Friday, May 06, 2016

Australia: Calls for Victorian curriculum to say Australia was invaded, not settled

This is just Leftists stirring up hatred.  When the English arrived in Australia, they didn't come waving swords and muskets.  They didn't need to.  There were no spear-wielding bands of warriors to confront.   From behind cover, the Aborigines mostly just stood and stared in amazement and fear. As time went by there were isolated violent clashes but settlement was nothing like an invasion, as we normally conceive it

The picture I have just drawn is a traditional one but in the second half of the 20th century, Leftist historians set to work to demonize white settlement.  And they told monstrous lies in the process.  Zero Aboriginal deaths in some incidents became 10,000 deaths, for instance.  Keith Windschuttle has however caught them out

Education Minister James Merlino has reignited debate about whether the curriculum should refer to Australia being invaded rather than settled. It follows the Minister recently declaring that in the eyes of Aboriginal people, Australia was invaded rather than settled.

Aboriginal leaders and advocates are calling for change, and say it is inaccurate to tell students that Australia was settled by Europeans.

Victorian Aboriginal Education Association general manager Lionel Bamblett said that he would prefer to see the term invasion in the curriculum.

"Settlement is inaccurate," he said. "From an Aboriginal viewpoint we believe there was an invasion. We also know that sometimes that causes a fair degree of concern in the general population, and at one stage we tended to settle on the use of the word colonisation."

In March, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said that Australia was invaded and schools had been lying to students for too long.

Mr Merlino made his comments in a speech about trust and the media that he delivered last month at RMIT. "Look at the Daily Telegraph's page one assault on universities for having the temerity to state the obvious — that European settlement in Australia was, for Indigenous Australians, an invasion," Mr Merlino said.

But he told The Age that he was not considering changes to the curriculum, despite its references to settlers and settlement.  "Victorian students are already taught about Australian history from a number of perspectives," he said.  "It is important for students to understand the different historical interpretations and debates surrounding our nation's history."

The curriculum states that year 9 students should consider "the effects (unintended and intended) of contact" between "European settlers" and Indigenous peoples. This includes massacres of Aboriginal people, "their killing of sheep" and the Stolen Generation. It predominantly refers to European "settlement" of Australia, and sometimes uses the term "colonisation". It never refers to invasion in an Australian context.

University of Melbourne masters student Elizabeth Muldoon – who is also a history teacher at a state school– said the Australian curriculum was misleading.

"The little Indigenous history included in it is telling a really one-sided story. It emphasises the struggles that Aboriginal people have fought for civil rights as opposed to land rights and the right to self determination."

She tells her students that for Aboriginal people, Australia was invaded rather than settled. "For Aboriginal people, colonisation was a violent process so invasion is more appropriate. Settlement obscures the violence, and implies that it was peaceful and the land was vacant," she said.

Reconciliation Australia co-chair Tom Calma said the term "settlement" was too passive. "Wherever a settlement took place there was conflict, it was fairly bloody. They didn't peacefully negotiate anything, they just killed people. "You get some ultra conservatives who want to mask what happened versus reality."

The new Victorian curriculum incorporates and reflects most of the Australian curriculum, and is being rolled out across the state.


GMU President Defends Renaming Law School After Scalia, Cites Diversity

George Mason University President Angel Cabrera is defending the decision to rename George Mason's law school after the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in the spirit of “diversity of thought,” despite protests that the name change represents an endorsement of alleged “racism, sexism, and homophobia.”

In an open letter that has garnered hundreds of signatures, Assistant Cultural Studies Professor Craig Willse wrote GMU’s decision to rename the law school after Scalia is an “affront to those in our community who have been the targets of Scalia’s racism, sexism, and homophobia.”

Willse particularly took issue with Scalia’s positions on affirmative action and abortion.

In a public statement addressing the controversy surrounding the name change, Cabrera wrote the law school was not changing its name to honor Scalia because of any ideology agreement with his views.

Cabrera wrote, “We are not endorsing his opinions on any specific issue. We are recognizing a man who served our country at the highest level of government for 30 years and who many experts of diverse ideological persuasions—from faculty colleagues in our law school, to his peers on the Supreme Court, to the president of the United States—consider to have been a great jurist who had a profound impact in the legal field.”

“My position then was clear and has not changed: we must ensure that George Mason University remains an example of diversity of thought, a place where multiple perspectives can be dissected, confronted, and debated for the benefit and progress of society at large,” Cabrera continued.  “Rejecting a major naming gift in honor of a U.S. Supreme Court Justice on the basis that some of us disagree with some of his opinions would be inconsistent with our values of diversity and freedom of thought.”

Cabera also addressed concerns that the $30 million gift to the university includes $10 million from the libertarian Charles Koch Foundation to fund new scholarships. The Koch donation raised suspicions that the Koch brothers will exercise ideological control over the school.

Cabrera pointed out that the Charles Koch Foundation has given approximately $50 million to GMU over the past decade.

“To put things in perspective, that would amount to about 0.6 percent of our average annual budget over this period.  The suggestion that gifts of this magnitude can shape the ideology of the largest public research university in Virginia is farfetched to say the least.”

“I take it as one of my most important responsibilities to protect the integrity of our academic enterprise. Our donors understand that, no matter how generous they may be, they will have no authority whatsoever in our faculty selection and promotion processes, our student admissions, or our curricular choices. If that’s not acceptable to them, we simply decline the gifts,” Cabrera said.


Teacher protest shuts most Detroit public schools

Nearly all of Detroit’s public schools were closed Monday and more than 45,000 students missed classes after about half the district’s teachers called in sick to protest the possibility that some of them won’t get paid over the summer if the struggling district runs out of cash.

The latest in a series of sick-outs closed 94 of 97 schools for the day as 1,562 teachers heeded their union’s call to stay home.

The move by the Detroit Federation of Teachers came after Detroit Public Schools’ transition manager said the district would have no money to continue paying teachers this summer without further funding from the state.

The state had approved $47.8 million in emergency money in March to keep the 46,000-student school system operating, but that amount pays the district’s bills only through June 30. Detroit Schools also would be unable to fund summer school or special education programs after June 30.

The state Legislature is considering a $720 million restructuring plan that would pay off the district’s enormous debt.

Under their contract, Detroit teachers can opt to receive their pay over the course of the school year or spread over a full 12 months. It wasn’t immediately clear how many of the district’s approximately 3,000 educators have chosen to have their biweekly paychecks spread out over 26 weeks.

