RED ALERT! CSCOPE! – Tea Party Nation

RED ALERT! CSCOPE! – Tea Party Nation.

RED ALERT!:

The word needs to be gotten out to the American grassroots about this!

This past week, Glenn Beck exposed a new educational system that Obama and the Progressive Socialists put in place, called CScope in TX and Core Curriculum in the rest of the country, and he showed the evidence from their materials, that they are actually teaching school kids all over the country, that Communism is the best system!

They have gotten away with this, by making teachers sign proprietary non-disclosure agreements and preventing parental and state oversight of this curriculum!
Teachers are getting fired for helping expose this, and refusing to teach it!

People need to be screaming bloody murder about this, but of course the mainstream media is in the tank for the Socialists!

http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/03/07/cscope-exposing-the-nati…

If you can get a free trial for Blaze TV, go watch last week’s expose’s of this!

If this isn’t stopped, it will all be over, for capitalism!

PLEASE distribute this to as many Americans as you can!

 

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Useless, Costly Teacher’s Unions – Tea Party Nation

 

Useless, Costly Teacher’s Unions – Tea Party Nation.

By Alan Caruba

As I close in on age 75 I can still tell you the names of most of my teachers from elementary school on up through senior high. Miss Kenniston was my first grade teacher. I was madly in love with Miss Ward in fourth grade. It was the 1940s and 50s. Women had been the predominant gender of the teaching profession since the early 1900s.

Historically, the teacher’s union movement began in Chicago in 1897 and Chicago was the site of the nation’s first teachers strike in 1902. The latest reports indicate that the strike this past week has been settled and all that really means is that Chicago’s school children will once again receive a poor, but very expensive education.

The Heartland Institute, a 28-year-old, national, non-profit research organization is headquartered in Chicago and I have served in an advisory capacity. One of its areas of interest is education.

Robert C. Holland, a Senior Fellow, points out that “Thanks to Chicago’s independently managed charter schools remaining open…50,000 of Chicago’s 400,000 public school children will not be shortchanged. That reality could strongly reinforce in parent’s minds the desirability of school choice for all children.”

Heartland’s S.T. Karnick, Director of Research, noted that “The average teacher salary in Chicago is $74,839, plus benefits far better than those available in the private sector. Yet Chicago Public Schools are among the nation’s worst, which is saying a lot.” According their own data, Chicago’s public schools “failed to make adequate yearly progress in student achievement last year. Children in the city’s private and charter schools do much better at a fraction of the cost.”

Are you thinking what I am thinking? Given the cost of public schools and the fact that the teachers union have negotiated some of the best salaries and perks, all while providing decades of poor performance, why would any city want to continue with this system?

To put it another way, as Heartland’s John Nothdurft, Director of Government Relations, noted, “Chicago Public Schools have offered teachers a four-year package worth $400 million despite the fact that the city is already expected to face a $369 million deficit in 2013.” If you or I conducted our financial affairs in this manner, we would soon be living in a cardboard box on a sidewalk somewhere.

Maureen Martin, Heartland’s Senior Fellow for legal affairs, weighed in with a politically incorrect appraisal of today’s generation of women teachers. “In the 1960s, most high-achieving female college graduates became teachers, largely because they had few other career choices. By 2000, almost none of them became teachers, largely because they had many other career choices.”

“The fact is that female teachers nowadays are not as smart as they used to be. And the fact is that’s why students nowadays are not learning as much as they need to learn in order to succeed.”

So, since Chicago teachers are well paid, the strike is clearly not about money. For the union, says Martin, “Teacher evaluations and potential dismissal of incompetent teachers are front and center in the negotiations, according to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.”

A Washington Post article, “Five Myths about Teachers Unions” noted that a 2009 report by the New Teacher Project “found that 94 percent of teachers in Chicago received ‘superior’ or ‘excellent’ ratings, and just four in 1,000 were rated ‘unsatisfactory’. Clearly , the evaluation system is broken.”

