Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Listen to Zinn speak ill of the United States and verbalize a one-sided opinion of Christopher Columbus and George Bush.   This is the babble that our children listen to every day in the government controlled schools.  Zinn's communistic-collectivist views are those that are perpetrated on a daily basis on the students.   With Zinn being the text of choice by teachers, just how often are other authors and opinions discussed?    How many teachers inspire a real discussion from different points of view?  

The civics and history teachers that I had did not inspire any thought or discussion.  In civics we read "Time" or "Newsweek" and wrote pages of homework verbatim from the magazines.   Not too much thought was given to that assignment.  In our U.S. Government class we read a chapter each week and had a ten question quiz every Friday. That assignment required zero effort from the teacher and not much effort from the students.   I received A+ in that class and a nice little certificate for being "the honor student."   I sat next to a guy that had failed the class three times.   (You had to pass the class in order to graduate and so he was the oldest student in the class.)  I assumed he didn't have time to read the book.  He did pass the year he sat next to me.

I have asked local students simple questions regarding our government.   I asked who is the Speaker of the House, who is the Vice President, who is our local representative,  name a U.S. Senator from Ohio, simple questions.   Not one person knew the answers and neither did the parent.   Just what are the local schools teaching?   I bet Zinn's ideas are part of the indoctrination process.

Howard Zinn said in "A People's History of the United States," "Capitalism has always been a failure for the lower class.  It is now beginning to fail for the middle classes."   The middle class is now wasting away.   That is not because of capitalism, but because of the socialism perpetrated on us by the government.   I believe our president calls it "redistribution of assets."

This is what is taught versus this quote from Ayn Rand, "Capitalism is a social system based on the recognition of individual rights, including property rights, in which all property is privately owned."

Which system gives hope and opportunity?   In one the government elitists control every aspect of our lives.   In the other an immigrant can arrive on our shores with $20.00 in his pocket, work hard and become a millionaire with his own business.   I knew a woman that had arrived in Detroit (from Germany) with nothing.   She worked on her hands and knees scrubbing the stairs and hallways of her apartment building. This helped pay her rent.   She married and she and her husband started a little business.   It grew and when I knew her the family had become millionaires and her children were college graduates.   She said that this country was the only country in the world where hard work paid off.   

Dr. Ben Carson grew up in the slums of Detroit.   His mother had to work two and three jobs to support her family.   She had a third grade education.   She worked hard and she wanted her sons to be "someone."    No television was allowed.  She inspired them to read and do well in school.   It wasn't always easy.  Dr. Carson just retired from Johns Hopkins as the head of the Pediatric Neurosurgical Department.   He is one of the finest brain surgeons in the nation - probably the world.   I hope he is our next president. 

Do not teach our children that mediocrity is all that this nation offers.   Do not teach our children that the collectivist way is the only way.   Do not teach our children that this is a rotten country and that there is no hope for them. Do not teach our children to despise the nation of their birth.  

Teach our children that there is hope.  Teach them that they can succeed at anything with hard work.   Teach them to participate in our government and to inform themselves of the choices that are available to them.   Teach them that socialism/communism has never worked in any country.   I would have speakers in the class that lived under Hitler and under Castro.  There are many people in our area that can give first hand experiences of what happened in Germany, Russia and Cuba after the dictators took over.

Economics is a wonderful subject.   Even small children can learn how to be entrepreneurs.   For example, have the child set up a lemonade stand.   Help them with the investment of the lemonade, ice, cups and stand.   After they finish selling deduct the costs of those items and let them enjoy the profit.  

This could be even more effective with high school students.  They can handle a more complicated product that they make or buy wholesale and sell retail.   This could be a term project for any civics class.  These days kids have to sell, but it is always for some charity.   That is nice, but doesn't teach economics.

It is time for the schools to promote creativity and productive genius.   It is time to stop the onward thrust of demeaning intellect in favor of mediocrity.   It is time to halt the P.C. police and the socialist educators that kill inspiration and innovation, who favor the policy of not honoring the best and instead give trophies to those that simply manage to attend school or those that they "feel sorry for."  Many schools no longer honor the Valedictorian of the class.   This is insanity.