Some say they live paycheck to paycheck and need the money to get through July and August, before the next school year starts.

‘‘We have already put the work in,’’ said Kimberly Morrison, 54, a reading and recovery specialist and 20-year district employee. ‘‘If I don’t get my pay, then somebody else — who I owe — won’t get their pay.’’

Kindergarten teacher Famata Legemah, 54, says it is difficult for her to save enough during the school year to make do over the summer because ‘‘there’s not a whole lot left over.’’

Morrison and Legemah were among a few hundred teachers who picketed Monday morning outside the district’s administrative offices.

‘‘There’s a basic agreement in America: When you put in a day’s work, you’ll receive a day’s pay,’’ said Ivy Bailey, interim president of the Detroit Federation of Teachers. ‘‘DPS is breaking that deal. Teachers want to be in the classroom giving children a chance to learn and reach their potential.

‘‘Unfortunately, by refusing to guarantee that we will be paid for our work, DPS is effectively locking our members out of the classrooms.’’

Teacher strikes are illegal under Michigan law. Sick-outs earlier this year caused tens of thousands of students to miss class.

Dejuan Parkman, who has four children in the district, joined the protest. Parkman, 42, was able to get his mother to watch the kids Monday, but said he might have to take time off from his catering business if more sick-outs are held.

‘‘It’s real scary,’’ he said. ‘‘What are we going to do if the teachers shut down the schools? I’m not mad at the teachers. You can’t pay the teachers their money? That’s not right. They have to pay their utilities, pay their mortgages and car notes.’’

Steven Rhodes, the district’s state-appointed transition manager and a former bankruptcy judge, also said the teachers ‘‘have to be paid for the work that they do,’’ but without more help from the state that might not be possible. He said he understood the frustration and would like to do something about it.

‘‘No one can guarantee what the Legislature will do,’’ Rhodes said. ‘‘The alternative is so unimaginable.’’

Governor Rick Snyder, a Republican, said Monday that he hopes to see action this month and ‘‘clearly before the middle of June’’ by lawmakers.

‘‘We need to get something done here,’’ Snyder told reporters in Flint. ‘‘A legislative solution is the best solution compared to the alternatives of ending up in court in some fashion.’’

Monday’s sick-out was not constructive, especially with the Legislature considering the restructuring plan, he added.

The restructuring proposal is pending in the House, where majority Republicans want to tie aid to restrictions on teacher work stoppages and some collective bargaining rights.

Lawmakers could consider passing another emergency stopgap measure, like the earlier emergency measure that is keeping the district operating through June 30.

Snyder has said the school district’s debt will reach about $515 million by this summer. Much of the blame for the money troubles can be traced to plummeting student enrollment.

The Detroit Public Schools had 150,415 students in 2003-2004. Now, about 46,000 students attend the district’s 97 schools. Detroit receives about $7,400 for each student. Many Detroit parents seeking out better educational opportunities for their children have turned to charter schools and close-by suburban districts.

The teachers union has scheduled a membership meeting Tuesday to discuss its options.


Thursday, May 05, 2016

UK: Ofsted chief condemns families for 'exam strike'

The head of Ofsted has condemned parents who took their children out of lessons yesterday in protest at testing.

Michael Wilshaw said grammar and maths assessments for six and seven-year-olds could improve Britain's 'mediocre' position in international education rankings.

He stressed the tests helped identify struggling children, pointing out that poorer pupils had the odds stacked against them if they fell behind.

Councils had threatened £60 fines for families involved in the 'kids' strike' but it will be left to headmasters to take action. Few are likely to do so.

Only around 2,000 pupils were withdrawn from school yesterday, notably in Brighton, Newcastle and Hackney in north-east London. Some regions were almost entirely unaffected.

Sir Michael, who is chief inspector of schools, said: 'As I have long argued, children who fall behind in the early years of their education struggle to catch up in later years.

'If by the age of seven, a child has not mastered the basic skills of reading, writing and mathematics, the odds will be stacked against them for the rest of their lives. This is especially the case for poorer children.

'All the evidence shows that social mobility does not start at the age of 16, or even 11, but at a much earlier age. That is why it is so critical to lay solid foundations from the start of a child's education.

'I understand testing can sometimes be stressful but I am also confident that most schools do everything they can to minimise the stress that children experience in preparing for and sitting these tests.'

Formerly called Sats, the key stage tests are held at the end of infant and junior school to help teachers assess pupils and measure school performance.

Children do not have to revise or even know the tests are taking place. The individual results are not published.


Teacher is shocked after receiving a letter from the Department for Education with FIVE grammar mistakes in it

A teacher's open letter to the Department for Education has gone viral after it sent her a note littered with punctuation errors.

Mary Davies, 38, from Yarm, North Yorkshire, had originally written to the Education Secretary, Nicky Morgan, to express her concerns about recent changes to the testing of writing and spelling at Key Stage 2.

However the letter she received in response contained five mistakes - with Mrs Davies taking to Facebook to point out the irony.

Mrs Davies is now threatening to use the letter as an exercise in her classroom, challenging her pupils to spot the errors.

She initially wrote to her MP concerned children across the country had been given too much to learn in a short space of time.

Speaking to FEMAIL, Mrs Davies told how her class was worried about their upcoming SATs tests:

She said: 'I have been running weekly Booster classes for my Year 6 pupils for the last few months, in order to help them to feel more confident about the aspects of maths, spelling, punctuation and grammar that they will be tested on next week.

'Despite the additional sessions and the exceedingly hard work they have been doing in class all year, the children are extremely anxious about what faces them.'

The teacher, who has more than 17 years experience, had given up hope of receiving a reply from Mrs Morgan, but six weeks later she received a letter written by the Department for Education, on behalf of the Education Secretary.

It reiterated that 'spelling and handwriting are key elements of the national curriculum in primary school'.

So it came as a surprise that the letter itself contained several grammatical and punctuation errors.

In disbelief Mrs Davies decided to post a response directly to the DfE Facebook page, which has now been shared more than 13,000 times and has 1,500 comments.

The teacher thanked the DfE for sending the letter: 'I will be using it next week with my Year 6 pupils to develop their evaluating & editing skills.'

She added: 'I'm sure they will easily be able to spot the 5 punctuation and grammar errors, and, as this won't take too long, I can then ask them to use the interim teacher assessment criteria to judge the level of your letter.'


