School officials in Lake County, Florida, have reassigned a teacher for posting his religious beliefs on Facebook. Jerry Buell, last year’s teacher of the year at Mount Dora High School, landed in hot water with school authorities because he wrote that “same-sex marriage” is a sin.

Buell quoted the Bible to support his words; however, the school system is suggesting he is not entitled to express certain opinions, even on his own time at his own Facebook page.

What Happened

On July 25, news accounts say, Buell saw a story on television about New York’s approval of homosexual “marriage,” which the Governor, with the help of Republicans, pushed into law. Homosexuals everywhere celebrated with abandon.

But not Jerry Buell. According to Todd Starnes, writing at the Fox News radio website, Buell posted the following comments:

A federal appeals court has ruled that the founders of an Idaho charter school may not sue state officials who banned the school from using the Bible and other Christian texts in the classroom. The Associated Press reported that a panel of judges from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the ruling of a lower court against the Nampa Classical Academy (NCA, emblem at left), which the Idaho Public Charter School Commission closed last year, citing financial concerns. According to the Idaho Reporter, the school’s charter “was yanked by the commission because panel members weren’t confident in the financial soundness of the school. NCA parents and officials say that the commission unfairly singled out their school because of its desire to use religious texts, like the Bible, in the classroom.”

As reported by the AP:

The founders of the charter school tangled with Idaho officials over the use of the Bible and other religious texts shortly after opening in August 2009 with more than 500 students in southwestern Idaho. The academy filed a federal lawsuit against Idaho officials in September 2009.

The Air Force appears to be on an intense crusade to sanitize religious content from its training courses. As reported by The New American, in late July the Air Force suspended a course entitled “Christian Just War Theory” after a group of missile launch officers complained to the Military Religious Freedom Foundation that the ethics course included the Bible and other Christian-themed material. Barely three weeks after the original incident, another Air Force instructor forwarded Power Point slides from a second class to the secularist watchdog group, complaining about that course’s Christian content.

CNN reported that in a lesson “designed to teach the Air Force’s core values to ROTC cadets, Christian beliefs such as the Ten Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount, and the Golden Rule are used as examples of ethical values....” According to CNN, an ROTC instructor brought his complaint to the Military Religious Freedom Foundation after seeing a report on the original complaint brought by the missile officers. “I felt extremely uncomfortable briefing some of these slides, deleted them, and added what I felt were more relevant examples,” the anonymous ROTC instructor wrote in an e-mail to the secularist group.

Starting this year, all children in Detroit’s public schools, from kindergarten through 12th grade, will receive free breakfast, lunch, and snacks, the school system has announced.

Nearly 100,000 schoolchildren will receive the free meals regardless of income, thanks to a program administered by the federal Department of Agriculture. Detroit schools are participating, they say, to eliminate the stigma associated with coming from a low-income household that requires such assistance.

Program Details

The city school system says “the effort is part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Option Program, which will be piloted starting with the 2011-2012 school year.” It adds, "Michigan was one of three states selected to participate in the pilot program. Schools and Districts in Michigan may participate if at least 40 percent of their students are entitled to public assistance."

While unemployment nationwide remains above nine percent in the United States, the State Department continues to bring in foreign exchange students to work for American employers. And at least some of the students aren't happy about it when they get here.

More than 100 student workers walked off the job for the second straight day yesterday and gathered in front of the Hershey Story Museum in downtown Hershey, Pennsylvania, for a protest demonstration over pay and working conditions at the candy maker's Eastern Distribution Center III in nearby Palmyra. About 400 exchange students from as far away as China, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Turkey, and Romania are employed for the summer at the plant, at wages ranging from $7.25 to $8.35 an hour. But several of the protestors said lifting heavy boxes in a warehouse all day is not what they expected and that the payroll deductions, including rent for the mandatory company housing, leaves them with barely enough to live on.

