School testing as a civil right

Teachers, who have big clout in the Democratic Party, don’t like standardized testing, a major reason being that it often provides evidence of their ineffectiveness.  So Democrats generally support gutting No Child Left Behind, George W. Bush’s education law designed to make sure that children who perform poorly get the help they need.  Republicans, who are usually against a federal role in education, are mostly OK with scrapping the law.

But now civil rights groups are arguing that mandatory testing is a matter of civil rights.   Poor and minority students have a right to an education, they argue, and mandatory testing identifies the students who need extra help and makes sure school systems don’t ignore them. [Read more...]

U. S. History as oppression studies

The National Association of Scholars, an organization of conservative academics, has put out an FAQ page on what is wrong with the new Advanced Placement U. S. History exam.  It sums up well the problems also with the Common Core, contemporary text books, and the state of the history profession in general.

The point is not that America doesn’t have skeletons in its closet and that we need to study those bad parts of our history.  It’s that these have become the only emphasis, and that other important facets of our history (the concepts behind our constitution) and just facts in general (why we fought World War II) are left out. [Read more...]

Universities recruiting girls to have late-term abortions

The University of Hawaii and the University of Washington-Seattle are recruiting girls as young as 14 to have second-trimester abortions, as part of a research study on those kill-and-dismember procedures. [Read more...]

When children played

Did you know there was a time when children on their own played games, sang songs, collected things, and had fun outside?

The Intercollegiate Review has posted an excerpt from the estimable Anthony Esolen’s book on child-raising (and how not to do it), Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Child. [Read more...]

Readiness for 1st grade then and now

In a column on the cops busting the parents for letting their 10 and 6 year olds walk home from the park by themselves, columnist Petula Dvorak has a felicitous sentence:  “Our rapid march toward police-state parenting has got to end.”  But then she compares the checklists to see if your child is ready for 1st grade from today as compared to 1979. [Read more...]

The American history wars

Back in 1994, Lynne Cheney, former head of the National Endowment for the Humanities, published a piece in the Wall Street Journal entitled The End of History, criticizing educational standards for American History.  Now she has published The End of History, Part II, about the new Advance Placement American History exam.  See excerpts after the jump and consider the points I raise. [Read more...]


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