Category Archives: Education

New York City’s public schools join fight against ‘white power’

New York City tax dollars at work in the public indoctrination system.

Principal Darlene Cameron

Principal Darlene Cameron

Via NY Post: On the last day of school, Principal Darlene Cameron of Star Academy-PS 63 in the East Village gave her small faculty a chart defining racist and non-racist institutions and asked them to think about where their school fits in.

A non-racist institution, among other things, is conscious of and aims to wipe out a culture of “white power,” “white privilege” and “inherent white advantage.” “We fit into the category of white power and privilege!” a white teacher at the K-5 school told her colleagues. The concept that whites enjoy everyday benefits simply because of their skin color has become the rage.

Elite private schools have grappled with the notion. The Post exposed an extreme case — how the Bank Street School for Children on the Upper West Side made white kids feel guilty about their “whiteness” while heaping praise and cupcakes on kids of color. The school’s diversity director stepped down after the report.

Now public schools are jumping on the bandwagon.

Carmen Farina/AP Photo

Carmen Farina/AP Photo

After recent killings of black men by cops and murders of police officers, Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña called on educators to tackle “tough conversations” about race, violence and guns.

In addition, Fariña announced a new curriculum that emphasizes social justice. She also recommended a K-12 reading list compiled by the Southern Poverty Law Center, “Perspectives for a Diverse America,” which includes selections on race, gender and LGBTQ issues. In K-2, for instance, kids can learn the true story of Z and Vielpunk, a couple of gay male penguins rearing a chick in a German zoo.

The ninth-through-12th-grade readings include a 1990 essay, “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack,” which lists 50 hidden benefits whites enjoy. No. 17: “I can talk with my mouth full and not have people put this down to my color.”

The chart handed out at Star Academy, written by an Illinois-based anti-racism ministry, angered some parents questioned by The Post. “When you start sending out things like this, it divides us,” said Robert Powell, a black dad in The Bronx who served on the city’s Panel for Educational Policy. “It’s a subtle form of racism.”

Education author Sol Stern called the chart “left-wing propaganda” and “brainwashing.” White privilege “is an argument, not a fact,” he said.

David Bloomfield

David Bloomfield

But David Bloomfield, a Brooklyn College and CUNY Graduate Center education professor, who is white, lauds the idea. “It reminds me a bit of when ‘Heather Has Two Mommies’ was recommended reading by the DOE before same-sex couples became mainstream,” he said. Greater awareness can help teachers pick books that reflect other races, he added.

It can also spur classroom discussion. “If you put the US presidents on your classroom wall, it sends a signal of who’s in charge,” Bloomfield said. “The teacher might point out to students that these are all white, except one, and all, currently, males.”

Cameron told The Post she plans to have teachers discuss the race-based issues in the fall. “We want to be sure we’re as inclusive and welcoming as possible, and that we’re all aware of the different backgrounds that come together to make up our community,” she said.

Star Academy students are 65 percent Hispanic, 20 percent black, 10 percent white and 4 percent Asian, records show.

An essay included in city high-schoolers’ reading list seeks to explain the hidden benefits supposedly enjoyed by white people. Some examples of so-called “white privilege”:

  • I have no difficulty finding neighborhoods where people approve of our household.
  • I can go shopping alone most of the time, pretty well assured that I will not be followed or harassed.
  • I do not have to educate my children to be aware of systemic racism for their own daily physical protection.
  • I can choose…bandages in “flesh” color and have them more or less match my skin.
  • I will feel welcomed and “normal” in the usual walks of public life, institutional and social.

DCG

School bans clapping and allows students ‘silent cheers’ or air punching but only when teachers agree

Children (6-13) in school auditorium giving standing ovation, portrait

Via new.com.au: Clapping has been banned at a Sydney primary school which has introduced “silent cheering”, “pulling excited faces” and “punching the air” to respect students who are “sensitive to noise”. The school now only allows its pupils “to conduct a silent cheer” when prompted by teachers and says the practice “reduces fidgeting”.

