Posts Tagged ‘Alpine School District’
Is your child’s teacher telling you he/she uses Scott-Foresman in the classroom? Are you sure that’s true? Remember a couple years ago when Tim Osborn was running for re-election to the school board and a principal said to Tim and others that they teach what they want at school and send home the times tables to “placate the parents?” Have you wondered if your child was being taught what you expected or had been told?
Last week on Facebook I was alerted to a post by Robin Allred, a former member of Alpine School District’s District Community Council, and someone who ran to be on the ASD school board 2 years ago against Paula Hill. With Robin’s full permission I give you her comment.
“Charlotte, here’s the thing. When I was running for the school board and I got email from Oak Norton and friends I really didn’t believe their claims. I thought they were exaggerated, and I thought they were scare tactics, but I was determined to really do my homework, and to respect the opinions of others and gain some understanding of their position. As I researched more deeply I found out that there was validity to their claims. It took a lot for me to swallow my pride and admit that, but I did indeed have a teacher tell me that she wasn’t supposed to teach the times tables and I heard another teacher tell me and a whole room full of teachers that she used CMP2, but told the parents of her students that she used Scott-Foresman. I don’t mind the use of Investigations as a supplement. I think the district’s balanced math policy would be okay if it were followed, and in some places it is, but it concerns me that anywhere in this district we have teachers lying to parents, or otherwise intentionally deceiving them. It concerns me that we have teachers who feel like they have to hide traditional math in a school using investigations as their primary text. The divisiveness concerns me.”
Obviously this isn’t implying that every teacher or administrator or school has these problems, but they are there and they are not being checked. This is a leadership issue and it goes right to the head of the district. When the math curriculum was “switched out” a few years ago during the move to Scott-Foresman, the week before school started that year, Elementary school teachers around the district discovered someone had put an Investigations math textbook on their desks for their use. The signal given to them by the administration was obvious. Teacher training continues to be constructivist oriented and so teaching continues in that style.
Those wishing to run for the school board to bring in new leadership must register starting tomorrow, March 9th, through the 15th at the county offices in Provo. You can find information here:
I have notified the county that their maps aren’t pulling up correctly for ASD, and they will hopefully have the issue resolved today, but here’s the short of it.
Seats available are in precincts 4, 6, and 7.
With redistricting, Lehi has their own brand new seat which someone can run for without an incumbent. This will be known as precinct 6 for the election.
Precinct 4 is currently occupied by Mark Clement and covers Lindon, PG, and the North Orem area.
Precinct 7 is currently occupied by both Debbie Taylor and Terry Peterson after redistricting and covers the East Orem area.
If you want to run or encourage someone else to run, they must register by the 15th at the county office in Provo.
I recently posted a question on a Facebook group page asking people to consider why Karl Marx included free public education in his 10 planks of the Communist Manifesto. Someone soon came along and posted this:
“Please attempt to have a discussion about education that does not use comparisons to communism and/or Karl Marx. Attempting to demonize opposing views just shows a complete lack of desire to have civil dialog.”
“Who is demonizing…? Are you saying people who discuss education must stick their head in the sand and avoid some of the elephants in the room? Why can’t a person bring up an obvious point and have it considered rationally without being accused of demonizing?”
I thought the purpose of critical thinking skills that educators always talk about is being able to dissect and understand a topic by honest questioning. So why did Karl Marx include free public education as one of his 10 planks?
To understand this, one has to understand the foundation of the Manifesto’s goal. Marx wrote the Communist Manifesto to lay out a plan for the destruction of private property. Only with the destruction of private property can you have a communist way of life. From H. Verlan Anderson’s book, “Many are Called, but Few are Chosen,” we read this explanation:
“Not only does the Manifesto declare its main purpose to be the destruction of private property, but it contains a detailed plan by which this is to be accomplished in a nation such as the United States whose laws and constitutions were designed to protect this right.
The method proposed is not violent and bloody revolution (at least at the outset) but the peaceful and legal process of inducing the citizens of the United States and other nations to destroy the right themselves with their own legislatures, courts, and executives. We are to adopt a series of laws which will inevitably have this result. Listen to the Manifesto as it unfolds its plan:
‘We have seen above that the first step in the revolution by the working class is to raise the proletariat to the position of ruling class, to establish democracy. The proletariat will use its political supremacy to wrest by degrees all capital from the bourgeoisie (property owners), to centralize all instruments of production in the hands of the state.’
This naked appeal to the selfishness of the voter to use the government as an instrument of plunder is nothing but a proposal for legalized theft.”
The reason the communists promote Democracy is because once you establish class warfare to the point that the majority vote themselves property from the minority, the destruction of private property is ensured. The people will continue to vote socialist minded people into office to pass laws guaranteeing for themselves anything they desire. This is where we find the quote often attributed to Alexander Tytler so applicable.
“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship.”
Can anyone argue we don’t have loose fiscal policy and we’re not headed for a dictatorship? If you don’t believe it, you’re not watching the mandates and sidestepping of the legislative process the President is engaged in.
So now why did Karl Marx declare free public education in government schools as one of his 10 main objectives to destroy private property? Here are three reasons I can think of.
1) Getting people without children to pay for the education of people with children, via compulsory taxation, takes the personal property of those who may not want to or be able to give, in order to pay for a good or service for someone else. This is a tremendous injustice to those without children. Parents, never having to write a check or make a payment for the service, cease to concern themselves with what their child is being taught or if waste is occurring in the system. There is no competition, just apathy. Some will say that paying for the education of other children is for the benefit of society, however, one could say that about almost anything. It never used to be this way till Marx and Horace Mann came along and got us into this model.
2) In a state school funded with public tax dollars, the lowest common denominator prevails meaning those who believe least (atheism) trump those who believe most (in God). Free government education is a way to destroy public morality and a belief in God, which was one of Marx’s goals to establish atheism. Our Christian founders wanted to have strong morals taught in schools from the Bible. Not sectarian beliefs, but morals grounded in God’s commandments which ultimately lead to the happiness of the people.