Karen Lewis, the head of the Chicago Teachers Union, when speaking at a teachers’ conference last year was caught on video. She told them “I am the only black woman in the class of 1974 from Dartmouth College. Woo, people are impressed. Let me tell you, I spent those years smoking lots of weed, self-medicating, thank you.” When the audience laughed, she added, “Sounds like you all did too.”

Chicago will yield to the union. Syndicated columnist, Michelle Malkin, explained why:

“The Chicago Teachers Union rakes in nearly $30 million in forced dues from rank and file teachers every year. CTU is an affiliate of the behemoth AFL-CIO, which dropped an estimated $100 million in forced dues to support Democratic candidates and causes during the 2008 and 2010 election cycles.”

I have been hearing and reading about how bad our nation’s schools are since Bill Bennett, the U.S. Secretary of Education from 1985 to 1988, named the Chicago school system the worst in the nation twenty-five years ago!

The reason there has been no improvement in reading scores and other indices, along with a disgraceful drop-out rate of 56% who never make it to graduation, is the teachers’ union. Yes, there are cultural and economic factors, but in a decent school system, even poor children can learn. It should come as no surprise that the highest achievers academically nationwide are those who are home-schooled!

What Illinois and every other State in the nation needs is a right-to-work law. The only way to restore fiscal sanity to their budgets and see real reforms occur is to end the grip of the teachers and other public service unions.

© Alan Caruba, 2012

 

Too big not to fail – Tea Party Nation

 

Too big not to fail – Tea Party Nation.

Posted by Judson Phillips

Too big not to fail

 We have heard of too big to fail.  There is one entity that we have in this nation that is so big it must fail.  As an institution it is a failure.  The only hope many people have is for this institution to fail and be replaced.

 What is this institution that has done so much damage and must be replaced?

 It is the public education system.

 If you have any doubt about it, look what is happening in Chicago.

 Chicago teachers are striking.  They are demanding a 20% pay raise this year alone.  Chicago teachers are already the highest paid in the nation, with salaries of over $76,000 a year before benefits!

 What’s wrong with the Chicago schools? 

 They have a 40% dropout rate. 

 That is right, almost one out of every two students drops out!

 With that kind of failure rate, these teachers should not be demanding a raise.  They should be damn grateful to have a job.

 Unfortunately for America, public education is now education of the teachers’ union, by the teachers’ union and for the teachers’ union. 

 The educational bureaucracy in America is massive, bloated and out of control.

 It is time for it to go.

 America’s test scores continue to drop.  We used to be the best in the world in math and science.  Now, some third world countries are doing as well as we are.  For two generations, we have heard the mantra; more pay and smaller classes will solve all of the world’s issues.  

 We’ve tried that for forty years.  What has the result been?  Test scores continue to drop.  Dropout rates continue to rise.  When Johnny graduates, he is lucky if he can read his diploma.

 We need change.

 We need to cast the public education system into the ash heap of history and start all over.

 How do we do that?

 Vouchers and independent schools.

 We need to turn our education departments into accreditation departments and not providers of education.  After all, they have already failed at that mission.

 Let’s create news schools, owned by both profit and non-profit corporations.  Let’s give every child in the state a voucher for the cost of the current public education and they can take that any where within their city or county to get an education.

 Public education is socialism at its finest.  How do socialists allocate resources?  By the direction of the government instead of the free market and it is rationed.  That is why certain zip codes have the best schools.  That is why if you want to get your kid into a preferential school in some areas you have to camp out in front of the board of education for a couple of nights to be first in line.   Instead of letting these issues be resolved by the free market, government plans and the plans fail.

 The free market system will allow every parent the opportunity to get their child into a good school.  Bad schools will be almost non-existent because bad schools will fail.  If a school is so bad no parent wants to put their child in that school, it will go out of business. 

 We have run public education the way the socialists want us to for seventy years or longer.  How many times does education have to fail before we realize government control of education is the problem?

 We can either give in to the union thugs who are trying to run education or we can put them out of business and give kids a good education.

 Let’s tear this broken system down!

 

The Education Blob – John Stossel – Townhall.com

The Education Blob – John Stossel – Townhall.com.

