For its first year, this blog focused on Accelerated Christian Education, a cult-like fundamentalist education system where children work individually, in silence, at isolated desks. The science curriculum emphasises Young Earth Creationism and mocks evolution. The politics curriculum teaches the views of the Christian Right.
You will find all my posts on the subject by visiting the Accelerated Christian Education category.
In 2009, the government agency UK NARIC validated the ICCE, a qualification based on ACE, saying it was on a par with A levels. Having been through the horrendously abusive education that is ACE, I knew something had to be done, and I began campaigning. In 2012, NARIC completed a second study, and again validated the ICCE as comparable with A levels.
Here are some of the main posts to help you get your head around why this is important:
- ACE is racist (although not as racist as it used to be)
- ACE teaches lies as fact (including the claim that no nuclear fusion occurs in the sun)
- ACE indoctrinates political propaganda
- ACE perverts the scientific method
- ACE teaches MORE lies as fact (including the claim that science proves homosexuality is a learned behaviour)
- ACE indoctrinates MORE political propaganda (all state health care is against God’s will)
- ACE is educationally unsound according to educational experts (every other post – see here, here, here, and here)
- Christian educators and theologians agree that ACE is unsound
- ACE explicitly teaches children to ignore reason and evidence.
- ACE promotes intolerance (on the IOE London blog)
- Historically, ACE has advocated strict corporal punishment; many of its schools still do.
- Accelerated Christian education validated by government agency Gives some reasons why ACE is academically sub-par, regardless of content.
Eventually, the whole thing got so ridiculous that I’ve temporarily retired from blogging about it.
I have also been collecting survivor stories from former ACE students. I’m still doing this. If you have experience of ACE, please tell me about it, and I will post it on the blog. Here are links to all the ones I’ve posted so far:
- Top 3 ACE survivor stories
- More ACE survivor stories (the third is a harrowing case of sexual abuse)
- Being made to feel like you don’t exist (David Waldock; describes the experience of a gay ACE student)
- ACE and Bible Verse Bookmarks (Rebecca Arman)
- Aram’s Progress (Aram McLean, in three parts)
- Be careful, or your karma will run over your dogma (anonymous)
- Speed reading and dinosaur riding (Tim Reinert)
- A collection of ACE/ School of Tomorrow survivor stories (multiple; includes some positive ones)
- The dogma that followed me home (Cat Givens)
- ACE takes over Reddit; survivor stories abound (anonymous)
- Pinochet good; gay bad (Greg)
- A reverence for received knowledge (Matthew Pocock)
- The best email ever (name and address supplied)
- Putting the fundamental in fundamentalist (“Sheldon Cooper”)
- Former ACE employee turns whistleblower (Christine Gregg)
In the interests of fairness, I also post the stories of people who are in favour of ACE, although I get much less of these:
- In defence of ACE (several)
- The benefits and the workings of ACE (Monica Stringer)
- The case for Accelerated Christian Education: parental freedom (Lyndell)
I’ve also written online about ACE for the Guardian, the Times Education Supplement, and a few other places.
- Nessie as evidence against evolution… and five odder things kids are taught (Guardian)
- Are fundamentalist schools up to standard? (Guardian)
- Fundamental errors with evangelist schooling (TES)
- A Fundamental Problem (New Humanist)
There are also good articles by other authors:
- Divine and rule (Guardian)
- Fight for the truth about old Noah (TES)
- God, Gays, and Government (FFWD Weekly)
- Fundamentalists fighting spiritual battle in parliament (Telegraph)
- The Loch Ness Monster ate my A level (Telegraph)
- The Loch Ness Monster, in a science textbook (Washington Post)
Please get in touch if you would like to write a survivor story for the blog.