Bad  Ideas  in  Public  Education

Occasionally there are reports on the internet news services about astonishingly bad ideas which have been put into practice in public schools.  Somehow these atrocious practices don't get a lot of coverage in the mainstream news media; at least not with any negative connotations.

In the articles below, notice how many of these bad ideas originate on the west coast.

Quick jump to the Ritalin Section below.

Everything related to Common Core (federalized curriculum) has been move to this page.



American University blocks whites from cafe designated as 'sanctuary' for nonwhites.  After black student activists issued a demand list to American University in response to the racist-banana incident two weeks ago, the administration agreed to three demands.  One of them is a ban on whites using a new "student lounge" for the rest of the spring semester.  The Bridge Cafe only opened six weeks ago, and it won't be serving coffee and food until the fall semester, The Eagle reported April 3.

Dem. Assemblyman Pushes Bill to Guarantee Teachers Cannot Shoot Back if Attackers Strike.  California Assemblyman Kevin McCarty (D-7) is pushing legislation to take away school administrators' power to allow teachers with a Carry Concealed Weapon license to be armed in classrooms for self-defense.  McCarty's bill — AB 424 — was introduced months ago and is snaking its way through the legislative process.

California Schools Approve New Policy For Students: 'It's Okay To Break The Law, Police Are Evil'.  The Los Angeles School Board is taking modern day liberalism to a whole new level.  They have created a mantra to not only ignore Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents also known as ICE, but to also ACTIVELY do their best to take illegal actions against them if they were to see ICE ever to set foot on their school grounds.  It was a unanimous approval for a set of policies that the board members said would provide families with a much higher level of protection when it came to federal immigration raids.  Among this set of new policies it was also stated that no immigration officer will be given any permission to be on campus without first getting clearance from the superintendent of schools.  Until that happens they will be denied access to school property EVEN if they arrive with a legally valid subpoena.

Manhattan school trashes all its textbooks.  In a scene out of "Fahrenheit 451," administrators at Life Sciences Secondary School have ordered all textbooks rounded up and removed — calling them "antiquated," sources say.  Principal Kim Swanson and Assistant Principal Derek Premo, who launched the ban, "really frown upon the use of books," an insider told The [New York] Post.  "They just took books that teachers have been using and not replaced anything."

Is This The Most Racist High School Assignment Ever?  A taxpayer-funded high school in North Carolina has come under criticism from local parents because a history teacher gave students a blatantly racist assignment involving a bomb shelter and an impending nuclear war. [...] The assignment — called "Bomb Shelter Activity" — forces students to use skin color and ethnic background to choose four strangers who will be allowed enter a bomb shelter prior to a nuclear attack.

LGBTQ, transgender issues should be taught in nursery school, UK teachers' union says.  A British teachers' union wants to teach children as young as 2 years old about transgender and LGBTQ issues, but conservatives and faith-based organizations see such a move as an infringement on parental rights.  The National Union of Teachers (NUT) called on members this week at their annual conference in Wales to promote LGBTQ issues to children — beginning in nursery school.  NUT also urged ministers to make proposed sex and relationship education "inclusive" of lesbian, gay, and bisexual issues.

Repudiating the Obama Vision for Higher Education.  In 2012, there was a White House forum to discuss the remaking of our institutions of higher learning.  The forum was based on a 136 page volume A Crucible Moment:  College Learning and Democracy's Future by The National Task Force on Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement.  The National Task Force was composed of 11 individuals.  The writers or supervisors of the writing were these eleven individuals, so we shall never know who is responsible for which section of the report.  The writing of books by committee is another sign to this writer of the dilution of individual responsibility as well as individual rights.  It is a collective manuscript.  And if you ask teachers in our schools, they will tell you that increasingly textbooks are "written" by a large committee of scholars.  This report reflects this trend.  However, chief spokesman for this report at the 2012 White House Forum was Carol G. Schneider, then President of the American Association of College and University Professors.  This report should send a chill up the spines of every citizen in the United States.  Why?  It represented nothing less than an attempt to turn institutions of learning away from preparing students for careers and professional employment and away from the unbiased search for truth, which presumably is a scientific and philosophical goal in our colleges.  According to the vision of this report, institutions of higher education should be engaged in community development and promoting engagement.  It is a "social justice" model, a progressive model.  Universities should fill in gaps where existing institutions have failed communities.

Tulsa Teen Comes Home From School With Contraceptive Implant.  In a shocking case coming out of Tulsa, Oklahoma, a mother who consented to what she was told was a "field trip" discovered that her 16-year-old daughter had been taken — by representatives of a local clinic and with the consent of school officials — to receive the Norplant contraceptive implant.  The girl — whose name is being withheld because she is a minor — is a student at Langston Hughes Academy, an arts and technology charter school located in North Tulsa.  Her mother, Miracle Foster, told FOX23 that she was blindsided when her daughter came home with the implant.  "Had I known that this field trip was to get that done, I would not have allowed her to go," Foster said, adding, "I just feel like my rights as a parent were violated."

What Does It Take to Declare a School 'Unsafe'?  [Montgomery County, Maryland] citizens have since learned that an illegal immigrant can be 18 years old, enroll in the public schools, undergo no background check, and because they have no verifiable high school credits, automatically be enrolled as a freshman, putting them in the same classes as 14 and 15-year-olds.  Under the law, the school cannot ask about the student's immigration status; the school system chooses to not perform background checks on incoming students.  In this light, the shock is not that this happened, the shock is that this hasn't happened until now.

A Plan to Reform Our Failing Universities.  To begin with, Title IX should be abolished a.s.a.p.  Originally intended to prevent sexual and racial discrimination — a well-intentioned but ill-conceived bipartisan measure signed into law in 1972 — Title IX has been corrupted beyond recognition, trampling due process in sexual harassment cases, feeding the campus rape panic, curtailing free speech rights in an effort to avoid "offense," diluting the curriculum via "trigger warnings" and "microaggression" claims, establishing a culture of grievance, allowing talks and lectures by conservative speakers to be cancelled or disrupted, gutting men's sports programs, and surrendering to the most absurd and untenable student demands.  This abomination was promoted under the rubric of "equality" in a world where natural and imprescriptible inequalities abound in both the physical and intellectual domains.  The casualties are merit and individuality.

High School Tries Shaming Boy, Demanding He 'Tolerate' Undressing with Girls to 'Make it Natural'.  A teenage boy and his parents have filed a lawsuit against a Pennsylvania high school saying that administrators tried to shame the boy for being "intolerant" and demanded that he undress with girls in the school locker room to "make it seem natural."  The lawsuit, filed by Alliance Defending Freedom and Independence Law Center (ILC), is alleging that the Boyertown Area School District in Boyertown, Pennsylvania, sexually harassed the plaintiff, CBS News reported.  "No school should rob any student of this legally protected personal privacy," said ILC attorney Randall Wenger.  "We trust that our children won't be forced into emotionally vulnerable situations like this when they are in the care of our schools because it's a school's duty to protect and respect the bodily privacy and dignity of all students."  "My client is standing up not only for himself but for others who feel bullied," Wenger added.

How to Short-Circuit a Child's Thinking:  Radical education reformers have made a point of removing context from children's education, and to squash their natural curiosity, undermining their capacity to think.  They have done this in five ways:  1) by withholding the basic tools and codes of learning, such as suppressing phonics for reading, as well as clarity in standard arithmetic; 2) by withholding the content knowledge necessary to connect dots in understanding history and civics; 3) by withholding and demeaning literature that reveals universal human experiences and shared understanding, such as the classics and Shakespeare; 4) by de-stabilizing a child's sense of self and identity.  This is a natural byproduct of de-sexing every child, which happens through mandates to teach kids about transgenderism; and 5) by promoting relational aggression against any child or parent who might resist this totalitarian program.  Radical education reform encourages schools and communities to single out those who disagree with this coercive program as misfits, bigots, or religious nuts.  All of the above would subvert anybody's ability to think clearly.

How to Short-Circuit a Child's Thinking.  Radical education reformers have made a point of removing context from children's education, and to squash their natural curiosity, undermining their capacity to think.  They have done this in five ways:  1) by withholding the basic tools and codes of learning, such as suppressing phonics for reading, as well as clarity in standard arithmetic; 2) by withholding the content knowledge necessary to connect dots in understanding history and civics; 3) by withholding and demeaning literature that reveals universal human experiences and shared understanding, such as the classics and Shakespeare; 4) by de-stabilizing a child's sense of self and identity.  This is a natural byproduct of de-sexing every child, which happens through mandates to teach kids about transgenderism; and 5) by promoting relational aggression against any child or parent who might resist this totalitarian program.  Radical education reform encourages schools and communities to single out those who disagree with this coercive program as misfits, bigots, or religious nuts.  All of the above would subvert anybody's ability to think clearly.  It leaves children unmoored from reality and in a constant state of anxiety about being socially rejected by peers or teachers for thinking thoughts deemed wrong.

WA College Helps Parents 'Cure' Their Toddlers of Racism and Sexism.  The workshop, for parents of children aged 3-6, includes a presentation, handouts, group activities, and homework that will help you cure your young children of any attachment they have to rational thought.  That way, they don't have to wait until college to find out that their ideas about race and gender are outdated.  The class is taught by a grad student who, according to the event page, is "engaged in education initiatives focused on inclusion and equity."

Justice Department no longer fighting injunction on transgender school guidance.  The Justice Department on Friday [2/10/2017] signaled it stopped fighting to overturn a national injunction blocking the federal government from giving guidance to schools and transgender students, another sign President Donald Trump's administration is taking a different approach than former President Barack Obama's.  A hearing was set for next Tuesday in the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in which the Justice Department was fighting Texas and 11 other states, which had filed a lawsuit to prevent the Education Department from being able to give that guidance to transgender students that they are allowed to use restrooms that match their gender identity.

Baltimore mom outraged after third grader comes home missing 3 teeth.  Shanda Flemming thought she was signing a permission slip for her son to get a routine dental cleaning at school, but was shocked when he came home missing three teeth. [...] Her 9-year-old son, Michael, is missing two teeth on one side and one on the bottom.  Flemming claims she was not notified by the elementary school about the procedures, which were done by a dental program visiting the school.

LGBT groups want halt to Utah school laws involving homosexuality talk in schools.  A pair of gay rights advocacy groups said Thursday [1/26/2017] a judge should halt Utah state laws that discriminate against LGBT students by restricting talk about homosexuality in schools.

Violence in the Halls, Disorder in the Malls.  If Donald Trump wants to make schools safe again, he must rescind the Obama administration's diktats regarding classroom discipline, which are based on a fantasy version of reality that is having serious real-world consequences.  The Obama Justice and Education Departments have strong-armed schools across the country to all but eliminate the suspension and expulsion of insubordinate students.  The reason?  Because black students are disciplined at higher rates than whites.  According to Washington bureaucrats, such disproportionate suspensions can mean only one thing:  teachers and administrators are racist.  The Obama administration rejects the proposition that black students are more likely to assault teachers or fight with other students in class.

Federal Appeals Court Nixes Blanket Drug Screening of State College Students.  Last week a federal appeals court ruled that requiring incoming students at a state college to surrender their urine for drug testing violates the Fourth Amendment's ban on unreasonable searches.  The decision is a welcome departure from a body of case law that usually defers to the government's perception of "special needs" that supposedly justify analyzing people's bodily fluids without a warrant or any evidence that they pose a threat to public safety.  Linn State Technical College, now known as the State Technical College of Missouri, started demanding incoming students' urine in 2011 because members of its advisory council thought it was a good idea, not because there was any reason to believe the school had any special drug-related safety problems.

Why the Education Establishment Hates Cursive.  You rarely see thoughtful praise of cursive.  Even people who are sentimentally inclined to support cursive can't think of many reasons to do so.  I propose a higher truth:  the Education Establishment is always a reliable guide to what is good.  If our socialist professors rail against X, you know that X is educational gold.  Here are eight reasons why cursive is valuable and we should fight to keep it in the classroom: [...]

16 Most Ridiculously PC Moments on College Campuses in 2016.  [#10]  A student was hit with a "safe space" complaint for raising her hand.  A student at Edinburgh University in Scotland said she was hit with a "safe space" complaint for raising her hand to disagree during a student-council meeting.  The school's "Safe Space Policy" strictly forbade "hand gestures which denote disagreement" because apparently they are just too scary for adult students to handle.

Secondary school BANS pupils from raising hands in class because it 'doesn't challenge and support the learning of all'.  A secondary school has today been accused of putting 'gimmicks' over education after banning pupils from raising their hands to answer questions.  The Samworth Church Academy in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, has written to parents to say it has abolished the 'age old practice' because it doesn't 'challenge and support the learning of all'.  But the move has been criticised by some parents and the National Union of Teachers (NUT), who said it 'shows a lack of respect' to staff at the school.  Parents and other headteachers have called it 'bizarre' and a 'step backwards'.

School Bans Students from Raising Their Hands to Answer Questions.  Samworth Church Academy, a high school in Nottinghamshire in the U.K., has banned its students from raising their hands to answer questions because it is unfair to students who do not raise their hands.  In a letter explaining the policy, Samworth principal Barry Found called hand-raising an "age-old practice."  "We find that the same hands are going up and as such the teaching does not challenge and support the learning of all," he said, according to an article in the Daily Mail.  Samworth teachers have been instructed to forbid hand-raising in their classrooms and instead call on students at random to answer questions — which is completely and totally ridiculous.

The Editor says...
If nobody seems to know the answer to the teacher's latest question, and little Jimmy finally raises his hand to indicate otherwise, that is now counted as a microaggression, due to the ban on "hand gestures which denote disagreement."  But unfortunately the students will someday encounter many such gestures, and it would be better to have the schools prepare them for a world of controversy.

Is it Time to Stop Running Our Schools Like Factories?  Since the 19th century, the United States has adopted what is known as the "Prussian model" of teaching (also known as the "factory model").  We would recognize the manifestation of this model fairly easily:  a teacher at the front of the room, and neat rows of desks with students sitting in front of him/her.  The purpose of this structure is fairly simple:  the teacher is giving students information in "assembly-line fashion," and the students — through memorization, repetition, and eventually testing — hopefully retain it.  The reason education was modeled this way so long ago was to prepare students for factory work.  The Industrial era needed a steady stream of bodies to ensure that production did not wane and the economy did not suffer.  The problem is that we no longer live in this era or learn in this way.  Our civilization has changed drastically since the 19th century.  Our workplaces have changed, our social mores have changed, what we know about the mind has changed, our cultural demographics have changed, and our technology has definitely changed.  The only thing, it seems, that hasn't changed is our way of educating.

California Voters to Decide Whether Schools May Teach Students in Spanish.  Voters in California will weigh in Tuesday on a decades-old debate about bilingual education in the state's public school system.  The outcome ultimately could determine whether California schools will continue to be required to teach in English, or may use Spanish or another language.  Although largely overlooked in a crowded election season, the issue has split Californians into two camps, those who believe the country benefits from a multilingual society and those who believe such policies hurt students and serve only to further ethnic and racial divides.

UT prof claims 'inappropriate' name guess is sexual harassment.  A student at the University of Tennessee was accused of sexual harassment after incorrectly identifying the name of his instructor on a geology quiz.  Keaton Wahlbon guessed "Sarah Jackson," resulting in a grade of "0" because the name is apparently shared by a nude model.  When Wahlbon appealed the grade, professor Bill Deane refused to reconsider, asserting that guessing that name "meets the Title IX definition of sexual harassment.

'White pride' shirts prompt Polson protest.  Polson School District has condemned the actions of some high school students who included racially charged messages on outfits worn as part of a school spirit day Thursday [9/29/2016].  Photos of the outfits were widely shared on social media and have spurred a protest that was expected to take place at Polson High School's football stadium Friday during homecoming festivities.  According to a press release from the district, each class was assigned a color for the day.  The seniors were instructed to wear black, the juniors to wear white, the sophomores to wear blue and the freshmen to wear green.

Clemson Bans Mentions of Harambe the Gorilla Because of Racism And Rape Culture.  It looks like all the fuss began with a silly meme.  Is that really supposed to be enough to ban all references to an animal that's been in the news lately?

KU bars gorillas from jungle-theme decoration due to 'masculine image'.  An RA at the University of Kansas was advised against incorporating an image of a gorilla into a jungle-themed floor decoration because the animal apparently represents "a very masculine image."  Assistant Complex Director Dale Morrow also noted that there are "stereotypes that surround this animal," and therefore its inclusion in the display would not be "inclusive."

Separate but equal schools:
University offers segregated housing to shield black students from 'microaggressions'.  Segregated housing will now be available to black students at California State University Los Angeles as a means of combating "microaggressions" and "racially insensitive remarks."  School officials have honored requests by CSLA's Black Student Union and will offer "housing space delegated for Black students" at the Halisi Scholars Black Living-Learning Community.  CSLA spokesman Robert Lopez told education watchdog the College Fix on Tuesday [9/6/2016] via email that its segregated housing will also focus on "academic excellence and learning experiences that are inclusive and non-discriminatory."

A California University's Troubling Ties to Terrorism.  San Francisco State University (SFSU), which has a well-deserved reputation as a breeding ground for anti-Israel radicalism, became national news in April.  That's when campus police stood by as a hate-Israel group, the General Union of Palestinian Students (GUPS), shouted down and disrupted a lecture by Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, prompting much criticism of SFSU's president, Leslie Wong.  But there's worse.  As revealed by an investigation into SFSU by Campus Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum, SFSU has partnered with a Palestinian university that's a hotbed of radicalization.  What our investigation turned up:  SFSU signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with An-Najah University of Hebron in 2014 at the behest of Rabab Abdulhadi, director of SFSU's Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Initiative (AMED) and founding member of the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel.

George Washington University hires former Al Qaeda terrorist as homeland security expert.  Jesse Morton has been hired as an Islamic terrorism expert to work in George Washington University's Program on Extremism.  Mr. Morton used to go by the name Younus Abdullah Muhammad when he served as a recruiter for the al-Qaeda terrorist network.  That's right, George Washington University has hired a "former" Islamic terrorist as an expert on homeland security.

A College Strikes Back Against Safe Spaces.  [Scroll down]  Mind you, the extreme leftness of academia — there are around five times as many liberal professors as conservative ones, according to a 2014 survey by the University of California Los Angeles — means that even if this trend of ditching safe spaces continues, few liberal students will be seriously affected by hearing challenging ideas, at least in the classroom.

Lifelike baby dolls not effective birth control, study finds.  A weekend spent mothering a robot baby to mirror the "real experience" of parenting is meant to discourage teenage girls from getting pregnant.  But so-called Baby Think it Over dolls don't cut teen pregnancy rates and in fact increase the risk, Australian research has found.  In a study published in The Lancet medical journal Friday, researchers found teenage girls who used the lifelike computerized dolls as part of a pregnancy-prevention program were more likely to become pregnant compared with girls receiving a less high-tech sex education.

Md. school district:  Don't tell parents of transgender males bunking with daughters on field trips.  A Maryland school district is instructing teachers and administrators not to tell parents if their daughters are bunking with male transgender students on overnight field trips.  Bob Mosier, chief communications officer for the Anne Arundel County public school system, says in a training video on how to accommodate transgender students that privacy issues prevent the district from informing parents about such arrangements.

Illegal Immigration:  Destroying Schools One District at a Time.  Illegals aliens bring their children, so-called DREAMERs, into the country, and thanks to Democrats, we require that schools accept every child in their district without regard to the immigration status of the child or the family.  Like their parents, these illegal alien children can't speak English, and are uneducated in their home language.  That means that tremendous resources must be used to "mainstream" these kids into the classroom.  That does two things.  First, it takes resources away from kids who are, and whose families are, US citizens.  For the most part, these families pay the taxes to run the schools and their kids are getting robbed of any chance of a decent education by the flood of illegals taking up classroom resources.  Second, it slows down the learning process for the entire class, because these kids can't be just put into a special needs classroom until they're able to keep up, because that might "scar them."  Rather than call attention to the fact that they have no business in a regular classroom, educators mainstream them and slow down the whole class.

Labor board rules that university students can unionize.  Graduate students at private U.S. universities can unionize, the National Labor Relations Board ruled Tuesday [8/23/2016] in a decision that could upend the balance of power on campuses and deliver new members to labor unions.  Critics called the decision politically motivated, saying it will make it even tougher to cut costs and reform the country's higher education system.  But labor advocates cheered, saying universities have been maltreating graduate students for years, and this new ruling gives those students the power to demand better.  The NLRB said that students who are compensated for teaching classes or handling other official roles for their universities — "student assistants" — are employees of the schools, and are therefore covered under federal labor laws.

Texas teacher implements no-homework policy, the Internet rejoices.  A second grade teacher's no-homework policy has gone viral, thanks to a student's mother posting about it on Facebook.  Last week, mom Samantha Gallagher posted a note on Facebook from her daughter's teacher reading:  "After much research this summer, I'm trying something new.  Homework will only consist of work that your student did not finish during the school day.  There will be no formally assigned homework this year."  Godley Elementary School teacher Brandy Young told parents research doesn't prove homework improves performance.  So, she said, time after school is best spent eating dinner as a family, reading together, playing outside and getting children to bed early.

The Editor says...
Maybe so, but "eating dinner as a family, reading together [and] playing outside" aren't feasible if the kid goes directly from school to daycare and then home to a single mother who's been at work all day.

School Rule Posted At Catholic High School For Boys Sparks Debate.  One strict rule at a high school has gone viral and sparked debate.  Catholic High School for Boys posted a sign on Facebook six days ago, and it has now been shared more than 110,000 times.  The message tells parents to turn around at the front door if they're bringing something for their sons.  "If you are dropping off your son's forgotten lunch, books, homework, equipment, etc., please turn around and exit the building.  Your son will learn to problem-solve."

The Editor says...
If the school administration is using "problem-solve" as a verb, that's an incompetent school.

Why not just teach English?
Middle Schoolers Quizzed on Words 'Popo, Bling Bling, True Dat'.  Some middle school students in Georgia got a lesson in slang from the streets this week and some parents are not pleased.  WSAV-TV is reporting a class at Godley Station School got quizzed on words like "punked," "popo," "true dat" and "bling bling."  A parent posted the quiz online and now many are questioning what arrived on the desks of some Savannah-Chatham students this week.

New School 'Gender Unicorn' Sparks Parental Outrage.  A protest was held Tuesday [8/9/2016] after a school district in North Carolina created a "gender unicorn" to teach staff and faculty about gender identity, gender expression and transgenderism.  Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS), a school district in Charlotte, N.C., created a purple unicorn with two hearts to explain transgenderism in training materials for school staff, reports WCNC.  The school district will use the training materials to teach staff and faculty how to best help transgender students.  The North Carolina Values Coalition led a protest against CMS' plans to let transgender students use the pronouns, name and bathroom according to their gender identity.  Speakers at the protest said that new CMS policy infringes on student privacy.

Good Grief:  Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Want To Stop Calling Kids Boys And Girls.  Why can't hardcore nutjob moonbat liberals just let kids be kids?  Why do they have to push their crazy ideas on kids?  Why can't they just mind their own business and, oh, say, teach them subjects which will allow them to be functional members of society?

Two murals at University of Wisconsin-Stout to be removed: 'Psychologically devastating'.  Two inoffensive murals hanging in the lobby of Harvey Hall at the University of Wisconsin-Stout (UW-Stout) are being removed because of a recommendation of the so-called Diversity Leadership Team.  One mural depicts a wooden fort, and the other depicts French trappers canoeing down a river with Indians.  No violence, no depiction of white supremacy — about as inoffensive as you can find.  But the DLT claims that the murals may be psychologically devastating to American Indian students.

College Takes Down Historical Paintings Because They Might Traumatize Students.  Since 1936, two large murals by Cal Peters portraying early Wisconsin history have dominated the common area of Harvey Hall at the University of Wisconsin-Stout (UW-Stout). One mural shows French fur traders and American Indians traveling down the Red Cedar River by canoe, while another portrays a wooden fort constructed by the French.  Neither painting shows any violence at all.  But now, after 80 years, the murals are abruptly being given the heave-ho after concerns were raised that the paintings are offensive.

Satanists Push Clubs for Elementary Schools.  [Satanists are] plotting to bring their wisdom to the nation's public elementary school children.  They point out that Christian evangelical groups already have infiltrated the lives of America's children through after-school religious programming in public schools, and they appear determined to give young students a choice:  Jesus or Satan.  "It's critical that children understand that there are multiple perspectives on all issues, and that they have a choice in how they think," said Doug Mesner, the Satanic Temple's co-founder.

An After School Satan Club could be coming to your kid's elementary school.  "It's critical that children understand that there are multiple perspectives on all issues, and that they have a choice in how they think," said Doug Mesner, the Satanic Temple's co-founder.  On Monday [8/1/2016], the group plans to introduce its After School Satan Club to public elementary schools, including one in Prince George's County, petitioning school officials to allow them to open immediately as the academic year starts.

