Tag Archives: education

America’s Schools, for Those Who Wonder Why Johnny and Shaliqua Can’t Read

by Suzanne Eovaldi, staff writer

As our nation’s public schools begin yet another year’s exercise in futility, read about the abject failure of the Pinellas County (Florida) School Board that is trapping black students in failure factories “within six square miles in one of Florida’s most affluent counties!”

An exhaustive investigation by the TAMPA BAY TIMES reveals that “Ninety-five percent of black students tested at the schools are FAILING reading or math, making the black neighborhoods in southern Pinellas County the most concentrated site of academic failure in all of Florida.” 

Continuing on, teacher turnover is so critical that “some children cycle through a DOZEN instructors in one year.” Some of the teachers just walked off of their jobs and over half asked for transfers out of these five schools: Melrose, ranked by Florida’s Department of Education as its worst elementary school; Fairmount Park comes in at No. 2; Maximo No. 10; Lakewood at No. 12, and Campbell Park at No. 15.

Black children are FAILING AT OUTRAGEOUS RATES say TIMES staff reporters in their outstanding news story. Their research traced and reviewed “tens of thousands of pages of district documents, millions of computer records and interviewed parents” to compare the Pinellas School Board’s effectiveness with other boards all over the state. “Eight in 10 [students] fail reading, nine in 10 fail math.”  For crying out loud, Mike Grego, school superintendent. Get your head out of its very dark place and DO SOMETHING, ANYTHING!

Grego carries advanced degrees in Educational Leadership. Hello. Erratic funding of black schools, ending integration, solid slippage in achievement scores over the past ten years make for a dismal achievement record for these elected officials and their administrative staff! The huge salaries paid to administrators who pile up degrees in education to get themselves out of the classroom is a big problem, IMHO. Why are these people drawing big salaries given their pathetic record? How would they like their own children to suffer in this educational fraud, year after year? Why is the State of Florida allowing any of this district’s supervisors to receive taxpayer funded dollars? Where is the Department of Education’s head in all of this? If Black Lives Matter, shouldn’t the left be yammering that the Education of Blacks does too?

But Pinellas County isn’t America’s only school district from Hell. Years ago, a long-tenured high school science teacher at a Chicago inner city school told me he and his fellow teachers always signed up for 8 a.m. classes. I was complaining because I, as a non-union teacher, kept getting skewed schedules. “Why would you do that?” I asked him. “We don’t care if they don’t show up on time,” he answered. In other words, he liked not having to teach. He said many of his black students just didn’t show up until around 10:30 a.m. and that was just fine with him.

The truant guard was so overwhelmed he wouldn’t get to the laggards for days and that was a good thing for these inner city teachers. But the teachers are not the problem. Can you envision for yourselves just what it’s like to be trapped in these classrooms day after day? You get little to no help from administration. Your students come into class with all kinds of electronic gear and if you say something they don’t like, they put you up on youtube or other social media. You have a literal fear for your own life, your car, your belongings. No matter how much or how little homework you assign, count on many students not doing a thing. They get their federal dollars and educational perks either way so they don’t care. Our students maintain so little knowledge in their “knowledge storeroom” that you have to reinvent their wheels of background data over and over.

Here, in my opinion, are just some of things that must be done:

1.) Get the federal government OUT of our schools. Stop their unfunded mandates, their money payouts for indoctrination of our young people with liberal, progressive mantras, many of which come right out of Communist playbooks for destruction of America. 2.) Stop with the social engineering, the political correctness, the silly academic mind games. 3.) Protect our schools from frivolous lawsuits that drain much needed taxpayer dollars. 4.) Get rid of outrageous administrative bloat, salary pay scales, silly, endless rounds of pointless, “make nice” meetings. Make these people do something for a change; make them go into the classrooms to help out our suffering teachers, at least with student discipline and control. 5.) Get rid of public sector unions for every public employee except police and fire. And NONE, police and fire included, may be permitted to elect their own lobbyists, i.e. elected officials who exchange union donations for union favors in our legislatures or local city and county councils. 6.) Get rid of do nothing wasters of our taxpayer dollars, namely those silly Departments of Education. 7.) Get rid of automatic union dues deductions. For decades, Democrats have maintained a death grip on our schools by exchanging political contributions raised from union dues for the votes of uncaring politicians who happen to be in bed with this toxic system known as American education. 8.) Stop grade inflation. Return the teacher’s imprimatur to student transcripts. Flunk them if they fail your course. Put pressure on the student, not the teacher, to satisfy the federal grade quotas for federal dollars, a dirty little secret no administrator wants you to know about.

