Saturday, February 19, 2022

A Student Sleuth Found Evidence that Our University Practices Reverse Racism. Here’s Why I Advised Him Not to Publish It

It's stupid enrolling underqualified students in advanced courses. They will mostly just flunk the courses concerned

At the American university where I teach, one of my assigned tasks is to advise undergraduates—mostly freshmen and sophomores. This essay describes a conversation I had in 2017 with one of those advisees. I will call him Daniel.

Daniel was a sophomore at the time. He had been an advisee of mine for a year already, and I’d come to understand that he was a prodigy. I’d also formed a hypothesis, based on a certain bluntness and lack of social tact he exhibited, that Daniel might be on the autism/Asperger’s spectrum. He seemed weak on interpersonal skills and narrowly, even obsessively, focused on math and science. During his first year of university studies, Daniel had taken a number of upper-level math and physics courses that none of my other advisees had taken, and had earned flat As in almost all of them. His GPA probably would have been a perfect 4.0 if the university had allowed him to take only math and science courses. As it was, it was a 3.85.

At the end of his freshman year, Daniel applied for admission to a competitive honors program that our university runs, but he was rejected. He came to my office to discuss this—or, rather, to complain about it. I soon realized that he was not just disappointed; he was angry. Daniel believed he’d been treated unfairly. He believed he was the victim of reverse racism.

I told Daniel that I understood why he was upset, but I reminded him that the program he’d applied to is highly competitive. The admissions committee presumably received many strong applications. There is always some subjectivity in admissions decisions, I noted, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Subjectivity isn’t the same as unfairness.

Daniel said he wouldn’t be upset if he believed that the applicants who’d been admitted to the program were as strong as him, or stronger. But he said he had reason to believe they were not.

I asked him what he meant by that. He then pulled a laptop out of his backpack and opened up a spreadsheet.

Daniel proceeded to explain that he and a friend had both applied to the same honors program and had both been rejected. Afterwards, they wondered who had been accepted. They scrutinized the social-media accounts of fellow students and found several dozen applicants who’d posted about being accepted. A lot of them, they noticed, were either African American or Hispanic. Daniel and his friend then asked around and identified several dozen students who had been rejected, many of whom were Caucasian or Asian. This made Daniel and his friend suspicious. They decided to create a spreadsheet—the one Daniel was showing me—to organize the data they’d collected; and then they decided to gather more.

Daniel explained that he and his friend wanted to find a measure of academic achievement that they could track statistically. A student’s GPA is not public information, but the Dean’s List is; so they were able to use that as a discrete variable—Dean’s List, yes or no—as a rough proxy for achievement. Daniel explained to me that it would have been better to use a continuous variable (like GPA), but he and his friend had to work with what they had.

Daniel explained that he and his friend had performed various kinds of statistical analysis on the data, and had concluded that admission to the honors program was closely related to Dean’s List status within certain groups. However, there were large differences in acceptance rates across those groups. Overall, he told me, the factor that explained the most variance in admissions outcomes was (as he’d suspected) the race or ethnicity of the applicant. The patterns were quite stark. African Americans who weren’t on the Dean’s List had a better overall chance of being admitted to the honors program than whites or Asians who were on the Dean’s List.

I told him that I thought he might be right about why he hadn’t been accepted into the program. It looked to me like the push for diversity might have been the cause, or at least a key factor, in regard to the decision—though it was impossible to be certain. I then briefly (and perhaps half-heartedly) outlined the usual justification for affirmative-action programs.

But what I emphasized most was that I thought it would be unwise for Daniel to launch a campaign against the admissions committee, even if his data was as strong as he seemed to think it was. I told him that a campaign of the sort he was considering would almost certainly fail. He might get some catharsis out of it in the short run, but it would probably do no good in the long run. The committee was unlikely to revisit its decisions or change its procedures going forward. Support for affirmative action is almost universal among academics. Very few are even willing to express hesitations or second thoughts on this issue, lest they be deemed racists. The people who make these decisions feel good about the people who benefit from affirmative action, and they avert their gaze, as much as possible, from the people who are harmed by it. They might be embarrassed by Daniel and his friend’s data, but they would probably not abandon their approach.

I warned Daniel that I thought his plan might end up doing him a lot of harm. If he chose to make his exposé public, the most likely outcome would be that some student or faculty member would accuse him of being a racist. Publishing his data would probably end up hurting him rather than helping him.

When Daniel heard me use the word “racist,” even in this conjectural, non-accusatory way, he responded angrily. He told me that he was not a racist. He had voted for Democrats in the 2016 election and hated Donald Trump. And as it happens, I had reason to believe this was true. The morning after that election, Daniel had come to visit me in my office, deeply troubled by what a Trump presidency might mean for scientific research and funding.

Daniel told me that he believed affirmative-action policies were justified for college admissions, but he did not think they should be used to filter out qualified applicants to honors programs and graduate programs.

He then spoke for several minutes about his own ethnic background. He reminded me that he was Jewish, and told me that both of his parents had put up with a lot of antisemitic discrimination in their universities and workplaces. Back then, they were regarded as “non-white” and were discriminated against as a result; now (ironically) he was considered “white” and was being discriminated against on that basis.

I listened with real sympathy. The situation seemed unfair to me, too. To be honest, I’ve never been quite clear on how we’re supposed to get over centuries of judging people by their skin color or ethnicity by paying more and more attention to skin color and ethnicity.

In the past few years, in fact, I’ve increasingly had the sense that affirmative action may be backfiring. Policies meant to correct historical iniquities seem to be stoking racial resentment. Like Daniel, I dislike Trump intensely. I don’t have much in common with his followers, and I certainly don’t think of myself as one of them. But I do, increasingly, understand some of the grievances that motivate them. I wish I didn’t, but I do.

In the end, as I’ve mentioned, I didn’t tell Daniel about any of my personal experiences or private thoughts. I assured myself that doing so might be counterproductive: after all, my goal was to calm Daniel down, not rile him up.

I told Daniel that he could still succeed at our university, and get accepted by a top graduate school, even if he never made it into the honors program—as long as he just kept on taking challenging math and science classes and posting good grades. That would carry the day. He would move ahead, while the unqualified would fall by the wayside, unable to do the heavy intellectual lifting that advanced courses required.


UK: Government rolls out ‘guidance’ on teaching racism in schools

The government is rolling out guidance to schools on how to approach teaching racism for the first time, following controversial ministerial intervention in classrooms.

Schools are already required to teach in a politically impartial way, but this instruction from ministers will specifically advise teacher on how to address “sensitive issues”.

The guidance comes after the education secretary, Nadhim Zahawi, waded into a debate over the teaching of anti-racism in Brighton schools last week, and ordered an investigation after becoming “concerned” by non-discriminatory resources being shared with students.

Slides from race training given to teachers in Brighton and Hove schools leaked to The Sunday Telegraph said that “between the ages of three and five, children learn to attach value to skin colour: white at the top of the hierarchy and black at the bottom”.

“Over the last few years, there has been much discussion about political impartiality in schools, often in the context of specific political issues and movements,” the education secretary said of the government’s unique guidance.

“I know that this has at times been difficult for school leaders, teachers, and staff, as they navigate how to handle and teach about these complex issues sensitively and appropriately.

“That is why I’m pleased this government is publishing clear guidance explaining schools’ existing legal duties on political impartiality.”

The manual suggests that the teaching of historical figures should focus on “factual information” about them, and that teaching of the British empire should be presented in “a balanced manner”.

One scenario refers to teaching pupils about racism and cautions that teachers should be aware that campaign groups such as Black Lives Matter “cover partisan political views”.

The recommendations say that “teachers should be clear that racism has no place in our society” when covering this topic with pupils, and should “help pupils to understand facts about this and the law”.

It adds that some campaign groups such as BLM may cover “partisan political views … which go beyond the shared principle that racism is unacceptable, which is a view schools should reinforce”.

“Examples of such partisan political views include advocating specific views on how government resources should be used to address social issues, including withdrawing funding from the police,” it adds.

The guidance says that for recent historical events, “including those which are particularly contentious and disputed, political issues may be presented to pupils”.

It also states: “This includes many topics relating to empire and imperialism, on which there are differing partisan political views, and which should be taught in a balanced manner,” adding that schools should be free to teach pupils about significant political figures, including “those who have controversial and contested legacies”.

But it adds that this may need to be reserved for older pupils, and says that it could be advisable to focus teaching on “what these figures are most renowned for and factual information about them”, if teachers think pupils may not be able to understand the full context of contested information about their lives.

The guidance states that when teachers are discussing the decriminalisation of homosexuality with pupils, they should not present discriminatory beliefs held at the time in an uncritical way, or as though they are acceptable today.

It adds that pupils should not be presented with views that oppose fundamental societal values, such as views denigrating freedom of speech or the democratic process.


School District’s ‘Equity Specialist’ Admits How They Are Indoctrinating Students

It appears that states like Texas, which has taken steps to try to prevent the advancement of the controversial idea of Critical Race Theory (CRT), may have rushed through their legislation too quickly, leaving gaps in the bill’s language, which those on the left are exploiting.