Sunday Washington Post Hypes After School Satan Clubs.  On Sunday (the Sabbath, of course), The Washington Post took time out from prostrating itself before Hillary Clinton to give a boost to the Fallen Angel.  In a long. front page middle finger to Christians, the Post hyped the efforts of the Satanic Temple to introduce After School Satan Clubs to America's elementary schools.  Oh, don't worry.  The worldly secularists at the Post aren't suddenly practicing the occult.  "The Satanic Temple doesn't espouse a belief in the existence of a supernatural being that other religions identify solemnly as Satan, or Lucifer, or Beelzebub," author Katherine Stewart assures readers.  Goodness no!  They're far too postmodern and ironic for that.  "The Temple rejects all forms of supernaturalism and is committed to the view that scientific rationality provides the best measure of reality."

Science Teachers Giving Unbalanced Education on Climate Change.  A nationwide survey of 1,500 U.S. middle and high school science teachers, conducted by the National Center for Science Education and published in the February 12 issue of Science, found half of the teachers who discuss climate change in the classroom ignore evidence of the role of natural factors. [...] Jane Shaw, former president and current board member of the John W. Pope Center for Higher Education Policy, says the study's authors are the ones getting the science wrong.  "The survey's authors assume humans 'are causing' climate change, as though that were the only cause," said Shaw.  "That assumption is not scientific at all.  Humans may be contributing, but [they are] exclusively causing it?  That's ridiculous."  Shaw says teachers should teach the truth, not worry about sending mixed messages.  "Equally bad is the claim teachers should shave the truth in order to avoid sending 'mixed messages' to middle school and high school students," said Shaw.  "Telling the truth is bad because it sends 'mixed messages?'  That's a horrifying claim."

Massive K-12 Reading Failure Explained.  [Scroll down]  The evil genius of whole-word reading is to coerce children into processing a simple phonetic word as though it were a human face.  Look at all of the activity involved in identifying this person — about 25 saccades to identify one face.  For victims of bad pedagogy, reading is hard work indeed.  Instead of a few flicks, there may be a few dozen flicks.  Instead of a fraction of a second, the process may take a fraction of a minute.  Reading, far from being quick and fun, becomes difficult and tedious.  Fewer people achieve full literacy.  Fewer Americans reach the point where they can read for pleasure.

School safety drills are terrorizing our kids.  As sensationalized as mass shootings have become, they're still extremely rare.  We are much more likely to die in a car accident or from an illness than in any kind of mass shooting, let alone a school shooting.  According to the FBI, there were 479 gun fatalities for all children under 18 in 2013, the last year for which they have data.  In a population of about 74 million kids and teens, that makes the likelihood of dying via a gun 0.000646 percent.  No one wants to make light of even one child being killed, at school or anywhere else, but the likelihood of such a thing happening remains extremely slim.  So why are we raising kids with these chilling drills that can do lasting mental damage to them?

Colleges cool to feds' campaign to purge criminal history questions from applications.  College-bound high school students who have had trouble with the law may still have to check a certain box the Obama administration wants off of admissions forms.  Not all colleges and universities are buying into the Department of Education's "Beyond the Box" campaign to stop admissions officers from forcing applicants to disclose criminal and disciplinary histories.  The administration believes such probing is a barrier to minorities, but critics say schools have a right to know if incoming students have rap sheets.  "It's a nationwide social experiment putting college students at risk," said Dan Gainor, of the Media Research Institute.  "If you commit crimes — sexual assault, domestic violence and others — we have a right to know and decide whether we want to associate with you."

An Education in DC Driver's Ed.  The program consists of 30 hours in the classroom and 8 hours of behind-the-wheel practice, presumably with an instructor.  That's exactly backwards.  My research tells me there are zero instances of people sitting in a classroom being killed in an auto crash, but there are thousands happening on the street.  The ratio should instead be 8 hours in the classroom and 30 on the road.  There the instructor could introduce the fledgling driver to the mystery of the turn signal and explain how it's not just for turning, but comes in handy for lane changes, too!

Many parents give new mind-boggling report cards an F.  As a lawyer, Dennis Weldon has to make sense of tortuous legal papers.  But a year ago, the Plumstead Township resident opened a nine-page document that left him flummoxed.  It was his child's report card from Gayman Elementary School in the Central Bucks School District.  Gone was the traditional A-B-C-D-F report from the teacher.  Instead, parents were sent to their computers to click open a nine-page digital document with row after row of learning standards and success indicators for specific reading or math skills.  Grades ranged from a high of E (exceeding standards), through M (meeting standards) and A (approaching standards), down to LP (limited progress).

1.2 Million Foreign Students in American Universities.  Numbers and quantities matter in all facets of public policy, but nowhere are numbers more consequential than in the debate over immigration and visa programs.  Today [5/2/2016], Immigration Customs and Enforcement released its quarterly international student data detailing the number of foreign students residing in this country under the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP).

With Apologies to Nathan Hale.  [Scroll down]  In St. Paul, Minn., two high school students punched and body-slammed a teacher who had complained about lenient disciplinary policies that had led to assaults against teachers.  Both students were black, all the beaten-up teachers were white.  The Obama administration has threatened school districts with lawsuits and funding cuts if the school punishes the perpetrators.

More Tests Track Children's Emotions.  Thanks to a new federal requirement inside a new law Republicans promised us meant a return to "local control," schools are beginning to track student emotions and behavior to be used in government ratings of school quality, even as researchers say these evaluations are not trustworthy.  The Every Student Succeeds Act, which recently replaced No Child Left Behind, includes a provision allowing states to use "alternative measures" for evaluating public schools.  The act specifically states this could include "school climate" surveys and "any other indicator" that states and school districts are beginning to use as a license to track children's emotions and behavior, The New York Times reports (as did Education Week before the bill passed).

A Liberal Magazine Just Spilled the Beans about K-12 Education.  American public schools, for many decades, have been a killing field for mathematical achievement.  John Saxon became a legend in the late 1980s for his valiant effort to create instruction that would replace the nonsense epidemic in the schools.  The Education Establishment resisted Saxon with all of its considerable resources.  These officials had come up with New Math circa 1964 and then Reform Math after 1985.  All those bad, and very unpopular, approaches have modulated into Common Core Math.  All bunk according to many analysts, but that doesn't mean our Education Establishment willingly lets a smidgen of it go.

Parents to face charges if they approach school to pick up child under new policy.  Texas parents have had enough of an elementary school's new pick up policy that reportedly could have them face trespassing charges if they try to get their child after the school day is over.  Bear Branch Elementary in Magnolia implemented the policy at the beginning of the school year.  Under the new rules, if a student does not take the bus, parents must wait in the mile-long car pick up line to get their child, according to Fox 26 Houston.  Now, some parents have pulled their kids from the school.  "She's threatening to arrest people," Wendy Jarman said about Principal Holly Ray to the Fox station.

School's new policy bans parents from walking children to school.  Pick your child up from school and you could be charged with trespassing.  That's the threat against parents at Bear Branch Elementary School in Magnolia ISD.  This is the school's tactic to keep parents who live close to the school from walking on school grounds.  Bear Branch is losing students over this pick up policy, that's been in place since the beginning of this school year.  The principal has decided that no matter how close the student lives to the school, the student must either take the bus, or the parent must wait in a long car pickup line.  Try to walk your student off the campus and you could face criminal charges.

The Editor says...
No matter how close you live, you can't walk to that school.  Is the school not on public property?  Can pedestrians with no connection to the school walk by?  Why are the schools centrally located in neighborhoods if the kids can't go there on foot?  And aren't these the same nanny-state bureaucrats who preach about childhood obesity?  Maybe walking to school would be good for them.

Texas School Threatens to Punish Parents Who Walk Children Home.  In September, Houston's KPRC 2 News (NBC) reported the new rule prohibited parents from walking to the Magnolia Independent School District campus to retrieve their own children.  Parents cannot drive to the school, park their cars at the school, or go inside to get their children early.  Their options are to send their children home by school bus or drive to the school and wait for their children in a very long pickup car line assembling for the 3:25 p.m. dismissal.

Magnolia ISD threatens to arrest parents for walking kids home from school.  It's a bad time to be a kid at Bear Branch Elementary.  The new principal this year, Holly Ray, may look as sweet as sunshine, but parents says she's got some wicked ways!  For one, she won't let parents walk up to the Magnolia elementary school to get their kids after school.  They have to be in a car.  And she's serious!

The Editor asks...
What if you don't own a car, or your car is in the repair shop?

Texas School Bans Parents From Walking Children Onto and From School Property.  One Texas elementary school is coming under fire after the principal banned parents from walking their children to and from school, and who is threatening parents with arrest.  The trouble began in September when the principal at Bear Branch Elementary School in Magnolia, Texas, decided to implement a policy that not just discourages but prohibits parents from walking their children home from school or walking inside the school to retrieve their children after parents had parked their cars, according to KPRC-TV.

Texas Principal Wants to Arrest Parents Who Let Kids Walk to School.  'They have been threatened, if they step one foot on school property, they will be arrested and charged with who knows what.'

Hey kids, how much privilege do you have?  Quiz riles Florida parents.  Kids at Monroe Middle School in Florida got a lesson on privilege the other day — in their Spanish class.  "How much privilege do you have?  That was the name of the survey administered to seventh and eighth grade students.  It wasn't quite as bad as the white-shaming exercises we've seen on university campuses and in the Armed Forces.  But it was certainly inappropriate for a bunch of 12, 13 and 14-year-olds.

Tennessee lawmakers fume over state university's 'Sex Week'.  Youngsters at the Volunteer State's flagship university are about to engage in all sorts of debauchery ranging from lessons on male sexual fluidity to a lecture [...] from an amateur porn star.  Sex Week at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville kicks off April 4 — five days of depravity that makes Mardi Gras on Bourbon Street look like a Sunday school picnic.  The star of the show is Sophia St. James, a self-described "queer diesel femme."

New Mexico college recruiting undocumented students.  Western New Mexico University recently launched a campaign targeting potential students like [Grecia] Rivas using a combination of social media and face-to-face recruiting.  Through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, the school works to convince the students they'd find a hospitable environment for immigrants and possible financial aid at the 3,700-student university located in the mining town of Silver City.  Other colleges, like City University of New York and Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, have followed the same trend as schools search for more students amid nationally declining enrollments.

Yet another reason to homeschool:
New York City teacher fined $300 for showing ISIS video.  A New York City teacher was fined — not fired — as punishment for showing a video of an ISIS beheading to a middle school class.  A veteran teacher at the South Bronx Academy for Applied Media says she mistakenly showed a video of an Islamic State beheading to her eighth grade class.  She was fined $300, at the discretion of an arbiter, while the City Department of Education pushed to fire her, according to a report from the New York Post.  "This teacher demonstrated a complete lack of judgment, and this incident betrayed our schools' promise to provide a safe and supportive environment," Department of Education spokeswoman Devora Kaye told the New York Post.

This was originally published in 1998:
To destroy your privacy, to destroy your life.  As always, Clinton and Gore are photographed with children using computers, claiming that they are the real interest.  They promise a computer for every child in government schools, which is just the latest "chicken in every pot" version of the socialist redistribution schemes entrenched since FDR's New (Red) Deal.  It takes a village idiot to believe their fluff.  In reality, the computer-and-kids propaganda is a cover for destroying personal privacy and liberty.  Ari Schwartz is a specialist who works for OMB Watch, a private group that watches the White House Office of Management and Budget.  According to Schwartz, almost half of the 70 federal agencies checked are in the business of collecting personal information from Internet users, including names, addresses and Social Security numbers.  The agencies provide no notices as to how the personal data is or will be used.

Letting undocumented workers teach in NY called 'insane'.  The state Conservative Party chairman on Friday [2/25/2016] ripped the state Education Department for a new policy that will let some undocumented workers apply to be teachers in New York.  The regulation, approved by state Board of Regents this week, is drawing criticism from Republicans and conservatives, but support from Democrats.  The measure would allow people who can't get legal residency because of their parents' immigration status to seek teacher certifications — as well as apply for more than 50 professional licenses managed by the Education Department.  State Conservative Party chairman Mike Long called the policy "bureaucrats gone wild," charging that it's another attempt by governments with liberal policies to thwart immigrant laws.

Cost effectiveness of NC's green schools debated.  A new report for the John Locke Foundation says green schools in North Carolina and nationally fall short of their promised energy savings and can be less energy-efficient than traditional schools.  The report looked at green schools in four North Carolina school districts, including Wake and Durham counties, and found most were less energy-efficient than similar schools in their districts.  The report, which was released this week, says that the failure of those schools to produce energy savings as promised is an "environmental failure."  Proponents of green building say that most schools built according to environmentally sensitive principles do save money and can have other benefits for students.

University rebukes instructor who banned 'mom,' 'dad' and other gendered words from class.  The University of Florida's stellar free-speech rating from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education may be at risk of slipping.  A lecturer and "dance/movement therapist" is threatening students with lower grades if they use gendered words such as "mom" and "dad" in assignments or if they make classmates feel "unsafe or unwelcome."

The Good News in American Higher Education.  [Scroll down]  The public and even college administrators are increasingly fed-up with extreme, over-the-top campus politics that seem to have reached their own absurd conclusion.  Recent expletive-filled, mob-rule protests, fueled by outrageous demands and coupled with histrionic cowering in so-called "safe spaces" have led many observers to conclude that the inmates are running the asylum and that this nonsense has to stop.  All this for just $65,000 a year?  Does anyone even go to class?

Cop in uniform tossed from college classroom by 'uncomfortable' teacher.  A Georgia police officer taking classes in his spare time got an unwanted lesson from a college instructor last week, but now it is the school that is feeling blue — and apologizing.  The unidentified cop was wearing his uniform and carrying his service gun when the Darton State College instructor reportedly became uncomfortable with his presence, according to WALB-TV.  School officials confirmed the police officer was escorted out of the classroom, but did not elaborate.

UConn building 'black-only' living space to promote scholarship.  Faced with alarmingly low graduation rates for black males, the University of Connecticut is trying something it calls bold — and critics call segregation.  The school's main campus in Storrs has launched a program slated for fall in which 40 black male undergraduates live together in on-campus housing.  Proponents believe the students can draw on their common experiences and help each other make it to commencement.  But others cringe at the idea of black-only housing, saying it turns decades of hard-fought racial progress on its head.

The Editor says...
Where's the separate but equal whites-only dorm?  Wouldn't white students find it easier to study with no blacks around?  Whaaaat?  That rationale only works in one direction?  This whole idea is an example of "the soft bigotry of low expectations."*  In this case it is assumed that blacks can't make it to graduation except under the most favorable conditions.

Black-only dorm at UConn
This University Is Building a Black Only Residence.  The University of Connecticut has an unusual perspective on diversity.  UConn is building a separate residence for black males.  They think this racially segregated housing will help with retention and graduation.  The university hopes to "make UConn feel like home" and match students with like-minded peers. [...] Dr. Erik Hines, a professor of educational psychology at UConn said black students are graduating at a lower rate "so the University of Connecticut was forward-thinking in bringing a solution to this issue."  There is absolutely no common sense in this solution.  What if we had an only white residence?


University Forces Students To Share Sexual History Before Registering For Classes.  The University of Southern California (USC) is forcing students to complete an online training course and fill out a questionnaire detailing their sexual history before they can register for classes.  USC sent out a campus-wide email explaining that the course was "mandatory, and you must complete it by February 9, 2016.  If you do not complete the training by this date you will receive a registration hold until the training is complete," according to Campus Reform's Anthony Gockowski.

Update:
USC apologizes for questioning students about their sexual history.  The University of Southern California has issued an apology for including questions about students' sexual history in a sexual assault training course required for registration.  In a statement to the Washington Examiner, USC Senior Vice President for Administration Todd Dickey apologized for the questions and said they have been removed from the training.

DOJ grants $63 million for social justice school discipline promoted by Bill Ayers.  According to an October 1st statement from Attorney General Eric Holder, "This funding is being awarded as part of the Comprehensive School Safety Initiative — a large-scale, multi-agency research effort to build practical, and scientifically-sound, knowledge about effective ways to increase school safety nationwide."  However, according to a review of past and current restorative justice initiatives in schools, the funding appears to be just another effort to expand whole-child social justice reforms touted by far-left progressive educators like William Ayers.  Believing that the American education system is inherently racist and oppressive and students of color only act out because they are victims of that system, Ayers began writing about restorative justice alternatives to school discipline many years ago.

The New Preschool Is Crushing Kids.  Step into an American preschool classroom today and you are likely to be bombarded with what we educators call a print-rich environment, every surface festooned with alphabet charts, bar graphs, word walls, instructional posters, classroom rules, calendars, schedules, and motivational platitudes — few of which a 4-year-old can "decode," the contemporary word for what used to be known as reading.  Because so few adults can remember the pertinent details of their own preschool or kindergarten years, it can be hard to appreciate just how much the early-education landscape has been transformed over the past two decades.  The changes are not restricted to the confusing pastiche on classroom walls.  Pedagogy and curricula have changed too, most recently in response to the Common Core State Standards Initiative's kindergarten guidelines.

"Whole word" reading:
Why Kids Can't Read.  [Scroll down]  So if you want to understand why reading is difficult, it's because the commissars who took over the field of education changed the game.  They moved the goalposts, oh, about a mile.  They changed the very nature of the activity from something that is as basic as walking, which everyone can do, to a much more elaborate activity, much like dancing in a Broadway show, which very few can do.  That's a quick and quite accurate description of the biggest education story of the last century.  It is not the complete story.  The other major part of the story is the aiding and abetting that have kept this swindle in play.  Millions of professors, principals, administrators, and teachers have promoted and protected this destructive con.  And still do.  Imagine being an accomplice in something that makes people suffer throughout their lives.

The DOE is now in the High School Girl's Shower.  The Civil Rights Division of the DoE declared a new cultural battleground when it sent a letter to Dr. Daniel Cates, Superintendent of the Township High School District 211, a school district near Palentine, Illinois, accusing the district violating anti-discrimination laws when it did not allow a transgender student who identifies as a girl to change and shower with the girls in the girls' locker room without restrictions.  The DoE gave the district 30 days to accommodate the transgender student or lose its Title IX funding.  The problem began when the transgender student's family filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights (OCR), because the student was not allowed to shower with the female students.  The student filing the complaint is biologically male, but self-identifies as female.  The school made arrangements to accommodate transgender students by providing separate, private facilities for the student to use to use.  This was not satisfactory for this student.

Principal doesn't want teachers sitting — so she threw out all their desks.  A Bronx principal ordered her teachers to give up their desks last week, and had the furniture dumped at the curb — telling staff she doesn't want them sitting in class.  Donna Connelly, principal of PS 24, the Spuyten Duyvil School in Riverdale, also told teachers to empty their filing cabinets, which she then discarded.  With class in session, teachers were told to push their desks and cabinets into the hallway.  Custodians then hauled them outside and piled them like trash on the blacktop of a school across the street.  "It's the 21st century — you don't need desks," Connelly said, sources told The [New York] Post.

The Editor says...
Yes, it's the 21st century.  If schools don't need desks, why do they need principals?  Why do they stop teaching during the summer?  Why do schools encourage activities (cheerleading and football) that injure and sometimes kill their students?

Famed teacher files $1B class-action suit against L.A. schools.  The nation's second largest school district has been hit with a $1 billion class-action lawsuit alleging it conducts "witch hunts" against older teachers in a "shrewd" effort to save money on retirement benefits.  The suit was filed Thursday [10/15/2015] on behalf of about 2,000 teachers by Rafe Esquith, 61, one of the Los Angeles Unified School District's best-known and most popular teachers.

What the Heck Are 'Word Attack Skills'?  According to our literacy experts, if children are to become expert readers, they have to learn "word attack skills."  Okay, that's jargon we don't really need.  But let's go with it.  What are these word attack skills that the experts are talking about?  At this point, we are entering an alternative universe.  Your common sense will be offended, and your credulity will be stretched.  For, as we'll see, our Education Establishment has been searching for literacy in all the wrong places.

Florida school board reaches $600G settlement over principal who hypnotized students.  The families of three high school students who died after being hypnotized by a former principal will receive $200,000 each from a Florida school district under a settlement agreement approved Tuesday [10/6/2015].

State Gives 10-Yr-Olds Free Birth Control Implants.  Children as young as 10 years old are receiving taxpayer-funded birth control in Washington State, according to public records obtained by Judicial Watch from the agency that provides medical coverage for the poor.  JW filed a public records request with the Washington Health Care Authority after reading a disturbing article in a pro-life news site over the summer about a Seattle high school that offers different forms of birth control without parental knowledge or consent.  This includes implanting an intrauterine device (IUD) in a girl's uterus free of cost.  It's part of an initiative offered by Medicaid, the joint federal and state insurance program for the poor.  The article points out the irony that a teen in Seattle can't get a sugary soft drink in high school but can have a device implanted into her uterus.

Elementary School Teaching Children to Throw Books at Classroom Gunmen.  A father is outraged after learning that an "active shooter protocol" at his children's school, Stevenson Elementary in Heath, Ohio, includes encouraging his eight-year-old son to throw books at the gunman.  According to Fox 28, Dean Spencer says his nine-year-old daughter and eight-year-old son "were told by school teachers to throw books at anyone with a gun should they ever make their way into their library or classroom."

Michelle Obama's school lunch group: Americans 'clearly support' new rules.  How deluded is Michelle Obama's school lunch organization "Let's Move"?  A press release issued in advance of the new school year claims that kids love the new standards, and Americans "clearly support" what they're trying to do. [...] Only someone educated in public schools would be unable to see through this push poll.  The facts are a little different.  [#1] More than a million kids have dropped out of the school lunch program.  [#2] Food waste — that is, the weight of food thrown out by kids who refuse to eat the unappetizing fare — is up 56%.  [#3] Eighty percent of school districts report having financial problems because fewer kids are in the program.

The Data Destroyers.  A few weeks ago, the California education department did a peculiar thing: It scrubbed historical data about standardized-test scores from its public DataQuest website.  This being a government agency, it immediately began to lie to the public about why it had done this.  California law forbids using comparisons between different tests to set policy or evaluate programs.  This makes sense:  If last year 40 percent of students received 85th-percentile ratings on a standardized test and then this year 70 percent of students received 85th-percentile ratings on a different standardized test, it is likely that the radical difference is in the test, not in students' performance.  The law, however, says not one word about making historical test-score data available to the public or suppressing that data.

Hiring of accused pedophile rocks Albuquerque school system.  He was slated to be second-in-command at Albuquerque Public Schools, but Timothy Martinez has instead started the year as a fugitive on the run from police in two states before being captured Wednesday [8/26/2015] after he was revealed to be facing multiple outstanding child sex abuse charges in Colorado.

Why We Have More Than 40 Million Functional Illiterates.  [Scroll down]  Sight-word readers report the most amazing cognitive problems.  Words slide around on the page.  Words reverse themselves.  This doesn't seem to make sense until you consider that the eyes are jumping around on the page in random jerks, thus inducing complementary side-effects.  For many children, the next step is to be told they have dyslexia, which simply means they don't read well.  They are told they have ADHD.  They need an appointment with a shrink.  They need to take Ritalin.  Pretty soon these children are a mess inside and out, all because their school gave them an impossible task.  Even if you do memorize the 220 sight-words perfectly, you have been set up for a lifetime of cognitive schizophrenia.  You will read some words phonetically and some as designs, back and forth in no predictable order.

Are iris scanners on school buses necessary?  Cheryl Chumley, author of "Police State USA: How Orwell's Nightmare is Becoming Our Reality," appeared on CSPAN's Book TV After Words program to address the idea.  She discussed with Theresa Payton, former White House chief information officer, the roles of data and technology as applied to the American consumer and, more importantly, the American family.  That "any school would think iris scanners on buses were necessary" shocked Chumley.  She was also disturbed by the erosion of parental authority over the deployment of security technology.  Even when consent is sought, she said, "You can always use a worst case argument to justify any action by the government."

Obama's "Community Schools" Aim to Replace the Family.  Lawmakers and the Obama administration are plotting to unconstitutionally commandeer local schools and turn them into "full-service community schools" — government centers that will usurp vast new responsibilities over children that have traditionally been handled by parents and families.  Under the plan, adopted in the Senate last month as part of a massive "education bill" solidifying federal control over children and schools, federally funded so-called community schools will "target" families and children for "services" covering their "academic, physical, social, emotional, health, mental health, and other needs."  If Congress and the Obama administration get their way, these full-service parent-replacement centers will soon be coming to a community near you, along with the swarms of government workers in charge of "home visitation" and "parenting education" under the program.  In fact, even without legislation to authorize it, Obama's education bureaucracy has already started using tax funds to create the "community schools" nationwide.

University Language Guide Says Not to Use the Word 'American'.  I had a revelatory moment when reading this story.  Someone was actually paid to write this "language guide" that recommends not using certain words because they aren't "inclusive" enough, or don't reflect "diversity."  Someone sat around dreaming up reasons why some words that were historically innocuous, or even generated pride, had suddenly become objectionable.  What kind of loon would apply for a job like that?  No matter.  The University of New Hampshire's "Bias Free Language Guide" reinforces the notion that the elites at our universities have gone stark, raving mad, with the promise that their insanity will only get worse.

Kindergarten Application Asks If Child Had 'Vaginal' Birth.  Among the questions the admission form at a public elementary school in Connecticut asks parents is whether the child was delivered into the world via "vaginal" or "Caesarean" birth.  The taxpayer-funded school is Aiken Elementary in the serene, perfectly suburban town of West Hartford (pop. 63,268), reports local CBS affiliate WFSB.

