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Recent Comments

Re: “Prayers ended in Van Buren school

mrprincipal07 wrote,
"... check out the Science Curriculum Frameworks as to
what is supposed to be taught in Arkansas Schools."
There are two problems with this approach, mrprincipal. First, looking at the list of things that are supposed to be taught does not tell you what things are actually taught. If I covered only three of my frameworks all year long, looking at the frameworks on the website will not reveal what I (i.e. my students) missed. Second, looking at the frameworks doesn't show what needn't be taught but is anyway, like theology and creationism.

I've seen my district's Biology EOC scores. Last year's scores on evolution questions were atrocious -- most students had very round numbers. It is clear that either most of our teachers aren't teaching it or that students are refusing to learn it, or probably both because they feed off of each other.

There are laws against what Redden was doing. It's silly to think that reading the law and seeing that such behavior is illegal means that you can conclude that it didn't happen. In the same way, seeing frameworks about evolution doesn't mean that you can conclude that evolution is being taught.

Posted by gsavonarola on 05/01/2011 at 10:39 AM

Re: “Prayers ended in Van Buren school

You guys don't know the half of it. The locals are outraged, just as they were when they read the story about prayer warriors. But by outraged, I mean outraged that these actions weren't allowed to continue unabated.

Remember, these are folks who never reached that stage of child development that enables people to see things from a perspective that isn't their own. In their eyes, it's okay to violate the law as long as the violation is in their favor.

For the record, I'm a teacher. If I were a praying person, I'd pray for learning, because learning is more important than grades and test scores. (Those should take care of themselves with sufficient learning anyway.) But unless I qualify as a god, I'm not so incompetent a teacher as to think that my students' only chance of success is divine intervention. Similarly, I would think that a principal probably should try solving problems at her school proactively instead of holding hands and talking to an invisible sky daddy.

As a teacher, I can't imagine sinking that much (contract) time into selecting a verse for each student -- not to mention printing it (on school paper with school toner) -- *once*, let alone for several days in a row. I have better things to do with my time, like -- well, *teaching*.

Redden is well-respected in Van Buren. Nobody saw a problem with the clearly sectarian content in her classroom. Instead of being the black sheep who was getting away with violating the law, she was put on a pedestal in part for how she violated the law. Does this help you understand how widespread this problem is?

Posted by gsavonarola on 04/30/2011 at 2:36 PM


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