Anatomy of Tax-Funded Schools
Thursday, December 18, 2914
Racial Quotas for School Misconduct
Obama exempts certain students who could have been his son from school punishment.
Tuesday, December 2, 2014
Racial Quotas for School Misconduct
Obama exempts certain students who could have been his son from school punishment.
Tuesday, December 2, 2014
In my years of teaching English in public high schools, it became clear early on how salaried bureaucrats dutifully pigeonholed or tagged students with performance levels. And why wouldn't a salaried bureaucrat do exactly this? First, they are exempt from such designation; they are after all teachers whose pen is buried thoroughly in state-sanctioned, official paperwork. No one is evaluating their abilities. No one is evaluating their performance except assistance principals and principals who know next to nothing about the subject being taught in the room where they are evaluating the teacher. So kids become end-user pawns of the state, and it's the teachers who facilitate this work. In this way, teachers are like jailers. Overseers who run the state apparatus. And why wouldn't they be? Teachers after all earn their pay through daily attendance. So if a kid finds the classroom reading boring or if it's a subject he cannot stand and therefore performs poorly in, the teachers will be right there submitting official paperwork that will leave a lasting imprint on the kid's self image. So teachers who make a great effort to encourage a kid, to raise him up against all odds, is tasked with strapping him to an age in his past that is associated with awkward development. designations. If a kid can't read well or is labelled far-below-basic or remedial, his school and compliant teacher will try to break his spirit by making those years more permanent and give him and his family something to dangle over their heads. My point is don't let the public school tell who or what your kid can or cannot be. Talent he has already. It will emerge through his own efforts and through the efforts of those who recognize him. You can recognize his talents. And I recommend that you do so.
Monday, November 17, 2014
RIGHTS DO NOT COME FROM THE GOVERNMENT
You've seen it making the rounds on the internet. You've seen the video and read the lesson. Rights do not come from the government and therefore cannot be given to you by any entity, government or otherwise. Rights come with you when you are born. If you are born and occupy your body, you have rights. What those rights are are delineated mainly by common sense and guided by religion. There are both negative and positive sanctions for everything that we do, so be mindful of this. If nothing else, people love to condemn and judge the misdeeds of other people. Just sayin'.
Take a look at this awful lesson that tries to convince the student that his rights come from government. There is an attendant video showing this lesson. I can understand the confusion, because
Friday, October 10, 2014
This is the best, most comprehensive critique of the public school system that I have ever read. You might find it enlightening as well. But be prepared. If you're a proponent of public school education, you may find this disturbing. Disturbing but enlightening.
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
It is not difficult to locate or feature the deterioration of moral and civic values in the public school system. Enough instances of it show up in the press daily to keep any observer on his toes. Just learned this evening that LAUSD accepted an armored personnel carrier and a rocket launcher. That's right. Courtesy of the U.S. military. The Pentagon is making your neighborhoods, um, safe? What in the world is the district thinking? What in the world is the Pentagon doing? With other municipalities, the Pentagon has put conditions on the possession of this type of military equipment: use it or lose it. The report states that the LAUSD police received the armored personnel carrier in July 2014, and received the rocket launchers 14 years ago following 9/11. Neither have been used, and according to the LAUSD police chief, neither are really part of their "mission." I'd like to know what the Pentagon is encouraging its citizens to do with this equipment. What's the LAUSD police chief going to do, use it to pick up truant 6th graders? The absurdity is astonishing. Truly. And CBS News reports on it as though the issue is urgent. This is a frightening trend.
UPDATE, Monday, September 22: LASPD to return 3 of the rocket launchers it received from the Pentagon or Homeland Security.
Friday, September 5, 2014
Tax-funded schools adjust the values that you taught your children. The schools are not an ideological extension of the parents. The schools are competition to the parents. Now it is true that you may not know all of the different trends in the different disciplines--science, math, history, English, and so forth--but what I am talking about are the values imposed on your kids through all of the organizations that compete for your kid's mind.