Elitist panel at premier university: Islam good, America Islamophobic

Georgetown University's "Islamophobia" Song Remains the Same
In Europe and the United States, "Islamophobia has grown exponentially in 2015.  In fact it is pretty much at its highest point," stated Professor John Esposito on April 14 at his academic home, Georgetown University.  His comments typified thepanel, "Race, Religion and U.S. Presidential Politics," and its hackneyed attribution of growing global concerns about Islam to irrational "Islamophobia."

Esposito criticized largely negative global media coverage of Islamic issues "with very little coverage of the broader context, the mainstream communities of Muslims around the world."  He referenced Media Tenor, a think tank directed byRoland Schatz, a frequent speaker at Georgetown's Saudi-funded Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU) headed by Esposito.  Yet Media Tenor's 2013 study on Islam in the global media showed the esteemedWall Street Journal's reporting on Islam as heavily negative, indicating a dearth of worldwide good news concerning Islam.

Schatz, who has previously suggested that the media refrain from reporting bad news about Islam in the absence of countervailing good news, has questionable objectivity.  He has dubiously asserted that the "hurting of innocents is absolutely not in keeping with the Koran" and described Egypt's former Grand Mufti, Ali Gomaa, as "remarkably challenging and funny."  Less humorously, Schatz's collaborator in the C1 World Dialogue has endorsed Islamic doctrines concerning wife-beating and genocidal apocalyptic predictions concerning Jews.  Gomaa also supported bizarre ideas about the companions of Islam's prophet Muhammad drinking his urine.

Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU) analyst Engy Abdelkader decried on the panel the current climate surrounding Islam exhibited in American presidential candidates who "are not fit to even run in an election cycle."  "People are still recovering from the Islamophobia that Ben Carson unleashed on the United States," she ranted, for whom "it pays to be Islamophobic" by questioning sharia adherence.  He was "literally receiving increased [campaign] funds for subscribing and disseminating prejudiced, biased, unacceptable viewpoints," entailing that many Americans consider his concerns legitimate.  Likewise legitimate are Donald Trump's proven claims of news reports documenting New York City area Muslims celebrating the September 11, 2001, Al Qaeda (AQ) attacks, despite her denials.

Using an infographic, Abdelkader linked increasing criticism of Islam to an oft-repeated theme of hate crime attacks upon Muslims.  Many Muslim leaders have a "strong perception" that the "mainstreaming of Islamophobia by the political candidates also created fertile ground for these violent attacks" although "causation is difficult to prove."  She cited the February 2015 Chapel Hill, North Carolina, killings of three Muslims as a hate crime, but evidence about the shooter indicates a mentally unstable man with no particular anti-Muslim animosity. 

Overall, her analysis ignores statistics debunking theories of "Islamophobia" backlash (Jews are actually the main religious hate crime targets), biased reporting notwithstanding.

By contrast, Abdelkader dismissed the July 2015 murderous assault upon a Chattanooga, Tennessee, armed forces recruiting office, subsequently officially classified as inspired by foreign terrorists, as the action of an unstable Muslim.  She cited ISPU studies showing a "positive relationship between the Muslim identity and the American identity for Muslims in America." 

Similar positive correlations between national and religious identity in a recent study of British Muslims broadcast on television, however, did not preclude their expression of extremist views.

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) lawyer Naureen Shah could only describe American attitudes towards Islam as irresponsible, as if the United States faced no actual jihadist threats.  "The United States has been on a permanent war-footing since the 9/11 attacks" and a "sense of crisis grips our nation" that "seems to ratchet up every time there is another major attack among Western people," she stated.  "The election is a symptom of Islamophobia, Islamophobia that is rooted deeply into America now" as "people mobilize around hate and prejudice."

Islamic terrorism appeared to Shah as the stuff of horror fiction as "Muslims embody the fear of terrorism," being the "zombies, the vampires, and the monsters of terrorism."  Muslims are like vampires "who seem normal, who seem assimilated, but then the next thing you know they turn around and they radicalize."  She criticized that three different entities conducted the 1979 Iranian seizure of the American embassy, the 9/11 AQ attacks, and the March 22 Brussels Islamic State (IS) attacks, yet "are assimilated into a single threat, the Muslim threat."  She overlooked common Islamic ideological affinities between Islamic State, an Al-Qaeda outgrowth, and Al-Qaeda's quiet ally, Iran's Islamic Republic.

Analogous to the panel's title, Shah consistently conflated concerns about Islamic ideology with racial prejudice as the "Muslim identity is racialized into this suspicious other."  Speaking of enemy combatants held at Guantanamo Bay, she said "you are a brown man and you are a Muslim," as if all jihadists there or elsewhere are "brown."  Human rights supporters should oppose a "national security agenda that tries to villainize a set of people based on their national origin and their religion."

Defender of Islam and Washington Post journalist Ishaan Tharoor completed the panel's bias while referencing his strained analysis of "Islamophobia" as a threat to European democracy.  He also cited his previous contorted comparison of modern Syrian refugees with Jews fleeing Nazism, writing that belies this anti-Israel writer's lack of concern for modern Jews (consider this uncritical Hamas propaganda citation). 

He nonetheless conceded that recent "really unfortunate scenes" of sexual assault in Cologne and other European cities were a "disaster for Muslims and also a disaster for the idea of Europe."  This mild language euphemizes a European-wide outbreak of sexual assaults linked to Muslim migration that, among other things, have led to descriptions of Sweden as the "West's rape capital."

The panelists' presentations of Muslims as permanent victims, never perpetrators, have become weary through the years, like a bad Pachelbel Canon.  As Islam repeatedly originates controversies and crises, these prominent talking heads respond in effect with "who are you gonna believe, me or your lying eyes."  Perhaps these arguments' tiredness explains why only about 35 listeners appeared for an event billed as sold out, an ironic sign of hope.


Wednesday, May 04, 2016


As bloody images roll in from Costa Mesa, Calif. where hard left protesters attacked supporters exiting a Donald Trump rally, the question that presents itself is, “How did things deteriorate to this point?”

The respect for free speech was once sacrosanct, to the point that liberals of a bygone era would repeat the bromide, “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.” But as seen in Costa Mesa, one can easily conclude that the sentiment is no longer widely held on the left. If a person who supports a political viewpoint or candidate can no longer safely express their belief in public, then it is clear that the ability to speak freely is under siege, and no longer safe from the intellectual descendants of the Visigoths.

