Friday, April 25, 2014

PC Common Core

You'll notice a rather important principle missing in New York state Common Core standards being drafted for grades K-8 – the concept of Liberty. Under the section “Civic Ideals and Practices,” the draft reads, “Students will explore democratic principles such as dignity for all, equality, fairness, and respect for authority and rules, and how those principles are applied to their community.”

However, as Education Action Group's Kyle Olson observes, “What happened to 'liberty'? You know, a word that actually appears in the Declaration of Independence? It's a word that means more than just about any other word in our national history. It refers to personal freedom, and the right of citizens to live their lives without the intrusion of tyrannical government.” Like the type of tyrannical government currently reigning over our vanishing republic.

The draft adds, “Students will examine … how citizens can demonstrate respect for authority.” In leftist speak, that means teaching students to relinquish their rights under the guise of “equality” and “fairness” to undermine Rule of Law.


91.9% of Louisiana Parents Approve of School Choice Program Holder Fought to End

Now, here's a revolutionary thought: school choice leads to happier families. In Louisiana, its school choice program withstood a challenge from Attorney General Eric Holder after a judge refused to side with the Department Of Justice on the issue.

Holder declared war on the state's education program in November of 2013. Now, a new survey shows that the program enjoys almost universal approval from families:

    "The Louisiana Federation for Children and the Black Alliance for Educational Options released their joint "Parental Satisfaction Survey" on Tuesday, which reported overwhelming praise from the program's participants.

    Of the parents surveyed, 91.9 percent of parents said they are satisfied with the program. In addition, 91.6 percent of parents said they are happy with their child's academic progress; 98.7 percent reported that their child feels safe; and 97.6 percent said they and their children feel welcome.....

    The Louisiana Scholarship Program recently survived a months-long legal battle with the Justice Department, following a federal judge's ruling that the program could continue. The DOJ had objected to vouchers on the grounds that they "impede desegregation," even though the majority of kids who receive vouchers are minority students."

Louisiana had become ground zero in the school choice battle - and it seems the side favoring choice is receiving high marks in satisfaction.


More British parents opt for boarding schools despite rise in fees

Rising numbers of British children are being enrolled in boarding schools as parents work longer hours to make ends meet, research has found.

Figures show more than 67,000 pupils are in private boarding schools this year – an increase of one per cent in the last 12 months.

In some cases, parents are being attracted by the appeal of “flexi-boarding” – when children stay at school for few nights a week without making a full-time commitment – particularly for the youngest pupils.

The increase was recorded despite a record rise in fees this year, with the average parent being required to pay almost £29,000, adding more than £1,000 to the annual bill.

It also emerged that the number of foreign pupils being educated in the UK dropped this year, suggesting the overall increase in demand for boarding was driven by British parents.

The disclosure, made in the Independent Schools Council’s 2014 annual census, shows a reverse of a long-term decline in the number of British children given a boarding education.

Experts said the increase reflected the fact that hardworking parents often see boarding as a means of securing a good education without forking out for full-time child care on top.

Janette Wallis, senior editor of The Good Schools Guide, said: “We see increasing numbers of parents with demanding jobs valuing boarding as it makes a teetering work/life balance a bit more manageable.

“Boarding has become much more local, with parents usually living less than 90 minutes from their child’s school.”

Hilary Moriarty, director of the Boarding Schools’ Association, said: “For parents, weekly and flexi-boarding is seen as the friendly and acceptable face of boarding; you still feel in touch with your children without feeling that you’re ‘sending them away’.”

The ISC census found that the overall number of pupils in private education increased from 508,601 to 511,928 this year, although more schools completed the survey this year.

Among those schools that supplied data in both 2013 and 2014, numbers largely “held steady” at 504,362 – down by just 200 pupils in a year.

On this basis, the number of boarding school pupils rose by one per cent – from 66,585 to 67,221 – although that includes a sharp drop in entrants from overseas.

Figures suggest the number of British children in boarding increased by around 4.6 per cent this year.

Nationally, some one-in-six boarders are registered as flexi- or weekly boarders, but that number increases to more than half among children aged 13 or under.

The census also showed:

* Average fees for all types of independent schools increased by 3.9 per cent to £14,994 this year – adding another £700 to most parents’ annual bill;

* Some eight per cent of pupils were given a bursary to attend private schools, up from 7.8 per cent last year, with a total of £324.4m being spent, leading to claims from the ISC that fee assistance made independent education more accessible for middle-income families;

* Private schools educate around seven per cent of pupils nationally, but numbers grow as high as 14 per cent among sixth-formers, rising to around a fifth of 16- to 18-year-olds in London and the south east,

* Independent schools are increasingly diverse, with 28 per cent of children coming from ethnic minorities, up from 26 per cent last year and 23 per cent in 2009;

* The number of children in UK private schools with parents living overseas dropped by more than 10 per cent this year to 23,139, probably as a result of a toughening up of visa requirements;

* Another 11,329 British-based foreigners also enrolled their children in the fee-paying sector – the first time this figure has been published;

* The largest source of foreign pupils was Hong Kong, followed by China, mainland Europe and Russia.


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