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FMJRA 3/13/2010 – The Texas School Board Massacre

March 14, 2010

Dustbury hit on the Itawamba County Gay Prom Problem

Curses! Foiled Again! jumped in on the employment ID bill that Schumer and some other idiot are proposing.

The Other McCain linked Clint and Denise discussing the 10th amendment and gun control.

-elsewhere-

Obama Calls for Sweeping Overhaul in Education Law

The administration would replace the law’s pass-fail school grading system with one that would measure individual students’ academic growth and judge schools based not on test scores alone but also on indicators like pupil attendance, graduation rates and learning climate. And while the proposal calls for more vigorous interventions in failing schools, it would also reward top performers and lessen federal interference in tens of thousands of reasonably well-run schools in the middle.

In addition, President Obama would replace the law’s requirement that every American child reach proficiency in reading and math, which administration officials have called utopian, with a new national target that could prove equally elusive: that all students should graduate from high school prepared for college and a career.

I’m not sure how you are prepared for college or a career without being proficient in Math and Reading unless it is a career selling hot dogs and biting the heads off chickens at amusement parks and even there you have to be able to make change. To me this just seems like an out for the teachers unions. “Oh we know none of our students can read, write or balance a checkbook, but look we have perfect attendance, and brand new computers”

(h/t)

Related – Texas Conservatives Win Curriculum Change

AUSTIN, Tex. — After three days of turbulent meetings, the Texas Board of Education on Friday approved a social studies curriculum that will put a conservative stamp on history and economics textbooks, stressing the superiority of American capitalism, questioning the Founding Fathers’ commitment to a purely secular government and presenting Republican political philosophies in a more positive light.

This is what the fighting has been about? OMG, I can’t believe that conservatives want to have fair treatment of issues they consider important. If you have been following this issue you would think that the school board had gone apeshit and just started making stuff up. I have been guilty of that myself, but the examples in the NY Times article actually don’t seem that far off base-

The conservative members maintain that they are trying to correct what they see as a liberal bias among the teachers who proposed the curriculum. To that end, they made dozens of minor changes aimed at calling into question, among other things, concepts like the separation of church and state and the secular nature of the American Revolution.

“I reject the notion by the left of a constitutional separation of church and state,” said David Bradley, a conservative from Beaumont who works in real estate. “I have $1,000 for the charity of your choice if you can find it in the Constitution.”

They also included a plank to ensure that students learn about “the conservative resurgence of the 1980s and 1990s, including Phyllis Schlafly, the Contract With America, the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority and the National Rifle Association.”

Dr. McLeroy, a dentist by training, pushed through a change to the teaching of the civil rights movement to ensure that students study the violent philosophy of the Black Panthers in addition to the nonviolent approach of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He also made sure that textbooks would mention the votes in Congress on civil rights legislation, which Republicans supported.

“Republicans need a little credit for that,” he said. “I think it’s going to surprise some students.”

(…)

In economics, the revisions add Milton Friedman and Friedrich von Hayek, two champions of free-market economic theory, among the usual list of economists to be studied, like Adam Smith, Karl Marx and John Maynard Keynes. They also replaced the word “capitalism” throughout their texts with the “free-enterprise system.”

I do have problems with the alleged under representation of Hispanic contributions, if that is true then hopefully it will be corrected during the comment period. I also have problems with the removal of Thomas Jefferson from the discussion of the enlightenment. Including Thomas Aquinas and John Calvin however isn’t as far fetched as it first appears –

Calvin’s thought exerted considerable influence over major religious figures and entire religious movements, such as Puritanism, and some political historians have argued that his ideas have contributed to the rise of capitalism, individualism, and representative democracy in the West.

(…)

Calvin is discussed in Max Weber’s classic work The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism in which he argues that Calvin’s teachings provided ideological impetus for the development of capitalism.[94] John Stuart Mill saw Calvin’s belief in the value of restraining one’s self-will as damaging to the development of the individual, though.[95] Some political historians, such as George Bancroft, have recognised his contributions to the development of representative democracy in general and the American system of government in particular.[96]

(source)

Saint Thomas Aquinas, O.P. (also Thomas of Aquin or Aquino; ca. 1225 – 7 March 1274) was an Italian priest of the Roman Catholic Church in the Dominican Order, and an immensely influential philosopher and theologian in the tradition of scholasticism, known as Doctor Angelicus and Doctor Communis. He is frequently referred to as Thomas because “Aquinas” refers to his residence rather than his surname. He was the foremost classical proponent of natural theology, and the father of the Thomistic school of philosophy and theology. His influence on Western thought is considerable, and much of modern philosophy was conceived as a reaction against, or as an agreement with, his ideas, particularly in the areas of ethics, natural law and political theory.

(source)

So certainly mentioning of Calvin and Aquinas as influences on the enlightenment would be appropriate.

Below are tow examples of the rewritten standards from the NY Times website –

They don’t seem that bad to me.

Little Miss Attila skips the whole mess with this 3 minute history of everything

-More on Education-

NC teacher decides it’s appropriate to call a student a “Loser” on a homework assignment. Say’s it’s his way of joking with the kids. Maybe one of the parents should knock out all his teeth as his way of joking with teachers.

Entire Graduating Class of Urban Prep Charter Academy Accepted to College – Only 4 Percent of Class Read at Grade Level When School Was Founded. That’s amazing. We need more successes like this.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. xbradtc permalink
    March 14, 2010 5:07 pm

    TJ was just an OWG who owned slaves.

    Don’t you know that? They taught me that in school.

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