We need to get back on track before there is no going back.  Communism is rotten to the very core.   So now we have "Common Core" to hammer in the final nail in the coffin of liberty.

This stupidity has to be stopped.

Howard Zinn Anti-American History Taught in Our Schools

Know your enemies and know if the teachers and curriculum ares what you would want for your children.  The following article explains the American history text that is used in many of our schools.   The author is revered by most teachers and adored by the Hollywood elite. 

Zinn was a member of the Communist Party and sought to change and divide this nation into a "utopian" haven led by elitists.  His text is anti-American and extremely divisive.  He blames Americans for the ills of the world.  When you hear about a "multicultural" curriculum in the schools, you should know that means anti-American.  

The NAACP had a rally in South Carolina.  In front of the courthouse is a large statue of George Washington.  The NAACP boxed in the statue because it was "offensive" to the participants attending the rally.   Yes, a monument to the "Father of our Nation" is offensive to a segment of our population.  I'd say the people involved do not love this nation nor appreciate the liberty that they enjoy here.

Beware of Zinn.  Please do check with your students to see what they are learning in school.   Ask them about the tests they are taking in school.  Many tests are evaluating their values, attitudes, beliefs and behavior.  Personal questions are an indication of an invasion their privacy (and the parent's privacy).   Records are being kept to track the effectiveness of the "change agent" curriculum. 