Connecticut mom balks when son's kindergarten application gets personal.  A Connecticut mom wanted to snap her No. 2 pencil in half when she sat down to fill out her son's kindergarten application and came across personal questions about his birth that left her demanding answers instead of filling them out.  The application, which West Hartford School District officials say have been standard for decades, sought information such as whether Cara Paiuk's delivery was by C-section or not, whether there were other complications and even if her newborn son had gone home with his parents without delay.  Paiuk said she talked to other Aiken Elementary moms, and they also were taken aback by the intrusive questioning.

The Editor says...
School administrators and other public officials sometimes try out bad ideas on us to see how much we will tolerate without backlash, or at least without getting the press involved.

White House Poet Taught Kids to Sit in Circles and Watch Porn for College Class.  A University of Pennsylvania English course taught by a poet who performed for President Obama at the White House ended up exactly as the professor envisioned it:  college kids watching porn.  "Wasting Time on the Internet," a once-a-week creative writing course taught by Kenneth Goldsmith that required students to stare at a computer screen for three hours completed its first class this spring.  Goldsmith wrote last fall that students could use the three hours to watch porn, and then "use it as the basis for compelling erotica."

Stuff like this can happen here, too.
Italian Families Protest Forced Cross-Dressing of Schoolchildren.  In the northern Italian city of Trieste, parents are in uproar over a taxpayer-funded elementary school program that includes dressing little boys as girls and girls as boys to overcome so-called "gender stereotypes."  Schools are calling the exercise "the game of respect," which purportedly adopts many guidelines from the European standards on sex education, attributed to the World Health Organization.

Wake up and smell the chaos.  If you wondered how things could have gotten this bad, how Americans could be so apathetic to pure evil, look no further than an educational system that was intentionally severed from culture and values by John Dewey and his pedagogical descendants.  When knowledge is valued for its own sake, without any nod to right and wrong, we as a society are essentially giving a loaded gun to a baby.  A case in point surfaced early last week at Encinal High School in Alameda, Calif., where sophomore students were assigned by their teacher to pry into their parents' private possessions to look for condoms or sex toys, then take a "selfie" exhibiting their haul of sexual hardware.  The ulterior motive of turning children against their parents, which communist educator Bill Ayers promoted as long ago as the 1960s, could not be any more transparent.

Texas parents outraged after teacher allegedly orders other students to slap son in class.  Parents of a child at Houston, Texas' Frank Black Middle School are outraged after they say their son was slapped by several students and that their son's teacher gave the order.  Skyler Norman said she was beside herself after her son, 14-year-old Gavin Norman, told her that he was assaulted at school.

Students sue college over forced vaginal exams.  Two college students say they were forced to submit to transvaginal probes as part of their classroom training to learn how to perform the medical procedure.  The details are outlined in a federal lawsuit filed Thursday [5/14/2015] in Orlando against Valencia College and three instructors.  It alleges that medical diagnostic students at Valencia College were forced to submit to the examination of their sexual organs under threat of having their grades reduced or of being blacklisted by future employers.

School freaks out over boys baseball storage shed.  One of the parents knew the owner of a company that made precast one-story buildings.  The company offered to donate the manpower and materials to build the boys a shed. [...] "It cost the booster club zero," Carl told me.  And that was that — until a few months ago.  That's when officials with the Clark County School District showed up at the school and demanded that the storage shed be torn down.  They said it violated Title IX. [...]In other words, for every boy sport there must be a girls alternative.  And in the case of Arbor View High School — if the boys have a storage shed — the girls must have a storage shed.

Ten Most Harmful Books of the 19th and 20th Centuries.  [#5] Democracy and Education (1916): John Dewey, who lived from 1859 until 1952, was a "progressive" philosopher and leading advocate for secular humanism in American life, who taught at the University of Chicago and at Columbia.  He signed the Humanist Manifesto and rejected traditional religion and moral absolutes.  In Democracy and Education, in pompous and opaque prose, he disparaged schooling that focused on traditional character development and endowing children with hard knowledge, and encouraged the teaching of thinking "skills" instead.  His views had great influence on the direction of American education — particularly in public schools — and helped nurture the Clinton generation.

Safety first.  Academia has given us so much for which not to be grateful — identity politics, race/gender studies and sundry unpleasantries. But it has topped itself now with one even better — the right to be treated as something quite fragile, always endangered and almost too precious to live.  Last December, the Boston Globe informed us that "students at Harvard Law School, joining their counterparts at a pair of other leading universities, have asked that final exams be postponed for students who have been 'traumatized' by recent grand jury decisions" in New York and Missouri, explaining "we cannot walk away from our pain."  In England, some female students suggested we move from clapping to hand waving to signal approval, as the sound of applause could be threatening.

Parents protest after learning school hired sleazy teacher.  Enraged parents protested outside PS 186 Castlewood in Bellerose, Queens on Friday [3/20/2015] after learning a teacher found guilty of inappropriate behavior with a student was working as a substitute at the school.  The [New York] Post revealed last July that James Rampulla Jr., 45, then a teacher at nearby Irwin Altman MS 172, gave a 14-year-old male student lavish gifts, sent him 513 text messages — including one saying he loved him — and let the boy drive his car.  "The fact that the DOE brought in a guy with this kind of history to potentially come near kids is infuriating," said Craig Ahlemann, a father of two PS 186 students, age four and six.

Illinois high school principal defends 'black students only' event.  A black high school principal in Oak Park, Illinois, is defending his decision to hold an event for "black students only," so that they could safely discuss race issues without the presence of white people.  Oak Park and River Forest High School Principal Nathaniel Rouse hosted a "Black Lives Matter" event exclusively for black students at the school on Feb. 27, The Chicago Tribune reported.  School officials sent out a news release following the event, after many white students were literally turned away at the door.

Education: Playing Games with Recess.  Education in America will make you crazy.  There is hardly a part of it that is not corrupted by ideology and contaminated by sophistical thinking.  What could be simpler to understand than recess?  When you're talking about little children, you're talking about puppies.  They need to run around until they fall down laughing on the grass.  Exertion to the point of exhaustion — that may be the most important thing they do each day.  Well, if you know anything about our Education Establishment, you know they schemed to get rid of recess.

Monessen Middle School Students Given 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' Puzzles.  The "Fifty Shades of Grey" movie doesn't hit theaters until Friday [2/13/2015], but it's already making waves in an unlikely place, Monessen Middle School in Westmoreland County.  Several students reportedly were given or somehow got their hands on a word search puzzle with words like "bondage," "sensuality," and "submissive," all words relating to the steamy book turned movie.

Never bring  a knife  canned food to a gunfight.
Principal: Let students hurl canned food at intruders.  An Alabama middle school principal wants to stockpile cans of corn and peas in classrooms for students to hurl at possible intruders as a last resort defense.

The Editor says...
Every classroom has a stash of canned food, of course.

Schools Ask Students to be Armed with Canned Food in Case of School Shooting.  An Alabama middle school has devised a new way to protect their students from a potential intruder.  They requested that students bring canned food to school and use it as a weapon if a dangerous intruder confronts them.  W.F. Burns middle school's principal and assistant principal sent a letter home to students asking them to bring an eight ounce can of "corn, beans, peas, etc." they may use "in case an intruder enters their classroom."  The school administration did seem to grasp the bizarre nature of the request, but assured parents that the plan has the ability to work[.]

High School Flier Promotes "Punch a Cop Without Going to Jail" Program.  A flier promoting an after-school youth boxing program was removed by a Northern California high school after residents complained that the "Punch a Cop" theme was inflammatory. [...] Daniel Thigpen, a representative of the Folsom Cordova Unified School District, astonishingly told The Los Angeles Times the fliers were "intended to use humor to continue attracting students to the boxing and fitness program."  The joke fell flat for a number of Folsom residents.

Proposed Minnesota Policy Would Allow Student Athletes to Choose Teams Based on 'Gender Identity'.  Minnesota high schools may soon be affected by a proposed policy that would allow students to participate in sports based on their gender identity rather than their biological sex.  On Dec. 4, the board of directors of the Minnesota State High School League will vote on the policy.

America's Worst University Now Demands To Know Students' Sex Habits Or They Can't Enroll.  Florida Atlantic University has found yet another new and exciting way to demonstrate that it is the worst place in America to attend college. [...] Students have reportedly been blocked from registering for courses unless they answered the invasive questions posed by the public school officials.

Minneapolis Schools Now Racially Segregate Discipline.  In a prima facie violation of the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, the Minneapolis School Board has decided to begin segregating their students into two different categories — white, and everyone else.  If teachers and administrators want to suspend a white student, there will be no questions asked.  But if they dare attempt to suspend a "student of color," the act will be reviewed by the school district superintendent and "her leadership team."

Schools propose: Let boys into girls locker rooms.  If you live in Minnesota, your high-school daughter might soon be showering next to a male after athletic practice if a "transgender" policy being considered by the Minnesota State High School League is approved next month.  And beyond Minnesota? Such a policy could be coming to other states, too, if there is not already one in place.

Victory! Boys born as boys can shower with girls in Kentucky school.  I probably would have missed this story were it not for Maggie Gallagher at The Corner.  It seems that the good people on the appeal board considering a case at Atherton High School (part of the Jefferson County public school system) have determined that you can use the girls' bathrooms, locker room and showers if you say you're a girl.  No physical required.

Fifth-grader is banned from using ChapStick at school because it's considered an 'over-the-counter drug'.  An 11-year-old girl whose lips became so chapped they bled at school is now petitioning the district to let her use lip balm.  Grace Karaffa, a fifth-grader at Stuarts Draft Elementary School in Virginia, has suffered from dry lips for years and and repeatedly her requests for ChapStick have been turned down because the district considers the ointment an 'over-the-counter drug' that require's a doctor's note and must be held by the school nurse.

Army officer denied entry into daughter's school because uniform might 'offend' students.  Rochester, Michigan, was denied entry into his daughter's high school by four members of its security staff, told that his uniform might "offend" some students.  "Before he was allowed in, the security guard stopped him and said sorry you're not allowed in the school.  Security told him men and women in uniform weren't allowed because it may offend another student," Lt. Col. Sherwood Baker's wife, Rachel, told a local Fox affiliate.

Army officer told he cannot enter his daughter's school while wearing a uniform.  Lieutenant Colonel Sherwood Baker says he is just a father who was trying to help his daughter find her way at her new high school.  Lt. Baker has served in the Army for 24 years.  This past week he was told by Rochester Adams high school security that if he wanted to get into the high school with his daughter he was going to have to go home and change his clothes.  Baker's wife, Rachel Ferhadson says, "Before he was allowed in, the security guard stopped him and said sorry your not allowed in the school.  Security told him men and women in uniform weren't allowed because it may offend another student."

And now, final exams for kindergartners. Really.  John Gemmill of Dodge City, Kansas, told me in an e-mail that he spent at least half of the 186 days he teaches a year giving some sort of mandated standardized assessment — with strict rubrics to follow — to kindergartners in his classes last year.  One veteran educator described his granddaughter's Houston kindergarten class as a "sweat shop."  This past spring the interim principal and four teachers at an elementary school in Elwood, N.Y., sent a letter to parents saying the annual year-end kindergarten play was being cancelled so kids could keep working hard to be "college and career ready."  (This really happened.)

Teacher suspended after Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin lesson.  An Alabama teacher was suspended without pay after being accused of having sixth-grade students re-enact the deadly police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and the Trayvon Martin killing in Florida.

Texas principal fired for telling students to speak English.  The Texas principal who was placed on administrative leave and then fired for telling Hispanic students at her middle school that they should speak English in the classroom can now speak freely — the gag order has expired — and says that her request only mirrored what's written in state law.  Amy Lacey was placed on administrative leave in 2013 after she asked via an intercom announcement that Hempstead Middle School students should speak English in the classroom.  She shortly after learned that the school board declined to renew her contract and would be firing her.

Are Public Schools Collecting Too Much Data on Your Kids?  Parents are increasingly voicing concern that public schools are collecting massive amounts of personal data on students, storing it and distributing it to third parties without their consent.  Dawn Sweeney, a Pennsylvania mother, has two children in public schools and home-schools her younger three.  She had planned to enroll them in public schools when they reached seventh grade, as she did with her two oldest.  But because of the data collection, she's now reconsidering.

Isn't this what the PTA is for?
Konocti Unified School District launches new mobile app.  Konocti Unified School District announced that its new mobile app is available for use at the county's largest school district.  Parents will have instant access to their child's academic information from the palm of their hand.  Any time, anywhere, KUSD parents can stay updated on their students' progress.  Community members can download the app to stay informed of school district events and activities.

Thugs Run L.A. Classrooms, Thanks To Obama Suspension Ban.  As we predicted, the Obama regime's anti-suspension policy is backfiring.  Los Angeles teachers complain unsuspended violent kids are intimidating them and effectively ruling their classrooms.

Reading: The Con Continues.  Not much is certain in life, but here are two things you can take to the bank.  If you want a child to learn to read, phonics is the way that works.  Second, you can be sure that our Education Establishment will try to keep phonics at a minimum and force children to memorize the English language one sight-word at a time.  Where reading is concerned, the nonsense never stops.

The Case For Banning Laptops In The Classroom.  I banned laptops in the classroom after it became common practice to carry them to school.  When I created my "electronic etiquette policy" (as I call it in my syllabus), I was acting on a gut feeling based on personal experience.  I'd always figured that, for the kinds of computer-science and math classes that I generally teach, which can have a significant theoretical component, any advantage that might be gained by having a machine at the ready, or available for the primary goal of taking notes, was negligible at best.  We still haven't made it easy to type notation-laden sentences, so the potential benefits were low.  Meanwhile, the temptation for distraction was high.  I know that I have a hard time staying on task when the option to check out at any momentary lull is available; I assumed that this must be true for my students, as well.

Race Matters.  Whether or not you agree with the program, No Child Left Behind was crafted under the apparent assumption that different groups in the U.S. do not have different traits which impact on learning, and all students can and should be able to achieve at the same rate if only the school will do its job. [...] Is the NCLB standard wrong?  Should we no longer try to improve the education of the lowest-performing students?  Are the schools being given an impossible task?  Did the program place too great a burden on schools and not enough on the pupils' families and community?  Should we just hand out high school diplomas based on substantially disparate achievement?

The First Lady's food-fight debacle.  Progressives blame kid-hating Republicans and greedy businesses for the revolt against Mrs. Obama's failed policies.  But the truth is right around the corner in your students' cafeterias.  Districts are losing money.  Discarded food is piling high.  Kids are going off-campus to fill their tummies or just going hungry.  According to the School Nutrition Association, almost half of school-meal programs reported declines in revenue in the 2012-13 school year, and 90 percent said food costs were up.

North Dakota U. Bans Something Truly Ridiculous from Campus.  Fencing is not only an Olympic sport; it is sponsored by more than 30 NCAA colleges and universities.  However, that didn't stop a North Dakota university from banning its fencing club from practicing on campus.  The reason?  Fencing violates the school's "weapons policy."

Kangaroo Courts on Campus?  There seem to be a dangerously large number of people who think that the law exists to give them whatever they want — even when that means denying other people the same rights that they claim for themselves.  Nowhere is this self-centered attitude more common than on college campuses.  And nowhere are such attitudes more encouraged than by the Obama administration's Justice Department, which is threatening colleges that don't handle rape issues the politically correct way — that is, by presuming the accused to be guilty and not letting Constitutional safeguards get in the way.

Overreaching on Campus Rape.  Jezebel seems to think that the Department of Education (DOE) investigations are evidence of a sexual-assault epidemic and insidious "rape culture" plaguing our college campuses.  Actually, the investigations show no such thing.  The DOE has made it clear that a college's investigation "in no way indicates at this stage that the college or university is violating or has violated the law."  What the investigations actually reveal is just the beginning of the messy results of three years of federal overreach into campus rape policies.  Through a series of heavy-handed executive actions, the Obama administration has effectively required universities to serve as investigators and jurors for felony offenses.  By doing so, they have placed universities in an impossible position, created costly bureaucracy, trampled students' due-process rights, and empowered a cadre of hypersensitive, trigger-happy gender warriors on campuses.

Internet in schools means pornography in schools.  I've taken some criticism for saying over and over again in this space, that kids don't belong on the Internet (unsupervised and uncontrolled really), and that classrooms should not have Internet access introduced.  The basic problem is that unfettered Internet access brings bullies and predators to kids.  It also means pornography will just keep popping up, and there's no way to fix that with these uncontrolled environments.  It's just not worth the risks.

Kindergarten show canceled so kids can keep studying to become 'college and career ready.' Really..  This didn't come out of the blue.  Kindergarten (and even preschool) has increasingly become academic — at the expense of things such as recess and the arts — in this era of standardized test-based school reform.  In most states, educators are evaluated in large part on test scores of students (sometimes students they don't have) and on showing that their students are "college and career ready," the mantra of the Obama administration's education initiatives.

Product placement: Brands including Nike, iPods and Barbies appear in exam papers.  The use of well-known brand names in school tests has led to accusations that education boards are making product placement deals.  Nike, Barbie and iPod were among the more famous brands to have appeared in a recent New York Common Core standardized English test taken by more than a million students in grades three to eight.  Other brands included Life Savers and Mug Root Beer.  Outraged parents have demanded an explanation for why specific brand names were used in the tests — with some suggesting they've become little more than just another way of advertising to young children.

The Editor says...
Later in the day, some of the same schools preach against "consumerism," which is what they call capitalism, meaning the dreadful presence of commercial advertising anywhere and everywhere.

El Paso parents say YISD fourth-graders receive inappropriate reading...  Questions about affairs, death and murder were all part of a fourth-grade reading assignment at Pasodale Elementary in the Lower Valley.  One woman who did not want to show her face on camera told KFOX14 her son brought the assignment home because he was attending another tutoring session when his teacher passed it out.  She is concerned other students completed the questions in class, so other parents could not stop them from reading it.

4th Graders Assigned "Inappropriate" Homework on Infidelity and Death.  Parents in El Paso, Texas were outraged over an "inappropriate" homework assignment given to fourth graders at Pasodale Elementary School.  Students were asked to read passages about a wife discovering her husband cheated and a mother finding out her military son was killed.  They then had to answer questions about the adult-themed topics.

Undocumented immigrants as teachers?  Long before Alejandro Fuentes Mena became a fifth grade teacher, he was an undocumented immigrant from Chile.  "I came to the United States when I was four years old," Fuentes Mena said.  In August, he started at the Denver Center for International Studies at Ford Elementary School as part of effort by Denver Public Schools administrators to be the first school district in the nation to actively seek out teachers people who were initially brought to the United States illegally.

Despite Hype, Few Complete Free Online Classes.  Amid breathless media reports that free online university classes will dramatically change education, a new study finds few who enroll complete or even attend the classes.  Of approximately a million people who enrolled in one or several of sixteen Coursera "massive open online courses," or MOOCs, on average only 4 percent completed a course.  Only half viewed at least one lecture video from their course.

Principal fired for Spanish language ban, Hispanic activists seek FBI Investigation.  A principal at a Texas middle school where about half the students are Hispanic in ethnic origin has been fired for reportedly getting on the school intercom and announcing a ban on the use of Spanish in all classrooms.  The incident occurred on Nov. 12 at Hempstead Middle School in Hempstead, a tiny town about 50 miles northwest of Houston.  The principal, Amy Lacey, had been on paid administrative leave since the incident.  School district officials announced at a school board meeting on Monday [3/17/2014] that her contract will not be renewed, reports the Houston Chronicle.

Middle school principal in mucho trouble for Spanish language ban.  Students at a Texas middle school say their principal got on the intercom last month and announced a ban on the use of Spanish in all classrooms.  The incident occurred on Nov. 12 at Hempstead Middle School in Hempstead, a tiny town about 50 miles mostly west of downtown Houston.  The principal who allegedly banned Spanish, Amy Lacey, has since been placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation by the school district, reports local CBS affiliate KHOU.

Principal who told kids not to speak Spanish will lose job.  The Hempstead school board won't renew the contract of a principal who instructed her students not to speak Spanish, in a rapidly-evolving district where more than half of the students, like many Texas schools, are now Hispanic.  Hempstead Middle School Principal Amy Lacey was placed on paid administrative leave in December after reportedly announcing, via intercom, that students were not to speak Spanish on the school's campus.

Revolt Against the Testing Tyrants.  To be clear:  I'm not against all standardized academic tests.  My kids excel on tests.  The problem is that there are too [...] many of these top-down assessments, measuring who knows what, using our children as guinea pigs and cash cows.  College-bound students in Orange County, Fla., for example, now take a total of 234 standardized diagnostic, benchmark and achievement tests from kindergarten through 12th grade.

How Every Part of American Life Became a Police Matter.  Though it's a national phenomenon, Mississippi currently leads the way in turning school behavior into a police issue.  The Hospitality State has imposed felony charges on schoolchildren for "crimes" like throwing peanuts on a bus.  Wearing the wrong color belt to school got one child handcuffed to a railing for several hours.  All of this goes under the rubric of "zero-tolerance" discipline, which turns out to be just another form of violence legally imported into schools.  Despite a long-term drop in youth crime, the carceral style of education remains in style.  Metal detectors — a horrible way for any child to start the day — are installed in ever more schools, even those with sterling disciplinary records, despite the demonstrable fact that such scanners provide no guarantee against shootings and stabbings.

Changing the SAT for 'Social Justice'Question:  What test was created to eliminate the advantages that wealthy families used to influence and advance their children's educational cause?  Answer:  The Scholastic Achievement Test (SAT):  a test created to end the discrimination and aristocracy in college admissions.  It leveled the playing field by relying on an empirical test score that was valid, aligned with college success, and incapable of determining color, race, or socio-economic condition.  Problem:  According to Zachary Goldfarb in the Washington Post, the College Board is overhauling the SAT to "level the playing field" for high school students from a wider range of families.

School forces half-naked, sopping wet student to stand outside, frostbite results.  A Minnesota public high school was so committed to obeying its fire drill policy to the exact letter of the law that it forced a female student — dressed only in a swimsuit, and sopping wet — to stand outside in the freezing cold for ten minutes.  As a result, she suffered frostbite.  Administrators wouldn't let the student retrieve her clothes, sit in a car or wait inside another building, according to WCCO.  The trouble began when a small science experiment triggered the fire alarm at Como Park Senior High School in St. Paul, Minnesota.  Fourteen-year-old Kayona Hagen-Tietz was swimming in the school pool for health class at the time.  Her clothes were in her locker, and a teacher told her that there was no time for her to change.  Hagen-Tietz was rushed outside — still wet and dressed in only [a] swimsuit.  It was 5 degrees below zero in St. Paul that day.  With the windchill, it was 25 degrees below zero.

The Editor says...
Yes, I can hear you saying, "That's just an isolated incident."  Sure it is — just as all the ridiculous zero tolerance cases are isolated and unrelated — only they're not.  In every public school I've ever seen, the rules are the rules and the "teachers" and administration never depart from the rules, for two reasons:  (1)  they can never be perceived as showing favoritism, because of the civil rights activists, and (2)  every departure from the rules opens up the threat of civil litigation.  The schools are in the condition they're in because of left-wing liberalism.

Betsy Ross, Meet Cinco de Mayo.  Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, Calif., set out to celebrate Cinco de Mayo in 2010 in a "spirit of cultural appreciation."  It didn't work out that way.  Some students decided they wanted to celebrate by wearing shirts with the American flag.  Other students objected.  A student warned an administrator she thought there would be problems.  Fearing for the safety of students wearing red, white and blue, administrators asked those teens to turn their shirts inside out or go home under an excused leave.  Three students — minors known as M.D., D.M. and D.G. — have sued the district for violating their rights to free speech and equal protection.

'Scream rooms' in schools are psychological sadism.  In many states throughout the U.S., teachers and school administers will lock students in small spaces called "scream rooms" to discipline them for misbehaving during the school day.  The infractions can be relatively minor — such as swearing too many times or shooting spitballs.  And students are sometimes kept in seclusion this way for hours.  In one reported case, a student was not allowed out even to go to the bathroom and subsequently urinated on the floor.  Scream rooms aren't just for high school bullies or tough athletes with attitudes either.  First graders can be confined in them, as well as kindergarteners.  Children sometimes weep and struggle to get away before being locked up.

Obama Administration Takes Groupthink To Absurd Lengths: School Discipline Rates Must Be "Proportionate".  [I]n January, [the Obama] administration — specifically the Departments of Justice and Education — [sent out] a "guidance" letter that demands a group equality approach to student discipline in America's public schools.  If federal bureaucrats suspect that there's any racial disproportionality in the punishments meted out for misbehavior in school, they will descend on the school's administrators.  Unless those officials can then prove to the government's satisfaction (good luck!) that any differential in rates of punishment by race or ethnic group is "necessary," the school will face the loss of federal funds and costly mandates for diversity training.  Most school officials would just as soon have a root canal as face a plague of lawyers from the Justice and Education Departments.  To avoid that possibility, they will probably take the safe route and adopt a de facto racial quota system for student discipline.