In fairness, some on the left actually believed the above quote and used it in sincerity. Some holdouts exist, like Greg Lukianoff of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, exist as some of the last vestiges of the old “Freedom Left” faction, otherwise vanquished by the “Force Left”, bent on imposing their worldview on others with impunity.  This animosity toward freedom of speech and assembly did not effervesce from the grounds of a Trump rally, but from their educators and thought leaders that shelter in academia.

The war on free speech has been a cold war with hot spots that flare up from time to time. What is clear is that the hard left have been combatants, looking for their opportunity to use speech as a weapon, and as such, disarm opponents when possible.  Their lesser tactics include shaming and using arbitrary means such as Title IX to silence their opponents. When that fails or is not applicable, they escalate, using more forceful means as we see in California; they are all facets of the same thinking that enforce cultural conformity at the expense of individual liberty.

Shaming is so pervasive, that it is exercised by lowly academic administrators and Presidential Candidates alike. Lukianoff reported that at the University of California-San Diego, a satirical student newspaper published an article with obscenities and pejoratives mocking the notion of safe spaces; university administrators responded with a press release denouncing them, leading up to the student council defunding all print publications. Sounds severe?

According to Lukianoff, the Department of Justice reportedly is threatening to deny federal funding to universities that refuse to abide by the administrative guidance that derive from Title IX. This is done under the guise of protecting students from sexual harassment via instituting de facto speech codes, but without a mechanism to adjudicate the claim, the accusation is a conviction in the eyes of the government. This means  that universities are being coerced into violating the First Amendment, lest they forfeit federal funding, and taxpayers are being compelled to fund the erosion of their own rights

Elsewhere, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the Organization of the Islamic Conference in 2011 that she would “to use some old-fashioned techniques of peer pressure and shaming” against those who would speak strongly against radical Islam, which she has characterized as “religious intolerance.” The inability to properly categorize radical Islam as a threat is nothing short of deadly, and the demonization of those who would do so is suicidal.

But the issue is by no means a partisan one. Numerous Republicans have quietly acquiesced as the anti-speech forces have used their politically correct cudgels to attain cultural hegemony. The Obama administration has engaged in scandalous behavior that would make Richard Nixon blush, from the IRS targeting tea party and other conservative groups to the Benghazi scandal, all things that might bring down mortal administrations. Any talk of impeachment led to unbearable levels of shaming from the President’s praetorian guard in Congress and the media, and the issues quietly faded away.

Those who believe in inalienable rights have two options: they can allow the freedom of speech to continue degrading, until a Costa Mesa like scene becomes so pervasive it takes full power that we are waiting for the Maoist struggle sessions to begin; or, we can mobilize with the remnants of the Freedom Left, and beat back the retrograde, anti-Enlightenment forces that left unchecked, would commence with their rehashed Cultural Revolution.  This cannot occur without reinvigorating Congress’ Article I capabilities, reining in the judiciary and the executive branch’s administrative state by systemically dismantling the taxpayer-funded infrastructure they use to assail our freedoms.

We currently have the option to choose our battle. As we wait, we hazard that the battle will instead be chosen for us, on ground that is less advantageous. If the country comes to look like Costa Mesa did last week and Chicago before it, our choices will not be so appealing.


Nationally Ranked School Counters Complaint of Transgender Discrimination

A nationally recognized charter school in Minnesota is fighting a complaint filed by the parents of a transgender kindergartner who allege the school enabled discrimination against their child.

Nova Classical Academy administrators said they will deny the allegations, filed last month with the city of St. Paul, while continuing their push to improve school policies to protect and respect all students.

“At Nova, we are committed to providing a school environment free of gender-bias and discrimination of any kind, where every student feels safe, welcomed, accepted, and valued,” the school said in a formal statement. “We plan to respond to the complaint by denying the allegations. We will present evidence that the school has taken all due measures to protect the student’s rights.”

In attempting to accommodate one kindergartner’s rights, however, two parents told The Daily Signal last week, the school is trampling on their own.

While working to build a more inclusive environment, they say, the school is excluding the rights of parents who object to the idea of introducing the topic of gender identity to their children at such a young age.

“The other side basically didn’t want us to have a voice, calling everything we say hateful or discriminatory or both,” one parent involved in recent events told The Daily Signal.

David and Hannah Edwards, the parents of the kindergartner, filed the complaint March 24 with the St. Paul Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity Department. It alleges that Nova Classical Academy failed to adequately protect their child from bullying and other forms of discrimination.

Their child was born male, the Edwardses say, but now presents as a transgender girl.

Nova Classical Academy is a K-12 public charter school with 920 students. Based on the 2013-14 school year, U.S. News and World Report ranked its upper school as the No. 1 high school in Minnesota and the No.16 high school in the nation.

Gender Justice, the legal group representing the Edwardses in their complaint, said the school:

(a) failed to protect their child and other gender nonconforming and transgender students at Nova from persistent gender-based bullying and hostility, and

(b) denied their child the ability to undergo a gender transition at Nova in a safe and timely way, as she had in all other areas of her life.

Instead of alleging the school violated Title IX provisions that ban discrimination in federally funded education programs—which lawyers for several other cases of this nature have alleged—David and Hannah Edwards argue that Nova Classical Academy’s treatment of their child violated St. Paul’s human rights ordinance.

Specifically, the complaint alleges the school failed to protect the Edwardses’ child from “gender-based bullying and hostility” because school leadership “stopped staff” from adding the book “My Princess Boy” to its anti-bullying curriculum.

The Edwardses’ complaint goes on to say the school denied their child’s right to undergo a gender transition “in a safe and timely way.” It reads:

In a meeting that evening, we were told that the school was not willing to use effective materials like ‘I Am Jazz’ would not ever conduct gender education, whether proactive or corrective, without first introducing delay and inviting or encouraging families to ‘opt out;’ and would not even—as a bare minimum—simply inform our child’s classmates of her preferred name and pronouns, without first delaying for days and inviting or encouraging families to ‘opt out’ of this information.

“As a result of these violations,” the Edwardses wrote, “we were forced to withdraw her from Nova.”

“I Am Jazz” is a children’s book based on the experiences of  a transgender girl named Jazz Jennings, 15, who was born male and went public as identifying as female at age 6. A reality TV show of the same name on TLC follows her life today.

A spokesman for the city’s Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity said he could not comment because the couple’s complaint is part of an active investigation.