3) It removes from parents the authority and responsibility of being the primary educator of their children. The state takes an interest and with government money paying for the education, the government can create mandates on everything in the system including curriculum, testing, standards, teachers, administrators, etc… Parents lose the ability to control their child’s education.
Until parents directly pay for at least a portion of their child’s education, they will never take an interest in how funds are being spent and what their children are being taught.
From the Latter-Day Conservative website I got this excellent quote.
“God finds His glory, as Joseph Smith said, in providing laws by which other beings can come to enjoy the same perfections and glory He possesses. Our view and motivations should be the same. Rather than seeing law as an instrument of domination, it is our mission to use it as an enabling power to help men and women achieve greater independence and ultimate potential. We do so by acting to have our earthly governmental and legal systems mirror as closely as possible the divine order. – ”
(“Law and Becoming”, Elder D. Todd Christoffersons. Fireside presented to the J. Reuben Clark Law Society, February 4, 2011. Published in the Clark Memorandum, Spring 2011.)
What is the divine order? It is founded upon the principle of agency, or choice. One must choose to become educated. One must choose to be charitable. One should be able to choose the educational environment for their children. Government run public schools funded by tax dollars, forcing children to learn what the state tells them and in the manner in which they tell them, is a factory conveyor belt model for things that are to be acted upon like a raw material, not a place for sentient beings that need to learn to act and use choice or agency to put themselves into motion to accomplish great things. When responsibility is removed from people, even in education, apathy sets in and we become nothing more than drones. Parents and children should be active participants in the education process. When they are not, they relinquish their right to agency and personal growth.
What the “Occupy Wall Street” Democracy-lovers would do to us today is destroy private property in the name of immoral corporations. However, the problem isn’t with capitalism, it’s with morality. Our Founders said only a moral and religious people could maintain a free republic. With each action of government in removing God and religion in our daily lives, individuals have lost their moral anchor and believe they can take advantage of their neighbors to get ahead without any consequences. The problems in Wall Street, Washington, and everywhere else won’t be solved by more laws that force people into good behavior. New laws are the result of lost morals because everyone wants to clamp down on bad behavior. The solution to society’s ills can only be found in a return to God-centered morals. Only then will people treat each other with honesty and charity and cease taking advantage of each other through dishonest business practices, or plunder made legal through our process of lawmaking.
Perhaps the best statement I’ve read explaining this is from Howard W. Hunter, a past president of the LDS church, who said:
“What is the real cause of this trend toward the welfare state, toward more socialism? In the last analysis, in my judgment, it is personal unrighteousness. When people do not use their freedoms responsibly and righteously, they will gradually lose these freedoms . . ..
If man will not recognize the inequalities around him and voluntarily, through the gospel plan, come to the aid of his brother, he will find that through “a democratic process” he will be forced to come to the aid of his brother. The government will take from the “haves” and give to the “have nots.” Both have lost their freedom. Those who “have,” lost their freedom to give voluntarily of their own free will and in the way they desire. Those who “have not,” lost their freedom because they did not earn what they received. They got “something for nothing,” and they will neither appreciate the gift nor the giver of the gift.
Under this climate, people gradually become blind to what has happened and to the vital freedoms, which they have lost. (Speeches of the Year 1965-1966, pp. 1-11, “The Law of the Harvest.” Devotional Address, Brigham Young University, 8 March 1966.)”
Every violation of the constitution that provides a socialistic program to the public (yes, including public education), encourages the slide into the destruction of private property. The rallying cry of socialists is “Democracy” because it is through majority votes of the “have nots” that they take from the “haves” and the ongoing, systematic destruction of our economy creates more “have nots.” We must understand, respect, and defend the Constitution of the United States and honor the laws that protect our life, liberty, and property, or Democracy will be the downfall of this nation.
Hopefully this gives new perspective to why there is such a danger in our schools adopting slogans like “Enculturating the Young into a Social and Political Democracy.” This is simply a restatement of the communist goal to establish a democratic welfare state which serves to destroy morality and private property through the votes of a growing immoral majority.
BYU’s Department of Education has published their Spring 2011 edition of McKay Today Magazine and contained in this small compilation is a tribute by former dean Robert Patterson to none other than John Goodlad. Susie Schnell sent me a link to it and even though it’s an article that has been seen on BYU’s website in the past, they chose to re-emphasize their complete and utter devotion to a man who is seeking the overthrow of all that BYU supposedly stands for.
First and foremost, lets be 100% clear that John Goodlad is an anti-Christ, and in LDS terminology, we would also call him a Korihor. He is an atheist, humanist, socialist, who espouses population control, constructivist math, implementing the gay agenda in the classroom, and having teachers introduce Marxist social justice in the classroom. Goodlad invited Bill Ayers, the godless Marxist terrorist turned educator to be the keynote speaker at his NNER conference last October. None of these philosophies are worthy of BYU’s mission or standards, neither does it correspond with direct teachings from the Book of Mormon which instruct us that both our secular teachers, and ecclesiastical leaders, should be individuals who walk in God’s paths or we should not trust them.
Mosiah 23:14 “And also trust no one to be your teacher nor your minister, except he be a man of God, walking in his ways and keeping his commandments.”
The BYU Education Department’s infatuation with Goodlad is completely independent of the LDS church. The church may own the school, but once teachers have tenure their ideology comes out without much fear of retribution in spite of the poison they may subtly distribute to students who believe their teachers are only espousing God’s truths and not the philosophies of men. They embrace Goodlad’s worldly philosophies because he is nationally prominent and has bestowed honors upon them and their college of education, specifically naming two individuals (Steve Baugh and John Rosenberg) as AED Scholars (Agenda for Education in a Democracy), and working with BYU for decades within his national network.
There are three dangers that threaten the church from within, and the authorities need to awaken to the fact that the people should be warned unceasingly against them. As I see them, they are flattery of prominent men in the world, false educational ideas, and sexual impurity.
Joseph F. Smith
2 out of 3 ain’t good.
BYU’s Ed department’s embrace of Goodlad shows they have utterly failed to follow the counsel of leaders, and of their core scriptural beliefs.