Today's public schools pride themselves in teaching tolerance. It's part of the "all inclusive" mantra from No Child Left Behind. There are many forms of tolerance, many reasons why an individual refrains himself from acting or speaking. But when the tax-funded schools impose tolerance on kids it is of a different kind. Tax-funded schools teach kids to be tolerant to Jews, to gays, to Asians, to Mexicans (but not Mestizos), to young girls and women, and anyone of a different religion. Okay. But no one needed a group or a staff development or training of any kind to be tolerant. If someone said something untoward, then apologies if felt needed could be done in person. But artificial tolerance, an ethic forced on everybody suddenly becomes a thing to toy with instead of a principle to apply once you know a detail about someone's history. And that is another thing that forced tolerance encourages--envy for another person's history, and ultimately contempt for it. It's one reason why blackmail and trash-talking are so prevalent at tax-funded schools.
From an early date, your child is taught to be tolerant. But that tolerance means that your child is asked to surrender his values or the values that you taught him. Where then does that leave your influence compared to the education provided by the tax-funded schools?
First, let's start with secondary education--high school and middle school. High schools have lots of clubs. Clubs are extracurricular but their presence is forceful. We hear about them on the PA system. We read about them in the bulletin. We see signs of their meetings across campus. The competition for your kid's attention is fierce. There are lots of choices. You don't want your kid making the wrong choice. One club that pervades many schools is the LGBT, Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender Club. The club's membership is not exclusive to gay or transgender kids or educators, but instead is a club designed to advocate for and enlighten others. Without sounding too callous, who cares? LGBT Club, like all organizations based on a group identity, is trying to introduce a new ethics for people to observe. The number one ethic to observe should be the non-aggression principle, what Libertarians refer to as NAP. But this is not enough for clubs with group identities. No. No, you must reshape your thinking and revise your values to conform to their purported ethic that is higher than the Bible's golden rule or the NAP. What you'll find in this club are very bright kids, not because they're gay but because they've probably endured a lot of harassment and have had to deal with it and negotiate it so that they don't lose too much in friendship or social standing. Most kids involved in LGBT do not use the ethics of its charter to bully others into being nice strictly because they sexually oriented differently. What is horrible about this club is that it establishes sexual orientation as a social sophistication. It is not. For many people it is embarrassing. Perhaps it has brought social shame. Perhaps some people have endured abuse in that context.
This video clip is in line with the theme of this page on "Captured," illustrating how the public school's overt aim is to strip man of his individuality and squash any individual talents. It's quite an indictment, one that many adults loathe, for it would indict not just the adult teachers who supervise over such destruction of the soul but also the parents who want their kids to succeed according to the criteria set by government. The full film is here. One point made by a British-speaking woman with long gray hair was that the west is creating a monoculture in education, and thereby is wiping out the values of indigenous people. I'd say that's true. Even with multiculturalism, there is only really one culture--a leftist, Marxist culture. What has happened to the German communities in the US or in California? And by "communities" I don't mean groups officially sanctioned by the local government. What I mean are volunteer families. These are families who donated their time and energy and talents to celebrate individuals in the neighborhood. There used to be vibrant and active European communities until all they were all considered racist by the new, incoming group. Here is an example of one, families of Swiss origin.
This video provides a pretty good visual about the beginnings of Swiss Park and about what kind of community Duarte was back in the 1950s. The only surviving Swiss Park in Southern California is in Whittier, where the Swiss Society moved to after the City of Duarte condemned the Swiss Park there in 1984. Here someone is selling a postcard of Swiss Park in Duarte for $8. The City of Duarte, as opposed to the city of Duarte, condemned Swiss Park after a wind storm that brought down a lot of trees. The City of Duarte used it as an excuse to condemn the park on behalf of the real estate developers who built the townhome complex on what is now known as Swiss Trail.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
How about this as one of the values of a tax-funded, public school in DC. This piano prodigy was missing too many days from school. So the school punished this world-class performer. "When Avery returned in March from winning the Grand Prix at a big competition in Hartford, Conn., for her performance of a Chopin Waltz, she didn't get calls of congratulations from her school. That was her 10th absence, so a truancy officer was called."
Monday, June 3, 2013
SCHOOLS ARE PRISONS
Gone are the idyllic days of elementary school playgrounds, backstops, hop-scotch, tether-ball, four-square, basketball hoops, swings, and ever-so cutely decorated rooms with pictures of Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. What military generals are doing in a room where kids learn reading, writing, and speaking I can't quite comment on here. Christmas pageants, field trips, the wonderful smell of Ms. Holderbaum, crayons and cursive writing are all wonderful memories. The schools were gate-less. The locals used the grounds on the weekend to play football, baseball, basketball or hit a few pitch shots before Sunday-morning tee time.
