WARWICK, R.I. –
Government school administrators seem to be dumbing down faster than their students. Now school administrators at the Pilgrim High School are worried that a student’s mural depicting a marriage between a man and a woman might offend gays and others opposed to traditional marriage.
She sketched a mural that showed the growth of a boy into adulthood. The last image showed a man with a woman and child and wedding rings over their heads.
Bierenday showed the school’s assistant principal the sketches, which were approved. When she started to paint the mural last week, when an assistant principal said that Some people at the school felt the mural didn’t accurately represent many of Pilgrim’ students. In other words, some people were offended that a traditional marriage was being depicted because in their minds it slighted gay marriage. So, school officials decided to paint over the right side of the mural showing the marriage of a man and a woman
Warwick Superintendent Peter Horoschak said he just found out about the issue on Thursday and sided with Bierenday saying she should be allowed to paint her original design.
NBC 10 spoke with a few parents and they agreed with the superintendent that the mural should be shown as Bierenday intended.
On Friday, Bierenday spoke with John DePetro on WPRO-AM about the mural and said she was told that her original design may be offensive or a religious symbol.
Small wonder kids are not learning history, English or math. Government schools these days are too busy forcing politically correct propaganda down our kids throats while ignoring sound educational standards.
by Bill Korach
California SB 48, introduced by Se, Mark Leno, San Francisco, requires teaching that gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered people made an important contribution to the development of California and the United States. Many Californians do not welcome this law. It is not clear that transgendered people even existed because, well, there was no operation for it in historic America. A San Clemente resident writes in the Orange County Register:
SAN CLEMENTE, Stan Wasbin: When is it OK to break the law? The question comes to mind when pondering Senate Bill 48, the recently enacted legislation that requires “instruction in social sciences to also include a study of the role and contributions of
“. . . lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans . . . to the development of California and the United States.” For a variety of reasons this intrusive, unnecessary and inappropriate mandate ought to be ignored
Compliance with SB48 would require spending money to buy new textbooks and develop new curricula subject to state scrutiny and approval. At a time when school districts are strapped financially, it is unacceptable for Sacramento to force them to spend nonexistent dollars solely to brainwash our children with politically correct thought that most parents oppose.
Moreover, why should teachers be forced to spend any time addressing historical figures’ sexual orientations? The topic is as relevant to their “role and contributions” as it is to their astrological signs. And, given how limited a teacher’s class time is, each district would have to consider what to delete from the current social sciences curriculum to make room to teach what SB 48 requires
The writer reasonably points out that teachers barely have enough time to teach kids basics in English and math. US Educational standards in government schools are nothing to crow about. American kids rank 25 in math and science-that is to say they are in the bottom third of developed nations in the world. One third of 4th graders are functionally illiterate, and drop out rates are at an all time high. Is this really a good time to mandate another politically correct feel good program? The Orange County Register letter shares his low opinion of the bill’s educational benefits.
Who can name a transgender American of sufficient importance that Sacramento must coerce teachers to spend precious class time on? If you cannot name one, then see SB48 for what it is: The work of legislative bullies unable to impose their agenda without resorting to force – the force of law. But just as a soldier is forbidden to obey an illegal command, school districts ought not obey this foolish law. Besides, the districts are the ones who should be making the decisions over what we teach our children in public schools.
SB 48 is the worst kind of political pandering to the homosexual special interest lobby. It is bad because it offers no benefit, it harms students by distracting them from more important topics, and it encourages a warped view of morality. Maybe that is why school spending continues to skyrocket while learning and educational standards decline on our public educational system.
by Bill Korach
The officials of the Stall Brook Elementary School in Bellingham, Massachusetts dropped “God” from the Lee Greenwood song “God Bless the USA.” “God Bless the USA” was scheduled for an assembly, but an unnamed administrator decided to change the words to “We Love the USA.” Parents strongly objected and the Stall Brook School relented.
Superintendent of Schools Edward Fluery says he’s sorry if the change was considered disrespectful.
