Skip to comments.Homeschoolers: Is Khan Academy run by liberals?
Posted on 07/27/2013 11:42:05 AM PDT by AlmaKing
I've been looking for a homeschool curriculum for my 6 year old. Khan Academy popped as a possibility, so I read through the website information thoroughly. I found a page which described the teachers' backgrounds and post a few below. It seems like these folks have liberal backgrounds. Many come from Google, Yahoo, various non-profits, arts programs, and other non-traditional backgrounds. I like creativity in teaching and learning, but I'm hesitant to use this site after seeing these backgrounds.
Elizabeth Content Scaling
Elizabeth works with math teachers, tutors, and professors to ensure Khan Academy's exercises comprehensively and rigorously cover the Common Core Standards so that students and teachers can easily find content appropriate to their level.
Craig Dean of Infrastructure
Craig is focused on the infrastructure that supports Khan Academy, from its databases to its developer tools.
Before joining, Craig worked for Google, where he was the first employee hired by Larry and Sergey.
Charlotte Manager of External Relations
Charlotte focuses on Khan Academys external relationships.
Prior to joining Khan Academy, Charlotte was the Business Manager and Director of Admissions of The School for Ethics and Global Leadership (SEGL) in Washington, DC. Charlotte was the first hire at SEGL and helped open the school. She received her BA from Haverford College.
James Software Engineer
James keeps improving site performance and creating new features for the Khan Academy.
Previously James was a lead engineer at education.com, ran a non-profit delivering an email system to the developing world, and was a math teacher in the Peace Corps in Tanzania. He received two degrees from CMU in Physics and Computer Science.
Chris Software Engineer
Chris wields his experience with highly reliable, multilingual websites to support lifelong learning through Khan Academy.
Before joining, Chris spent a few years building the Yahoo! homepage.
Joel Computer Science Beloved Leader
Known alternately as "Dear Father" and "Eternal Leader", Joel provides computer science tools to his thankful subjects, who are the happiest people in the world and love him dearly.
Alex Software Engineer
Alex believes in interactive, immersive education. Every day he brings science fiction just a bit closer to reality.
Prior to Khan Academy, Alex helped make peer-to-peer car sharing a reality with Getaround.
I think it is liberal. It’s just a guy and some staffers putting info out on subjects...not a real curriculum, much less accredited etc.
I just noticed that there’s a place near us called The Northstar Academy. I looked it up and I think it’s a home schooling org. Christian.
I read somewhere that Bill Gates funds it.
Perhaps you should look at the humanities section to see if its adequately unbiased. Hard to bias mathematics and such though.
Of course they’re liberals. Rock-ribbed conservatives wouldn’t be producing free videos.
I’ve used some KA videos and they are pure instruction. Want to know how to perform an algebra function or what is Newton’s Second Law? Just watch the video. They aren’t like leftist public skoolz where every topic has to find a way back to racism, gay marriage, or global climate change.
No, not paranoid at all. Liberals are infiltrating all kinds of formerly conservtive institutions....non profits....religious organizations....you have to keep your guard up at all times for this. Even that KLOVE Christian radio network is now infiltrated by liberals. It’s everywhere....
i dont know i thought zero was number one these days
I’ve looked at Khan Academy, although not lately. My take, as of a couple of years ago when it was only a little famous, was that it provided short lecture insight on a wide variety of topics, but it presumed a much higher level of education—say high school. It did not strike me at that time as an organized teaching curriculum for the very young.
Khan is a brilliant guy who has tried to make available access to a wide variety of topics.
I am not aware that they had developed a curriculum for the young, though.
Good one. lol.
>>Perhaps you should look at the humanities section to see if its adequately unbiased.
I only use KA for math and hard science. I’m sure that anything in the humanities or soft sciences would have some bias, since those subjects actually are more bias than fact.
Oh course you are paranoid, you’d turning your back on public union employees and their education camps.
But look more at why you’re examining such websites - you have a clue as to what you want your children to learn. Start with the basics - language (reading, writing and speaking), mathematics, history and critical analysis.
Teach them about the value of money, and the value of hard work resulting in rewards.
Give your children the tools, rather than worry about some abstract lesson plan. Because in the end anything you miss in teaching can be quickly learned.
Link to the ‘team’ page.
