Brave New Schools - Introduction
Remember the frog that landed in a pan of water and stayed until it boiled? Had the pan been hot, the frog would have noticed and hopped out. But the water felt cool at first, and the frog sensed no danger. It simply relaxed and conformed to the gradual change. Subdued by the rising heat, it grew too sluggish to act. By the time the water boiled, the frog was dead.
I know that carefree feeling. When my oldest son entered the system over two decades ago, our local elementary school seemed safe and friendly. A fatherly principal welcomed him, and friendly teachers used the same old teaching techniques that taught me to read and multiply long ago: phonics, drills, memorization.... How could I suspect that these proven teaching methods would be replaced by classroom experiments using children as guinea pigs for social engineering? I had no way of knowing that truth, facts, logic and history would soon be replaced by an unrelenting emphasis on myths, feelings, imagination and politically correct stories. I saw no reason to believe that our values would soon be ridiculed, redefined, and subjected to unthinkable tests.
If someone had told me that globalist educators were determined to mold our children into a compliant workforce for a New World Order by year 2000, I wouldn't have believed them. If a friend had warned me that political leaders would use our schools to transform the world into a "global village" held together with the cords of pantheistic oneness and a computerized surveillance system, I might have laughed. How could our elected representatives agree to something so outlandish? That could never happen in America. This was the land of the free! After all, we have our Constitution. No one can take our rights--or our children--from us!
Ten years later my third son started school. By that time, I had read enough textbooks and talked with enough teachers and parents to know that our schools were changing. The more I researched, the more alarmed I became. The foundational goals of education had turned upside-down not only in my community, but across the country and around the world. Socialization--the "right" attitudes, beliefs, and behavior--had replaced academics as the main outcome of education. In spite of the nice-sounding promises, individualism was out; group thinking and universal values were in. The minds of children were being molded through the latest techniques in behavioral psychology.
If this monstrous system is put in place by AD 2001 as planned, all children will be monitored through a national computerized data transmission system designed to build a permanent, personal file on every child. No one will be safe from the watchful eyes and controlling arms of the new system -- not children taught at home or in private schools, not their parents, not anyone.
This transformation transcends political as well as national lines. The main body of President Clinton's massive education law, Goals 2000, was first drafted by Education Secretary Lamar Alexander during the Bush Administration and introduced to the public in 1991 as America 2000. The two, Goals 2000 and America 2000, are essentially the same "outcome-based" system. Today, many of its functions and proposals have been transferred into private, non-governmental groups or merged with the Department of Labor and the Department of Health and Human Services. This makes sense, since the strategies for molding the global workforce stress mental and emotional "health", not factual learning.
It is impossible to summarize the worldwide educational agenda in a few pages. You wouldn't believe me. That is why I wrote this book. But before you start reading it, let me give you some helpful suggestions:
First, preview the Chronology of Events in the back of the book. It will clarify the globalist agenda and show the steps that brought us to the dawning of an international education system.
Second, scan the Glossary. It defines and explains new words and concepts that are part of educational restructuring. These words will be highlighted when you first meet them in the chapters of the book. Their true meanings may surprise you.
Third, look for answers to the questions below. Those answers will help you respond wisely to people who, like the proverbial frog, have become so accustomed to the changes that they fail to see the danger signs. They may ask you--
What can be wrong with global oneness?
Don't we need international education?
Won't multicultural education build understanding and tolerance?
Why do Higher Order Thinking Skills do the opposite of what they promise?
Teaching environmental consciousness and political activism is essential to creating a better world, isn't it?
Why shouldn't the whole community be partners with parents in raising children for the 21st Century?
Fourth, don't blame the local teachers. They are caught up in a movement they can't stop. Because their intentions are usually good, they often feel confused or angry when confronted by parents who question their efforts. They simply don't understand how lessons that seem so good to them could seem so bad to others. As you read, look for practical tools to help them see the difference.