“Political correctness is certainly a consideration in the public sector,” Fluery said in a statement. “There are traditional parts of our culture that are sacred, and we certainly had no intent to disrespect that culture.”
Superintendant Fluery’s statement provides a startling insight into the mentality and lack of commons sense abroad in the public school system today. Educational standards, accepted morality, math, science are all sacrificed at the altar of political correctness. The antidote to this kind of silliness, is common sense and involvement of parents as demonstrated by the Bellingham parent’s successful reversal of the Stall Brook officlal’s wrong headed decision to remove God for “God Bless the USA.
Lee Greenwood told Fox News:
“The most important word in the whole piece of music is the word God, which is also in the title ‘God Bless The USA,”“Maybe the school should have asked the parents their thoughts before changing the lyrics to the song. They could have even asked the writer of the song, which I of course, would have said you can’t change the lyrics at all or any part of the song,” he said.According to Greenwood, the lyrics, “God bless the USA” has a “very important meaning for those in the military and their families, as well as new citizens coming into our country.”Greenwood said the song as written is played at naturalization ceremonies behind the national anthem.“If the song is good enough to be played and performed in its original setting under those circumstances, it surely should be good enough for our children,”Greenwood said the school could have asked the writer his thoughts.
“Which I of course would have said you can’t change the lyrics at all or any part of the song. The most important word in the whole piece of music is the word ‘God,’ which is also in the title “God Bless The U.S.A.,” he said.“We can’t take God out of the song, we can’t take God out of The Pledge of Allegiance, we can’t take God off of the American currency.”
by Kim Kendall
(Kim Kendall is a Republican candidate for the Florida House of Representatives for the newly created 17th District. The 17 District centers on St. Augustine. Ms. Kendall offers her views on education. editor)
Since I have two children in the public school system, nothing means more to me personally, than the education provided them. With the fast pace of technology and global competition for jobs, we need to maintain focus and bring forth the best resources for our teachers and students.
First, we need to start with house cleaning… we have entirely too much going on in the classroom that distracts the focus of educating our children. We must repeal No Child Left Behind, eliminate FCATs, and we need to tremendously downsize the 1,029 Florida Department of Education employees. We should keep the end-of-course exams – and classroom assessments are good – but we need to have an additional staff person conducting them, which the state needs to fund!
Next, our parents should have the right to choose what school setting is best for their kids! No matter if your child performs well in a public, private, charter, blended, virtual, or home school setting – any option should not be looked down upon. With a father in the military, I was in nine public schools growing up, and I know how critical it is for our military families to have as many resources and options as possible.
And, yes, education in Florida needs more funding – but we still need to be good stewards of our money as well! Education used to be the largest pie piece in the budget and it should return to that position. But we should not fund education by raiding the Transportation Trust Fund. That is an unacceptable answer. We MUST grow the economy and cut places that are frivolous.
I am currently working on doing just that – with two specific economic development initiatives – one in education and one in the aerospace industry, since my 10 year career was as a FAA Air Traffic Controller.
Finally, we need to focus in on the advancement of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) – the demand for occupations in these areas is growing quickly and we need to make sure our Florida students are achieving the proper learning levels needed to enter the workforce upon graduation!
–For more information about Kim Kendall:
Kim J. Kendall for Florida House
(editor: Dr. Saxton, PhD. Harvard and I collaborated on “The Teacher’s Guide to Islam-Biased Textbooks ” released last month. The Guide has been sent to over 50,000 school boards in the United States in order to correct misleading and biased material contained in 25 national k-12 textbooks. Dr. Saxton describes his successful meeting with the Palm Beach School Board, and their agreement to use the CFNS Teacher’s Guide to correct the errors in the misleading textbooks.)
Florida is the third largest buyer of elementary and high school textbooks in the nation – and its Palm Beach County (PBC) school district is the country’s 11th largest. What happens here with K-12 textbooks sets an example for all of America.
On March 28, 2012, CFNS publicly addressed the Palm Beach County School Board regarding a textbook whose content it views as Islam-biased and anti-Israel. Here are excerpts from the statement of CFNS’s Chairman.