Today, we have lots of fences. And unlike those established by the neighbors in Robert Frost's poem "Mending Wall," these are imposed by an indifferent third-party without regard for those whom it affects.
I saw a little of this transformation. Tall, durable fences made with wrought-iron bars built on the perimeter of an inner-city with the tops bent outward to keep squirrelly teenagers out. Yeah, like that's going to happen. But that's what we were told. Always acted on and believed in what we were told. More like a plan by the city to generate revenue against those who disobey an ordinance that says they can't cross, or to write up citations against students showing up late to school who were likewise locked out. Like I said, a way to generate income.
Then why not more bars? Bars. Bars. Bars. Bars were built on outdoor stairwells between floors. "Why was the school covering up this area with bars?" I asked. Was there a fire sale made exclusive to the district operations on wrought iron? An answer came, "Because the kids are throwing trash down there." One project after the other, one do-good project after another, and before we articulated the trend to ourselves we saw those idyllic elementary settings go from being open and free to a state penitentiary used to house violent criminals. The effect is not lost on anybody with a memory of how things were. Caged. Caged. Caged. Malcolm X was correct. People act funny once they're caged. I can imagine. The impulse to escape is ever greater. "Escape into books" claim the educators. Get lost in The Outsiders if you want out. Get lost in chemistry. Lose yourself in American history. Whatever you do, just get lost.
Monday, October 29, 2012
PUBLIC-SCHOOLS: SOCIAL INTEGRATION OR PSYCHOLOGICAL ALIENATION?
One of the most damning statements that I have ever read regarding tax-funded education. I was lucky to find it at Bionic Mosquito. "According to William Harris, US Commissioner of Education from 1889 to 1906, the tool to build such a society [amicable folk waiting around for someone to tell them what to do] was psychological alienation. Alienate children from themselves so they could no longer turn inward for strength, alienation from families, traditions, religions, cultures – so no outside source of advise could contradict the will of the political state."
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
The unfortunate effects of a public education. Many will argue of the social benefits of a public education, that a kid becomes socialized better as a result. I disagree, because I think that kids learn to think like everyone else and that the history of ideas, their origins, and trigger events in history are easily overshadowed by the ideas or the values of those running the school, which can often be unruly and bullying kids and adults.
PUBLIC SCHOOL BUREAUCRACY
No single teacher is capable of changing a public-school bureaucracy. Bureaucracies were established to squash change. A lot of newcomers arrive in a bureaucracy and think that the hierarchy is tightly run by clearly identified individuals with authority granted by the state or by years of dedicated service to the public. Public--ooh, sounds authoritative. Sounds bureaucratic. Sounds like a mob. There is no public. There are public officials, but they don't officiate or supervise over any significant number of individuals beyond those hired by the city or state. That's who the "public" is. It's the government. But instead of using government, government uses the pseudonym of public to put the patina of commonwealth on their enterprise.
SCHOOL SECURITY: WHO PAYS FOR IT?
Here is a story that only makes my eyes roll. The headline reads "LAUSD to Hire 440 Security Aides for Its Elementary Schools." My first question is where is the money coming from? Second, the schools are already like prisons, what will the addition of 440 more aides do? The schools used to hire local parents to come and patrol the halls. They spoke the language. They knew how to command the kids. It was pretty effective. How much do you think these aides will get paid? Do you think that they'll be carrying expensive walkie-talkies and be granted keys and special access? A bloated bureaucracy! What a cliche! True. But a true cliche. A bloated bureaucracy! And the parents feel helpless. Oh, the bureaucracy always informs parents of education code, of the dress code, the law, high expectations, and their commitment to transparency. Always transparent. So transparent that they go right over the parents. Or so transparent that we can see right through the rhetoric of school administrations. But the parents did surrender their legal control over their children and then wake up one day to pretend surprise.