Last year (2010) when BYU’s Education Department was under attack from us for being members of John Goodlad’s NNER, which was trying to force BYU to accept the gay agenda into their school, the Provo Daily Herald reported that BYU was dropping its membership with the NNER (National Network for Educational Renewal) for “financial” reasons. However, in that same article, the Herald said, “Far from divorcing themselves from Goodlad, BYU provided the Daily Herald with a summary of Goodlad’s achievements” and went on to praise and adore this prominent national educator.
So here we are one year later and some have wondered if BYU’s Education Department was possibly changing their direction. They have answered with a resounding NO.
This tribute (PDF) in their latest newsletter clearly shows where they stand. My comments are on the right. (I also suggest to BYU’s Ed Dept. that they look at the title tag they have used with Robert Patterson’s photo and correct the (Freudian?) slip where they have named him “John Godland.”)
|John Goodlad’s Influence on the BYU–Public School Partnership
By Robert Patterson
|Robert Patterson is a lifelong educator and author. He was a former dean of the McKay School of Education at Brigham Young University between 1999 and 2003, during which time he worked closely with John Goodlad.||John Goodlad has been working close with BYU’s Ed. Dept. since 1983 when he first set up the Public School Partnership between BYU and 5 surrounding school districts, and in 1986 when BYU’s Ed. Dept. became a founding member of the NNER.|
|As I participated in the various activities of the BYU–Public School Partnership (BYU–PSP), I experienced an oft-repeated query from fellow participants: “Why do we pay so much attention to the opinions and ideas of John Goodlad?” I want to offer three possible responses.||Here comes the official answer as to why BYU’s Ed. Dept. pays to much attention to John Goodlad.|
|First, I suggest we look at the professional record of this man. His colleagues have publicly acknowledged the extent and value of his work by literally showering him with prestigious awards, including the Horace Mann League Outstanding Friend of Public Education and the John Dewey Society Outstanding Achievement Award in 2009. He has tirelessly done his utmost to address educational issues in a manner to help fellow professionals as well as the larger interested public.||Reason 1: he’s a prestigious (prominent) national award winnerHorace Mann: Creator of compulsory education”What the church has been for medieval man, the public school must become for democratic and rational man. God will be replaced by the concept of the public good. The common (public) schools shall create a more far-seeing intelligence and a pure morality than has ever existed among communities of men.” -Mann
John Dewey: Original signatory on the atheistic, socialistic, Humanist Manifesto.
“Education is thus a most powerful ally of Humanism, and every American public school is a school of Humanism. What can the theistic Sunday-schools, meeting for an hour once a week, and teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of humanistic teaching?” -Dewey
Evil, godless, prominent men who have an agenda to destroy faith in God and have awards named after them and Goodlad has received them. That’s reason #1 BYU’s Ed. Dept. follows Goodlad.
|The second compelling reason relates to his role in helping to launch and enrich the organization of the Partnership. On invitation from Curtis Van Alfen, the BYU dean of education in 1983, Goodlad spent several months at BYU helping school district and university personnel catch a vision of the benefits of a collaborative relationship.||Reason 2: Goodlad did tremendous service for BYU to help them catch a vision of a collaborative relationship.What is Goodlad’s agenda?”The curriculum of the future will be what one might call the humanistic curriculum.” -Goodlad|
|Goodlad also invited the Partnership to become a member of the National Network for Educational Renewal (NNER). As a result, participants of the BYU–PSP have received outstanding leadership training as well as the opportunity to interact with school or university faculty members from other NNER sites. One result of this interaction has been the replication of the Seattle Associates Program at BYU. The Partnership has used associates as one of the main ways of sharing ideas and promoting a common value position within the BYU–PSP.||Reason 3: If you read the titles of some of the NNER conference talks, of which BYU Ed. Dept. professors regularly presented (along with Alpine School District leaders from the PSP) you’ll find intriguing topics such as these:”The Creation of a Wise and Healthy People and a Culture for Sustaining and Renewing this Populace” (Sounds eerily like the U.N.’s Agenda 21 plan)”Expert Study Panel Groups (GLBT & Community Engagement)” (I don’t think I need to comment on this one)
“School-based Mentoring: A Nurturing Approach to Improve the Educational Outcomes of Students At-risk” (This particular session was taught by a BYU prof. and when you read the brief section below, you’ll see their mentoring/nurturing approach is to supplant the parent with a nurturing teacher. Where did that come from? “Most youth still hold the same values of their parents… if we do not alter this pattern, if we don’t resocialize, our system will decay.“- John Goodlad)
“And Justice For All: Using Artificial Environments to Create Community and Teach Diversity”
“The Re-emergence of the Research School: A Model To Meet the Challenges of Education for Democracy”
Whatever happened to teachers getting trained in how to teach math, reading, and writing? These courses have NOTHING to do with educating our children and EVERYTHING to do with indoctrinating them into a “social and political Democracy.”