Parent of dying boy has to prove her son can't take standardized test.  Andrea Rediske's 11-year-old son Ethan, is dying.  Last year, Ethan, who was born with brain damage, has cerebral palsy and is blind, was forced to take a version of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test over the space of two weeks last year because the state of Florida required that every student take one.  His mom has to prove that Ethan, now in a morphine coma, is in no condition to take another test this year.

The Ritzy Student Bash At The School With No Books.  Their school provides them no textbooks, no supplies or art classes.  But here are the underprivileged pupils of Far Rockaway's PS 106 — dressed to the nines in tuxes and gowns for an elaborate, wedding-themed bash they must pay to attend at the insistence of their do-nothing principal.

All wrong — in California, girls can use urinals in the boys' restroom.  As of January 1, students in California public schools have been able to choose whether to use the boys' rest room or girls' rest room, as well as the girls' locker room or boys' locker room, based on whether they feel female or male, not whether they are anatomically female or male.  That's right:  Governor Jerry Brown, of California, signed a bill that took effect January 1 that tells kids from kindergarten on that they should decide whether they believe their gender identity is and act, accordingly.

Leftists Committed To Getting Their Grubby Paws On Your Kids Early.  Progressives will trot out study after study to prove to you that your child will never learn to write his name without sticking the pen in his eye if you don't get him to a preschool STAT.  (One wonders how all of the scientists who got us to the moon were able to do so without the benefit of having gone to preschool.)  It's all garbage, of course, but it's purposeful garbage.  The sooner they can get your kids out of your hands and into those of a government employee who will say anything for a pension, the better.

Higher education itself might not be such a good idea.
The Outlaw Campus.  Colleges have gone rogue and become virtual outlaw institutions.  Graduates owe an aggregate of $1 trillion in student debt, borrowed at interest rates far above home-mortgage rates — all on the principle that universities could charge as much as they liked, given that students could borrow as much as they needed in federally guaranteed loans.  Few graduates have the ability to pay back the principal; they are simply paying the compounded interest.

Oppression in Higher Education: Hilarious and sad.  There is so much entertaining, self-destructive, and pathetic overthinking going on here that one barely knows where to begin.

Our Kids: Victims of the Rough Grasp of the State.  Wake up, Mom and Dad:  your government has its paws all over your children during school hours — always figuratively, and too often literally.  If parents are taken out of the education equation completely, something will fill the vacuum.  And that something is bound to be the police state.

Hernando teacher suspended after requiring fourth-grader to participate in Pledge of Allegiance.  The issue is one that has cropped up in school districts across the country for decades:  Do students have a right to opt out of the Pledge of Allegiance?  In the Hernando County School District, the answer is clear:  Yes.

ENDA Would Grant Transgender Rights to Elementary School Teachers.  It's hard to imagine that in the year 2013 that any business in the country could fire someone simply because he is gay without facing a major backlash and boycotts.  So does the country now need a new federal law prohibiting such discrimination by private businesses?

Kid Cages at School Bus Stops Spark Outrage.  Environmentalists have galvanized behind a movement to resurrect wolf populations in rural America. [...] In Catron County, New Mexico, aggressive Mexican gray wolves are terrorizing residents.  Here wolves are killing pets in front yards in broad daylight, and forcing parents to stand guard when children play outside.  The threat has become so ominous the local school district has decided to place wolf shelters (kid cages) at school bus stops to protect school children from wolves while they wait for the bus or parents.  These wolf proof cages, constructed from plywood and wire, are designed to prevent wolves from taking a child.  The absurdity of this scenario is mind-numbing.  What kind of society accepts the idea of children in cages while wolves are free to roam where they choose?

Teachers' unions fight bill that would bar sex offenders from schools.  A bipartisan bill that would stop convicted sex offenders from working in schools has been passed by the House but is running into a foe as it heads to the Senate:  major teachers' unions like the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers.  Kyle Olson, with the Education Action Group Foundation told Megyn Kelly Wednesday night [10/23/2013] on "The Kelly File" that the unions' objection to the bill proves "unions are out to protect the adults... they are not out for the interests of the children."  "We should have zero tolerance for issues like this," Olson said.

Schools Shutting Out Some Top Students from AP Courses.  The Los Angeles Times reported last week that some high schools have made advanced placement (AP) courses open to all students regardless of ability.  If an AP class is oversubscribed, the schools use a random lottery to determine who gets in, meaning some of the best students can be shut out.  This is a really bad idea. [...] These classes should be reserved for students who have demonstrated their potential to do high-level work.  And if there is a limit on how large the classes can be, priority should be given to the students who are most likely to benefit.

Faculty: Sexual Harassment Policy Approved by Feds 'Orwellian'.  Of special concern is a requirement that those professors who fail to complete training are being reported to the federal government.  Faculty members questioned exactly what information the university felt obliged to report to the DOJ and asked how the agency plans to use the information in a letter to University of Montana President Royce Engstrom, the Missoulian reported last week.

The Bizarre, Misguided Campaign to Get Rid of Single-Sex Classrooms.  Wealthy families have always had the option of sending their children to all-male or all-female schools, but parents of modest means have rarely had that choice.  That changed in 2001, when four female senators sponsored legislation that sanctioned single-sex classes and academies in public schools.  Today, there are more than 500 public schools that offer single-sex classes and 116 public all-girl or all-boy academies.  Many are in struggling urban neighborhoods and many have proven to be hugely successful.

Arizona police officer asked not to wear uniform at daughter's school.  A police officer who dropped off his daughter at her Phoenix elementary school was asked by the school's principal not to wear his uniform to the school because other parents were concerned that he was carrying a gun, MyFoxPhoenix.com reported.  Scott Urkov is a police officer for the Coolidge Police Department.  The department told him not to comment to media inquiries, but immediately after he received the no-uniform request, he posted on Facebook.

Anti-bullying laws: A mom dares to critique the social trend.  Anti-bullying laws have proliferated in the past decade:  But some people are troubled at what lawmakers and advocates almost always portray as a positive movement against bullying that may or may not have the desired effect.

Bully for You; Bully for Me.  Has bullying become more pervasive and aggressive in recent years?  Or is it just reported more often than it used to be?  Is something serious going on, or is it a manufactured crisis?

Obama rewrote federal education law as Congress napped.  President George W. Bush's No Child Left Behind education law was the largest expansion of federal involvement in elementary education since President Johnson's Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965.  And the Bush measure was unpopular from day one. [...] NCLB required all public schools to establish Adequate Yearly Progress standards and administer statewide standardized tests to make sure those standards were being met.

Who pays if L.A. Unified students lose or breaks Ipad?  Another issue in the Los Angeles Unified School District's $1-billion effort to equip every student with an iPad surfaced Wednesday:  Are parents liable if their child breaks or loses the tablet?  The question emerged after revelations that 300 or so students at Roosevelt High School skirted security measures on the device and visited unauthorized websites.  In response, the district suspended all home use of the Apple tablets, which have gone out to about two dozen schools so far.

The Editor says...
There is a big difference between bypassing a filter and breaking the computer.  And if high school kids can defeat the security features, the school district needs to get some new IT people.

California college bars student from handing out copies of Constitution.  The Constitution guarantees the right to free speech, but don't try to pass out copies of it at Modesto Junior College in California.  A student at the school who tried to pass out pocket-size pamphlets of the very document that memorializes our rights got shut down on Sept. 17 — a date also known as Constitution Day.

Parent Files Complaint Against Hartford Schools Over Slavery Re-Enactment On Field Trip.  A Farmington parent has filed a human rights complaint against the Hartford school system following a magnet school field trip last fall in which students participated in a slavery re-enactment that included the use of racial slurs.  Sandra Baker said Thursday [9/19/2013] that her daughter, who is African American, and fellow classmates at Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy were essentially "terrorized" during the nighttime Underground Railroad exercise that was part of a field trip to Nature's Classroom in Charlton, Mass.

Should Students Use a Laptop in Class?  Let's start with the million-dollar question:  May computers (laptops, tablets, smartphones) be used in class?  Some instructors are as permissive as parents who let you set your own curfew.  Others are more controlling and believe that having your phone on means your brain is off and that relying on Google for answers results in a digital lobotomy.  Professors are united, though, in the conviction that the classroom is a communal space and that students share the responsibility for ensuring that nobody abuses it by diminishing opportunities to learn.

ObamaCare for Everything.  One attribute that sets the U.S. higher education system apart from any in the world is the diversity of its 4,495 degree-granting institutions — big, small, private, public, religious.  Under this plan, that historic diversity would melt beneath conformance.  The Obama plan says it will increase the number of college graduates and contain tuition costs by "rewarding states that are willing to systematically change their higher education policies and practices."

Educational Collapse MestastacizesConstructivism prevents teachers from teaching.  Instead, students are told to find information for themselves. [...] Cooperative Learning mandates that students are always cocooned inside a little group. [...] This is good training for socialism, but not for serious independent work.  Prior Knowledge forces the teacher to waste time assessing what each child already knows, instead of simply teaching all children what they now need to know. [...] Whole Word, the biggest blunder in American education, requires that children memorize English words as graphic designs.  This is the foolish approach that Rudolf Flesch exposed in his famous 1955 book.

California lawmaker pulls son from class over transgender law.  A Republican state lawmaker says a new California law allowing transgender students to choose which restroom and locker room they use is part of the reason at least one of his sons will not return to his local public school this fall.

Don't depend on cowards for advice on self-defense.
'Run and hide' is Obama administration's clever plan for next school shooting.  In response to the Newtown, Conn. massacre and a host of school shootings in recent years, the Obama administration released a 67-page report on emergency planning this summer that includes several pages advising educators on how to manage "an active shooter situation."  The U.S. Department of Education's "live-shooter" section doesn't recommend that schools arm teachers or employ armed guards.  It doesn't even advise schools to add door locks for classrooms.

Why Did a Tennessee Grade School Ban Pork?  A Tennessee elementary school banned students from eating ham sandwiches, BLT's and anything else made with pork, but eventually lifted the ban after parents complained. [...] "No meats containing pork," read the memorandum.  "Starting Monday, August 12, 2013 your child must provide their own snack from the above approved snack list." Kids could nosh on raw vegetables without dips or sauces, fresh fruit, crackers, pretzels, and popcorn — but no ribs or pork rinds.

The Editor says...
The ban was quickly lifted, but don't ever forget that they tried to impose Islamic (halal) restrictions on food that the kids were bringing from their homes!  Even the Food Police have never been so brazen, but the Muslims are, and I suspect that's who is at the root of this ill-conceived order.

Obama pushes ambitious Internet access plan for schools.  President Obama liked the idea laid out in a memo from his staff:  an ambitious plan to expand high-speed Internet access in schools that would allow students to use digital notebooks and teachers to customize lessons like never before.  Better yet, the president would not need Congress to approve it.  White House senior advisers have described the little-known proposal, announced earlier this summer under the name ConnectEd, as one of the biggest potential achievements of Obama's second term.

Bias alert!
How else would "White House senior advisers" describe an Obama proposal to the press?

Turning public schools into forts.  As surveillance cameras, metal detectors, police patrols, zero-tolerance policies, lockdowns, drug-sniffing dogs and strip searches become the norm in elementary, middle and high schools across the nation, America is on a fast track to raising up an Orwellian generation — one populated by compliant citizens accustomed to living in a police state and who march in lockstep to the dictates of the government.

DOJ ripped for making transgender restroom use new front in civil rights battle.  The U.S. Department of Justice's latest cause — fighting for a transgendered California ninth-grader's right to use the boy's room at school — has conservative groups wondering just how far Washington will go in the name of civil rights.  The student was born a girl but "has identified as a boy from a young age," according to the Department of Justice, which reached a settlement with the public school district in Arcadia, an affluent LA suburb.  Under the deal, the district must not only change the student's restroom privileges and make similar accommodations on overnight trips.  It also must institute a host of measures to ensure transgender students are treated as whatever gender they consider themselves to be.

Arizona Student Suspended for Asking that Classes be Taught in English.  A 50-year-old community college student in Arizona has been suspended — her crime:  asking that class discussions be conducted in English. [...] It's a twisted day in America when a student has "ineffective communications skills" because she speaks English.  Foreign language skills are beneficial for workers in a variety of fields, but to punish a community college student for lacking Spanish proficiency is obviously absurd.

Michelle Obama Gives a Nod to 'Walking School Buses'.  First Lady Michelle Obama is promoting walking to school as part of her anti-obesity campaign.  In remarks to mayors gathered at the White House last week, the first lady singled out Knox County, Tenn., which — inspired by Mrs. Obama's "Let's Move!" campaign — has created a bike-share program and something called a "walking school bus." [...] A "walking school bus" is a group of children who walk to school with adult chaperones.

The Editor says...
The Obama regime is now dispensing lipstick for pigs.  This used to be called, "walking to school," and now we will all feel better because the kids can pretend they're in a "walking school bus."

Calif. lawmakers pass K-12 transgender-rights bill.  California lawmakers approved a bill Wednesday [7/3/2013] that would require public K-12 schools to let transgender students choose which restrooms they use and which school teams they join based on their gender identity instead of their chromosomes.

The Editor says...
Whenever schools allow the kids to make decisions about their rules, trouble is inevitable in the chort term, and chaos in the long run.  The same would be true if the inmates were allowed to make policy decisions in prisons.  Where liberals rule, common sense does not.

California is about to pass a law requiring bathroom, locker room access regardless of gender.  Mere ownership of a penis or a vagina will no longer limit California students in their decisions concerning which bathrooms and locker rooms to use, or which sports teams to join.  Under a proposed law that has passed the state legislature and now awaits the signature of Gov. Jerry Brown, students in California will be able to make such choices based on their perceived gender identities, CNN reports.  Assembly Bill 1266 aims to extend the rights of transgender students.

Shape-shifters are Changing America.  Mostly unbeknownst to most of us mortals, a modern day shape-shifter can become the opposite of the sex he or she was born as, transforming into a man or woman in an instant.  It doesn't matter if the biological assignment given at birth remains.  Proclamation of one's sexual identity is enough.  One's gender can be established by fiat.  Even children may change sex just by proclamation, as the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary School guidelines affirm, stating that even if a child physiologically resembles a boy in every respect, but decides to be a girl, his new identity is to be acknowledged as the "real" one.  Just to be perfectly clear, lest anyone accuse the district of discrimination, it is not necessary to declare one's self male or female at all.  A student can essentially check the box "Neither."

Grooming the New Totalitarians.  America's younger generations are being groomed for totalitarianism.  We begin In Polk County, Florida, where students at an elementary school, a middle school and a high school had their irises scanned — without parental permission — as part of what officials are characterizing as a "student safety" program.

Only if grandma is under 30 and has a job.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan: Pre-School is Better Than Grandma.  Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Wednesday [6/12/2013] that "cultural hesitation" makes it more difficult for some Hispanic parents to want to enroll their children in public pre-school programs because of their preference for family and friends.

Confirmed: Polk County, FL schools conducted iris scans on students without permission.  Florida parents are right to be outraged at the outrageous privacy violations that took place late last week in at least 3 Polk County, Florida schools.

Who's tracking your children?  The school year may be over for most American students, but parents must remain as vigilant as ever when it comes to protecting their children's privacy.  Look no further than the shocking, invasive conduct of the Polk County, Fla., educational district last week.  It's a surveillance-state sign of the times.

Taking away the Fifth.  Sometimes the best lessons are the ones that aren't planned.  High school students in Batavia, Ill., recently received real-world training in the Bill of Rights unlike anything found in a textbook.  Social studies teacher John Dryden landed in hot water when he mentioned the Fifth Amendment to his students as he, under orders, passed out an intrusive questionnaire.  The survey asked detailed questions about drug and alcohol use so that administrators could identify students with potential emotional problems.  Mr. Dryden simply reminded the children that they didn't have to incriminate themselves with their answers.

Teacher's Fifth Amendment advice to students gets him in trouble.  An Illinois Social Studies teacher faces disciplinary action for reminding his students of their Fifth Amendment rights when filling out a school survey on behavior, according to the Daily Herald.

Update:
Batavia teacher in 5th Amendment debate ordered to curb remarks.  The Batavia High School teacher at the center of a recent controversy over his recommendation to students about a school survey was warned to keep his opinions about all future district initiatives to himself or risk losing his job.  Calling his actions "inappropriate and unprofessional," the school board officially reprimanded John Dryden, a 20-year teacher at the high school, at a recent school board meeting after dozens turned out to support him.

The use of textbooks as propaganda tools:
Michelle O Wants Textbooks to 'Swap Cupcakes for Apples' in Math Problems.  First Lady Michelle Obama's "Let's Move!" initiative is praising textbook publishers for "swapping out cupcakes for apples in math problems," in a campaign to incorporate health information into the learning resources for kids.  "Today at the White House, we celebrated a group of educational publishers on their development of voluntary guidance to incorporate health information into textbooks and other learning materials," Let's Move! said in a blog post entitled, "Cookies 2 Carrots," on Wednesday.

Parents expected to pay to see school curriculum in Texas?  A controversial school curriculum management system in Texas that once included a description of the Boston Tea Party as terror, and has referenced Islamic terrorists as freedom fighters, now has been found to be trying to charge parents hundreds of dollars to see the instructional materials being used by their own children, officials said.  However, under Texas Education Code Chapter 26, all parents have the undisputed right to see any and all instructional materials used in state classrooms.

Teacher Sues School over Suspension for 'Weapons' Charge: Showing Students Garden Tools.  Attorneys for The Rutherford Institute have filed a civil rights lawsuit against a Chicago public school district on behalf of a second-grade teacher who was suspended after he displayed garden-variety tools such as wrenches, pliers and screwdrivers in his classroom as part of a "tool discussion" in his class. [...] Bartlett was subsequently penalized with a four-day suspension without pay — charged with possessing, carrying, storing or using a weapon.

The Editor says...
The teacher must not have known about the "Screwdriver Free Zone" signs in front of the school.

The Rehabilitation of New Left Terrorists.  This week, the rehabilitation of the most extreme of the New Left groups — The Weather Underground — entered a new stage.  Yesterday [4/4/2013], The New York Post revealed that convicted felon Kathy Boudin — who was released from jail a decade ago after serving 22 years for her role as getaway driver in a deadly 1981 Brinks truck robbery — was given the position of Adjunct Professor at Columbia University's School of Social Work.  At the same time, Boudin was also(!) given a position held concurrently at New York University, where she was appointed Sheinberg Scholar-in-Residence.

Parents outraged that Mass. kids were denied lunch.  As many as 25 students at a Massachusetts school were denied lunch this week — with at least some forced to dump their food in the garbage — because they couldn't pay, school officials and parents said.

School Bans the Word 'Easter'.  Boys and girls at an Alabama elementary school will still get to hunt for eggs — but they can't call them 'Easter Eggs' have the principal banished the word for the sake of religious diversity.  "We had in the past a parent to question us about some of the things we do here at school," said Heritage Elementary School principal Lydia Davenport.  "So we're just trying to make sure we respect and honor everybody's differences."

The Abolition of Sex.  The Massachusetts public school system has taken the tired mantra "You can be whatever you want to be" to new heights of absurdity.  It is now possible for any student to declare what his sex is regardless of whether it is the biological opposite of what she was born as.  The new transgender manifesto, which includes punishments and counseling for students who object to the idea of changing one's sex by fiat, can be found here.  The basic premise is that a student has the right to decide what sex he or she is, and the school is required to support the child's self-proclaimed identity in every respect.

Professor Makes Students "Stomp on Jesus".  A Florida Atlantic University student said he was punished after he refused a professor's directive to stomp on a piece of paper with the word "Jesus" written on it.  The university, meanwhile, is defending the assignment as a lesson in debate.  "I'm not going to be sitting in a class having my religious rights desecrated," student Ryan Rotela told television station WPEC.  "I truly see this as I'm being punished."

'Jesus Stomping' Professor is Democrat Party Vice-Chairman in Palm Beach County, FL.  Just in time for Holy Week are many reports about this controversial incident involving a local college professor at Florida Atlantic University in Davie, Florida making his students literally stomp on paper after they were instructed to write the name Jesus on it.  However national media, while reporting on this incident, neglected to include the fact that the professor is also vice-chairman of the Palm Beach County Democratic Party as reported today by a popular and influential local business/political web site called Biz Pac Review.

Media fail: Stomp Jesus FAU professor is a Dem. Party official.  Florida Atlantic University professor Deandre Poole instructed his intercultural communications class earlier this month to write the name "Jesus" on a piece of paper, then drop it on the floor and stomp on it.  One student, a devout Mormon, was so so disturbed by the exercise that he complained to school officials, saying Poole had offended his religious convictions.  The school responded by suspending the student from the class.

University Apologizes for "Stomping on Jesus" Assignment.  Florida Atlantic University has issued an apology for a classroom assignment that involving students writing the name "Jesus" on a sheet of paper and then stomping on the paper.  The university also said the lesson will never again be used.

The Editor says...
Let's try the same assignment with "Mohammed" or "Martin Luther King" or even "Obama" on the paper and see what happens.

University Takes Action to Punish Student.  A Florida Atlantic University student who filed a complaint against his professor after he was ordered to stomp on the name of Jesus has been brought up on academic charges by the school and may no longer attend class, according to documents obtained by Fox News.

Update:
University Bows to National Outrage, Won't Punish Student Who Refused to Stomp Jesus.  Florida Atlantic University has issued a formal apology to a student that was facing academic charges after he complained about a professor who ordered the class to write the name "Jesus" and then stomp on the pieces of paper.  Ryan Rotela, a student at FAU, was accused of violating the student code of conduct after he reported his instructor to university administrators.  He was removed from the class, ordered not to contact fellow students, and was facing possible suspension or expulsion — pending the outcome of a student hearing.

More N.J. schools turning to advertising to make ends meet.  The electronic sign in front of Linden High School may begin showing ads along with school messages, a deal Linden officials were told could bring in $100,000 a year.  The North Hunterdon-Voorhees High School District is exploring "corporate partnership opportunities" that could paste company logos on everything from high school football scoreboards to library walls.

Education Gone Berserk.  During my 30 years of teaching, I have experienced plenty of irrational teaching methods and behaviors coming from liberal teachers and administrators bent on controlling every move that students or faculty members made.  Every year administrators added extra pages to the official code of conduct.  These were deliberate steps to restrict freedom and to punish real or potential bad behaviors.  Needless to say, lawyers were busy defending ridiculous claims and actions that a person with common sense would have known to avoid or ignore.  But liberals like to micromanage everything and everybody.

Rising special ed cases are huge cost to Minnesota schools.  Every school day, the boy, who has autism and doesn't speak, came to the barren cell built only for him.  Two adults spent all their time teaching him to communicate.  The price?  $153,000 for a year of instruction, nearly 20 times what's spent on a student without special needs.  "The costs are staggering," said Connie Hayes, superintendent of the public school district that built the classroom.  A decade ago, the boy would have been institutionalized.  Today, he's sent to public school.

The Editor says...
Does it improve the quality of the other students' education to "mainstream" violent, autistic children?  No, especially since the rest of the student body is in another part of the building.  The only reason to accomodate one-in-a-million cases like this is money:  The school districts are reimbursed (by the federal government, so it doesn't really cost anybody anything) in proportion to the number of warm bodies in attendance, and I suspect there is a financial incentive to take in especially difficult cases.

The feverish de-legitimization of personal self-defense .  Three Florida high school students disarmed another student who was armed with a loaded pistol while riding home on a school bus.  The school district then promptly suspended all three students for being involved in an "incident" with a weapon.  One of the suspended students asked, "How are they going to suspend me for doing the right thing?"

Welcome To Your 21st Century Global Educational System.  We are entering into a new era of education with a global curriculum designed by the United Nations that will be implemented not just in developing countries, but right here in the United States.  Once our daycares are forced to shut their doors because of purposeful and costly over-regulation by state and federal governments, babies will be forced into the 0-12 educational system and the educational leaders will have accomplished their goal of compulsory education for even the youngest in our society.  Once all children are herded into the public school system (because homeschooling will no longer be allowed), this is what our newly transformed educational system will look like.

There are a hundred compelling reasons for removing your children and grandchildren from the public schools.
American Education: Rotting the Country from the Inside.  [Scroll down]  So it is my conclusion that what the WU failed to accomplish when they went underground and began their strategic sabotage is now being accomplished through the educational system and the political means that they have gained by supporting such people as Barack Obama and his Chicago supporters.  I tell people today that we are losing our freedoms because of the attacks that emerge from the left and are targeted on all of our basic societal organizations.  God is eliminated from the classroom; the history of our country is no longer being taught, but rather a revised edition which depicts our people and our nation as enemies of the world and of all that is good and right.  This includes church, religion, veterans, educational institutions, and any organization that supports the greatness of our country and the strength of its institutions.

Ten shocking lessons a huge Texas conglomerate has foisted on public school students.  Most — though not all — of the critics of CSCOPE are politically conservative.  They charge that the controversial curriculum is a radical, backdoor way for progressives to circumvent both the Texas legislative process and the desires of local school boards and communities.  They also charge that the creators of the curriculum operate secretly and do not make it easy for parents or even school board members to see the material.