Monday, October 15, 2012
Palmdale Teenager Assaulted by School Security
Funny how reporter, Michael Brownlee, prefaces his remarks with a "Now keep in mind, this is the family's story; their account of what they see happened here on campus earlier this month. Unfortunately, we weren't able to reach the school district for comment but keep in mind a my mother and daughter baffled over how a celebration with cake ended with a scuffle with school security." With prefatory comments like this, FOX News appears to be taking the side of law enforcement. But that intention is a little ambiguous. By announcing up front that this is family's side of the story and following that up with the family's side of the story with images of school police pinning a student to a cafeteria table conflicts. The image is typical cop brutality and abuse; it's what we see all the time on the news. Viewers are just glad that it's not them. So they're relieved. While they listen to the testimony, they hear the doubt of speaking against authority. It is scary for kids and for moms. It gently puts the patina of suspicion on the family. But if anyone is at all familiar with the schools nowadays and knows how they treat adults, you should know too that any bureaucracy will always . . . always protect itself.
DATA COLLECTION ON KIDS; NO PARENT CONSENT
Three schools in Florida hired private firms to come onto their campuses and installed retina-scanners. As the writer, Gary North, points out, they are the equivalent to fingerprinting. But this is exactly what public schools are for--to stamp, check, and record so as to keep records of the 50 million children across the country on the plantation all without parent authorization. Remember, as soon as your children step out the door to climb on that yellow bus or walk or you drive them to school, for the hours that they are at school they are the property of the state.
Saturday, May 11, 2013
ATTENDANCE: IT PENALIZES YOU & YOUR PARENTS
Seattle school district is hiring taxis and town cars to chauffeur homeless kids to school. That's right, to meet daily attendance and squeeze money from the tax-payer. It is amazing what a racket the government's public school system is. So criminal, so corrupt beyond any molecule of decency. Having said that about the system, there are some good people working in the schools. Not good because they are hard-working. Not good because they are smart. Not good because they are effective. No. They are good because they are steady moral men in the face of excruciatingly painful criminality.
ECONOMICS OF TAX-FUNDED SCHOOLS
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
At some point, home-owners will say no to taxes. Just recently the city of South Pasadena passed a resolution to increase an annual parcel tax. A parcel tax is a type of property tax. Whereas a property tax assesses a percentage of the value of your property, a parcel tax uses different criteria. These criteria are established by school districts. Didn't know that. Didn't know that school districts have power to force property owners into a vote that finances school business and budgets. Very interesting. Don't know that this is particular to California. It may be. The criteria for taxing range from a kind of flat parcel tax (how is that amount calculated?) to assessments based on the square footage of a parcel of land or based on the building's square footage. According to Ballotpedia, some school districts charge only residential owners while others charge only non-residential owners. Either way this is a strain both on business and on residents.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
LOCK-DOWNS: FEDERALLY-FUNDED EXERCISES IN TOTALITARIANISM
Public schools are under lock-down, intellectual lock-down. The schools I've taught at had three to four lock-downs a year. But nothing compares to the emotional and intellectual lock-down of an administration that cites and suspends a second-grade teacher for showing his kids tools. Oh, yeah, that's the message--tools are dangerous. But schools will give condoms. Tools, no. Condems, yes. Read this here, and be sure to read the link tagged as "Condems, yes." How parents can condone financing an indoctrination program through their taxes is beyond me.
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
SCHOOLS OR DRUG-DISTRIBUTION CENTERS
Here is one topic near and dear to my heart.
WHO OWNS YOUR CHILD: YOU OR THE STATE?
Regarding tax-funded, public schools, please know what you're entering into when you hand your child over to the schools during your day. Melinda Harmon, a US Federal Judge, explains what happens when you drop them off at school or let them step on the yellow bus. Harmon explains that "Parents give up their rights when they drop the children off at public school." For more, read Jeff Berwick's article here.
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Here is a horrible example out of the Bronx of school personnel treating some woman's kid like a criminal. He's 7 years old!! He was taken by police and handcuffed because someone accused him of stealing a whopping five dollars. This is what happens when well-intentioned individuals all under the influence of a state bureaucracy want to make their thankless efforts mean something. The kids have little respect for their authority. These adults aren't going to let a little kid belittle them. The adult's options are limited by the state and the law. These adults realize this, so they begin using state punishment to extract authority from our more vulnerable members who have fewer rights than adults. And as US Federal Judge, Melinda Harmon, says above "Parents give up their rights when they drop the children off at public school."
