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Karl Marx

The enduring lie propounded by teachers’ unions throughout America is that more money will produce better educated students.  It hasn’t and it won’t.  But that lie has continued for decades, so that today, anyone who criticizes the clearly dismal public education performance is called “anti-education” or worse.  You “hate kids,” they say.   Such tactics are simply bullying.   Intimidation and bullying are unprofessional and have no place in any debate.

Consider the Kansas City Education Experiment.  In 1985, Federal District Judge Russell Clark decreed that students in Kansas City, Missouri weren’t getting a good education because funding wasn’t adequate.  So he decreed that $1.5 billion dollars be spent for the good of the kids.  It didn’t help. Nevertheless, teachers’ unions endlessly continue their mantra: “Public education needs to be fully funded.”  Obviously this is impossible; they never get enough money.  Never.

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The results from the 2012 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), which are being released on Tuesday, show that teenagers in the U.S. slipped from 25th to 31st in math since 2009; from 20th to 24th in science; and from 11th to 21st in reading, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, which gathers and analyzes the data in the U.S.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/pisa-rankings-2013-12#ixzz3VX1IL4pP
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The New York City Union of Federated Teachers created its own charter school, The UFT Charter School, promising stellar results by applying their expertise and professionalism. The New York City School Board ranks the UFT Charter School at the 5th percentile out of 1168 elementary schools in New York City. http://schools.nyc.gov

UFT Charter School

Contrast this with the four Icahn Charter Schools, created by business magnate, Carl C. Icahn, which are ranked by the NYC School Board at the 99th, 96th, 88th, and 100th percentiles, respectively. This ranking is based primarily on student achievement, a ranking system alien to teachers’ unions.

Carl Icahn Schools

“A page of history is worth a volume of logic.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court (1804-1898)

“In 1950, we spent (in 1989 dollars) $1,333 per student. In 1989 we spent $4931. As John Silber, the President of Boston University, has written, ‘It is troubling that this nearly fourfold increase in real spending has brought no improvement. It is scandalous that it has not prevented substantial decline.’ ”  – William J. Bennett, former Secretary of Education, in The De-Valuing of America

“When school children start paying union dues, that ‘s when I’ll start representing the interests of school children.” – Albert Shanker, President of the American Federation of Teachers

“It’s time to admit that public education operates like a planned economy, a bureaucratic system in which everybody’s role is spelled out in advance and there are few incentives for innovation and productivity. It’s no surprise that our school system doesn’t improve; it more resembles the communist economy than our own market economy.” – Albert Shanker

Many professors have told me, they do not believe that the public would support the research mission of the university, so the university has to hide how it spends its money.  – Bob Samuels, ― “The Solution They Won’t Try”,  Inside Higher Ed, June 4, 2010.

Embracing a socialist-globalist worldview that opposes free enterprise and representative government, the new, outcome-based national curriculum is precisely what the Father of Progressive Education foresaw. In 1928, Professor John Dewey of the Teachers’ College at Columbia University identified public education’s political function—that being “to construct communist society.” The next year Dewey added, “We are in for some kind of socialism, call it by whatever name we please.”

John Dewey, a Fabian Socialist, introduced a new pedagogy – “progressive education,” with us today.

Government schools are the Left’s primary institutions for indoctrinating neglected children with the “Marxist Model.” “The education of all children, from the moment that they can get along without a mother’s care, shall be in state institutions at state expense.” – Karl Marx

Public school growth

www.edchoice.org

“Public education is a socialist monopoly, a real one.” – The Late Milton Friedman, Professor and Nobel Laureate in Economics

Marx’s disciple, Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, concurred: “Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.”

How’s that working out for the Left? According to Pew Research, in 2011 the 18-29 age group — that third category of Obama’s most loyal constituency which put him over the top — had a more favorable view of socialism than of capitalism.

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I may be a teacher, but I’m not an educator

From The Wall Street Journal, July 25, 1991
By John Taylor Gatto

I’ve taught public school for 26 years but I just can’t do it anymore. For years I asked the local school board and superintendent to let me teach a curriculum that doesn’t hurt kids, but they had other fish to fry. So I’m going to quit, I think.
I’ve come slowly to understand what it is I really teach: A curriculum of confusion, class position, arbitrary justice, vulgarity, rudeness, disrespect for privacy, indifference to quality, and utter dependency. I teach how to fit into a world I don’t want to live in.
I just can’t do it anymore. I can’t train children to wait to be told what to do; I can’t train people to drop what they are doing when a bell sounds; I can’t persuade children to feel some justice in their class placement when there isn’t any, and I can’t persuade children to believe teachers have valuable secrets they can acquire by becoming our disciples. That isn’t true.