The Edwardses aren’t alone in leaving the school over their child’s case. In February, The Daily Signal reported that at least 10 parents transferred their children to different schools because of “nonconformity issues,” saying the school’s plan to adopt a gender inclusion policy for elementary-age students was too far-reaching.

Since then, The Daily Signal has learned that more parents have taken their children out of Nova Classical Academy, and more plan to by year’s end.

“It’s too bad the family didn’t stay,” one mother who removed all her children from the school said of the Edwardses. “The school has proceeded in changing school policy just as the family requested and has lost and continues to lose many of the original families that actually came to the school for classical education.”

“My personal feeling is that the school has given the other side everything that they want,” another parent involved in the events at Nova Classical Academy told The Daily Signal, adding:

"Furthermore, if we had not fought back, I think they would have implemented all of this already. I feel like the school wanted to make sure they followed all of their bylaws so that they didn’t get sued.  Also they know a lot of parents are unhappy so they have taken their time and are going through the processes. But in the end they were going to implement all of the asked-for policies. To me, the other side is getting everything they wanted, just not when they wanted it, which is right away".

Eric Williams, executive director of Nova Classical Academy, confirmed to The Daily Signal that the school is in the process of developing a “specific policy to assure our school is welcoming to students, regardless of gender identity or gender expression.”  “The board is moving deliberately to assure that we get it right,” Williams said in an email. “We expect to adopt a policy next month [in May].”

That policy won’t come easy. Parents concerned over coming changes say the policy—and the process the school has used to get there—tramples on their First Amendment rights to free speech, religion, and association.

“The policy itself is everything and more that the Edwards family was asking for,” the second parent said, adding:

"As regards explicit mention of the First Amendment, it has been decided for the purposes of this policy that they will not include anything about that, as all relevant First Amendment protections are listed in other parts of law and policy. It is the perception of many that they are doing this to err on the side of transgender students when it comes to what may be unsettled law regarding addressing people by their preferred names and pronouns in schools".

Williams, the head of Nova Classical Academy, told The Daily Signal that the school not only won’t tolerate but has a legal obligation to “prohibit” speech by parents, students, or others “that causes another person to be belittled.”

It is because of this attitude that some parents say they have left.

“On the news, [the school will] say, ‘We want to listen to them, parents have sent endless letters, they have come to the board meetings and gave endless comments,’ but there has not been an olive branch offered to parents on this topic,” said the mother who removed her children from Nova Classical Academy over the events.

“So when we saw that there’s not a negotiation process—this is what’s going to happen—I was worried about my kids and I got tired of worrying about my kids.”

The second parent said: “The other side basically didn’t want us to have a voice, calling everything we say hateful or discriminatory or both.”

Williams suggested that a challenge Nova Classical Academy faces is being a public charter school. As such, the school must adhere to its charter, which includes a “long-held commitment to transparent governance.”

Because of this, debate over the school’s proposed gender inclusion policy has been uncomfortably public.

“Transparency allows divergent views to be made public,” Williams said. “We need to protect freedom of expression and we need to protect our students from bullying in school by other students and by anyone else. When it comes to things people say, we don’t always succeed in striking this balance.”


This Is the Top Predictor of Whether You'll Want to Go to College

Next time your parents get after you for not studying enough, offer to accompany them to a museum instead — they’ll relish the quality time, and you can tell them it’ll make you more likely to go to college, too.

According to a new study published in the Journal of Youth Studies, teens who partake in cultural activities with their parents are more likely to want to continue their studies after age 16 than those who don’t — and that includes teens who participate in extracurricular activities or homework clubs. The data was taken from the annual United Kingdom Household Longitudinal Study, and included responses from almost 11,000 teenagers who answered questions about family closeness, friendships, homework, and extracurricular activities, as well as things like visiting art galleries, discussing books at home, and how many evenings they spend doing homework.

According to the research, led by Dr. Dimitra Hartas, an associate professor in the Centre for Education Studies at the University of Warwick, adolescents who were exposed to cultural activities, like going to concerts, museums, or art galleries, were 23% less likely to want to forgo college for job training or employment; while those with less “cultural capital,” as the researchers called it, were 14% less likely to consider college important, and 20% less likely to consider the GCSEs, the exams many U.K. high school students must take before moving on to university, important. And though the study found that emotional closeness to parents isn’t a significant predictor of the desire to attend college, it is an indicator of how important students consider the GCSEs.

“These findings have significant implications for family and educational policy, especially with regard to ‘raising aspirations’ and reducing early school leaving,” Dr. Hartas said. “They also raise the issue of reconsidering the role of the home environment as a web of emotionally and intellectually charged relationships between parents and children rather than an extension of the school day.” So, while it’s certainly important to focus on your homework and studies — and understandable that your parents may encourage you to do so — it may be just as important to build up your own cultural capital with your folks.

When you get home from school today, try engaging them in a conversation about something other than your classes or homework. Step away from your computer and study guides in favor of experiencing something new and different with your parents, and it could spark something in you that motivates you to keep learning, exploring, and achieving your greatest potential.


Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Watch Precious Snowflake Go Berserk At UMass Event On Political Correctness

On April 25, The American Enterprise Institute’s Christina Hoff Sommers, Breitbart’s Milo Yiannopoulos, and comedian/commentator Steven Crowder were part of a free speech event at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Of course, the topic of the discussion was political correctness on campus, which sent the cupcake brigade into a conniption fit.

All I can say is God bless Campus Reform for capturing one of these precious snowflakes going absolutely berserk at the event. The clip is embedded for your enjoyment below (via Campus Reform) [Warning: some strong language]:

One of the protesters took it upon herself to pass out literature expressing her concern for the “triggering” event, claiming the speakers “all demonstrate either that you don’t give a shit about people’s trauma and pain and think it’s funny to thrust people into states of panic and distress OR that you fundamentally do not understand what a trigger is, what it means to be triggered, and what a trigger warning is meant to prevent.”

When Campus Reform asked the activist to elaborate on the flyers, she refused to provide her name or comment because, as she put it, “Campus Reform causes death and death threats due to its extreme language.”

As the speakers walked onto the stage they were greeted with boos and middle fingers from many audience members, to which Steven Crowder graciously responded with a middle finger of his own.
The speakers were constantly interrupted throughout the event by shouts from the audience to “go home” or that “we don’t want you here,” with some of the most enthusiastic hollering coming from the very protester Campus Reform had attempted to speak with before the event.