Since progressives want government to run health care, let’s look at what government management did to K-12 education. While most every other service in life has gotten better and cheaper, American education remains stagnant.

Spending has tripled! Why no improvement? Because K-12 education is a virtual government monopoly — and monopolies don’t improve.

In every other sector of the economy, market competition forces providers to improve constantly. It’s why most things get better — often cheaper, too (except when government interferes, as in health care).

Politicians claim that education and health care are different — too important to leave to market competition. Patients and parents aren’t real consumers because they don’t have the expertise to know which hospital or school is best. That’s why they must be centrally planned by government “experts.”

Those experts have been in charge for years. School reformers call them the “Blob.” Jeanne Allen of the Center for Education Reform says that attempts to improve the government monopoly have run “smack into federations, alliances, departments, councils, boards, commissions, panels, herds, flocks and convoys that make up the education industrial complex, or the Blob. Taken individually, they were frustrating enough, each with its own bureaucracy, but taken as a whole they were (and are) maddening in their resistance to change. Not really a wall — they always talk about change — but more like quicksand, or a tar pit where ideas slowly sink.”

The Blob claims teachers are underpaid. But today American teachers average more than $50,000 a year. Teachers’ hourly wages exceed what most architects, accountants and nurses make.

The Blob constantly demands more money, but tripling spending and vastly increasing the ratio of staff to student have brought no improvement. When the Blob is in control, waste and indifference live on and on.

The Blob claims that public education is “the great equalizer.” Rich and poor and different races mix and learn together. It’s a beautiful concept. But it is a lie. Rich parents buy homes in neighborhoods with better schools.

As a result, public — I mean, government — schools are now more racially segregated than private schools. One survey found that public schools were significantly more likely to be almost entirely white or entirely minority. Another found that at private schools, students of different races were more likely to sit together.

The Blob’s most powerful argument is that poor people need government-run schools. How could poor people possibly afford tuition?

Well, consider some truly destitute places. James Tooley spends most of his time in the poorest parts of Africa, India and China. Those countries copied America’s “free public education,” and Tooley wanted to see how that’s worked out. What he learned is that in India and China, where kids outperform American kids on tests, it’s not because they attend the government’s free schools. Government schools are horrible. So even in the worst slums, parents try to send their kids to private, for-profit schools.

How can the world’s poorest people afford tuition? And why would they pay for what their governments offer for free?

Tooley says parents with meager resources still sacrifice to send their kids to private schools because the private owner does something that’s virtually impossible in government schools: replace teachers who do not teach. Government teachers in India and Africa have jobs for life, just like American teachers. Many sleep on the job. Some don’t even show up for work.

As a result, says Tooley, “the majority of (poor) schoolchildren are in private school.” Even small villages have as many as six private schools, “and these schools outperform government schools at a fraction of the teacher cost.”

As in America, government officials in those countries scoff at private schools and parents who choose them. A woman who runs government schools in Nigeria calls such parents “ignoramuses.” They aren’t — and thanks to competition, their children won’t be, either.

Low-income Americans are far richer than the poor people of China, India and Africa. So if competitive private education can work in Beijing, Calcutta and Nairobi, it can work in the United States.

We just need to get around the Blob.

Default fault – Tea Party Nation

The New York Times building in New York, NY ac...

The New York Times building in New York, NY across from the Port Authority. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Default fault – Tea Party Nation.

Posted by Judson Phillips

Yesterday the New York Times, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Democrat Party and the socialist movement, did a story on the debt levels college graduates are facing.   The story sought to place the blame for all of these students in debt.

 There is fault here for the student loan crisis.  And it is not what the official newspaper of cat litter pans everywhere says. 

 Who is responsible for the student loan crisis?

 As with most major disasters, there is more than one source of fault.  The Times of course wants to blame it on a lack of government spending.  Since that is where the Times assigns fault, you can determine right away, without any further research that those are not the causes.

 One of the biggest causes of this crisis are the students themselves and their families.  At 18 years old, someone should have told these students the basics of economics.  If you borrow money, you have to pay it back — with interest.