“Good afternoon. I am Dr. William A. Saxton, and I am Chairman of Citizens for National Security, an all-volunteer, nonprofit 501(c)(3) Public Charity.
Thank you for allowing me these few minutes.
I am here to oppose the County’s local adoption and purchase of the 2013 world history textbook known as WORLD HISTORY, by Ellis et al, published by Pearson Prentice Hall.
Our organization has performed research on K-12 history and geography textbooks for over three years and published the results in two landmark documents.
We have found considerable misinformation, bias and omissions in the content of some of textbooks used in Palm Beach County and elsewhere in the past – and now including this new proposed textbook.
More specifically, we have found this textbook’s content to contain bias in favor of Islam, at the expense of Christianity and Judaism – and to be similarly biased against Israel.
Almost three months ago, a meeting was organized by some of your County’s curriculum specialists with the publisher’s representative in Loxahatchee – at which I was invited to participate – in order to address the flawed content.
This was a model for the way these issues should be addressed. It’s the way it should be done, and serves as a fine example for the rest of the country.
After 4-1/2 hours, there was unanimous agreement on more-correct language by all present – including the publisher’s representative.
But unfortunately, no recommendations were accepted back at Pearson. The book stands as originally written. And we never even got to the most egregious Islam bias that is summarized here in my handouts.
I also call your attention to our latest resource – a 91-page Teacher’s Guide that addresses the pro-Islam, anti-Israel, content of this textbook [Pearson Prentice Hall’s 2013 “WORLD HISTORY” to which CFNS is opposed] in greater detail – and addresses other flawed textbooks as well.
I only have one copy of this to leave for you, but will make other copies available at your request. Or, you may download your own copies from our Web site – www.CFNS.US or www.CITIZENSFORNATIONALSECURITY.US.
Thank you, once again, for your time.”
When Dr. Saxton concluded, Board members discussed his statement openly for almost 25 minutes. According to veteran observers in the crowded public gallery, this was an unusual occurrence for that type of School Board meeting. The Board was most hospitable and courteous to Dr. Saxton, with members commending and thanking him on several occasions for bringing the textbook matter to their attention.
CFNS has been advised that if the Pearson textbook does ultimately get used in Palm Beach County, its curriculum specialists will convene “professional development” training for teachers who will be briefed about the pro-Islam and anti-Israel misinformation and intentional omissions. We are told that the cornerstone for these sessions will be our recently released, CFNS-authored “Teacher’s Guide for Corrections to Islam-Biased Content in Florida’s K-12 Textbooks”!
Previously, CFNS had succeeded in convincing Palm Beach County school officials NOT to purchase “Modern World: Patterns of Interaction,” arguably the most egregious of all Islam-biased high-school textbooks.
CFNS had also played a major role in getting an agreement from publisher McGraw-Hill to make requested content changes regarding Islam and Israel in its new textbook, “World Geography and Cultures.”
CIA Director vs. Tampa School Board
Intelligence vs. Arrogance…regarding CAIR and your Child’s Education
By Randy McDaniels
Former CIA Director James Woolsey, spoke to the High Noon Clubin Oklahoma addressing CAIR in relation to their threat to national security and the fact CAIR is working to undermine the United States, while in stark contrast the Tampa School Board held a “workshop” only after considerable pressure from a rapidly growing contingent of concerned parents and civic groups regarding guest speakers from CAIR in numerous public school classes over the past several years.
The Controversy erupted when emails between history teacher Kelly Miliziano and CAIR’s Hassan Shibly, as well asCAIR’s Facebook page posts which stated CAIR had been speaking regularly in the public school system surfaced in December 2011.
Director Woolsey, arguably one of the nation’s leading intelligence experts during an interview with Channel 9 news on Friday said “the group [CAIR] is an extremist Muslim group with ties to terrorists.” He also said “It [CAIR] was clearly in the business of helping send funds to a terrible, totalitarian terrorist organization: Hamas.”
