Skip to comments.GEORGE COUNTS the founder of Modern American Education.
Posted on 02/16/2004 2:45:15 PM PST by vannrox
GEORGE COUNTS (1889-1974)
George Counts entered graduate school at the University of Chicago in 1913. At this time the School of Education was influenced by John Dewey and Francis W. Parker. Educators were determined to develop a plan for the science of education. Charles Hubbard Judd was one of the leaders of this plan. George Counts was a student of Charles Hubbard Judd.
George Counts finished his doctorate in education in 1916 and also studied sociology under Albion W. Small. His experience in sociology made him concentrate on the sociological dimension of educational research. He got his first job as head of the Department of Education at Delaware College. His next job was at Harris Teachers College in 1918. He left there and went to the University of Washington in 1919. George Counts then went to Yale in 1920. He returned to the University of Chicago in 1926. His long career at Teachers College, Columbia University began in 1927.
George Counts wrote "The Principles of Education" with J. Crosby Chapman. It was a philosophical, psychological, and methodological overview of American Education (Gutek, 250). The Principles of Education of 1924 favored the philosophy of John Dewey. In the 1920's Counts shared in the child-centered movement in progressive education.
George Counts wrote "Dare the School Build a New Social Order?" which is a pamphlet that consists of three papers that were read in February 1932 at national educational meetings. One paper was read before the Progressive Education Association in Baltimore, another paper before a division of the Department of Superintendence in Washington, and another paper before the National Council of Education in Washington. The titles of the three papers were: Dare Progressive Education Be Progressive; Education Through Indoctrination; and Freedom, Culture, Social Planning, and Leadership.
George Counts wanted teachers to lead society instead of following society. The teachers were leaders and should be policy makers who could decide between conflicting purposes and values. Teachers should be concerned with school matters, but should also be concerned with controversial matters of economics, politics, and morality. George Counts believed the school was an agency involved in society's politics, economics, art, religion, and ethics (Ornstein/Levine, 144). If the school was involved it could either reflect the knowledge, beliefs, and values of the society, or it could seek to change them (Ornstein/Levine, 144). The school, in order to be socially reconstructive, had to help solve problems. George Counts believed American schools needed to identify with such progressive forces as labor unions, farmers' organizations, and minority groups (Ornstein/Levine, 143). By joining with groups that wanted to change society, the schools then could make social improvements. If school teachers were to act as statespersons, then the solving of major issues would result in a new social order (Ornstein/Levine, 144).
In conclusion, George Counts liked the progressive type of education. He wrote many papers, but is most noted for writing "Dare the School Build a New Social Order?" He also believed that teachers could help change society.
Gutek, Gerald. The Educational Theory George S. Counts. Ohio: Ohio State University Press, 1970.
Ornstein, Allan, and Daniel Levine. Foundations of Education. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1993.
Prepared by Christine Teeter
by Berit Kjos
History keeps repeating itself, but few heed its warnings. If our leaders did, they would know that today's massive attempt to transform our culture by nationalizing education will bring repression, not freedom. They would see that the manipulative strategies of Mastery Learning will create human puppets, not independent thinkers.
In spite of the information explosion, America hasn't heard the message. Perhaps our leading change agents don't know what their deceptive strategies and dumbed-down curricula will do to our children. Maybe they haven't noticed the similarities between their educational strategies and former Nazi tactics for molding young minds and teaching group conformity. Perhaps today's psychological manipulations are simply a modern expression of human "wisdom" without biblical guidelines. However, it seems clear that U.S. and Nazi change agents share one tragic trait: the dearth of the kind of honesty and integrity that once made America safe for children.
That propaganda and indoctrination were two of the cornerstones of Nazi education is no secret. Hitler's goal was National Socialism, a fascist state that would subdue the world. Learning his lessons from Soviet revolutionaries, he knew that only cloaked promises and misleading visions could win the support of the unsuspecting masses -- and build a compliant army of young radicals. That America's educational and political leaders would stoop to the same low standard has remained hidden from the general public. That their aim is global socialism with cradle-to-grave surveillance is angrily denied by the trained and trusted guardians of our children's minds.
If the sleeping public doesn't wake up and resist soon, it will surely be too late to stop the rising tide of deception that threatens to engulf our children. If so, God's people will once again have demonstrated the blinding consequences of spurning truth and loving lies.