If you are a Christian teacher being pressured to cooperate with the new system, the facts in this book may discourage as well as encourage you. Know that when God puts His people in the heat of the battle, He also promises to meet all their needs. Armed with truth, faith, and the essential facts, you will be ready for your local battle.
Fifth, be alert to the difference between well-meaning local educators and the educational establishment (national and international) who have planned the transformation. The latter call themselves "change agents" and are training an army of like-minded revolutionaries for our local schools.
"We need change agents in charge of those schools, not preservers of entrenched interests and encrusted practices," wrote Chester Finn, Director of the Educational Excellence Network, who helped former President Bush and Lamar Alexander promote America 2000.
These change agent are trained to twist the rules to win public support. As North Carolina school superintendent Dr. Jim Causby said in his 1994 speech at the Second Annual Model Schools Conference in Atlanta,
"We have actually been given a course in how not to tell the truth. How many of you are administrators? You've had that course in public relations where you learn to put the best spin on things."
To stay ahead of critics, leading educators keep changing the labels. Thus, what many know as OBE or Outcome-Based Education is also called Quality Learning, Total Quality School Restructuring, Performance- or Achievement-based Education.... It doesn't matter. Whatever the label, it refers primarily to the national/international system that demands specific "outcomes" from students and uses the psychological strategies of Mastery Learning to achieve the planned result. John R. Champlin, a leading change agent, summarized the deceptive plan in the Journal of Quality Education,
"While OBE has become a "tainted" term... many of the significant practices and concepts will continue under another label, one that will not take away even a particle of what a well-conceived, well-managed OBE program offers... We need to learn our lessons well -- for keeps this time."
To sell OBE or to the public, change agents promote it as "local control" and "decentralization." They are not telling you the truth. As you will see in Chapter 7, what students must learn at the local level will be determined at the national level.
The chart below shows how educators "put the best spin" on their deceptive plans. Ponder the three sets of meanings. They expose the heart of the transformation.
traditional or assumed meaning
misleading or stated meaning
Real meaning behind
the misleading promises
World Class Standards
New standards needed for global challenges.
"High standards" needed for the 21st Century global economy
Low standards for literacy, comprehension and factual knowledge. "High standards" for the beliefs, attitudes, and group thinking needed to prepare human capital for the 21st Century.
Students must master key subjects, i.e., learn the content.
Given enough time, all students can learn--and achieve the "same high level."
Psychological strategies for conditioning students to new beliefs, values, and ways of thinking. Failure to meet attitudinal, not factual, standards means drilling until students demonstrate the "right" responses.
Educating students according to planned results
A systemic plan to prepare all students to meet high standards.
The national delivery system for Mastery Learning. A multi-level process for setting educational standards at the national level and making sure local schools prepare students individually to meet affective standards.
Learning about other cultures
Learning to respect and understand all cultures and lifestyles
"Becoming" a multicultural person, open to the pluralistic beliefs and lifestyles of all except those who cling to Judeo-Christian values.
Elected school boards represent local parents.
Local schools choose and manage their own learning programs.
The lowest level of a new centralized bureaucracy. A selected panel of supportive citizens will make sure students learn what national standards and tests require.
Finally, don't forget that Our God still reigns. He has the world in His hands, and nothing can hinder His eternal purpose or timetable. When you trust and follow Him, you can be confident that "your Lord who goes before you will Himself fight on your behalf."
Next: Chapter 1- New Beliefs for a Global Village
2 Corinthians 12:9-10; Philippians 3:13, 19; Deuteronomy 31:6.
Chester Finn, Jr., "Reinventing Local Control," Education Week (January 23, 1991); 32.
Sponsored by the International Center for Leadership in Education. For more information, see June 26-29, 1994, in "Chronology of Events" in Part 2.
Cynthia Weatherly, "The Second Annual Model School Conference," The Christian Conscience (January 1995); 36.
John R. Champlin, "News and Views from the Institute for Quality Learning," Journal of Quality Learning, April 1995, p. 7.
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