Finally, yet another source finds that parents are responsible for American students ranking behind sixteen other countries. “In the U.S., kids from homes where there are more than two full bookcases score two and a half grade levels higher than kids from homes with very few books…the problem is that parents–and particularly poorer parents–aren’t empowered to make a difference.” 

One of the most important things I did in teaching 26 years full time at a Chicago area college was to require students work through the Little Brown Vocabulary workbook every day to receive grades in my composition courses. All levels of achievers received much benefit from this homework. While their vocabulary workbooks required enormous amounts of my out of classroom time, student vocabulary skills improved their overall success. BTW, this wonderful teaching tool IS NO LONGER IN PRINT! That shows you the current demand for one of the most valuable possessions in determining success in adult life—the ability to properly speak the English language.

Administrators use silly, cotton mouth “educationalese” to keep parents, especially poorer parents, well at bay. When one guy started that claptrap with me after I complained about my neighbor’s daughter walking in on her classmates performing oral sex in the girls’ restroom, I used some of those words of my own to tell him he and his other administrators needed to quit, leave, slip out the back or whatever and let someone else take over!

How often I would see these bloated, over-payed fat cats tear out of school at the end of the day, doing everything in their power to avoid their students, their stricken teachers and concerned parents. This has to stop, NOW. On our first day of school, the Palm Beach County School District had so many bus pickup failures that the local television station ran and ran missed pick-ups! Same old, same old.

As an adjunct at a well-respected area college, I had no desk, no phone, no computer, no office. I was paid $2,750 for one semester, two classes at two different campuses, four days a week, one class of turtles, one class of mainstream. Out of this enormous paycheck, the college deducted my pension, which I’ll never draw in Florida and my health insurance which I didn’t want, need, or plan to use.

Meanwhile, our local newspaper printed the salaries of the college president and his MANY administrators. President Edwin Massey is picking up an obscene HALF OF A MILLION DOLLARS every year from taxpayers, along with bloated administrators and their own six figure theft of our money. Now just multiply the effects of this cruel lunacy all over our state, our country and you can add up on you own why Johnny can’t read, write, add, subtract, get to school on time, treat his teachers with respect, etc. BTW, my pension as an English professor is with the State of Illinois’ pension system, the worst funded in the country. Nice, what? No, I’m not getting anywhere near the dough those Chicago Teachers’ Unionists are pulling in for their retirement. Nowhere near it!

Will the races ever sit down, shut up, and listen to each other?

By John Velisek USN (Ret), staff writer

It was a while ago that our Attorney General, the one and only Eric Holder, claimed that our country was a bunch of “cowards” for not wanting to discuss issues of race. I am willing to discuss them. And contrary to the opinion of race baiters and progressive, grievance mongers, I won’t bow to the narrative they have developed over the past seven years.

Most Americans believe race relations in this country are bad and deteriorating. In my lifetime I have not had any difficulty with someone of another race. Perhaps that is because I was in the military for 20 years, an organization in which progress is generally based on merit rather than skin color or, increasingly, gender. To the Obama Administration, a “conversation” on race means listen to what we say and kneel down to the altar of racial concepts which bear no resemblance to reality.

But I believe a conversation is possible; an exchange of ideas without confrontation and without blustery, meaningless rhetoric. Some points must be made:

First of all, stop with the victimhood. Every time I hear a Black whine about “Whitey” keeping him down, my question is, how? What have you done for yourself, what has your community done? I know many blacks, again while in the military, that joined because the community they lived in would pull them back every time they tried to get out. I can understand that as a hindrance. When even family and friends ridicule you because you want to do better, call you an Uncle Tom and put as many impediments in your way as possible, it becomes more difficult to get out.

Also, the Obama Administration has shown a disregard for black families in America and a total lack of empathy for young blacks who are searching for more than just a hang-out, who want a job they can use to move on, start a family, and escape their sordid beginnings.

But throwing money at the problem will not help. Since 2009, education received $100 billion from the Obama stimulus and another $82 billion from the budget. Has it done any good, where did it go? The Baltimore Public School System ranks 2nd in the nation for money spent on students at a whopping $15,700 per year. Yet “only two thirds of students graduate high school, despite this high level of spending.”

Everyone, white, black, brown, whatever color, should have the opportunity of school choice. A program in Washington DC last year pulled a great many pupils, many of them black, from the sewer of the DC school system. Most of the students were excelling and the waiting list was long. So what happened? Obama cancelled it, refusing to set aside funds. Those same low income families, empowered by an education that could lead to a productive life, have now fallen back into a system that is unionized and pathetic. How pathetic? An incredible $30,000 is spent on each Washington, DC student, every year. A few thousand more would pay for a year at Harvard. Yet only 60% graduate and their SAT scores are among the lowest in the country.