Parents Upset Over Tutoring Program That Excluded Whites.  A Colorado school principal is apologizing after he mailed parents a letter informing them that an after-school tutoring program was for non-whites only.  Andre Pearson, the principal at Mission Viejo Elementary School in Aurora, also left a voice mail message confirming that the program excluded whites.

Elementary school bans white kids from tutoring.  An elementary school principal in the Denver suburbs told parents that white children would be excluded from an after-school tutoring initiative.  Andre C. Pearson, the principal at Mission Viejo Elementary in Aurora, Colorado sent letters home to parents informing them that only students of color are eligible for the program, KJCT, the local ABC affiliate, reports.

Black principal bans white children from after school tutoring program.  This is an amazing story.  In short, Andrea Pearson, Mission Viejo Elementary school principal in Colorado sent a letter home with students that informed the parents of an after school tutoring program for students of color only — no white kids allowed.

Securing America's schools.  Both on the left and the right there are calls for enhancing security in schools in the wake of the Dec. 14 mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.  Sen. Barbara Boxer, California Democrat, wants to deploy the National Guard to protect our classrooms.  Her proposal included the establishment of a $50 million grant program that would help schools buy more metal detectors, surveillance cameras and other high-tech security measures.  Turning America's schools into fortresses isn't the solution.

Washington University holds porn star panel in main university chapel.  At Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, students are perpetually lamenting the fact that their excellent Midwestern school isn't mentioned more often with Ivy-caliber powerhouses.  Well, this story probably isn't going to help.

Gun Free Zones.  By making schools a "gun free zone", you automatically disarm all law abiding citizens at those locations.  This is tantamount to placing a sign on the front of the building inviting criminals and mentally deranged persons to come shoot up the place.  "Come on in.  We're all unarmed, by law.  We won't interfere with your mayhem."

Officials Defend Decision to Name School After Murderer.  A California school district is defending its decision to name a new elementary school after an infamous murderer — by calling him a hero and a role model to children.  The decision has infuriated many parents and law enforcemetn [sic] officers.  The Alisal Union School District in Salinas agreed to name the new school in honor of Tiburcio Vasquez — who was eventually hanged for killing at least two people in the nineteenth century.

The Strategic Concentration of Modern Children.  What any ruling class wants is to get children away from the influence of their parents.  And what better way could there be to concentrate and homogenize children than in government child custodial facilities?  It is curious that the modern rampage shootings started around the time that the best and brightest decided that the big youth problem was the education of girls — even though it stands to reason that boys are the ones who need to be socialized away from their dawn-raid instincts, and always will.

RFID used to track school students.  A court challenge has delayed plans to expel a Texan student for refusing to wear a radio tag that tracked her movements.  Religious reasons led Andrea Hernandez to stop wearing the tag that revealed where she was on her school campus.  The tags were introduced to track students and help tighten control of school funding.

More on suspended student refusing to wear tracking device.  The district attempted to paint this "students-as-livestock/prisoners" effort as being there for the safety of students and staff.  But underneath all the "safety" talk was a large pile of money that the school district hoped to pocket.  The so-called "Student Locator" project Texas' Northside Independent School District was implementing put school officials within handout distance of nearly $1.7 million in state government funds.

San Antonio Officials Re-Admit Expelled High School Student After Ending RFID Tracking Program.  School officials with the Northside Independent School District have agreed to re-admit Andrea Hernandez to John Jay High School's Science and Engineering Academy.  Hernandez, who will resume her studies at John Jay as a high school junior when school convenes on Monday, Aug. 26, was expelled from the magnet school program after raising religious freedom and privacy objections to NISD's "Student Locator Project," which relied on RFID tracking badges to enable school officials to track students' location on school property.

School Administrator Brushes Off 'Constitutional Niceties' Like Fifth Amendment Rights For Students.  For many school administrators, the default mode is to limit the rights of students while enforcing very broadly-worded policies.  The default mode may start shifting, though, as more courts are reminding administrators that, while students' rights may be more constrained than those of adults, they're not nonexistent.  Recently, a court reminded a Minnesota school district that demanding a student's Facebook password was a violation of her First and Fourth Amendment rights.

Electronic Versions Of Textbooks Spy On Students As They Read Them.  The rapid uptake of ebooks by the public shows that there is a widespread recognition of their advantages.  This would be good news for the publishing industry as it faces the transition from analog to digital formats, were it not for the fact that some publishers keep finding new ways of making ebooks less attractive than physical versions.  Here's the latest idea:  electronic versions of textbooks that spy on students as they read them.

Pro-Family Group Warns of Agenda Behind SPLC's "Mix It Up" Day.  The American Family Association (AFA) is warning parents about an upcoming "entry level" diversity program being promoted by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) under its "Teaching Tolerance" project.  On October 30, at over 2,000 schools across the nation, the SPLC will activate its annual Mix It up at Lunch Day, which it describes as a campaign, established a decade ago, that "encourages students to identify, question and cross social boundaries."

Minnesota Schools Close So Teachers Can Play with Dolls, Learn About Teaching Islam.  Each year, Minnesota government schools close for two days (just before the weekend, of course) so teachers' union members can gather at a conference organized by their union. [...] The union describes it this way:  "Used around the world, persona dolls are lifelike dolls with personalities and stories you create.  The dolls become members of your classroom community and children learn by empathizing with the dolls and giving them heartfelt advice on the same kinds of situations they struggle with daily in the classroom and on the playground."  That's weird.  Teachers are taking time away from the classroom to learn how to play with dolls?  The conference also includes a workshop on how to teach about Islam.

Texas school district to require students to wear RFID chip whil [sic] on campus.  A school district in San Antonio, Texas is requiring middle and high school students to wear a "tracking" chip while on campus.  And not just a passive RFID (Radio-frequency identification) chip, these second generation RFID chips include a battery that transmits a radio signal for constant location monitoring of the students.  District spokesman Pascual Gonzalez said, "Chip readers on campuses and on school buses can detect a student's location but can't track them once they leave school property.  Only authorized administrative officials will have access to the information."

The Editor says...
First of all, the story above defies logic: If the school buses have RFID tag readers, "but can't track them once they leave school property", that means the buses never leave school property.  Not likely.  Second, active RFID tags can be tracked wherever there is a compatible reader.  The reader can be the property of the school district, or the police, an identity thief, a stalker, or a child molester.

Wear radio chip or leave, school tells students.  Brushing aside privacy concerns by parents and civil rights activists, a Texas school district has gone live with a controversial program requiring all students to wear a locator radio chip that will enable officials to track their every move — or face expulsion.  At the beginning of the school year students at John Jay High School and Anson Jones Middle School within the Northside Independent School District were told their old student ID badges were no longer valid.  During registration they were required to obtain new badges containing a radio frequency identification tracker chip.

Student Expelled for Refusing Location Tracking RFID Badge.  After months of protesting a policy requiring high school students to wear an RFID-enabled ID badge around their necks at all times, Andrea Hernandez is being involuntarily withdrawn from John Jay High School in San Antonio effective November 26th, according to a letter sent by the district that has now been made public.  The letter, sent on November 13, informs her father that the Smart ID program, which was phased in with the new school year, is now in "full implementation" and requires all students to comply by wearing the location-tracking badges.

Spying on school kids.  School districts in Texas are using tracking chips to spy on students.  That's just fine with a federal judge who ruled Tuesday [1/8/2013] against Andrea Hernandez, a 15-year-old high school sophomore in San Antonio.  With the help of the Rutherford Institute, Miss Hernandez and her father filed a lawsuit arguing the creepy "student locator project" violated her constitutional rights.

Also posted at RFID 1984.

The students had better not bring Tylenol to school, but...
Some NYC schools to offer "morning after" pills.  New York City's Department of Education has begun offering "morning after" contraceptive pills to students in a pilot program at 13 of the city's high schools. [...] The birth control will be available to students as young as 14 without parental notification.

4th grader's drawing assignment on 9/11 attacks raises concerns.  Parents of some elementary school students are furious over a class assignment.  They said children were asked to draw images depicting the terrorist attacks of 9/11.  Parents said the teacher gave specific instructions to fourth-graders at Hughey Elementary in central El Paso.  "'We had to draw the boom cloud, the planes hitting, and people jumping out of the windows,'" said Ivie Gremillion.

Principal Sees Racism in Peanut Butter.  An Oregon grade school principal suggested in a newspaper interview that peanut butter and jelly sandwiches might be racially and culturally offensive. [...] The equity program is called "Courageous Conversation" and it involves taking educators through an intensive program so they can understand their own "white privilege," the newspaper reported.  Robb Cowie, the communications director for Portland Public Schools told Fox News they were aware of the story and to their knowledge it was factually accurate.  "What we're trying to do in our school district is to ensure that we have instruction that is meaningful and relevant to ever student in the classroom," Cowie said.  In some cases, that means offering programs strictly for students of color.

The Editor says...
That sounds like the "separate but equal" education system that the liberals say they oppose.

18 Signs That Life In U.S. Public Schools Is Now Essentially Equivalent To Life In U.S. Prisons.  In the United States today, our public schools are not very good at educating our students, but they sure are great training grounds for learning how to live in a Big Brother police state control grid.  Sadly, life in many U.S. public schools is now essentially equivalent to life in U.S. prisons.  Most parents don't realize this, but our students have very few rights when they are in school.  Our public school students are being watched, tracked, recorded, searched and controlled like never before.

Progressive Education and the Perversion of American Democracy.  [Scroll down]  It is America's decades-long experiment with progressive and postmodern progressive education that has produced almost two generations of low-information citizens who have become easier to dupe for the benefit of our increasingly intrusive and imperial government.  The progressive education model began to receive widespread attention during the first decades of the twentieth century. [...] The state of our education crisis — especially our urban education crisis — has led many to embrace unrealistic ideas that are simply not working.

Texas Students Revolt Against Mandatory RFID Tracking Chips.  Students and parents at two San Antonio schools are in revolt over a program that forces kids to wear RFID tracking name tags which are used to pinpoint their location on campus as well as outside school premises.  Students at John Jay High School and Anson Jones Middle School will be mandated to wear the tags from today which will be used to track them on campus as well as when they enter and leave school.

Football Is the New Smoking.  This morning, fat kids across America ran wind sprints until they vomited, drove sleds like beasts until muscle collapse, and alternated between jogging in place and hitting the deck so frequently that it jarred even the insides of onlookers.  And they do it all again this afternoon.  This isn't a federal anti-obesity initiative.  It's football.

Nebraska school says deaf 3-year-old's sign-language gesture for his own name looks like 'weapons,' must change.  School authorities in Grand Island, Neb., fret that the hand sign used by 3-year-old deaf boy to signify his own name is a violation of district policy on banning anything that may resemble a weapon, the boy's family says.  They want him to change it.

The Editor says...
I guess that means that if you name your kid Dynamite you have to send him to a private school.

Educational Lunacy.  If I were a Klansman, wanting to sabotage black education, I couldn't find better allies than education establishment liberals and officials in the Obama administration, especially Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, who in March 2010 announced that his department was "going to reinvigorate civil rights enforcement."  For Duncan, the civil rights issue was that black elementary and high school students are disciplined at a higher rate than whites.  His evidence for discrimination is that blacks are three and a half times more likely to be suspended or expelled than their white peers.

Obama backs race-based school discipline policies.  President Barack Obama is backing a controversial campaign by progressives to regulate schools' disciplinary actions so that members of major racial and ethnic groups are penalized at equal rates, regardless of individuals' behavior.  His July 26 executive order established a government panel to promote "a positive school climate that does not rely on methods that result in disparate use of disciplinary tools."  "African Americans lack equal access to highly effective teachers and principals, safe schools, and challenging college-preparatory classes, and they disproportionately experience school discipline," said the order, titled "White House Initiative On Educational Excellence."

The Editor says...
The Constitution says nothing about education or executive orders, so Barack H. Obama is clearly operating outside his authority.  In any event, if black students "disproportionately experience school discipline," maybe it's because they disproportionally exhibit a lack of self-discipline.

DCPS forcing special needs kids into unfit public schools.  Parents and attorneys of special education students in the District say DCPS is pushing children out of specialized private schools and back into their neighborhood schools in an effort to meet a directive from Mayor Vincent Gray to cut in half the number of special needs students in private placements by 2014 — moving 1,100 of them.  In the process, the city is saving money and boosting the reputation of its public schools.  But it's also shortchanging the system's most at-risk students by putting them in schools that can't handle them, parents and lawyers say.

How American Public Education Has Become a Criminal Enterprise.  American public schools are daily guilty of deliberately committing the following crimes:  child abuse by deliberately impairing a child's brain through the use of teaching methods designed to produce functional illiteracy;  contributing to the delinquency of a minor by teaching pornographic sex education and "alternative" lifestyles;  destroying a child's belief in biblical religion, a moral crime that leads children into atheism, nihilism, and Satanism which can result in self-destructive, murderous behavior;  pushing drugs by promoting the use of Ritalin, Adderall, and other mind altering drugs as potent as cocaine;  extorting billions of dollars from the taxpayer on the phony pretext that they are actually educating the children.

It's parent vs. school over students' pledge of allegiance to teachers, district.  An optional pledge of allegiance to a New Jersey school and its teachers will continue after an attorney determined it's not problematic following a complaint by one parent who deemed it to be unconstitutional, FoxNews.com has learned.  For the past decade, every Monday of the school year at Asher Holmes Elementary School in Morganville, N.J., has started with students reciting a pledge honoring the Marlboro Township School District and its teachers, who "help [students] learn" all they need to "know for the future."

Spanish Graduation Speech Enrages Community.  A California school district is defending its decision to allow a valedictorian to deliver his graduation speech entirely in Spanish even though many people in the audience only spoke English and felt excluded from the ceremony.  Jessie Ceja, the principal at Orestimba High School in Newman, Calif., said the valedictorian had earned the right to deliver the speech any way he saw fit.

The Editor says...
Yeah, right.  Any way he saw fit, unless that included a reverent dedication to Jesus Christ.

School District Shows Zero Intelligence With Spanish-Language Valedictory Speech.  A school district in tiny Newman, Calif., showed zero intelligence in encouraging a presumably high-achieving student to deliver his high-school valedictorian speech in Spanish.  Did they teach him anything at all?

Teen Suicide: Is Death Ed a Cause?  [Scroll down]  Most people, including parents, haven't the faintest idea what death education is.  A graphic description of death education was given in the Winslow Sentinel of 4/9/90.  Winslow, a town of about 5,500 inhabitants, is in central Maine where people assume that weird subjects like death and dying are not part of the school curriculum.  You'll assume differently after reading this account.

Teen Suicide: Is Death Education a Cause? (Part 2).  Several years ago in Canton, Michigan, an 8-year-old boy was shown a suicide film in his second-grade class, in which a depressed child tries to hang himself.  Less than 24 hours later, the 8-year-old, mimicking the boy in the movie, hanged himself in his own bedroom.  (When parents later sued the school, the second-grade teachers destroyed their lesson plans.)  This was not the first such suicide.  In 1985, a 14-year-old high school freshman, an honor student with great promise as an athlete, hanged himself after watching a television movie about teenage suicide, Silence of the Heart.  (NFD Journal, Feb. 1985)

Education Secretary Sees Laptop on Every Desk As Way to 'Insure Educational Equity'.  U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan says the federal government "will do all we can" to support the use of technology in education because technology "can even the playing field" for low-income, minority and rural students who don't have laptops and i-phones at home.  "The future of American education undoubtedly includes a laptop on every desk and universal Internet access in every home.  It definitely includes more on-line learning," Duncan told a conference in Austin, Texas, last week.

Student Reportedly Being Punished After Standing Up for Mentally Challenged Girl at School.  In the latest of what seems to be a string of reports of students and teachers bullying the mentally challenged in America's schools, 18-year-old Stormy Rich is claiming that she has been penalized for standing up for the mentally challenged student in question.  The school maintains that Rich should not have taken matters into her own hands, though she had complained to the school for weeks about the issue, and did nothing violent.

Girl who fought bullies now labeled one by school.  Stormy Rich, 18, thought she was doing the right thing in reporting bullying incidents she witnessed against a mentally-challenged middle school girl by a group of girls on morning bus rides to school. [...] Rich — who said she felt compelled to speak out because the girl couldn't even comprehend she was being pick on — first complained to the bus driver but the bullying continued.  She then complained to a high school official, who said he would contact the middle school, but nothing changed.

Big Brother uses school children to troll for incriminating information
State exam asks N.J. 3rd graders to write essay on secret they had kept.  Is it okay to ask a child to reveal a secret?  Richard Goldberg doesn't think so.  Goldberg, the father of 8-year old twin boys, was dismayed to learn his third-grade sons were asked to write an essay about a secret they had and why it was hard to keep.  The unusual question, which Goldberg called "entirely inappropriate" was on the standardized tests given to public school students in the third through eighth grade every spring.

NJ Test Asked Children to Reveal Secret.  New Jersey education officials said they will no longer use a standardized test question that forced 9-year-olds to reveal a secret.  The decision comes after outraged parents accused the state of going on a "fishing expedition to pry" into private family affairs.  "This was an outrageous question," said Richard Goldberg, a dentist in Marlboro, NJ and a father of twin 9-year-olds.  "How could you put these children in that position on a test where you are just supposed to be testing whether than can write and spell?"

What About the Kids Who Behave?  The Obama administration is waving around a new study showing that black school kids are "suspended, expelled, and arrested in school" at higher rates than white kids.  According to the report, which looked at 72,000 schools, black students comprise just 18% of those enrolled yet account for 46% of those suspended more than once and 39% of all expulsions. ... The data were compiled by the Education Department's civil rights office, which probably thinks that it's doing black people a favor by highlighting these racial disparities and pressuring schools to reduce black suspension rates.  No thought, it seems, was given to whether this course of action helps or harms those black kids who are in school to learn and not act up.

The Big Hoax.  The biggest hoax of the past two generations is still going strong — namely, the hoax that statistical differences in outcomes for different groups are due to the way other people treat those groups.  The latest example of this hoax is the joint crusade of the Department of Education and the Department of Justice against schools that discipline black males more often than other students. ... If black males get punished more often than Asian American females, does that mean that it is somebody else's fault?  That it is impossible that black males are behaving differently from Asian American females?  Nobody in his right mind believes that.  But that is the unspoken premise, without which the punishment statistics prove nothing about "equity."

Permission slips for school cookies.  The West Virginia Legislature continues to be a marvel of bureaucratic bullying.  Lawmakers plan to make possession of Sudafed without a prescription a felony worth up to 10 years in prison.  Now Democratic Delegate Ralph Rodighiero of Logan County wants to regulate Christmas cookies at school — along with Halloween candy and peeps at Easter.  Delegate Rodighiero introduced House Bill 2191 without co-sponsors.  It would restrict "parents or the school to serve sweets during the holidays if the school receives parental or guardian consent."

More school hours don't guarantee better test scores.  Students who spend more hours in the classroom aren't guaranteed higher test scores, and many nations that outpace the U.S. on standardized reading and math assessments keep their children in school for much less time, according to a report from the National School Boards Association.

The Socialist Agenda Behind "Whole Language".  We have known for quite some time that there is a socialist political agenda behind the movement to do away with systematic phonics and replace it with Whole Language and other similar sight-reading programs.  A sight method, like Whole Language, teaches children to read English as if it were Chinese, that is, composed of word-pictures like Chinese characters, rather than letters that stand for sounds.  Children are taught a "sight vocabulary," a list of words they are supposed to memorize by their shape or association with a picture.  They do not learn the letter sounds or how to decipher words by analyzing their phonetic structure and breaking multisyllabic words into their syllables, which is the proper way to teach a child to read.

A Moron with a Computer Is Still a Moron.  Since the Clinton administration, liberal "experts" have argued that giving every kid a laptop, "educational" software, and Internet access will produce a generation of geniuses.  That has to be the stupidest idea in the history of education. Of course, it hasn't worked.  But that doesn't discourage the New Age nerds who run the Obama adminstration's education policy.

Mainstreaming Progressive Education: A Scheme Hidden in Plain Sight.  [John] Dewey characterized himself as a "democratic socialist."  Over the years, his writings increasingly underscored an aversion to the free-market system; an abhorrence of religion, especially Christianity; a distaste for educational basics such as reading and writing; and finally, in 1928, an admiration for Soviet schooling  — for the creation of what he called a "collectivistic mentality."

A Fitting Prophet for our Age?  We happen to live in an era of moral relativism whose foundational claim is that there is really no transcendent right and wrong.  Public schools teach children today that pretty much everything goes, because there is no objective standard by which to judge the moral content of human actions.

Swedish Preschool Goes Genderless.  Egalia preschool in Stockholm is attempting to make gender roles obsolete.  The staff is instructed to create an atmosphere as "gender neutral" as possible in order to avoid placing social restrictions on children regarding gender roles.

The rot in values that is causing America's decline.  Thrift, hard work, close-knit families, a pioneering spirit, a love of adventure, a rejection of indolence, faith-based ethics, a God-centric society, a belief in spreading freedom and democracy — where did that all go?  Science and math.  Science and math.  President Barack Obama's new mantra is science and math.

White House to put up to 5,000 salad bars in schools.  The White House is set to announce on Monday [11/15/2010] a major new initiative that would place up to 5,000 salad bars in public schools nationwide, despite uncertainties over how local health inspectors might treat those salad bars and USDA nutrition-tracking rules that could prove a major impediment.  Officials in the White House, led by chef Sam Kass, and at the U.S. Centers for Disease and Prevention, have been working to build a coalition representing the produce industry and Ann Cooper, director of nutrition services in Boulder, Colo. schools, who recently teamed with Whole Foods to raise $1.4 million from customers to establish a grant program that would place salad bars in qualifying schools.

Fighting childhood obesity the family way.  At the root of childhood obesity are two connected problems:  At the same time that children are consuming more "empty" calories, they also are getting less exercise.  Many factors have combined to foster a more sedentary lifestyle, even for children.  In many communities, children are not allowed to walk or ride bicycles to school.  Many schools have eliminated recess and physical education from the school day.  At home, the children are watching more television and playing video games for longer and longer amounts of time during the day.

California Supreme Court OKs In-State Tuition for Illegal Immigrants.  Illegal immigrants can get in-state tuition at California colleges if they graduated from a high school in the state, the California Supreme Court ruled.  "The ruling is the first of its kind in the nation," the Los Angeles Times' Maura Dolan and Larry Gordon report, and though just ten other states offer such benefits, this ruling makes challenges to those laws less likely.

Mom Upset Over Son's Assignment to Recite Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish.  Melissa Taggart says she was delighted that her son was learning a foreign language in the eighth grade — until she learned he was expected to recite the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish.  And that he'd receive a zero if he didn't.

College for Those Who Can't Learn.  It is not easy being a connoisseur of educational foibles — just as one is recovering from the latest foolishness, along comes something new, and it's back to the anti-depressants.  The latest installment of Educators Gone Wild is the push to enroll the "intellectually disabled" in college.  We are not talking about attracting eccentrics; these recruits are youngsters with Down Syndrome, autism, and other disabilities that seriously impede learning.  This is college for those stymied by reading and writing.

Obamechanic tinkers with colleges.  The Obama administration seems determined to bring academia under the government's heavy hand.  You'd think President Obama would leave it alone, because most college professors probably voted for him.  But wait.  The real aim seems to be to politicize the academy even more.  Education Secretary Arne Duncan wants all schools that accept federal student aid to have a license from a state agency that would list "authorized" institutions.  Anyone else would be out of luck.  The state agencies would follow federal guidelines, of course.

Make Way for the Milk Monitors.  [Scroll down]  Now, in an effort to feel better about substituting moral bankruptcy for academic excellence, educators and government bureaucrats have joined forces in a campaign to expose the evils of Nesquik.  That's right — chocolate milk is on the way to being off-limits on school grounds because liberals who are unconcerned with morality are presently overly concerned with obesity.  The same Food Police who, as a benevolent contribution to society, are in the process of emptying vending machines of pretzel sticks are now targeting cafeteria milk carts and discriminating against cocoa-infused foodstuffs.

Obama Continues Pushing Absurd College Agenda.  [Scroll down]  The core idea, that the country needs more college graduates, is nonsensical.  The first point to observe is that "our" college graduation rate is just a statistical artifact, like "our" home ownership rate and "our" voting rate.  To people imbued with a central planning mindset, such statistics betoken national success or failure.  In fact, the nation isn't doing anything.  Millions of individuals are deciding whether or not to go to college and complete the course of study.

This is another step toward 24-hour ownership of your children:
Education secretary calls for 12-hour school days, longer school year.  If Education Secretary Arne Duncan has his way, kids would be spending a lot more time at school — and a three-month summer would be a thing of the past.  Duncan joked with attendees at a luncheon at the National Press Club Tuesday [7/27/2010] in Washington that he would like schools to stay open 13 months out of the year.  Then he told the audience of over 100 that he seriously supports longer school hours.

California Students Get Tracking Devices.  California officials are outfitting preschoolers in Contra Costa County with tracking devices they say will save staff time and money.

The Editor says...
When the school officials want to implant an RFID chip in your child's hand or forehead — ostensibly for everyone's convenience — it will be a dark day.