Hassan Shibly, Exec. Dir of CAIR Tampa has significant controversy surrounding him as well. He was kicked out of the university of Buffalo’s Student Body for his bias, has praised Hezbollah, and his family has close ties to President Assad, as well as the now deceased Grand Mufti Kuftaro of Syria who stood by Assad when he was committing atrocities and torture against his own peoples.
CAIR leaders have stated they want Sharia to be the LAW of the LAND in America and Education was vehicle through which they would accomplish that mission.
Hassan Shibly supports Sharia Law, recently lobbying Tallahassee and misinforming the community about the nature of SB 1360, which did not make it to the floor for the final vote after passing overwhelmingly in the house and passing both Senate Subcommittees.
With the exception of School Board Member Dr. Stacy White, the School Board continues to express disdain and arrogance at having to deal with this issue.
“I resent having this conversation in the first place,” School Board member April Griffin said. “I don’t want to craft a policy based on bullying, based on people coming forward demanding we do something because they don’t like the way we do things.”
In contrast, The FBI has had a policy which formally severed all ties to CAIR since 2009 and President Obama signed a “Bill” in November, 2011 affirming the FBI Policy…formally making the policy of cutting ties to CAIR and other unindicted co-conspirators in regard to terrorism a matter of LAW.
However, The Tampa School Board is defiantly unwilling to craft a policy to protect our children and formally cut ties to CAIR, a Federally Designated HAMAS entity and a Co-Conspirator in the largest successfully prosecuted terrorism Funding Case in U.S. History. The U.S. vs. HLF trial of 2008 resulted in CAIR members being sentence up to 65 years in federal prison and all defendants being found guilty.
The additional 246 individuals and organizations were to be subsequently tried in future prosecutions to include one scheduled for April, 2010 listing defendant Omar Ahmad, Co-founder of CAIR, however Attorney General Eric Holder quashed this and future proceedings despite a mountain of evidence and guilty verdicts on all 108 counts.
The FBI was able to draft a policy barring dealings with groups like CAIR, which was the basis for subsequent U.S. Law banning dealings with CAIR, and other Co-conspirators… then one, would surely think that those enlightened individuals tasked with educating the future generation of American leaders would be capable of doing likewise.
Terry Kemple, the local leader of the Education Coalition submitted a policy draft to Tom Gonzalez, Attorney for the School Board. This draft in regard to co-conspirators is similar to the law President Obama signed in November and reads as follows:
“In determining whether a speaker has the appropriate experience and/or credentials necessary to promote a scholarly discussion of the topic being considered, the following may be considered:
1) Academic or professional credentials of the potential speaker;
2) Whether the potential speaker has been convicted of, indicted for, or listed in an indictment as an unindicted co-conspirator involved in, the commission of a felony under the laws of the United States, or a State thereof;
3) Whether the potential speaker represents, is an officer or employee of, is paid by, or is publicly associated with any organization;
A. Whether such organization is primarily an advocacy, as opposed to an educational, organization;
B. Whether the organization has a 501(c)(3) designation from the IRS;
C. Whether the organization has been convicted of, indicted for, or listed in an indictment as an unindicted co-conspirator involved in, the commission of a felony under the laws of the United States, or a State thereof;
D. Whether any current or past officer of the organization has been convicted of, indicted for, or listed in an indictment as an unindicted co-conspirator involved in, the commission of a felony under the laws of the United States, or a State thereof.
Candy Olson and the majority of the Tampa School Board members staunchly defend the ability of the principals and teachers to be able to vet Islamic speakers, yet they have not even been able to detect or vet textbooks which they have used for years regarding Islamic Indoctrination and have allowed a HAMAS entity to influence our children for at least three years.
In a two year study a report recently released by ACT! for America; of the leading textbooks used in History and Social Studies Classes across America, all (38) textbooks have disparaging biases, omission, and counter factual narratives regarding Islam.
A summary of this report was sent via Certified Mail to over 70,000 Superintendents and School Board Members in the country earlier this month.
Some textbooks taught that Jesus was a Palestinian, that Muslims discovered America, and in one Florida approved English textbooknot in the report, Professor Ihsan Bagby, misleads students and promotes the CAIR narrative of Muslim victimhood despite FBI hate crime statistics which crush this false claim.
