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Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Adios, CSCOPE: Texas Abolishes Pre-Fabricated Leftist Lesson Plans

By Rick Pearcey • May 21, 2013, 12:16 PM

Eric Owens reports at the Daily Caller:

The Texas Education Service Center Curriculum Collaborative -- the entity that administers CSCOPE -- announced Monday that it has agreed to cease production of lesson plans for its much-criticized online curriculum system.

Beginning Aug. 31, 2013, school districts in the Lone Star State will no longer be permitted to use any existing CSCOPE lesson plans. CSCOPE itself will be far from dead, however, and other features of curriculum system will continue unchanged. . . .

Critics had persistently protested that the curriculum is riddled with cultural relativism and downright leftist assumptions, particularly in history and social studies.

They pointed to lesson plans informing kids in the state’s public schools that Islam and communism are awesome.
. . . Students also learned that the Boston Tea Party was a terrorist attack, that Christianity is a cult and that a Malthusian population catastrophe is about to overtake the planet.

In another incident, a teacher in Lumberton using a CSCOPE lesson plan allowed three female students to dress up in full-length Islamic burqas and then instructed the entire class that Muslim terrorists are actually freedom fighters.

"Danelle Ivey, a former teacher and now a Texas school board watchdog, called Monday’s announcement a 'very interesting turn of events,' but noted that CSCOPE is by no means going to disappear," Owens reports. 

"The big, obvious question, Ivey told The Daily Caller, is what happens after Aug. 31. She is optimistic that teachers will quickly learn to manage without prefabricated lesson plans," according to Owens.

Writing a lesson plan is a core competency of being a teacher; it’s not rocket science,” Ivey is quoted as saying. "It wasn’t a burden to be creative or to enrich lessons without the internet. It’s got to be a walk in the park today."

Comment: No properly self-respecting, curious professional teacher, in Texas or in any other state, will allow him or herself to rely on pre-fabricated lesson plans devised by some kind of centralized authority. This smacks of a blob-like, beehive approach to education that disrespects the God-given individuality and creativity of both students and teachers. The pursuit of excellence in education occurs on a higher, more humane plane.

It is crucial to acknowledge that human beings, created in the image of God, are called to think for themselves, to ask questions, and to examine facts and evidence carefully, and then follow that evidence wherever it might lead. Schools, therefore, whether public or private, ought to set people free on the basis of objective, knowable truth, not subject them to any kind of indoctrination, whether political, scientific, or theological (including especially those based on private, non-verifiable "revelations" or supposed "visions from God").

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