When the protester attempts to interrupt Yiannopoulos at the beginning of the video, Hoff Sommers tells her to “calm down, young lady.” Paying no heed, the protester responds with an impassioned “Fuck you! Fuck you!”

Later on, the young lady begins loudly asserting that “hate speech is not welcome here” and demanding that the speakers “keep your hate speech off this campus,” all while insisting that she is the true embodiment of free speech.

“Stop talking to us like children!” she demands at another point.
“Then stop acting like a child,” Hoff Sommers responds coolly.

First, the notion that Campus Reform causes death by using “extreme language” is just absurd in itself. Second, you’re just asking to be mocked when you have to dole out pamphlets saying that the people on stage, or any speaker invited to a college campus that leans to the right, doesn’t understand what a trigger warning is—as if to suggest it’s a real thing.

It’s a figment of the progressive imagination to censor views that don’t like because they lack the maturity to deal with the fact that in a world of over six billion people—some might have differing opinions on certain subjects. Oh, the horror! The horror!

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg torched the political correctness ethos being injected into college campuses in his commencement address at the University of Michigan yesterday, calling “safe spaces” a “most dangerous” place since it fools young minds into thinking that they can cordon off a space where no differing opinions can enter. He labeled such activity counterproductive in our politics, both at home and abroad, aptly noting that an open mind is what makes American society, and others that embrace freedom of speech and expression, unique.

You are either for freedom of speech or against it. There’s no such thing as being a part-time free speech supporter. Reality is going to pummel these precious flowers. It’s going to be nasty—that realization that your feelings don’t trump our constitutional right to free speech. And yes, that includes getting your feelings hurt.


UK: Head teachers argue parents should be stripped of right to take children out of religious education

Parents do not always know what is best for their children, head teachers have said as they call on the Government to strip parents of their right to take their children out of religious education lessons.

The call came as senior teachers warned groomers and radicalisers "exploit the 'us and them syndrome'", making it crucial for pupils to attend RE classes to expose them to other faiths and teach them about tolerance.

Parents currently have the right to pull their children out of the lessons, but teachers have warned the rule is undermining their work.

The promotion of British values has been a core part of the Government strategy to tackle radicalisation, with the Prime Minister himself saying no school should be excluded from teaching them.

However, heads are now demanding that the Government scrap the parental right to take children out of RE as they see it in stark contrast with the Prime Minister's ambitions.

On Sunday teachers passed a motion almost unanimously that calls on the executive of the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) "to negotiate with the Department for Education to revoke the existing legal framework which entitles parents to be able to withdraw their children from Religious Education".

Speaking in favour of the motion, Hilary Alcock, head teacher of Buntingsdale Primary School and Nursery in Shropshire, said schools needed to show they “respect what is important to pupils and make RE and entitlement for all”.

“Parents may know their children best, but they may not always know what is best for them,” she said.

“What is best for them is they grow up in modern Britain maybe outside of their own experience and their child’s primary socialisation.”

Sarah Hewitt-Clarkson, head of Anderton Park School in Birmingham who seconded of the motion, said RE was key to shield children from potential "groomers and radicalisers" who exploit differences.

She told the conference: "If it's laughable that we would withdraw our children from English or science why is it ok to withdraw from RE?

"We share many beliefs as human beings and are usually very different in a few. This is diversity and a good thing. Allowing withdrawal is not inclusive, it's divisive.

"Groomers and radicalisers exploit the ‘us and them’ syndrome, they exploit ignorance and narrow views of life. Radicalisation specifically encourages only feel and do.

"Learning about the teaching of love, not hate, has to be a good thing. Designing a Christmas card does not make you a Christian, visiting a Sikh temple does not make you a Sikh, being interested in Ramadan does not make a Muslim. They make you a participant in life."

Tony Hegarty, an NAHT member from Liverpool, said some parents used the rules to get their children out of certain aspects of religious education.

He said: “It saddens me to say that sometimes parents only exercise the right to withdraw children from RE when the topics being studied are Hinduism, Judaism or Islam, and that I think is an extremely divisive mechanism."


Group of Australian university students demand apology from Human Rights Commission in race case

A female administrator barred some students from a university facility on racial grounds but she now whines about the students calling her a racist.  So the students are being sued!

Two students accused the Human Rights Commission yesterday of “recklessly” breaching their human rights in a row stemming from a $250,000 damages claim brought by a worker who barred white students from a room at the Queensland University of Technology.

Jackson Powell and Calum Thwaites, who lodged separate complaints with the commission, are seeking a formal apology and compensation for their costs in defending racial hatred claims.

They say the commission has treated them with “flagrant indifference” because they are “white Anglo-Saxon heterosexual citizens who maintain a male gender identity”, have no criminal rec­ord, no outspoken political opinions and no record of participation in trade unions or religious sects.

Their lawyer, Tony Morris QC, said the commission’s conduct in managing the case had been “illogical, irrational and ­patently bizarre”, leading to gross unfairness to Mr Powell, Mr Thwaites and other students.

The Brisbane men, who strenuously deny being racist, have appealed to politicians to revisit section 18c of the Racial Discrimination Act, which has been used to restrict freedom of speech.

Commission president Gillian Triggs is expected to personally investigate the formal complaints from the students as the legislative framework prohibits her from delegating to another member.

The students say their rights were infringed because the commission failed for at least 14 months to notify them they were being accused of racial vilification under section 18c.

The delay meant that while QUT, its staff and its lawyers had 14 months to prepare a defence to the claims by QUT staffer Cindy Prior, Mr Thwaites was told of the serious complaint days before he was told to go to a conciliation conference ordered and run by the commission. He had no funds and little time to get legal advice or achieve a resolution before the case escalated to the Federal ­Circuit Court.

The racial vilification case was lodged in the commission in late May 2014 by Ms Prior, who ­alleges she was severely traumatised by Facebook posts from students responding to her action in preventing the men using QUT’s Oodgeroo Unit in May 2013.

The unit has been described as a “culturally safe space” for indigenous students, but there was no sign suggesting it was off-limits to white students who wanted to ­access computers that were not in use.

Ms Prior has been unable to work for 2½ years and wants $250,000 from QUT and the students. The students have insisted their posts were innocuous, harmless and a legitimate ­expression of their freedom of speech.

The FOI documents show that Mr Thwaites and other students were not told they were accused of racial vilification in the commission until late last July.