A former “equity specialist” at a Texas school district admitted that its schools teach through a Critical Race Theory (CRT) “lens,” according to videos obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Jonathan Pérez, a former “Equity Specialist” at Fort Worth Independent School District in Fort Worth, Texas, says the school district teaches through a CRT lens, during an August 2020 equity training session for teachers, according to a video leaked by a teacher and obtained by the DCNF from Carlos Turcios.

Mr. Turcios is an activist who spent four years on FWISD’s Racial Equity Committee and is now an education activist fighting CRT in the district.

“The fact is there are so many … things, policies, practices, procedures, programmings that we have that have been deep … in our system so long that when we really dissect it through a Critical Race Theory lens, is one of the lens that we use, we see how these inequities come up and show up,” Pérez said during the training, according to video footage obtained by the DCNF.

In one of their glaring hypocrisies though, while insisting the culture becomes color blind, they teach those attending their classes to view nearly EVERY interaction with people, in terms of race.

Instead of building people’s self-confidence and skills, which provides them with the best opportunity to compete in the workforce, their racial leadership works to reduce standards, tries to end the traditional merit-based system for determining promotions, and confusingly promotes antiracism by teaching racism against those with “white privilege”.

“Racism shows up on our way to work, on the radio, on the TV shows, again, it shows up in multiple forms,” he said. Peréz added that it reminded him of a tweet he had seen that said “racism is so deeply embedded in our country, that when you protest against it, people think you’re protesting against the United States.”

He said the goal of their racial equity team is “to dismantle institutional and systemic racism” in the district “at the community level, school board level, the district level, the campus level and the student level.”

The district holds an annual “Racial Equity Summit,” where speakers and administrators discuss equity initiatives that FWISD is implementing, but Peréz said you “can’t dismantle a 400 year old racist system in one day or two conversations.”

At the December 2021 FWISD Equity Summit, racial equity consultant Altheria Caldera gave a presentation where she said you should “never be embarrassed to be antiracist” and explained it is “totally okay to be woke,” according to a video of the event shared with the DCNF.

“In fact, you should be embarrassed not to be [antiracist] … school board members and other elected officials … [if] they are hesitant at any point to say that they are antiracist, they don’t need to be in that position,” she said. “Because, if you are not anti-racist, what are you?”

Peréz explained that to “make this kind of change it starts at the very top” with school board members.

“Our school board members passed a racial equity policy that allows us … I don’t want to say allows us, but … gives us the opportunity to bring these conversations to the forefront without the fear of getting in trouble or retaliation,” he said.

“Especially for our white brothers and sisters, when we get into these conversations, it gets so hard that they many times either they just don’t want to listen to it or even for our colleagues of color, students of color, like it’s so hard that people would just rather not deal with it,” he added.

Teaching people to be racists, in their journey to defeat racism, only makes sense to those who immerse their selves in far-left bubbles.

The radical group never leaves the Kool-Aid sessions long enough to see that their views of people with white skin areas anti-Ameican and the abuses people of color experienced based solely on their skin color too.




Friday, February 18, 2022

'The city of San Francisco has risen up!' Three woke school board members are BOOTED OUT in recall election

Three woke San Francisco school board members who invested more time on social justice issues - like the botched renaming of 44 schools - instead of reopening them during the pandemic have been ousted in a rare recall election funded largely in part by Silicon Valley billionaires and millionaires.

In a hot-button election, 70% of parents in the liberal city voted to recall the board members on Tuesday, according to the San Francisco Department of Elections.

The school board has seven members, all Democrats, but only three were eligible to be recalled: school board President Gabriela López, Vice President Faauuga Moliga and Commissioner Alison Collins.

The effort was well-funded by some of Silicon Valley's billionaires and millionaires, led by early Apple investor Arthur Rock, who poured more than $500,000 of his billion-dollar fortune into the recall. PayPal CEO David Sacks - who has three children and opposes mask mandates and school closures - donated $75,000, and venture capitalist Garry Tan donated $26,000.

Among parents' main frustrations were that the school board failed to address reopening schools during the pandemic, and instead focused their efforts on renaming 44 because they claimed they were named after 'problematic' American icons, like Paul Revere and Abraham Lincoln.

But committee members embarrassed themselves after it was revealed they did not consult historians and used inaccurate Wikipedia entries and other non-scholarly sources to determine which personalities were racist and problematic.

'The city of San Francisco has risen up and said this is not acceptable to put our kids last,' said Siva Raj, a parent who helped launch the recall effort.

'Talk is not going to educate our children, it's action. It's not about symbolic action, it's not about changing the name on a school, it is about helping kids inside the school building read and learn math.'

The school board also scrapped merit-based competitive admissions at elite $42,000-a-year Lowell High School, which disadvantaged Asian American students.

San Francisco Mayor London Breed is now tasked with appointing replacements to the board - who will also likely be Democrats.

'The voters of this city have delivered a clear message that the school board must focus on the essentials of delivering a well-run school system above all else,' Mayor London Breed, who supported the recall, said in a statement. 'San Francisco is a city that believes in the value of big ideas, but those ideas must be built on the foundation of a government that does the essentials well.'

The election was the first recall in San Francisco since 1983, since a failed attempt to remove then-Mayor Dianne Feinstein after she passed a handgun ban.

Opponents called the recall a waste of time and money, as the district faces a number of challenges including a $125 million budget deficit and the need to replace retiring Superintendent Vincent Matthews.

But parents in the politically liberal city launched the recall effort in January 2021 out of frustration over the slow reopening of district schools, while the board pursued the renaming of 44 school sites and the elimination of merit-based competitive admissions at the elite $42,000-a-year Lowell High School.

The campaign to recall the three school board members attracted major donations from Rock, the 95-year-old billionaire who was an early investor in Intel and Apple; as well as Sacks and Tan.

Rock, who has an estimated net worth of $1.1billion, has given nearly $400,000 directly to two recall committees, and an additional $150,000 to two political action committees supporting the effort, reported The Daily Beast.

Committee members allegedly used references from Wikipedia and other non-scholarly sources to determine which personalities were racist and problematic.

Several of those citations has now been proven to be factually incorrect:

1. One committee member urged that the name of acclaimed American poet James Russell Lowell should be stripped off a high school because a Wikipedia citation stated that he did 'not want black people to vote'.

However, that claim is false - and scholarly articles assert that Lowell 'unequivocally advocated giving the ballot to the recently freed slave'.

2. The committee concluded that Paul Revere's name should be removed from a middle school after citing an article from the History Channel website.

Members alleged that Revere's military activities were tied to 'the conquest of the Penobscot Indians', which was untrue.

3. James Lick - who resided in San Francisco - was also deemed 'racist' after members failed to critically read an article about the famous 19th century businessman.

The committee stated that Lick had funded a sculpture showing an American Indian lying at the feet of white men.

However, in actuality, Lick died 18 years before the sculpture was created, and it was only partially funded by his posthumous estate.

Public records indicate that during the 1980s and 1990s, Rock donated money mainly to Republican candidates and causes, but over the past three decades he has emerged as a major Democratic donor, including to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

A major proponent of charter schools, Rock has poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into school board elections in districts from coast to coast, including Los Angeles, Minnesota, New Mexico, Georgia and New York, reported Mission Local.

Additionally, Rock has donated some $12million to charter schools and organizations that promote charter schools all over the country. In San Francisco, the school board has been hostile to the proliferation of charter schools. Opponents of charter schools believe that charters draw the top students from regular public schools, leaving behind the most vulnerable students to be educated, with fewer resources, and reducing the overall quality of public education.

The second-highest donor to the recall effort in San Francisco is David Sacks, the founding COO of PayPal and general partner at his venture capital fund, Craft Ventures, who contributed $75,000 to push out the three school board members, after bankrolling a failed effort to recall Gov Gavin Newsom.

Sacks, who has been vocal about his opposition to school closures and mask mandates, tweeted after the vote on Tuesday: 'Every child deserves a high-quality education. School boards and administrators work for parents and students, not the other way round. Competence matters more than ideology. That's what San Francisco voters affirmed tonight.'

Garry Tan, co-founder of Initialized Capital, contributed just over $25,000 to the recall effort. Tan began donating to local elections last year, pouring $50,000 into a campaign to recall the ultra-progressive San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin, who has been widely criticized as being soft-on-crime.

The mayor, one of the most prominent endorsers of the recall, praised the parents, saying they 'were fighting for what matters most - their children.'

The pressures of the pandemic and distance learning have made school board races a hot-button topic as frustrations over pandemic measures reach a boiling point.

In a statement on Wednesday, House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy said that San Francisco parents were standing up to have their voices heard.

'Over the past two years they have watched liberal school boards in their communities prioritize renaming schools over re-opening classrooms,' he said. 'School boards have used 'equity' and 'social justice' as an excuse to discriminate and lower standards for children. This is exactly what the San Francisco school board did and why three of their members were recalled in a landslide.'

Many commenters on Twitter greeted the news of the recall with glee, mixed with disbelief.

'There is hope for #California yet! Mindblowing that this is in #SanFrancisco!' tweeted one user. 'The recall votes were not even close. This was a powerful statement!'

