,hl=en,siteUrl='http://0ldfox.blogspot.com/',authuser=0,security_token="v_SeT2Tv8vVdKRCcG9CCW-ZdIfQ:1429878696275"/> Old Fox KM Journal : The Failure of Modern Public Education

Friday, April 01, 2016

The Failure of Modern Public Education


John Taylor Gatto
He came to the conclusion that the government education system is broken, unfixable, and he was quitting.  He then wrote the book, The Underground History of American Education, a classic on the tragedy happening in American education.  He documents the takeover by socialist, centralized-government people who were not interested in honest education, but in mind-control.  (On that subject, see also two books by Samuel Blumenfeld, Is Public Education Necessary?   and   NEA: Trojan Horse in American Education


Our form of compulsory schooling is an invention of the State of Massachusetts around 1850. It was resisted - sometimes with guns - by an estimated eighty percent of the Massachusetts population, the last outpost in Barnstable on Cape Cod not surrendering its children until the 1880s, when the area was seized by militia and children marched to school under guard.

Now here is a curious idea to ponder. Senator Ted Kennedy's office released a paper not too long ago that prior to compulsory education the state literacy rate was ninety-eight percent, and after it the figure never exceeded ninety-one percent, where it stands in 1990.

Here is another curiosity to think about. The home-schooling movement has quietly grown to a size where one and half million young people are being educated entirely by their own parents; last month the education press reported the amazing news that children schooled at home seem to be five or even ten years ahead of their formally trained peers in their ability to think.
Two institutions at present control our children's lives: television and schooling, in that order. Both of these reduce the real world of wisdom, fortitude, temperance, and justice to a never-ending, nonstop abstraction. In centuries past, the time of childhood and adolescence would have been occupied in real work, real charity, real adventures, and the realistic search for mentors who might teach what you really wanted to learn. A great deal of time was spent in community pursuits, practicing affection, meeting and studying every level of the community, learning how to make a home, and dozens of other tasks necessary to becoming a whole man or woman.

But here is the calculus of time the children I teach must deal with:
  • Out of the 168 hours in each week my children sleep 56. That leaves them 112 hours a week out of which to fashion a self. 
  • According to recent reports children watch 55 hours of television a week. That then leaves them 57 hours a week in which to grow up.
  • My children attend school 30 hours a week, use about 8 hours getting ready for and traveling to and from school, and spend an average of 7 hours a week in homework - a total of 45 hours.  
  • During that time they are under constant surveillance. They have no private time or private space and are disciplined if they try to assert individuality in the use of time or space. 
  • That leaves them 12 hours a week out of which to create a unique consciousness. Of course my kids eat, too, and that takes some time - not much because they've lost the tradition of family dining - but if we allot 3 hours a week to evening meals we arrive at a net amount of private time for each child of 9 hours per week.
It's not enough, is it? The richer the kid, of course, the less television he or she watches, but the rich kid's time is just as narrowly prescribed by a somewhat broader catalogue of commercial entertainments and the inevitable assignment to a series of private lessons in areas seldom of his or her own choice.

But these activities are just a more cosmetic way to create dependent human beings, unable to fill their own hours, unable to initiate lines of meaning to give substance and pleasure to their existence. It's a national disease, this dependency and aimlessness, and I think schooling and television and lessons have a lot to do with it.

Get The Book!

Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
For Gatto's superb The Underground History of American Education, call The Odysseus Group, in NYC, 212 529-9397.
Suggested Reading List - the Demise of the Educational System - OBE (Outcome-Based Education), NEA (National Education Association), educational psychology, German psychology & influences, demise of public education, educational sabotage, Wundt, Pavlov, Dewey, Skinner, Watson.

Walking Targets

eBook (PDF), 301 Pages 
     This item has not been rated yet
Price: $7.95
America gave up the three R's and got back the three I's: ignorance, illiteracy, and illegitimacy.
Parents of the postwar years wanted a “kinder and gentler nation.” Americans were vulnerable to the arguments of behavioral psychologists. These came at them through articles and books touting appealing but unworkable philosophies of child management that denounced adult guidance and leadership. These messages were later repeated through colleges of education in the form of courses in "educational psychology.''
Today’s schools promote success without achievement, ethics without religion, and character without morals. Clinical-sounding labels such as “emotionally handicapped” may make failure more palatable. They certainly make it more permanent.

"As you may be aware, data-mining is presented to the public as strictly for security purposes.  Not exactly:  These screening instruments, which I first exposed as “psychographics,” are calculated to predict attitudes through invasive surveys and questionnaires masquerading as “tests” and, if possible, to modify opinions early on via left-wing school curriculum, “enrichment” activities and textbooks.
"In 2003, the Education Department, among others, continued to deny that it was collecting, sharing and storing psychological (“politically sensitive”) data on schoolchildren and families.  Today, federal agencies actually brag about their data-collection activities — the same psychological evaluations and lesson plans I described in my 1998 book. With new legislation recently passed, there is nothing now to stop these assessments of political correctness, under the cover of "mental health," from landing on the desktops of company executives, law enforcement agencies or university admissions officers. This gives new meaning to the term "career screening," and it can prevent your child, whatever his or her grades, from aspiring to a position of leadership or influence."

"For the past decade students have had to plow through not only quasi-tests called "assessments," featuring all sorts of questions about their parents and home life, but a multitude of intimate and personal surveys, nearly all of them computerized, as part of their class work. Where do you think newspapers get statistics like "12% of students say they have had intercourse by age 15," or smoked a joint in the last 6 months, or dislike their parents?
"But, of course, these responses are anonymous, you say.
"Dream on. Surreptitious "slugging," "bar-coding," "sticky-labeling," and "embedding identifiers": All these techniques, and more, are described at length in the testing contracts and literature, should anyone bother to read them.

"Children have always been the consummate sources of data, notoriously undiscerning about the kinds of information they disclose. Like all computerized facts and figures, youngsters' responses can be cross-matched with everything from medical and health insurance records to credit card transactions. But no legislation or guidelines have emerged from our hallowed regulative bodies to sufficiently put the brakes on the tremendous upswing of such activity over the past two decades. The 80s and 90s were spent largely in denial. If anything, our leaders made it worse by swallowing malarkey about the supposed benefits of mental health profiling, personality inventories and behavioral screening - to identify potential troublemakers and ensure public safety. Society's reward? More Columbine-like atrocities - and a near-perfect political weapon, now neatly in place."
Protect yourself and use secure communications with Pink Pagoda service.

No comments: