Thursday, January 15, 2015

Lawmaker Wants to Mandate Second Amendment Education In Schools

A South Carolina lawmaker outraged over the absurd suspension of a student who turned in a fictional story about shooting a neighbor’s dinosaur is firing back at the absurd “zero-tolerance” policies of some left-wing school boards in the Palmetto State by proposing a bill that would mandate teaching the history and importance of the Second Amendment.

    The Second Amendment Education Act of 2015 would give students the opportunity for reasonable expression of the second amendment at school without fear of punishment.

    “If we let that go unchecked, the second amendment will cease being a freedom enjoyed under the United States Constitution,” Rep. Clemmons said.

    Three weeks of a high school student’s coursework on the Constitution would be dedicated to learning about why the right to bear arms was included in the Bill of Rights.

    The state superintendent of education would be responsible for developing the three-week high school curriculum using the National Rifle Association as a resource.

    Clemmons is also proposing making December 15 “Second Amendment Awareness Day” for students at all grade levels. Students would be encouraged to submit essays and posters highlighting the second amendment to the General Assembly Sportsman’s Caucus to judge.

It’s an indictment of how corrupt and naked polarized academic administration has become that lawmakers feel compelled to pass laws to protect students from being punished for merely discussing the exercise of basic, pre-existing human rights protected by both the South Carolina and United States constitutions.

That allowed, I’m curious as to how many actual hours of classroom time Clemmons would dedicate to the measure in the three-week high school curriculum window he proposes, which seems obsessively balanced towards just the Second Amendment.

Yes, Bearing Arms is a Second Amendment-focused site, but many students today seem to have a poor grasp of civics in general. Providing them a lopsided education that doesn’t give them an intellectual framework for the context of the Second Amendment seems almost as absurd as suspending students for writing about shooting dinosaurs.

What would I recommend instead?

I would like to see the re-imposition of legitimate, mandatory, year-long civics courses, something that seems to have fallen out of favor in many school districts which would rather teach children about anal sex and alternate genders than the theoretical and practical aspects of citizenship, their rights and duties as citizens, and how those relationships work between citizens and governments in our constitutional republic. Discussions about constitutional rights including the Second Amendment would be naturally embedded and discussed in a much richer context in such a course.

I’d suggest that Rep. Clemmons drastically alter the Second Amendment Education Act of 2015 (.DOCX Format download), stripping it down to an act that protects the rights of faculty and students to discuss the Second Amendment and firearms-related issues from punishments by overzealous anti-gun educators.  I’d then suggest a completely separate bill to focus on broadening civics education, replacing some of the social science propaganda being pushed these days as an educational necessity.

We’re all better served in the Second Amendment community by well-rounded students with a classical education.


EEOC: School Wrong to Fire Teacher Who Gave Bible to Student

A New Jersey school district violated the law when it fired a teacher who handed a Bible to a student, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ruled on December 15, 2014. The ruling was made public Tuesday.

The EEOC determined there was reasonable cause to believe the Phillipsburg School District discriminated against Walt Tutka, a substitute teacher. The EEOC also said religion and retaliation played a factor in Tutka's firing.

"This is a great indication the EEOC is taking religious liberty seriously and they are going to enforce the law—and in this case make sure Walt's rights are protected," Liberty Institute Attorney Hiram Sasser told me.

Liberty Institute is a law firm that specializes in religious liberty cases.

"This sends a message to school districts that their natural allergic reaction to religion is misplaced, and not only is it wrong—but it's also an egregious violation of the law," Sasser said.

As I first reported, Tutka was working as a substitute teacher on Oct. 12, 2013, when he ran afoul of school policies. He told a straggling student at the end of a line, "The first shall be last and the last shall be first."

The student asked on a number of occasions where the line was from, and Tutka told him it was from the Bible. When he discovered the child did not have a Bible, Tutka gave him his personal copy. It was not all that unusual because Tutka is a member of Gideons International, a ministry known for providing Bibles to school children across the world.