Bagby, a National Board member of CAIR is on record for stating “Ultimately we [Muslims] can never be full citizen of this country…. Because there is no way we can be fully committed to the institutions and ideologies of this country.”(Political Activities of Muslims in America, Oxford university Press, 1991)
The fact is, many educators are barely familiar with the term Sharia Law or Islamic doctrine and do not possess any real knowledge in this regard…. Therefore how can these well meaning educators safeguard our children from something they do not understand?
“Schools are fertile grounds where the seeds of ISLAM can be sowed inside the hearts of Non-Muslim students.”www.dawanet.com
“I am waging a “bloodless” revolution, promoting world cultures and faiths in America’s classrooms”. (Shabbir Mansouri Council on Islamic Education which provides virtually all Islamic Content in Public School Textbooks).
CAIR’s National Spokesman said “I wouldn’t want to create the impression that I wouldn’t like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future. But I’m not going to do anything violent to promote that. I’m going to do it through education.” (Statement by CAIR Ibrahim Hooper, Minneapolis Star Tribune, April 4, 1993)
CIA Director James Woolsey, during his interview in regard to CAIR, told Channel 9 News in Oklahoma “Sometimes people are friendly and they’re nice people. Sometimes people are friendly and they’re masking something else they’re doing.”
What do you think….. Does CAIR likely have an ulterior agenda?
The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ), is non-partisan group that wants more rigorous standards applied to Teacher’s Colleges. Teacher’s college’s are the schools that educate public school teachers, and the teacher’s colleges are resisting reform and accountability. NCTQ says that states are doing a poor job evaluating teachers prep programs. Standards are so weak that only 31 of 1400 programs were rated subpar according to the United States Department of Education. NCTQ explains the reason they are pushing for new standards:
Both program approval standards set by states and accreditation standards set by private organizations provide no indication of the quality of one institution’s preparation relative to another. Admittedly, this is by design; both the state and the accreditation agencies do not rate or rank schools because accreditation is a pass/fail system that determines whether preparation providers meet national professional standards. But, unfortunately, this leaves consumers—aspiring teachers and schools which hire teachers—in the dark.
Further, a relatively small number of the more than 1,400 schools of education in the country have ever lost program approval by their states or had their regional accreditation withdrawn. This may lead consumers to the conclusion that the roughly 1,400 schools are performing at a satisfactory level, which is just not the case. While accrediting agencies have expressed a commitment to utilize the student performance data to drive program improvement from state data systems now under construction, not a single study has found that an accredited school of education is of higher quality than non-accredited schools.
As a nonpartisan research and policy organization committed to ensuring that every child has an effective teacher, NCTQ is stepping into this vacuum to help consumers distinguish between good, bad, and mediocre education schools. We do so by setting the bar higher than it has been set traditionally.
NCTQ says that the accreditation agencies are not doing their job and should be replaced by new, higher standards:
Here’s just one example (from the many that can be pulled from our various ed school reports) of the difference between an NCTQ evaluation and the standard accreditation process. The typical accreditation agency says that, when it comes to admissions, education schools must have multiple standards that are clearly described and well-advertised. The agency does not specify, however, what these standards must be. NCTQ says that the institution should only accept teacher candidates who are in the top half of the college-going population.
NCTQ sued the State of Wisconsin teacher’s colleges for refusing to turn over information needed to assess the programs. Teacher’s colleges are strongly resisting reform and accountability by calling NCTQ’s evaluation system flawed. Sharon Robinson, president of the Colleges for Teacher Education, an advocacy group for Teacher’s colleges said: “The project is so fundamentally flawed it is not worthy of engagement.”
Kate Walsh, president of NCTQ says:
This is nothing but the colleges of education closing ranks to keep the public from getting insight into the quality of their programs.”
by Bill Korach
Earlier this month, this publication reported about the fight of New Hampshire parent fight against the International Baccalaureate (IB) in the Merrimack Valley School District. The IB program has been criticized by families and conservative groups because it teaches ideas alien to American law and tradition. The IB programs are a direct result of the Clinton administration’s support for the UN’s Agenda 21. Agenda 21 mandates that American schools teach certain concepts like social justice (redistribution of wealth), global warming, and socialist economics that have not been embraced by the American public and fly in the face of American law.
