education spokesman, said: "The presumption in favour of mainstreaming has created a number of new problems and power needs to be given back to teachers. "At the moment they do not have powers to permanently exclude disruptive children from class. "Teachers must be put back in control of the classroom."

Responding to the report, Mr Peacock said: "I want to see teachers everywhere benefiting from the experience and practices of the strongest leaders and most effective techniques. "I also welcome the recognition that there is now an unprecedented level of activity dedicated to seeking solutions to these difficult issues. "Nonetheless, I will look closely at their recommendations for the executive, many of which we are already working on or have made provision for, and I look forward to continuing this constructive dialogue with EIS over coming months."



The academics below are addressing the claim that State school pupils have to be brighter to get the same High School results as private school students

Oxford academics have challenged the belief that state-educated pupils perform better at university than those who have been privately educated. Their study suggests that at Oxford and Cambridge, A-level grades accurately indicate success and that admissions tutors should not be more lenient towards those from state schools. Oxford and Cambridge took a smaller proportion of entrants from state schools in 2004 than the previous year, despite government pressure.

The academics, writing in The Oxford Magazine, noted that research published by the Higher Education Funding Council for England in 2003 had shown that, given equal A-level scores, a higher proportion of graduates from state schools achieved a 2:1 than those from the independent sector. Dr N.G. McCrum, Emeritus Fellow of Hertford College, Dr C.L. Brundin and A.H. Halsey, Emeritus Professor of Social and Administrative Studies, said that at Oxford and Cambridge this was not the case. Looking at A-level scores and finals scores of graduates between 1976 and 2002, they concluded that, overall, A-level results determined finals results. "For both types of school for both genders at Oxford and Cambridge, A level dictates finals score, except in the sciences for males," the dons wrote. "This is surely a boost for the use of A level in the admissions exercise."

In other words, Oxbridge colleges should not expect state school students to do better than their privately educated peers with the same grades, except if they are male and studying science at Oxford. Conversely, privately educated men studying science at Cambridge also had a lead; traditionally, scientists from private schools have gone to Cambridge.

The academics insist they are making "no comment on the intrinsic value of different institutions and courses". Dr Brundin, who taught engineering at Oxford and was Vice-Chancellor of Warwick University, said of the funding council: "We're saying we can't challenge their study as a whole, but that we cannot say it applies to a single institution and in particular, it does not apply to Oxbridge." The study, which corrected A levels for grade inflation over the decades, showed that a pupil who achieved two A grades and a B grade would continue to do less well in the finals - whatever their background, except as a man studying science - than a student who achieved three A grades.

John Thompson, an analyst for the funding council, argued that the Oxford academics had "not fully appreciated" its findings. "Overall, if you make a comparison, keeping everything the same, state school students do a little better," he said. At the most selective universities, including Oxbridge, he said, the picture was less clear. Advocates of widening participation have argued that the findings of the council made the case for tutors being more lenient when admitting comprehensive pupils to the top universities. The latest study appears to favour a system where students are measured entirely on their A-level grades.



For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

Comments? Email me here. For times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site (viewable even in China!) here. My home page is here


Tuesday, May 30, 2006

What if your child is being left behind by design? Evidence that local educators withholding federal funds purposely

Imagine being the parent of a child enrolled in a school that isn't working. You can't send him to a private school because you can't afford it, nor to another public school because there's no room. Every day he comes home from school depressed and disengaged. You do what you can. You visit with his teachers. You help with his homework. But you aren't a teacher. And his teachers, good people, are too busy to focus on your child. Slowly, he is drifting away.

Now imagine being told that your child is eligible for free tutoring after school, on weekends, whenever and wherever convenient. You are told that the tutoring will focus on reading and math, that it will be based on the needs of the child, and that those providing the service have been certified by the state as qualified to tutor. You learn that the services will be aimed at making sure your child can read and calculate at his grade level and ensuring he is prepared to do well on the state's school assessment. Most important, the tutoring will help him be promoted to the next grade ready for success.

