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

Sunday, January 31, 2021

Red State Governors Pick Up Where DeVos Left Off, Part 1

It's easy to make a case that Donald Trump was the least informed, least effective, and most racist President since Woodrow Wilson. And it is even easier to do same for his "utterly unqualified" Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos.

Now that a competent and less racist Administration has saved the Nation from international shame and a domestic nervous breakdown, it is up to red state governors to push forward with the kinds of cruel, bigoted, corrupt, and Christian fascist initiatives that DeVos's hedge fund social planners pushed forward to gain the slimy seal of approval from the criminally-degenerate Trump.

Take Iowa, for instance, where Trump loyalist, Gov. Kim Reynolds, along with the Trumper legislature, is seeking to expand school privatization with publicly-funded "scholarships," i. e., schools vouchers, and a new state charter school law.  The legislation would also expand textbook tax credits, which will provide more private school and home school indoctrination materials for K-12 students who don't attend Iowa's historically-great public schools.
The State of Iowa also plans to make sure that public schools do not teach the social, political, and economic history of slavery in America, a subject that has never been adequately presented in standard school texts--and certainly not in the conservative doctrinaire curriculum now used in many of the Trump-loving "Christian" schools that operate with public financing. 

Specifically, the proposed legislation cancels the use of a history curriculum, the 1619 Project, developed by Iowa native and Pulitzer Prize winning investigative journalist, Nikole Hannah-Jones.  The 1619 Project essays have been rolled into a curriculum project made available by the Pulitzer Center and are free to the thousands of schools in the U.S. that now use the materials.  
Even so, the Iowa Trumpers plan to withhold education funds from any school that uses the materials from the 1619 Project:
NEW SUBSECTION . 5A. A school shall not utilize any United States history curriculum that in whole or in part is derived from a project by the New York Times, known as the “1619 Project”, or any similarly developed curriculum.
In a recent report on the textbooks that are widely used in much of red state America, education reporter, Rebecca Klein, noted:
. . . a 2017 HuffPost investigation found that about one-third of Christian schools participating in private school choice programs used a curriculum created by these two publishers [BJU Press and Abeka] or a similar company called Accelerated Christian Education, amounting to around 2,400 schools. The number of schools using these company’s products that do not participate in a voucher program likely amounts to thousands more. (Voucher programs allow students to use taxpayer funds to attend private schools.)

If all this were not enough to boost her white pride polling numbers, Reynolds and her legislative counterparts want to do what they can to reestablish segregation in schools by allowing students "to transfer out of schools with a voluntary or court-ordered diversity plan."

Part 2 will have a look at what's going on in SC and TN school politics to alleviate the fears of white nationalists.

No comments:

Post a Comment