Howard Zinn and the Art of Anti-Americanism

This article originally appeared in The Wall Street Journal on August 12, 2013 
by David J. Bobb
Zinn-Book"Upon the death of the Marxist-inspired historian Howard Zinn in 2010, eulogies rang out from coast to coast calling him a heroic champion of the unsung masses. In Indiana, then-Gov. Mitch Daniels refused to join the chorus and instead sent emails to his staff wondering if the historian’s “execrable” books were being force-fed to Hoosier students. The recent revelation of these emails provoked an angry backlash.
High-school teachers within Zinn’s vast network of admirers blogged their disapproval of the governor’s heresy, and leading professional organizations of historians denounced the supposed threat to academic freedom. At Purdue University, where Mr. Daniels now serves as president, 90 faculty members hailed Zinn as a strong scholarly voice for the powerless and cast the former governor as an enemy of free thought.
An activist historian relentlessly critical of alleged American imperialism, Zinn managed during his lifetime to build an impressive empire devoted to the spread of his ideas. Even after his death, a sprawling network of advocacy and educational groups has grown, giving his Marxist and self-described “utopian” vision a wider audience than ever before.
Zinn’s most influential work, A People’s History of the United States, was published in 1980 with an initial print run of 4,000 copies. His story line appealed to young and old alike, with the unshaded good-guy, bad-guy narrative capturing youthful imaginations, and his spirited takedown of “the Man” reminding middle-aged hippies of happier days. Hollywood’s love for Zinn and a movie tribute to his work has made him even more mainstream. As his acolytes have climbed the rungs of power, still seeking revolution, A People’s History has increased in popularity. To date, it has sold 2.2 million volumes, with more than half of those sales in the past decade.
In Zinn’s telling, America is synonymous with brute domination that goes back to Christopher Columbus. “The American system,” he writes in A People’s History, is “the most ingenious system of control in world history.” The founding fathers were self-serving elitists defined by “guns and greed.”
For Americans stuck in impoverished communities and failing schools, Zinn’s devotion to history as a “political act” can seem appealing. He names villains (capitalists), condemns their misdeeds, and calls for action to redistribute wealth so that, eventually, all of the following material goods will be “free — to everyone: food, housing, health care, education, transportation.” The study of history, Zinn taught, demands this sort of social justice.
Schools with social-justice instruction that draw explicitly on Zinn are becoming more common. From the Social Justice Academy outside of San Francisco to the four campuses of the Cesar Chavez Public Charter Schools for Public Policy, in Washington, D.C., social-justice academies relate their mission mainly in terms of ideological activism. At UCLA’s Social Justice Academy, a program for high-school juniors, the goal is that students will “develop skills to take action that disrupts social justice injustices.”
While social-justice instruction may sound to some like it might be suited to conflict resolution, in practice it can end up creating more discord than it resolves. Several years ago, the Ann Arbor, Mich., public schools faced complaints from the parents of minority students that the American history curriculum was alienating their children. At a meeting of the district’s social-studies department chairs, the superintendent thought that he had discovered the cure for the divisions plaguing the school system. Holding up a copy of A People’s History, he asked, “How many of you have heard of Howard Zinn?” The chairwoman of the social studies department at the district’s largest school responded, “Oh, we’re already using that.”
Zinn’s arguments tend to divide, not unite, embitter rather than heal. The patron saint of Occupy Wall Street, Zinn left behind a legacy of prepackaged answers for every problem — a methodology that progressive historian Michael Kazin characterized as “better suited to a conspiracy-monger’s website than to a work of scholarship.”
Yet despite the lack of hard evidence in three-plus decades that using A People’s History produces positive classroom results, a number of well-coordinated groups recently have been set up to train teachers in the art of Zinn. Founded five years ago out of a partnership between Rethinking Schools and Teaching for Change, the Zinn Education Project offers more than 100 lesson plans and teachers’ guides to Zinn’s books, among a variety of other materials, including “Beyond Heroes and Holidays: A Practical Guide to K-12 Anti-Racist, Multicultural Education and Staff Development.” Already, the project claims to have enlisted 20,000 teachers in its efforts.
Before Zinn launched his own teaching career, he became a member of the Communist Party in 1949 (according to FBI reports released three years ago), and worked in various front groups in New York City. Having started his academic career at Spelman College, Zinn spent the bulk of it at Boston University, where on the last day before his retirement in 1988 he led his students into the street to participate in a campus protest.
Today, Boston University hosts the Howard Zinn Memorial Lecture Series, and New York University (Zinn’s undergraduate alma mater) proudly houses his academic papers. In 2004 Zinn was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Havana, an occasion he took to excoriate the lack of academic freedom in America. As recently as 2007, A People’s History was even required reading at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy for a class on “Leaders in America.”
Thanks in part to an endorsement from the character played by Matt Damon in 1997’s “Good Will Hunting,” Zinn’s magnum opus has also turned into a multimedia juggernaut. Actor Ben Affleck (like Mr. Damon, a family friend of Zinn’s), and musicians Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Eddie Vedder, and John Legend all have publicly praised Zinn. A History Channel documentary produced by Mr. Damon, “The People Speak,” featured Hollywood A-listers Morgan Freeman, Viggo Mortensen, Kerry Washington, and others reading from Zinn’s books. There are “People’s Histories” on topics including the American Revolution, Civil War, Vietnam, and even science. Zinn die-hards can purchase a graphic novel, A People’s History of American Empire, while kids can pick up a two-volume set, A Young People’s History of the United States (wall chart sold separately).
In 2005, as a guest on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show,” Zinn delivered his standard wholesale condemnation of America. Surprised by the unrelenting attack, host Jon Stewart gave the historian an opportunity to soften his criticism. “We have made some improvements,” the comedian asked, “in our barbarity over three hundred years, I would say, no?” Zinn denied there was any improvement.
As classes resume again this fall, it is difficult not to think that despite the late historian’s popularity, our students deserve better than the divisive pessimism of Howard Zinn."

Monday, December 9, 2013


The Milton Friedman Foundation and others have been advocating school choice for years.   Many of us believe that the funding that now goes to the union controlled government school systems should go to the students.   The parents should choose the school (or home school) that they deem best for their child.   This means that the parent will select the best curriculum.   If the school they choose does not cost the total of the funds they are allowed; the surplus could be saved for the child's college or trade designed education.    It is time to admit that our outrageously expensive and over-priced government schools too often fail most of the children.    
When Common Core is fully implemented those schools will be failing even more of our children.  It is fully exposed that Common Core IS designed to dumb down our population.
The following article is from EAG network.   Please take the time to read this information.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – There are a lot of folks in public education, particularly union apologists, who claim poverty is the root cause of the nation’s declining academic achievement.