What would be your response? Could you possibly say "no, thank you" to such an offer? And yet that is what the people in charge of a huge number of America's public schools would have us believe has been the response of parents around the country to this guarantee of supplemental educational services, which is contained in the landmark No Child Left Behind Act. These school administrators claim that of the 1.4 million children eligible for such tutoring during the past school year, only 233,000 (17 percent) had parents and guardians who found this offer worthy of acceptance. All the rest apparently declined free tutoring for their children.

That is simply preposterous. The No Child Left Behind Act holds out the promise that children attending schools that fail to make adequate yearly progress toward academic proficiency for all students in reading and math will have access to tutoring services paid for with federal dollars. For the first time in more than 40 years of federal education policy, dollars are going directly to serve the academic needs of students rather than the schools the students attend. The law says schools and school districts are to set aside money equal to 20 percent of their federal Title I funds for these tutoring services. It says the schools are to notify parents of their children's eligibility for the services, inform them of the names and varieties of tutoring services available, and make it easy for parents to enroll their children for the services.

But in far too many places this simply isn't happening. Why would only 17 percent of eligible children be enrolled in this program? Said U.S. Education Secretary Margaret Spellings, "Too many parents never hear about these options because they don't see the letter that comes home in their child's backpack or they can't attend the informational meeting at the school. All of us — from the federal government to the states to districts to schools — must do a better job of reaching out to inform parents about their options."

Here is what Spellings did not say: In far too many places, it's not the parents' fault or an oversight that's to blame. It is the people in charge of the schools, who, in far too many cases, think that the money set aside for free tutoring is money that ought to stay with their schools and districts instead — that it's their money to manage as they see fit. And so they come up with ways to make access to the services difficult for parents. They don't disobey the law; they just don't abide by it.

The tactics can be quite subtle. In some places parental notification comes late, in letters full of legal and policy jargon and language encouraging families to refrain from signing up. Perhaps parents are given only a few days to make a decision or are told they will need to be at a certain place at a certain time to enroll their child. Maybe they are informed that the services can't be delivered at their child's school and that they will need to find their own way to get their child to and from the tutoring program. Potential providers of tutoring might be told that they can't talk to parents about what they do, or to principals, or to teachers. They might be told they must serve a certain number of kids at a certain rate at a certain place and time. Whatever it takes to make it difficult for children to get the free help they deserve and need — whatever it takes to keep control of the money.

Too many children in this country are failing to get the education they need and deserve. What a tragedy it would be if, years from now, we learned that those responsible for providing that education to our children were the very ones responsible for their not getting it.


Western Australia: Teachers in line of fire over boycott of postmodern rubbish

The West Australian Government has threatened to empty entire high school departments of rebellious teachers who are refusing to implement its new-age gradeless curriculum. The State School Teachers Union yesterday made good its threat to boycott the 17 new subjects in a range of government high schools next year, issuing a directive to faculties to treat the new courses as voluntary. The union representing private school teachers pledged to do the same, creating a dilemma for the Carpenter Government as it attempts to roll out the controversial new courses in all high schools next year.

Acting Premier Eric Ripper yesterday warned teachers that he expected them to "do their job" and teach the new "outcomes-based education" courses as per government orders. If they did not, he said, they could be forced to teach lower years than Years 11 and 12 where the new courses are due to be introduced. Education Minister and former teacher Ljiljanna Ravlich has attempted to keep a low profile as the curriculum crisis engulfs the Government and was again unavailable for comment yesterday. But Mr Ripper, who is Ms Ravlich's long-time partner and also a former teacher, rose to her defence. "Outcomes-based education is the way of the future," he said. "The Government expects teachers to do their job." He then issued a threat to mutinous teachers, saying that if any were uncomfortable with the new courses for years 11 and 12, there would be "plenty of spots in years 8 and 9" for them to teach.