Another weighed in: 'DANG I AM SO HAPPY ABOUT THIS!! SUPER PROUD of California right now....and that is NOT a sentence I ever thought would be coming out of my mouth!'

In San Francisco, one of the nation's most liberal cities, the recall effort split Democrats. Breed, a Democrat, had criticized the school board for being distracted by 'political agendas.'

The ousted board members - Collins, Lopez and Moliga - had defended their records, saying they prioritized racial equity because that was what they were elected to do.

Both sides agreed that San Francisco's school board and the city itself had embarrassed itself under the national spotlight.

One of the first issues to grab national attention was the board's January 2021 decision to rename 44 schools they said honored public figures linked to racism, sexism and other injustices. On the list were Abraham Lincoln, George Washington and trailblazing US Senator Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat.

Instead of consulting historians to inform their decisions, the committee members used inaccurate Wikipedia entries to justify renaming the schools.

The school board's plan to scrap merit-based admissions at the elite Lowell High School, where most students are Asian, drew ire from local parents

After an uproar, the school board scrapped the plan.

Collins came under fire again for tweets she wrote in 2016 that were widely criticized as racist. In them Collins, who is black, said Asian Americans used 'white supremacist' thinking to get ahead and were racist toward black students.

Racism against Asian Americans has come under a renewed focus since reports of attacks and discrimination escalated with the spread of the coronavirus, which first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China.

Collins said the tweets were taken out of context and posted before she held her school board position. She refused to take them down or apologize for the wording and ignored calls to resign from parents, Breed and other public officials.

Collins turned around and sued the district and her colleagues for $87million, fueling yet another pandemic sideshow. The suit was later dismissed.

Many Asian parents were already angered by the board's efforts to end merit-based admissions at the elite Lowell High School, where Asian students are the majority.

As a result, many Asian American residents were motivated to vote for the first time in a municipal election. The grassroots Chinese/API Voter Outreach Task Force, which formed in mid-December, said it registered 560 new Asian American voters.

Ann Hsu, a mother of two who helped found the task force, said many Chinese voters saw the effort to change the Lowell admissions system as a direct attack.

'It is so blatantly discriminatory against Asians,' she said. In the city's Chinese community, Lowell is viewed as a path children can take to success.


Now woke headteacher who banned punishments and shouting at children forces pupils to go VEGETARIAN 'to stop climate change'

Parents have blasted a 'ludicrous' rule forcing pupils at a primary school to become vegetarian to 'help the planet'.

Barrowford Primary School in Lancashire has banned meat from lunchboxes and its canteen in order to educate children about the environmental impact of eating animals.

The rule was introduced last year, but parents were not told until a letter was sent out by the school on Thursday.

In the letter, headteacher Rachel Tomlinson said she had made the decision in order to 'stop climate change'.

She cited the carbon footprint caused by the livestock industry and that meat and dairy products 'come at a huge environmental cost.'

But parents have reacted with fury, with one mother threatening to move her daughter to a different school.

Barrowford Primary School was branded 'inadequate' by Ofsted in 2015 - the office's lowest possible rating, before achieving a 'good' rating just one year later.

Tomlinson at the time received widespread criticism for her controversial approach which prevented teachers from raising their voices and removed all punishments for misbehaving students.

Zoe Douglas told The Sun that the meat-free rule was 'a joke'.

She said: 'I think they forget that non-meat eaters and vegans have to take a lot of supplements.

'What supplements they getting instead at that school? Nothing, probably saving on food costs.'

Another parent, who wished to remain anonymous, said children should not be forced to give up meat.

'Vegetarian is a choice for when they are older. Why not accommodate the veggies, vegans, whatever and add to the menu instead of making our kids adapt?

'And to request parents pack lunches that are veggie as well, not to mention the local farmers, this is absolutely ludicrous.'

Tim Bonner, chief executive of the Countryside Alliance, told MailOnline that schools should 'stay well clear' of banning meat.

He said: 'It is increasingly clear that decisions to ban meat have become political statements used by some local authorities, which have nothing to do with the environment.

'Schools should obviously stay well clear of going down that route.

'While providing youngsters with the knowledge of how food is sourced and talking about balanced diets should be encouraged, it must not be up to individual head teachers to dictate whether or not meat can be consumed by its pupils.

'That decision must come down to parents and guardians and them alone.

Barrowford Primary School's 'inadequate' 2015 Ofsted rating
Awarding the school the worst rating, Gill Jones, lead inspector said: 'Teaching is inadequate.

'Staff expectations of what pupils can achieve are not high enough.

'Behaviour requires improvement. In lessons, pupils do not always concentrate on what they are doing and are too easily distracted.

'The teaching of reading is ineffective.

'In some classes, the weaker readers read aloud too infrequently to an adult and young children are not prepared for the curriculum.'

The school later regained its 'Good' rating in 2016, but it is unclear whether Tomlinson continued her controversial approach in scrapping all punishments for misbehaviour.

'Schools would be better off teaching the value of sourcing nutritious, sustainable meat produce from local farmers and could benefit from listening to those stalwarts of our countryside directly.'


Leader Of California Teachers Union Insists On Masking Children, Attends Rams Game Maskless

California residents tend to roll with what’s trendy. And right now, it’s en vogue to support mask mandates, especially for children, while ignoring such mandates for yourself.

The most noteworthy current fashionistas in the state are people in positions of power. And that group now includes Jesse Aguilar, a member of the California Teachers Association Board of Directors, who was photographed without a mask at the Rams’ NFC Championship Game in late January.

Aguilar deemed it unnecessary to wear a mask, though he’s part of a teachers association that recently called to keep children wearing masks in schools.

A Twitter account for fed-up parents of students in Los Angeles public schools, @UTLAUncensored, blasted Aguilar on Monday evening, posting his maskless photo and the following message:

“This California Teachers Association Board of Directors Member, Jesse Aguilar, isn’t interested in a ‘cautious’ approach for adults, only our kids. This is Jesse Aguilar. He went to NFC championship game with 70k strangers – he is #DoneWithCovid but his Union wants kids masked.”

Aguilar’s hypocrisy is just the latest example of “rules for thee, not for me” amongst the CA elite. LA mayor, Eric Garcetti, also attended the NFC Championship and insisted he was “holding his breath” when a photograph of his maskless mug at the game surfaced and went viral on social media.

California governor Gavin Newsom posed maskless at the same Rams game attended by Aguilar and Garcetti, but assured everyone he only did so briefly for the photo op.

On Sunday, roughly 70,000 strangers, including Garcetti and a who’s who of A-list celebrities, attended the Super Bowl maskless, while children throughout California returned to school in masks on Monday.

Predictably, after he was caught maskless, Aguilar refused to except any blame and blatantly lied about his surroundings.

“This person wants to know where my mask was. It was in my pocket. I took it off for the picture. There was nobody in front of me,” Aguilar said via a since deleted Facebook post. “I’m glad to wear my mask in a pandemic. It’s not hard and it shows I care about the people around me. I was glad SoFi required proof of vaccination. Getting vaccinated is the sane thing to do in a pandemic. I’m glad sane people behave in a sane manner in an insane time. Where’s your mask?”

It’s just a shame they don’t (yet) make trendy masks for the lower half of the body. Aguilar could use one to hide his bullshit.




Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Does a Teacher Have a Right to Refuse to Call a Girl a Boy? Virginia’s Supreme Court May Decide

In 2018, a female student told teacher Peter Vlaming that she was transgender and wanted to be called by a masculine name. He agreed to call his student by the new name, but explained to the principal that he could not in good conscience use male pronouns for a female student. He was fired. (Photo: Alliance Defending Freedom)

A Virginia teacher was fired for refusing to call a girl a boy. Now, the state’s Supreme Court has the opportunity to decide whether a local school board violated the teacher’s legal rights.

A lawyer for French teacher Peter Vlaming asked Tuesday that the Virginia Supreme Court take up the case, Vlaming v. West Point School Board.

“No government can force any Virginian to express messages that violate their core beliefs,” Chris Schandevel told The Daily Signal after arguing for Vlaming before Virginia’s highest court.

Schandevel, a lawyer with the Christian legal organization Alliance Defending Freedom, asked the court “to reinstate the lawsuit that [Vlaming] filed in state trial court,” which dismissed the case without explanation last August.

As previously reported by The Daily Signal, the West Point School Board fired Vlaming in December 2018 after he declined to use male pronouns to refer to a female student who identified as a transgender male.

Almost a year later, Vlaming filed a lawsuit against the West Point School Board for breach of contract, arguing that the body violated his rights under the Virginia Constitution.

“Mr. Vlaming was not fired for something he said; he was fired for something that he could not say based on his religious beliefs,” Schandevel argued Tuesday.

“This is a case about compelled speech,” he said.

Lawyers for the West Point School Board did not present an argument before the Virginia Supreme Court.

Before being terminated, Vlaming taught French for seven years at West Point High School, about 40 miles east of Richmond.

In 2018, the female student in question gave the teacher a letter saying she was transgender and wanted to be called by a new masculine name. Vlaming agreed to call the student by the new name, but explained to his principal that he “couldn’t in good conscience pronounce masculine pronouns to refer to a girl,” he told The Daily Signal during an interview in 2020.

