Skip to comments.Successful School Curriculum Under Attack
Posted on 08/03/2012 6:32:40 AM PDT by Kaslin
As a longtime school choice advocate, I am always in favor of giving parents the tools they need to ensure their children receive a high quality education, which is necessary to compete in todays global marketplace. And as a visiting professor of law at Liberty University and former associate professor at Xavier University, I know how a rigorous education is critical for students to be prepared to get the most value out of their time at college.
Therefore, I am disturbed by a recent development in states such as Idaho, where members of the school board are questioning the worth of this program despite its value to students. Or in New Hampshire, where fringe activists claiming to be members of the Tea Party are supporting bills to shut down a rigorous education program. You may be familiar with schools which have advanced placement (AP) classes, where students are given the opportunity to take accelerated classes. The program in question, International Baccalaureate (IB), was started in 1968 and is even more rigorous. Offered in 1,311 primary and secondary American schools, IB has a track record of helping shape young minds into accomplished life-long learners and ethical leaders. And for poor minority students in rough neighborhoods such as Chicago, IB has been a ticket for many motivated students out of dependency and poverty.
IB is accepted by more than 1000 U.S. universities- such as MIT, John Hopkins, and the Naval and Air Force academies- as an exemplary mark of academic achievement. Some universities automatically enroll high school students who finish the IB Diploma Program. And hundreds of universities offer college credit for IB classes, which saves students time and money.
In addition, according to a recent study by the Stanford Research Institute, not only are IB students much more likely than other students to attend a selective college, most (81%) finish their program within 6 years. That is compared to the national average of 57%, which has been a strain on taxpayers and has added to our current student loan default crisis.
So, what is the objection to IB? Because the program is available across the globe, encourages students to learn a second language, and teaches students about other cultures, it appears that the conspiratorial-right is claiming the program is part of a plot to erode American sovereignty through the United Nations and create a one-world, socialist government.
It is a shame William F. Buckley is not alive today because he spent a lifetime building a respectable and electorally-successful conservative movement, while rejecting kooks from organizations such as the John Birch Society. Our movement needs to be concerned about actual threats to our sovereignty, such as unelected judges who cite international law in their decisions or inappropriate treaties such as the Law of the Sea. No one can fill WFBs shoes, but I am here to insist that an intense and vigorous education to prepare students for a global world is a good thing! To claim otherwise makes self-labeled conservatives sound anti-intellectual, paranoid, and detached from legitimate political discourse.
As Kentucky Senator Rand Paul said while visiting an elementary school with a successful IB program, I think the one-size-fits-all (model) coming out of Washington is not the way to go. I think we need to empower innovative, creative, talented principals and teachers to do their jobs and let the success come. Programs such as No Child Left Behind and the elimination of voucher programs are examples of how busybody bureaucrats inflict permanent damage on entire generations of students.
We were each endowed with abilities from the Almighty. And education policy must free up local communities to offer programs to allow students to maximize their God-given potential. School choice, parental control, and a vigorous, classical education are at the heart of conservative philosophy.
Democrates as school bullies who attack the bright student. It is typical. They are like crack heads and drunks who demand their liquor money.
That's why it's under attack. Can't have ethical leaders running around loose, now can we?..........
If there is opposition to school choice no matter where,the culprits are the AFT_NEA.And they throw a lot of money around.In most states they control the majority of Democrats.They are so powerful in NYS that they can get ANY bill they want through the state legislature.Money talks.
I decided to find out what the John Birch Society's objections were. It seems that the IB program is rigorous, but its rigor includes a lot of indoctrination into one-world multiculturalism.
Nevertheless, folks are misled into believing todays IB program is top-drawer, just like its predecessor. But the modern IB bears no resemblance to the 1950s-era program. From its inception in the 1940s, there were ideological biases toward socialism, but in areas such as math, science, literature, spelling, geography and history, it was the gold standard. Today, both the IB curricula and its tests have undergone profound changes.Read more at the link.