Elanora Heights Public School, which is on Sydney’s northern beaches, announced its new “silent cheer” policy in its latest school newsletter.

The ban on clapping at Elanora Heights Primary School emerged on the same day that an exclusive girls school banned teachers from calling “ladies” or “women” in favour of “gender-neutral” terms.

In its July 18 newsletter, the Elanora school has published an item under the headline “Did you know” that “our school has adopted silent cheers at assembly’s” (sic). “If you’ve been to a school assembly recently, you may have noticed our students doing silent cheers,” the item reads. “Instead of clapping, the students are free to punch the air, pull excited faces and wriggle about on the spot. The practice has been adopted to respect members of our school community who are sensitive to noise.”

no clapping

“When you attend an assembly, teachers will prompt the audience to conduct a silent cheer if it is needed. Teachers have also found the silent cheers to be a great way to expend children’s energy and reduce fidgeting.

The ban follows a direction at exclusive Cheltenham Girls High School in northwest Sydney for teachers to avoid discrimination and support LGBTI students by avoiding the words “girls”, “ladies” or “women”.

The measure followed the introduction of the Safe Schools anti-bullying program and teachers were told at a meeting if they did not comply they could be deemed homophobic and breaking the law.

The school also has a “Queer-Straight alliance” club and holds gender equality events such as Wear it Purple Day. Last month, it lowered the Aboriginal flag to raise the rainbow flag at half-mast following the attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

Local MP Damien Tudehope told the Daily Telegraph that parents feared their daughters might be ostracised if they didn’t comply with Rainbow Day and Purple Day.

Elanora Heights Public School’s ban on clapping in favour of silent cheering comes after several schools have banned hugging. In April, hugging was banned at a Geelong primary school and children were told to find other ways to show affection. St. Patrick’s Primary School principal John Grant said “nothing in particular” had caused hugging to be replaced by high fiving or “a knuckle handshake”. “But in this current day and age we are really conscious about protecting kids and teaching them from a young age that you have to be cautious,” Mr Grant said.

He said he had spoken to teachers about his decision to ban hugging and then the teachers had spoken to classes, instructing the children on different methods of showing affection. He had not sent any correspondence home to parents but said there would now be a letter going home on Monday.

“There’s a range of methods including a high five or a particular knuckle handshake where they clunk knuckles as a simple way of saying ‘well done’,” Mr. Grant said. “There are also verbal affirmations and acknowledgments.”

Children at the school have been enthusiastic huggers, he said, with hugs given out to teachers and other children. “We have a lot of kids who walk up and hug each other and we’re trying to encourage all of us to respect personal space,” Mr Grant said. “It really comes back to not everyone is comfortable in being hugged.”

Comment from Elanora Heights Public School about the clapping ban has been sought by news.com.au.

DCG

New USDA Rules Eliminate Junk Food in Schools

Apparently Michelle hasn’t ruined the kids’ lunches enough already.

An example of Michelle Obama's mandated school lunches

An example of Michelle Obama’s mandated school lunches

From Yahoo:  Students might notice some changes in the cafeteria when they go back to school in a few weeks.  The USDA will announce rules today that require schools to get rid of unhealthy snacks and eliminate students’ exposure to junk food, ABC News has exclusively learned.

The biggest difference this year will be what students see around the school. If a snack, food item or beverage is not healthy enough for a school to sell or serve, it can’t be advertised either. That means no more pictures of soda on vending machines or in the cafeteria.

Katie Wilson, USDA deputy under secretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services, said many schools requested these changes.  “Education and wellness and advertising to kids about healthier choices [and] that all has to be part of the school environment just like making sure they have pencils and paper and computers,” Wilson said.

One study found that 70 percent of elementary and middle school students see ads for junk food at school and research published earlier this month showed that kids tend to eat more after seeing ads for unhealthy food.

Another lovely school lunch

Another lovely school lunch

Snacks can’t have too many calories or too much sodium, fat or sugar, according to the guidelines for schools. Foods that are “whole grain-rich” or mostly made up of fruits or vegetables are emphasized, and schools are recommended to sell only water, low-fat milk or milk alternatives, or 100 percent fruit or vegetable juice.

