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Can we abolish public schools already?

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http://msnbc.msn.com/id/6942751/

According to benchmarks for middle school education, the top objective for the district's math teachers is to teach "respect for human differences." The objective is for students to "live out the system-wide core value of 'respect for human differences' by demonstrating anti-racist/anti-bias behaviors."

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,146684,00.html

"The 'antiracist' and, actually, 'anti-American' curriculum permeates the school environment," Lillian Benson, whose children, ages 8 and 11, attend the district's schools, told FOXnews.com in an e-mail.

"My children do not know Christopher Columbus, except that he was a racist who caused the death of many innocents or the founders of the nation. They have hardly heard of George Washington or Abraham Lincoln even though we live in the area that began it all. What they do know about is the wonders of Ghana, Mexico and China," she said.

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You know what is sad-- I am sure there are worse things then that.

As far as the same boat (math), At the community college in my city-- the majority of students do not test into college Alg. 90%+ test into Elementary Alg. While I am sure a lot of people will say Community College shouldn't be the benchmark-- I would say that is probably wrong. These are average (C, C+, B-) students and thus represent what our public (and I suppose some private) schools see as the acceptable or the status quo. It just disgusts me.

Edited by PennDrago

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http://msnbc.msn.com/id/6942751/

According to benchmarks for middle school education, the top objective for the district's math teachers is to teach "respect for human differences."

Your thread topic asks if we can abolish public schools. Are you objecting to them because of their multiculturalist policies?

Isn't there a more fundamental reason for wanting to abolish governmental schools -- the fact that they are based on aggression in financing (through taxes) and aggression in laws hindering the development of competing schools?

If all schools were privately owned, some, in today's culture, would still teach multiculturalism.

Objecting to public schools because of the content of some of their teaching is focusing on a nonessential target.

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Isn't there a more fundamental reason for wanting to abolish governmental schools -- the fact that they are based on aggression in financing (through taxes) and aggression in laws hindering the development of competing schools?

I think the fundamental reason for why government schools are wrong is well known among all serious forum members, so there is no need to always state it explicitly. This is a "news" post (notice that it is in the Current Events forum); its purpose is to inform us about the specifics of how the aggression is being perpetrated.

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This is a "news" post (notice that it is in the Current Events forum); its purpose is to inform us about the specifics of how the aggression is being perpetrated.

Two points. First, how does the first post in this thread tell serious forum members how the aggression is being perpetrated? Aggression in the public school system consists in (1) taxation and (2) regulations that provide hurdles or barriers to those who want to freely set up their own privately owned schools. I don't see discussion of either of these forms of aggression.

Second, what is the utility of knowing the administrative policies of governmental school officials? What can serious forum members do with such information that they couldn't do by concentrating on the underlying moral issue?

The long-standing, classic error (if that is what it is) of conservatives is to concentrate on the consequences -- that is, the inessentials -- of immoral policies rather than on the principles which cause them. They gripe about taxes being "too high" or regulations that are "stifling." This is like arguing that slave labor is inefficient. It misses the point.

P. S. -- If the topic is "news," then why does the title call for the abolition of public education? That is a call to activism. The question then is: Why take action? The answer apparently is that the looted money will be spent on things we don't like. Is that evidence of essentializing?

[Edited to add postscript.]

Edited by BurgessLau

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Two points. First, how does the first post in this thread tell serious forum members how the aggression is being perpetrated? Aggression in the public school system consists in (1) taxation and (2) regulations that provide hurdles or barriers to those who want to freely set up their own privately owned schools. I don't see discussion of either of these forms of aggression.

Second, what is the utility of knowing the administrative policies of governmental school officials?

I said the purpose of the post is to inform us about the specifics of how the aggression is being perpetrated. In this case, the specifics are that taxpayers are being forced to pay for teaching "respect for human differences" in math classes.

What can serious forum members do with such information that they couldn't do by concentrating on the underlying moral issue?

Make decisions as to whether or not to send their children to a government school. Prioritize the need to eliminate government schools versus other forms of aggression. Gain the emotional motivation necessary to fight against government education. Discuss the principle underlying the calls to teach "respect for human differences" in math classes, regardless of whether in government or private schools.

P. S. -- If the topic is "news," then why does the title call for the abolition of public education? That is a call to activism.