Thursday, February 14, 2013
"Boy Brings Folding Shovel. School Goes on Lock-down"
Schools used to have neighborhood volunteers monitor the halls for roaming kids. Today, they're high-paid resource officers. I do not think that uniformed officers, fresh off a two-tour term in Iraq or Afghanistan, are qualified to patrol the neighborhood schools. These veterans who have served during the War on Terror are bringing their ideas and their high-alert tactical training to school grounds. Kids love military guys. Many of us appreciate military servicemen and women. And though most are highly-functioning, bright, and sensible individuals, some get to define what is acceptable actions by children. One AP I spoke to years ago explained to me that schools were, in fact, dangers, that several kids throughout the day come to campus with weapons from knives to guns and brass knuckles and other manual weaponry. Is this a statement about kids or about the schools, where kids endure bullying and fear for their lives. I've witnessed it myself. I've stood in a stairwell between two small gangs throwing threats at each other. Most of it is posturing rhetoric. But just in case, a kid might think, hey, I'll bring something to defend myself. That's because the schools cannot defend kids. The best they can do is keep them inside the classroom. Briefly, one other incident I witnessed was a kid who asked at the end of class if she could hang out in my room a little bit. I heard fear in her voice. There were two girls just down the hall whom she claimed wanted to jump her. APs, principals, deans, counselors, coorinators don't have time to mediate personal situations like this.
So although there are problems on school campuses, a kid bringing a folding shovel to school to be used as a prop in a school play does not warrant a campus lock-down. Whoever called for a lock-down overreacted. And this overreaction seems to become more and more legitimized as a way to think. It's unfortunate.
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Great talk on Common Core. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation spent $2.5 billion dollars on Commom Core. Only on population control and abortion in Africa did Gates spend more money.
Kennedy wrote No Child Left Behind
With Common Core, states are reduced to being little more than administrative agents for a national curriculum. Race to the Top, Obama's education policy, was what launched Common Core. It's awful.
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Other parents speak out:
Friday, May 9, 2014
Father protests sexually explicit material the schools distributed to his daughter. And gets arrested.
Marina Baer, the daughter of William Baer who was arrested for expressing a conflicting opinion to the Gilford, New Hampshire school board, replies to the school board. http://benswann.com/baers-daughter-addresses-school.../
UPDATE: December 22, 2104
The legal system is completely and thoroughly disgusting. This father, William Baer, was arrested for "Disorderly Conduct" and only now after 7 months and a full hearing in the Circuit Courts were the charges dropped. You can read about how it was resolved here.
UPDATE: January 5, 2014
UPDATE: January 5, 2014
The Case for Charter Schools
Gary North - April 25, 2014
I am a proponent of charter schools, but I don't think those people who run the charter schools will be favorable to my support.
Charter schools have a very important function: they create resentment against the local school system in the minds of parents who want better education for their children. Until the development of charter schools, parents could be brushed off with some version of the rhetoric of democratic education. After all, the school authorities would tell parents, "we don't want to have our children in segregated institutions. We don't want class differences, meaning educational differences, meaning social and intellectual differences, intruding into the midst of the tax-supported public school system. That would be undemocratic."
That argument kept tens of millions of parents from pulling their kids out of the public schools from the end of World War II until the advent of charter schools. Prior to World War II, students dropped out. The ones who got bored, quit. The ones who could not compete intellectually, quit. The idea that everybody should stay in school to at least age 16, and preferably age 18, is a product of the post-World War II educational guild.
Part of this had to do with the G.I. Bill of Rights. That magnificently named piece of welfare state legislation gave money to returning GI's so that they could go to college. For the first time, it appeared that it was possible for the average guy to go to college. That meant that the GI's wanted their kids to go to college. Such a goal would have been unthinkable for the vast majority of Americans in 1940. Only 5% of the population were college grads. After 1946, it became an almost universal desire. Everybody wanted his kid to be able to go to college and get a college degree.