On Oct. 18, Tutka was summoned to the principal's office, where he was accused of violating a school policy that bans the distribution of religious materials and another that directs teachers to be neutral when discussion religious material.

He was fired on Jan. 14.

Sasser said he hopes the school district will reinstate Tutka.  "If they don't do the right thing, they will face some serious consequences," he told me. "They are going to be liable for damages."

I reached out to George Chando, the superintendent of the Phillipsburg School District. He declined to return my call.

My advice to him is to do the right thing, or Liberty Institute will go after him like a pit bull going after a pork chop.

Sasser said the EEOC ruling should serve as a warning to other school districts around the nation. "You can't just fire people because they happen to hand a Bible to somebody while they are at work," he said.

Sasser said he believes the school district was out to get Walt because he is a Gideon. I obtained a copy of an email from Phillipsburg Middle School Assistant Principal John Stillo that suggest the school district had an issue with the well-known religious group.

"It has been brought to the administration's attention that Gideons may be near our campus to distribute literature to our students," Stillo wrote in a memo to the school's staff. "Please make sure they DO NOT step foot onto our campus at any time. There will be added police and security presence at dismissal."

Gideon International has a long history of providing Bibles to public school students, but many districts have banned the religious society in recent years. Ironically, the Gideons are welcome to distribute Bibles and deliver speeches in Russian schools.

The Phillipsburg School District should rehire Walt. And it owes him a big apology. They waged a disgusting public war against this fine, upstanding man simply because he gave a child a Bible. Shame on you, Phillipsburg School District. Shame on you.


UK: Competition for places at top private schools reaches 'boiling point' with children sitting as many as seven entrance exams in desperate attempts to make the grade

Intelligent British parents are desperate to keep their kids out of a "multicultural" school

Competition for places at Britain's top private schools has reached 'boiling point' as children take several entrance exams in attempts to make the cut.

The number of prep schools has increased in recent years but few private schools have opened, meaning children have had to sit numerous exams at different institutions.

Thousands of 10 and 11-year-olds will sit English, maths and basic IQ tests this month to see if they make the grade.

Prudence Lynch, headmistress of Kensington Prep, a girls' school in west London, told The Times that parents 'almost explode' from stress as children sit up to seven exams, some nearly a day long.

She said: 'The pressure is beyond boiling point. There aren't enough places.

'The number sitting entrance exams for most of the senior schools has doubled - those that used to have 300 sitting the exam now have 600 or 700.

'We're having to try to prepare 10-year-olds to have sophisticated exam technique as well as knowing how to answer the questions, such as writing legibly, looking at the clock and dividing up the questions, not spending too long on a question that is worth only one mark, allowing time to review what you've done.

'It's not just about aptitude, it's about those tricks to go with the aptitude.'

This week more than 1,000 children sat 11+ exams at Upper Latymer School, in Hammersmith, almost double the number ten years ago.

The independent school in west London was attended by the likes of Hugh Grant, Heston Blumenthal and MP Keith Vaz.

Meanwhile Magdalen College School in Oxford saw a 40 per cent rise in applications for entrance examinations.

At Francis Holland School, in Chelsea, registrations for their tests have skyrocketed from 230 in 2009 to 730 this year.

Lucy Elphinstone, the school's headmistress, said: 'We interview every candidate to try to get past the prepared, formulaic interview from children who have been rehearsed by parents or tutors.

'We try to do something surprising that will get past the prepped interview, but these are ten-year-old children and we want to make them feel comfortable, rather than do an Oxbridge-style interview that scares the daylights out of them. You often see a wonderful spark when they talk to you that you wouldn't get just from an exam paper.

At a conference in London, she added: 'There is very little innocence and freedom left for children ... pressure on places is becoming such that parents are beside themselves with anxiety to get their children into schools.'


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