The Student Loan Takeover.  The unilateral seizure of the student loan program by the Obama administration carries extremely serious implications for the future of higher education in America, especially in view of a confluence of market forces that have the potential to effect the greatest changes education has seen in decades.  Outside the liberal academic community, there is general agreement that the traditional university model is broken.  Institutions founded for purposes of education and learning have become bloated and dysfunctional conglomerates with vastly oversized administrative staffs and a voracious appetite for money from students, taxpayers (state schools), and alumni (private schools).

P'town puts condoms in kids' hands.  A new policy in Provincetown to make condoms available to even first-graders is being called "absurd" and a frantic overreaction to sex education.

Teacher's Assignment to HS Students:  Plan a Deadly Terror Attack.  A high school teacher who assigned her class to plan a terrorist attack that would kill as many innocent Australians as possible had no intent to promote terrorism, education officials said Wednesday [8/25/2010].

Liberals make lame excuses.  Take for instance the liberal mantra, "Kids have sex anyway might as well hand out condoms."  The left is of the belief that those divinely bestowed with a free will are powerless to control natural impulse.  Human beings are reduced to beasts, devoid of ability to choose right from wrong.  Thus, in liberal land, lack of a standard fosters the promotion of mediocre expectations and accomplishes the goal of excusing failure.

The soft bigotry of low expectations.  The Obama administration's Department of Education has announced that it will crack down on "civil-rights infractions" in public schools, including alleged disparities in the disciplining of white and black students.  This means that the administration will identify and investigate situations in which a facially neutral discipline system — offense X brings punishment Y — results in blacks being discplined more often than whites.  School systems will face the prospect of being punished unless they can explain the disparities, presumably based on a painstaking analysis of each disciplinary decision.

You're a Liberal/Progressive if You Believe...  a public school student who comes to the conclusion that 2+2=5 should get partial credit — for putting the numbers in the right order or proper usage of the "plus" and "equal" signs.  Such thinking is a natural extension of the idea that:  1. self-esteem — absent anything resembling genuine achievement — is the ultimate measurement of a child's "success" or 2. a "passing grade" should be low enough to allow the education establishment to claim they're doing a "better" job of educating American kids than they were before.  You also believe that every problem created by public school unions and their political lackeys can be solved with more money.

The Latest Thievery:  Best Friends.  [Scroll down]  "Parents sometimes say Johnny needs that one special friend," she continued.  "We say he doesn't need a best friend."  As a result of this thinking, best friends are broken up.  Buddies are put on separate teams, assigned different classes, etc.  It's not quite the sort of thing cult leaders and North Korean prison guards do, but in principle it's not too far off either.

Child "Experts" Backpedal on Socialization Dogma.  [Scroll down]  Pseudo-educators-turned-social engineers, like John Dewey in the 1920s, were among the first in a long list to dismiss the three R's as being vastly overrated and to favor child-socialization instead.  But the anti-discipline, anti-authoritarian factions began launching a more aggressive campaign under the umbrella of "Mental Hygiene" immediately following World War II.  Through speeches, women's magazines, and teacher-preparation courses, psychologists and psychiatrists started pitching the idea that unless parents wanted to turn out a bunch of little Hitlers and Mussolinis, they had better ease up on the discipline and drop their obsession with right and wrong.

New Design HS students earn gym credits by selling snacks.  Exercise-starved students from a lower Manhattan school are getting gym credits for working concessions at the Rooftop Films festival, the [New York] Daily News has learned.  "Selling drinks and popcorn at a movie is not physical education.  It's just not right," said Palmer Taylor, a gym teacher at New Design High School.

Chesapeake principal won't let mom pick up daughter.  The mother scheduled a Wednesday morning doctor's appointment for her daughter.  Come Wednesday morning [5/19/2010], the fourth-grader was taking a Standards of Learning exam.  The mother came to pick up her daughter.  The principal said no.

Michigan Elementary School Principal Investigated for Blacks-Only Class Trip.  An elementary school principal in Michigan is under investigation for authorizing a field trip for 30 black students to meet with an African-American rocket scientist.  Students who are not black were excluded from the outing — a possible violation of a state law that bans racial favoritism in public schools.

Black students' field trip draws parents' anger in Michigan.  A school district in Michigan is defending its intentions after a field trip by African-American elementary students drew complaints from excluded children and their parents.

The Editor says...
Imagine the uproar if a public school scheduled a field trip for whites only.

Elementary is in hot water over field trip.  An Ann Arbor elementary school field trip has led to allegations that the school violated Proposal 2, the 2006 voter-approved initiative that bans racial preference in Michigan public schools.  At issue is whether the 30 Dicken Elementary students, African-American members of an academic peer-support group, should have been allowed to take a trip to the University of Michigan to hear from a black rocket scientist without an invitation going to other students in the Ann Arbor school.

Update:
School program for black students disbanded in Ann Arbor.  A program for black elementary students in Ann Arbor has been disbanded after criticism over a field trip to meet a black rocket scientist.

Student Group Disbanded After Blacks-Only Field Trip.  The Michigan school district investigating whether an elementary school field trip that excluded white students was illegal has disbanded the black-students-only academic support group that participated in the outing two weeks ago.

Displaying Old Glory:  An "Incendiary" Act?  Some stories in the news are just too zany to be taken seriously.  Like for instance, the wretched tale of five students in Morgan Hill that were sent home for wearing T-shirts with the American flag on Cinco de Mayo Day.

Two People Who Deserve to be Fired.  There are two people who should be out of work for their poor decisions lately.  One, the school official at Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, California who sent home two students who wore t-shirts with American flags.  Apparently, showing your American patriotism is not welcome in America during celebrations of Cinco de Mayo.  The Vice Principal thought the t-shirts were "incendiary."

California Principal Apologizes for Forbidding U.S. Flag Shirts on Mexican Holiday.  A California high school principal has apologized for telling five students they couldn't wear U.S. flag shirts on Cinco de Mayo, the local superintendent said Friday [5/7/2010].  Tensions at Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill had risen in the wake of the decision to forbid the shirts, as the students who wore the shirts defended their right to show their patriotism — even on a Mexican holiday — while a large group of Hispanic students staged a walkout Thursday in protest.

Is America Conquered when the American Flag is 'Offensive'?  Californians were recently confronted with a sobering reality.  Students at a large high school in the Morgan Hill district were told by school administrators that American flag tee shirts and other patriotic paraphernalia were not allowed, citing Cinco de Mayo as justification  Few students at the school probably realize that America provided help to Mexico in expelling the French, whose defeat at the Battle of Puebla is comemorated on May 5th.

High School Where Flag Flap Occurred Hides Racist Secret.  How is wearing the American flag, in America, disrespectful to another culture?  How is it disrespectful to your shared culture?  These protesting scholars could not give a logical explanation (there isn't one), but tried to use the bizarre argument that wearing the U.S. flag to school on Cinco de Mayo was the equivalent of wearing the Mexican flag on the Fourth of July.  The display of ignorance by these students shows that Live Oak High School administrators are not just guilty of First Amendment rights violations, but are utterly inept educators as well.

Wow!  Another teacher has a problem with a kid and an American flag.  Our flag is a symbol of the principles on which America was founded; upon looking at it, one may reflexively recall the phrase "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness"; it is a symbol of freedom, individual rights, self-sufficiency, capitalism and prosperity.  Obama wants to dismantle and remake America.  His sycophants, including this Gavilan Middle School teacher, know it.

New York schools' ban on homemade goods at bake sales has parents steamed.  Low-fat Doritos and Pop Tarts are in; goodies baked at home are out.  School officials say they're fighting obesity.  Angry parents say it sends the wrong message about food habits.

Making the grade or changing the grade?  Montgomery County Maryland public schools have learned that students apparently installed keyloggers on teachers' computers, then used the passwords they captured to log in and change their grades.  Besides disciplining the students, they've given teachers two (ineffective) instructions:  to check grades, and to change their passwords.  The first is ineffective because most teachers enter grades directly into the system, and don't have hardcopies of the assigned grades to compare against.

Lower Merion School District sued for cyber spying on students.  Lower Merion School District officials brag that they give every one of their 1,800 high-schoolers laptop computers to "ensure that all students have 24/7 access to school-based resources."  Instead, they ensured they got a 24/7 sneak peek into students' private lives by secretly monitoring webcams embedded in the laptops to spy on teens and their families at home, according to a federal, class-action lawsuit filed this week in Philadelphia.

Federal judge orders school district to stop spying on students.  A Pennsylvania school district has been ordered to disable equipment allowing officials to watch students using cameras on their laptops.  The order, issued Wednesday [2/24/2010] by a federal judge, will prevent school administrators from turning on cameras installed on students' school-issued laptops remotely.

Big Teacher Is Watching You.  My laptop's webcam now has a postage stamp covering it.  Does yours?  This week, a district court judge in Philadelphia, PA, had to do the unthinkable:  issue an order preventing a school district from further remote reactivation of webcams on laptop computers issued to nearly 2,000 high school students, a practice which has left many students and parents wondering whether school administrators had unfettered access into their homes and lives.

When schools spy on their students, bad things happen.  Last week the Robbins family, whose son Blake attends LMSD's Harriton High, filed a class-action suit against the district alleging that it's been spying on its students via webcams on school-supplied MacBooks.  The suit came about after Blake Robbins was called into the assistant principal Lindy Matsko's office last November to discuss "inappropriate behavior" he was displaying — at home.  The proof?  A snapshot of him taken with his laptop's Webcam.  Apparently Matsko thought Blake was popping pills.  According to Robbins, he was merely eating candy:  Mike-N-Ikes.

Students'-eye view of Webcam spy case.  Students at Harriton High School in Lower Merion School District near Philadelphia are given Apple MacBook laptops to use both at school and at home.  Like all MacBooks, the ones issued to the students have a Webcam.  And, in addition to the students' ability to use the Webcam to take pictures or video, the school district can also use it to take photographs of whomever is using the computer.

School 'Spycam' in Student's Home Sparks Outrage in Philly Suburb.  A school district in suburban Philadelphia apparently thought it had devised the perfect anti-theft device for the laptops it issued its students — until parents discovered the plan involved secretly using a Web camera to snap photos of their children, even in their bedrooms at home.

School Snoops on Students at Home Via Computer Camera.  The Lower Merion, Pennsylvania, school district lent high school sophomore Blake Robbins an Apple MacBook laptop last fall, and then utilized security software on the computer's webcam to take pictures of him in his home.  The pictures involved him sleeping and getting dressed, but the school district's information systems coordinator Carol Cafiero contends in a lawsuit that Robbins had "no legitimate expectation of privacy" with the laptop.

Obama, Freud, and the American Progressives' Guilt Trip.  At the turn of the twentieth century, an early "progressive" Vermonter named John Dewey kick-started a makeover of America's education system. ... And so from The Child and the Curriculum emerged a construct that Dewey called the "psychologizing" of education, and progressives would use his unsupported contentions to pervert the process by which education would be conducted over the next hundred years.

Pressure-cooker kindergarten.  A new emphasis on testing and test preparation — brought on by politicians, not early education experts — is hurting the youngest students.

Say No to Universal Preschool.  Most parents are delighted to share their childcare expenses with taxpayers.  Yet there's shockingly little evidence that this costly dash to universalize the preschool experience will do much good for American education, particularly the kids who most need help preparing for kindergarten.  It's more like a new middle-class entitlement — and an expansion of the public-school empire.  Indeed, it suffers from five basic flaws...

5 Character Flaws That Are Destroying America's Future.  [#3]  Excessive Self-Esteem:  Perhaps because we've spent decades trying to pump up the self-esteem of children in our public schools, irregardless (sic) of whether they've done anything to merit it, we have legions of people in our society who have an excessive level of confidence in their beliefs and abilities.  They're just so darn sure that what they believe is right just by virtue of the fact they believe it.  Traditions?  Codes of conduct?  Religious beliefs?  Customs?  There's no need to even understand why previous generations believed what they did or to question what purpose it served.  Just remember that they were racist back then and so they couldn't have had any good ideas.

Using school kids as government pawns:
Students' take-home assignment:  Census kits.  Anyone tempted to ignore the 2010 Census will have a tough time doing it — especially if they have kids in school.

California eyes digital textbooks.  The California Department of Education is moving forward on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's plan to scrap printed high school textbooks for digital ones.  But issues surrounding student access to computers and the credibility of the information could pose potential problems for educators.

The Editor says...
With this system in place, how will parents know what's in their children's textbooks from one month to the next?  After textbooks are approved, they could be easily modified, and the parents would never know.  The trend away from books and toward computers is going fast enough already, I think.  The following item shows how easily digital books can be destroyed — even if (you think) you own the book!

Amazon Removes E-Books From Kindle Store, Revokes Ownership.  Today, Amazon removed George Orwell's 1984 and Animal Farm from its Kindle e-book store.  The company also went ahead and removed any digital trace of the books, too — striking them from both users' digital lockers and from Kindle devices.  This disturbing, Orwellian move underscores how, in spite of comments otherwise, a purchase in the digital realm can't be compared to physical ownership of content.

Amazon Erases Orwell Books From Kindle.  In George Orwell's "1984," government censors erase all traces of news articles embarrassing to Big Brother by sending them down an incineration chute called the "memory hole."  On Friday [7/17/2009], it was "1984" and another Orwell book, "Animal Farm," that were dropped down the memory hole — by Amazon.com.

Update:
Amazon CEO apologizes for deleting Orwell books.  Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has issued an apology to Kindle customers after "1984" and other books by British novelist George Orwell were remotely deleted from their electronic readers.  "This is an apology for the way we previously handled illegally sold copies of '1984' and other novels on Kindle," the Amazon chief executive said in a post on Thursday [7/23/2009] on the Kindle Community discussion forum.  "Our 'solution' to the problem was stupid, thoughtless, and painfully out of line with our principles," Bezos wrote.

The Editor says...
This is only pertinent to the topic of this page because it shows how easily electronic books can be edited, revised, or destroyed with just the push of a button.  But as far as e-books in general are concerned, who in his right mind would buy an e-book device now that we all know how easily those books can be erased and/or removed?

Another update:
Amazon sued over Kindle deletion of Orwell books.  A high school student is suing Amazon.com Inc. for deleting an e-book he purchased for the Kindle reader, saying his electronic notes were bollixed, too.  Amazon CEO Jeffrey P. Bezos has apologized to Kindle customers for remotely removing copies of the George Orwell novels "1984" and "Animal Farm" from their e-reader devices.

Education chief wants textbooks to become obsolete.  Education Secretary Arne Duncan called Tuesday [10/2/2012] for the nation to move as fast as possible away from printed textbooks and toward digital ones.

Education chief Duncan wants textbooks to become obsolete.  Education Secretary Arne Duncan called Tuesday for the nation to move as fast as possible away from printed textbooks and toward digital ones.  "Over the next few years, textbooks should be obsolete," he declared. [...] A school district in Huntsville, Ala., launched an effort over the summer to become the first district to transition fully to digital textbooks.  To do that, the district must first ensure every student has either a laptop or a tablet computer.

The Editor says...
Besides the fact that electronic textbooks can be instantly revised and edited en masse at any time by the ministry of truth, i.e., the education secretary (whose department should not even exist) says he wants to move as fast as possible, according to the reports above.  Any time the government wants to make sweeping changes quickly, there is deception involved.  And then there is the issue of government-issued (or government-mandated) laptop computers:  Who knows what else will be installed on those computers?  The computers go home every night, and will probably need to be connected to the internet for "upgrades" and eventually for news bulletins and pronouncements from Big Brother.  A few years ago, Kindle users found out one morning that some of their electronic books had been revoked, including (ironically) 1984.  Over-reliance on computers can only lead to disappointment and confusion down the road.

Speaking of textbooks...
From the Halls of Chicago Schools: Memoirs of a Textbook Salesman.  For more than 30 years, I was an educational sales representative selling textbooks and workbooks to CPS.  My educational sales experiences included me working with teachers and school administrators — people who, for the most part, were, and are, overwhelmingly liberal in their thinking.  Unlike most of my customers, I, on the other hand, am a conservative.  My employer, a family-owned schoolbooks publisher in business since the 1930s, is now closing, and I, like so many other Americans living in Obama's economy, have joined the ranks of the unemployed.

My Idea and Your Consequence.  One really bad idea that is thriving in higher education is the so-called trans-gendered rights movement.  It is thriving not because of the work of trans-gendered persons but because of feminists who are willing to use them to advance their own ideas about gender and equality.  Feminists have been increasingly enamored with the idea that there are no innate differences between men and women.  In recent years, they have been arguing with greater and greater frequency that all male/female differences come from the "culture" or that they are "socially constructed."

Title IX in Science and Engineering:  Your university's science and engineering programs might be "Titled nined" if Those That Care have their way.  Title IX, or the "Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act", is one of those government programs that sounds like a good idea to busybodies:  mandate diversity in college sports so that just as many females as males play.

Dallas ISD faulted for using fake Social Security numbers.  Years after being advised by a state agency to stop, the Dallas Independent School District continued to provide foreign citizens with fake Social Security numbers to get them on the payroll quickly.  Some of the numbers were real Social Security numbers already assigned to people elsewhere.  And in some cases, the state's educator certification office unknowingly used the bogus numbers to run criminal background checks on the new hires, most of whom were brought in to teach bilingual classes.

High on Green.  Every 26 seconds, a student drops out of high school in the United States.  National test scores reveal that half of all low-income fourth graders cannot read.  Given such alarming statistics, you'd think that helping at-risk kids would be the top education-related priority on Capitol Hill.  Apparently not.  As far as Congress is concerned, the real problem with public education in America is that it's not environmentally friendly enough.

Students Asked To Plot Terror Attack.  A ninth grade history project at a high school in Pueblo was supposed to teach students about terrorism, but instead it outraged parents.  Gini Fischer says her daughter came home Thursday [5/7/2009] saying she had two minutes to come up with a plot for an act of terrorism.

Teacher sells advertising space on tests.  Good morning, class, and welcome to U.S. history, brought to you by Molto Caldo Pizzeria.  In a cash-strapped Idaho high school where signs taped near every light switch remind the staff to save electricity, an enterprising teacher has struck a sponsorship deal with a local pizza shop.

The Editor asks...
With the government spending around $10,000 per student for public education, is there really any need to scrape together a few extra bucks by advertising in the classroom -- for a pizza parlor?  And aren't the public school teachers and administrators the same people who pretend to be outraged by the sale of junk food and soft drinks in the school cafeterias? [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]  Or cupcakes in the classroom? [1] [2

Teachers Defend Tactics in Hoax DWI Program.  On a Monday morning last month, highway patrol officers visited 20 classrooms at El Camino High School to announce some horrible news:  Several students had been killed in car wrecks over the weekend.  Classmates wept.  Some became hysterical.  A few hours and many tears later, though, the pain turned to fury when the teenagers learned that it was all a hoax — a scared-straight exercise designed by school officials to dramatize the consequences of drinking and driving.

The Editor asks...
How much does a student learn from a teacher after he finds out the teacher is a liar?

Self-esteem not a good teaching tool.  Turns out children are feeling pretty good about themselves lately.  Maybe a little too good.  A recent study by researchers at San Diego State University found that high school seniors are bursting with more self-esteem than a generation or two ago. ... Instilling that "world, here I come!" attitude is a great thing.  Instilling baseless self-congratulation?  Less so.

Down With Self-Esteem.  Remember self-esteem?  It was one of the sillier – and more dangerous – fads in educational circles, which keep going round and round. … Having been told how well they're doing throughout their well-insulated school years, these kids could be in for the shock of their nice, cushioned lives when they're thrown into the real world. … Some of these kids may be all et up with self-esteem, but they're woefully short on self-respect, which is quite another thing.

ACLU Urges California District to Let Kids Leave School for Medical Treatment Without Parental Consent.  The ACLU is threatening to sue a California school district after it changed a policy to require teenagers get parental consent to leave campus for confidential medical services.  The Vista Unified School District board voted unanimously Thursday [3/12/2009] to change its existing policy that allowed students to be excused for confidential appointments — including abortions — without notifying parents, according to the North County Times.  The ACLU of San Diego County and the National Center for Youth Law claim the new policy violates state law, KPBS reported.

$14 Million Study Proves Student Laptops are Ineffective Academically.  Our country has been waiting for a scientifically conducted study on laptops.  Now we have it.  Presented [in this article] are excerpts from the $14 Million Texas Technology Immersion Pilot (April 2006 report — funded by the U. S. Department of Education) which is supposed to prove whether student immersion on laptops by middle-school students will raise their academic achievement.  So far as I know, this study is one of a kind and is much needed since technology companies are pushing their laptops into classrooms through aggressive marketing tactics.

Duke study:  Internet makes children dumber.  Before your school district gets the bright idea of giving away laptops and getting all of the children online, have a look at this study from researchers at Duke...

Sending Poor Kids to Middle-Class Schools Doesn't Fix the System.  The magnet school scheme was tried from 1985 to 1997 in Kansas City, Missouri, at a cost of $2 billion.  To lure suburban white students, Kansas City's inner-city schools were equipped with lavish facilities:  Indoor pools, gymnasia, high-tech science labs, computers, etc.  But programs designed for the needs and interests of middle-class white suburbanites did not serve inner-city blacks.  And few suburban students were willing to commute to city schools for a luxury athletic complex or a classics magnet.  Test scores remained dreadful.  By 1997, the district actually had a smaller percentage of white students than when the plan started.

The Impact Of Violence On Public Education:  Our states and their school districts have set about establishing a variety of school security programs designed to both limit school violence and to react to it after it occurs.  But uniformed security personnel, gates, locks and alarms do little to assist the classroom teacher to maintain order in the very places where learning is supposed to be going on. ... Thus far, anti-violence programs for our schools have focused on police action and response protocols, with little focus on prevention.

The Editor says...
Disorder and violence in the schools is the poisonous fruit of decades of "self esteem" building in the schools.  All the humanist "believe in yourself" and "follow your heart" pap has produced nothing but narcissism.  When children are told they're the masters of their own fate, they will eventually believe they can do no wrong, their respect for authority goes out the window, and the resulting anarchy looks like the situation in almost any big-city high school today.

Over Ruled:  The Burden of Law on America's Public Schools.  Even relatively routine decisions can take months to complete.  For example, suspending a disruptive student involves 65 steps and legal considerations which can take 70 days to complete.  The "How Do I?" flowcharts illustrate how intimidating and time-consuming this and other procedures can be.  "The burden of law has become staggering," said Common Good chair Philip K. Howard.  "If teachers and principals are forced to spend their time working through these arduous procedures, how will they have the energy, enthusiasm, and time to educate?"

Let the drinking age stay put.  It is troubling to learn that college presidents from some of the nation's top universities are joining together in asking lawmakers to consider lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18. … One of their arguments that the current laws encourage college students to binge drink is ridiculous and there is no evidence to support it.  In fact, scientific studies have proven the exact opposite.

Perils of a lower drinking age:  Life is full of surprises, and some 100 college presidents think they have stumbled on one.  They think there is too much problem drinking on campus — no surprise there — and suggest we might solve the problem by changing the drinking age.  They don't propose raising it to 25.  They want to lower it to 18.

Protect Our Kids from Preschool.  Barack Obama says he believes in universal preschool and if he's elected president he'll pump "billions of dollars into early childhood education."  Universal preschool is now second only to universal health care on the liberal policy wish list. … But is strapping a backpack on all 4-year-olds and sending them to preschool good for them?  Not according to available evidence.

School survey shocks parent.  Lisa Lee of Bull Shoals was shocked Thursday evening [8/21/2008] when she saw a survey containing religious questions her son was asked to complete during his career-orientation class at Flippin Middle School. … "No one needs to see this information," Lee said. "It's religious profiling."

Why is Public Education Failing?  "Cooperative learning" is nothing more than a classroom-management technique that provides a convenient hiding place for bad teachers and under-achieving students.  The student who doesn't care to learn, or has failed to grasp a concept, allows the rest of the group to do the work and yet gets the same grade.

Freedom and the Left.  Most people on the left are not opposed to freedom.  They are just in favor of all sorts of things that are incompatible with freedom. ... One of the most innocent-sounding examples of the left's many impositions of its vision on others is the widespread requirement by schools and by college admissions committees that students do "community service."  There are high schools across the country from which you cannot graduate, and colleges where your application for admission will not be accepted, unless you have engaged in activities arbitrarily defined as "community service."

Iowa Redefines 'Minority' in Wake of U.S. Supreme Court Decision.  Before the ruling, the affected districts — Davenport, Des Moines, Postville, Waterloo, and West Liberty — employed a voluntary desegregation plan, [Carol] Greta said.  Now, those districts have broadened their definition of the term "minority" student, considering a combination of socioeconomic status, English language learning status, and student achievement data.  "The goal of the department is merely to maintain the status quo, so those districts who desire to maintain diversity and cut down on white flight can maintain the ability to," Greta said.

Bush reading program gets failing grade.  A scorching internal review of the Bush administration's billion-dollar-a-year reading program says the Education Department ignored the law and ethical standards to steer money how it wanted.  The government audit is unsparing in its view that the Reading First program has been beset by conflicts of interest and willful mismanagement.  It suggests the department broke the law by trying to dictate which curriculum schools must use.

