Blast from the past, Isyerbit on our schools

It always baffles me when people imagine that stuff like this is somehow a departure from the norm:

Seriously now, how hard is to write questions for third-graders that don’t (a) address creepy topics like cannibalism, (b) ask how many slaves it would take to pick an orchard clean, or (c) intrude on their and their family’s privacy by asking them to write about a secret they had trouble keeping? The answer obviously is (d) very.

Choices a and b were the stuff of math homework assignments earlier this year in schools in D.C. and Georgia, respectively, while c appeared on a statewide standardized test in New Jersey just this week. The test, given to 4,000 students, was a dry run for the Garden State’s Assessment of Skills and Knowledge.

It’s not an accident.  The tests are designed to give the test-makers private information about their students, much like most of the free apps on your cell phone.  And Facebook.

” The brainwashing for acceptance of the “system’s” control would take place in the school—through indoctrination and the use of behavior modification, which comes under so many labels: the most recent labels being Outcome-Based Education, Skinnerian Mastery Learning or Direct Instruction.  In the 1970s this writer and many others waged the war against values clarification, which was later renamed “critical thinking,” which regardless of the label—and there are bound to be many more labels on the horizon—is nothing but pure, unadulterated destruction of absolute values of right and wrong upon which stable and free societies depend and upon which our nation was founded.

In 1973 I started the long journey into becoming a “resister,” placing the first incriminating piece of paper in my “education” files. That first piece of paper was a purple ditto sheet entitled “All About Me,” next to which was a smiley face. It was an open-ended questionnaire beginning with: “My name is _____.” My son brought it home from public school in fourth grade. The questions were highly personal; so much so that they encouraged my son to lie, since he didn’t want to “spill the beans” about his mother, father and brother. The purpose of such a questionnaire was to find out the student’s state of mind, how he felt, what he liked and disliked, and what his values were. With this knowledge it would be easier for the government school to modify his values and behavior at will—without, of course, the student’s knowledge or parents’ consent. That was just the beginning…”

More here.

 

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