Education poverty arrowBut recently released international test data, and several nonunion schools across the country, are demonstrating that poverty isn’t insurmountable when schools have the right focus. Education reform advocates believe high student expectations, combined with quality schools and teachers who are willing to put in a lot of hard work, can not only change students’ life trajectory, it’s likely the key to breaking the cycle of poverty,
Test results from the 2012 Program for International Student Assessment released last week showed U.S. teenagers “slipped from 25th to 31st in math since 2009; from 20th to 24th in science; and from 11th to 21st in reading,” Dow Jones Newswires reports.
“While some blamed the stagnant scores on poverty, others point out that impoverished Vietnam outscored many wealthier countries, including the United States, in math and science,” according to
That shoots one hole in the “poor kids can’t learn” theory.
There’s even more compelling evidence found in public charter schools that cater to low income students in many large cities across America. Watchdog cites D.C. Prep in Washington, D.C. as a prime example.
The public charter school network educates more than 1,200 students in grades 3 through 8, about 82 percent of which are from low income families. Students enrolled in D.C. Prep from age 4 through the 4th grade are testing as well as or better than wealthier students in other parts of D.C., reports.
About 95 percent of D.C. Prep students graduate high school, 80 percent go to college, and about 72 percent get their degrees, according to the news site.
“We have closed the so-called achievement gap, which says to me, ‘Of course you can educate low-income kids. You just need to get them a great school. You have to believe in them and focus on what they need,’” Ibby Jeppson, director of resource development for D.C. Prep, told

“Many of the things we do are things you’d see in any high performing urban environment. Kids wear uniforms. We have a longer school day. We have very high expectations. We do a tremendous amount of assessing kids, continuous assessment to make sure they’re understanding and mastering the material, and we have A-plus … teachers. They’re amazing.”
In other words, most of the reforms that are helping poor students are very basic, but unfortunately they run counter to the interests of teachers unions, which have fought bitterly to prevent similar reforms in traditional government schools.
Teachers unions don’t want their members to work more without substantially more pay, they’re opposed to student testing, and they don’t want teachers held accountable for their students’ performance. Union contract provisions in most public school districts also restrict the ability of school officials to hire and retain the best educators.
It’s not poverty that’s the biggest barrier to a better education for most students – it’s teachers unions.
Kevin Chavous, executive counsel with the American Federation of Children, told that while poverty makes a convenient excuse for poor performing schools, charter schools in D.C., New Orleans and other cities are showing that academic success is infectious, and likely the key to breaking the cycle of poverty many children face.
“In nearly every case, if you get one kid in poverty educated, that starts to break the cycle,” Chavous told the news site. He mentioned a recent scholarship reception in Louisiana at which several mothers of scholarship recipients admitted they dropped out of school and couldn’t read.
“One by one, these mothers stood up and started talking about how seeing their kids be excited about school has changed their view of school and excited possibilities for them,” Chavous said. “Four or five of them said they signed up to get their GED.
“Once you break that cycle and you can see how education can be transformative, it can be positively infectious.

Friday, December 6, 2013


This is part IV of the essay on Obamacore by:
              Gamaliel Isaac

I do thank Memo for allowing me to publish his thoughts and research on Common Core.

I do believe that Common Core indoctrination is quite dangerous to our children and to the future of our Constitutional Republic.   Our very liberty is at stake.  

These people will stop at nothing.   The recent death of Mandela has made a hero out of a violent criminal.  Now our president orders all flags in this nation to be flown at half staff.   Please do your research on the evils of the ANC, the communist organization that Mandela formed.  They were known for "necklacing" people that disagreed with them. This was a procedure that involved putting a tire around the neck of an opponent, filling it with gasoline, torching it and thus burning the person alive.    This was to shut down any opposition to their tactics.   I do remember seeing photos of people burning.   His wife Winnie would justify this way of getting rid of opposition and using the fear to shut up any opposition.   She led this torture and death when Mandela was in prison.

Violence has been the way of fomenting change in many countries around the world.   It is happening all over Africa today.   It happened in Venezuela, Cuba and many other countries.   The majority of the people suffered while the leaders became rich.   Communism/socialism has never worked and it will NEVER work.   The redistribution process destroys all initiative to better oneself.  Why work hard if you will not gain anything from your effort?   

