School Curricula Destroying US Productivity
Written By: Karen Schroeder | Posted: Monday, December 31st, 2012
Advocates for Academic Freedom
President Obama, an avid supporter of social justice theories, demeaned America's historical focus on rugged individualism and healthy skepticism of too much government. He said, "It fits well on a bumper sticker. Here's the problem: It doesn't work. It's never worked." This dishonesty is an attempt to motivate Americans to replace their limited government with big government. The President's words demonstrate the deleterious effects that Common Core State Standards (CCSS), CSCOPE, and social justice curricula are having on American values.
Abandonment of support for individualism and consistent standards by educational institutions has failed America. This abandonment has created the chaos the President wrongly blames on our republic, free markets, and capitalism. The President is wrong. Educational experts are wrong. American citizens who accept the weakening of America's sovereignty and economic security are also wrong.
Social justice proponents explain that a specific goal of social justice curricula is to encourage students and educators to expose and eradicate the power structures of the status quo. In other words, destroy America's productivity.
The educational tools for this destruction are CCSS, CSCOPE, educators who advocate using the classroom to encourage students to turn against their government, and school boards that tie the hands of educators, making it impossible for them to set high standards for students.
CCSS are an integral part of Race to the Top. According to Ze'ev Wurman, an Electrical Engineer and Chief Software Architect for MonlithIC3D who has served on an educational board for the United States and China, states that Common Core Standards "fail to achieve their stated goal of improving US K-12 mathematics achievement." Dr. Sandra Stotsky has expressed concerns about English Language Arts Standards which include misleading definitions, empty skill sets, and efforts to "weaken the base of literary and cultural knowledge". Their comments are detailed in Controlling Education from the Top: Why Common Core is Bad for America produced by A Pioneer Institute and American Principles Project White Paper.
Many Texan students are being exposed to CSCOPE, a private program operating under the Texas Education Service Center Curriculum Collaborative which includes lessons that demoralize many students, undermine their ancestry, and discourage productivity. Some topics include "Allah is the Almighty God." Another lesson claims that the Boston Tea Party of 1773 was a terrorist attack comparable to that of 9/11. Geography curriculum slants facts to encourage students to accept globalization over national sovereignty. Teachers are required to sign a gag order about the curricula. Because CSCOPE is a private program, it avoids oversight requirements.
Educators across America are emboldened to ignore the academic freedom of conservative students and to impose their political and social agendas upon students. Unfortunately, too many of these educators want to use your children to weaken the American economic and political system thereby destroying America from within.
An anti-testing group of educators and parents held a "Change the Stakes" event in New York City. Bill Ayers, terrorist and educator, attended and explained that if teachers want change to come, they must utilize their access to students. He stated that "we have absolute access to the community, the school, the neighborhood, the street, the classroom, the workplace, the shop, the farm-why are we ignoring that" and that "our job is movement building".
Lowering standards for student productivity is part of the plan. According to the November 27, 2011, issue of the Star Tribune, the St. Paul School District will be setting stricter goals for administrators of schools who fail to lower their rate of student suspensions. School Board members requested educators to evaluate their rules and determine which ones call for suspensions and which call for lesser punishments. Instead of analyzing whether behavioral standards are reasonable and necessary for schools and students to succeed academically, the school board looked for reasons to excuse student behaviors.
A growing number of students believe that education has no value because social justice curriculum has stripped education of much of its value. Their attitude and its relationship to suspensions were not discussed. There was no discussion about the obligation of schools to teach behavioral standards that are necessary for personal success. A district assistant administrator stated, "We're no longer going to assume that students know how to behave in school."
There was no attempt to address an approach that would help students and parents understand and respect behaviors, moral codes, or traditional American values that are necessary to create a successful school environment. Instead, school board members focused on the attitudes of educators and decided that they may be responding inappropriately to neighborhood customs.
An expressed concern was that a "defensive attitude that's standard in a child's home or neighborhood may be interpreted as demeaning behavior at school." Under social justice curricula, the possibility that neighborhood standards might be the stumbling block to academic achievement is not considered.
Possible oppression within the educational system is determined by social justice advocates to be at fault. To help eradicate this supposed oppression, St. Paul School District educators will now be going through "cultural proficiency" training to learn how to evaluate their own stereotypes and reflect on their treatment of people.
Teachers are at fault? That premise is the product of social justice curricula. If a student is not successful, find a reason within the system and depend upon the government for solutions. Underachievers are encouraged to blame their failures on the successful. According to progressives, the successful should transfer a sufficient portion of their success to the unsuccessful to achieve perceived success for all.
A once exceptional educational system is being rendered ineffective by social justice curricula. Social justice policies seek to destroy those standards proven successful and replace them with "anything goes". When anything goes, chaos and individual failures are inevitable. Big government replaces the individual to fill the productivity gap.
Does this tolerance for the intolerable bring success to students or to our political or economic systems? When rules that encourage success are undermined, chaos ensues and productivity is destroyed.
Karen Schroeder is the President of Advocates for Academic Freedom and an education consultant for political candidates. She has thirty-six years of teaching in public schools and Master Degrees in Special Education and Learning Disabilities.