The Obama record in education, as in many other areas, is disgraceful. It is the most polarizing administration that I can remember, divisive in both class and race. Yet this is the very purpose of the progressive (socialist) agenda. The less fortunate must remain the less fortunate, their every failing blamed on the successful, that is, the White and the Wealthy. Divide the sides, and nothing gets done. So in the vacuum created there exists fear, anger and a lack of morality and ethics emblematic of the radical left.

Stop blaming white racism for the failure of black leaders. Break away from the clichés used to define the two sides. If both sides would just shut up, sit down, and honestly listen to one another, perhaps we could make real progress.

John Velisek USN (Ret.)
Twitter :sjspecialist


By Kevin “Coach” Collins

Of course this group is based in San Francisco – where else?

If this were 1915 rather than 2015, the positions taken by the Pacific Educational Group (PEG) would be properly attributed to the Klu Klux Klan. Even today if any “unapproved of” group said these things the media would ride in with their keyboards blazing to destroy anyone who even whispered what this liberal think tank is saying out loud.

PEG uses what it calls Courageous Conversations to say the things it does; but it’s still idiotic. PEG tells teachers that Blacks are, “…less likely to respond to fundamental ideas like working hard to achieve success, or being on time for school or work…”

PEG is infecting the thinking of government school, K- 12 teachers with the idea that teaching Black youngsters to be responsible and prepared to join our workforce is essentially a waste of time. This means that PEG is supporting the idea that our government schools are really operating to provide cushy “no responsibility” jobs for unionized Democrat voting teachers.

Various government school systems around the country have paid PEG millions of dollars to be given a free pass – absolution as it were – from the responsibility for seeing that Black kids learn anything useful in their classrooms.

Not at all surprising is that in recent years the Baltimore County Public School System paid PEG $427,000 to be told that they can’t teach Blacks how to fit into the greater society.

A review of the lavish manner in which Baltimore schools are funded begs the question, “And why not?” With a student population that is 83% Black and an institutional position endorsing the notion that teaching for a future in the greater (read White) society is not possible, the job of a Baltimore teacher has been reduced by the bigotry of low expectations to marching in place until retirement.

On average just 16 students fill a Baltimore classroom. The ratio of staff to pupils is just 8.3 for every 1 student.

The City of Baltimore spends an eye popping $15,483 on each of these students which places it second in the country trailing only New York City’s jaw dropping $19,770.

Across the board, Baltimore’s schools are far better equipped than most “White” schools. They have modern theaters, Olympic sized swimming pools, free musical instruments and “free” lots of other stuff.
Why then would Baltimore’s schools, that are populated by Black students and run by Black staff, want to pay PEG for its advice to not bother teaching its kids that being on time for work is essential to future success? Unions? Democrats? Low expectation bigotry?


The real casualties in the war on poverty

by George Spelvin,  staff writer

“Blacks are different” is a generalization being made by a long time public defender who goes by a pseudonym in order to speak freely and protect himself and his family from danger. “My experience has…taught me that blacks are different by almost any measure [from] all other people,” says the public defender using the pen name Michael Smith.(1) “I have no explanation for why this is, but crime has racial patterns.”  While blacks commit many violent crimes, they commit “very few sex crimes,” the author of this outstanding report says. Crime patterns he has noticed break down into Hispanics committing mainly DUIs and sexual assault on children offenses. “The handful of whites I see commit all kinds of crimes,” says Smith, but in all of his many years as a public defender in a large Southern city, he has only represented THREE Asians, one of the being half black.
The most telling statement from this courtroom weary man has to do with why blacks are so different from all of the other defendants he has represented.  An “inability to see things from someone else’s perspective helps explain why there are so many black criminals.”(2) When Defender Smith questioned one black robbery suspect about how one of the women he and two other blacks robbed at gun point may have felt, the young male said, “What do I care? She ain’t me. . .she ain’t kin. . .Don’t even know her.”  This sentence is perhaps the most revealing in the entire essay: “They (blacks) do not understand the pain they are inflicting on others.”  Any parent out there should quickly recognize this as being a characteristic of a very young child who himself is in a world of hurt!
But the long essay by Smith delves even deeper into the sociological and psychological reasons black males are so prevalent in crime stats.  The writer says growing up without a father is a huge reason for the uncontrollable crime wave now strangling America, especially our inner cities. He said that often an appearance in court is the only time a young black male sees the man who fathered him. And that often happens because the public defender’s office has sought out the older man. Apparently, growing up WITHOUT DAD is a mitigating factor which helps get a serious offense reduced to a lesser charge. The public defender employees often have to dress their accused, even to the point of having in their offices plenty of shirts, suits, ties, proper clothing, as those accused simply do not know how to dress themselves appropriately.
What stands out is the fact that the black defendants have gotten themselves into the criminal justice system in large part because America’s false sense of charity has created and fostered a four generational class of US citizens who even though “adult” by years, are stuck psychologically in a permanently induced state of early childhood development.  Our country’s damnable entitlement culture brought about by Democrat, liberal policies is enabled by a mainstream media that will not identify this dysfunction for what it really is. In other words, as a method of obtaining votes and control, for expiation of “white guilt,” for exploitation, for whatever.