I know people who lived in and loved South Africa.   They tried to stay there, but the AIDS, crime and leftist hatred made it impossible to live there.   These people gave up everything and moved to the United States.  It was not worth living in a country that destroyed all initiative and where people live in fear.

Is Common Core Data Collection Dangerous?

                President Obama and Arne Duncan have both said they want a  cradle to career data system tracking kids.  Attitudes tracked by Common Core include:

1. Political affiliations or beliefs of the student or parent;
2. Mental and psychological problems of the student or the student’s family;
3. Sex behavior or attitudes;
4. Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, and demeaning behavior;
5. Critical appraisals of other individuals with whom respondents have close family relationships;
6. Legally recognized privileged or analogous relationships, such as those of lawyers, physicians, and ministers;
7. Religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs of the student or the student’s parent

These attitudes are stored in a central database.  The fact that Common Core collects a lot more information than could possibly be helpful for improving the curriculum is raising concerns that attitude modification plans of the Common Core creators are not limited to motivating students. 

A February 2013 USDOE report discusses measuring student attitudes, beliefs, and behavior.  In addition it lists desired competencies or improvement of attitudes such as “appreciation of diversity”.  One competency it lists is “recognizing bias in sources” which is a very subjective competency.

The Obama administration has already used the IRS to harass conservative groups, which raises the concern that parents of children who don't recognize conservative sources as biased might be harassed as well.   One can imagine a scenario where a child who has some reservations about Islam is labeled racist and his parents are determined to be the source of his racism.   Perhaps separation of the child from the negative influence of his parents might be seen as a solution to the problem.

 Common Core Literature and Writing books by Zaner-Bloser teach social activism to six year old children in first grade.   Children are taught how to manipulate others by getting them angry with emotional words.   Reading about this I can't help but think how the Obama administration manipulates Americans with emotional words to get them angry at Republicans.   An example that comes to mind is Obama's accusation against Republicans that they were holding the government hostage when they blocked funding for Obamacare.   A similar example of public manipulation was when the Obama administration blocked access to veteran memorials in order to make the public angry at the Republicans.
Studies have shown that students from fatherless parent families are less likely to be motivated to stay in school than those from two parent families.  If the government wants to motivate students they are more likely to accomplish their goal if instead of collecting personal data on students, they reconsider welfare policies that have been shown to lead to the proliferation of single parent families and antisocial behavior.

Is a Single Curriculum better than Multiple Curricula?

The final question I will consider here is whether one single common curriculum is a good idea.  Students have different abilities.  Some thrive in challenging environments while others perform better in more laid back environments. 

Problems of a single curriculum become problems for everyone and there is reason to believe that the experimental approaches of Common Core are problematic.  Another problem of a single common curriculum is that it makes possible indoctrination by the Federal government on a massive scale.  There are already signs of government indoctrination in Common Core texts that extol the virtues of Obama and Islam.  Common Core blames terrorism on low self esteem.

 The Common Core approved text book World History devotes an entire chapter to promoting  the virtues of Islam and has anti-Israel propaganda spread throughout the book.  State Rep. Ritch Workman told Fox News that  “kids are going to take this book as gospel and believe that Christians and Jews were murderous barbarians and thank God the Muslims came along and the world is great.” 

The Common Core approved book Barack Obama by Jane Sutcliffe indoctrinates children that whites mistreat black people and are racist and therefore didn't want to vote for 'Barack', and only Barack can make the country better.

The Common Core Science Curriculum teaches children that humans are dangerous to the planet, that man made global warming is an accepted incontrovertible fact even though it is not and that government action is required to fix global warming even though the taxes the Obama administration would like to impose on carbon dioxide producers would have a negligible effect on global warming. 

                The focus of a good curriculum should be to teach critical thinking instead of indoctrination.

How to Really Improve Education

Obvious steps are remove legislation that prevents discipline in the classroom and to not level the playing field.  Legislators should not impose a common curriculum that makes all schools the same.  Legislators should not interfere with school choice so that parents can use school vouchers to send children to the best schools for their children.  Legislators should reconsider welfare policies that lead to badly behaved youth.  Our government should step back and allow the free market of education to work without imposing restrictions on what teachers can teach and without passing laws that make it impossible for teachers and principals to bring peace to the classroom.