New Hampshire citizens, spoke out against the instruction and won a victory in the New Hampshire State Legislature. Lawmakers approved HB 1403, 209-201, allowing parents to pull their children from any school using the International Baccalaureate program, prompted by concerned parents in the Merrimack ValleySchool District. The House Education Committee amendment, however, changed it so no school can be approved by the state unless it “promotes state and national sovereignty and is not subject to the governance of a foreign body or organization. “The bill also establishes a committee to study the International Baccalaureate program. Rep. Ralph Boehm, a Litchfield Republican, asked the House,
“Do we want our students indoctrinated to be world citizens or citizens of the United States?”
Mary Stuart Gile, a Concord Democrat, said “this is the 21st century and our children, whether you like it or not, are the next generation of global and American citizens.” A leftist-organization supporting IB instruction was quick to lend their voices to the attack against the vote:
This isn’t so much anti-public education as an expression of a small minded suspicion and fear about things foreign to our “American” way. It is also another way to chip away at compulsory attendance – seeing the “government-run” schools as a source of beliefs alien to those with certain political beliefs.
Perhaps the one room school house of legend had values, and educational standards that we would do well to emulate today. Hard work, discipline, a neighborly spirit, and a dedicated teacher we enough to produce some fine citizens. Maybe we need to spend more time building character and less time constructing expensive buildings. My good friend and neighbor Tim Palmer describes his learning experience in a one room school house near Spokane, Washington in the 1950’s. editor
A Grade School to Be Proud Of
by Captain Tim Palmer, USN, ret.
Education is different these days. When I was growing up, my brother and I attended a one room school, which housed eight grades who were taught by one teacher. To this day, I am very proud of having attended that small country school.
My twin brother and I were raised on a farm near the small town of Daisy, Washington, located about 75 miles north of Spokane. The population was relatively sparse, even for a farm community. Our school consisted of a one-room building (pictured) that hosted eight grades and were taught by a single teacher. The playground
consisted of one swing set and a see-saw. Bathroom facilities consisted of an outhouse located at the back of the property. The average attendance at the school ran from 15 to 25 students, with no specific concentration in any one grade except ours. My brother and I were in the largest class, six students, and therefore he and I constituted one third of that group. Our teacher (Mrs. Hazel DeWitt) was a lady in her late thirties who was also married to one of the local farmers. She had received her teaching certificate after attending two years of college, the requirement at that time (early 1950s). Mrs. Dewitt was the epitome of a teacher (in my opinion). She could be a stern disciplinarian, yet she was compassionate and sympathetic. She was always engaged in challenging the students, whether they were in the first grade or the eighth grade. As well, she was exceptionally organized and could keep the entire student body occupied in some form of learning at all times. Because she was both teacher and principal, discipline problems were handled immediately and expulsion was a distinct possibility to those who crossed the behavior line. I don’t remember anyone who was afraid of Mrs. Dewitt, but everyone respected her.
Although we were attending a small country school, we thought we were lucky to be able to learn things the other grades were studying and be mixed in with the “big kids”. When our family moved to a small town after the fifth grade, Tom and I had no problem assimilating academically in the much larger classes.
All the parents supported the school in some way. Many alternated in bringing lunches to all of the students, particularly in the winter time. Reflecting back, I think the lunch program was created to ensure all of the children had something good to eat, given the economic diversity of the farm families.
Our little Daisy school didn’t compare in resources to much larger school systems, but it prepared us for life as well as any, and taught us about American exceptionalism. I do not know what happened to all of the former students, but I do know that several graduated from college and went on to business and government careers. My brother became an entrepreneur, owning and operating two successful businesses. I graduated from Washington State University and joined the Navy where I enjoyed a thirty year career as a Naval Aviator.
Maybe my old one room Daisy School still has lessons to teach