Mom Outraged After Son, 5, Voted From Class.  A South Florida mother wants her son's teacher fired after his classmates voted him out of their kindergarten class.  Alex Barton, 5, was instructed by his teacher last week to stand in front of the class at Morningside Elementary in Port St. Lucie and listen as his classmates described what they disliked about him, according to a police report.

The Editor says...
It is almost as if the school is trying to produce the next generation of serial killers.

Texas Governor Mandates Cancer Vaccine for Girls.  Gov. Rick Perry ordered Friday [2/2/2007] that schoolgirls in Texas must be vaccinated against the sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer, making Texas the first state to require the shots. … Merck is bankrolling efforts to pass laws in state legislatures across the country mandating it.

This action by the Governor has resulted in a whole new page about all the ramifications.

Truancy for Parents in Texas.  Texas may join the ranks of states like Minnesota and California who are attempting to use the criminal law as a parenting tool.  A proposal in the state legislature would charge parents with a misdemeanor and a fine if they fail to attend a parent-teacher conference at their child's school.

Mandatory Student Activism:  "Innovations" like experiential learning (based on the notion that the more time pupils spend away from structured academic environments the better they master academic material), student-centeredness, democratic classroom, interdisciplinary instruction, contextual learning, and behavioral outcomes are among the anti-academic initiatives responsible for our educational crisis, and have been generally debunked.

Keep 'America' in Michigan schools.  Censoring the word "America" from our own schools is something Josef Stalin, Adolf Hitler and Osama bin Laden would never have thought possible.  Michigan has done it without a whimper.  In perhaps a well-intentioned, but pernicious example of political correctness, the Michigan Department of Education is attempting to ban the "America" and "American" from our public schools.

The Subversion of Education in America.  I'll bet you think that the problems with our nation's schools are a fairly recent phenomenon.  Wrong.  It dates backs to the 1960's.  Those that have implemented the subversion of our educational system have sought to fly well below the radar of public awareness, depending on stealth and duplicity to achieve the wreckage that has already stunted the lives of thousands who have passed through it.

Autism crusade plagued by incaution, illusions.  The recently launched crusade to have every child tested for autism before the age of two has as its reason an opportunity for "early intervention" to treat the condition. … But the dangers of false diagnoses of toddlers and preschoolers have been pointed out by Professor Stephen Camarata of Vanderbilt University, who has tested and treated children with autism for more than 20 years and has encountered many cases of inaccurate diagnoses.

Activists Battle Mental Health Screening Law.  Two years after a new law was passed in Illinois creating the framework for schools to screen students for mental health disorders, the state has saved more than $44 million in hospital costs, according to a report released in early October.  But some groups say the alleged cost savings do not justify a program under which schools are overstepping their authority.  They also say it imposes a mandatory, universal plan to screen all children from birth through 18.

Mental Health, Education and Social Control, Part 35.  Even before the [Virginia Tech] shootings, a growing number of schools in the U.S. were screening students for psychological problems, and in some areas, all children of any age in foster care are to be screened.  According to American Health Line, June 19, 2006, "one psychological evaluation system, TeenScreen, has been administered to more than 150,000 children in 42 states and the District of Columbia, and New York State plans to begin screening about 400,000 children a year."  In previous Parts of this series, I have detailed the rather serious problems with TeenScreen.

Cradle-to-college socialism:
Hillary Clinton Backs Federal Funding for 'America's Pre-K Movement'.  While senators scrambled to pass a financial "rescue" or "bailout" package that could cost taxpayers up to $700 billion on Wednesday [10/1/2008], Sens. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Kit Bond (R-Mo.) called for expanding the public education system to include 3- and 4-year-olds.  The pre-K programs would be paid for by state funding and supplemented by federal grants.

Why we need the Freedom In Education Act:  The federal government denies that there is a federal curriculum that reaches world government over national sovereignty.  Your Representatives in Congress are in the dark and the federal government is lying.  The fact is, the building blocks of world government are being taught in a number of ways.  There are several specific programs in today's education curriculum designed to promote global government.

The education of our children should not be left to the state.  Parents of elementary school children in California were upset that their kids were the targets of a sex survey conducted by the Palmdale School District.  The survey, distributed in 2002, focused on how often prepubescent school kids thought about sex and touched themselves — you know, just the kind of things educators need to know to in order to effectively teach reading, writing and math skills.

Fuzzy memory on fuzzy math.  The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics released new guidelines that, for example, call on fourth graders to know multiplication tables and division.  Oddly, it's big news when math teachers call for students to learn math skills.  So The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times reported that the guidelines signaled a return to emphasizing "basics" in math education.

Sorry, Cupcake, You're Not Welcome in Class.  The days of the birthday cupcake — smothered in a slurry of sticky frosting and with a dash of rainbow sprinkles — may be numbered in schoolhouses across the nation.  Fears of childhood obesity have led schools to discourage and sometimes even ban what were once de rigueur grammar-school treats.

Sounds like the Food Police came for a visit.

WSU ends "hecklers veto" aid but threatens conservative student's graduation.  It shouldn't have taken a threatened law suit and being held up to nationwide public scorn but Washington State University officials have stopped paying student hecklers who shout down speakers with whom they disagree.  Unfortunately, the stench remains strong at Washington State University of a Stalinist suppression of political views that deviate from the politically correct academic liberal orthodoxy.

Ill. students lose diplomas over cheers.  Caisha Gayles graduated with honors last month, but she is still waiting for her diploma.  The reason:  the whoops of joy from the audience as she crossed the stage.  Gayles was one of five students denied diplomas from the lone public high school in Galesburg after enthusiastic friends or family members cheered for them during commencement.

Putting tenure on trial:  If there's a dumber idea floating around than the guarantee of lifetime employment I'm not sure I want to hear about it.

Gambling with the Children.  After decades of both parties supporting a limited federal role in educational matters, we now face a broad-based assault on public education from the Beltway.  State rights?  Local control?  This education law makes a mockery of those concepts as it imposes radical and often untested change strategies across all districts.  Republicans and Democrats should join together to challenge this serious violation of state rights.

Students kicked off school bus in St. Paul for speaking English.  Imagine sending your kids off to school, but when they get to the bus they are told they can't get on because they speak English.  That's right, English.  It happened to a few children in St. Paul and now the school district is apologizing. … [The kids] were told by the bus driver the route is for non-English speaking students only.

Modern education's return to virtue, honesty, and justice.  In his new book John Dewey and the Decline of American Education, [Henry] Edmondson levels a scathing assessment of Dewey, the paradigm that drove him, and his legacy.  To Edmondson, Dewey's life is not a blessing but a curse that must be actively resisted on all fronts in the quest for educational reform and securing the future for America's youth.

They're being called the Kutztown 13.  They are a group of high schoolers charged with felonies for bypassing security with school-issued laptops, downloading forbidden internet goodies and using monitoring software to spy on district administrators. … The administrative password that allowed students to reconfigure computers and obtain unrestricted internet access was easy to obtain.  A shortened version of the school's street address, the password was taped to the backs of the computers.  The password got passed around and students began downloading such forbidden programs as the popular iChat instant-messaging tool.

 Editor's Note:   The school administrators acted with incompetence, putting the admin password on the back of the computer.  The kids who figured out how to use the computers to their full potential are the people who should go to the head of the class — not to prison.

Teacher concerns over L.A. school computerization project.  LAUSD is the second largest school district in the country, and is embarking on a computerization project that has many teachers concerned.  The driving force appears to be the desire to obtain every last possible attendance dollar per student, despite the risks that appear obvious even to persons who are not computer experts.

Crackberry Crunch:  The same study (of 100,000 school children in more than 30 countries) found that "non-computer using kids performed better in literacy and numeracy than PC-using children".  After all that public money the government sank into public school computerization...

Illinois Set to Ban Soda and Snacks in Schools.  The Illinois State Board of Education, following the urging of Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D), on December 15 began the process of banning the sale of high-fat, high-calorie foods and drinks to most of the state's elementary and middle school students. … While the proposed regulations have been developed in consultation with the American Heart Association, experts note there is no consensus on what junk food actually is.

25 Years of Forced Busing.  In 1971, Charlotte became ground zero for a noble but failed social experiment forced upon the country by the U.S. Supreme Court.  In its historic Swann vs. Charlotte-Mecklenburg school decision, the court permitted racially segregated school districts to begin busing in order to achieve integration.

101 Reasons the Public Schools are Hopeless.  Abundant anectodal evidence of abuse, poor judgement, and cruelty in the public schools.

Brainwashing in America:  The shift from factual education to feeling and experience-based learning began over seventy years ago. … Eventually, most students become conditioned to see everything through the new politically correct mental filter.

Only Half a Child:  Mixed Messages in New Mexico Schools.  Students twelve and under, you are encouraged to be sexually abstinent.  Students over twelve, you are encouraged to use a condom.  Half of your life you are encouraged to succeed.  The other half of your life, you are told you will probably fail. … It's a sad day for students and parents when the state health system gives up on teaching healthy choices and opts to believe that teens are incapable of restraining sexual urges.



Channel One

Nonprofit urges schools to ban Channel One newscast over onslaught of commercials.  Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood last month wrote school superintendents in 42 states, calling on them to conduct a thorough review of Channel One programming, which is currently broadcast to about five million students across the country each day.  The group believes school kids are being forced to watch too many commercials and they question the message in the ads, as well as Channel One's website, which they claim promotes highly sexualized content.

Group Launches New Campaign to Turn Off Channel One.  A broad coalition of companies, organizations and activists kicked off a new campaign [in June 2001] to stop Primedia's Channel One from exploiting school children for commercial gain.  Channel One is the in-school television program with a daily captive audience of about eight million school children in 12,000 schools, broadcasting 10 minutes of "news," music and filler, plus two minutes of advertising for a variety of child-directed products and services.

The Campaign To Tune Out Channel One:  Channel One is the in-school television program with a daily captive audience of about eight million children in 12,000 schools, broadcasting 10 minutes of "news," music and filler, plus two minutes of advertising for a variety of products and services aimed at youngsters. … Channel One misuses compulsory school attendance laws to force children to watch ads, wasting valuable school time.  The programs consume the equivalent of one instructional week of school time each school year, including one full day watching ads.

Channel One  is a 12-minute-a-day television marketing device forced on a captive audience of teenagers.  Children attend school because of compulsory attendance laws, and every day about 40% of all 11 to 18 year olds are forced to watch Channel One because their school board signed a contract agreeing to compel them. … Channel One can charge primetime rates for its one-minute spots peddling junk foods, soft drinks, expensive sneakers, and vulgar movies, magazines, and TV sitcoms.  Channel One gives advertisers a daily guaranteed teen audience comparable to the Super Bowl.

Channel One — Exploiting Children and Perverting Education.  Schools that agree to Channel Ones Faustian bargain receive the use of a satellite dish, a TV in each classroom and two VCRs per school.  The satellite dish will only receive the Channel One signal. … We understand that the purpose of advertising is to manipulate our wants and desires.  What we don't understand is why so many educators dont have a problem with exploiting a captive audience of children in this way. … Taxpayer-funded school time should not be the venue for hawking any products to students.

More articles — none of them favorable — about Channel One.



PETA Gets to Your Kids.  Radical animal-rights activists may be the last people you'd think would be planning school lessons for your children.  Well, think again.  Through its innocuous-sounding "educational" programming arm known as TeachKind, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has found a way to reach school children starting as young as kindergarten with its extremist agenda.

There has to be a Better Way for Special Education Students.  School districts around the country breathed a sigh of relief last week when the Supreme Court ruled on an arcane dispute involving the federal government's mandate for special education students.  Under federal law, public schools are required to provide a "free, appropriate public education" to all students, regardless of disability.

College Prof — a Convicted Felon — Still on Payroll at Univ. of Wisconsin.  In March a University of Wisconsin (UW) professor was convicted of three felony counts of repeated sexual contact with three minor girls, ages five, six, and nine.  This month a Wisconsin county circuit court sentenced physiology professor Roberto Coronado to eight years in prison.  But UW will not sever the employment of the professor, and will keep him on their payroll.

School Clinic Dispenses Birth Control Without Parental Consent.  Students at a Northern California school district now have low to no-cost access to contraceptives, including the controversial Plan B, at a high school clinic.

What Rob Reiner's not telling us about universal preschool:  It's a seductive proposition, but universal preschool looks to be a very expensive bad idea.

In New Zealand ...
School parking ban to fight obesity.  One idea to be explored was banning parking around schools to encourage parents to drop children some distance from the school.  This would force them to walk at least part of the way, possibly with a "walking school bus".

School board appoints manager of lewd club as president, then silences concerned citizens.  An Alliance Defense Fund allied attorney Monday [6/20/2005] asked a federal court to order the Asbury Park Board of Education to respect the free speech rights of citizens who were critical of the board for appointing as president the former manager of a sexually explicit club.

Must This Teacher Teacher Be Fired?  Albert Einstein revolutionized Physics, Alan Turing helped invent computer science and Richard Feynman won the Nobel Prize in Physics while maintaining a reputation as the best science teacher of his generation. … None of these individuals, according to the state licensing board, would be qualified to teach in an Oregon public school.

Call it what you will, it's still failure.  The word "fail" should be banned from use in British classrooms and replaced with the phrase "deferred success" to avoid demoralizing pupils, a group of teachers has proposed.

The end of self-reliance?  From childhood on, Americans are told by "experts" — therapists, self-esteem educators, grief counselors, traumatologists — that it is healthy for them continuously to take their emotional temperature, inventory their feelings and vent them.

Federal government fails history in U.S. schools.  The flap over the U.S. Department of Education consigning 300,000 copies of "Helping Your Child to Learn History" to the trash bin is evidence anew that the federal government should have no role in education.  Illiteracy and low scores in public schools are a national scandal, but it's hard to see how federal spending improves anything.

Supremacist Judges Are Running Our Schools.  On the first court day of the New Year, the Kansas Supreme Court ordered the Kansas legislature to appropriate more money for the public schools.  According to the National Center for Education Statistics, Kansas spends $8,206 per pupil per year, but the judges said the state must spend much more to give schoolchildren the "suitable" education which the state constitution guarantees.

Add choice, not just money, to education.  The Kansas Supreme Court ruled last week that the Legislature has not fulfilled its constitutional requirement to finance what it had previously defined as a "suitable" education.  "It is clear increased funding will be required," said the court, but it did not specify how much.  One approach to the dilemma is to change the definition of a "suitable" education so that the state commits itself to purchasing a less expensive mix of services.  Advocates of increased funding argue that this would "dumb down" schools.  Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, in her State of the State address, opposed this approach and called it an "end run."

Equal Rights, Equal Opportunity, and Now Equal Outcome.  In America, we have a serious problem with the public education system.  The breakdown started with the civil rights movement and the decision to use the system to socially engineer the races — the emphasis was switched from encouraging the smart children, the future leaders, to almost all of the emphasis being placed on the least of the students, guaranteeing a dumbed-down education for all the children.  The unionization of the system greatly accelerated the breakdown — the system became the teacher's domain rather than the children's place.  The breakdown has been further accelerated by the government takeover of the schools (state and federal) from the communities.  As a result the student's learning has been degraded below that of some third world countries.

Here's another incentive for homeschooling:
Teacher has kids tasting flavored condoms.  The New Mexico Health Department is standing behind a sex-education teacher in Santa Fe who encouraged ninth-graders to taste flavored condoms.  According to a report in the Santa Fe New Mexican, parent Lisa Gallegos said that when her 15-year-old daughter balked at putting a condom in her mouth, instructor Tony Escudero told her, "Come on, sweetie, have a little fun."

No Child Left Un-medicated?  The administration's "New Freedom Initiative" envisions "comprehensive mental health screening for 'consumers of all ages,' including preschool children."

"Tagging" U.S. Schoolchildren.  Houston's Spring Independent School District "is equipping 28,000 students with ID badges containing computer chips that are read when the students get on and off school buses," reported the November 17 New York Times.  "The information is fed automatically by wireless phone to the police and school administrators."  Police can monitor children from the time they leave home to their arrival on campus.

 Editor's Note:   If you think those are the limits of such monitoring, that the monitoring begins when the kid leaves the house, that the monitoring takes place only on school days, then you are naïve indeed.  If the chips can be read at the school bus stop without the assistance of the kids, then the chips can be read anywhere in town at any time of day.  And apparently every kid in the school gets such an ID badge, whether he or she rides the bus or not.  Nobody dares to speak out against an idea like this, because ostensibly "we're doing it for the children"  or  "it's for their safety."

Mandatory Student ID Cards Contain RFIDs.  Parents in a northern California public school district and civil liberties groups are urging a school district to terminate the mandatory use of Radio Frequency Identification tags by students.  A letter was sent today [2/8/2005] expressing alarm at the Brittan School District's use of mandatory ID badges that include a RFID device that tracks the students' movements.  The device transmits private information to a computer on campus whenever a student passes under one of the scanners.  The ID badges also include the student's name, photo, grade, school name, class year and the four-digit school ID number.  Students are required to prominently display the badges by wearing them around the neck at all times.

There is more material about RFID issues here.

Fingerprinting Students:  A nascent security trend in the U.S. is tracking schoolchildren when they get on and off school buses.  A school district in Spring, Texas, is using computerized ID badges to record this information, and wirelessly sending it to police headquarters.  Another school district, in Phoenix, is doing the same thing with fingerprint readers.  … Tracking kids as they get on and off school buses is a ridiculous idea.  It's expensive, invasive, and doesn't increase security very much.

Book review
Faulty Towers:  Tenure and the Structure of Higher Education.  As debate accelerates over the declining standards in higher education, academic tenure is viewed with suspicion by many, who see it merely as job protection for incompetent teachers.  Even many professors believe tenure is a guarantee of lifelong entitlement, whereby only the commission of a crime can lead to dismissal. … Tenured professors who have become incompetent are rarely dismissed, and superior teaching is rarely rewarded, although there is little to prevent universities from doing so.

School distributes satanic sex calendar.  Local school officials in a suburb of Houston, Texas, are investigating how it was possible that a school police officer handed out calendars to students that featured explicit details on satanic and sexual rituals for every day of the month.

Texas Teachers Learn to Cheat:  A loophole in the law allows them to pay as little as $3 in Social Security taxes and receive Social Security benefits worth about $5,200 a year for the rest of their lives.  How can teachers expect their students to behave honorably if they intend to cheat the Social Security system to get more benefits than they deserve?

How Textbooks Mislead Teachers:  Dr. Michael Sanera gives examples of how environmental teaching texts used in university-level courses in Wisconsin provide misleading information to prospective teachers about various environmental issues.

Finding Effective Lessons for Teachers.  There is no shortage of ideas to solve the problem of low student achievement in U.S. public schools:  Smaller class sizes, more talented teachers, more well-rounded teachers recruited from other careers, and better pay for teachers are just a few of the prescriptions offered.  But in a 1999 book titled The Teaching Gap (Free Press), UCLA psychology professor James W. Stigler and coauthor James Hiebert suggested student achievement may be stunted by a much more fundamental cause:  ineffective teaching methods.

The Harmful Impact of the TAAS System of Testing in Texas:  Texas, a state with a history of low educational achievement and low investment in public education, has put into place an accountability system that hinges on the testing of children.  The test has high stakes consequences for the children:  not passing the high school-level test is a bar to graduation (regardless of the student's accomplishments and courses passed).

A Different Look at DARE:  This site provides information and views on the DARE program not readily available through DARE or any official source.  This page is not sponsored or endorsed by "DARE America," and we do not purport to speak for DARE.

Brainwashing 101:  They are not "public schools."  They are government schools.  They are owned and operated by government.  Every employee, from the superintendent to the dishwasher in the cafeteria, is a government employee.  So, let's call them what they are.  Government schools.

Are Our Schools Concentration Campuses for Mind Destruction?  Paul Goodman contends that the idea that children can be educated through compulsory state education is a mass superstition.

No Child Left Unbrainwashed:  Public education became popular in the 18th century, when Prussian monarchs decided the best way to raise good Prussians was to control their education.  Writing for the Action Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty, doctoral student Michiel Visser of Oxford states:  "Pupils were not primarily supposed to learn reading, writing, arithmetic or anything else, but were meant to become obedient citizens.  The history of modern education, then, is a history of social control…."

The "state" of education:  The federal government now insists that every teacher must have a degree in every subject he teaches, or must pass an exam to prove he's "highly qualified" in that subject.  Washington's one-size-fits-all education policy is the real problem here.  Federal bureaucrats are treating small towns in Montana is if they were New York City and rural villages in Alaska as if they were Dallas.

 Excellent   Judging Books by Their Covers:  In 1964 the eminent physicist Richard Feynman served on the State of California's Curriculum Commission and saw how the Commission chose math textbooks for use in California's public schools.  In his acerbic memoir of that experience, Feynman analyzed the Commission's idiotic method of evaluating books, and he described some of the tactics employed by schoolbook salesmen who wanted the Commission to adopt their shoddy products.

"Gender Blind" Dorms Top List of 2003 Campus Follies:  A conservative group has released its annual list of what it calls "the top ten most shameful events" in America's educational system.  The group says the incidences of "bias and political correctness" continue to weigh down that system.

Same story:  2003 Top Ten Campus Follies:  Our nation's education system continues to be weighted down with incidences of bias and political correctness.  Young America's Foundation compiled a list of the top ten most shameful campus events in America's education system in 2003.

This is a place of learning, not a school.  Watercliffe Meadow Primary in Sheffield has adopted the new phraseology because it thinks that the word school may have negative connotations for pupils and parents.  Linda Kingdon, the head teacher, said that the change would bring the school (or place of learning) closer to real life.  But critics condemned it as laughable political correctness.

Bilingual Education Disaster in New York City:  A recent report on English Language Learners found that [only] 3.7 percent of [New York] City's 134,000 students in bilingual education programs were able to transition into mainstream classes.  Some of these students had been in bilingual education as long as 10 years.

Learning globally:  The Bush administration has begun issuing grants to help spread a United Nations-sponsored school program that aims to become a "universal curriculum" for teaching global citizenship, peace studies and equality of world cultures.

Class sizes and Academic Achievement:  Some Florida taxpayers might accept an increase if they can be assured that having fewer students in each class will increase academic achievement.  But unfortunately, the effect of class size on student achievement hasn't been proven.

A Class-ic Mistake:  Periodically, public education is seized by a fad regardless of whether it has any real effect.  One such is the rush toward reducing class size to some arbitrary number.

What Should We Expect from Smaller Classes?  In a thoughtful review of studies of class size and academic performance in Scientific American [November 2001], Ronald G. Ehrenberg and colleagues point out class-size reduction has one obvious drawback:  "It costs plenty."  They note the state of California alone has spent more than $1.5 billion annually over the past several years to reduce class sizes to 20 or fewer in kindergarten through third grade ... with only a "tiny effect."

Should Classes Be Smaller … Or Simply More Orderly?  A recent research study highlights the importance of teacher quality and raises questions about the cost-effectiveness of class size reduction proposals.

No Preschooler Left Behind:  Thomas Watkins, Michigan's superintendent of public schools, is on a mission to expand his authority beyond the traditional K-12 boundaries.  If given his way, every child in the state—practically from birth—would become the exclusive property of state authorities.  Of course, Watkins doesn't quite phrase it that way.  Rather than acknowledge his desire to forcibly remove children from their homes, the superintendent speaks of "investment" in society's future.

The Intellectual Rape of Oakland's Schools:  This week, Dan Siegel and the Oakland school board led their corrupt and failing school in an exercise in anti-American propaganda, turning over all of Oakland's schoolchildren, from the first grade to high school, to the tender mercies of radical ideologues and their rants against the war in Iraq, the president and America.

A world without "F's":  School's out.  What did your children learn this year? Across the country, one poisonous lesson was pumped into the systems of self-esteem-inflated students:  There is no such thing as failure.

See Dick and Jane Weep:  Principals and teachers traded in phonics for histrionics.

My name is Adolf:  Among the patriotic lesson plans for 9-11 was one proposed by the National Council for Social Studies, which recommends a short story titled "My Name is Osama."  Calculatedly inciting hatred toward white American boys, the story is about a nasty little boy, "Todd," who taunts an Iraqi immigrant named "Osama."

School-to-Work = The Reason Our Schools Are Failing:  When fully implemented, School-to-Work will result in:  1) loss of personal control over daily life, 2) loss of local control over education, 3) loss of quality, academic rich curricula, and 4) loss of freedom as a free market driven economy in a constitutional republic.

How to Understand the Double-Speak of the Educrats:  The education establishment has learned to use words that have double meanings or have no known definition in the English language.  Consequently, moms and dads who stand in the arena, ready for battle are often disarmed by what seems to be a foreign language.

Restructuring Education For the Global Village:  Academic education has been replaced with indoctrination programs.  The process is designed to change the attitude, values and beliefs of the children — away from traditional American values of God and Country.  Away from the family; away from the American work ethic; away from competition.

Saving the Children:  It is sometimes said, by public school supporters, that if some children are taken out of the system to go to other schools, the public schools will deteriorate.  And so, the thinking goes, parents have a "duty to society" to keep their kids in the public schools, even though they have already deteriorated almost beyond recognition.  How absurd that the government schools think of the children as serving the schools' or society's needs instead of the other way around.