Thursday, December 5, 2013


Today we are posting:
Part III
Author:   Gamaliel Isaac

Could the Goals of Leveling the Playing Field be Hurting American Competitiveness?
         Dr. Milgram’s statement regarding how State Department of Educations lowered the standards of Common Core may be surprising, after all one would think that the goal of Department of Educations is to see to it that students are well educated.  The degree that other goals can take priority is illustrated by the story of the Shuang Wen School and the New York Department of Education.

Shuang Wen is located in district 1, a district with many progressive schools with lower standards.  I have included a table of ratings by of the performance of school in the same district as Shuang Wen in 2011 to show just how much Shuang Wen outperformed its peer schools.

Anna Silver
Children’s workshop
Earth school
Neighborhood school
East Village
Shuang Wen

           Shuang Wen was a shining light in a mediocre school district.  One would think that the city would have done everything it could to support that school.  Instead the principal of that school was investigated more than a dozen times. 

I think that the high proportion of Chinese students in the Shuang Wen School and their vastly superior performance compared to schools with other minority populations sent a message the DOE did not want heard.  It made the DOE look bad for the poor performance of other schools.  It also sent a message that Chinese outperform other minorities and that didn't fit the ideologies of DOE bureaucrats.  Since the DOE could not raise the performance of the other schools they leveled the playing field by bringing down the Shuang Wen School.  Rather than admit that Chinese students as a whole were more hard working and respectful of their teachers and more devoted to education than large percentages of other minority groups, the DOE blamed Shuang Wen’s principal for the inferior performance of the other schools of District 1.  They looked for reasons to get rid of her and found ridiculous excuses such as her reporting students attending school when they left early in the day to celebrate the Chinese New Year. 

On July 1, 2011 DOE marched into the school with the police.  Trinh Eng, one of the parents at the school told a reporter what happened next.

"One girl, entering her 8th grade year at Shuang Wen, was completely devastated. Teachers held each other and cried," she said. "[When] Principal Ling Ling Chou came out of the building, a thundering, spontaneous round of applause erupted amidst of shouts of  “Thank you.”

The DOE’s hostility to Ling Ling Chou was so great that after parents put up a memorial poster in her honor on a wall in the school the DOE ordered it taken down.

The principal the DOE hated so much had an extraordinary work ethic and devotion to her school.  She knew every student by name and came in on Saturdays to tutor children who needed help.  Students and teachers knew she cared about them and that motivated them.

Two years later Shuang Wen is still a good school but it is not the great school it was when Ling Ling Chou was the principal. 

Perhaps Common Core could have been a great curriculum but because of the influence of DOEs and other groups whose primary goals are not the education of our children it is a very bad curriculum.

Please carefully note the Shuang Wen test score results compared to other schools.  The other school's scores do not come close to those of Shuang Wen.

Note that the English score at Shuang Wen is almost three times higher than those at Anna Silver.   For this success Shuang is punished.   This evidence proves to any sound minded person that the Department of Education does not want the schools to succeed academically.   

The purpose of Common Core is to bring everyone down to the lowest level.   Remember, everyone is supposed to "feel good" about themselves.   Of course, when you bore the more intelligent students with an unchallenging curriculum, they won't bother to try and succeed at a higher level.   In fact the higher level is purposely discouraged.   

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


Today two news stories have been printed.

"It's exactly what critics of the Common Core school curriculum warned about:  Partisan political statements masquerading as English lessons finding their way into elementary school classrooms.

Teaching materials aligned with the controversial national educational standars ask fifth-graders to edit such sentences as "(The president) makes sure the laws of the country are fair,"  "The wants of an individual are less important than the well-being of the nation" and "the commands of government officials must be obeyed by all."  The sentences, which appear in worksheets published by New Jersey-based Pearson Education, are presented not only for their substance, but also to teach children how to streamline bulky writing.

Did someone resurrect Stalin to outline this program?

Every time a Common Core proponent tells me I am imagining things evidence seems to show up that makes my imagination very, very, vivid.