Wilson said 98 percent of schools around the country already meet these standards. Now that the rules are finalized, she said the USDA will continue its efforts to educate parents, communities and school staff about better nutritional food choices.

Healthier food in schools is nothing new. Guidelines about healthy school lunches and snacks have been rolling out for several years and are part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign launched in 2010 to fight childhood obesity.

mooch eating

DCG

Police officers pay for motel room, help raise $150G for homeless teen who biked six hours to college

Fred Barley/Facebook photo

Fred Barley/Facebook photo

From Fox News: More than $150,000 dollars have been raised for a Georgia 19-year-old who was found sleeping in a tent outside the gates of his college last weekend. 

Fred Barley, who is homeless, was discovered by two police officers responding to a trespassing call near a parking lot at Gordon State College in Barnesville. He told the officers he had ridden his little brother’s bicycle six hours to register for classes for his second semester of college. 

In addition to the bike, Barley had two duffel bags containing all his wordly possessions and two gallons of water. All he had to eat, according to a report by WSB, was a box of cereal.

“After meeting Fred, I could tell he was a good kid,” Gordon State College Police Officer Dicky Carreker told the Barnesville Herald-Gazette. “He was a young kid who had been dealt a bad hand and was trying to make the best out of it. All he wanted was a job.

Carreker and Barnesville Police Officer Maria Gebelein told Barley he couldn’t stay in the tent, but they knew someplace he could stay. The officers brought Barley to a nearby motel and paid for two nights accomodation.

“The stuff that’s happening with police officers, I am black and he didn’t care what color I was,” Barley told WSB. “He just helped me, and that meant a lot.”

The story, however, doesn’t end there. After Carreker posted the story on Facebook, members of the community rallied behind Barley. A GoFundMe page on Barley’s behalf had raised $150,000 dollars as of Saturday afternoon. 

The owner of a local pizzeria hired him as a dishwasher and promised to work around his class scheduled (Barley wants to major in biology). Other residents have donated clothes, food and a new bike.

“I was not expecting any of this support and am in awe of how this community has come together to help me,” Barley told the Herald-Gazette. “I was just trying to go to school, find a job and make it on my own. Now it seems as though I am part of a new community and have a new family.”

DCG

Millennials: Generation Snowflake

Millennials are those born between 1982 and 2004 (12 to 34 years of age today), whose ridiculously-fragile, thin-skinned sensibilities are coddled and catered to by colleges and universities, which have earned them the derisive moniker of “Generation Snowflake”.

Special snowflakeFinally, more and more people are speaking out.

One of them is a top British thinker, Claire Fox, who’s the director of the Institute of Ideas thinktank. In a June 8, 2016 op/ed for Daily Mail, Fox writes about the contrast between the Millennials and previous generations of young people, especially:

“this generation’s almost belligerent sense of entitlement. They assume their emotional suffering takes precedence. Express a view they disagree with and you must immediately recant and apologise.

But as I argue in my new book – I Find That Offensive! – Generation Snowflake believe it’s their right to be protected from anything they might find unpalatable.

This mindset is particularly rife in universities. The examples are beyond parody: a National Union of Students conference banning clapping as it might trigger trauma (‘please use jazz hands’, delegates were told); the Edinburgh University student threatened with expulsion from a meeting after raising her hand in disagreement.

Last year, students at the University of East Anglia banned a Mexican restaurant from giving out sombreros because of racist stereotyping.

In March, Cambridge University banned an ‘Around The World in 80 Days’ themed party over fears wearing ethnic costumes might cause offence.

Students demand that universities are ‘safe spaces’, free from opinions that will make them feel uncomfortable. There has been a rise in ‘No platforming’ – barring someone with controversial views from speaking at an event at all.

Faced with such thin-skinned students, no wonder Oxford University has introduced ‘trigger warnings’ about ‘potentially distressing subject matter’ in law lectures on cases involving sexual violence.

Never mind that a future in criminal law will mean dealing with all the unpleasant aspects of human experience.

