Tuesday, May 07, 2013

#StopCommonCore Rally Draws 9.7 Million

Prepare ye the way of the Common Core. And then the Word will be made Fed. And Obama will dwell amongst us forever. Amen. -- From the Book of Common Core

Parent Led Reform, in collaboration with Truth in American Education, hosted a second rally via Twitter Thursday May 2nd to stop the implementation of Common Core standards. Common Core standards are national, top-down K-12 education ideology imposed by federal and state government. The #Stopcommoncore Twitter rally reached of nearly 9.8 million Twitter users. The traffic was so heavy and the complaints from liberals so loud that Twitter temporarily suspended the Twitter account of Parent Led Reform.

"The response to our second #stopcommoncore Twitter rally was amazing,” says Shane Vanderhart, spokesperson for Truth in American Education. ”Parents and concerned citizens are awakening to this previously unknown revolution in education called the Common Core State Standards.  'We the people' are starting to have our voices heard.  Last night we sent a strong message that education policy can not be decided by a handful of elites.  'We the people' through our elected representatives must have a say.  Our kids deserve real reform, not a data-less, untested fad."

So prepare ye the way for the final federalization of primary education in the USA- hereafter known as Common Core- and don’t worry so much about relics written by old, white men like the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. The Tenth Amendment only helps ensure local control of those things like education policy. It only ensures that we have a big, diverse, vibrant country full of lots of good ideas. And lots of really great ideas too.

That’s so 18th, 19th and 20th Century.  Local community, you see, is overrated. It takes a Big-Assed Village now to dumb down a child. And it takes a federally-deputized standing committee of state representatives that work for Common Core like healthcare exchanges work for Obamacare.

And good ideas are overrated too—seemingly-- when you have Big Box Government run by Big Blockheads just waiting to wholesale cut-rate ideology, disguised as education, at astronomical prices.

Here’s how it’s supposed to work: Under Common Core a small group of union stooges, educrats and crony-crats from each state will get together and decide the newest version of No Child Left Behind. They will then impose it on the rest of us in the name of the federal government.

Everything taught will have to get the stamp of approval from the Communist Core, uh, Common Core-o-crats made up of various people who have already screwed up education in their own states.

Doesn’t that seem much better than leaving it to parents and school boards at the local level as prescribed under the Tenth Amendment?        

I mean, after all, weren’t those Tenth Amendment guys part of that “patriot” militia that bombed the British in Boston and resisted federal gun control in wake of the Boston Massacre?

And you thought you knew history?  Ha!  Wait until Common Core gets a hold of it.        

Despite record amounts of evidence that federalizing everything from banking, to healthcare, to immigration policy, to student loan financing is screwing up our economy, our society, the creation of jobs and wages --and the financial prospects for our youngest workers—that hasn’t stopped the push for top-down federal “standards” in order to hold schools “accountable.”

Algebra? It’s out. Really. Algebra will be pushed out of middle schools under Common Core.

Under Common Core, a kind of education Death Panel,made up of some of the biggest liberal education crony-crats from each state, will likely replace Algebra by Howard Zinn’s The People’s History of the United States.  The People’s History was written by a real, live socialist/anarchist. Really, it was, even though now he's dead.  

The History is SO bad that it’s won the critical acclaim of Matt Damon and my son’s 7th grade history teacher.    

And what else would you expect from the federal government? 

This is the same federal government that now loans more money to people than private banks do, and thereby ensures the anemic pace of economic and jobs growth.

You see when the government largely turns education over to union stooges and education technocrats that have produced such poor results for teachers, children and parents, it’s a benefit to the government, not a sin.

Because it’s not results the government is after; it’s control.  Result actually could get in the way. If you spoil people by getting them used to actual results, soon there is no room for ideology.

And above all else Common Core is ideal at ideology—and nothing else.

“We have the attention of ordinary citizens and elected leaders alike and that puts us in a unique position,” said Karin Piper, Founder and Executive Director for Parent Led Reform. “We either simply objected to this federal overreach and left it at that - or- we actually do something about it. And we would rather give it our all and fix education for our kids than pick up our toys and go home.”

Did I tell you they are getting rid of Algebra in middle school? Really, they are.    

Remember these are the folks who told you that abortifacients have to be made available, over-the-counter, to every girl old enough to plop down the money for it, whether her head reaches the counter top or not. 

So what’s a little mathematics when Alienation Studies have gone a wasting for so long?

It’s not like federally-subsidized and alienated groups go around bombing Boston like those Tenth Amendment guys did.


Justice Clarence Thomas Defends Segregated Schools: ‘My High School Was Not Inferior’

He is speaking of days before the welfare explosion

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas defended all-black schools during a recent discussion at Duquesne University Law School in Pittsburgh, saying one cannot assume something is “inferior” because it is “predominantly one group or another.”

“My high school was not inferior. My neighborhood was not inferior. My church was not inferior. My family was not inferior. I have never believed it, and I never will,” Thomas, the second African-American to serve on the high court, said during a discussion on April 9.

“One thing Justice you wrote later in a case called Jenkins that I’d like you to comment on is you said you wrote, ‘It never ceases to amaze me that the courts are so willing to assume that anything that is all black must be inferior.’ Would you comment on that?” Thomas was asked.