Another story today comes from Georgia.   When elementary school children returned from Thanksgiving vacation all Christmas cards had been removed from the teacher's bulletin boards.   Apparently no religious holiday will be allowed.   Let us see if that will apply to the fabricated holiday of Kwanzaa.        

BY:   Gamaliel Isaac

Is Curriculum the Cause of America’s Poor Worldwide Education Rank?

You can have the best curriculum in the world but if there is no discipline you can’t teach it.  A school staffer at Overbrook High School in Philadelphia told CBS that:
 "It's mayhem. Students are in the halls, they're smoking in the bathroom; cigarettes, marijuana," said a worker at the school, who asked not to be identified. "We can't contain them and it's really hazardous for us working and these kids are not being educated at all."

"It's a zoo in here. Parents really need to come up here and see what's going on in this school because it's ridiculous,"

Asian students who want to study are assaulted by blacks.  In 2010, a federal judge found that black students at South Philadelphia High School had assaulted and harassed Asian students daily -- for years but the principal said she did not call police because she did not want to "criminalize" the black students.

Laws prevent public schools from taking effective action to stop the violence.  John Hood in an article for the Foundation of Economic Education wrote:

“A host of administrative decisions, court rulings, and legislative actions have created such a maze of regulations that school principals and teachers are often unable to exercise meaningful control over their schools. Furthermore, the prevailing “ethos” in the education establishment—made up of researchers, administrators, and bureaucrats—is suspicious of many forms of punishment, and exhibits a fixation with “sensitivity training” and building self-esteem among students.”

                One would think that if the Obama administration was serious about improving education they would remove the regulations that interfere with classroom discipline.  Instead in response to higher number of blacks being suspended than whites, President Obama issued anexecutive orderwhich effectively placed “quotas” on school discipline based on race.  If there are more disruptive blacks than Chinese in a school and you suspend the blacks you could face possible civil rights violation charges.

    I often walk by what was once the Irving School in New York.   The discipline at the Irving school was so bad that pupils threw a chair out of a window and killed a woman walking below.   It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that academic performance was unlikely to have been stellar at the Irving School.

            The performance of the pupils in the Irving school was low even by New York City standards; in fact it was so low that the Bloomberg administration decided to give the school an ultimatum.  They were told to make curriculum changes and that if the scores of the school didn't go up they'd be closed.   The teachers made the curriculum changes, the students continued to fail and the school was closed.   The school might have had a chance if instead of changing the curriculum police had been stationed in the hallways.

The building that housed the Irving School now houses one of the Success Academy Charter schools.  That school outperforms most New York City schools.  One of the reasons it does is discipline.  According to, Success Academy schools are famous for a no-nonsense attitude toward bad behavior. Defiant kids who don't obey the conspicuously posted school rules quickly earn punishments ranging from brief timeouts to school suspensions.

There is evidence that American classrooms that are disciplined perform well.  African American and Hispanic students have more discipline problems than white students.  The filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan pointed out in the New York Post that if you pull out schools which are predominantly African-American and Hispanic, the data show that the rest of the kids are being taught better in America than anywhere else in the world.

The Common Core curriculum is likely to reduce discipline.  The Common Core Curriculum requires that teachers teach boring informational texts such as long passages in EPA handbooks about insulation levels.  Jeremiah Chaffee, a high school English teacher in upstate New York wrote that he was struck by how out of sync the Common Core is with what he considers to be good teaching and that “Such pedagogy makes school wildly boring.”  One alarmed high-school English teacher, reporting on a Common Core training session that used the Gettysburg Address as an example, noted that teachers were instructed to read the speech aloud to the class not as Lincoln would have spoken it, with power and emotion, but rather without inflection.  A past president of the National Council of Teachers of English declared herself “aghast at the vision of the dreariness and harshness of the classrooms [the standards-writers] attempt to create.”

If the creators of Common Core want children to learn they should be designing a curriculum that instills a love of learning instead of making learning an unpleasant chore.  If they want disciplined classrooms they should make the material exciting.   If the U.S. government wants Americans to be more competitive on the world stage, instead of creating boring curricula, its primary focus should be repealing laws that prevent administrators from bringing discipline to the classroom. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Travesty Called Common Core

The following essay is Part I of IV parts on 
Common Core.  

