A sentimental education 2

The Left is the side of the emotions. Leftism is the politics of feeling. Is there anything collectivists dread so much as reason? Anything they avoid so frantically, so acrobatically, as fact?

These are extracts from an article in Canada Free Press, by the excellent Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh, on the Left’s campaign to keep rising generations uncontaminated by knowledge, and safe from the vice of reasoning. (Our only significant difference of opinion with her is over religion. We think, unlike the author, that education should not include religion – except as history and literature – so among the passages we omit are some where she touches on that issue.)

Few parents actually know what Common Core Education is. Teachers who are finding out do not seem to care, let the state fight it out. For teachers, it is a means to an end; the end translates into keeping their jobs and a paycheck coming in this tough economy which the current administration celebrates as a “recovery” from a self-induced coma.

Although touted as a means to improve education standards, the Brookings Institution said, “The empirical evidence suggests that the Common Core will have little effect on American students’ achievement. The nation will have to look elsewhere for ways to improve its schools.” …

The Department of Education at the federal and state levels had developed many experimental programs that promised to be breakthroughs in education but were discarded later as giant wastes of time and taxpayer dollars while the achievement levels had continuously declined.

Arne Duncan, the Secretary of Education, described Core Standards as an important tool for international competitiveness, access to high quality education, and a way to prepare “all students for college, work and citizenship. These standards are an important foundation for our collective work.” I emphasized “collective” because that is what Common Core is about, indoctrination into the “collective” mindset.

In spite of the fact that we have different brains, IQs, learning styles, and  …  talents, Common Core standards insist that “all children can and should learn to high achievement standards based on a “universal design for learning.”

This would be achieved by having different sets of standards based on race, ethnic background, socio-economic background, and disability, a type of “separate and unequal” education.

All students will receive the same diploma but for “unequal” work in mathematics and reading and for “unequal” achievement.

Furthermore, a video surfaced that shows that wrong answers in math are acceptable under Common Core standards as long as students can explain how they got the wrong answer and feel good about it.

We had to read that sentence twice before we could stop saying “Incredible!” and say instead, “Absurd enough to be true of this administration!”

The states who adopted the Common Core Standards were excused from the detested No Child Left Behind Act which set the standards too high for low achievers and low motivators who are not really interested in education. It is criminal and sad to see semi-literate individuals receive diplomas when they cannot actually read or write, cursive or otherwise, very well and are glorified by the MSM for speaking Ebonics.

“Beginning this fall, Alabama public schools will be under a new state-created academic accountability system that sets different goals for students in math and reading, based on their race, economic status, ability to speak English and disabilities.”

The English Arts Curriculum textbooks used in Utah, called Voices, Literature and Writing, emphasize the Democracy Plan, preparing students for community organizing. …

The Utahans Against Common Core has mounted an opposition. A short video shows the first grade textbook, Voices, Literature, and Writing, that teaches nothing about literature or writing. Instead, “In the Voices of Democracy theme, students use their voices to advocate solutions to social problems that they care deeply about. They are engaged in learning the following theme-related social knowledge and skills: social role models, social advocacy, and respect for each other. They learn to develop a Democracy Plan in which they develop ways to help people in need.” …

This [the Democracy Plan] is community organizing; this is communism, not literature and writing.

Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh has lived under communism in Romania, so she has no trouble recognizing it.

In the same series of books, educators are directed to teach first graders about emotional words of anger and fear in order to accomplish their social justice goals. The workbook gives the following example, “My mom_____ (tells) (nags) me to clean my room.” Students are supposed to choose “nags” because it is an emotional word of anger. If a student chooses “tells” the answer is incorrect.

Students are taught about feelings instead of logical thinking and parents are marginalized as some annoying individuals who nag their children. Would the collectivist village take over the rearing of our children?

Homework activities include practicing being upset and angry because “feelings cause people to act”. Is there any wonder that we have the Occupy Wall Street mobs, angry mobs, flash mobs, and people talking over each other? Liberals are taught to be ruled by feelings and not by logic.

Are these curriculum materials limited to first grade? No, all grades have the same theme, the Democracy Plan. By third grade teachers must “measure attitudes, beliefs, and dispositions,” making specific notes on the Student Observation Form whether “growth and change in individual student’s behavior and attitudes is observed”. One rubric asks, “Does the student use the plural ‘we’ and ‘our’ to advocate ways to solve social problems?” In other words, I and my, individualism, are frowned upon. …

Is this what we are trying to do with Common Core standards? Force every student into a government-dictated and enforced mold, dumbing down the curriculum so much that everyone appears equally intelligent, equally capable, equally trained, equally able?

The focus will no longer be education, the classics, language, government, mathematics, science, history, chemistry and individual achievement in those fields but social justice, activism, and community organizing for the socialist collective?

Yes. Because a childishly emotional population, living in a state of primitive dread, unable to reason and armed neither with guns nor education will be easy for a tyrannous government to control.

  • WmarkW

    I used to read and comment on Susan Jacoby’s columns at the Washington Post’s On Faith website. It was called The Spirited Atheist: Looking for a new Age of Reason. She would regularly deride the quality of American education, especially students’ poor command of history and civics, but never, ever connected it to liberally biased, politically correct cirriculums, or to the voting patterns of those under 30.

    • liz

      She has a real blind spot. I liked the first part of her book “Freethinkers, A History of American Secularism”, but it veered further and further left from there.
      This Common Core should be called the “Communist Plan”, not the “Democracy Plan”. It couldn’t be more obvious, or more disgusting and outrageous.
      Its not only feelings over logic, its BAD feelings over logic. Bad feelings spawned by a bad idea from a overgrown spoiled brat named Marx.