"I pick up boxes that are 40 pounds — I weigh 95 pounds," Yana Bzengney, a 19-year-old student from Ukraine, told the Patriot-News of Harrisburg. She paid $3,500 for the chance to come to the United States and to see the country and its people and maybe visit New York and Washington, D.C, she said. Instead, she has seen little more than the inside of the warehouse.

This is the seventh and final segment in the series on K-12 education.

A front-page August 16 Washington Times’ headline screamed: “Scores show students aren’t ready for college — 75% may need remedial classes.”

Seventy-five percent is a number that gets people’s attention. It isn’t the usual trifling stuff the U.S. Department of Education puts out about math or reading scores being up by two percent one year and down by three percent the next. Add to that another finding reported in the same article: “A 2008 report by the education advocacy group Strong American Schools found that 80 percent of college students taking remedial classes had a high school GPA of 3.0 or better.”

 

Janet Napolitano, the Homeland Security Secretary, confessed last week that the Obama administration will not deport illegal-alien students who would have fallen under the protection of the failed DREAM Act, the amnesty for illegal aliens that traveled under the name of immigration reform.

She made the remarks at a webinar and roundtable on border issues sponsored by NDN, a leftist think tank. The Washington Times reported what she said:

“I will say, and can say, that you know what? They are not, that group, if they truly meet all those criteria, and we see very few of them actually in the immigration system, if they truly meet those [criteria], they’re not the priority,” the secretary said at an event sponsored by NDN, a progressive think tank and advocacy group, on the future of the nation’s border policies.

“The reason we set priorities is so that the focus could be on those in the country who are also committing other illegal acts,” she said.

The University of North Carolina at Wilmington has put out a list of “gay friendly” churches in the area to assist students and faculty in choosing a politically correct place of worship. According to FOX News, the list is part of a “broader guide to gay-friendly businesses, nonprofits, health centers and other services in the area.”

But one professor has questioned why the university should be making recommendations to anyone about where they should go to church. “It’s just amazing,” criminology professor Mike Adams told FOX. “It appears to me to be the height of not just silliness, but government waste.”

The university’s LGBTQIA (that’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex and allied) Office described the list as a “local resource guide [for] lgbt staff and faculty.”
 

Most voters today no longer remember a time when the tenets of “progressive education” were not part of their everyday lives. It no longer seems strange to the average parent, for example, that what once gave America its cohesiveness, as well as its economic and cultural “edge” over other countries, is largely missing from the school environment and curriculum.

The parents of the Baby Boomers reacted too late once they started noticing the disappearance of “a common body of knowledge … that common group of heroes and villains, images and values, of which national spirit is born,” as the late historian Henry Steele Commager described it. In its place came a leftist mix of progressivism and psychology, eventually marketed as “functional literacy.” Today, this psychologized progressivism has impacted every facet of society. Having been institutionalized in classrooms, and passed along to society via newspapers and newscasts, popular magazines, entertainment, and the arts, it is taking on new life in the voting booth.

This is the sixth segment in a series on K-12 education.  Although John Dewey, the originator of “progressive education,” defied most of the cultural, moral, and economic norms of his era, his message nevertheless somehow mainstreamed its way into K-12 schools nationwide. Dewey characterized himself as a “democratic socialist.” Over the years, his writings increasingly underscored an aversion to the free-market system; an abhorrence of religion, especially Christianity; a distaste for educational basics such as reading and writing; and finally, in 1928, an admiration for Soviet schooling — for the creation of what he called a “collectivistic mentality.” Given the traditionalistic norms of the 1920s and 30s, the likelihood of his affecting a sea change in education seemed about as likely as the United States replacing the Constitution with Shariah law. Then again, strange things happen, and not usually by chance.

Throughout Dewey’s voluminous writings, two themes recur: that education and learning are interactive processes, which had some basis, and that the school itself is a social institution through which social reform can and should take place, which paved the way for political opportunists.

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