Opposition education spokesman Peter Collier, a former high school teacher, said Ms Ravlich was out of touch and the Premier should step in. "The only resolution is to delay the implementation of all 17 courses until the endemic problems are resolved and then you have full implementation by 2008," Mr Collier said.

Under the new curriculum, all subjects are equal, meaning a top performance in cooking and dance could help a student into a university law degree, ahead of those who studied physics and chemistry. Supporters say the courses are more inclusive and recognise a wider range of achievement. Critics such as the teacher lobby group People Lobbying Against Teaching Outcomes claim the courses lack substance and say that assessing students against eight new "levels" of achievement is subjective and not as accurate as giving them grades or percentages.

The State School Teachers Union's directive yesterday means high school departments that are not ready will continue teaching the present curriculum next year. Entire departments at private schools are also expected to boycott the new subjects, according to the Independent Education Union of Western Australia. Its state secretary Theresa Howe said there were "system-wide" concerns about the courses. The architect of the new courses, the state Curriculum Council, was last night reeling from the news that its planned rollout was in jeopardy. Acting chief executive David Axworthy said the council needed time to discuss the implications of the union's directive.



For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

Comments? Email me here. For times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site (viewable even in China!) here. My home page is here


Monday, May 29, 2006

A better way to prevent student cheating

If faculty cast cheating as an issue of justice, they won't have to play cop

As another academic year draws to a close, amid a rushed flurry of final exams and term papers, it's time for professors to play their least favorite role: cop. With some surveys finding that up to three-quarters of college students cheat, faculty and administrators are making a bigger push for integrity. What most still lack, however, is a compelling moral argument against cheating.

A growing number of universities have enacted honor codes, but many of these codes - along with campus efforts to publicize them - fail to make a strong case for why cheating is wrong. Often they invoke fuzzy ideals of honor or, conversely, dwell on the negative consequences for cheaters who are caught. Neither approach gets very far - not these days, anyway.

Honor, with its emphasis on doing the right thing for its own sake, is no match for the anxious cynicism of many college students. This point was driven home to me by a junior I met last year in North Carolina. Why not cheat, he argued, given how many of America's most successful people cut corners to get where they are? Cheating is how the real world works, he said. Look at the politicians who lie or the sluggers who take steroids, or the CEOs who cook the books. The student also pointed to the hurdles he faced as he tried to get ahead: high tuition costs, heavy student loans, low-paying jobs without benefits. America wasn't a fair place for kids like him, so it made sense to try to level the playing field by bending a few rules.

Many young people take this bleak view. A 2004 poll of high school students found that 59 percent agreed that "successful people do what they have to do to win, even if others consider it cheating." Young people believe in honor and value integrity; they also worry that living by these beliefs could mean ending up as a loser. In justifying her cheating, one student told a researcher: "Good grades can make the difference between going to medical school and being a janitor." Few professors have a ready retort to this logic.

Appeals to self-interest only worsen the problem. If you tell a student that she shouldn't cheat because she might get caught, or that she's "just cheating herself" by not learning the material, or that integrity is an asset in life to be cultivated, she might respond - as the student I met in North Carolina did - by spelling out the ways that successful cheating could advance one's self-interest, especially if "everybody else" is doing it.

Students with a strong sense of right and wrong, learned early in life, may be more willing to sacrifice personal advancement for the sake of their values. Some research has shown, for instance, that students with a theistic outlook are less likely to cheat. But most colleges aren't in the position to reshape students' character at this level. Likewise, our universities have limited influence over the broader socioeconomic trends that help fuel cheating, such as rising economic inequality and increasing middle-class insecurity.

What can faculty and administrators do to stem epidemic cheating? Their best hope is to cast cheating as an issue of justice. Students may be cynical about what it takes to succeed these days, but they do care about fairness. And cheating is nothing if not unfair. Cheaters get rewards they don't deserve, like scholarships, admission to college or grad school, internships, and jobs. Cheating is the antithesis of equal opportunity - the notion that we all should have a fair shot at success and that the people who get rewarded are the people who deserve those rewards because they worked the hardest.