A file note by commission officer Ting Lim on July 28 states she advised the university’s solicitor that QUT “has known about this complaint for over year … it’s not the fault of the commission that the QUT has waited a week before the (conciliation conference) to notify the students.

“If a student is notified and wants to attend next week, they will have to make time”.

Federal Circuit Court judge Michael Jarrett has reserved his decision since a March 11 hearing in which the students sought to have Ms Prior’s racial vilification case dismissed.


Monday, May 02, 2016

Boston public school closings are tough but necessary

As students flee poorly-run classes for charters and the suburbs.  But the guy below sounds as if he is pissing into the wind, advocating for a lost cause

WITH ENROLLMENT at Boston Public Schools (BPS) falling, the school committee voted to close 22 schools as the first step in a modernization plan to reduce facilities costs and maximize the resources going directly into classrooms.

Sound familiar?  The catch: The year was 1952, which proves there’s some truth to the old adage that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Late last year, an independent audit found that BPS buildings have a huge amount of excess capacity, not a surprise, given that enrollment has shrunk by nearly half since the early 1970s. Depending on whom you ask, right-sizing the district would save between $20 million and $90 million annually. From a policy perspective, then, school consolidation is a no-brainer. But the politics are a different story.

Boston’s 1952 effort was spearheaded by the New Boston Committee, a good-government group that sprang up after James Michael Curley was finally dispatched once and for all in the 1949 mayoral election. Two years later, most of the winners of city council and school committee elections were NBC endorsees. The group and its founder – Jerry Rappaport, who went on to become the developer for Boston’s controversial West End project – were on top of the world.

But that all unraveled with their embrace of school closings. By 1953 the plan was dead, done in by opposition from affected parents, as well as from teachers and other school personnel who would have faced layoffs. A headline from the now-defunct Boston Post correctly declared that the NBC was "finished as an effective force in Boston politics."

Boston isn’t the only place where closing and consolidating schools is hard. Between 2007 and 2008, former Washington D.C. schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee shuttered 23 schools in response to plummeting enrollment. The 2010 city election became a referendum on her tenure. D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty, who appointed Rhee and staunchly supported her, was defeated in the Democratic primary.

Declining enrollment took such a toll in Philadelphia that one city school with a capacity of 1,071 students was operating with only 193. Add to that a budget crisis so severe that schools nearly failed to open on time in both 2013 and 2014. But even then, a plan to close 37 schools was ultimately whittled down to 23.

Recent demonstrations against proposed cuts at BPS have made headlines, but a new report from the Boston Municipal Research Bureau finds that the city’s school budget has increased by more than 20 percent over the last five years and in excess of 40 percent over the last decade.

An additional $20 million to $90 million per year would go a long way to alleviate future school funding crunches. Such consolidation should also improve educational quality. By reducing facilities-related expenses, a right-sized BPS could free up more money for what matters most: classroom instruction.

In politics, passionate minorities routinely overpower less motivated majorities. Parents whose children’s schools would close and school personnel facing layoffs would certainly be the loudest voices in the right-sizing debate.

But elected officials have a greater responsibility — and it’s to the thousands of other, largely voiceless, Boston students who would benefit from consolidation.


Department of Education Policing Universities with Student Aid Enforcement Unit

The expanding education bureaucracy inflates tuition costs

The Department of Education, in its latest move to enlarge the ever-expanding education bureaucracy, has announced plans to create a Student Aid Enforcement Unit to better respond to “predatory institutional activity.” The Student Aid Enforcement Unit was established following an investigation of prohibited tactics in student recruiting. It will apply to any school receiving federal aid.

The unit, which will be led by former Federal Trade Commission (FTC) official Robert Kaye and housed under Federal Student Aid (FSA), will consist of four sub-units focused on investigations, borrower defense claims, administrative actions and appeals, and the disclosure of campus crime statistics. The initial unit will include more than 50 employees.

The vague, open-ended language of Department of Education Regulations allows for an exponential increase in smaller regulations. For example, current regulation requires an institution to administer federal aid “with adequate checks and balances in its system of internal controls.”

However, for some, this already-overreaching regulation is not enough. Earlier this month, the Center for American Progress (CAP) released a report, “Looking in All the Wrong Places: How the Monitoring of Colleges Misses What Matters Most,” calling for further regulation in higher education. CAP’s suggestions include measures such as devoting greater staff time and training to reviews and establishing special teams that monitor advertising and recruitment.

Critics of the Student Aid Enforcement unit have questioned the underlying motives of the Department of Education and have vocalized concerns over the Obama Administration’s unfair targeting of the for-profit institution industry. One higher education policy analyst, denouncing the new unit as a publicity move, asked:

“Does the department really need a new initiative to deal with problematic institutions, or is this a public relations move to try to convince the public the department really, really cares about students?” – Neal McCluskey, Director of the Cato Institute Center for Educational Freedom

McClusky’s assertion that the Department of Education is in need of a good public relations move is not unfounded. In addition to the recent negative media attention surrounding the Common Core opt-out movement, the department is engulfed in scandals regarding its highest officials.

A mere few days before the department’s announcement of the unit, USDOE Chief Information Officer Danny Harris testified before the Congressional Oversight and Reform Committee regarding allegations of impropriety. In the hearing, Harris admitted to the Inspector General his failure to report to the IRS income relating to two side businesses. Internal corruption in the Department of Education is particularly alarming now that the agency is now asking Congress for $13.6 million in funding for the Student Aid Enforcement Unit in 2017.

This expensive request indicates that the Department of Education is not only sticking their noses in matters of higher education, but also wasting millions of tax dollars in the process.

In creating the Student Aid Enforcement Unit, the Department of Education once again demonstrates that it is blind to the long-term effects of overreach. The department, while trying to solve the problem of skyrocketing tuition, fails to see the expensive, vast bureaucracy it has created surrounding higher education.

If anyone is “looking in all the wrong places” it is the Department of Education. The problem seems to be hiding in plain sight.


Greenies trying to worm their way into Australian grade school classes
A new program is being launched to Primary Schools during Term Two by the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) Australia. The Future Generations program focuses on bringing the cross curriculum priority of sustainability into every subject – from the Arts to Humanities and English.