 One of the students featured in the story, named Kelsey Griffith said, “I knew a private school would cost a lot of money. But when I graduate, I’m going to owe like $900 a month. No one told me that.”

 What the hell were you thinking?   What the hell were your parents thinking?  Did you think you just won the lottery?  Did you think the bank was just going to give you the money and not expect it to be paid back?

 This is someone who has graduated from high school and has almost graduated from college and cannot figure this out. In true liberal-indoctrinated fashion, it’s not their fault.

 One of the biggest problems is the unrealistic expectation of these students and their families.  They cannot all afford to go to these nice private schools.   Some of these kids need to go to regular state universities and some of them, perish the though, should just start out in community college!

 Another major cause of this student loan crisis is the fact these loans are guaranteed by the government.  Talk about crony capitalism! 

 The banks have an incredible deal.   If the student pays their loans back, the banks will make profit off the interest.  If they do not, the government will cover the bank’s loss.

 And there is the problem.  The banks do not care about the loans.  If you can fog a mirror, and you are in college, you can get these loans.

 The banks do not ask the questions they would normally ask say for a business loan.  They do not ask important questions like where is this money going, are you majoring in a field that will allow you to pay this loan and if not, how are you going to pay this loan back?

 CBS News did a blathering piece a few weeks ago on the student loan debt crisis.  It featured a man who had $80,000 in student loan debt and had graduated with a degree in women’s studies.  He had no job and no prospect of paying his loans back.

 This is the problem with the guarantees.  What bank would loan money for someone to get a degree in something as useless as women’s studies if the government did not guarantee the loans?   Women’s studies is probably the second most useless and unemployable major right after “Peace studies.”

 The guarantees block some reasonable questions that students themselves should be asking.  For example, why would you borrow $200,000 to get educated in a field like social work, where you are only going to be paid $30,000 a year?   If you are going to borrow $200,000 to become a doctor, that is one thing as you will have the income at some point to pay those loans down.

 Parents bear a lot of the responsibility for the student loan crisis.  First, they should know better and should warn their kids that these massive loans have to be paid back.   Part of the American dream now is to send your kids to college.  This is a good thing and higher education should be strongly encouraged.  However, not everyone is ready at 18 to go to a university. 

 For some kids, they are better off working for a couple of years or doing a tour in the military and then coming to college when they are 21 and have a clue what they are doing.

 We have a massive student loan debt problem.  We can thank the government for stupid policies that have created the problem.   The answer is not throwing more money at student loans. 

 The answer is some personal responsibility.

 Perhaps a college somewhere should start offering a degree in personal responsibility.   It would certainly be worth more than many of the degrees these schools currently offer.

A Failing Grade for America’s Educational System – Tea Party Nation

A Failing Grade for America’s Educational System – Tea Party Nation.

By Alan Caruba

Back in 2001 I wrote a four-part series on “The Subversion of Education in America” and more than a decade later not much has improved. The causes are easily identified. One is federal control and the other is the National Education Association (NEA) which, despite its name, is a union.

Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey became a nationally known figure when he took on the teacher’s union for the way contracts with generous pension and health benefits were bankrupting the State. Other civil service contracts also came under review for the same reason.

A recent headline in The Wall Street Journal caught my eye. “No-Child Law Faces Wave of Opt-Outs” reported that “Twenty-six more states asked to be excused from key requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act, an exemption that would curb the education law’s impact considerably.” If the Obama administration grants waivers to all the new applicants, three quarters of the states would be exempt.

The federal Department of Education is a legacy of the failed Carter administration, signed into law on October 17, 1979 and given Cabinet level status. Generally speaking, the NEA made sure it was run to suit its purposes, not that of parents and students.

The best thing a new President and Congress could do for America would be to eliminate the DOE, returning the oversight of educational systems to the States. Clearly, when three quarters of them want out from the No Child program, something is very wrong with it.

Indeed, what is wrong is the notion that education is a one-size-fits-all proposition. Any parent and any teacher can tell you that children individually learn at different rates, have individual strengths and weaknesses that require something other than a federal straight-jacket. No Child is a legacy of the Bush43 administration; proof that no matter who’s in charge, education should not be a federal department.

