Ohio’s Education Woes

By Bob Lattimer

On June 4, 2014, the Ohio General Assembly passed Am. Sub. H.B. 487, an education budget correction bill. The bill contains a provision that states“When the state board [of education] adopts or revises academic content standards in social studies, American history, American government, or science … the state board shall develop such standards independently and not as part of a multistate consortium.” This in effect disallows the state from adopting the Next Generation Science Standards (NGGS), as well as any future multistate standards in social studies. In passing H.B. 487, Ohio asserts its right to formulate its own K-12 education standards.

H.B. 487 also establishes “academic standards review committees” in four areas – English language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies. These committees are to review existing or proposed standards and statewide assessments for their appropriateness. Unfortunately, these seven-member committees will likely be highly political in nature, since the members are appointed by the governor, Senate President, House Speaker, state Superintendent, and Chancellor of the Board of Regents.

The legislature has also been concerned about a strong anti-Common Core movement in Ohio. In an attempt to ameliorate parents opposed to Common Core English and math standards, H.B. 487 contains a provision for each school district to establish a “parental advisory committee” or other method to review textbooks and other instructional materials. This requirement is unlikely to have much effect, however, since (a) most districts already have such a review process, (b) parental reviews seldom have much influence on selection of curricular materials, (c) districts are essentially forced to adopt instructional materials that are aligned with the state assessments, and (d) concern about Common Core goes much deeper than just textbook selection.

A strong anti-Common Core bill, H.B. 237, was introduced in mid-2013 by Ohio State Rep. Andy Thompson. This bill would effectively eliminate Common Core standards in the state, withdraw the state from the PARCC consortium, and institute measures to protect students and families from intrusive data collection. H.B. 237 has been stalled in the House Education Committee, due to the intransigence of committee Chairman Gerald Stebelton and House Speaker Bill Batchelder. The legislature is in recess until after the November election. There will be a short session at the end of the year during which the bill may still be considered.

On June 4, 2014, Rep. John Adams, Assistant Majority Floor Leader, announced that a “discharge petition” would be circulated to try to get H.B. 237 moving in the House. The discharge petition is a little used measure designed to address stalemates such as that engendered by H.B. 237. If a majority of House members (50 out of 99) sign the petition, the bill must be brought to the House floor for a vote. Rep. Adams and Rep. Thompson hope to gain the necessary signatures by November so that this important bill, with much grassroots support, can move forward.

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The Liberal War on Homeschooling

The Progressive War On Homeschooling

Written by: Tara Dodrill Politics June 4, 2013 0

Homeschooling families are the latest to become the target of the liberal attack on individual liberties. Millions of folks once legally immigrated to America because of the multitude of freedoms which were drafted into the Constitution by our Founding Fathers. Today, millions of people still come across the border, but to partake in the benefits of an increasing socialistic society where personal liberties are being squashed at an alarming rate.

Progressives have been fighting the rights of parents to educate their children at home since the early years of the 20th century. The fight to keep children under government control and within the public school system has not ebbed. The liberal dislike of homeschooling was quite evident in the Romeike case. As previously noted byOff the Grid News, the legal immigrants from Germany were granted asylum in the United States, only to have it yanked away by the Obama administration.

The couple would likely lose custody of their six children if sent back to Germany where homeschooling was ruled illegal by Adolf Hitler (the law has never been changed). Uwe and Hannelore Romeike are a deeply religious couple who want to govern how their children learn and be the primary influence in their lives. The Romeike family, like many Americans, consider religious freedom and the ability to parent extremely important, but Eric Holder and President Obama appear to vehemently disagree.

A 2010 report by the National Home Education Research Institute revealed that nearly 2 million students were educated at home. The homeschool community reportedly grows by 2 percent to 8 percent on average every year. The increased desire to opt out of the public education system is bad news for unions, and quite realistically, the primary reason why the Obama administration does not want to set a precedent in the Romeike case. When children are educated at home, they cannot be indoctrinated with a liberal mindset (unless the parents so choose) and therefore another possible reason behind the far-left’s continued opposition to homeschooling.

Liberals simply cannot dispute the effectiveness of homeschooling on academic grounds. A recent report citing educational statistics compiled by The Blaze Assistant Editor Sharon Ambrose clearly illustrates the academic prowess of homeschooled students. An academic achievement test scores comparison chart shows that homeschooled students score between the 84th and 89th percentile in all core subjects – public school students average in the 50th percentile across the board.