|Another significant and valuable application of Goodlad’s leadership is our Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling (CITES). By accepting Goodlad’s challenge to experiment with this new organizational structure, we have found ways to include other BYU colleges in the Partnership, to strengthen the in-service provisions offered for school personnel, and to generate ideas through research and program evaluation.||Reason 4: The wonderful CITES center where the application of Goodlad’s philosophies are extended to other colleges, and through which PSP school administrators and principals pass in order to be deemed “Goodlad-agenda-ready” for public service. CITES is run by Steve Baugh, Goodlad AED scholar. Baugh is the former Superintendent of Alpine School District where he helped bring constructivist math (ex. Investigations, Connected, and Interactive math) to tens of thousands of children, forever damaging their mathematical abilities, but following Goodlad’s recommendations that a socialistic style constructivist approach be used to help further prepare children for life in a social and political Democracy.CITES also receives hundreds of thousands of public tax dollars each year yet won’t allow for an audit or release of how those tax dollars are spent in spite of requests by legislators.|
|John Goodlad has encouraged and supported the BYU–PSP in powerful ways. Without the benefits derived from the focus associated with his writings and programs and the example of excellent leadership through skillful mentoring and modeling of ideas and practices, the BYU–PSP would be far less able to speak with pride of the quality of education in our partner districts and in our university teacher preparation programs. We continue to be richly rewarded for celebrating Dr. John I. Goodlad.||Quality of education in our partner districts? Is that why UVU has a math remediation *department* for the nearly 70% of incoming students who can’t do simple college algebra?Teacher prep is nothing more than indoctrination prep. There is precious little content knowledge being transmitted to those who obtain a teaching certificate, but loads of philosophical poison from Goodlad’s agenda. We need teachers who actually understand math to teach it.|
“As the educational system falls into the hands of the in-power political faction or into the hands of an obscure but tightly knit group of professional social reformers, it is used not to educate but to indoctrinate.” Ezra Taft Benson (An Enemy Hath Done this – pg. 229)
“I feel to warn you that one of the chief means of misleading our youth and destroying the family unit is our educational institutions. There is more than one reason why the Church is advising our youth to attend colleges close to their homes where institutes of religion are available. It gives the parents the opportunity to stay close to their children, and if they become alerted and informed, these parents can help expose the deceptions of men like Sigmund Freud, Charles Darwin, John Dewey, John Keynes and others. There are much worse things today that can happen to a child than not getting a full education. In fact, some of the worst things have happened to our children while attending colleges led by administrators who wink at subversion and amorality. Said Karl G. Maeser, “I would rather have my child exposed to smallpox, typhus fever, cholera or other malignant and deadly diseases than to the degrading influence of a corrupt teacher.” Ezra Taft Benson (The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p. 307.)
John Goodlad is among the “others” mentioned and a disciple of John Dewey.
“There is a spirit working among the Saints to educate their own offspring. If our children will be all we will have for a foundation of glory in eternity, how needful that they be properly trained… There are wolves among us in sheep’s clothing ready to lead astray our little ones… Wolves do not devour old sheep when there are any young ones. I have herded sheep long enough to know that. Look after your children.”- Elder John W. Taylor, (Collected Discourses 2:138.)
What Is a Mentor?
Who was your mentor? Who could be trusted to answer the important questions you had? Who was there to give you advice? Who served as a role model at important points in your life?
Most successful people have had a mentor at some time in their life, whether in business, sports, the arts, the classroom, or university work.
FiVE Things You Should Know about Mentoring
1. What a Mentor Is and What a Mentor Is Not
A mentor is not:
What a mentor is:
- a parent
- a cool peer
- a babysitter
- a therapist
- a disciplinarian
- a parole officer
- a nag
- a savior
- an ATM
- a wise and trusted friend
- a link to another generation
- a confiant
- a tutor
- an advisor
- a visionary “seer” (been there, done that)
- a cheerleader
- a coach
- a listener
- an advocate
- a sounding board
- a guide
- a role model
- a partner
- a motivator
The greatest mentor I have had in my life is my father. I wonder how the department integrates the Proclamation on the Family into their philosophies? This article further shows the embrace of Goodlad’s philosophy as he believes:
“Public education has served as a check on the power of parents, and this is another powerful reason for maintaining it.”- John Goodlad, Developing Democratic Character in the Young, pg. 165
One of Goodlad’s core 4 dimensions of teaching is that teachers become the nurturers of students. Here’s a few Goodlad quotes (references at link) for you.
“[schools] should liberate students from the ways of thinking imposed by religions and other traditions of thought.”
“…educators must resist the quest for certainty. If there were certainty there would be no scientific advancement. So it is with morals and patriotism.”
“It is my expectation that Teacher Education for Democracy and Social Justice will become a rich resource for continuing this multi-layered conversation-from democratic belief to democratic action-that is the hallmark of educational renewal.”
“…the state we should strive for is better described in Deweyan terms as a social democracy.”
I ask, do you believe the philosophies of John Goodlad will help build up Zion? I say they will not. They will tear it down and destroy it. They will indoctrinate in false philosophies and destroy faith in God. Has the BYU Ed. Dept. fallen into this cunning plan?
2 Nephi 9
28 O that cunning plan of the evil one! O the vainness, and the frailties, and the foolishness of men! When they are learned they think they are wise, and they hearken not unto the counsel of God, for they set it aside, supposing they know of themselves, wherefore, their wisdom is foolishness and it profiteth them not. And they shall perish.
29 But to be learned is good if they hearken unto the counsels of God.
What is that counsel we are to hearken to?
“We have not been using the Book of Mormon as we should. Our homes are not as strong unless we are using it to bring our children to Christ.Our families may be corrupted by worldly trends and teachings unless we know how to use the book to expose and combat the falsehoods in socialism, organic evolution, rationalism, humanism, and so forth… And our nation will continue to degenerate unless we read and heed the words of the God of this land, Jesus Christ, and quit building up and upholding the secret combinations which the Book of Mormon tells us proved the downfall of both previous American civilizations. (A Witness and a Warning, p. 6.)
Those who fail to see the dangers of an alliance with John Goodlad reject the message of the Book of Mormon and are literally walking in darkness at noon-day as they become accomplices in an effort to destroy the morality and agency of man.
David O. McKay, a staunch fighter against humanism and socialism, must be weeping in heaven that his name is attached to this department.
Kristen Shumway contacted me with a great idea recently. She lives in Alpine School District but the idea is worth sharing for other parents to get organized similarly. There are so many issues related to curriculum choice at our schools that having a body of local parents involved in this way makes a lot of sense especially if other parents at the school know about the group and can share concerns and ideas. These groups could easily become the “go-to” group for curriculum and activity choices as they become the involved parents who are most concerned with their children’s educational material. The Investigations math failure (click for new article from MD) and similar constructivist programs which Alpine School District and others continue to use K-12 continue to be shown an utter failure around the country. ASD has no studies to support the use of these programs and ignores the studies showing vastly superior programs such as Singapore, Saxon, and a few others. Parents need to mobilize at the local level and get the information out to parents in their own schools. I’m not sure if Kristen realizes the scope of what she’s sort of offered to do, but I’m so glad parents like her are getting involved.
Kristen mentions below that she will hold a meeting in her home, but I’m hopeful she’s overwhelmed with people like YOU :) wanting to do this at their own school and she’ll need a bigger meeting location.