What the title does is express a desire for the abolition of government schools. If the title were something like, "Why all schools should be private" or "Get the government out of education," the intended audience were people who are not yet convinced of the immorality of government schooling, and the content were op-ed style, then your point would stand. But the title is "Can we ... already?" which primarily expresses impatience with a long-held desire rather than introduce a new proposal; the post has been made on a board where the overwhelming majority of members already agree that government schooling is immoral; and the content is just the news, without any comment, while the location of the post is the "Current Events" forum.

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Exactly. It was my continuing frustration with the public schools. Public schools aren't immoral because of the news articles I posted, they are immoral for much different reasons, as are outlined above. I'm just saying that the first article shows that not only are public schools immoral by their way of theft, as we all knew, but they are completely WORTHLESS. The schools are stealing our money to provide what is not even education anymore. The first priority for a math teacher isn't MATH? :/

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The schools are stealing our money to provide what is not even education anymore. The first priority for a math teacher isn't MATH? :/

Within a year I hope to finish my college education and head into teaching. As I mentioned in my introductory post, I'm taking a roundabout path and attempting to give myself a more classical education, instead of going directly through an education major. It's obvious if you sit in on any class, that you're not going to learn anything helpful to a subject. The aim of these courses is to fill the soon-to-be-teacher's head with useless pedagogy, theories that explicitly don't work, "tips and tricks" to keep lessons interesting, and of course, all sorts of generalized sensitivity in the most insincere fashion one could imagine. (All EDU students at my university are required to take one special ed. class and one multiculturalism class so that they will be "prepared" for inclusion.)

Even though I'll be getting a regular degree, that won't qualify me to actually be a teacher at the state schools. (Frankly, I'm going to attempt to work in private institutions first.) So, in order to get certification, I'll first have to take the TExES test. It is supposedly a test used to ensure subject competency. There is a different test for each subject/age group. Yesterday, I glanced at the sample test online.

A fourth grade class has been reading folk tales from around the world.  Which of the following oral language activities would be most effective in promoting students' multicultural awareness and appreciation?

A.  Students discuss folk talks from various countries and then read aloud and discuss descriptions of the geography and cultural characteristics of each country.

B.  The teacher guides students to discuss some features that folk talks of various countries have in common as well as some of the unique features of each culture's folk tales.

C.  Students read aloud "folk talks" they have written themselves and then review folk tales from various countries and decide which culture's folk talks most closely resemble their own.

D.  The teacher helps each student select a folk tale, present it to the class, and answer any questions that other students in the class may have about the folk tale's plot or characters.

A quick glance through the mathematics sample test (also for 4-8) thankfully reveals actual math problems.

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... I'm taking a roundabout path and attempting to give myself a more classical education, instead of going directly through an education major. 

The teachers in my son's school have various "tips and tricks" which do not necessarily make the lesson more interesting, but actually help break it down into units that the child can learn more easily. Not sure if one learns these through books, Montessori courses, or some other way.

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The teachers in my son's school have various "tips and tricks" which do not necessarily make the lesson more interesting, but actually help break it down into units that the child can learn more easily. Not sure if one learns these through books, Montessori courses, or some other way.

I'm a huge advocate for being passionate about one's work, especially for teachers. Having a variety of ways to present material is certainly a good thing. My problem with these courses is that while they may be called "Principles of Composition" or "Survey of Reading", all they offer are subjectively based theories (some of which they say don't work, but which we should use any way) and ideas for lessons. There is almost no focus at all on the actual content (writing and reading skills), regardless of the fact that over half the students of education majors don't know simple facts. In one of my classes, several students had trouble labeling prepositions and conjunctions during an exercise meant for 7th graders. When the only substance of a course is different ways to present lessons, all you end up with is a bunch of teachers that can make a presentation interesting, but still aren't teaching anything.

Technique is important, but it is not exclusive from content. Taking a course in education at a modern university is similar to watching home decorating shows in order to become an artist.

Incidentally, I think the Montessori approach is great :huh: From what I know of their methods, teachers who wish to work in Montessori schools must take courses to learn about the method. I don't believe they're just taught how to do something (like the pink block tower), but why it's also important.

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Technique is important, but it is not exclusive from content.  Taking a course in education at a modern university is similar to watching home decorating shows in order to become an artist. 

:)

The "tips and trick" to content ratio is also probably driven by age-group. My son, is in first grade. So, his teacher knows pretty well that 7 x 8 = 56. The key issue is how to teach it.

All the best in your career.

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