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May 4, 2006

Early Childhood / IB Updates and more...

Star Tribune editorial today
EdWatch is relieved, but the Strib is angered by the defeat of Minnesota Governor Pawlenty's Nanny State proposals this session. The Governor's misguided proposals would have been a huge leap toward the state's take-over of early education with all of the very dangerous diversity-training Indicators that care givers would become accountable to.

Please take heed. The reliably leftist paper's recommendations are a warning to us all:
But old legislative hands have a saying: "No bill is dead until they've been home three days." Steps that would improve the education of Minnesota's 3- and 4-year-olds are alive in the Senate. They can still become law this year.
Indeed they can. Legislators should hear from their constituents to keep the early learning proposals out of their final agreements.

Upper St. Clair, Pennsylvania anti-IB group formed --
Responsible- ed.org
Upper St. Clair citizens organized to defend representative government, oppose narrow interests and outside interference, and support responsible school directors.

Board Forced to Settle ACLU Lawsuit Against IB
April 24, 2006

Upper St. Clair, PA.  Although the supporters of responsible-ed.org are very disappointed that the Upper St. Clair School Board was forced to settle the frivolous lawsuit brought against the school district by the ACLU, IB plaintiffs, Kirkpatrick/Lockhart and Schnader Harrison, we can sympathize and understand why the difficult decision was made. Amid the waste of time and hundreds of thousands of taxpayers dollars, the onslaught of personal attacks and character assassination, and the destructive impact on the community, the school board chose to put an end to the madness created by a small group of dissident parents.  Since the lawsuit was filed, board members have endured continual nuisance heckling, harassment of family members and threats of  subpoenas and depositions, and threats on their professional careers and livelihoods through personal lawsuits and intimidation.

In an attempt to overturn the election of November 2005, the ACLU plaintiffs, et al found a pyrrhic victory.  They may have prevailed in the backrooms of the courthousebut at what cost?  The reasonable citizens of USC will not permit a special interest group to crush a small towns representative government.  This temporary setback for the citizen majority will not suppress the will of the electorate.

The voters in November clearly preferred board members who pledge fiscal common sense.  This lawsuit was pushed by the same people and their supporters who lost in the last election and refuse to take economic realities into consideration.  It is frightening to watch the ACLU and the 2 mega law firms use their techniques of massive litigation, disruption and imposition of runaway legal costs on USC.

It is a shame that a small minority in USC is going to compel the School Board to choose between making taxpayers fund an inefficient, failed program of no advantage and little appealthat graduated 10 students in 6 yearsor waste more tax dollars by taking an inane journey through a legal labyrinth.

It is our hope that the School Board members will be allowed to guide the school district as they were elected to do.
  Read More
IB FAQ's from Upper St. Clair, PA

Pittsburgh Post Gazette, May 1, 2006
"Though IB's emphasis is global, its students have learned an important lesson in modern American democracy: how a loud, privileged minority can sabotage the voters' will."

"Unwrapping the International Baccalaureate Program" from the Commonwealth Education Association of PA
here .

The group calls itself, "Where's the Math?"
Like similar Minnesota public school parent groups from Eden Prairie and Maple Grove, Where's the Math is questioning the radical "integrated math" education approach being promoted by math educators, but opposed by many mathematicians and college math professors. Their meeting in Bellevue, Washington last Tuesday, April 25 drew some 300 concerned parents, legislators, educators, college professors, and Elizabeth Carson, Director of New York City HOLD (a math advocacy group). Carson argued that math education is inferior in the United States compared to many other countries, and that it poses a threat to our national economy and security. Read the whole story here...

Universal Mental Health Screening Friday May 5th
with Dr. Karen Effrem, Pediatrician
"Saturday is Childhood Depression Awareness Day. What better topic to discuss than the push for mental health screening for all pregnant women and children 0-18 yrs old. How effective are anti-depressants in children? Does screening stop suicide? Why the push?"
Order your copy of the Universal Mental Health Screening Briefing Book online here.

NEA - for All the Teachers?
with Orlean Koehle, President California Eagle Forum
This week National Teacher Day is observed, but as our guest reports after spending a week at the National Education Association's annual convention, where 9,000 delegates attended, some teachers' voices were silenced. Our guest takes us behind the scene Read more...

You gotta be kidding ...

"The major function of the school is the social orientation of the individual. It must seek to give him understanding of the transition to a new social order." - Willard Givens, Executive Secretary, National Education Association, 1934

Latest on the Education Blog
No white flag to feminism here
Moms Rising demands an end to the mommy wars, not because theyre ready to leave parents well enough alone. No, this truce demands that we all agree with MoveOn.orgs political agenda for state intervention into our kids and family life. Their elitist empowerment goal would educate mothers and other caregivers about the injustice with how were treated, meaning we need more social programs, universal pre-school, and a political agenda mirroring MoveOn.orgs radicalism. They advocate for a societal shift, which will spike up the taxes that force two parents into the workplace. Read it all here.

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