Here is her email and contact information:
I would like to begin forming parents’ groups that would be associated with each high school, and the elementary and junior high schools that feed into it. For example, my kids go and will go to PGHS. I would like to start a group that could discuss the district issues, national tests, etc. per high school and its feeder-schools. (According to a friend of mine, school districts on the East Coast are usually set up this way.)
I am hoping that by creating parent groups per high school we could create nascient “school board training groups” where parents could get educated, practice their skills, and exercise their voices on behalf of the people they care about most–their own children. Over time, if this idea takes off, these groups could start pushing for change on local levels, be elected to boards, and hopefully unite, creating a force that could give parents more voice in the education of our children. Ideally, we could push for decentralized, smaller school districts.
As I see it, there is little strength among parents because there is no gathering and training place. If parents have a problem, they have to come up with their own network. PTA’s are really just an extention of the teachers’ interests to a large extent. But a PACE group (Parent Alliance for their Children’s Educations) would be a group where we could disperse information and discuss goals for our own schools–tapping some of the positive energy Charter schools enjoy. Also, parents could address problems/concerns and then prepare their solutions to be presented as powerfully and unitedly as possible.
We need a positive focus on building and improving. Obviously there is a lot to fight against, but people are more powerful when they are fighting for something. I think these groups would be amazing training for citizenship and political activity as well.
So please send me your ideas and comments. I would like to include them in a meeting I will be organizing at my home. Let me know (by email or phone) if you would like to be involved and how. Anyone who would like to come help with ideas for creating a structure, defining goals, etc., is welcome. Afterwards, I will post the results, and we will go from there. We will need individuals who are willing to spearhead things in their schools. This is a start-up so don’t count yourself out. Anyone with the desire to improve their school for their children can gain experience along the way, just like the rest of us.
Kristen Shumway 801-701-0641
Sheldon Shumway 801-556-3431
kristen dot shumway at gmail dot com
In the old world, all roads led to Rome. In our modern world, one might also say all roads lead to the U.N. Roads of corruption that is. The United Nations is one of the world’s most corrupt organizations bent on global communism. Their “Agenda 21″ plan affects us all the way down to Alpine School District. Please watch this video which someone sent me that summarizes elements from “Agenda 21.” Then please pass it on. Starting at the 5:43 mark you’ll learn about the plan to deliberately dumb down America (even showcasing one of the worst constructivist programs in existence, “Connected math,” used by Alpine in 6-9th grades, and many other school districts around the country. It was removed by the Utah State Office as an approved primary program but Alpine continues to use it full bore in classrooms and not as a supplement to a real math program). Those who have said there isn’t a deliberate effort to dumb us down will find an answer here as well with a special nod to Charlotte Iserbyt’s book, The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America.
DO YOU LIVE IN UTAH COUNTY? BE AT THE VINEYARD TOWN HALL AT 7 PM WEDNESDAY NIGHT UNLESS YOU WANT A 35 YEAR PROPERTY TAX INCREASE TO ENRICH SOME DEVELOPERS. (Vineyard meeting moved tonight due to expected size. Go to Vineyard Elementary School ; 620 East Holdaway Road (400 South) at 7 PM)
Last week at work, a co-worker handed me a few interesting news articles. There’s been some odd happenings with the Utah Transit Authority (UTA) in the past which triggered requests for an audit last year. A number things don’t make sense to me right now but some people are looking into this in the hopes of making sense of it.
Over a month ago there was a vote to approve a redevelopment agency in Vineyard. There were 2 parts: one to clean up Geneva’s site, and another for massive tax breaks for the developers over 35-40 years which would prevent (depending on who you talk to) perhaps $200 million from flowing into Alpine School District to cover costs of dealing with many students moving into Vineyard. As I previously blogged, I agree that the cleanup is probably appropriate, but tax breaks for developers after that is absolutely wrong. Let the market decide how that land gets developed.
Utah county commissioner Larry Ellertson was one of the members of this committee who voted in favor of giving huge tax breaks to the developers of the Vineyard RDA. I mention him in particular since he’s mentioned below in the news articles I’ve posted snips from below.
Vineyard is to receive a TRAX or FrontRunner station through UTA as part of this deal. Why UTA and these RDA’s are popping up together is something that I haven’t put the dots together on but I think it’s something we should all be interested in.
If any of you don’t really know what a “redevelopment” project is, Thomas Sowell recently wrote an article which the Deseret News carried explaining the problem with redevelopments which was really enlightening for me. I highly recommend you read this article and then look at the pictures below from the Sandy TRAX station redevelopment agency which is now just an eyesore. Based on Sandy’s TRAX project, and the fact below that some of the Geneva/Vineyard principals have defaulted on a loan in Vineyard and are trying to escape the personal guarantee’s of $36 million, and then in the next article saying if the project is approved they’ll put $600 million into the project, it all seems a bit fishy to me and not at all worth the risk. (not to mention the tax breaks)
Sandy TRAX RDA pics
Here are the articles:
April 29, 2010
UTA facing big cuts. Already made $11 million in budget cuts. However…
“UTA board chairman Larry Ellertson tells the Salt Lake Tribune the new CEO position being created for general manager John Inglish — for which he will be paid close to $300,000 a year — is in fact his severance after 32 years with the agency.”
That’s interesting…someone gets longevity severance??? How much does the Governor make? We can’t find a “public servant” for less than this?
May 19, 2010 (VIDEO NEWS CLIP)
This is interesting. Bruce Jones, UTA’s lawyer, is a member of the Cottonwood Heights city council. Jones lobbied on behalf of Terry Diehl for a TRAX stop next to a development owned by Diehl. Diehl is on the UTA board and determines Jone’s pay. Jones received an $80,000 raise in one year though I can’t tell from the article if it was before or after Jones’ lobbying efforts.
Jan 20, 2011
Anderson Geneva Development purchased the Geneva land in 2005 after Geneva closed in 2001. Anderson has spent $20 million to clean it up and another $4 million on improvements. A $300 million plan was approved for this site and is planned to have a UTA FrontRunner and TRAX transit hub located there.