The list goes on. And on.

But as Fox points out, in the end, Millennials are snowflakes because of society’s coddling:

It makes me sad that these teens and 20-somethings have become so fearful that they believe a dissenting opinion can pose such a serious threat. But can we really be surprised when it’s us who have taught them to think this way? We tell children their wellbeing is paramount, but we are also guilty of mollycoddling them. There’s a constant emphasis on their vulnerability, which is proving toxic.

Children are more restricted than ever when it comes to taking physical risks – one of the ways previous generations built resilience. Thanks to health and safety mania, leapfrog, marbles and conkers are now considered unsafe.

In March, a Leeds primary school banned games of tag as children had been getting upset and having clothes torn. There’s a campaign to stop tackling in school rugby, and to assess the safety of other contact sports such as hockey.

We drill children about healthy eating, so they grow up fearing sugary drinks and told that too much salt and fat will kill them. We weigh and measure them at primary school and then wonder why they become obsessed with their bodies.

Meanwhile, the old motto ‘Sticks and stones . . .’ is now forgotten, as we teach children that words can indeed hurt them. Bullying has been redefined to include ordinary playground verbal tussles. I remember my niece telling me, aged 11, that she was being bullied at school. I feared she was being beaten up or viciously taunted. In fact, she was being ‘excluded from her friendship group’.

I don’t doubt it was upsetting for her, but falling out with your chums is part of growing up. Through it you learn to handle the difficult interactions you will inevitably face as a grown-up.

Adults are encouraged to suspend their critical judgment, to listen to children without interrupting and not to label or criticise because of the impact this may have on their long-term emotional wellbeing.

As for child protection – that’s turned into an industry that encourages youngsters to see predators around every corner. Some play parks ban adults who are not accompanying a child. Parents are not allowed to take photographs of their children at swimming galas.

Teachers aren’t allowed to apply sun cream in case of inappropriate touching. There’s panic about what children might see on the web and endless concern over ‘stranger danger’.

And now there’s something new to fear. Conservative MP Maria Miller’s House of Commons women and equalities committee has launched an inquiry into sexual harassment and violence in schools. A report from the committee says: ‘In school corridors and playgrounds, sexually charged behaviour drives young people’s physical interactions.’ But a look at the ‘evidence’ suggests an expansive definition of what constitutes sexual harassment.

Is giving a compliment based on looks really ‘unsafe’ behaviour? If a boy pings a girl’s bra it may be unpleasant and annoying, but is it really assault? […]

I am particularly concerned we are teaching girls to see themselves as victims. […] Of course, it’s not just women who embody Generation Snowflake and not every young person fits the criteria.

But there is a strand of self-absorption and fragility running through this generation; all too ready to cry ‘victim’ at the first hint of a situation they don’t like.

We need a younger generation that’s prepared to grow a backbone, go out into the world, take risks and make difficult decisions. Otherwise the future doesn’t bode well for any of us.

And here’s a refreshing video of a Millennial on what’s wrong with her generation:

See also:

~Eowyn

Lena Dunham thinks dining hall sushi amounts to cultural appropriation

From the land of the perpetually offended.

Dunham has a weakness for fast food...who knew?

Dunham has a weakness for fast food…who knew?

From NY Post: Actress Lena Dunham is standing — and eating — in solidarity with whiny students from her ultra-liberal alma mater, who protested this year that Oberlin College was “insensitive” for serving “culturally appropriated” food in its dining halls.

The “Girls” star — who graduated from the exclusive liberal arts school in 2008 — said students are indeed justified in picking a food fight, Food & Wine magazine reported.

“There are now big conversations at Oberlin, where I went to college, about cultural appropriation and whether the dining hall sushi and banh mi disrespect certain cuisines. 
The press reported it as, ‘How crazy are Oberlin kids?’ But to me, it was actually, ‘Right on,’” Dunham told the magazine.

Gastronomically correct students at the Ohio college protested in November that phony dining hall versions of the ethnic cuisine are a slap in the face to people from those countries.