Many students understand that the ideal of equal opportunity is threatened in an era of rising inequality. Quite a few say they want to do something about this. Anticheating efforts offer a way to build, on campus, a microcosm of the kind of society they want to live in - one with a level playing field for all. Some students see this and are organizing to fight cheating. Maybe academic integrity will never become a great campus cause. But if faculty can cast this issue as a matter of justice, and empower students to take action, perhaps some day they won't have to spend so much time playing cop.


U.N. making homeschooling illegal?

Threat seen from U.S. judges who bow to child-rights treaty

A U.N. treaty conferring rights to children could make homeschooling illegal in the U.S. even though the Senate has not ratified it, a homeschooling association warns. Michael Farris, chairman and general counsel of the Home School Legal Defense Association, or HSLDA, believes the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child could be binding on U.S. citizens because of activist judges, reports LifeSite News.

Farris said that according to a new interpretation of "customary international law," some U.S. judges have ruled the convention applies to American parents. "In the 2002 case of Beharry v. Reno, one federal court said that even though the convention was never ratified, it still has an impact on American law," Farris explained, according to LifeSiteNews. "The fact that virtually every other nation in the world has adopted it has made it part of customary international law, and it means that it should be considered part of American jurisprudence."

The convention places severe limitations on a parent's right to direct and train their children, Farris contends. The HSLDA produced a report in 1993 showing that under Article 13, parents could be subject to prosecution for any attempt to prevent their children from interacting with material they deem unacceptable. Under Article 14, children are guaranteed "freedom of thought, conscience and religion," which suggests they have a legal right to object to all religious training. Further, under Article 15, the child has a right to "freedom of association." "If this measure were to be taken seriously, parents could be prevented from forbidding their child to associate with people deemed to be objectionable companions," the HSLDA report explained.

Farris pointed out that in 1995 the United Kingdom was deemed out of compliance with the convention "because it allowed parents to remove their children from public school sex-education classes without consulting the child." Farris argues, according to LifeSiteNews, that "by the same reasoning, parents would be denied the ability to homeschool their children unless the government first talked with their children and the government decided what was best. This committee would even have the right to determine what religious teaching, if any, served the child's best interest."

Offering solutions, Farris suggests Congress use its power to define customary law and modify the jurisdiction of federal courts. "Congress needs to address this issue of judicial tyranny by enacting legislation that limits the definition of customary international law to include only provisions of treaties that Congress has ratified," he said. Farris also suggested Congress could pass a constitutional amendment stating explicitly that no provision of any international agreement can supersede the constitutional rights of an American citizen. He pointed out two such amendments have been proposed in Congress.

Finally, he says specific threats to parental rights can be solved by "putting a clear parents' rights amendment into the black and white text of the United States Constitution."



For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

Comments? Email me here. For times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site (viewable even in China!) here. My home page is here


Sunday, May 28, 2006


Florida's Constitution requires the state to maintain a uniform system of free public schools. It doesn't say that this system must be the only education policy the state adopts, just that such a system has to exist. But that's not how the state Supreme Court read it when five of its justices struck down the Opportunity Scholarships school voucher program in January. They inferred that because the Constitution mentions a uniform public school system, it automatically forbids any alternatives.

This puts the state's elected representatives in a bit of a bind, because the Constitution also demands that Florida's education system be "efficient, safe, secure, and high quality," allowing students "to obtain a high quality education." The problem is that a one-size-fits-all education system isn't the best way to provide efficiency, safety, or high quality, no matter how the Court chooses to interpret the Constitution.

Consider, for instance, that Florida's public schools spend around $8,000 a year, per pupil -- more than one-and-a-half times the average independent school tuition. That doesn't exactly make the public system look like a paragon of efficiency. Of course, some independent schools have revenue sources other than tuition, but in a forthcoming study of Arizona I find that even after considering non-tuition revenues, independent schools still spend far less than the public schools.

