- The Rigid Old Normal - May 26, 2020
- Harvard’s Homeschool Haters - April 28, 2020
- Do Black and Hispanic Lives Really Matter to Progressives? - April 22, 2020
It is officially “back to school” season and, thusly, a time to remind parents that they must be very aware of what their kids are learning in school. Though I have written about this subject many times, it cannot be stressed enough that all too often it is far more than just the ABCs that little Johnny and Janey are being taught.
For one, the teachers unions are as keen as ever to promote their far left agenda. While they don’t create specific curricula for public schools, they take an active role in pushing for new teaching requirements, which in turn have an effect on what their members teach. Many teachers I have known follow the National Education Association dictum: “Education is Political: Neutrality in the Classroom Shortchanges Students.” American Federation of Teachers’ president Randi Weingarten, who loathes President Trump, wants students to “analyze problems in their communities, figure out potential solutions and advocate for change.” In other words, students should work to dump Trump and move the country leftward. At the same time, the United Teachers of Los Angeles is pushing its socialist-inspired “New Deal for Public Schools.”
In the Golden State, the California Teachers Association has been instrumental in developing a radical sex agenda – which starts in kindergarten – when kids are told they may have a gender identity that is different from their sex “assigned at birth.” But it gets worse, much worse. A new video produced by a conservative watchdog group in Murrieta features an ACLU attorney instructing California public school teachers about “how they can help students to receive abortions or gender counseling during school hours without revealing it to their parents.” In fact, schools cannot share this information, and it applies to children of any age.
Then there is the new proposed ethnic studies curriculum in California. The first draft of this vile pile of propaganda maintained that capitalism is akin to racism and other forms of oppression. At the same time, the document, which included such Orwellian terms such as cisheteropatriarchy, hxrstory and accompliceship, encouraged teachers to venerate such solid citizens as cop-killers Mumia Abu-Jamal and Assata Shakur. Prominent Marxists Angela Davis and Frantz Fanon were also considered “significant” figures. During the “comments” period, which ended August 15th, the pubic and various interest groups had a chance to weigh in. Most notably, Jewish groups took exception to the document’s pro-BDS position and other “blatant bias against Israel.” The California Legislative Jewish Caucus, a group of Democrats, said, “…we cannot support a curriculum that erases the American Jewish experience, fails to discuss anti-Semitism, reinforces negative stereotypes about Jews, singles out Israel for criticism and would institutionalize the teaching of anti-Semitic stereotypes in our public schools.”
And after a barrage of other naysayers weighed in, the California State Board of Education has killed the curriculum – for now – saying that it “falls short and needs to be substantially redesigned.” The draft did not meet the goals to be “accurate, free of bias, appropriate for all learners in our diverse state, and align with Governor Newsom’s vision of a California for all,” said board members. Oh, but it’ll be back, probably a somewhat kinder and gentler version, but one I am guessing will still be offensive to many. The board has until March 31,2020 to make a final decision so stay tuned.
The encouraging take-away from the ethnic studies curriculum mess is that pressure from right-minded people matters. In fact, if you are upset with any of our many disturbing educational trends, there are ways to fight back. Regarding California’s horribly inappropriate sexual agenda, there is Informed Parents of California– a group of 34,700 (and counting) concerned mothers and fathers who are mad as hell and aren’t going to take it anymore. California Parents Involved in Education (CAPIE) is a smaller but important Facebook group that speaks truth to power.
In central California, the parent-led Fair Education Santa Barbara is suing the school district over its hiring of the non-profit Just Communities Central Coast, which supplied the district with an “implicit bias” curriculum. Essentially, kids are taught that that whites (especially males of the Christian persuasion) are oppressors, the wealthy oppress the poor, straights oppress gays, yada, yada, yada.
In a 2013 essay for Frontpage Mag, Bruce Thornton, a Cal State college professor and Hoover Institution Fellow wrote, ’The Jesuit educational maxim was, ‘Give me a child until he is seven and I will give you the man.’ Today’s progressives get children until they are 18 and sometimes 21. That kind of influence is hard to match.”
Thornton nails it. The time has long passed where a parent can send their little one off to public school and blindly assume they are learning about readin’ writin’, and ‘rithmetic. All too often, something much darker is happening, and you may end up not recognizing the angry, dogmatic and sexually confused kid who emerges.
[Originally Published at the California Policy Center]