Government schooling is the most radical adventure in history. It kills the family by monopolizing the best times of childhood and by teaching disrespect for home and parents.
An exaggeration? Hardly. Parents aren’t meant to participate in our form of schooling, rhetoric to the contrary. My orders as schoolteacher are to make children fit an animal training system, not to help each find his or her personal path.
The whole blueprint of school procedure is Egyptian, not Greek or Roman. It grows from the faith that human value is a scarce thing, represented symbolically by the narrow peak of a pyramid.
That idea passed into American history through the Puritans. It found its “scientific” presentation in the bell curve, along which talent supposedly apportions itself by some Iron Law of biology.
It,s a religious idea and school is its church. New York City hires me to be a priest. I offer rituals to keep heresy at bay. I provide documentation to justify the heavenly pyramid.
Socrates foresaw that if teaching became a formal profession something like this would happen. Professional interest is best served by making what is easy to do seem hard; by subordinating laity to priesthood. School has become too vital a jobs project, contract-giver and protector of the social order to allow itself to be “re-formed.” It has political allies to guard its marches.
That’s why reforms come and go without changing much. Even reformers can’t imagine school much different.
David learns to read at age four; Rachel, at age nine: In normal development, when both are 13, you can’t tell which one learned first — the five-year spread means nothing at all. But in school I will label Rachel “learning disabled” and slow David down a bit, too.
For a paycheck, I adjust David to depend on me to tell him when to go and stop. He won’t outgrow that dependency. I identify Rachel as discount merchandise, “special education.” After a few months she’ll be locked into her place forever.
In 26 years of teaching rich kids and poor, I almost never met a “learning disabled” child; hardly ever met a “gifted and talented” one, either. Like all school categories, these are sacred myths, created by the human imagination. They derive from questionable values we never examine because they preserve the temple of schooling.
That’s the secret behind short-answer tests, bells, uniform time blocks, age grading, standardization, and all the rest of the school religion punishing our nation.
There isn’t a right way to become educated; there are as many ways as fingerprints. We don’t need state-certified teachers to make education happen – that probably guarantees it won’t.
How much more evidence is necessary? Good schools don’t need more money or a longer year; they need real free-market choices, variety that speaks to every need and runs risks. We don’t need a national curriculum, or national testing either. Both initiatives arise from ignorance of how people learn, or deliberate indifference to it.
I can’t teach this way any longer. If you hear of a job where I don’t have to hurt kids to make a living, let me know. Come fall I’ll be looking for work, I think.

[Mr. Gatto was New York State Teacher of the Year for 1991, a title conferred by the New York State Education Department. He did subsequently leave his teaching position and wrote Dumbing Us Down, New Society Publishers, where he continued his strong statements regarding the salvageability of the school system. He also cites the academic success of home schooling as encouragement for alternatives.]

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“Every child in America entering school at the age of five is insane because he comes to school with certain allegiances to our founding fathers, toward our elected officials, toward his parents, toward a belief in a supernatural being, and toward the sovereignty of this nation as a separate entity. It’s up to you as teachers to make all these sick children well – by creating the international child of the future”
Dr. Chester M. Pierce, Psychiatrist, address to the Childhood International Education Seminar, 1973

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On their eighth day of deliberations, the jurors convicted 11 of the 12 defendants of racketeering, a felony that carries up to 20 years in prison.

Investigators concluded that cheating had occurred in at least 44 schools and that the district had been troubled by “organized and systemic misconduct.” Nearly 180 employees, including 38 principals, were accused of wrongdoing as part of an effort to inflate test scores and misrepresent the achievement of Atlanta’s students and schools. – New York Times, April 1, 2015, by Alan Blinder

In 2011 an investigation by a local television station in Atlanta, WSB-TV, revealed that more than 700 teachers in Georgia had repeatedly failed at least one portion of a test they must pass before receiving a teaching certificate. Nearly 60 teachers failed the test at least 10 times, and “there were 297 teachers on the payrolls of metro Atlanta school systems in the past three years after having failed the state certification test five times or more.”

Would you want your child taught by someone who flunked the certification test five times, let alone 10? And would that instructor be more or less likely to resort to changing student test scores to hide his own incompetence? – Wall Street Journal, April 8, 2015 by Jason Riley

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By any reasonable measure, America’s monopolistic, bureaucratic, over-regulated system of public schools is woefully unprepared to meet the challenges of the twenty-first century. Political, business, and education leaders continue to talk about “reforming” the current public education system. They should, instead, be discussing how to replace it. – John Hood

Read more: http://www.fee.org/the_freeman/detail/the-failure-of-american-public-education#ixzz2Lh8PoEil
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Common Cause – Further dumbing down of our public schools, opposed even by left-wing National Public Radio.

http://cuacc.org/over.html

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On the subject of dumbing down, the United States ranks 84th in the world in science and engineering degrees.  Eighty-fourth.  I could be wrong, but I believe the U.S. ranks first in feminist/gender studies, first in social ecology, first in black studies, and first overall in subjects which have little purpose beyond creating strife and divisiveness in opposition to the liberty, morality, and religious freedom upon which America was founded. – Jan 10, 2015

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In order to cover up the Education Fraud, the College Board has dumbed down the SAT test again. The essay portion will now be optional, and there will no longer be no penalty for wrong answers (guessing).