Todays IB (like most ordinary K-12 curriculums) operates in partnership with UNESCO, and therefore is consistent with United Nations dogma. The IB is U.N. dogma on steroids, and redistribution of wealth is an overriding, subliminal theme.
The biggest difference between the American creed and IB is that our Declaration of Independence insists that government is beholden to the people; it does not exist to protect itself. This view puts teeth into the notion of inalienable, individual rights, which is one reason socialist-leaning schools here at home gloss over the Declaration as if it were Thomas Jeffersons unsolicited opinion.
Under the U.S. Bill of Rights, government has only those rights that the people say it has. The U.N. takes the position, in its Universal Declaration on Human Rights (Universal Declaration of Human Rights [UDHR], Article 29, Section 3), that: "rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations [italics mine]. This small phrase is key: Under the UDHR, people have only those rights the United Nations (ergo, government) says they have.
This thread is probably going to set the record for “Didn’t read the article” replies.
Although I won’t criticize the IB diploma program (grades 11-12),the PYP and MYP programs are a communist’s wet dream, full of environmental, world peace modules all the way from KG to 10.
Anyone supporting such a program on FR who thinks differently should look into the IB’s origins!
My kids go to an IB elementary school. The IB program is ultra-progressive, one world, all cultures are equal, leftist crap. The only rigorous thing about it is the indoctrination.
So far, I’m effectively countering it, and the older son goes to a middle school this fall that isn’t IB.
Teachers at grandkid’s school say that the IB does have such a curriculum. I also heard with my own ears an IB math teacher saying almost what the article said... that in the US, the main purpose of government is to protect rights that were granted to us by God but in many other countries, rights are granted by [and taken away by] government. That’s a paraphrase but that’s what he said :)
‘Course I am in NE Ga and we’re pretty far right of center. “One Nation Under God” posters in every class room too. So, it’s not everywhere that public schools are cesspools. Problems to be sure - but anything gov’t run is inefficient, slow to respond, etc. Example ... the math teacher in question said they have a new math curriculum but no new text until next year. Would that ever happen in a private school???
Thank you for this article. I am a teacher & have NEVER heard of IB. I do teach in MS & would be surprised if it existed here. I will now do some research.
We shouldn’t blindly accept IB before we do, or an organization we trust does, a DETAILED check of what is in the curriculum. The John Burch Society should not be automatically presumed wrong about everything. There are many paths to educational quality, and IB is only one of them.
At the risk of getting flamed, let me offer my opposition to the idea of school of choice. I'll try to make it brief, but basically it's this: first of all, kids should attend school in the district in which their parents pay school taxes and vote for the school board.
Secondly, SOC will destroy your district because the kids who leave their own failing districts are usually the kids who have gotten kicked out (or in the case of elementary school, those who've gotten very long suspensions) or who are going to be held back, or headed for failure. I have only anecdotal evidence, having worked in a formerly high-achieving district only to have it now on the state's list of failing schools due solely to the school of choice program which came into existence within the past 10 years.
The reason for failing schools in most cases, if we are going to be honest about it, is the behavior and the attitude of the child. And when the entire school is made up mostly of behavior problems, then you're going to have failing schoolsWhether it's the culture, home life, whether they're crack-babies, I don't know.
Now, in an effort to "fix the broken school systems" that really weren't broken, the the feds and the state have come in and completely dumbed down the curriculum, which really wasn't broken in the first place. And the behavior is worse. And they keep spending more resources and effort on trying to understand and correct the behavior and meet all of the learning differentials. It's a mess.
And now the statists' goal of a national curriculum has finally been achieved from all this interventional meddling by the state and its implementation of national standards to correct a problem that never existed but for that meddling in the first place and a huge contributing factor to this was schools of choice. It's really a perfect example of the Hegalian Dialectic.
... that, and that nowadays it is illegal to take common-sense measures to improve it.