What the federal government does is redistribute money and at a time when it is broke the notion of spending billions it does not have begs the question of who gets to waste it.

In 2010, the government “invested” $3.5 billion “in an effort to fix the nation’s bottom five percent of public schools and in 2011 it spent another $546 million through the School Improvement Grant (SIG) program. The funds were available to schools that were “eligible for up to an unprecedented $6 million per school over a three-year period to implement one of four reform models.”

Don’t expect much. It has been known for decades that schools in highly segregated, low-income, urban areas; those with more than half of their students representing African-American and Latino populations are the ones in trouble. Their problems are, as often as not, related to cultural attitudes and language difficulties. The student’s problems begin in their homes and transfer into the classrooms.

Minimum Security Prisons

Our schools have been turned into minimum security prisons with increasingly intrusive policies regarding every aspect of student’s lives, from the lunch they bring to school to proposed intervention in their lives off campus. Pre-school programs, often mandatory, have a long history of failure. Parents are under pressure to transfer their control over the lives of their children to schools. It is authoritarian. It is un-American.

So what was deemed an important DOE priority in 2011? Last year it was crowing about its “Green Ribbon Schools” program “to recognize schools that have taken great strides in greening their curricula, buildings, school grounds and overall building operations.” Slapping some solar panels on the roofs of schools does nothing to improve the quality of teaching and learning in the classrooms below.

As for curricula, it just means more indoctrination regarding phony environmental claims about global warming, melting ice caps, endangered species and other specious science. In April, new so-called science standards from the National Research Council will require students be taught the usual Al Gore version of climate change.

The NEA wants you to know that “the teaching profession has changed dramatically over the past fifty years.” That’s why it is sponsoring National Teacher Day on May 3rd. Astonishingly, the NEA admits that “45% of new teachers abandon the profession in their first five years”; apparently without understanding why.

Part of the answer is the poor quality of education they receive at the university level to prepare them to teach. Part of the answer, as the NEA notes, has to do with the “nearly one-quarter of school districts (that) do not require new teachers to have certification for what they are teaching.” Part of the answer is the union requirement involving tenure, making it nearly impossible to fire an incompetant teacher.

How bad are our nation’s schools despite the federal largess and their “greening”? In a report issued in February, the National Center for Policy Analysis, “Restructuring Public Education for the 21st Century”, noted that “Students in dozens of other countries, including China, South Korea, Germany and Finland, outperformed American students in reading, math, and science, according to the Program for International Student Assessment in 2010.

“The United States ranked 23rd in science, 17th in reading, and—worst of all—31st in math.” The dropout rate nationwide wavers between 30 percent and 40 percent with urban center dropout rates as high as 80 percent.

As for those who do graduate, some 76 percent, those who go onto a college education as often as not must first take remedial courses to bring them to a level where they can begin to acquire a higher education.

What happens then? According to the Center for College Affordability and Productivity, “61 percent of folks with a student loan are not paying” whether they are in school or have graduated. That adds up to an $870 billion outstanding balance, akin in ways to the nation’s mortgage crisis. Will public funds be tapped to “bail out” colleges and universities? Probably.

The nation’s educational systems are imploding from pre-school to kindergarten, elementary to middle to high school. Entire generations are either dropping out or graduating without the skill levels to compete in a world where students in other nations are learning how to run circles around their American counterparts.

© Alan Caruba, 2012

Teachers Union President Deems Education Too Complex for Tax-Paying Rubes – Kyle Olson – Townhall Conservative

Teachers Union President Deems Education Too Complex for Tax-Paying Rubes – Kyle Olson – Townhall Conservative.

It’s so reassuring to have the intellectual elites in our nation’s teachers unions, like Sandy Hughes of Tennessee, looking out for us rubes.

Hughes, a local union president, is pitching the idea that school board membership be limited to people who “have worked in the education field,” because the issues at hand are “so complex” and too complicated for average citizens.

