Sunday, June 10, 2007

Who Controls Our Children?

The video (vcr) quality of this film is poor, but the audio is excellent. I listened to it as I made lunch.

While I was looking for a film project by John Taylor Gatto and The Odysseus Group, called "The Fourth Purpose" - I discovered the film on Google Video, which begins a thread Mr. Gatto has been pursuing. Both projects are of the same time frame, early 1990's. I have been unable to find Mr. Gatto's film - don't know if the film has been completed or not.

The story of this film began almost twenty years ago, when a Pennsylvania boy came home from public school one day, and said: "Mom, something weird is going on with this test they made us take in school today". Being a concerned mom, she went to the school and asked to see the test. The school refused, saying it was against public policy, that the test and it's results were between the school and the students. She persisted, and again was told she couldn't see the test or know its contents. Now she was pissed, and went into action at the state level, and finally obtained a copy of the test given by the EQA Program, the Educational Quality and Accountability Program. Her individual initiative and actions as a concerned parent started the investigation, which resulted in this film from 1992 by Peg Luksik and the PA Parents Commission; it has further peeled back the federal agenda of "collectivism" endemic throughout our national school system.

In almost all the states that have implemented school accountability to date, the overriding concern is the achievement of students. In contrast to policies of earlier periods, the chief focus of accountability is results, not effort. Most of the enabling legislation explicitly states that the purpose of adopting school accountability systems is to reflect student achievement outcomes and school performance.

"While parents, schools, provinces and states across North America bicker about the democratic process of running public schools, forces are all manipulating education from behind the scenes. Major international players are reshaping public education to suit their own self-serving agendas, without regard for the wants of parents and the welfare of their children. This video lecture documents how today's educational system dumb down kids deliberately, making zombie-like people who don't ask any questions but just follow orders."

If I were a really disciplined researcher, I would wait until I knew the more recent chronology of this tale of "Public Education Dumbing Down Kids Deliberately". But as I don't have the resources to research this properly, I will pass along to you what I find, as I find it. Stay tuned.

If your child started public school in 1992, the kid is likely a sophomore or junior in college now. You might want to take the time to watch this one-hour film, just to see what they have been exposed to. They have been taught by "outcome-based education guidelines", which are measured by "exit outcomes". The purpose of this is to make all the children the same - it's stated method and goal is to eliminate individual differences. And here's the kicker: the goals were written, not by the US Dept of Education, but by the US Labor Dept. Oh, and parents are not privy to this information. If local schools do not meet the criteria, the state will take over. It explains a lot.

As I was writing this, I hopped over to the Massachusetts Office of Educational Quality and Accountability (EQA), where I was invited to peruse their site for information on 2006-2007 standards, accountability, etc. Don't even bother. It is a bunch of gobbledy-gook, blah, blah, saying nothing about the actual contents of the test. Obfuscation. So, nothing changes. Didn't think it would have. Gotta check, though.

When the PA Parents Commission got involved and began looking into the EQA, they were aghast. They asked the question, "How come all the goals in all the states are the same?" - since the goals are supposedly being generated at the state level. They looked at the New American Schools Development Corporation (1991), which has morphed a few times, and is currently known as the REL Midwest. All were funded by federal grant money. Again, don't look for answers here, either. The website's job is to float high-sounding crap, which will only leave you frustrated.

They didn't get any answers. No, what they got were lies, denials - even though the state of Pennsylvania left a paper trail a mile wide. See, they have to document this stuff. Then turn around and deny it is being used. It is being used. And Ms. Luksik has the proof. Here's further proof.

On the NCLB Implementation Center, they did make one recommendation:

In testimony before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Education Reform this week, Learning Point Associates Senior Advisor Paul Kimmelman cautioned against making sweeping changes to the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act. "Rather than make major changes to the law, be patient and make small changes based on logical, evidence-based recommendations," Dr. Kimmelman told the panel led by U.S. Representative Judy Biggert.
Yeah, don't make any sweeping changes.

I'd like to propose one sweeping change:

Ok, I'm getting giddy.
Time to stop.

Check out the film. Check out Mr.Gatto. Check out your kids from public school, and don't send them back.

Homeschool them.

Teach them what you know - Educate them anyway you see fit.

Under your watchful eye - let 'em loose in the museums - run in the field of dreams -
let 'em fish - play - hunt - write - make movies - create -volunteer - help others, - make art - make friends - make war - make up - sew - cook - loaf around - cry - play - build - make music - solve problems -invent themselves over and over.

Believe in them, and they will astound you.

But for heaven's sake, keep them out of the clutches of institutional schooling, where they are regarded as "human resource material", or "human capital"
- never as individuals.

It's Collectivism, pure and simple.

Freedom Folks
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