Vlaming said he tried to avoid using female pronouns with the student, but in the fall of 2018, he accidentally called the student “she” in front of the class. The same day, Vlaming was called to his principal’s office and put on administrative leave.

Superintendent Laura Abel said Vlaming could return to teach at West Point High if he would use male pronouns proactively to refer to the female student. Vlaming again explained that he could not in good conscience refer to a female as a male.

Abel recommended that Vlaming be fired, and the school board voted 5-0 to terminate him.

Vlaming loved teaching and was well liked by students. Some students spoke out in his defense after he was fired.

“I had huge support—students who truly came to my side and parents who came to my side to encourage me, to express their support,” Vlaming told “The Daily Signal Podcast” during a September 2021 interview.

His lawyer says that Vlaming, a father of four, has not been able to find a job at another public school because of his termination. He is seeking $1 million in damages.

If the Virginia Supreme Court takes up Vlaming’s case, arguments likely would be scheduled for the fall, Schandevel said.

“We’re very optimistic that they’re going to take the case,” Schandevel said. “And once they do take the case, we’re likewise equally optimistic that they will rule in Peter’s favor.”

In America, “protections for free speech and for free exercise of religion are just foundational for the functioning of our democracy,” Schandevel told The Daily Signal, “and this is a very important case to affirm that for all Virginians.”


San Diego County School Retracts ‘Wheel of Privilege’ Teaching Tool

A school in San Diego County claims it has removed a “Wheel of Privilege” graphic from its professional development training materials after the image was exposed on social media and parents objected.

The image was touted as part of professional development training by the Black Mountain Middle School in Poway Unified School District (PUSD), according to the Californians For Equal Rights Foundation (CFER), whose executive director posted the graphic on Twitter.

The “Wheel of Power/Privilege” teaching tool was designed to rank people by power and privilege based on skin color, body size, and gender identity, as well as citizenship, language, wealth, and other factors.

CFER stated in a Feb. 9 newsletter that it was “alarmed by such a such divisive narrative, rooted in critical race theory (CRT) and intended for middle-schoolers.”

“We exposed the issue on social media. In the meantime, PUSD parents and residents contacted the school leadership to demand explanations,” CFER stated.

The school’s principal, Scott Corso, indicated in an email sent to a parent on Feb. 7 that the graphic was shared as one idea at a Big IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity Equity Awareness) committee meeting “for a future professional growth day with educators.” The virtual meeting was open to the public.

“After further reflection on feedback received and working with Shawntanet Jara, PUSD Director of Equity and Improvement, we have modified our activities. We have decided not to use the graphic entitled ‘Wheel of Privilege,’ nor the video related to intersectionality,” Corso said in the email obtained by The Epoch Times.

Corso claimed in the email that the school is not teaching CRT.

“We have no interest in promoting Critical Race Theory. That is not our intent,” he wrote. “Our intent, as educators, is to examine our own personal biases in order to support all students and be the most inclusive school we can be.”

CFER disagrees.

“While the education establishment stubbornly denies their engagement with CRT, mounting evidence shows otherwise,” CFER stated in its newsletter.

“By now, it’s a moot point,” Wenyuan Wu, CFER’s executive director, told The Epoch Times on Feb. 9.

“We’re not talking about teaching critical race theory as a legal doctrine or legal hypothesis. We’re talking about propagating and inculcating key tenets of critical race theory such as race essentialism, intersectionality, and anti-racism as a bandage or solution to all observed problems in our society,” Wu said.

The claim CRT isn’t being promoted or is not “widely taught” in California schools is more than just an argument of semantics, Wu suggested. Rather, she contends, it’s a deliberate subversive tactic the “education establishment” commonly uses to hide from parents that they’re teaching “pseudoscientific ideas” based on the tenets of CRT to their children.

“Call it whatever you want. Call it Mickey Mouse. It does not change the fact that it’s teaching or indoctrinating our kids with very bad illiberal and un-American ideas about race in our society,” Wu said.

CFER sees the removal of the “Wheel of Power/Privilege” as small victory in its battle against CRT concepts. It encourages a “robust rebuttal to the narrative of victimhood and disempowerment.”

The next Big IDEA meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 15 at 6 p.m. on Zoom, Corso said in the email.


Maryland Legislature Considers Creating ‘Advisory Council’ to Collect Data on Homeschoolers

If we have learned anything about left-wing cultural revolutionaries over the past few years and decades, it’s that they insist that all conform to their view of “diversity.”

All are welcome, except for those who disagree.

That’s why it’s so troubling to see government authorities rope in, and attempt to control, people attempting to maintain their independence.

Maryland Delegate Sheila Ruth, a Baltimore County Democrat, recently proposed legislation in the Maryland House of Delegates that would create a deeply worrisome “advisory council” to watch over and gather data on homeschool families.

The 16-seat council would be staffed by four political appointees, four government officials, and eight members of the homeschool community. It would “gather information on the needs of homeschool parents and homeschool umbrella schools,” and would effectively sweep homeschool parents under the wing of a government agency.

This is precisely the sort of thing many homeschool parents wanted to avoid when they chose that path for their children in the first place.

Bethany Mandel, a conservative writer and homeschool mother living in Maryland, raised the alarm about this legislation and called out Ruth on Twitter.

In a message to The Daily Signal, Mandel explained why the legislation is so troubling.

The advisory council—whatever its current stated intent—could easily be used to browbeat homeschool families.

“They’ll pass more restrictive rules on us and say, ‘It was suggested by homeschooling families themselves! We have a council!’ (That they chose.),” Mandel wrote.

The Home School Legal Defense Association, a legal support group for homeschoolers based in neighboring Virginia, also warned about the potential for abuse by the proposed advisory board.

“This bill would create a quasi-official source for information on homeschooling, which would, in turn, minimize the effectiveness of grassroots homeschool groups and individual advocates,” HSLDA noted in a statement.

Homeschooling has thrived for decades without government assistance. Instead of creating a new bureaucratic entity to gather information on the needs of homeschool programs, HSLDA encourages government entities and actors to respect homeschooling programs by preserving liberty and avoiding unnecessary regulation.

The legislation was so worrisome that a group of members of the Maryland General Assembly called for the bill to be withdrawn.

The letter said that the advisory board would put an enormous amount of power in the hands “of just a few partisan political appointees” and that a 16-person advisory panel in no way could represent the diverse opinions of homeschool families in Maryland.

A petition calling on Ruth to withdraw HB 832 is seeking 2,500 signatures, and as of this writing, it has garnered nearly 1,700.

As troubling as the legislation is, it’s not happening in a vacuum.

Another piece of legislation, introduced in January, demonstrates the radical plans in store for the state’s public schools. House Bill 352 aims to create an American Studies and Social Equity Standards Advisory Board.

The purpose of the bill would be to redirect examinations of history in schools to be framed around race and ethnicity.

It essentially would mandate a laundry list of diversity, equity, and inclusion requirements for public schools in the state. One of the bill’s sponsors said it wasn’t “a critical race theory bill,” which is almost laughable. This legislation uses almost every buzzword imaginable related to critical race theory, just without literally saying “critical race theory.”

Clearly, Maryland legislators think their constituents are stupid.

Just as bad, evidence suggests that they will leave no stone unturned to bring leftist indoctrination to every K-12 public school student in the state.

It isn’t just happening at the state level.

Maryland’s largest school district, Montgomery County Public Schools, is going through an “Antiracist System Audit.” The interim superintendent, Monifa McKnight, recently released an update, announcing that Montgomery County school curriculums will now all flow “through an antiracist lens,” especially in social studies.

This comes from the Montgomery County Public Schools website:

This summer, a cross-office team was charged with creating a long-term plan to transform curriculum and develop interconnected and interdisciplinary learning experiences for students, PreK-12 that strengthens students’ sense of racial, ethnic, and tribal identities, helps students understand and resist systems of oppression, and empowers students to see themselves as change agents.

What this is effectively announcing is that the public schools are for the revolution, one based on racial essentialism, and they will be indoctrinating your kids to be loyal foot soldiers in the cause.

Oh, but weren’t we informed by left-wing media commentators that critical race theory isn’t in schools, and that it’s just a figment of our imaginations?

The fact is, this sort of pedagogy is being introduced and enforced around the country. The left-wing media can spin and twist and try to deny it, but parents are catching on to this being the reality.

That matters very much when considering Maryland’s proposed homeschool advisory board. Given the transformation of institutions—especially public schools—into engines of wokeness, it’s not hard to see how malicious such a governmental board could become.

An agency constructed to “gather information” and staffed by political appointees could quickly turn into a governmental hammer to bludgeon homeschool parents into looping their children into the cult of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

It should be no surprise that this effort comes as parents around the country have begun to protest the curriculums and policies of public schools, both for their embrace of critical race theory—or whatever they want to call its associated ideas—and absurdly restrictive COVID-19 policies.

The left’s attitude is that they have an inherent right to indoctrinate your children. Any attempt to stop them from doing so, from within the public school system or from without, is treated as illegitimate.