The source of the following quotations is the 1983 book, Nazism: A History in Documents and Eyewitness Accounts, 1919-1945, edited by J. Noakes and G. Pridham in cooperation with the Department of History and Archaeology at the University of Exeter. It represents years of research into the primary documents of the Nazi era. Many of its following quotes have been shortened in order to include as many illustrations as possible within the given space. The page numbers are given at the end of each quote.
Since this comparison was written to accompany my book, Brave New Schools, I have not included definitions and explanations of the new American/international education system. All the terms and buzzwords are explained in Brave New Schools and defined in its glossary.
The bold type introducing the quotes refers to the various aspects of the global system scheduled to be in place by year 2001. The quotes represent the Nazi system.
Please wake up, America!
TRANSFORM THE WORLD BY CHANGING THE CHILDREN
Change the children first: "The Nazi leadership appreciated the difficulty of indoctrinating the older generation.... They were all the more determined to mold the new generation along Nazi lines. As the leader of the Nazi Teacher's League, Hans Schemm, put it: 'Those who have the youth on their side control the future.'" (416)
Create world-class citizen: "...create a new type of student..." (440)
TEACH POLITICALLY CORRECT BELIEFS AND VALUES
Condition students for the new social and economic order: "German youth must no longer... be confronted with the choice of whether it wishes to grow up in a spirit of materialism or idealism, of racism or internationalism, of religious or godlessness, but it must be consciously shaped according to principles which are recognized as correct...according to the principles of the ideology of National Socialism." (432)
Censorship of contrary models: "The teaching... aimed to encourage a 'consciousness of being German.... In the selection of teaching materials they should eschew those works which 'contradict German feelings or paralyze energies necessary for self-assertion' and only those modern works would be selected which 'have an affinity with the spirit of the new Germany'." (437)
ESTABLISH AN OUTCOME-BASED EDUCATION SYSTEM
Restructure schools and nationalize tests and standards: "the regime endeavored to assert its control over the education system through reorganization and centralization..." (433)
Affective (feeling-centered, attitudinal), not cognitive, learning earns the graduation certificate: "Many pupils believe they can simply drift through for eight years and secure their school-leaving certificate even with minimal intellectual performance... [T]hose pupils who are in positions of leadership... often display unmannerly behavior and laziness at school. in general, it must be said that school discipline has declined to an alarming extent..." (429)
School-to-Work link: "The new movement offered prospects of future employment at a time of massive graduate unemployment." (440)
IMPLEMENT MASTERY LEARNING
Condition students to become social servants, not individuals--but tell the public the opposite: "'...the principal task of the school is the education of youth in the service of ... the State in the National Socialist spirit.' This made clear the Nazi's determination to shift the focus of education away from the needs of the individual and the development of his potential as a human being to the requirements of the community of nation and State, of which the individual was a member and to which he must subordinate himself." (436)
Politically correct standards for right and wrong: "Munich professors [were warned]: 'From now on it is not up to you to decide whether or not something is true, but whether it is in the interest of the national Socialist Revolution." (446)
Set affective, not cognitive, goals (outcomes): "The more enthusiastic they get, the easier are the exams and the sooner they will get a position .... The new generation has never had much use for education and reading. Now nothing is demanded of them; on the contrary, knowledge is publicly condemned." (427)
Forget facts. Teach "right" attitudes or "character" through feel-good experiences: An important aspect of Nazi education was the cult of 'Experience' as being more crucial to the development of the individual than the academic process of learning with its stress on 'knowledge'. Unlike knowledge which involves the intellect, experience involved 'feeling' which alone provided access to the deep truths of Nazism which were essentially based on [ideological unity]. Such an 'experience'... was regarded as essential to character-building. (441)
Reject old authority figures through critical thinking and values clarification: "It appealed to the desire of youth to be independent of the adult world and exploited the conflict of generations and the typical tendency for young people to challenge authority figures, whether parents or teachers." (429)
Confuse students' values through shocking stimuli and values clarification exercises (including sex and AIDS education): "...particularly teachers in secondary schools, were alienated by the crudity of its indoctrination." (433)
INFUSE NEW VALUES THROUGH "REAL LIFE" LEARNING
Create new beliefs and values through multicultural and global education: "New courses were introduced in such fields as racial studies, eugenics, and defense studies and there was a new emphasis on pre-history... Law and political science courses were adapted to fit in with the changes introduced by the regime." (446)
Arts, crafts, and multicultural experience: "People told stories, danced and practiced handicrafts..." (423)