We are allowing 13% of America to abuse themselves and all of the rest of us.  Why can’t we come out and say to black defendants that no longer will we enable them to go to jail, learn prison ways, which now often include indoctrination into the Hate America mantra of the Muslim prison movement and then get out only to go back in?  “What the media only hint at is another reality: recidivism…Black men are arrested and convicted over and over.  IT IS TYPICAL FOR A BLACK MAN TO HAVE FIVE FELONY CONVICTIONS BEFORE THE AGE OF 30!” (3)
When you consider an unbelievable statistic that was actually reported this week on CNN, namely that within two years of leaving the NFL, a staggering 78% of players are bankrupt and couple that with 76% of all US sports being black dominated, you have to ask WHY? Why are we letting our political, media and educational representatives destroy our culture, our children, our country, our American way of life? “The media report that although blacks are 12% of the population, they are 40% of prison populations.” (4)

It must be asked what we have gotten for LBJ’s (adjusted for inflation) TWENTY TRILLION dollars spent on the War on Poverty?  What we’ve gotten is a permanent class of violent, offending children without fathers, a 73% illegitimacy rate, a give-me you-owe-me culture of “She ain’t me” and a display of unfeeling cruelty from which we as a nation may never recover!

SOURCE:  (1) (2) (3) (4)  http://www.amren.com/features/2014/05/confessions-of-a-public-defender

School Daze via Socialized Education

by Jerry Todd,  staff writer

I’m sure glad our Kern County (Cal) Superintendent of Schools thinks Common Core is cool. I just don’t buy the line about all the decisions being made locally or that children can be okay with wrong answers. Until they know the basics – including knowing how to write cursive – an excellent exercise in character building and left-right brain interaction – they need time to grow straight and true as children should.

The other evening, I helped a 4th grader with a 4 equation, 4 unknown math problem designed to determine if “a” was a larger or smaller number than “d.”  I didn’t see any discussion of substitution in the text – maybe it’s just me. Maybe because I didn’t get this until high school it makes me a dinosaur. Maybe our little 4th grader is not being allowed to grow as her maturity allows.

It brought to mind Hillary Clinton’s long held view from her ERA days at Wellesley that children must be raised by the state as it is not fair for them to be raised in a family. It does “take a village” after all. Sadly, her village is not Bakersfield, but a one world government. She also wrote a thesis on Rules for Radicals’ Saul Alinsky – who dedicated his now well worn Obamaesque techniques to Lucifer!

Free of Common Core, I believe we can continue to be the most productive and inventive nation in the world. We won’t survive with standardized thinkers who will never know right from wrong or the cultural and religious basis of Western Civilization vs. ill-conceived directed reading.

Few people understand the tremendous contributions of Kern County to world oil, agriculture and aerospace. Much of it – fracking – horizontal boring – oil production – irrigated agriculture are under attack by groups funded by George Soros and supported by Democrats at state and federal levels. No community with its own challenges should be subject to waiting for a nod from some ignorant bureaucrat. Education and problem solving takes place in the midst of real world challenges.

Education is first a family responsibility – then the community – never the federal government – if for no other reason it costs 4 times as much to run education from a totalitarian “progressive” federal bureaucracy with its corrupt union cadre compared to our community turf. With the Internet, choices in education have expanded far beyond the leftist/jihadist doctrinaires that have taken over the process.

Sadly, the teachers’ colleges have inculcated Marxist, anti-Constitution/free enterprise ideologies into their common cores. We’ve been paying for it for some time with somewhat brainwashed administrators and teachers. It’s sad, because very few ever enter this field with nefarious intent. I’m surrounded by great teachers, including my wife.

This nation didn’t get where it is – in spite of 100 years of “progressive” attacks – by being under totalitarian rule.