Learning About Learning:  No matter how hard we try, we can't deliberately forget something we have learned, and that is catastrophic if we learn that we can't learn."  One of the most powerful lessons schools teach children is "You are not a good learner."  Despite the knowledge that children's brains are superb learning instruments, schools always claim that "failure" is a kind of sickness.  Real or imaginary inadequacies are given clinical-sounding labels like "dyslexia," "ADHD," etc., to create the impression that physical abnormalities are involved.

Education or Indoctrination?  Largely unknown to the public, the whole notion of education has been radically transformed over the years, so that it no longer means conveying the accumulated knowledge and understanding of a civilization, but shaping children's psyches and indoctrinating their minds with politically correct ideologies.

"Sexual Orientation" Codes are Harmful to Schools:  "'Sexual orientation' school codes are invariably used to advance one-sided, pro-'gay' programs and classroom teachings," said Peter LaBarbera, senior policy analyst at the Culture and Family Institute.  "This bias violates parents' rights and the beliefs of the majority of students who oppose homosexuality."

California Democrats Refuse to Notify Parents of Sex Ed Speakers:  A Democrat-controlled committee of the California State Legislature has killed a bill that would have required public schools to notify parents if outside speakers were invited to discuss sexual matters with students — even young students.

Educators Pull History Text for "Inappropriate" Material:  The chairwoman of the Texas Board of Education is defending the withdrawal of a textbook they say contains inaccurate and inappropriate information.  The textbook, called Out of Many:  A History of the American People, is published by Prentice Hall.  A passage in the book is entitled "Cowboys and Prostitutes."  Grace Shore, who heads the State Board of Education, says the textbook was pulled because it not only was inappropriate for children, but it contained information that is questionable.

Fort Lewis College Cancels Pornography Course After State Wide Criticism

Classes in safe sex are ineffective, says study:  Sex education classes do not reduce the number of teenagers who practice unsafe sex, according to research that suggests parents can play a more influential role.

Teacher fired for showing "graphic" movies:  School Board asserts that he had shown students movies with graphic sexual content and profanity without notifying their parents, and that he discussed with students phallic symbolism in the Christian church.

Schools' Drastic Measures QuestionedIn an effort to keep schools free of drugs and violence, authorities are resorting to heavy-handed measures that impinge on students' privacy rights and chill the learning environment, says one observer.

S.F. Schools Urge Kids to Skip for Rally:  The San Francisco Board of Education wants its high school students to skip school Thursday to show support for its pet cause:  affirmative action.

Who let these dogs out?  The awful truth about government Web sites for children.

Group Blasts Abstinence Message In Schools:  Many schools have adopted an abstinence message as a way to discourage teenagers from engaging in sexual activity, and the Alan Guttmacher Institute isn't happy about it.

The Autism Dragnet:  Department of Education Rule 51. A legal case in Nebraska shows the dangers in creating a government-mandated dragnet that can subject all sorts of children to hours of disagreeable, ineffective or even counterproductive treatment for something they do not have.

"Yummy" foods to tempt school truants:  Schools in New York will serve ice cream on Mondays and Fridays to encourage children not to truant [sic].  Officials hope offering the treat on the days with the highest truancy rate will stop kids missing classes.

 Editor's Note:   Truant is not a verb!

The Creativity-Knowledge Dichotomy:  I saw a bumpersticker [sic] the other day which said, "Creativity Is More Important Than Knowledge."  You can't separate creativity from knowledge.  The two are intertwined.

Invention Becomes the Mother of Necessity:  Technology in the Classroom:  Rather than seeing an achievement gap shrinking, some technology may actually serve to separate students further apart.  A new class system may emerge, those who understand and use technology and those who do not.  If a child cannot read or reads at such a low level to be functionally illiterate, technology matters very little.

Guess What's Going On In School!  While the education debate in Congress revolves around standards, testing, accountability and spending, 3,000 miles away on the Left Coast, very different factors have leapt to center stage.

New schools for a new world order The fundamental goal of socialism is the establishment of a sociopolitical milieu where the individual is controlled by the state from the cradle to the grave.  It seems this dream has taken a few steps closer to reality for young children living in Washington, DC.  The City Council of the District of Columbia is considering a bill designed to lower the age of compulsory school attendance from five to three years old.  WorldNet Daily points out that even children as young as two unfortunate to have their birthdays fall after the commencement of the academic year will be mandated to participate.

Compulsory education for 2-year-olds?  D.C. councilman proposes forcing toddlers into classrooms.

Nosy Pupil Surveys Rile Parents

Wicca [witchcraft] and ecology debated in Michigan school controversyAmid allegations of teaching Wiccan and pagan religion to fourth graders, the fate of an environmental school program in this quiet city on the St. Clair River rests in the hands of school officials.

Students get Big Brother identity cards.

Mandatory Student Assembly Stirs ControversyA California high school teacher has found himself at the center of controversy after denouncing mandatory student assemblies staged by the student National Organization for Women Club, the Black Student Union and a "Multi-Cultural Assembly," among others.

Half a century after Brown:  The key fallacy underlying the civil rights vision was that all black economic lags were due to racial discrimination.  That assumption has survived to this day, in the courts, in the media, in academia, and above all in politics.

Half a century after Brown: Part II.  Medical authorities have long recognized that a quack remedy that is harmless in itself can nevertheless be fatal in its effects, if it keeps sick people from getting the treatment that can cure them.  Racial mixing and matching has been the great quack remedy for the educational lags of black school children that has substituted for higher standards and harder work.

Half a century after Brown: Part III.  Although Brown v. Board of Education dealt with race and with schools, its judicial philosophy spread rapidly to issues having nothing to do with race or schools.  In the half century since Brown, judges at all levels have become unelected legislators imposing the vision of the political left across a wide spectrum.



Ritalin:

Ritalin, also known as Methylphenidate, a Schedule II substance, has a high potential for abuse and produces many of the same effects as cocaine or the amphetamines.  The abuse of this substance has been documented among narcotic addicts who dissolve the tablets in water and inject the mixture.

In my humble opinion, if kids spent half as much time reading as they spend in front of a television, there would be far less demand for drugs like Ritalin.

Note:  Schedule II of the Controlled Substances Act contains those substances that have the highest abuse potential and dependence profile of all drugs that have medical utility.*

Numerous reasons to avoid Ritalin®.

CPS Seizes 7-Year-Old After Parents Dispute ADHD Diagnosis.  Advocates of the federal school regime claim it was established to educate America's children.  Apparently, it also looks to usurp the natural right of parents to decide questions of medical treatment of their children, as well.  Camden Maple is seven years old and sometimes, according to his mom and dad, he is "rambunctious."  Administrators at his public school, however, insist that Camden is "mentally unstable." [...] One in 20 adolescents in America are diagnosed with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).  Rather than addressing that child's needs, the stigmatizing and system-summoning label of "mental instability" is slapped onto the child, and with it, years of mandatory therapy and medication.

Does the left have a drug problem?  Drug use within the entertainment industry and the mindless plebeians who worship them is well known.  No news there, but what about the overwhelmingly liberal academia or media?  I suspect that drugs could be playing a significant role, especially among those susceptible to the pressures of "publish or perish" or like pressures.  In 2010, CBS's 60 Minutes broadcast a report about the use of ADD/ADHD drugs, such as Ritalin and Adderall, in universities.  In that report, Katie Couric interviewed Brandon Adams, who taught economics at Harvard University.  Regarding the prevalence of this type of drug use in academia, Adams stated, "I think it's extremely common.  It's extremely common in all of the professions from what I've seen."  Before dismissing ADHD stimulant drug use in academia as being inconsequential or insignificant, the reader should take time to note some of these drugs' side effects: [...]

Drugging toddlers becoming big business for Big Pharma with over a million kids under 5 on brain-damaging psych meds.  Toddlers as young as 18-months-old are being treated like experimental rats, drugged up with some of the most brain-damaging, life-altering psychotic pills.  These are the kinds of pills that cause wild delusions, aggressive impulses, erratic behavior, or in some cases, cause violent and suicidal thoughts.  Why do parents, doctors, psychologists and neurologists continue to disregard these appalling side effects?

Education as a Cause of Mental Health Issues.  It's one of the most bizarre and destructive events in American history.  Circa 1931, public schools started using Whole Word to teach reading.  (This method has many other names, such as Look-say, Whole Language, Dolch Words, and Sight Words.)  Almost immediately, children started having psychological problems — i.e., mental health issues.  The typical pattern is that a boy will reach the second or third grade and realize that his teachers and family think he is, in effect, retarded because he can't do this simple thing that most other kids can do.  In fourth grade he will be labeled dyslexic.  In fifth grade he will be declared to have ADHD and be in need of Ritalin.  This story, in endless variations, has descended upon millions of Americans, on males more than females (so it is a component of the War on Boys).

Let me guess:  Fatherless undisciplined food stamp bastards with a babysitter named Spongebob Squarepants.
Why so many kids can't sit still in school today.  The Centers for Disease Control tells us that in recent years there has been a jump in the percentage of young people diagnosed with Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder, commonly known as ADHD:  7.8 percent in 2003 to 9.5 percent in 2007 and to 11 percent in 2011.  The reasons for the rise are multiple, and include changes in diagnostic criteria, medication treatment and more awareness of the condition. [...] Angela Hanscom, a pediatric occupational therapist and the founder of TimberNook, a nature-based development program designed to foster creativity and independent play outdoors in New England, suggests yet another reason more children are being diagnosed with ADHD, whether or not they really have it:  the amount of time kids are forced to sit while they are in school.  This appeared on the TimberNook blog.

Americans no Longer Live in a Scientific Society.  [P]eople coming to therapists for mental health issues are often prescribed drugs which end up creating more problems then the person originally had.  For example, 90% of maniac shooters are said to have been on psychiatric medication, or coming off of it, and under the care of a therapist. [...] We have a very dangerous crisis — while 20% of US population is on psych meds, almost 100% of the violent shooters are from this group.

New Report: 1 in 13 Schoolchildren Now On Prescription Psych Meds.  While common prescriptions such as Ritalin and Adderall do help many children, the National Institute of Mental Health reports that they are often incorrectly prescribed to kids who have been misdiagnosed with ADHD and may actually have a different condition (or no condition at all).  Additionally, these medications can have harmful side effects, the long term implications of which the medical community does not yet fully understand.

Are Schools Asking to Drug Kids for Better Test Scores?  In the past two decades, the number of children diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder has nearly doubled.  One in five American boys receives a diagnosis by age 17.  More than 70% of those who are diagnosed — millions of children — are prescribed drugs.  A new book, "The ADHD Explosion" by Stephen Hinshaw and Richard Scheffler, looks at this extraordinary increase.

ADHD Does Not Exist.  After a long career treating patients complaining of such problems as short attention spans and an inability to focus, [neurologist Richard] Saul is convinced that ADHD is a collection of symptoms, not a disease, and shouldn't be listed in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.  Treating ADHD as a disease is a huge mistake, according to Saul.

Why Ritalin Still Rules.  Almost 14 years ago, the inaugural issue of Policy Review under newly appointed editor Tod Lindberg ran an essay of mine called "Why Ritalin Rules."  It observed that American children were taking psychotropic drugs at (then-) record rates; that some doctors and other experts believed methylphenidate (the generic name for Ritalin) was being over-prescribed; that the disorder for which it and related stimulants were given — Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder — included a uniquely protean symptoms checklist; and that the line between science and advocacy was hard to find in the bustling pediatric zone of the psychotropic universe.

The Selling of Attention Deficit Disorder.  After more than 50 years leading the fight to legitimize attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, Keith Conners could be celebrating. [...] But Dr. Conners did not feel triumphant this fall as he addressed a group of fellow A.D.H.D. specialists in Washington.  He noted that recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that the diagnosis had been made in 15 percent of high school-age children, and that the number of children on medication for the disorder had soared to 3.5 million from 600,000 in 1990.

Are too many kids taking antipsychotic drugs?  The number of children taking powerful antipsychotic drugs has nearly tripled over the last 10 to 15 years, according to recent research.  The increase comes not because of an epidemic of schizophrenia or other forms of serious mental illness in children, but because doctors are increasingly prescribing the drugs to treat behavior problems, a use not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  And a disproportionate number of those prescriptions are written for poor and minority children, some as young as age 2.

CDC: More Than 20% of 14-Year-Old Boys Diagnosed With ADHD.  More than 20 percent of the 14-year-old boys in the United States have been diagnosed at some point in their lives with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a newly released study by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  The study also said more than 20 percent of 11-year-old boys had been diagnosed with ADHD at some point in their lives.  The study indicated that American boys were 125 percent more likely than girls to be diagnosed with ADHD, and that boys were 127 percent more likely than girls to be medicated for it.

Psychiatric Meds: Prescription for Murder?  "In virtually every mass school shooting during the past 15 years, the shooter has been on or in withdrawal from psychiatric drugs," observed Lawrence Hunter of the Social Security Institute.  "Yet, federal and state governments continue to ignore the connection between psychiatric drugs and murderous violence, preferring instead to exploit these tragedies in an oppressive and unconstitutional power grab to snatch guns away from innocent, law-abiding people who are guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution the right to own and bear arms to deter government tyranny and to use firearms in self defense against any miscreant who would do them harm."

Nearly Every Mass Shooting In The Last 20 Years Shares One Thing In Common, and It's NOT Weapons.  The overwhelming evidence points to the signal largest common factor in all of these incidents is the fact that all of the perpetrators were either actively taking powerful psychotropic drugs or had been at some point in the immediate past before they committed their crimes.

Diagnosis: Human.  The news that 11 percent of school-age children now receive a diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder — some 6.4 million — gave me a chill.  My son David was one of those who received that diagnosis.  In his case, he was in the first grade.  Indeed, there were psychiatrists who prescribed medication for him even before they met him.  One psychiatrist said he would not even see him until he was medicated.

Conformism
Medicate Your Children to Guarantee Compliance.  Aside from the obvious social benefits of having more disabled children who are qualified for even more benefits, the medicating of these children is helping to stimulate the Pharmaceutical industry at a rate of more than $7 billion per year.

Evidence Mounts of Mass Shooting Causes: Sociopathic Progressivism & Drugs.  It seems the root causes of this twisted behavior include, at least by affinity, the ideological motivations of, or even pathological drives for, political or sociological causes shared by the progressive "left" — mixed with psychotropic drugs — and that, especially among but not limited to adolescent men.  I am not joking; deadly serious.  This brief compilation may serve as an introduction.  I have seen sound reports on numerous of these instances.

Stop and think - and you will realise that banning guns is a waste of time.  Some suggest he may have been on one of the many powerful and poorly tested 'medications' that modern medicine casually inflicts on bored children who fidget in class, or on people who are just unhappy in various ways.  There is, as yet, no clear answer.  There may never be, as the authorities and the media just aren't interested enough.  One of the Columbine High School killers, Eric Harris, was on such medication (as we know thanks to a Freedom of Information inquiry), and the other, Dylan Klebold, may have been taking mind-altering pills at some point before he acted, though his medical records are sealed — inexplicably, given the importance of the information.

Is Ritalin the Root of Student Violence?  As communities reel from one massive act of student violence after another, the nation looks for answers.  How many are looking at the schools themselves as the conduit through which millions of students are drugged with mind-altering drugs?

What Ritalin is doing to our children's heads:  Prescriptions for methylphenidate rose to 661,500 last year — from 382,000 in 2005.  The question naturally arises:  do all these children have something wrong with them or are they simply being fitted with a chemical straitjacket to make them easier for their parents to manage without resorting to good old-fashioned discipline?

From Medical Dependency to Dependency on the Welfare State.  Color me extremely skeptical when the number of children ostensibly requiring regular doses of mind-altering medication reaches 5.4 million.  Even more so after I read a Washington Post article by California child and adolescent psychiatrist Elizabeth J. Roberts, who contended her colleagues are "now misdiagnosing and overmedicating children for ordinary defiance and misbehavior.

Ritalin May Cause Long-Lasting Changes In Brain-Cell Function.  Scientists at the University at Buffalo have shown that the drug methylphenidate, the generic form of Ritalin, which physicians have considered to have only short-term effects, appears to initiate changes in brain function that remain after the therapeutic effects have dissipated.  The changes appear to be similar to those that occur with other stimulant drugs such as amphetamine and cocaine.

Doctors told to curb use of Ritalin in hyperactive children.  Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) should be treated with drugs such as Ritalin only in severe cases and never when they are younger than 5, under official health guidelines issued today.  Widespread concerns that medication is used too freely to calm hyperactive children have been recognised by two clinical practice watchdogs, which are now advising doctors not to prescribe drugs whenever possible.

Reading vs. Ritalin:  There's so much talk of "attention deficit disorder" in children today.  The unquestioned, never disputed premise is that brain chemistry causes young people not to pay attention.  Yet attention deficits were never such problems in earlier eras.  What gives?  A major factor is the lack of reading.

Ritalin and Russian Roulette:  What parents are not being told by psychiatrists who prescribe the drug and the school nurses who give it to the kids, that taking Ritalin is like playing Russian Roulette, simply because nobody can be sure what the side-effects will be. … We only hear about the worst tragedies.  Skin rashes, headaches, dizziness, nausea, and palpitations don't make the headlines.  They just make the users miserable.

Experts Urge Stern ADHD Drug Warnings.  In a surprise move, an advisory panel urged the FDA to place strong warnings on all stimulant drugs used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) because of a potential risk of heart attacks, strokes, and sudden death.

No child left unmedicated.  Big Brother is on the march.  A plan to subject all children to mental health screening is under way, and pharmaceutical companies are gearing up for bigger sales of psychotropic drugs.  Like most liberal big-spending ideas, this one was slipped into the law under cover of soft semantics.  Its genesis was the New Freedom Commission on Mental Health created by President George W. Bush in 2002.

Academic Morning-After Profits:  As AIA has documented, some groups remain skeptical of the expansive definitions surrounding Attention Deficit Disorder diagnoses.  Others are concerned by the rapid expansion of the use of psychotropic drugs among children.  The investigation of the Harvard doctors, two of about 30 university-affiliated scientists under suspicion, is being spearheaded by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), a Senator known for his fiery investigation into university endowments and transparency efforts.

In Australia:
Two-year-olds now on Ritalin.  Toddlers as young as two are being diagnosed with ADHD and prescribed drugs including Ritalin.  Figures obtained by The Daily Telegraph reveal 311 children in NSW aged five and under depend on controversial medication, including 58 four-year-olds and 13 three-year-olds.  Health Department figures show that, nationally, doctors have prescribed ADHD drugs to five toddlers aged only two, despite possible side effects.

Ritalin is more potent than cocaine.  The children's drug Ritalin has a more potent effect on the brain than cocaine, a study has found.  Using brain imaging, scientists have found that, in pill form, Ritalin — taken by thousands of British children and four million in the United States — occupies more of the neural transporters responsible for the "high" experienced by addicts than smoked or injected cocaine.  The research may alarm parents whose children have been prescribed Ritalin as a solution to Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder.

Ritalin poses child crime risk.  Children who use Ritalin for a long period of time could be more at risk of delinquency and substance abuse, a study has found. Doctors are suggesting children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) should take a break from medication after three years of use.

Doping our kids:  This boost in brainbenders smacks of chemical parenting.

The Therapeutic Nanny State.  This new proposal threatens to force millions of kids to undergo psychiatric screening, whether their parents consent or not.  At issue is the fundamental right of parents to decide what medical treatment is appropriate for their children.

Ritalin use in Virginia is "astronomical":  Portsmouth ranks in the top 1 percent of communities nationwide for use of Ritalin, the drug prescribed to treat attention deficit disorders, a new study by a local researcher has found.

Ritalin:  the Government Drug.  Ritalin plays a significant part in the government school system's war against parents and children.  When school employees and psychiatrists recommend mind-altering behavior-modifying drugs for our children, it's not to benefit the children, it's for the convenience of the schools and the teachers.  The government attitude is that public school children are its property to do with as it chooses.

Kids popping pills:  According to the infelicitously titled medical journal Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, doctors are prescribing Ritalin for attention deficit disorder as well as several antidepressants with growing frequency.

Blackmailing Parents To Keep Kids On Drugs:  The underlying problem here is the notion that children belong first to the state — that they're best "socialized" in state-run institutions, and that biological parents are allowed to retain custody only at the discretion of school and "child welfare" officials.

A Different Kind of Drug War:  There's a different kind of drug war going on that doesn't get the kind of attention as the one in the streets of America.  In fact, those who are involved in a massive program of drug distribution are highly regarded and very well paid.  They are our nation's teachers and the legions of "counselors" who have invaded our schools.

Ritalin is Poison:  Why is America suddenly experiencing an explosion of new mental diseases and disorders never heard of thirty years ago?  Why are children seemingly out of control, refusing to listen to parents and teachers, even driven to violence?

Study:  ADHD drugs send thousands to ERs.  Accidental overdoses and side effects from attention deficit drugs likely send thousands of children and adults to emergency rooms, according to the first national estimates of the problem.  Scientists at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated problems with the stimulant drugs drive nearly 3,100 people to ERs each year.

Is Ritalin the Root of Student Violence?  As communities reel from one massive act of student violence after another, the nation looks for answers.  How many are looking at the schools themselves as the conduit through which millions of students are drugged with mind-altering drugs?

Tracking Your Digital Trail.  In 2004, Congress funded the New Freedom Initiative (NFI) — a Marxist-sounding moniker detailing a plan to screen every man, woman, and child in America for "mental illness." ... Since the NFI program went national, the nation has seen violent incidents at West Paducah, Kentucky; Springfield, Oregon; Edinboro, Pennsylvania; Red Lake, Minnesota; Virginia Tech, Virginia; Binghamton, New York; and more.  Nearly every perpetrator was already on a psychotropic drug — usually a cocktail of such drugs, in an attempt to offset side effects.  In other words, if Ritalin makes an inattentive kid "hyper," then let's give him a tranquilizer to calm him down.  If that makes him sleepy, maybe he needs an anti-seizure medication to keep him awake, and so on, until his brains are scrambled eggs. ... Mandatory drugging of nonconformists, slow learners, and naughty kids is now part and parcel of a nasty and little-publicized agenda to engineer uniformity of opinion without appearing blatant about it.

Battling ADHD disinformation:  Conservatives are sure it is a sign of parental laziness.  Liberals are sure it is big business, in the form of drug companies, conspiring to ensnare large numbers of American children.  Observers of no particular outlook are nonetheless likely to believe that ADHD is either a fraud or an invention.

A veteran educator charges NEA, APA, and drug companies are in cahoots.
ADHD -- a "Concocted" Disorder?  A Christian educator says the National Education Association has teamed up the psychiatrists and pharmaceutical companies to promote the sale of 25 different psychotropic drugs to children.  Twenty percent of America's 50 million public school students have been declared mentally ill and are on prescription drugs like Ritalin, Adderrall, and Prozac.

ADD is "not a real condition":  The legitimacy of ADHD as a medical condition is questioned in a new report.  The report, commissioned by the Youth Affairs Network of Queensland [Australia], has called for a moratorium on and inquiry into the use of the amphetamine-based drugs Ritalin and Dexamphetamine to treat ADHD — diagnosed in thousands of Australian children.

Kids On ADHD Drugs -- Dangerous Path To Addiction.  Experts say the stimulant drugs prescribed for the treatment of ADHD are not only dangerous, they are highly addictive.  And although no drug has been approved for the treatment of autism, drugs are routinely prescribed off-label to treat autistic children.

On the other hand... Time to Focus Correctly on ADHD:  Anyone who believes Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is not a legitimate disease clearly doesn't have it.  Nor do they experience the agony of watching their children struggle with its challenges on a daily basis.

ADHD Drugs Linked to Sudden Death.  Ann Hohmann is one of a handful of parents across the country who believes that their children's sudden death was due to the use of drugs to control ADHD.  And she said she hopes a new study released this morning, which suggests that the use of stimulants is tied to an increased risk of sudden unexplained death among children and teens, will open the eyes of the public to what she sees as the cause of her son's demise.

Wait -- it gets worse.
California doping our youths.  I was horrified to read recently that it is increasingly common in California to treat children diagnosed with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) with marijuana.  California voters passed a law allowing doctors to recommend medical marijuana to their patients, including those under the age of 18.  The law allows doctors to recommend marijuana "for any ... illness for which marijuana provides relief."

Related:
ADHD drugs suspected of hurting Canadian kids.  A Toronto Star investigation has found a growing number of doctors, nurses, pharmacists and parents are reporting that they believe attention deficit drugs are causing major health problems in patients, many as young as 6 and 7 years old.  The federal government is not listening.  Health Canada, which collects these adverse reaction reports, does not alert the public to the magnitude of these side effects.  This is because the regulator has not analyzed the data it collects.  It has allowed the industry to largely police itself.

Attention Disorder or Not, Pills to Help in School.  When Dr. Michael Anderson hears about his low-income patients struggling in elementary school, he usually gives them a taste of some powerful medicine:  Adderall. [...] "I don't have a whole lot of choice," said Dr. Anderson, a pediatrician for many poor families in Cherokee County, north of Atlanta.  "We've decided as a society that it's too expensive to modify the kid's environment.  So we have to modify the kid."

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Updated May 17, 2017.

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