The sorry state of education in America has been documented ad nauseum in this space as have numerous stories of male and female teachers who have sexually violated underaged students. Other less sensational but almost equally disturbing activities are going on in Amerca’s schools and also demand attention.
Many public schools and school districts have been taken over by so-called progressives who have undermined the primary purposes of education by focusing on creating a false sense of self-esteem in students, accenting diversity and multiculturalism over teaching, and hiring liberal nicompoops.
The results have been failing schools, failing students, and declining standards and the situation is getting worse.
Out on the Left Coast, that bastion of unreconstructed liberalism, the Los Angeles United School District, where dropout rates average 20.3%, is considering a smoke and mirrors change in graduation requirements. (http://cbsloc.al/HZx3Kv)
Under the proposed changes, by 2016 all LA public high school students would be required to take and complete “advanced courses” including a third year of math plus two years of a foreign language with a minimum grade of “C” if they want to graduate and to prepare them for college-level courses, all admirable new standards but flawed even if they are implemented as proposed.
The fly in the education ointment is that under the plan, high schoolers would only be required to take 170 education units instead of the current 230 thereby reducing their course load by a whopping 26%.
The effective consequence of the innovations is that kids will learn significantly less and taxpayers will get less bang for their tax bucks while the LAUFSD can boast it is modernizing curriculum and discouraging dropouts.
The probabilities are that course standards will be lowered to assure students attain the coveted “C” grade and the dropout rate won’t be measurably reduced since failing, semi-literate kids still won’t be able to meet any challenging standards.
Meanwhile, Virginia music teacher Jean Flaherty is making a progressive stand for diversity and against old-fashioned, non-politically correct values and beliefs. Ms. Flaherty has taken it upon herself to delete God.
Broadus Wood Elementary School teacher Flaherty was preparing her 4th and 5th grade charges to perform Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie’s “We Are The World.” Bless her liberal soul, she didn’t want to offend atheists so she deleted the song’s objectionable references to “God” in the third line and in the third verse.
Flaherty edited the flagrantly religious third line, ”We are all a part of God’s great big family,” in favor of her own lyrics, ”We are all a part of one great big family,” and she expunged the third verse’s retrogressive inspiration, ”As God has shown us by turning stones to bread,” and substituted, ”We can’t let them suffer; no we cannot turn away.”
Everyone was happy with Ms. Flaherty’s revisions of “We Are The World,” except for the vast majority of students and parents who happened not to be atheists and were very offended that they eradicated God. (http://bit.ly/ILM4xa)
Also in Virginia, a 60 year old vocational school teacher at the William H. Neff Center apparently was having his students concentrate on proper welding techniques.
As any thinking teacher tries to do, Manuael Ernest Dillow wanted to get the attention of his welding class students. However, unlike any sane instructor, he chose to scare their pants off to motivate them.
Dillow lined up a dozen students against a wall much like Al Capone’s boys did for the Saint Valentine’s Day massacre and as if they were about to be mowed down by a firing squad. He then pointed a handgun, not a machine gun, at them and fired some 4-10 shots.
Dillow was actually shooting blanks in his non-shooting spree but the kids weren’t aware of that detail. There’s no word on whether he succeeded in getting their undivided attention but he did get the attention of local police.
No students were injured but Dillow was arrested, charged with 12 felonies for brandishing a firearm on school grounds, and faces up to sixty years in prison and as much as $30,000 in fines, proving once again that you can lead a prospective welder to a flame but you can get burned if you aim a gun at them. (http://bit.ly/I6YCzC)
Educational malpractice is rampant in America’s public schools and pro forma alterations in graduation standards such as those proposed in Los Angeles and exorcising God from songs and threatening to shoot students in Virginia only exacerbate the fundamental issue that our education establishment may be irreparably broken thanks to progressivism.