That’s what I was thinking, just watch the videos and screen them for bias.
Khan has been useful for test review and extra practice for my college prep students in physics and chemistry.
I would not trust it as a complete curriculum, particularly younger ones.
Look at the content specialist background for STEM:
Lisa is the STEM Coordinator and Math Specialist at the Aventura City of Excellence School in Aventura, Florida, and a member of the editorial panel for the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics journal Teaching Children Mathematics.
Lisa also presents nationally on Common Core Math and Singapore Math, blogs at mathspot.net, and designs mobile apps for Common Core Math.
Somebody was going to do it sooner or later ...
Dean of Computer Science
John works to build tools and design curriculum to teach Computer Science and computer programming.
When I say that to my Indian co-workers, they have no idea what I’m talking about. Most were born years after that movie.
Alma, if the school’s name contains “Khan” I think you would have more to worry about than Liberals. Something like compulsory kneeling toward Mecca between classes, if you catch my drift.
Yes, some of these folks seem quite talented. But talent doesn’t always follow conservative principles. The PhD sitting next to me is quite an excellent engineer, but a rabid Obama fan.
I think that’s a commonly used name in Indian culture meaning ‘King’. Not sure that it’s always associated with Islam.
Came for the Shatner reference, leaving satisfied.
I don’t know Khan, but really - I wouldn’t buy a curriculum if I were you. You want to teach your child how to read, right? ANY book will do - read to him. They don’t need phonics workbooks. You want to teach him math? Get one of those Spectrum Math workbooks and help him through it. You know more than any six year old. You want to teach him about science? Mix stuff in the kitchen. Get a blister microscope that you can look at bugs and bread with. You want to teach him about animals? Go to the zoo. It is really that easy. Make a list of what is really important and teach him. And have a great time. You can homeschool very cheaply - we did.
My 11 year old loves Kahn academy, but he is already very aware of the craziness of progressives in education. I can trust him to explore these sites and use discernment.
I would not allow him to search those sites alone, when he was 6. He also liked Brain Pop, which can have a heavy liberal agenda too. I would tell him which little videos he could and could not watch.
If your discernment is raised, it is for a good reason. Do not second doubt your instincts for your child.
My oldest homeschooled child is now 15, grade level 13 plus, 98% in most subjects, and he does currently attend HighSchool.
He loves football and honors classes and Lacrosse and of course the social stuff.
The 11 year old just got 100% on the ACT in Math. He loves all science, esp Chemistry.
These are good, good kids.
My best advice to you is, listen to yourself. YOU are the expert on your child. No one else’s opinion matters. Hone your instinct and do not be afraid to go balls to the wall, when you know what is right for your child.
You are going do great. God bless.
That’s what I’m doing. But, I feel like I’m selling him short, like something is missing. Of course, I went to very structured schools, so maybe it’s just my background and I’m trying to be too rigid.
*sigh*. No, that’s not so.
Thank you. I’m doing this despite my father and other family members expressing doubts about it. They are worried about the interaction he will miss with others his age.
The math lessons look ok but I looked at some of the history lessons and my blood boiled. Watch some of those non math lessons and you’ll see the standard liberal clap trap....i.e capitalism depicted as a guy with a top hat.
Alma, NEVER doubt homeschooling as a best option. The only thing to question is which curriculum. FWIW here is the piece 60 Minutes ran on Khan Academy.
Myself I don’t trust the corporatist-backed type groups.
Great for Math and Science. I would not use it for other subjects. I wish it was available when I struggled through Calculus.
Khan was raised by his Hindu mother and had an absentee Muslim father. Not personally religious, but the Muzzie’s try to take credit for him.
He received a million dollar grant from Bill Gates to expand.
"The surname Khan, originated in Mongolia in Central Asia, used as a reverential title by a sovereign or military ruler, who ruled over a Khanate, representing an area of land and the tribes living therein. It was used by several Mongolian emperors who were mainly Shamanist and Buddhist in their beliefs including Genghis Khan and Kublai Khan. It can have one of several connotations, all related in some capacity to the title of Khan which originated from the Mongol Empire and its subjects and was thereafter historically granted to Muslim rulers. Infiltration of the name from Central Asia into South Asia happened with the coming of the various Muslim Turks, Afghans, and Mughals into South Asia who used this name as a title as well as a suffix to indicate their ethnic identity."