The Harding family was recently featured on Fox and Friends. The retired military father and his stay-at-home wife homeschool their ten children, six of which entered college at age 12. The eldest daughter recently became the youngest doctor in the United States—she is 22. The Harding family plans to send the remaining youngsters to college before they become teenagers as well. The children are not geniuses and the parents told Fox viewers that all children can obtain similar academic success via a quality homeschool curriculum.

Even though homeschool success rates continue to soar, many states strictly regulate and dismiss parental requests to leave the public school system. Just 11 states allow parents to homeschool their children without any type of formal notification process. A total of 13 states require parents to simply notify the state of the decision to homeschool before nixing the idea of publication education. All but one of such states is located in the West and in the South.

New Manual Gives College Students A Huge Advantage Over Their Peers

The majority of states with either moderate or high regulation of homeschooling are along the East Coast. Not surprisingly, the states which place the most hurdles in front of parents are union and Democrat strongholds.

The homeschooling movement began to take shape during the 1970s. Liberals who wanted to escape the constraints of society moved onto communes and conservative families concerned about infusing morality into the educational process began teaching their children at home during this era. Although both groups approached homeschooling from entirely different perspectives, they collectively laid the groundwork for the burgeoning academic alternatives available today.

As is often par for the course, the allegedly tolerant left viciously attacks parents who choose to homeschool their children. During the 2012 Presidential campaign, Bill Maher had this to say about Rick Santorum’s decision to teach his children at home:

“Rick Santorum homeschools his children because he does not want them eating that f*****g apple. He wants them locked up in the Christian madrassa that is the family living room, not out in the public where they could be infected by the virus of reason.”

The concept of reason must be apparently twisted into an unrecognizable definition when processed via a liberal mind. The Harding family is a perfect example of why the seclusionary stereotype is inaccurate. Parents afraid to have their children influenced at all by the outside world would surely not send their preteens onto a college campus.

New Republic writer Leon Wieseltier considers homeschooling a demented idea and chastises parents who feel they are qualified to teach their own children while “keeping them from the world.”

Hundreds of thousands of homeschool students are mingling with their public school peers in scouting programs, 4-H, dance classes—the list could go on and on. Off-grid and homesteading families living far from traditional communities likely cannot organize such activities frequently, but that does not mean they are raising feral children shielded entirely from society either.

Dana Goldstein of Slate wrote an article entitled, “Liberals, Don’t Homeschool Your Kids: Why Teaching Children at Home Violates Progressive Values.” Goldstein said this in her pro-progressive education piece:

“Government is the only institution with the power and scale to intervene in the massive undertaking of better educating American children.”

Hmmm … I don’t recall the Founding Fathers putting either such a mandate or such confidence in the government to do any such thing. George Washington University Law professor Catherine Ross had this to say in her anti-homeschooling academic article:

“The state can and should limit the ability of intolerant home-schoolers to inculcate hostility to difference in their children.”

The left’s push to demonize homeschooling parents and push for more government control of youth extends to Emory University law professor Martha Albertson as well. An excerpt from Albertson’s article on the subject reads:

“The risk that parents or private schools unfairly impose hierarchical or oppressive beliefs on their children is magnified by the absence of state oversight or the application of any particular educational standards. The more appropriate suggestion for our current educational dilemma is that public education should be mandatory and universal.”

The most common reasons parents listed for opting to homeschool, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, include the desire to offer moral or religious instruction, concerns about the safety of the school environment, subpar public school academic instruction, distance from school, and a desire to offer a non-traditional approach to learning. Demographics statistics note that 77 percent of homeschooled students are white and 89 percent of such students come from a two-parent home. The most recent statistics offered by the national center date back to 2007.

Read Founding Fathers Christian principles in education, government, and the public affairs of the nation.

My daughter went to an amazing elementary school. The rural educational facility offered a well-rounded curriculum and did not “teach to the test.” Teachers were still permitted to inspire their students with fun, yet educational, hands-on extension activities, field trips, and experiments. The middle school experience was slightly less stellar. Half of the teachers were dedicated and actively engaged with the students, but the other half sat behind their desks and used ditto sheets to introduce academic material. The principal was a retired Marine, who kept the facility safe and demanded a professional demeanor from staff and respect from the students.

The downward public educational spiral began for us during the high school years. My daughter was a good student involved in extra-curricular sports and clubs. Once again, there were some awesome teachers, but the ones who did not fall into that category left a whole lot to be desired. Fights occurred weekly, drug use and heavy partying became the norm, even among students who were equally good students and involved in positive activities. I heard likable and educated educators using phrases such as “I seen,” and “I haven’t ate yet.” Two teachers from the high school (one male and one female) had sexual affairs with students—one went to prison and the other quietly resigned and went to a juvenile detention facility to teach a whole classroom full of potential victims.

