Tag Archives: Education

Education- The Most Expensive, Least Valued Thing Govenment Can Mess Up

That which is given without being earned is not appreciated. And that which the government gives away is first stolen from others who earned.

A free education is perhaps the least valued of all things granted by the government. After decades of government-run K-12 education, the workforce development folks are looking to government-run community college and eventually universal college education to prepare students for real work.

How can government-run education be any better? Let government run the entire education system?

Here are some experiences I have had lately with the homework the government has prescribed to my 5th grader.

In Social Studies, as per the curriculum for 5th graders in Tennessee, he has been learning about the Civil War and significant figures of the war. No timeline of events or battles. Just that it happened, some people were involved with it, and it led to the abolition of slavery. I would expect history would include the history of something like the American Civil War. But there is only this humanistic, interpretive standpoint being presented, in a way that boils everything down to the simplest possible terms. He is being taught what everyone who has heard about the Civil War says today. And that is the educational system’s goal- plant these seeds that will stick with students for a lifetime, a superficial, simplistic version of very complex times, issues, and individuals.

In Reading (ELA, or English Language Arts), they have been reading the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, a United Nations document adopted in 1948, that is a humanistic document based on relative truth, not absolute truth. It says, as many in the media today have tried to say, that our rights are granted by government. Because this is a document about human rights, then the impression to be gained is that government is the arbiter of what is good. Government did not teach, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” nor did it teach, “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” No, the God that first taught, “Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, soul, mind, and strength,” is the one who taught us how to treat other people. This is the very thing I feared when I first read about the change our incoming superintendent of schools was making to the reading comprehension curriculum, and a teacher linked to the “EngageNY,” New York’s program for ELA, as an example. When I asked that teacher via a public comment on her Facebook post, if the reading requirements would be the same as New York’s, my question and the link to EngageNY were deleted.

In math, my son has been working problems involving decimals in multiple forms, one of which is called extended form. Here is an example: 6,500.6=6(10^100)+5(10^10)+6(1/10). For those who haven’t seen exponents notated this way, that is 10 to the 100th power, and 10 to the 10th power, respectively. He’s great at math, by the way. However, at my suggestion, my son asked his math teacher respectfully, “When will we ever use expanded for in real life?” She responded, “When you count money.” My son may have oversimplified her answer, but truly, if this is how money counting is being taught, it is no wonder most people require a machine to tell them correct change owed.

The Chamber of Commerce, one of the very institutions lamenting that lack of a ready workforce to attract new industry, supports Common Core curriculum. The education system is bent on testing and teaching to the test. A 4-year college degree is still the ticket to success as reported in government schools, and the State now pays for 2-year degrees as a way to propel any and all students toward a Bachelor’s degree. Tennessee wants to get to 55% of all Tennesseans having a 4-year degree.

But you can’t have it both ways. You can have government-indoctrinated, social justice-styled drones, or you can have well-educated, well-informed, and skillful graduates that are ready to take on a variety of expanded educational opportunities. As long as politicians and cronies present government as the solution, and as long as the average American believes them, we will continue this spiral. And we haven’t even gotten onto the subject of corporate welfare…

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Common Core Ignores Science and Social Studies

We learned how undervalued science and social studies has become in parent-teacher conference #2. There are no text books, readers, primers, or curricula for science or social studies. The teacher is doing research on the internet to find topics to teach. Instead of history, they are learning about symbolism in the Statue of Liberty. Science, same thing. The teacher lamented the time when they were able to teach concepts and do experiments for science, with a text to guide the process.

I remarked that I can understand integrating science and social studies with reading, but without providing resources, it’s piecemeal and meaningless. In a society that decries “science deniers,” we actually are raising up a generation of science illiterates. How can we keep pace on the world stage, as Common Core proponents claim they want to do, when science is not even taught?

20120611-211801.jpgBut consider this- I can look back and see how science education was used to push an agenda when I was a student. I remember hearing about the hole in the ozone layer that was growing and was going to allow the sun’s unfiltered radiation to burn us up. I don’t know what happened to that ozone hole, but I never hear about it anymore! What is being accomplished by neglecting science education now? I’m afraid it defers science education until children become youths who are able to be filled with nothing but agenda driven science, at an age where they can and will do something about it. Our youths are being indoctrinated early to follow a line of pseudo-truth and see themselves as the champions of it, and it is based on emotion, not facts.

Learning about history, cultures, and civics has immense value to us in a free nation. And these can be taught to children in an age appropriate and interesting way. There has always been the complaint that history has been defined by the victors throughout history. The picture we get of our past is tainted by the lens of whoever held power. We know this to be true in civilizations throughout time. However, what of our own history? History hails our nation as a shining city on a hill. We are an experiment in liberty that has succeeded. I’m afraid too many do not want our children to know this. In the history of the United States, we do not have a heritage of destroying all traces of cultural or political minorities like other world powers. We know from whence we have come, good, bad, and ugly. What could possibly be the reason to not teach this?

Education has become divorced from absolute truth. History, wether describing man’s greatest feats or his worst failures, is established fact. Science that is science indeed represents the reality of the world God created. Students are being taught that all that matters is how you feel and how you justify it. To be able to confirm when life begins or debunk climate change would not benefit the agenda government has.

I am not a conspiratorial person. But I am having a harder time justifying the disparities I see in our education system, which are hitting closer and closer to home with me by the day. I have a lot more that I will be writing on this subject, but what do you have to say? Let me know your experiences and concerns in the comments.