New York Times link follows, dated March 5, 2014:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/06/education/major-changes-in-sat-announced-by-college-board.html?_r=0

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A Crisis of Competence

The Corrupting Effect of [liberal] Political Activism in the University of California
A report prepared by the National Association of Scholars
for the Regents of the University of California

http://www.nas.org/images/documents/A_Crisis_of_Competence.pdf

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Higher Education:  Matrix Brainwashing 101 (www.beforeitsnews.com)

Today’s college degree is the educational equivalent of only a 1947 high-school diploma, although with studies evidencing the ignorance of college graduates, rating it even that highly is questionable. The point is, however, that employers can no longer view a college degree as a guarantor of basic knowledge. As Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa write in their 2011 book Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses:

Growing numbers of students are sent to college at increasingly higher costs, but for a large proportion of them the gains in critical thinking, complex reasoning, and written communication are either exceedingly small or empirically nonexistent. At least 45 percent of students in our sample [of the study they conducted] did not demonstrate any statistically significant improvement in Collegiate Learning Assessment (CLA) performance during the first two years of college. (Further study has indicated that 36 percent of students did not show any significant improvement over four years.) While these students may have developed subject-specific skills that were not tested for by the CLA, in terms of general analytical competencies assessed, large numbers of U.S. college students can be accurately described as academically adrift. They might graduate, but they are failing to develop the higher-order cognitive skills that it is widely assumed college students should master.

This explains why a master’s degree is now sometimes required where an undergraduate degree once sufficed: In a dumbed-down system where today’s college equals yesterday’s high school, graduate school is the new college. The result? Americans are paying far more — and attending school far longer — for no better than the same education.

Among the reasons for this cited by Arum and Roksa include the fact that “existing [college] organizational cultures and practices too often do not put a high priority on undergraduate learning,” that students “spend increasing numbers of hours on nonacademic activities,” and “define and understand their college experiences as being focused more on social than on academic development” (that’s an egghead way of saying they want to party hardy). But the reality is that these explanations are the lesser part of the equation.

It’s well known that schools at all levels are currently adrift not just in ignorance but also permissiveness. Where chewing gum and running in the halls were the biggest problems in the 1950s, schools today may have metal detectors and school-shooting protocols, and there is a rash of violence against teachers. Why, New York City has surrendered to the point where it now no longer suspends students who cut class, smoke, or curse — even if they direct their foul tongue at teachers. Even more outrageously, the Obama administration is pressuring localities to administer school punishment based on racial quota for the purposes of equalizing the suspension rates between white and black/Hispanic students. Does any of this serve to cultivate an environment conducive to learning?

Pointing to the Problems

This brings us to a point universally missed when analyzing educational woes, despite it being the most important factor: the lack of discipline and obedience in modern schools. These two qualities are prerequisites for learning for the simple reason that for someone to learn from you, he must first be willing to listen to you. This is why tolerating student disrespect is so destructive. After all, how amenable are you to learning from someone whom you don’t respect? This is, mind you, why society traditionally enjoined youth to respect their elders and everyone to respect God. It’s not that God needs us to bow down to Him or that older folks should have their egos massaged; it’s that man generally won’t take divine law very seriously if he doesn’t show deference to the deity — and, likewise, children won’t take adults’ teaching very seriously if disrespect defines their attitude.

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UCI student protests target tuition, racial insensitivity (Irvine World News, Nov 19, 2015)

UCI ingrates (but I repeat myself) are demanding free education. They don’t want to pay tuition to help defray the billion dollar per year costs of UCI.  Pass that on to working stiffs.

Black UCI students are demanding segregation. They want separate housing, exclusively for blacks, in violation of federal law.  If any white students demanded housing exclusively for whites, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and the rest of the race-baiting blowhards would be here within a day, the liberal media all in tow.

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The truth about America’s teachers unions By RICHARD BERMAN 

March 24, 2016

“Do you think unions protect bad teachers?”

That was Anderson Cooper’s question for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton at her party’s recent primary debate in Flint, Mich. Clinton’s answer was definitive: “I have told my friends at the top of [the teachers unions], we’ve got to take a look at this because it is one of the most common criticisms. We need to eliminate the criticism.”

(My note:  Hillary did not address the problem which bears heavily on school children.  Rather she simply claimed that Democrats need to censor the conversation, to shut up conservative critics.)