By the middle of my daughter’s junior year, we decided to make a change. She began attending an online charter school. She finished all of her remaining high school courses by the end of the same academic year (and the charter school had more requirements for graduation than the public school). During summer break, she began taking dual credit college courses. She spent her entire senior year on the college campus. By the time she technically graduated a few weeks ago, she had a year and a half of an Associate’s Degree completed at no cost. In Ohio, the PSEO program allows students who meet the academic threshold to take dual and full credit college courses at no cost, books and fees included. With such a wonderful program in existence, one would think more parents would take advantage of the college option, but they do not. Public schools do little to nothing to promote the PSEO program because allotted tax dollars for the child’s education follow them to the college.

The institutions of higher learning offer courses at a discounted rate to be approved for the PSEO program. Students who are unable to drive the 35 miles required to reach the nearest college campus are often refused approval by their host school to take online classes. The reasons for the refusals vary, but typically involve reluctance by schools to believe the students are responsible enough to keep up with online classes. All students have at least one study hall, a perfect time to send students to the library to participate in a supervised online learning experience.

American parents who want their children to be exposed to more than the lowest common denominator educational experience offered by most public schools should continue to have the right to homeschool or select an online charter experience.

How do you feel about homeschooling and the liberal opposition to the academic alternative?



Exploring the Origins of the Common Core

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Diane Ravitch's blog

Jim Martinez decided to research the sources of the Common Core State Standards. Given their importance as a redesign of the nation’s highly decentralized education system, we can expect to see many more such efforts to understand the origins of this important document.

“Engaging the nonsense – a brief investigation of the Common Core”

A teacher asked me where the Common Core came from, another suggested that I “teach” the Common Core in my Master’s degree level courses.

So my curiosity got the best of me and I spent some time understanding something about Common Core from my perspective as a scholar and educator.

My first discovery is that the Common Core is a political document. That may seem fairly obvious, but what I mean is that there is an identifiable political ideology and history that has contributed greatly to the current document. I’ve attached a link to document that…

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Public Education or Liberal Indoctrination?

At the rate things are going, only the God-fearing, Patriotic people, who are educated in a non-public school of learning will have the knowledge of any given truth about any given subject.  The textbooks used in the classrooms of America and the World college-text-on-president-bush have,  been edited to promote a liberal biased indoctrination of progressive socialism.  Heroes of our great Nation have either been given little attention in history books of today, or the information is skewed to show an unfavorable light upon the person.  Instead, the students are being subjected to personages such as Marilyn Monroe, Jane Fonda, and Jesse Jackson.  Gone are the days when students graduate with the knowledge of the unadulterated truth about our Nation’s Christian heritage, let alone the plight of countries which fought to stamp out evil rulers.  Those students who are fortunate to be trained and educated in Home schools or Biblical based Christian schools will more than likely be the remnant that know the truth about anything.  It stands to reason that since the world has rejected the ultimate truth, the Lord Jesus Christ; the Living Word; it will and has rejected all truth. Try as they have, the one history book that the socialists cannot eradicate is the King James Bible.

Within the pages of the Living Word is a history of the past, present and future of the world.  God has not only recorded 5214203-holy-bible-open-to-the-book-of-daniel-with-white-vignette-giving-the-image-a-clean-heavenly-feelfor us the mighty battles that have taken place in the past and the ones that will take place in the future, but also the answers of  the mysteries of all the sciences in the World.  Many discoveries in the realm of archeology, biology, meteorology, and all of the other ‘ologies’  have been attributed to the studying of scripture.  Yet this divinely inspired Encyclopedia is banned from secular schools.  One cannot fully comprehend the events taking place in today’s world without studying the scriptures of the Old Testament Prophets.  The Books of Ezekiel and Daniel are magnificent resources for learning about the past, present and future events that have, are, and will be taking place.  However, the final chapter in the History of the World is in the Book of Revelation.  What a blessing it is to watch Biblical prophecy unfolding before our very eyes.  The world’ s children have no clue,  because the god of their world has blinded their eyes to the Truth.

As God-fearing Bible believing, blood-bought Parents and Grandparents, it behooves us to make a concentrated effort to tumblr_lkqmnbnrr21qgeswwo1_500  dad reading bibloeshare not only the historical and ‘scientific’ truths from the Living Word, but also the amazing story of redemption.  For God did so love the World, that He did give his only Begotten Son to die on Calvary, from sin to set us free.  One day He is coming back………….what glory that will be!