by Karen Schroeder of Advocates for Academic Freedom.
Leaders of educational policy have found that local control of schools hinders their ability to convince students that America’s success and well-being is interdependent with other nations. Before interdependence can gain acceptance, American citizens must abandon their present life style.
The Aspen Institute prepared a succinct document called A New Civic Literacy; American Education and Global Interdependence which shows that educational and political leaders believed that local control of education had been slowing public acceptance of interdependence. Never-the-less, Dr. Ward Morehouse, who developed educational programs for world citizenship for the New York State Department of Education, explained that interdependence may impose burdens that must be widely shared. “We the people are ready to make major adjustments in our life styles and work-ways if (a) someone with credibility tells us that it is in the public interest and (b) the distribution of the burden is obviously fair.”
Does this position sound familiar?
Dr. Morehouse assumes that interdependence is a goal of the American people and that its implementation simply needs the guidance of a leader with credibility. He warns that the American educational system is “caught in a bind” created by state and local control of schools. He joins a myriad of educational theorists who explain that only the federal government can handle the major issues involving energy, food, population, global environment, oceans, communications, trade, investment, and money.
Believing the federal government should control money and salaries, the American public allowed political leaders to create the Federal Reserve and pass the 16th and 17th Amendments to the Constitution. Simultaneously, educational and political leadership assumed that Americans had been well prepared to accept interdependence and all of the educational and political implications involved.
Therefore, increasing federal funding and creating policies which place the federal government in greater control of educational policy have been essential steps toward assuring the success of this agenda. Justification is based on the premise that interdependence issues are “perceived as national concerns”.
The American public has been conditioned to believe that perceptions must be respected as truth. This manipulation of language discourages discussion of interdependence, a relationship in which the individual owns and controls nothing because everything he accomplishes depends upon the generosity and talents of collective world nations. He must surrender private property and freedom. Our founding fathers would be appalled that our citizenry would surrender so much.
Those imposing social or political agendas upon the classroom are not held accountable for the impact their policies have on the academic success of students. One example is Cooperative grouping of children. That is a method of instruction which encourages children to surrender their individual dreams and academic goals for the collective. College professors continue to recommend cooperative grouping of students as an essential method of instruction although academic achievement suffers in the process. The First Days of School by Harry and Rosemary Wong and Handbook of Social Justice in Education by William Ayers and others are examples of works which advocate cooperative grouping as a technique for new teachers. Both books are also required reading during professional seminars.
Most important to these educational experts are the social and political changes being developed in American society. Many Americans have been conditioned to accept a President who says:
If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on
your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart.
If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help.
When the American public cheers a President who advocates these collectivistic values, the policy wonks at the Aspen Institute have good reason to smile for they have successfully changed American values, standards, and expectations. This they accomplished without spilling a drop of blood or taking a life.
They destroyed the dreams of many Americans, and they used the educational system to do it. Taxpayers who want to stop the destruction of America’s Republic must demand that federal mandates be removed from the educational system and the funds be re-allocated to the states.
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