Feb. 22, 2011
Anderson Development is walking away from a $36.4 million loan from America First Credit Union. AFCU isn’t happy about it and is suing Gerald Anderson and Michael Hutchings who personally guaranteed the loan. Anderson has a $10 million commitment to Vineyard to build an overpass, fire station and water tank.
Mar. 17, 2011 (VIDEO NEWS CLIP)
Hutchings says his company will pledge $600 million on the project if the URA deal goes through to raise taxes on Utah county residents.
My question is, if they’re walking away from a $36 million commitment, how do we have any proof they will follow through on a $600 million pledge? Just to be sure no one ties this into the Sandy TRAX RDA above, I have no idea if these people were involved on that project.
Mar. 17, 2011
“The Alpine School District and Utah Taxpayers Association don’t want to see public money used to fund part of the $900 million-plus makeover planned for the former Geneva Steel property.
And they may take legal action to keep it from happening.
…If the project is approved next week by the town RDA, homeowners living within the Alpine School District boundaries would see a property tax increase of between $14 and $17 per year — based on the average home price of $230,000 — for 35 years.
School district officials also are worried about the 400-plus acres of residential construction in Anderson Development’s plans. Property taxes on the homes, Bromley says, would not pay for the full cost of educating the number of students such growth would bring.”
I would support ASD doing this.
***AMEN*** Mar. 19, 2011 (Editorial)
“[Vineyard] City leaders ought to reject this, at least at the amount proposed, for a variety of reasons. While it may be legitimate to use tax money to clean the blighted site of the old steel mill, or to attract businesses that bring new people to the state, the free market, not tax subsidies, ought to determine most of what goes on that site.
Instead, the proposal would leave the Alpine School District shortchanged. That is because part of the subsidy would come from money that normally goes to schools. It would be tied up for 35 years while new housing adds to the burden of students who need to be taught.
…If Utah County has a demand for housing, shopping or businesses, the market should decide where they go, and they should contribute taxes to the programs and agencies that serve them. For Vineyard to give any more than what it would take to clean the Geneva Steel site would be wrong.”
In summary, there are a lot of odd things happening here and although I don’t have the connections crystal clear, it’s troubling enough that some investigations ought to happen and at a minimum, the previous vote needs overturned Wednesday night.
Still think John Goodlad isn’t having a negative influence in Alpine School District? Schools are sending his socialist propaganda home in newsletters. John Goodlad is a John Dewey disciple and award winner. Dewey was one of the original signatories of the Humanist Manifesto and both these men have an agenda to embed the principles of socialism in our schools. When challenged, the principal and PTA president just brush it off and dismiss it as no big deal. Isn’t it?
Read what one parent wrote after receiving this school newsletter:
In February, my kindergartner came home with the monthly PTA newsletter, and every month, as usual, the Principal writes a few encouraging words to all students and parents of the school. As I read the second paragraph-I was alarmed by this statement “John Dewey, a respected educator said: ‘What the best and wisest parent wants for his own child, that must the community want for all of its children. Any other ideal for our schools is narrow and unlovely; acted upon, it destroys our democracy.‘”
My heart sank, and quickly I went to the school. Newsletter in hand, I asked the Principal why she decided to put a quote from John Dewey in the newsletter. I told her it was wrong to put any of John’s philosophies in a school newsletter. Dewey is not a respected educator; he is a socialist progressive. She informed me that it was only an innocent quote she happened to stumble upon and she thought it sounded nice. She ‘respects’ John Dewey; it’s just my ‘opinion’ that he’s not respected. She told me that next time, she’ll take out the ‘respected educator’ part.
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, so that evening I called the PTA President. I told her that the PTA newsletter was very controversial. She knew exactly which part it was and immediately sided with the Principal. She told me (laughing) that there are much bigger problems in this world to be worried about, and that this is not a Big Deal. I told her that my children’s educations are a huge deal. “Yes, but Liz, I know all about John Dewey, and actually I admire him, and the things he says,” she said. “We shouldn’t be worrying about these little things, and I hope this won’t keep you away from helping the PTA,” she said. It certainly does, and I will never ignore the goings on in our community, especially the educational system. I will always stand up for what is right, even if it means noticing something so ‘small’.
After playing phone tag with the District Leader of our school, I ran into her in the Lehi Elementary School Library as I was checking out the patriotic section. She immediately asked me if I was part of the ‘Radical’ group in Alpine (I wasn’t at the time, but after our little conversation I asked around and found them and signed their petition). After some back and forth conversation, she asked me several times what can she possibly do to help the situation. I told her about the newsletter, concerned parents, and teaching the 3 R’s, so on… She said she would ‘talk’ to the Principal and that “Wow! I didn’t even think that anyone ever read the front page of the newsletter! (Laughing) Oh, but I’m not saying that you’re dumb or anything like that.”
She asked me what part of the quote was so controversial. I told her it was the Democracy part. So she so kindly explained to me what Democracy was. I asked her straight out if she incorporates Goodlad’s theories into our school. It was all just a confusing blur after that as she proceeded to tiptoe around that question and squirmed in her chair. I was treated like a dumb, ‘how dare you’ person. Since then, I have informed friends, neighbors and family what is going on.
(Here’s the full page if you want to view it)
By Buffy Snell
I have lived in American Fork for 15 years, and have had 4 children excel in many ways because of the exceptional teachers of Alpine School District (ASD). Understandably then, I am respectful and grateful to the staff. At the same time I have noticed that relativism, a prevalent educational philosophy, is making its way into local classrooms and I feel parents need to be aware of what their children may be learning. Relativism teaches there is no absolute truth—that nothing is certain because it is subjective. Even though our community would largely agree that such a view is false; proponents of relativism, such as John Goodlad, have been influencing educators in our district for many years. Our children and our country are reaping the consequences. In fact, in a recent address to the Chapman University School of Law, Dallin H. Oaks has strongly condemned moral relativism because it leads to a loss of religious freedom. (http://newsroom.lds.org/article/elder-oaks-religious-freedom-Chapman-University)
John Goodlad not only views morality as relative, but patriotism as well:
“…educators must resist the quest for certainty. If there were certainty there would be no scientific advancement. So it is with morals and patriotism.” –John Goodlad, Education for Everyone: Agenda for Education in a Democracy”, Woods Learning Center, pg. 6
If this were true, teaching children allegiance to our country and that 2+2 =4 would NOT lead to “advancement.” I am deeply troubled that undermining views such as this would be allowed to influence the minds of an American classroom, especially my child’s. Because of alarming instruction given to my son, I’ve filed a transfer request from his Jr. High Geography class. I have chosen to share the details of that transfer in hopes that the community will increase their vigilance and hold accountable those who are vested with the responsibility to teach and promote our American form of government. Following are the details.