That’s why what’s happening in Maryland is so concerning and a sign of things to come.

They want you and your family to comply with the cultural revolution that’s sweeping our institutions. They won’t let you go. They don’t want you to have a choice until all your choices are the same.




Tuesday, February 15, 2022

School Assigns Seventh Graders to Read Novel Glamorizing Illegal Immigration

A Virginia parent says his seventh grade daughter was assigned to read a book meant to “elicit sympathy” for illegal immigrants.

At the end of January, Michael Erickson’s daughter and her classmates were assigned the 2007 novel “Crossing the Wire” by Will Hobbs.

The novel promotes a “leftist-leaning philosophy that we should just open up the borders and take whoever we want,” Erickson told The Daily Signal during a phone interview Tuesday.

Erickson’s daughter, whom he prefers not to name, attends Katherine Johnson Middle School in Fairfax, Virginia, about 20 miles west of Washington, D.C.

When he learned about the reading assignment for English class, Erickson did some research on Hobbs’ novel, which tells the story of 15-year-old Victor Flores and his harrowing journey north from Mexico to cross the border into America.

The novel depicts Flores’ goal as to find work and support his impoverished family. The boy hops trains, stows away in vehicles, and walks miles in the desert.

In his initial email Feb. 1 to his daughter’s English teacher, Erickson said, he took issue with the reading assignment because the novel relays this message: “Mexicans should be allowed to flood over the borders and into America, and we should feel sorry for them.”

Erickson told The Daily Signal that the purpose of the class is to “examine story development, and character development, and structure, and plot.” He added that the course itself is “laudable, just the selection of the book was … outside of what I felt was appropriate.”

Perhaps his daughter and the rest of the class could be “assigned an alternate book assignment to read that is more appropriate?” Erickson asked the teacher.

In reply, he received an email the following morning from the middle school’s principal, Tammara Silipigni, informing him that an assistant principal, Michele Johnson, would talk with him over the phone about the situation.

When Erickson spoke with Johnson Feb. 2, the father requested that the English class be assigned to read a different book.

The assistant principal told him that it was possible for his daughter to be assigned another novel, Erickson recalled, but that the rest of the class would continue reading “Crossing the Wire.”

When he asked Johnson whether other parents would be informed about the novel and given the option of their child reading a different book, Erickson said, the assistant principal said no.

The public school’s curriculum and what’s taught to students are “shrouded in secrecy,” Erickson told The Daily Signal.

Even when his daughter was doing virtual learning at home during the pandemic, Erickson said, her school lacked “transparency on what our children were being taught, which is a real sticking point with me, because except by accident, parents … are never provided an opportunity to understand what their kids are being indoctrinated in and taught, etc.”

Erickson filed a formal complaint with Fairfax County Public Schools, asking that Johnson Middle School reconsider the assignment.

Just before publication of this report, Silipigni emailed Erickson Thursday morning and told him that his daughter’s English class had been shifted to a writing assignment while his request for reconsideration of the book assignment moves forward.

Johnson Middle School did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment on Erickson’s account of what happened.

Illegal immigration remains a hotly contested issue for Americans as the Biden administration transports into the nation’s interior tens of thousands of migrants who cross the southern border unlawfully.

U.S. Customs and Border Patrol reports that monthly arrests at the border number in the hundreds of thousands, “a 30-year high,” former State Department official Dan Negrea and James Carafano, vice president for national security and foreign policy at The Heritage Foundation, wrote in a recent commentary. (The Daily Signal is the multimedia news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.)

Unless “media attention is brought to bear” on what is occurring in public schools, “then nothing changes and nothing is affected,” Erickson told The Daily Signal.

“Everybody’s complaints or objections [are] shooed away to the side,” he said, and the schools “continue to storm forward doing whatever they want.”


Ethnic Studies is Anti-American Racist Nonsense. American History IS Black History

Kevin Jackson

Once, I accidentally discovered a black history book in my school’s library. It must have been a “God-thang”, as we say in the vernacular.

As I thumbed through that book, I was overwhelmed at the things blacks accomplished. But as I read, I never felt slighted that my school wasn’t teaching me “black history”. I already felt empowered as an American; yes, a black American. And to see things specific to how blacks helped form America made me even more proud.

I would have loved to learn more specifically about the history of blacks in America. Nevertheless, I understood that my history classes were glimpses of history. Perhaps these stories were told from a particular perspective that favored whites. But such is history.

It was white men who discovered what would become America. And while their tactics were questionable by today’s standards, their actions built the best country in the world.

These days however, Leftists look at history in retrospect. They teach about an oppressive America, created by colonializing indigenous peoples. To this I say, “Who gives a sh*t! America is the best country in the world…period.”

Whatever got America to this point is ok by me. All countries have their bugaboos.

In a few hundred years, America has demonstrated its ability to overcome all our ills. Regardless, Leftists want to focus on America’s supposed ills, while wholly ignoring all the great things this country has given the world; like the mosaic of our people.

As Politico reported:, school districts have been attempting to divide America along racial lines.

In 2006, Tucson Unified School District’s Mexican American studies curriculum was relatively unknown. The program — a series of middle and high school classes highlighting Mexican American contributions to U.S. history and culture — had shown promise in lifting Latino students out of lower test score brackets and boosting graduation rates. Only a handful of detractors had shown up at school board meetings to grouse about the curriculum’s race-focused teachings.

Again, I have no problem with having Mexican kids learn about their historic contribution to America. The problem is the indoctrination these ethnic studies programs teach.
The article showcases the real agenda of these programs:

Then, Jonathan Paton, a Republican lawmaker representing Tucson at the time, got ahold of a recording of labor organizer and Chicano rights icon Dolores Huerta telling an auditorium of Tucson High School students, “Republicans hate Latinos.” Suddenly, GOP lawmakers in Phoenix were decrying “Raza Studies,” as the program was known, as a plot to indoctrinate children with ideas about white people as racists and people of color as their victims. (“Raza” is Spanish for “race,” though the teachers who adopted the name said the intended translation was more akin to “the people.”)

A legislative panel ordered school administrators to defend the program at the state capitol in Phoenix, with one lawmaker accusing the district of running a “sweatshop for liberalism.” By 2008, lawmakers were setting their sights on banning TUSD’s Mexican American studies program altogether with a bill to prohibit classes from teaching beliefs that “denigrate American values.”

“Organizations that spew anti-American or race-based rhetoric have no place,” Russell Pearce, a Republican representative who sponsored the first attempt to outlaw the classes, said at a 2008 hearing. “We ought to be celebrating unity as Americans and not allowing, with taxpayer dollars, these organizations.”

Thank God Russell Pearce noticed what Leftists have been trying to hide for some time. Leftists are divisive racists. And like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, they do it all in the name of unity. As if we’re too dumb to catch on.


Wait, What? Colleges Now Offering Counseling If You Heard Free Speech?

The Colorado State University (CSU) has 17 different departments to those “affected by a free speech event” that seeking help, they said.

These indicators learn, “If you happen to (or somebody you recognize) are affected by a free speech occasion on campus, listed below are some assets…” The signal then lists 17 departments/assets that each the scholars and college can contact if they’ve been triggered by free speech on CSU’s campus.

The following are on the list of where these so-called affected students can reach out for help are the Dean of Students, Office of Equal Opportunity, Multicultural Counseling, Incidents of Bias Reporting, the Office of Equal Opportunity, the Vice President of Inclusive Excellence, and a Victim’s Assistance Hotline.

CSU is validating the self-victimization of young adults and encouraging students to fear free speech and think of it as dangerous. Instead of preparing its students for the real world, the university is teaching its students that different opinions are negative things and instead of being intelligent confronted and/or dealt with, they should instead seek counseling.

This image was initially posted to Instagram by Turning Point USA’s local chapter. The conservative student organization accused the school of intolerance with the caption, “And we haven’t even had an event yet gotta love the intolerance of @coloradostateuniversity”

Back in October, CSU sent out an email threatening to arrest the unvaccinated students if they are caught on school property without first submitting proof of vaccination or being approved for a vaccine exemption.

In a statement with Fox News, CSU spokesperson said that “CSU is committed to Free Speech as both a legal protection and a foundation of the robust debate that is core to higher education, we also recognize the power of speech to impact people deeply, and we are committed to supporting all of our students. The sign is a list of some of the many resources available to our students. It is not related to any event in particular, but rather is intended to share resources knowing that protected speech will always, and must always, be part of higher education.”




Leftist Educators Brainwashing Kids: MLK Legacy Destroyed. Is the Dream Salvageable?

“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

Those thought-provoking words are from Martin Luther King’s contribution to his 1947 Morehouse College newspaper entitled, “The Purpose of Education.” His words encapsulated what many would come to define as education’s essential functions. After all, wasn’t it the dream of every parent to see their children achieve that which they themselves could not? As a result, for many years, we have entrusted our offspring to a system of learning with teachers who could take our children beyond our own limitations.

At one time, most of us took solace in leaving our kids in the hands of a system we trusted. Yet, over the last quarter-century, the trust has wained. Today, a great many parents are not so certain the U.S. education system is “building character.”

The NY Post Reveals A Stark Classroom Reality
In a recent article by the NY Post, editorialist Paul Sperry offers this: “An elite Manhattan school is teaching white students as young as 6 that they’re born racist and should feel guilty benefiting from “white privilege”, while heaping praise and cupcakes on their black peers.

Bank Street has created a “dedicated space” in the school for “kids of color,” where they’re “embraced” by minority instructors and encouraged to “voice their feelings” and “share experiences about being a kid of color,” according to school presentation slides obtained by The Post.” Meanwhile, Sperry goes on to write, “… white kids are herded into separate classrooms and taught to raise their “awareness of the prevalence of whiteness and privilege,” challenge “notions of colorblindness (and) assumptions of ‘normal,’ ‘good,’ and ‘American’” and “understand and own European ancestry and see the tie to privilege.”

In her 2020 New York Post opinion piece, “Public schools are teaching our children to hate America,” Mary Kay Linge quotes education scholar Michael J. Petrilli: “In many schools, you are more likely to encounter the 1619 [project] or [Howard] Zinn version of history than anything positive,” he said. “We’re telling our young people that America is racist and oppressive and has only failed over the years to do right by the most vulnerable, rather than that we were founded with incredible ideals that we have sometimes failed to live up to.”

Are these articles anomalies? Should we be concerned? Is there any correlation between these “teachings” and the rise in youth violence?

When it comes to such questions, the answers are no, yes, and absolutely

According to

In 2019 – 696,620 children were arrested in the U.S.
A child or teen was arrested every 45 seconds despite a 62 percent reduction in child arrests between 2009 and 2019.
During the 2015-2016 school year alone, there were over 61,000 school arrests and 230,000 referrals to law enforcement, largely overrepresented by students with disabilities, Black students, and Indigenous students.

The prioritization of police over mental health professionals in schools often leads to the criminalization of typical adolescent behavior and fuels the school-to-prison pipeline. Today, fourteen million students attend schools with police but no counselor, nurse, psychologist, or social worker.
For the future of our children, the writing is on the wall.
Many of us as parents have allowed those teaching erroneous and revisionist history to taint the baton of academia long before even passing it on. As Kevin Jackson explains, leftists look at history in retrospect. They teach about an oppressive America, leaving out the context that created an amazing country.

Somewhere along the way, we have made the tragic segue from teaching children how to think as Dr. King suggests, to telling them what to think. This is not training our children to think for themselves as future adults. We can no longer pretend to fool ourselves. This is not teaching and strengthening our children’s minds; this is indoctrination that cripples young minds.

These are the world’s contributions to the delinquency of our minors.


Birmingham Civil Rights Institute says Alabama school system's 'disconcerting' response to complaints from a Jewish student about a teacher who asked class to perform Nazi salute shows lack of commitment to diversity

The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute has called an Alabama school system's response to complaints from a Jewish student that a teacher had classmates perform a Nazi salute 'disconcerting' and that it shows a lack of commitment to diversity.

While Mountain Brooks Schools issued a statement saying it was 'deeply apologetic for the pain' caused by a lesson that 'lacked sensitivity,' the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute questioned actions taken by the system.

In a story first reported by the Birmingham-based Southern Jewish Life, a Jewish student said he was shocked last month when a history teacher at Mountain Brook High School had classmates stand and give a stiff-armed Nazi salute during a lesson on the way symbols change. The teacher has not been identified.

The student, Ephraim Tytell, said school officials reprimanded him and told him to apologize to the teacher after he shared a video and photos of the incident on social media. Tytell said he refused.

Tytell, the only Jewish student in the 11th-grade history class, and several of his classmates refused to stand. 'I felt upset, unsure of what's going on. Just kind of shocked,' Tytell told CBS 42.

'They proceeded to tell me that I'm making Mountain Brook look bad for uploading the video and sharing it and asked me to apologize to my teacher, which I refused to,' he said.

'The day after, he made our class, and our class only, put up our phones and he moved me from sitting in the back of the class to right next to him.'

The lesson was said to be intended to show how symbols change by demonstrating that something very similar to what's now widely known as a Nazi salute was used before World War II to salute the U.S. flag.

The 'Bellamy Salute' was ditched in 1942 for the right-hand-over-the-heart gesture following the United States' entry into the second world war.

The population of Mountain Brooks is 97 percent white with a median household income of $152,355, making it the state's wealthiest suburb, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Mountain Brooks school system was previously ruled one of the top three most segregated school systems in the country, according to the nonprofit EdBuild.

On Tuesday, the school system issued a statement saying the video and photos shared online 'are not representative of the lesson' and that no one tried to teach students how to do a Nazi salute.

With blowback continuing, the system followed up with a more conciliatory statement on Thursday, that said in part: 'There are more effective ways to teach this subject without recreating painful, emotional responses to history's atrocities.'

'To improve our instructional strategies, we will continue to work with the Alabama Holocaust Education Center to advance training for our teachers surrounding Antisemitism, the Holocaust and its symbols,' the statement said.

The school system said it stands 'absolutely and unequivocally' against antisemitism.

The Birmingham Jewish Federation said the district's follow-up statement was a 'direct result' of conversations it had with leaders of the school system.

School officials 'fully recognize and understand the insensitivity of the instruction in the classroom that day and the absence of a safe space for learning for the students,' the Jewish organization said.

William Galloway, a spokesman for Mountain Brooks Schools, said it was against system policy to comment on whether the teacher remained in the classroom.

'Understanding the sensitive nature of this subject, Mountain Brook Schools has addressed the instructional strategy used with the teacher and does not condone the modeling of this salute when a picture or video could accurately convey the same message,' the school system's statement said.

Mountain Brook Listens, a group that works to promote diversity in the virtually all-white city of 22,000, issued a statement saying the incident showed the need for more resources, education and training on understanding implicit biases, building empathy and acting with more compassion.

'And our entire community, including our school system, must foster an environment where people feel safe to report behavior that they are concerned about and certainly not create an environment that cultivates any ''fear of reprisal,''' it said.

Last year, Mountain Brook's school system responded to community complaints about a diversity program produced by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) by dropping the lessons. Schools had begun using the material after anti-Semitic events, including a video of a student with swastikas drawn on his body.

Opponents claimed the lessons focused too much on race and gender and criticized the ADL as being too political.


Australian university bosses order review of perfect university entrance scoress after IB students beat iconic James Ruse school

Lenient marking has been widely used as a response to pandemic difficulties and IB markers may have gone a bit too far. But how to mark during extensive classroom absences is not an easy dilemma to solve

Powerful university chiefs have ordered a review of International Baccalaureate results amid concerns that overly generous marking gave private schools an ATAR advantage after more than one in 20 IB students in NSW achieved 99.95 last year.

The surprising results have upset some school principals, parents and many in the broader education sector, who worry that inflated IB results could undermine the fairness of the HSC. Students with top ranks gain access to the most sought-after degrees in the state, such as law and medicine.

The IB is offered in only some NSW private schools and is often part of the school’s marketing. It is not offered in public schools. Former HSC boss Tom Alegounarias said the most disadvantaged students suffered when “financial privilege” played a role in school-leaving credentials.

“There is no clearer ethical responsibility than to treat all students equally, and our universities are failing at it here,” he said.

But a spokeswoman for the IB said the organisation’s priority was to ensure students were not disadvantaged when applying for university during the pandemic.

Last year fewer than 600 NSW students sat the IB diploma, but at least 41 of them achieved the highest possible university entrance rank, compared with just 35 across the whole country the year before. Of 55,000 HSC students eligible for ATARs, only 48 achieved the same 99.95.

Twelve of the IB top achievers were from a single, non-selective girls’ school, and nine were from a non-selective boys’ school. Just five students from the highly selective James Ruse Agricultural High – the state’s top school for the past 26 years – achieved the same rank by doing the HSC.

The NSW Vice Chancellors’ Committee has asked the University Admissions Centre (UAC) – which it owns – to investigate the sharp rise in so-called perfect scores, a number of sources told the Herald on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak publicly. IB students’ ranks will not be affected.

The university chiefs are concerned about so-called grade inflation, which involves awarding higher marks than in the past for the same standard of work.

“As we saw with the HSC, changes were made to IB assessment procedures in consideration of the pandemic and this may have impacted on their scores,” the UAC’s head of marketing and engagement, Kim Paino, said. “But we will continue to monitor IB results to ensure that our conversion remains fair.”

The IB was generous in its marking of Northern Hemisphere exams last May, giving out quadruple the number of top marks as it had on average over the previous four years.

The number of top IB ranks does not affect the number of top ranks given to HSC students, but it does secure them spots in the state’s most sought-after university courses at the expense of lower-ranked HSC students.

The issue of how to equate IB marks with the ATAR has long been a point of friction, partly because of the lack of information given to Australian authorities, and partly because many in the education sector feel it gives some private school students an unfair advantage.

The IB only gives Australian authorities a mark out of 45, and not the students’ raw marks. UAC equates a 45 with an ATAR of 99.95. In contrast, UAC has access to all HSC data and analyses it significantly, adjusting according to subject difficulty before giving students a mark out of 500 and ranking them.