As for safety, one out of every 12 Florida students reported having been threatened or injured with a weapon at school in 2003, according to a recent federal study.

Finally, high quality has also proven elusive. Sure, test scores on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) often go up from year to year, but if you got to perform your own employee review, don't you think your ratings would go up, too? The FCAT is designed and administered by the same system that it is supposed to evaluate. Nice work if you can get it.

To really get at the truth, it's better to use more objective performance measures like graduation rates or SAT scores. And the truth isn't pretty. According to two independent studies of the nation's public school graduation rates (one by the Urban Institute, another by the Manhattan Institute), Florida falls between sixth-to-last and second-to-last place among the states, depending on how you crunch the numbers. And Florida's SAT scores? They are below average in Math and far below average on the Verbal portion of the test -- results that can't be explained away by demographics. Even Floridians whose first language is English have Verbal SAT scores 15 points below the nationwide average for such students.

So despite decades of improvement efforts, it would be hard to argue that Florida's "uniform" public schools are the efficient, safe, high quality institutions that the Constitution demands.

Ironically, they aren't particularly uniform either. Nassau County schools spent a little over $6,200 per pupil in 2003. Hamilton county spent upwards of $13,600. Is that uniformity? Nassau's test scores are usually quite high, while Hamilton's are generally low. Not a lot of uniformity there either.

With results like these, it seems reasonable to ask if there are alternatives to the status quo that would do a better job of fulfilling children's needs. Reasonable, but illegal. Thanks to the state Supreme Court, state legislators are not allowed to color outside the lines. If they do, no matter what kinds of education alternatives they come up with, they'll likely get rapped on the knuckles by the judiciary. This makes no sense. The legislature is being asked to squeeze efficiency, safety, quality, and uniformity out of a school system that is still not especially efficient, safe, high-quality, or uniform despite having been around for more than a century.

You don't have to be an advocate of any particular education reform to recognize the seriousness of this problem -- or to see the solution. An amendment to the Florida Constitution explicitly allowing representatives to consider alternative educational options would free them from the straightjacket into which the Supreme Court has forced them. In the process, it might finally give all Florida children a real chance at that safe, efficient, high quality education they've been promised.

More here

Few of the English can now write good English

People who can string a sentence together grammatically could be forgiven for feeling like old fogeys, reports Kevin Donnelly

The British wartime prime minister Winston Churchill is considered one of the 20th century's greatest political orators. An important reason why Churchill was able to communicate so effectively was because, when at school, he was taught how to write. As observed in his autobiography: "I got into my bones the essential structure of the ordinary British sentence, which is a noble thing." Judging by a British report on undergraduate writing skills by the Royal Literary Fund, it would appear the ability to structure an essay and to master the basics of syntax and grammar are things of the past.

The report, Writing Matters, outlines the observations of about 130 professional writers who worked on a one-to-one basis with undergraduates in 71 universities. The writers conclude that considerable numbers of students, even at some of Britain's leading tertiary institutions, arrive at university without the skills necessary to make the most of their education. "In many cases, the problems occur at a basic level: poor vocabulary, inaccurate phrasing, bad syntax, incorrect punctuation [and] an inability to form well-structured sentences," the British report notes. The report also states that many students are incapable of sustaining a consistent and coherent argument in prose.

Falling standards and dumbed-down English are not restricted to Britain. Last year's report, Remedial or Rhetorical English?, in which academics at the Australian Defence Force Academy tested the writing skills of about 600 undergraduates, also discovered significant weaknesses. "Written work was characterised by common grammatical errors and knowledge gaps, an inability to select stylistic devices to express relationships between ideas and purpose, and difficulties in producing complex written texts while demonstrating control over generic structure," Fiona Mueller, one of the authors of the ADFA report, says.

Baden Eunson, from the English department at Monash University, also notes that many undergraduates have gone through six years of secondary school without learning the fundamentals of English: "I teach professional writing at Monash University and I have to spend far too much of my scarce curriculum time cramming the basics into my students."

