BYU Ed Dept and NRMERA

Susie Schnell found yet another connection for BYU’s Education Department. This time it’s the organization NRMERA (Northern Rocky Mountain Educational Research Association) and their home page contains this message from the organization’s 2011 president, BYU Education Department professor Pamela Cantrell.

Message From the President:

In deciding our theme for NRMERA 2011, I was very influenced by the following quote by William Ayers:

“Thoughtfulness requires wide- awakeness– a willingness to look at the conditions of our lives, to consider alternatives and different possibilities, to challenge received wisdom and the taken for granted, and to link our conduct with our consciousness.”

Our teaching profession often rallies around the “best practice” cry, framing it as an end result, a set of competencies to be met before best practice can be claimed. Some researchers talk about “owning” a given number of best practice principles and warn that if not perfected, the principles may just become another set of unproductive rituals that are mindlessly applied just to meet best practice criteria. What often happens is these principles are placed on a shelf, we glance at them once in awhile, maybe we take one out for a spin now and then, but we largely ignore them and perhaps feel a bit guilty and overwhelmed by the magnitude of achieving all of them.

What I like about the Ayres quote is that it suggests a willingness to evaluate where we are, and then take action that aligns with our personal philosophies. Those actions may be incremental—moving us step by step at our own pace—guilt-free–toward better alignment between where we are and where we hope to be. In our very busy and productive lives, what I think is needed is a measured personal effort inspired by hope and optimism that will lead us…

Toward Better Practice

Helping to frame our 2011 Conference around this theme will be our Keynote Speaker, Robert V. Bullough, Jr., eminent scholar and colleague, Professor of Teacher Education, Association Director of the Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling (CITES), Brigham Young University, and Emeritus Professor of Educational Studies, University of Utah. His most recent books include (with Craig Kridel), Stories of the Eight-Year Study: Reexamining Secondary Education in America (SUNY Press, 2007) andCounternarratives: Studies of Teacher Education, and Becoming and Being a Teacher, also from SUNY Press (2008).

Pamela Cantrell, 2011 NRMERA President

Robert Bullough at BYU, is also good friends with Bill Ayers, pictured here together (Ayers on the left sporting the communist star, Craig Kridel in the center, Robert Bullough on the right):


Why do so many BYU Education Department professors have an infatuation with Bill Ayers and other people who want to tear down our country and our God-centered morals? Yesterday’s post showed BYU’s professors on the board of directors of NAME, an organization that wants to educate children in the classroom in order to END heterosexism. This must end. I’m certainly not perfect, but this whole situation brings to mind this scripture:

Mormon 8:38 “O ye pollutions, ye hypocrites, ye teachers, who sell yourselves for that which will canker, why have ye polluted the holy church of God? Why are ye ashamed to take upon you the name of Christ? Why do ye not think that greater is the value of an endless happiness than that misery which never dies-because of the praise of the world?”

You can’t mix Korihor’s doctrine with Christ’s and come up with a perfect blend of educational ideas.

President Joseph F. Smith said, “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.”

I have previously posted this quote and declared that the first two of those notions were being fulfilled by BYU’s Education Department’s involvement with John Goodlad’s NNER and the accolades he was bestowing on them to help them continue to feel good about promoting his transformational agenda. With yesterday’s news about NAME’s goals and BYU Education Department professors being on the board of that organization, I have to say all three are now unfortunately in play. Even if BYU’s Education Department says, “oh, we only take the good from these organizations and people and ignore the bad,” they give full credibility to such organizations by lending the name Brigham Young University to the list of institutions partnered with these organizations, sitting on their boards, and presenting at their conferences. Brigham Young must be rolling in his grave along with David O. McKay.

With BYU’s education program training so many teachers who are then placed into our schools, we are seeing the fulfillment of Abraham Lincoln’s statement, “the philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.”

My apologies to anyone in the Education Department at BYU who understands these problems but is silenced by the politics of your own personal situation.


10 Responses to “BYU Ed Dept and NRMERA”

  • Rick:

    This is really strange.  What do the higher ups have to say about it?  Why aren’t they doing anything? 

  • Bookdad1:

    Wow! really? even in our own BYU???

  • Good points, and quite disturbing.

    What is the source of the quote by Pres. Smith?

  • Nearly 100 years ago in the Improvement Era, 1914. When I did a quick search for it I found it quoted widely in General Conference talks and other writings by the General Authorities. 

  • FarmerMoses:

    Oak, Thank you for bringing these happenings to our attention. 
    What can we do to make a positive change to the happenings at BYU’s education dept?
    and elsewhere…..

  • AlumniBYU75:

    My husband and I wonder the same thing, “What do the higher ups have to say about it?” and what “higher up” could we ask at BYU to give us an answer?  Do they even know this?  I’d have guessed you [Oak] would have already spoken to someone there [BYU] about this.  Back in 2009 (I think), I emailed BYU’s David O. McKay’s Department of Education twice (a month or so a part) to ask about the ASD’s “Enculturating…” motto after I heard Susie talk about it on KSL, was sent an email from a friend in AZ who had heard about the subject, and been after beginning to read your emails I was receiving.  I never got any reply from anyone…like my emails had just disappeared in cyber space.  My husband and I would like to speak to/hear from someone higher up at BYU to ask if they know about and understand this and what their take is on it…I think everyone reading your blog would like to know that.  Where do we go for that?

  • Susie:

    I hope someone in this audience can get through better than we’ve been able to in the last two years. So far, we hear, “thank you very much”, and then general warnings over the pulpit at Conference about educating your children carefully, moral relativism, etc. Not sure what is going on, but its been over 2 yrs now. We are ready for some help and that is why this is being published for the first time publicly about BYU. We’ve known about this for a long time, but only chose to concentrate on where we were seeing it trickle down…ASD. Its only getting worse. Hint: Going to MSE won’t get you anywhere.

  • Garysedmonds:

    I am a graduate of the Dept. of Education, and I think I must be dreaming that this is happening.  We can’t let it go on.  If there are enough voices, someone will have to respond.  Let’s keep up the requests for more information.

  • Hatton47:

    Please read “The Snow white Birds” by Boyd K. Packer. He addresses the subject very well. J. Reuben Clark also addressed the issue in his presentation “Homo Demented-cus”  Selected Writings of J Reuben Clark. 

  • Susie:

    Better than that, Hatton47, you can actually go to the new Education in Zion exhibit at BYU and see the whole Snow White Birds story on video along with reading the wall posters. It tells much more detail than Pres. Packer’s talk. It’s located in their newest building, the Joseph Fielding Smith bldg, I think it’s called. Well worth it. I’d like to see if we can get that video online. Thanks for the tip.