UAC was supposed to get more detailed data from the IB for 2022 university admissions so that it could better differentiate ranks, but the IB decided to delay that until 2023, saying students had already faced too much disruption during the pandemic.

Many of the private principals whose schools do not offer the IB are worried about this year’s results.

“It’s causing consternation,” said one, who did not want to be named. “I think there will be some schools who think, ‘if you can get 12 kids to get 99.95, why would we be doing the HSC?’ I think it’s a real threat to the reputation of the future of the HSC if that’s going to continue.”

Ms Paino said UAC was guided by fairness and accuracy when assessing ATAR equivalents for international qualifications, which include British A-levels and American SATs. “It’s not always easy because of the very fine-grained nature of university selection ranks,” she said.

“We also regularly review our conversions to ensure they are providing a fair comparison with local students.”

The chair of IB Schools Australasia, David Boardman, said the conversion from IB scores to ATAR equivalents was managed by Australian authorities and the association had no input. “The association wishes that all students are treated equitably regardless of whether they study an IB program or an alternative,” he said.

The IB Organisation has been honest about easing students through the pandemic. “The IB has taken the pandemic’s global disruption to education into account when determining grades for this year,” a spokeswoman said. “The IB’s main priority has been to ensure students are not disadvantaged by the pandemic, including their applications to university and higher education.”

How does the International Baccalaureate compare to the HSC?
There has been significant grade inflation in Britain’s A-levels since the pandemic began, with the proportion of students there getting top grades rising by almost 75 per cent. The IB is widely used in Britain, where students with both credentials compete for university entry.

Between 2017 and 2019, between 260 and 275 students achieved top scores of 45 in the May session of the IB. In 2020, that climbed to 341, and in 2021 it soared to 1187. There were fewer candidates in 2021 than in 2020.




Sunday, February 13, 2022

Woke Brooklyn College that banned campus cops from carrying guns is forced to call for help from OTHER schools during active shooter threat

Brainless Leftist twitch does not survive real life

Top administrator Michelle Anderson, formerly a Yale Law school professor who specialized in rape law, yanked the Glock-19 pistols from peace officers on the Flatbush-Midwood campus in early October last year after a school official said she was 'triggered' by the sight of a female campus security officer wearing a firearm.

'It is all somewhat ironic because this woman peace officer had been personally authorized to carry her Glock on school grounds by Anderson herself several years ago,' a source told

On February 3, the school issued an 'active shooter' threat and at least 10 peace officers from five other institutions were called to respond to the shooting while on-campus security were dispatched to collect their locked up guns from lockers.

While the threat was not acted on, the new edict raises questions of how the school can ensure the safety of students on campus in a city where gun crime has risen 30 percent year-on-year, according to the latest NYPD crime statistics released on Wednesday.

In Brooklyn south alone, where the college is located, gun crimes have risen a staggering 111.1 percent year-on-year.

On February 3, Brooklyn College issued an 'active shooter' threat and at least 10 peace officers from four other institutions were called to respond to the shooting while on-campus security were dispatched to collect their locked up guns from lockers

At least nine institutions of the 25 under CUNY control continue to allow armed patrol guards, including City College of New York in Manhattan, Bronx Community College, Kingsborough Community College and Staten Island College.

Earlier this month, two unarmed campus cops at Virginia's private Bridgewater College were shot dead when a former track star, 27, opened fire on them.

At least nine institutions of the 25 under CUNY control continue to allow armed patrol guards, they include:

- City College of New York, Manhattan

- Bronx Community College

- Kingsborough Community College, Brooklyn

- Lehman College, The Bronx

- Hostos Community College, The Bronx

- Guttman Community College, Manhattan

- Medgar Evers College, Brooklyn

- Queensborough Community College, Queens

- Staten Island College

John Painter, 55, and J.J. Jefferson, 48, were gunned down after confronting a suspicious man stalking near Memorial Hall on the campus of the small college in the Shenandoah Valley at 1:20 p.m.

The suspected shooter was identified as Alexander Wyatt Campbell, 27, who fled the scene before being hunted down at a nearby waterway about 40 minutes later. Multiple firearms allegedly belonging to Campbell were recovered, with weapons found both on and off campus, officials said.

Shortly after the October 'no gun' policy at Brooklyn College was instituted, Anderson participated in a Zoom meeting with campus administrators, faculty and students with the goal of revamping campus safety by eliminating police involvement and without armed security .

'She is all about wokeness,' a CUNY campus police supervisor, who asked not to be named for fear of retribution, said.

Shortly after Anderson's disarming edict was handed down, on October 21, there was a shooting just off campus in which four people were wounded.

'Please be cautious when coming to or leaving the Campus,' a text alert to students and staff said.

Although the shooting was off campus, the warning underscored the hazards of the urban campus, especially in light of the city's rising crime rate.

The union officials who represent the campus cops acknowledged that there was a 'departure' in status for their members, but offered a guarded response.

'Although it is the prerogative of the college president not to utilize the full measure of protocols within the campus security system set up by CUNY, all is well until something bad happens,' Gregory Floyd, president of Local 237 of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, said.

'Then, the responsibility of that decision also falls on the president — and CUNY as well, for allowing such a departure.'

Each armed peace officer earns about $50,000 annually and has undergone 50 hours of firearms training, the source said.

No Brooklyn College students were hurt in the off-campus shooting, but other colleges have not been so lucky when it comes to violent crime.

On December 11, 2019, Barnard College student, Tessa Majors, 18, died after she was fatally stabbed by three teenagers during an armed robbery in nearby Morningside Park.

More recently, in early December 2021, a Columbia University graduate student, Davide Giri, 30, a Ph.D. candidate in computer science who was attending the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, was stabbed to death about two blocks from his apartment building, not far from the college's Upper Manhattan campus.

And this year marks the 15th anniversary of a mass shooting on the campus of Virginia Tech in which 32 students were gunned down by one of their classmates.

About 600 peace officers are employed by CUNY throughout the entire university system, but only about 100 are authorized to carry guns while patrolling those schools that permit an armed security presence. Most are in uniform, although a small number of armed campus cops do occasionally patrol in plainclothes.

Despite Floyd's statement and claims by multiple sources who spoke to, a spokeswoman for Brooklyn College insisted that armed CUNY peace officer have never been allowed to patrol the campus while armed, but keep their firearms locked in a campus security office.

'The safety of the students, staff, and faculty in our campus community is of the utmost priority at Brooklyn College and our excellent public safety team ensures this every day.

'Public safety officers have never been permitted to carry a weapon while on campus patrol. Weapons are secured and brought out in emergency situations. Authorized administrators have always kept firearms on their person while in their secured offices, but they do not patrol the campus.'

One veteran CUNY security official sharply disputed the accuracy of the Brooklyn College spokesman's statement.

'It's an absolute lie that authorized Brooklyn College peace officers were previously not allowed to patrol while armed,' the official said.

Joseph Giacalone, a retired NYPD sergeant and author who is an adjunct professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, was flabbergasted by the decision to strip guns from trained law enforcement personnel for no discernible reason tied to campus security objectives.

He suggested that Anderson, Brooklyn College's president — who enjoys a chauffeured vehicle driven by a campus security peace officer, as do all senior-level CUNY executives — was advocating an indefensible policy that was not rooted in public safety.

'Once again, we see those with school-owned vehicles and private chauffeurs making security decisions for the rest of us.

'If Brooklyn College thinks their students will be safer with no cops around, go ahead. God forbid something happens. I wouldn't want to be on the wrong end of that lawsuit,' he noted.

Giacalone added that 'criminals are opportunists and if they know cops are not welcome on campus, they will take advantage of it. It's only a matter of time. One would think that after two students [from Columbia and Barnard] have been murdered . . . you would make your campus more secure, not less.'

Forcing campus cops to rush for their guns during an emergency — or responding while unarmed — can pose unanticipated dangers, he insisted.

'The confusion this can cause during an emergency or police response is off the charts,' said.

On October 7, less than a week after the gun policy change, Anderson participated in a Zoom meeting 'to develop a new CUNY-wide public safety plan' attended by approximately a dozen CUNY officials and some CUNY students.

'Brooklyn College has stated that the impetus for a new strategic plan [on campus security] are the Black Lives Matter and George Floyd movements,' the source quoted Anderson saying.

'These two experiences must be incorporated into any new operational plan and any new rebranding efforts of CUNY public safety,' Anderson added, according to the source.

She sought to do so without police involvement.

'Brooklyn College has recommended that the relationship with the NYPD and CUNY public safety be eliminated and 'policing' be removed from the CUNY public safety mission, its practices and tactics,' Anderson stated, according to the source.

The college spokeswoman denied that there was any friction between cops and the college.

'Brooklyn College values its relationship with the NYPD and will continue to work closely with it to keep our campus community safe,' she said.

The policy change, however, seems to be a continuation of tensions between law enforcement and the administrators at the college.

In November 2017, the New York Post reported how Brooklyn College officials barred NYPD cops from walking on the campus while armed so they could use the bathroom — incidents that purportedly 'triggered' some nervous students who felt threatened by the prospect of seeing cops with guns in their midst.