Today, about two-thirds of all high school graduates go to college. Of these, about half do not graduate. But you can see what is happening. There is this tremendous lust among parents to get their children certified by the academic system, because they have believed that this certification would give their children a tremendous economic advantage. That was the belief in 1946, and it is the belief today.
Once this idea took root in the voting population, any suggestion that some children are simply too dumb, too undisciplined, or too brilliant to survive in the bureaucratic system known as high school education, has not been acceptable. Parents do not want to think about it. They want their kids to have a shot at college. So, they do not want their children locked out of a college preparation track, at least if they themselves had some college education.
At this point, the only way to give a minority of children the education they needed to get into college was to separate the tracks inside high schools. There was a track for the vocational arts students. There was a track for the college preparatory students. But, as more and more students wanted to go to college, it became obvious that there would have to be segregation within the college-track group. Back in 1957, my high school adopted an honors system. This was for the brighter students. Out of something like 500 students in my graduation year, about 60 of us were able to get into the honors program. These were more rigorous classes. You risked getting a lower grade, but you knew you were going to get a better education. Those students who wanted a better education did their best to get into these classes. There was only one class per course per grade. The transcripts did not identify honors classes. But if you could get in, you applied.
Most parents did not know of the existence of this honors track system. It was implemented without a lot of fanfare. As I recall, my grade was the first grade that was offered an honors program. I took advantage of it. There was no question that this segregation process was an advantage academically to me, and I think it was an advantage to most of the students who got into the program.
Today, the courses are called AP courses, or advanced placement courses. These will get you college credit if you can pass an exam with a 4 or a 5. The excellent HBO movie, Stand and Deliver, is about one of these programs in an Hispanic neighborhood high school in Los Angeles. It really is true. In fact, they low-balled it. It looked as though there was only one teacher who had promoted this. In fact, multiple departments promoted it. The students became extraordinary performers. It was one of the best-performing schools in the state of California, and possibly in the United States. But, the law of large numbers has reasserted itself. It has regressed to the mean. The mean is low performance.
The way to keep the schools from regressing to the mean is to get bright kids out of the schools. Charter schools do this. Charter schools have the right to refuse acceptance of applications. They also have the right to kick students out. This negative sanction is crucial. This is demonstrated in the movie, Stand by Me. If the principal had not had the right to kick out the hooligans, he never could have restored the school.
The charter schools are bureaucratic. They are funded by taxpayer money. They are no real solution to the problem. But they do create great desire among the parents of bright students to get their children into these programs, and they create some really serious doubts in the minds of the parents whose children cannot get into these schools. These schools stand as a testimony against the third-rate education that is going on in most of the classes in the standard schools. The hooligans are enrolled. Parents who don't want their children to go to school with hooligans resent the fact that some parents are able to get their kids out of the system.
Long-term, this resentment against the non-charter schools will tend to erode support by parents. Most parents know that their kids are stuck in these schools. The parents know that these are second-rate schools, at best. They know that their kids are being shortchanged. This is a positive development. In the long run, it is going to favor homeschooling. Parents who see that they cannot get their kids into a charter school will finally figure out that they can pull their children out of Hooligan High, and get their children a much better education.
The charter schools are an institutional admission of failure on the part of the school districts. There are now visible institutions that are providing better education, safer education, and elitist education. This undermines the rhetoric of democratic education that the promoters of progressive education have used since the 1920's, and which they have implemented since 1946.
The charter schools are not a solution for public education. But they do serve as motivational tools to persuade a growing minority of parents to pull their children out of the standard public schools, and get them into a program of home-schooling. Charter schools undermine the rhetoric of democracy. Charter schools rest on an implicit assumption: "Democratic schools are second rate." This is a correct assumption.
HOME-SCHOOLING: IT'S BETTER
This is an interesting interview by Lew Rockwell of Josh Taylor on home-schooling. Very interesting interview. I would not miss it if you want to know what your options are for your children.
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
"Public school did nothing to help with life or social skills. It did drill to follow orders, and all students sensed the constant insecurity and fear of a authority. This fear--of authority, even parents--could be the biggest inhibitor toward real lasting education." --Heather Callaghan
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
Great article on the benefits of homeschooling and the myths used to try to scare parents and teachers of the importance of group learning.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Homeschooling is on the rise. In North Carolina, their numbers have surpassed the number of students attending private school.