“The undercooked rice and lack of fresh fish is disrespectful,” Tomoyo Joshi, a junior from Japan, wrote in the school paper, The Review. “When you’re cooking a country’s dish for other people, including ones who have never tried the original dish before, you’re also representing the meaning of the dish as well as its culture. So if people not from that heritage take food, modify it and serve it as ‘authentic,’ it is appropriative.

Diep Nguyen, a student from Vietnam, complained, “It was ridiculous … How could they just throw out something completely different and label it as another country’s traditional food?” Oberlin students followed up with a campus protest.

But most food served in America is “appropriated” — including everything from pizza to sausages, the Washington Post pointed out in December.

In the Food & Wine interview, Dunham also admits to having a weak spot for one classic American cuisine — fast food.“My parents didn’t let us eat fast food when I was young, but on long road trips I could get chicken nuggets. So I associate them with rebellion,” she said, adding she ate them on a recent vacation. “They were more disgusting than I remembered.”

DCG

Bernie sells out; endorses one-percenter Hillary Clinton

After spending months presenting himself as an anti-establishment crusader against the superwealthy 1%, today Bernie Sanders reveals who he really is by 100% endorsing superwealthy, one-percenter Hillary Clinton who, as the wife of a former president and herself a former U.S. senator and former secretary of state, is the epitomy of the Establishment.

Hillary Bernie, two peas in a pod

Hillary Bernie, two rotten peas in a pod

Below are exerpts of phony Bernie’s endorsement speech (words colored teal are mine):

“Secretary Clinton has won the Democratic nominating process, and I congratulate her for that. She will be the Democratic nominee for president and I intend to do everything I can to make certain she will be the next president of the United States.

I have come here today […] to make it as clear as possible as to why I am endorsing Hillary Clinton and why she must become our next president. […] This campaign is about the needs of the American people and addressing the very serious crises that we face. And there is no doubt in my mind that, as we head into November, [I’m a brown-noser who will lie about anything — that] Hillary Clinton is far and away the best candidate to do that. […]

Hillary Clinton understands that we must fix an economy in America that is rigged and that sends almost all new wealth and income to the top one percent [– an exclusive club of which she and Bill are members]. […]

This campaign is about moving the United States toward universal health care and reducing the number of people who are uninsured or under-insured [because Obamacare has worked so well — not!]. Hillary Clinton wants to see that all Americans have the right to choose a public option in their health care exchange, which will lower the cost of health care [just like Obama had promised lied!]. She also believes that anyone 55 years or older should be able to opt in to Medicare and she wants to see millions more Americans gain access to primary health care, dental care, mental health counseling and low-cost prescription drugs through a major expansion of community health centers throughout this country [and greatly adding to America’s multi-trillion-dollar national debt]. Hillary is committed to seeing thousands of young doctors, nurses, psychologists, dentists and other medical professionals practice in underserved areas as we follow through on President Obama’s idea of tripling funding for the National Health Service Corps [– the money for which will come from thin air]. […]

This election is about the grotesque level of income and wealth inequality that currently exists, the worst it has been since 1928. Hillary Clinton knows that something is very wrong when the very rich [like her and her Wall St. funders like Goldman Sachs] become richer [….]

This election is about the thousands of young people I have met who have left college deeply in debt, the many others who cannot afford to go to college and the need for this country to have the best educated workforce in the world if we are to compete effectively in a highly competitive global economy. Hillary Clinton believes that we must substantially lower student debt, and that we must make public colleges and universities tuition free for the middle class and working families of this country [–the money for which will also come from thin air]. […]

I have known Hillary Clinton for 25 years. I remember her as a great first lady [who accomplished nothing as first lady] who broke precedent in terms of the role that a first lady was supposed to play as she helped lead the fight for universal health care [which was a complete failure]. I served with her in the United States Senate and know her as a fierce advocate for the rights of children [by aborting killing millions of children in their mothers’ wombs].

Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her here today.”

Source: The Hill

Hey, Bernie supporters!

It must suck to be gullible suckers like you.

~Eowyn