Thursday, June 14, 2012

I Will Not Be Assimilated!

Today, Robert Pondiscio of Core Knowledge Foundation, wrote a post that made me have to stop and respond.  It was called, Nobody Loves Standards (and that's O.K.).

You know what?  That's BUNK! 

I love the fact that there is a standard for how restaurants serve food, as I don't enjoy the prospect of Tomain poisoning or Salmonella infection.  I love the fact that I am entitled to a certain standard of treatment by my physician and dentist as I don't enjoy the prospect of being made more ill or losing a tooth I didn't need to.  These kind of standards are those imposed by a municipality or city via my tax dollars and are designed to protect the community they serve.  If I decide to open a restaurant and decide these codes or standards are too harsh, I can petition my city government to have them changed.

The Common Core State Standards are in NO WAY an apples to apples comparison with those described above.  The CCSS are imposed on students and parents by education elitists who think they know better than parents and students, what students should learn.  They were created in a galaxy far, far away (the National Governor's Association - a private, dues-collecting organization), by a group of individuals so that no one single group can be held accountable for their creation.  How then, does a parent or student complain or have them changed if they feel they are not living up to their advertised excellence?  Good question.

In short, the Common Core State Standards are an extra-Constitutional form of control which usurps the rights of those that are supposed to use them and pay for them.  That is not what a STANDARD should do in this country.

Consequently, I felt the need to respond - rather cheekily I agree - to Mr. Pondiscio assertion that Common Core State Standards will be just what the doctor ordered when it comes to teaching reading - and apparently ALL of elementary school for that matter.

Below was my comment:
I am speechless.  I am a former Core Knowledge 7th grade Science teacher.  For you, of all people to be touting - in any way - the Common Core, makes me, well, ah, okay, speechless.

Though I was frequently frustrated by the cross curricular aspect of Core Knowledge (getting the History, English, Math and Science teachers all on the same topic for even a day, is more than difficult to wrangle), I found it rich and interesting and easy to align with our states standards.  I often spent time ferreting out information on specific scientists as we covered specific topics in chemistry and life science, and giving the students a real glimpse into the minds of the people that came before them to prepare the way for them to learn.  I tested (I didn't ASSESS) my students after each unit to make sure they were 'getting' the harder concepts (such as the Periodic Table) and my students did well above average on their state Core Curriculum tests.

I'm so glad I'm now at home schooling my own kids.  With CCSS, teaching to the test would be my reality.  Gone would be the days of foraging around in the lives of scientists or trampling around off-topic to watch a film to reinforce a concept or spending enough time covering the Periodic Table well enough to make sure everyone got it.  Heck with that, I'd have to cover everything that would be on the test, or lose my job when my students weren't ASSESSED at a proper assessment 'interval'. 

Teaching was once a profession in which the promise of (and necessity for) individualism and autonomy, drew those who enjoyed imparting wisdom to people younger than themselves in whatever way they found worked best.  Now, all that remains for teachers is to become assimilated into the collective called 'accountability' while figuring out a way to remain at least human enough to 'facilitate' classrooms of children glued to computers and iPads full of programs effortlessly guiding them toward their necessary place in the global workforce.

Though I fear my commentary here will simply be overlooked as the lunatic ravings of a dissenter for not including enough of the CCSS buzzwords I've picked up over the year and a half I've been studying and writing about this initiative (I devoted an entire blog to those!), I'm pretty sure teachers still in the classroom would agree with my thoughts.

Why otherwise intelligent people such as yourself seem so intent upon joining the Borg, I can't possibly comprehend on any level.  The collective is NOT (nor has it ever been) the way, and I for one will not be assimilated. 

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Do We Really Know What It Means to "Privatize" Education and Other Government Services?

The following is a commentary I wrote for my Facebook page this morning.  Last weekend I took part in an absolutely excellent workshop for a number of researchers, researching a number of different areas. It was very eye-opening to see how ANTI-REPUBLICAN governance is occurring across all spectra of government and how few people (including me!) really understand how pervasive this phenomenon is.
I will be writing some more well-researched (with links) blog posts on such topics as Technocracy, but today's post is more of a down-and-dirty, opinion piece.  I urge you, however, to "google" or "bing" or whatever you do - some of the topics and ideas I present here and see what you find.  We MUST begin to see our government as it is rapidly becoming - essentially Marxist, with rising Fascism components - or we will most certainly be lost.
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Many national Republicans - (including Oklahoma Senator Clark Jolley) - want to privatize government services such as education and DHS.

Is privatizing public services BAD?  If so, how?
Yes, privatization of public government is BAD.  A Republic is governance of the people through members of the people elected to represent the populace using the force of law to protect them from their government.

When you PRIVATIZE government, you remove (shut out/eliminate) the voice of the people in the process. When government services are privatized, citizens PAY for services which exist in a private sector sphere, thereby eliminating 'free market' principles from working. A 'privatized' government agency can't fail because tax payers prop up it up to prevent that from happening. This produces ZERO oversight or accountability to the taxpayers who pay for the 'services'. This, a process directly akin to Fascism in many ways.

Senator Jolley wants to privatize DHS. Okay, let's say a DHS head is paid via public money, but is 'elected' to that position by a PRIVATE BOARD through what is called an appointment. Now, tax-payers little to no ability to call for his/her dismissal because he/she is under PRIVATE contract with an essentially private board.

Additionally, education in America according to the Founders, was to be PUBLIC so that ALL people - whether rich or poor - could take advantage of the ability to learn to read and to write in order to understand the Bible and the Constitution. Latin American (and many African) countries have PRIVATE education, which results in a situation in which much of the poor populace is never even able to be taught how to read and write.

This shift in 'consent of the governed' to 'governance' is completely antithetical to the Constitution. Those suggesting we should privatize government services in order for it to become more efficient are simply attempting to take complete control of government moving it from "consent of the governed" to "consent of the APPOINTED". Americans should NEVER consent to PRIVATIZED government, yet we have been lied to and told that this is better for all. I say NO to Fascism! How about you!?
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 Here are a couple of examples I found in my inbox just today:

Politicians and Team Owners Snooker Sports Fans and Taxpayers

vouchers boo hiss

Bill Gates: Selling Bad Advice to the Public Schools

Obamacare Has Literally Replaced the Constitution Not about education, but about exactly the idea we explain here.