Didn’t this give you a clue?
“Joel Computer Science Beloved Leader
Known alternately as “Dear Father” and “Eternal Leader”
Gives me the creeps...
Please consider making your own curricula. You can customize and make changes as needed. If you have never done this before - have no fear - you will discover it is well worth the effort and the effort becomes joyful. Try using some of the books that have proven to be excellent in the past such as the Saxon Math. There used to be a great book titled “home school your child for free” that had so many websites for just about any subject. I would have used the Khan academy for supportive science and math perhaps if I felt it was needed.
I’m not concerned with their politics, and the contributors vary so much I don’t know if there’s a common thread there.
What I do know is that their content is top notch. At least for the computer science, math, and other hard sciences, it’s hard to politicize that. Take advantage of it. Kahn seems to be altruistic in nature.
Check out Teaching Company recorded lectures. Some of the professors are liberal, some, like Allan Guelzo and and Patrick Allitt, may be conservative. If you listen to a course on Ancient Rome or Babylon or the French Impressionists not much present-day political bias creeps in. Modern Scholar is the competing company.
‘Elizabeth works with math teachers, tutors, and professors to ensure Khan Academy’s exercises comprehensively and rigorously cover the Common Core StandardS...”
that’s enough for me to warn you away without knowing anything else - Common Core.
Okay, Teaching Company is probably going to be over a six-year-old’s head, but for future reference ...
‘Joel Computer Science Beloved Leader
‘Known alternately as “Dear Father” and “Eternal Leader”’
Uh, are they serious or is this an inside joke? Better to leave inside jokes inside, lest you be thought a bunch of jackasses.
Can’t believe it took this long to find a comment on it.
Then again, many people don’t even read the excerpts....
Reading this thread just made me realize something.
My mother is a retired teacher with tons of experience from elementary to teenage and normal and special kids. History, English and Math. She is very conservative. Doesn’t go in for all the BS for “educating” and special education that’s been the rave for 20+ years.
Just the other day she pointed out some workbooks she’s had a while that she loves for math and reading. I also remember well several of her most beloved companies for various texts.
She should’ve made a small business of giving out advice on curricula, including what companies to pick and choose from.
NOT to be confused with Common Core. Entire sequence downloadable for free.
Free, but takes donations. I learned stuff on this site no one has ever been able to explain before.
A portal of free and fee-based material ordered by popularity. The “Reading A-Z” is fee based, but get on their email list because once a year they open each site for free. It took me all day, but I managed to download Writing A-Z.
Free basic math worksheet generator.
Haven't looked at it in years, but each week they'd send a thematic unit, and I collected them all.
McGuffy for reading. There is a place that is reprinting all of their stuff; I'll get that to you later.
Don’t know about Kahn...I homeschooled many years ago. We made up our own curriculum once we hit the 4th grade, Saxon Math, A Beka grammar, Beautiful Feet series, etc (you get the picture.)
But in the younger years I found Calvert to be an excellent curriculum. Haven’t looked at them in years, but was very pleased, back in the “olden” days with their curriculum.
But looking back, I was too concerned with curriculum. I relaxed more, and more, as we went along. The “kid” made it through college and grad school without a hitch. If I had to do it over again, I’d use a math curriculum, a grammar/spelling/writing curriculum, and then we’d just read a lot of books and discuss them for history, science, humanities, etc.
Thanks for your posts. You are contributing to the education of a 6 year old and his parents also. This is why I’m a member of FR.
That’s why I posted that excerpt. Several of their contributors were trying to be cute in the self-descriptions, but this guy does seem to be creepy.
In my 30 years in engineering, I’ve found that there are just some strange birds who just want guru status and followers.
That’s guy’s got some serious “issues”, like Jim Jones and the other cult types.
Why can’t the Koch Brothers pony up for a conservative/libertarian alternative to the Khan Academy? I mean they’ve wasted billions supporting a bunch of phony RINOs.
An online “school” resource that supports/buttresses home and private schools run by conservatives would be pretty awesome
I think you’re paranoid
Just play the games and work on those math skills and tune into some calculus lectures if you can stand it
Personally I like PLATO education courses for math and science, Cicero for History, and Discovery Education Streaming for just about everything