Through consultation with Primary School teachers across the country, FSC Australia found that incorporating sustainability into subjects other than science was sometimes difficult and resources were limited or hard to find. “We are a five star sustainable school and sustainability is core to our values, but we still struggle to integrate sustainability into lessons. And it’s so important for the children to take an active interest in sustainability and the future of our world,” said Stephen Rothwell, Principal, Chatham Primary School.

Working closely with Deakin University and with the support of Tork® Professional Hygiene, FSC Australia has developed a series of lesson plans and activity sheets. These free lesson plans are available for primary levels from one up to six and are inline with AusVELS curriculum. The lesson plans and activities are creative and thought-provoking and cover topics including deforestation, ecology and the food chain.

The role of FSC is to help take care of forests, their wildlife and the people who live and work within and around them. Forests provide material for so many things in our lives such as books, tissues, furniture, buildings and more. As Adam Beaumont, CEO of FSC Australia puts it, “By ensuring these resources are managed responsibly, we at FSC seek to strike a balance between the needs of society and the needs of the forest. The Future Generations program aims to increase awareness of FSC and its role within the next generation.”

The Future Generations Lesson Plans and Activity Sheets are available and free to download through the FSC Australia website.

Press release from FSC

Sunday, May 01, 2016

Sleeping Dogs Are Waking

The university will either change soon or simply implode; its present course is unsustainable and rests on the premise that schizophrenic deans and presidents can still manage to write and say things to student cry bullies that they hope their donors and alumni never read or hear.

Colleges overcharge insolvent students through tuition increases far beyond the annual rate of inflation—the Ponzi scheme predicated on guaranteed federal loans that cannot be repaid by poorly educated graduates and drop-outs, many with little skills or demonstrable education. Obama has already promised relief to the disabled student debtor: expect that more amnesties will follow, probably predicated on the basis of race, class, and gender. In the meantime, the number of disabled indebted students will mysteriously soar.

In response, the university freely imposes speech codes, allows racial segregation, and winks at censorship of texts. It has suspended due process in cases of allegations of sexual assault, and allows 1930s-like violence (reminiscent of the Brownshirts) to disrupt public lectures and assemblies—if the agendas of the protestors profess social awareness. Only the hard sciences and professional schools in engineering, mathematics, and medicine have for the moment partially escaped the ruin.

Online colleges are far cheaper and more concerned with offering skill sets for cash. Their spread has so far been checked by the lack of general education enrichment, by the mythical college experience of physically living in or walking about a beautiful campus, and by the lack of prestige accorded a for-profit, online diploma. But if the traditional American college has largely given up on liberal education (due to its deductive and politicized mandatory –studies courses), if being on a campus can equate to an unpleasant ordeal of thought policing and mob rule, and if a diploma from a major university does not suggest that one knows anything about history, literature, science, or basic facts concerning our civilization, why would the university need to continue? Cui bono?

It runs now partly on past momentum, and partly because taxpayers and alumni donors still subsidize it. If a majority were to feel that their money only empowers fascism among faculty and administration, and if they were to conclude that students are not sympathetic in their indebtedness, but rather increasingly arrogant and ignorant in their passive aggressions, then they might well simply pull the plug on what is becoming their Frankenstein monster.


US Spends $600 Billion/Year on Education, But Large Majority of H.S. Seniors Not College-Ready

Despite the fact that the U.S. spends more than $600 billion per year on public education, a large majority of high school seniors are not ready for college-level work in math and reading, according to the latest results of the 2015 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as “the nation’s report card”.

Demonstrating proficiency in a core subject like math or reading is considered proof of being academically prepared for college-level courses.

However, just 25 percent of 12th graders tested “Proficient” or above in math on the 2015 NAEP, down slightly from the 26 percent reported in 2013.

That means that three-quarters of the nation’s soon-to-be-graduating high school seniors are not prepared to succeed in college math courses.

Although more 12th graders (37 percent) tested “Proficient” or above in reading, that figure was also down one percent from the 2013 results.

According to NAEP, nearly two-thirds of high seniors do not have the written language skills they will need in college.

The average score of the 31,900 12th graders who took the 2015 NAEP math test was 152, which was down in all four content areas and one point lower than the average score (153) in 2013, Peggy Carr, acting commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), told reporters during a webinar on Wednesday announcing the latest NAEP results.

Only three percent of those taking the math assessment tested “Advanced.” Another 22 percent tested “Proficient”, with 37 percent of test-takers demonstrating a “Basic” mastery of mathematics.

However, the largest contingent – 38 percent – tested at the lowest “Below Basic” level. “There is a larger proportion of students at the bottom of the distribution” than in 2013, Carr acknowledged.

English Language Learners, who posted a six-point gain, were the only student sub-group to significantly increase their math scores over 2013 levels, she pointed out.

The average score in reading (287) was not significantly different from the average score reported in 2013 (288), Carr said.

Six percent of high school seniors scored in the “Advanced” reading category, with 31 percent testing “Proficient”, and 35 percent scoring in the “Basic” range.

However, 28 percent failed to demonstrate even basic mastery of the written word – three percent more than in 2013.

Carr noted that the 2015 NAEP results remained virtually unchanged for various racial and ethnic sub-groups compared to 2013. In general, white and Hispanic males tended to do better on the math tests, while females overall did better on the reading assessments, she pointed out.

Education experts also noted that average math scores were higher for students who took more challenging pre-calculus and calculus classes, and average reading scores were the highest for students who reported reading more than 20 pages of text a day in school or while doing their homework assignments.

When asked how the latest reading and math NAEP scores compared to student test scores worldwide, Carr replied that “we will wait to see” when the next international results are released in November and December.

According to the latest available figures from NCES, “the 50 states and D.C. reported $603.7 billion in funding collected for public elementary and secondary education in 2013.”

State and local governments provided 91 percent of all education funding, while the federal government paid the remaining 9 percent.


Liberty University to Allow Students to Keep Handguns in Dormitories

Liberty University in Virginia is allowing students with concealed handgun permits recognized by the state, to keep their weapons in their dorms beginning next fall.

Students’ weapons would need to be kept in safes inside the residence halls at the private Christian university.

The News & Advance reports, the policy change was given the go-ahead by the university's board of trustees last week.

Previously, the policy allowed for concealed carry on campus by students over 21 years of age, but they were not allowed to have the weapon in residence halls and had to store it in “a secured container or compartment in their vehicle while on University property. “

University President Jerry Falwell Jr. announced last year that eligible students could carry guns on campus and publicly encouraged students to arm themselves.