That might take awhile. One estimate based on federal data suggests that only one in 500 tenured teachers is ever fired for poor performance.

The reason is simple: America’s largest teachers unions – the National Education Association and American Federation of Teachers – are notorious for protecting underwhelming teachers through generous tenure policies. In some states, it can take a teacher as little as one year to secure tenure. This leads to last-in, first-out firing procedures that disproportionately punish the youngest teachers who haven’t been tenured.

And those who would make tenure qualifications performance-based – to essentially reward the best teachers – are attacked by union bosses. AFT President Randi Weingarten often claims that tenure reform seeks to “scapegoat teachers.” NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia recently referred to it as the “shameful scapegoating of America’s educators.” Dean Vogel of the powerful California Teachers Association, an affiliate of the NEA, has also said as much of tenure reformers: “Instead of focusing on the real issues facing our schools, they have chosen to ignore those problems and instead to scapegoat teachers.”

But how does rewarding America’s best teachers “scapegoat teachers”? It’s a question with no good answer.

Teachers unions’ staunch support for the status quo spills over into politics. The NEA and AFT’s super PACs have spent nearly $163 million on political activities and lobbying since 1990, with millions more in non-PAC expenditures. The NEA ranked as the top organization funding super PACs during the 2014 election cycle – well ahead of conservative power players including the Republican Governors Association (No. 18), Freedom Partners (No. 55) and American Crossroads (No. 66). (The AFT finished No. 13.)

And the overwhelming majority of teacher union money – 99 percent – is sent to the Democratic Party and liberal special interest groups opposing what should be noncontroversial proposals such as tenure reform, merit-based teacher pay and expanded school choice. In fact, the NEA contributed $0 to Republicans and conservative causes in 2014.

It shows that union bosses are more concerned with bankrolling an anti-reform agenda than fixing America’s schools – or listening to their members. The most recent NEA survey of public school teachers found that 55 percent of teachers characterize themselves as “conservative” or “tend to be conservative.” Yet conservative groups receive barely 1 percent of teacher union money in any given election year.

The result is clear: Without reform, American education will struggle.

The time for change is now. And teachers unions are getting in the way.

Richard Berman is executive director of the Center for Union Facts.

 

The truth about America’s teachers unions

“Do you think unions protect bad teachers?”

That was Anderson Cooper’s question for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton at her party’s recent primary debate in Flint, Mich. Clinton’s answer was definitive: “I have told my friends at the top of [the teachers unions], we’ve got to take a look at this because it is one of the most common criticisms. We need to eliminate the criticism.”

That might take awhile. One estimate based on federal data suggests that only one in 500 tenured teachers is ever fired for poor performance.

The reason is simple: America’s largest teachers unions – the National Education Association and American Federation of Teachers – are notorious for protecting underwhelming teachers through generous tenure policies. In some states, it can take a teacher as little as one year to secure tenure. This leads to last-in, first-out firing procedures that disproportionately punish the youngest teachers who haven’t been tenured.

And those who would make tenure qualifications performance-based – to essentially reward the best teachers – are attacked by union bosses. AFT President Randi Weingarten often claims that tenure reform seeks to “scapegoat teachers.” NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia recently referred to it as the “shameful scapegoating of America’s educators.” Dean Vogel of the powerful California Teachers Association, an affilliate of the NEA, has also said as much of tenure reformers: “Instead of focusing on the real issues facing our schools, they have chosen to ignore those problems and instead to scapegoat teachers.”

But how does rewarding America’s best teachers “scapegoat teachers”? It’s a question with no good answer.

Teachers unions’ staunch support for the status quo spills over into politics. The NEA and AFT’s super PACs have spent nearly $163 million on political activities and lobbying since 1990, with millions more in non-PAC expenditures. The NEA ranked as the top organization funding super PACs during the 2014 election cycle – well ahead of conservative power players including the Republican Governors Association (No. 18), Freedom Partners (No. 55) and American Crossroads (No. 66). (The AFT finished No. 13.)

And the overwhelming majority of teacher union money – 99 percent – is sent to the Democratic Party and liberal special interest groups opposing what should be noncontroversial proposals such as tenure reform, merit-based teacher pay and expanded school choice. In fact, the NEA contributed $0 to Republicans and conservative causes in 2014.

It shows that union bosses are more concerned with bankrolling an anti-reform agenda than fixing America’s schools – or listening to their members. The most recent NEA survey of public school teachers found that 55 percent of teachers characterize themselves as “conservative” or “tend to be conservative.” Yet conservative groups receive barely 1 percent of teacher union money in any given election year.

The result is clear: Without reform, American education will struggle.

The time for change is now. And teachers unions are getting in the way.

Richard Berman is executive director of the Center for Union Facts.