Donald Wenz, a retired NYPD captain who currently serves as Brooklyn College's director of public safety, told the student newspaper, The Excelsior, that he was trying to keep New York's Finest out of sight.

Police were only allowed to use a dirty bathroom in the isolated West End Building that had a broken toilet with a stained seat and no soap or paper towels, the Post reported.

Joseph Tirella, spokesman for CUNY, did not respond to a request for comment.

Wenz declined to comment. Hector Batista, CUNY's CEO and André Brown, the university's director of public safety — both of whom attended the recent Zoom meeting in which Anderson spoke — did not return phone calls.

Giacalone warned that the Brooklyn College president may be playing with fire.

'Any policy that limits their certified armed personnel from carrying their weapons while on the campus is only inviting trouble. When mass shootings are unfortunately common in and around educational facilities, one would think that this plan is short-sighted. Even more so, have there been complaints of misconduct or unlawful use of weapons by the staff? If not, I need to ask, why this now?' he said.


California Schools Can Change Students‘ Gender Categories Without Parent Consent

Dov Fischer

A Catholic mom in Northern California enrolled her daughter in a public charter school. During her initial Zoom classes, the girl, an incoming freshman who had not yet stepped foot in the school due to COVID-19, was asked her name and “preferred pronouns.”

She chose a male name and male pronouns. The school then routinely used this information without informing her parents, and then began to socially transition the child—the first in a series of steps culminating in a so-called “sex change.”

It’s a measure of the peril of our culture that these parents have asked that I protect their anonymity. They have good reason to fear: soon after they voiced their anger with school officials, Child Protective Services showed up at their doorstep.

It’s bad enough that some in government aspire to divide us by race, religion, or languages. But using our schools and law enforcement to divide our families? Deliberately separating parents from their own children in order to indoctrinate our children with radical gender ideas—starting in preschool?

This is wrong. Had COVID-19 not forced so many classes into our homes via Zoom, few of us would have become aware of it.

And that’s just the tip of the proverbial non-binary iceberg. The gender category “non-binary” now appears on all student information forms. Few parents, reared in a prior generation, realize that “non-binary” means “unlimited gender choices.” The California Department of Education defines “non-binary” as anything beyond the historic “male-female” binary understanding of gender—new terms for a new age, including “transgender,” “non-gender,” “intersex,” “agender,” “gender-queer,” “gender fluid,” “Two Spirit, bigender,” “pangender,” “gender nonconforming,” or “gender variant.” Really.

The California Department of Education says these genders are ever expansive, ever evolving and ever changing, and that children can self-certify or choose their own gender. The Center of Disease Control and Prevention defines “gender nonbinary” as “gender creative,” meaning children can create or make-up their own gender, and these non-conforming imaginary genders are marginalized minorities.

Troy Flint, the chief information officer from the California School Boards Association, says “non-binary” means “multiple options.” These teachings not only denigrate our respective faiths but also defy common sense.

The California Teachers Association adopted a policy in January 2020 stating students should be able to access hormone therapy without parent consent, for the sake of “equity.” This is already a reality for foster youth starting at age 12, thanks to Assembly Bill 2119. Also, according to Assembly Bill 1184, minors can bill their parents’ insurance without their parents’ consent for gender-affirming care, which includes hormone therapy or “sex-change” operations.

Today’s accommodations could consign a child to lifelong ramifications—powerful hormone treatments, a lifetime of meds, inability to bear offspring, horrific and grotesque surgeries that irreversibly remove core body parts.

I am an Orthodox Jew. Although my viewpoint on this matter may be inconsistent with the zeitgeist, it is normative among more than 1,500 American Orthodox rabbis with whom I affiliate in organizations like the Coalition for Jewish Values, the Rabbinical Alliance of America (Igud HaRabbanim), and other mainstream Orthodox Jewish bodies.

We rabbis speak for congregants, lead synagogues, teach at yeshiva elementary schools, high schools, and advanced-degree programs. Our voices rarely are heard by Americans because media focus elsewhere.

We stand boldly and proudly alongside Americans of other faiths who share family values similar to ours. Devout Catholics, Protestants of varying denominations, faithful Muslims, Hindus, and others. We work together in the Statewide Interfaith Coalition (, a network of many races, ethnicities, religions, and skin colors to oppose extremist gender ideologies infiltrating pre-K-12 education. Together, we oppose the erosion of parental rights, as well as the deceptions perpetuated through public education today.

A colleague, a Southern California imam, has asked, “When will we collectively say enough is enough?” It’s not hard to imagine that we’re on the road to becoming a society in which the state owns children. But not yet.

In America, parents give birth, feed, nourish, house, clothe, and embrace their children. We are not compelled to inculcate them in a state religion. We decide whether they trick-or-treat on Halloween or deliver mishlo’ach manot on Purim—or both. We monitor and guide their social media. We help them choose friends. We teach them to obey the law.

Here in the state of California, school personnel or mental health workers partnering with schools, now have authority—solely based on a child’s request, regardless of age—to change a child’s gender category in the California Data System without parental knowledge or consent. This betrays parental trust no matter religious or non-religious affiliation.

Sacramento and the local school boards must leave parents to mentor their children on gender matters. If they don’t, they will begin to exit public schools in great numbers.


Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Bill Hits Target: Gender Ideology Harms Kids

Children are being targeted with sexual content—not just in social media, but also in school curriculums. As with other recent controversies, however, leaders in Florida are fighting back.

Lawmakers in the Sunshine State have introduced a new bill, Parental Rights in Education. If the name doesn’t ring a bell, that may be because big media have mislabeled it as the “Don’t Say Gay” Bill.

The bill would not ban the word “gay.” Rather, it would protect children from teachers and other school officials who seek to sexualize and bombard them with gender ideology.

In particular, it would require schools to be transparent with and get permission from parents for any health services students receive. It would also prohibit elementary school teachers from pushing classroom discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Liberal activists are claiming that the parental rights bill would harm kids. Nonsense. It would protect young kids from what is, in effect, sexual grooming—whether in the classroom or the nurse’s office.

The fact that this has become a partisan issue is a sign of how bizarre our culture and politics have become.

In recent years, sexually explicit and age-inappropriate material have flooded America’s classrooms. For example, last year in Washington state, a first-grade teacher read students “I Am Jazz”—an infamous children’s book that promotes transgenderism.

Sexually Explicit Content Harms Kids

Anyone with common sense knows that we should protect young children from sexual content. Scientific evidence confirms that wisdom.

We know that early exposure to sexual content can harm young students. It has been linked to poor “mental health, life satisfaction, sexual behavior and attitudes, and pornography-viewing patterns in adulthood.”

Decent schools used to know that kids need visual and intellectual space to flourish and mature into healthy, balanced adults. Unfortunately, times have changed. Schools are now often a pipeline for sexualizing kids as young as kindergarten.

The fact that activist-educators do this in the name of “compassion” or “gender equity” doesn’t change what’s really happening.

Bad Medicine

What’s more, the fashionable gender ideology peddled by many schools is contrary to the best medical evidence.

According to the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 88% to 98% of those struggling with gender dysphoria will reconcile with their biological sex after going through puberty.

Trendy gender interventions can prevent this healing and set children of a lifelong path of surgeries, hormone treatments, costly and painful medical treatment, and physical illness.

That’s the problem with all three stages of the transition trifecta—puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgery.

But even prior social transition can lead to harm. If a girl spends her teen years presenting and imagining herself as a boy, she will be more likely to take the next steps on the path to gender “transition.”

She won’t get those years back, even if she changes her mind. She will be out of sync with her peers.

Then there’s the physical harm.

Puberty blockers have been shown to reduce bone density, which can lead to lifelong problems. Cross-sex hormones can sterilize those who receive them. And removing sex organs is just sterilization—full stop.

Parents have the most interest and incentive to weigh the options, the risks, and the irreversible, life-altering consequences of these methods.

A healthy culture recognizes that parents—not teachers and school nurses—have the chief responsibility for helping their children who struggle with their sexed bodies.


Of course, there’s honest debate about what is age-appropriate and about what is the best treatment for those with gender dysphoria. So, in short, who should decide: teachers, administrators, or parents?

The Florida bill sides with parents—as it should. That’s why much of it is about transparency for parents. Parents can then decide when, if, and how their kids will be exposed to sexually explicit content and referred for therapy and medical treatment.

In a normal world, a law mandating transparency wouldn’t be needed.

Teachers would share the values and priorities of the parents in their communities. Today, however, many public schools treat parents as hostile and reactionary impediments to gender indoctrination.

Those schools aid and abet in the “social transition” of kids who request it—using and enforcing “preferred pronouns” and the like—while hiding it from parents. Parents in Wisconsin and Florida are currently suing their school districts for doing just that.

Such deception strikes at the natural bond between parents and their children. Moms and dads, not teachers and principals, know their children best.

Moms and dad have the right and responsibility to raise their children. They may delegate some of the details to schools, but that does not mean they give up their prerogatives.

The new Florida bill recognizes the well-being of children and the right of their parents to raise and teach them. Other states should ignore the liberal media trolls and follow Florida’s lead.