A complete history of education and what is happening in our schools TODAY!
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Transcripts from these speakers in the videos below. This also includes reports from several education experts not in attendance.
Bettina Dobbs: As a teacher I had opposed social promotion, “new” grouping methods, the “whole word” reading method, marking on a curve, intrusive surveys, “modern” math, faulty new textbooks and sex education. Each proposed change had seemed a singular excrescence. I never dreamed each was part of the plan to remove God from our lives, to weaken families, to dumb down and stupefy American citizens and foreign students in our colleges and universities through our once vaunted system of education, but here was the evidence! There was so much to reassess and learn: humanism — new meanings of old terms — standard stonewalling by school superintendents — deliberate denigration of questioning parents — the “new” basics — elimination of wholesome academic competition — emphasis on more sex education, etc., ad infinitum.
— Bettina Dobbs, R.N., M.S. (Education) served as President for Guardians of Education for Maine (1978-2004) and has been a speaker on radio and TV, at Home School and Christian School graduations and at legislative hearings. Bettina has, over the past 35 years, provided her extensive expertise on complicated education/health issues to Americans,including elected officials. She recently celebrated her 93rd birthday.
Patrick Huff, School Administrator speaking on what he experienced: Every year they were on the brink of not making AYP. Some of my colleagues were in schools that had fallen into an unacceptable rating. They were consumed with workshops, strategies for low performers, benchmark tests, tutoring, and some already working with the Texas Education Agency (TEA) on their plan for improvement. It was a never-ending fight to try and make the grade. The system was beginning to consume everything we felt was important and making us concentrate only on that which was graded by the state — the test. Schools that had a rich tradition in many curriculum areas, like art, music, dance, but struggled with the test, were now seen as below average or even failing. Well, at my [teacher] son’s school, they have had their five years of not making AYP and are in takeover position from the TEA. The process is now with the middle school. Before that, IDEA (an Education Management Organization) took over the elementary school in the neighborhood. When the students that are in the middle school enter the high school, IDEA will restructure the high school and it will become a charter school just like the middle school and the elementary below. Our son will have to resign, as will everyone else in the high school, and wait to be rehired or not by the EMO. The students will be put on a waiting list to see if they attend the new charter school. Those who don’t get selected to attend the charter school will be partitioned off to other high schools in Austin. The EMO has a reputation for hiring Teach for America teachers in their new charter schools. This means that the likelihood of a former teacher being rehired at the charter school is slim. There will also not be a need for a school library. All the students will have laptops. The use of technology as the primary teacher fits comfortably in charter schools. The teacher becomes a facilitator and monitors the students as they work through the curriculum that is given to the student on the computer. This way not as many teachers are needed to work with the students.
—- Patrick Huff graduated with a B.S in Education from Texas Christian University, a Master’s in Education from Sam Houston University, and has received his PhD in Educational Leadership. Serving in public schools from 1973-2007. He has worked as a teacher and administrator in three different public school districts in Texas and had completed 30 years as a public school administrator, including 11 years as a middle school and high school principal.
Donna is a long-time teacher and counselor in the state of Rhode Island. We saw the “Teach for America” bus pull up. These teachers receive five weeks of training in the summer and are placed into the classrooms. Some of them have no content knowledge in their class’ field. This is the end of “highly qualified.” They wore red shirts. They are the “model” teachers. Experienced teachers are told to watch what they do. Evaluations are to take place four times a year. The administration is reporting that it is taking them nine hours to do one evaluation. They can do little else, and discipline is out the window. They now are academic leaders, policing us. They are not happy, either, and I assume this job will be replaced by an outside agency at some point. The union is also now in the business of running schools and training employees in evaluations. They are also reviewing evaluations. This summer thirteen schools are slated to be cited and managed by the union. This was modeled in Florida, Jeb Bush’s model plan. The district has adapted as “best policy” the workshop model: fifteen minutes of mini lessons, fifteen minutes of activity, and fifteen minutes of group discussion of activity. Anyone who is “chalking and talking” (traditional teaching) is told they will not pass the evaluation. Teachers whose desks in their classrooms are in rows are told to move them. The standards must be up on the walls at all times, and twenty- first century language must be used in the classroom. There is always someone who is observing them; they are completely demoralized and being called “ineffective.” I can assure you that, being a systems psychologist, it is no accident that the TV and the schools are using the fifteen-minute rule. This is part of programming. If you are fired from your position at any time, you cannot collect your pension until you are age 67. That, of course, has been cut substantially due to the economic crisis. The new teachers are not concerned because this is what they have been trained in, and this is all they know. They need to get the non-compliant older teachers out.