In other words, all will be well if taxpayers just get out of the way and let the wise and wonderful union folks run our schools, no questions asked. All we have to do is keep paying the taxes, then mind our own business.

This is a perfect example of the snobbery and arrogance that is so pervasive in the public education establishment.

A stay-at-home mom that wants to be on the board? Sorry. Business owners who know how to control labor costs and balance budgets? They don’t have the right skill set, according to Hughes. Public education is too “complex” for them.

Hughes didn’t happen to mention the 80% graduation rate in her county, the 52% of 3-8 graders who aren’t proficient in reading or the 62% who aren’t proficient in math. Perhaps she thinks those statistics are acceptable, and the public school accept them, too.

There’s another issue at play here. Most communities throughout the nation elect school board members. Teachers unions throughout the nation provide millions of dollars in campaign contributions to get their hand-picked candidates elected, then lo and behold, they negotiate juicy, expensive contracts with their pet board members.

Union leaders have clearly thought this through. Some have actually produced How-To manuals, such as the Michigan Education Association’s “Electing Your Employer – It’s as easy as 1-2-3!” In it, the union details every step necessary to elect union-friendly school board members.

The only problem is that, with a board full of union supporters, nobody is looking out for the interests of students and taxpayers. But of course, people who aren’t dedicated to the union agenda have no business on school boards, according to Hughes. We obviously don’t understand the process. It’s all too “complex” for us.

Florida Teacher’s Union Sues over Merit Pay – Tea Party Nation

Service Employees International Union

Image via Wikipedia

Florida Teacher’s Union Sues over Merit Pay – Tea Party Nation.

Posted by Dr. Rich Swier

If teacher’s do not want to be paid based on merit, then what do they want to be paid for? Teachers hold their students accountable and promote them to the next grade level based upon merit, don’t they?

Why shouldn’t teachers be evaluated and paid based on merit?

According to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, “Sarasota teachers joined with the statewide teacher’s union Wednesday in legal action against a new law that links teacher pay to student performance and ends tenure for new teachers.”

What this is all about is collective bargaining.

Now here is an interesting statement from Christine Mayer, a Sarasota elementary school teacher, “I’m there to teach the child. They’re there to learn. Now I have yet more hoops that I have to jump through that violate my constitutional rights.” It appears Christine does not know what is in the U.S. Constitution or the Florida Constitution. There is no constitutional right to not being evaluated, nor to have collective bargaining. The Florida legislature can give and take away collective bargaining, as was done in Wisconsin.

This lawsuit is to try to get the courts to keep unions in power, a secondary issue teacher’s being held accountable. When political pressure fails then sue and hope the courts rule in your favor. I know, you union members are thinking let’s have every government worker’s union sue to not be held accountable for their job performance. But wait that is already embedded in NEA, AFT and SEIU negotiated contracts.

Samuel L. Blumenfeld, in his book “Is Public Education Necessary?“, lists five myths about public education:

Myth 1: Public education is a great democratic institution fundamental to America’s prosperity and well-being.

Myth 2: Public education is necessary as the great equalizer in our society, bringing together children from different ethnic, social, racial, and religious groups and molding them into homogenized Americans – which we are all supposed to want to be.

Myth 3: Public education provides the best possible education because we are the best possible country spending the most possible money.

Myth 4: Neighborhood schools with its cadre of dedicated teachers and administrators belongs to the community and is answerable to it through an elected school board.

Myth 5: Our society cannot survive without it – that is, public education and all the people who run it.

Experience has shown us these are truly myths. According to Justin Pope, education writer for the Associated Press, “SAT reading scores for the high school class of 2011 were the lowest on record, and combined reading and math scores fell to their lowest point since 1995.

Wayne Camara, College Board vice president of research, said recent curriculum reforms that pushed math instruction may be coming at the expense of reading and writing — especially in an era when students are reading less and less at home. We’re looking and wondering if [more] efforts in English and reading and writing would benefit” students.”

I believe in an educated public, however, I have lost confidence in our public education system. Especially when I see teacher’s unions not wanting teacher to be evaluated on their merit. Parents, teachers and students must come first, not unions.