Teach math through integrated curriculum: "Other subjects such as math and foreign language were less subject to ideological contamination. Even here however, Nazi ideology could enter by the back door, as is clear from the following tests...: 'Question 95: The construction of a lunatic asylum costs 6 million RM. How many houses at 15,000 RM each could have been built for that amount?'" (438-439)
Peer Counseling: "The slogan 'youth must be led by youth'... was ritually echoed and to some extent followed in practice. But the spirit in which it was applied was very different These young leaders were not representing an autonomous youth culture but were functionaries of an official bureaucracy regimented by rules and regulations and following set patterns of training." (422)
Condition students to compliance: "It was preferred that people should not have a will of their own and should totally subordinate themselves." (428)
Lifelong Learning requires training, testing, remediation, more test and training: "If they have still not become real National Socialists, then they go into the Labor Service and are polished there... And if after six or seven months, there are still remnants of class consciousness or pride in status, then the Wehrmacht will take over the further treatment... and when they return after two or four years then, to prevent them from slipping back into old habits once again, we take them immediately into the SA, SS, etc., and they will not be free again for the rest of their lives." (417)
"Service learning": "The purpose of labor service was partly practical--to... provide a source of cheap labor--but mainly ideological. It was a part of the cult of community current in the youth movement now manipulated by the Nazis for their own end. Students would be confronted with Real Life and, by being forced to mix with the less privileged sections of the community, would be reminded that they were all [national comrades] together." (440-441)
Mandatory service: "Service in the Hitler Youth is honorary service to the German people. All young people are obliged from the age of 10 to their 19th birthday to serve in the Hitler youth." (420)
Character Education and Cooperative Learning: "We cannot fight our way out of this deep crisis through intellectualism... The school for character... which is a practical test of true comradeship in work and living is irreplaceable.... the true, great, practical school is... in the labor camp, for here instruction and words cease and action begins." (441)
New content: "...in addition to controlling and indoctrinating the teaching profession, reorganizing the education system and establishing new elite schools, the regime sought to influence youth through the content of what was taught in schools." (436) "Relevance" and historical revision: "The course of history must not appear to our young people as a chronicle which strings events together indiscriminately, but, as in a play, only the important events, those which have a major impact on life, should be portrayed." (438)
First indoctrinate teachers: "The real task of the NSLB is to create the new German educator in the spirit of National Socialism. It is being carried out with the same methods with which the movement has conquered the whole nation: indoctrination and propaganda." (432)
Certify compliant teachers. "The Nazi party... realized they could do little with the existing professors if they outwardly conformed. They concentrated, therefore, on trying to transform the profession by controlling entry and promotion within it throgh process of political indoctrination...." (444)
The oppressive tactics of the NEA: "Teachers were, however, also subject to control from their professional association, the National Socialist Teachers' League (NSLB)... it expanded through a mixture of propaganda and intimidation... The main functions of the NSLB were, first, the provision of reports on the political reliability of teachers for appointments and promotions and, secondly, the ideological indoctrination of teachers..." (431)
Conform or resign. "Most academics were either apolitical or approved of at least some aspects of the regime.... Those who did not, were either forced out or intimidated into silence." (445)
SILENCE THE OPPOSITION
Block the negative influence of parents and traditional culture: "...these boys join our organization at the age of ten...four years later, they move from the Jungvolk to Hitler Youth and there we keep them for another four years. And then we are even less prepared to give them back into the hands of those who create our class and status barriers..." (417)
Punish parents who protect their children from state indoctrination: "A legal guardian will be liable to a fine up to 150 RM or to imprisonment, if he deliberately contravenes the stipulation #9 of this decree (registration for Hitler Youth)." (420)
Vouchers and Christian schools: "Private schools and denominational schools gradually succumbed to various pressures: the loss of government subsidies or tax concessions...." (434)
FACE THE CONSEQUENCES
Some resist the crude, immoral, and anti-intellectual climate and the pressures to conform: "By the end of the 1930s, a growing number of students were coming to resent the regimentation, the pressures to conform, the anti-intellectual climate, the crudity of the regime's style and its moral duplicity." (443)
Arrogant students: "Teachers, in particular, were also concerned at the contempt for intellect cultivated by the HJ and at the arrogance displayed toward them by pupils who were leaders in the HJ." (429)
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