In the 1995 case of Missouri v. Jenkins, the Supreme Court ruled that a District Court exceeded its authority by requiring Missouri to correct racial inequality in schools through salary increases and continued funding of remedial education programs.

Thomas said he didn’t believe the notion that anything that was all black was inferior, noting his own upbringing in the small black community of Pin Point, Ga.

“Well I think it speaks for itself. It’s true,” the Supreme Court justice said when asked about his comments regarding Missouri v Jenkins. “Our schools were closed, because people said they weren’t as good, because they were all black. I didn’t believe any of that stuff.

“I went to all black schools. I lived in all black neighborhoods. I had a wonderful life in those neighborhoods,” he said.

“People think you’re making it up, ‘Oh, you’re trying to paint the South in a way it wasn’t,’ because they have a narrative,” Thomas said.

“I was moving back home when I stopped in D.C., so with all my confusion, I still wanted to get back. My high school was not inferior. My neighborhood was not inferior. My church was not inferior. My family was not inferior. I have never believed it, and I never will,” Thomas said.

“And I don’t think you need to start from the premise that if something is predominantly one group or another that you can make these broad assumptions about whether or not it is inferior,” he added.

Thomas noted that the university that produces the largest number of black doctors and blacks going to medical school is Xavier University, a historically black college in Louisiana.

Thomas was asked whether attending a historically black college was on his “radar screen” when he left the seminary. In high school, Thomas transferred to the St. John Vianney Minor Seminary, the first step in becoming a Catholic priest. After graduation, he continued his studies at the Immaculate Conception Seminary in Missouri.

Thomas described how he was planning to go to a black school after leaving the seminary, fueled by anger about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s assassination in 1968.

“Yes, I was done with all white schools. … I was angry. I mean it was 1968. Dr. King had just been assassinated, and I was done with it, and I understand people’s reaction when they’re angry. I was angry, and I got home, and my grandfather being my grandfather kicked me out of the house. So the only school I applied to by then was Holy Cross,” Thomas said.

He explained that the reason he ended up at Holy Cross College in Massachusetts was because he applied out of respect for his chemistry teacher, Sister Mary Carmine, and got accepted.

“The reason I got accepted is because I had almost a straight A average, and then the mythmakers came up with this thing I was recruited. I was not recruited,” Thomas said, calling it “serendipity” that he ended up at Holy Cross.

“Holy Cross saved me. I was going to go to Savannah State College,” he said.


British teachers should 'ignore Shakespeare's boring scenes'

Schools should stop teaching entire plays by Shakespeare to prevent children being forced to “grit their teeth” through the likes of Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet, a teachers’ leader has warned.

A “film trailer”-style approach to the Bard should be adopted to give pupils a brief taste of his most dramatic scenes while ignoring other parts, it was claimed.

Mary Bousted, general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, said Shakespeare was “given far too much respect” in schools.

She said too many English teachers wanted to “pass on their reverence” for the playwright by requiring pupils to study his most famous works from beginning to end.

But Dr Bousted insisted that the process often backfired by turning pupils off in large numbers, adding: “Is it any wonder that so many students grit their teeth, learn the lines and, when the exam is over, remember Shakespeare only as something that had to be endured in pursuit of an exam pass?”

Writing in the Times Educational Supplement, she urged schools not to “start at the beginning”, particularly when introducing pupils to Shakespeare for the first time.

But the comments angered traditionalists who said the approach represented an attempt to promote “ignorance” and “dumbing down”.

It comes amid a series of Government-backed plans designed to promote more Shakespeare in state schools.

Earlier this year, it emerged that teenagers would be required to study two of the Bard’s plays under a shake-up of GCSEs in England – one more than in existing course specifications set out by Labour.

The change was made following concerns that previous pupils were focusing on small “extracts” of Shakespearian plays to pass exams.

Ministers are also supporting the launch of a dedicated “Shakespeare Week” to mark the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth – giving children as young as five access to lessons about the Bard.

Dr Bousted, a former English teacher, who now heads the 160,000-strong ATL, said Shakespeare provided “compelling drama”.

But she said teachers needed to adopt an imaginative approach to his plays to make them more relevant to modern schoolchildren.

“Don’t start at the beginning,” she said. “Taking inspiration from film trailers, give novice Shakespeare readers a taste of the most highly dramatic scenes in the play.”

She said pupils could proceed onto reading the entire play after being introduced to the most exciting acts, citing Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet as examples of plays that start too slowly.

Dr Bousted insisted Macbeth should start in Act 2 after the murder of King Duncan, while Romeo and Juliet should begin just before Tybalt’s death early in Act 3.

But Chris McGovern, a former head teacher and chairman of the Campaign for Real Education, accused Dr Boysted of “promoting ignorance”.

“The whole point of studying drama and Shakespeare included is that you understand the whole play, not just parts of it,” he said.

“It's the computer games mentality that you only have what are seen to be action and excitement but Shakespeare and most dramatists are about far more than that. They're about character and plot development and poetry.

“Quite frankly, if a prominent person like that is saying such things one has a fear for the cultural heritage and for the vigour of the education our children are going to be receiving.”


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