1. My son came home from his Geography class relaying that his teacher had explained to him why Communism “isn’t really that bad.” (those were my son’s exact words)
His teacher’s response to me was that he explores the pros and cons of many forms of government so that students can understand why different systems of rule appeal to different people. He did this, he said, as a way to promote critical thinking. He also said:
“I do not promote or decry any government, religion, or economic system over another one. It is not my place to put one thing above or below another- that is the job of parents and for the students to decide on their own….I have students who come from homes of MANY different political and religious backgrounds.” He also said, ”I will not infringe on people’s right to decide for themselves.”
While religious neutrality is important in a school setting, educators are required to promote our American form of government. According to Utah Code I.53A-13-109 teachers are responsible for:
“reaffirming values and qualities of character which promote an upright and desirable citizenry…. Civic and Character Education are fundamental elements of the public education system’s core mission …students shall be taught in connection with regular school work…respect for and an understanding of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitutions of the United States and of the State of Utah… and qualities of character which will promote an upright and desirable citizenry and better prepare students to recognize and accept responsibility for preserving and defending the blessings of liberty inherited from prior generations and secured by the constitution.” http://le.utah.gov/~code/TITLE53A/htm/53A13_010900.htm
Not only has the teacher failed to prepare students to recognize and accept responsibility for preserving liberty, he has failed to help them think critically. Critical thinking can only be done when students have an adequate amount of information. And significant facts about Communism were clearly missing.
I have no problem with a teacher who wants to teach children about Communism. In fact, it’s important that he does—as long as children are given enough information from which to draw a proper conclusion. For example, one of the “pros” discussed about Communism was equality. But to truly educate children about the economic realities of Communism, one would have to inform them that the rulers live lavishly at the people’s expense and that “equality” of impoverishment and subjection could never be considered a “pro” for anyone but those running the government.
In addition, teaching that Communism “appeals” to some people and a Republic “appeals” to others, not only communicates relativism—that there is nothing certain because it is subjective; it gives children the impression that there is actually something good about oppression. When done in conjunction with a teacher who is unwilling to promote one form of government over another, it’s not surprising that a child comes to the FALSE conclusion that Communism “isn’t really that bad.”
Communism has been described as “the greatest crime against humanity in the 20th century” and has resulted in the estimated death of 100 million people. http://www.autentico.org/oa09347.php
2. Because of something his teacher said my son came home believing that Mormons are naive and uninformed. He was very upset about a certain aspect of our religion (which he learned from the teacher) and wasn’t sure that he wanted to be Mormon anymore. According to my son, his teacher said he knows more about the Mormon religion than most Mormons because he goes on the Church web site all the time and Mormons can’t even go to the highest kingdom of heaven unless they practice polygamy. These remarks are disparaging and a contradiction of what he expressed to me in point 1 above. The teacher was criticizing Mormons, not only for their views, but for their alleged ignorance. The law states, “employees may not use their positions to …disparage a particular religious… belief or viewpoint. (See 53A-13-101.1. http://le.utah.gov/~code/TITLE53A/htm/53A13_010101.htm)
When I reported these incidents to the principal, he defended the teacher and blamed my son for “misinterpreting” classroom dialogue without even verifying whether or not other students had similar views. He skillfully avoided my questions during our meeting, and refused TWO follow up requests for a WRITTEN response to the following:
1. Would it concern you (specifically) if teachers in your school taught as if they believed this statement by John Goodlad?
There is a belief by some that there exists “objective knowledge” and a
“correct” view of the world. This view is incorrect. All knowledge is partial
and subjective. There is no single worldview that deserves complete
2. I would like to know what the consequences are for violating the Utah Code and how the school plans to ensure that such violations will not continue.
After failing to get a response, I sent the following question to the Superintendent and the Board member for my district.
I would like to know what the consequences are for violating I.53A-13-109 and 53A-13-101.1 of the Utah code and what actions will be taken if there is a violation?
The correspondence from the Superintendent read,
“I encourage you to continue working with [the Principal] concerning this matter.”
My board member never responded to me.
What are my options? If the teacher refuses to comply with the law; if the Principal fails to investigate; if the Superintendent simply deflects my concerns back to the Principal; and my elected representative doesn’t respond, how do I make sure that teachers are held accountable for what they teach in the classroom?
Although the teacher declined to address many of my concerns or promote our American form of government, he did apologize to my son for the offensive remarks he made about Mormons. But I am troubled that the Principal refused to take any corrective action before amendments were made, choosing instead to blame my son.
The Principal informed me that the school would be happy to help me find a “better fit” for my son. When I protested that the other Geography teachers at the school were also exploring the “pros” of Communism, I was informed that my child could do packets or go to a class at the High School. I was also told that I am the only one who has expressed any concern. While that may be true, I believe it is because many parents are unaware of what is happening in some classrooms or what Utah law requires. You can see below from a survey given to 10 students in this teacher’s Geography class that a high percentage of other children have drawn conclusions similar to my son’s—conclusions I consider dangerous to the future of our freedoms.
In the NNER Today 2009-2010 update published by the Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling at BYU, it says:
“To join the NNER is to commit to action. It means committing to the principles of the Agenda for Education in a Democracy and becoming stewards of our democracy. As Dr. Goodlad has observed, education must be the foundation for seeking positive social and political change.”—Ann Foster, Goodlad’s Executive Director
Alpine School District is fully committed to the NNER and regularly attends their conferences. By committing to its agenda and allowing John Goodlad to influence education in our district, political change is upon us. Time is short. And unless we hold public educators responsible for teaching this generation to preserve liberty, there will be no liberty left to preserve.
2010/2011 Survey for Geography Class (Semester I)
Mr. Gray is a fun teacher.
8 marked (Y)
2 marked (M) for maybe
There are some good things about Communism.
9 marked (Y)
1 marked (N)
One of the good things about Communism is equality.
7 marked (Y)
3 marked (N)
We should respect others views, even if we disagree. There is not one “right” view when it comes to different kinds of government.
10 marked (Y)– 100% lack the basic understanding that the American Republic is the most successful and superior form of government there is and well worth defending.
Ed. note: Are you really sure you know what’s being taught in your child’s classroom and what ideas your child is picking up on?
Ed. note 2: This article has been edited with the permission of the author so the article just focuses on the most pertinent issues which pertain to state law.
Alpine School District just responded to criticism they received during a Senate Education Committee meeting last week. Their response on the Daily Herald website started with this statement:
“Members of the Alpine School District Board of Education take an oath of office to uphold the Constitutions of the United States and the State of Utah.”
Is it not beyond obvious that people can take an oath and render it meaningless by constructing new meanings and understandings that are not grounded in fact? Our current president is a prime example.
As one of those that testified against some of the actions of Alpine School District during that senate meeting, let me say for the record that I disagree with the points made by the school district on the following grounds.
1) ASD has never been responsive to its primary stakeholders…parents. During one short period of time a few years ago when parents were upset at the district for removing the times tables from the curriculum, I received 4 separate phone calls and emails from individuals who spoke to the same administrator at the district who told each one of them they were the only parent to ever complain about the program. This was clearly an attempt to isolate parents and minimize their concerns. Prior to my involvement which started in 2005, hundreds of parents had been complaining to ASD since Investigations was first implemented in 2001 about the lack of solid math skills being taught. ASD ignored them all, confiscated books at 4 schools I am aware of, and threatened some teacher’s contracts if they taught the times tables to children. I have personally spoken with a teacher who this happened to along with her co-workers. Numerous other teachers have contacted me and told me they used to shut their doors to teach the times tables. How ridiculous is that?
2) This is clearly in dispute. One teacher in particular that was mentioned (not by name) had been teaching students the benefits of communism without the other horrific side of the story on the hundred million or so citizens put to death in the last century by communist dictators. When one student came home and told his mother “communism isn’t really that bad,” she thought maybe it was just her child misinterpreting what the teacher said. So she gave a survey to 10 other students in the class. 9/10 responded with “yes” to the statement “There are some good things about communism.” 7/10 responded “yes” to “One of the good things about communism is equality.” 9/10 responded “yes” to “Islam is a religion of peace.” 10/10 responded “yes” to “We should respect others views, even if we disagree. There is not one ‘right’ view when it comes to different kinds of government.” There is one right view of government, and that is in following its proper role in protecting freedom and individual rights.
3) Testimony concerning Investigations math didn’t declare it a violation of state law to use the program. My testimony concerned Patti Harrington removing Investigations math from the approved list as a primary curriculum, yet ASD continues to allow Investigations to be used as a full primary curriculum in many classrooms across the district. They say they use “balanced math” which isn’t a program, and continue to let teachers use Investigations math solely. They also use 100% Connected math in many classes and that program has also been removed from the approved list by Patti Harrington because it is also an incredibly weak and ineffective program. These programs actually led to Utah raising it’s math standards a couple years ago.
4) ASD maintains that they invite “responsible and civil participation” to address parent concerns. For nearly a decade, parents have tried to get the district to listen to their concerns in a civil manner. Civility to ASD seems to mean open your mouth and take your medicine. Parents concerns are met with deaf ears and an attitude of, “you’re not a professional educator, we know best.” Whether it is stubborn pride or their own indoctrination in Goodlad and Dewey’s philosophies, ASD is not about to start listening to responsible parents and taking their concerns seriously. They took down the “Enculturating the Young into a Social and Political Democracy” sign just before the November election, yet two senior administrators told parents they may take the sign down but they weren’t going to change their philosophy. If the district was really concerned with continuous improvement and listening to parental concerns, they would have dropped Investigations math in 2002 right after they were flooded by concerned parents who tried to inform the district about the damage being done by their pseudo-math. In spite of overwhelming evidence that contradicts their position, such as Project Follow-Through, they barrel on, causing untold damage to tens of thousands of children who might otherwise have a future in a math related field.
To the Alpine School District Board,
I know we periodically find ourselves at odds but I am very pleased to find us on the same side in the issue of the Vineyard Urban Redevelopment Agency. I understand that in the recent vote, your position was outvoted by others who would financially benefit by the arrangement. I also understand that taxpayers within the school district will be on the hook for a couple hundred million dollars over the next 35 years. This is the classic case of democratic majority rule where 2 wolves and a sheep vote on what to have for dinner. The rest of the committee appears to benefit by saddling the rest of the district taxpayers with their development. I was quite surprised to hear that the representative from the state office of education didn’t vote with the school district. That seems quite odd and opens up questions into how they arrived at their position.
Short of a successful legal challenge, there may not be a lot that can be done to prevent this injustice. However, I would like to suggest something for your consideration.
Vineyard voted to pass their hundreds of millions of dollars of development costs and developer tax breaks on to the school district taxpayers’ while we continue to pay for their children to be educated. It seems appropriate to return the favor and publicly announce that at your next board meeting you will be discussing the possibility of splitting Vineyard off as a separate school district. This doesn’t have to be a serious consideration, just a warning shot across the bow that help Vineyard realize they’re affecting the lives of many citizens outside their town. Taxation without proportional representation has a downside when others choose to dissociate themselves from them.
The County may have *some* limited responsibility to clean up the site but giving massive tax breaks to the developer after that is entirely inappropriate.
Taxpayers aren’t going to be excited about cleaning up Vineyard, giving massive tax breaks to a developer, and paying for a brand new bond in ASD. Thank you for standing for fiscal responsibility and not taking important future revenue from the ASD.
Oak Norton, Utah’s Republic
Special thanks to Wendy Hart’s excellent writeup on her blog. Please read it here: