"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Monday, June 07, 2010

The Charter School Reality: Free to Indoctrinate at Public Expense

Sharon Higgins continues digging into the chain of tax-supported missionary schools operated by Turkish nationalists who are disciples of Fetullah Gülen

Who could have guessed that when oversight and regulations are removed from schools spending public money that there are groups outside the officially sanctioned Oligarchy of Gates and Broad that have their own preferred indoctrination agendas? Just the cost of doing business, so they say.  A clip from Charter School Scandals:
Similar school features are described in "Central Asia: Fetullah Gülen's Missionary Schools" by Bayram Balci (2002). This piece was published in a newsletter produced by the International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World (ISIM) at Leiden University (Netherlands).
Here are some excerpts:
  • “The movement obtains much of its support from young urban men, especially doctors, academics and other professionals.”
  • “These schools can be said to focus on modem [robotics] and scientific education. Religious matters are completely absent from their curricula.”
  • “The movement's schools are managed by Turkish and national administrators and teachers.”
As far as the religious mission of the schools goes, Balci further explains:
  • “His [Gülen's] community, or cemaat, is designated as the Fethullahci movement, alhough [sic] its members do not appreciate this term. Basically, Fethullah Gülen's ideas serve to accomplish three intellectual goals: the islamization of the Turkish nationalist ideology; the turkification of Islam; and the Islamization of modernity.”
  • “No one knows exactly the size of Gülen's enormous community of followers and sympathizers, but most agree on an average es­timate of 3 million members…The movement has grown in part by sponsoring student dormitories, summer camps, colleges, universities, classrooms and communication organizations.”
  • “…Nurcu missionaries never openly or directly proselytize.”
  • “Their hocaefendi, or "respected lord", Gülen advocates two main ways of spreading Islam, tebligh and temsil.”
  • “They are not allowed to pronounce the name of Gülen or Nursi, nor are they permitted to spread Nurcu literature, at least not openly.”
  • “…the most important aim of the cemaat is to spread the message without expressing it directly.”
For more extensive information, read “Fethullah Gülen’s Missionary Schools in Central Asia and their Role in the Spreading of Turkism and Islam,” Balci’s 27-page article which appeared in Religion, State & Society (Vol. 31, No. 2, 2003).

1 comment:

  1. Relevant op-ed by Susan Jacoby on the issue of publicly funded religious charter schools here in the U.S. ---http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/spirited_atheist/2010/05/public_charter_schools_culturally_divisive_and_academically_unsound.html

    an excerpt--

    ......"What an utter misuse of American time, ingenuity and energy to create new, semi-private schools that waste our tax money, often unconstitutionally but always unwisely, by teaching children about the founding myths of Christianity or the glories of ancient Israel. We should not be rejecting but building on the heritage of a public school system that, from the mid-nineteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries, was--in spite of its many shortcomings--a model of how to educate and assimilate millions of immigrant children who would have had no access to a free education had their parents remained in their native lands."