Concerns about poor writing skills, especially basics such as spelling, punctuation and grammar, are not restricted to undergraduates. Beatrice Booth, the president of Commerce Queensland (the state chamber of commerce), has publicly criticised literacy standards and was recently quoted as saying, "We have a plethora of people who can't spell, comprehend what they are reading or write a proper sentence."

Notwithstanding the evidence, some argue that there is no crisis and that approaches to teaching English, especially literacy, are beyond reproach. The children's author Mem Fox, based on Australia's strong performance in the Program for International Student Assessment, a test of 15-year-old students in literacy, mathematics and science, argues: "We don't have a literacy problem. We have a very high literacy rate. We are absolutely sensational in this country. "So we always come either second after Finland, or third after Canada, or fourth after New Zealand. But we are always in the top four, always."

What Fox ignores is that the PISA test did not correct or penalise students for mistakes in spelling and grammar, and that if students had been corrected, many would have failed. "Errors in spelling and grammar were not penalised in PISA; if they had been, probably all countries' achievement levels would have gone down, but there is no doubt that Australia's would have," one Australian researcher says. "It was the exception rather than the rule in Australia to find a student response that was written in well-constructed sentences, with no spelling or grammatical error."

The Australian Association for the Teaching of English also argues that concerns about falling standards are a media beat-up and that present approaches to English teaching, such as whole language, critical literacy and postmodern theory, are not the reason many students leave school unable to write a grammatically correct, fluent and well-structured essay. The AATE is also wrong. Much of the focus on teaching literacy in schools is on so-called critical literacy, where students are taught to analyse texts in terms of power relationships from a range of theoretical perspectives, including Marxist, feminist, postcolonial, postmodern, class and race. As noted by Eunson, when comparing today's syllabuses and examination papers with those of the 1960s, the reality is that more traditional approaches, including precis, discussing definitions and word meanings, and analysing comprehension passages grammatically, have long since disappeared.

At the primary school level, judged by curriculum documents, the prevailing approach, with the exception of NSW, belittles the more structured phonics model of teaching reading in favour of whole language. Teacher training is also a concern, evidenced by a 2001-02 national survey of 680 beginning teachers that found only "half of the new graduates indicated that they felt prepared to teach spelling and phonics".

That teacher training has suffered is understandable. Those in charge of Australia's schools of education, the Australian Council of Deans of Education, in New Learning: A Charter for Australian Education, argue that the basics, represented by the three Rs, are obsolete, old fashioned and irrelevant. The deans argue in favour of the new basics: "Nor is literacy a matter of correct usage [the word and sentence-bound rules of spelling and grammar]. Rather, it is a way of communicating. "Indeed, the new communications environment is one in which the old rules of literacy need to be supplemented. Although spelling remains important, it is now something for spell-checking programs, and email messages do not have to be grammatical in a formal sense."

This ignores the ability to use language that does not happen intuitively or by accident and that spell-checking cannot differentiate between whether and weather or their and there. Not only do students have to be taught and regularly practise the rules of grammar and correct composition, they must be given the technical vocabulary that will free them to more consciously control what it is they wish to write.


UK: Inquiry rejects high-security schools "The head of a government inquiry into pupil behaviour has rejected demands for airport-style security to be set up in schools in the wake of the murder of 15-year-old schoolboy Kiyan Prince. Sir Alan Steer, the headteacher of Seven Kings High School in Ilford, Redbridge, warned such a move 'might actually create more problems than you solve.' ... 'You would create a certain atmosphere in schools,' he said at a conference organised by the National Union of Teachers on pupil behaviour. 'Schools should be comfortable, warm, sociable places, and you've got to get the balance right between security and creating the right atmosphere.' Sir Alan pointed out that Kiyan was knifed to death outside the school -- and therefore any airport-style security check would not have helped him."


For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

Comments? Email me here. For times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site (viewable even in China!) here. My home page is here