This was written by my friend Gamaliel Isaac.

Through my many years of research regarding educational issues;   I have witnessed the progress of the changing of our culture through the schools.   Many leaders believe that our nation needs to be changed from a Republic with freedom from the government to a Socialist/Communist nation where everyone is controlled by the government.   In order to accomplish this they needed to start with the children in the schools.    The people in charge knew that most people "trusted" the teachers in the schools.   After all,  just about everyone had a teacher in their family or at least knew a teacher.   What most people didn't know was that the "teachers" had been indoctrinated.

The leaders have gradually dumbed down the curriculum and injected the philosophy of the left by progressively changing the values, beliefs and behavior of our students on a daily basis.   Before "Common Core" there was a program called "Values Clarification."   This was the teaching of the Religion of Secular Humanism in the classroom.   It is and was taught in the classroom on a daily basis in every grade level.  Now we have the final step.  It is called COMMON CORE.

This article is about the travesty called the Common Core Standards.  Its design began before Obama was elected but I and others refer to it as Obamacore because Obama played a major role in imposing it on the country, and like Obamacare it was passed without being read, and it involves centralized data collection of private information.  States across the U.S. signed on to Obamacore because they were bribed with stimulus funds.  As parents became aware of the changes that were made to their children’s education many joined organizations to oppose it.  Many insightful and alarming critiques have been written regarding the danger of Common Core.  There are fears that Common Core is paving the way for indoctrination of American students by centralizing control of education, collecting massive amount of data on students, and telling teachers what they must and must not teach.  There are reports that scores have dropped when the Common Core was adopted and that a curriculum designed to meet the Common Core standards would only prepare students for entry level courses in nonselective community colleges

James Milgram, the only mathematician in the Common Core validation committee , refused to sign off on the math standards.  He said that Common Core math standards would put students two years behind those of high-achieving countries.  He told the Texas state legislature that Common Core standards are, “in large measure a political document that . . . is written at a very low level and does not adequately reflect our current understanding of why the math programs in the high-achieving countries give dramatically better results.” 

He said:  “I had considerable influence on the mathematics standards in the document. However, as is often the case, there was input from many other sources -- including State Departments of Education -- that had to be incorporated into the standards…  A number of these sources were mainly focused on things like making the standards as non-challenging as possible. Others were focused on making sure their favorite topics were present, and handled in the way they liked.”

Dr. Milgram added that it led to a number of “extremely serious failings” in the Common Core that made it premature for any state hoping to improve math scores to implement them and that the Core Math standards were designed to reflect very low expectations.

          The Common Core standards are low compared to those of high achieving countries but a study by the Thomas Fordham Institute found that the Common Core English standards are higher than those of 37 states and the math standards are higher than those of 39 states.  The reason for this is that states dumbed down their minimum standards so they could show they were meeting their standards and get No Child Left Behind money.  Previously it was easy for a school to exceed the minimum state standards.  Common Core imposes a low level curriculum on schools which dictate what to teach and what not to teach.  

Why are the standards of Common Core low when the ostensible purpose of Common Core is to raise the performance of American students?  One can find the answer in a document by the American Federation of Teachers which states that one of the goals of Common Core is to “close the intolerable achievement gap between minority and non-minority students.”  It’s much easier to close the gap by lowering standards than to raise the performance of poorly performing students and no teacher or school administrator wants to be in the position where their jobs depend on getting students to perform. 

There are ideological reasons to lower standards as well.  Common Core instructions tell teachers to “avoid giving any background context” to texts on the grounds that Common Core’s close reading strategy “forces students to rely exclusively on the text instead of privileging background knowledge, and levels the playing field for all.” 

The ideology reason given above is to level the playing field although the argument that leaving out background information will somehow do that is ridiculous.  Those making that argument should be going to school instead of designing a curriculum for schools.

Common Core tests do not emphasize getting the right answer.  Instead they focus on essay questions, which makes possible grading in such a way that underperforming minority groups score as well as high performing groups. 

The other goal of Common Core stated by the American Federation of Teachers is to help American students compete in the global economy.  That raises the question “Is the reason for America’s poor economic performance low standards?” 

Tomorrow Part II