As with every event that occurs with the Neo Cons and this Administration, there is always more beneath the surface than what first appears. This excellent diary by Brenda Stewart, got me to researching what had happened to the venerable, 85 year old Scholastic Educational Materials and in what manner they were tied to this phony Documentary film to be shown by ABC on September 10th and 11th next week. The Scholastic Materials had always been the premier educational resource company for reading and literacy teaching materials in my entire 61 years.
Like peeling a very rotten onion, the more I looked the worse it got. My outrage and anger built to the point where I am writing my first diary and I honestly don’t know if I am even rational enough to be fully coherent.
First I checked out the link to Scholastic on line and found they were supplying course materials for teachers and educators to use. What became clear as I searched was that Scholastic had provided these “lesson plans and materials” either for FREE, or at a reduced cost, as History or Current Events classes, for cash strapped local schools at the Junior and High school levels.
Now as a former teacher, it is my universal view, that teaching is THE highest sacred trust adults have toward our children. Apparently education has now become conflated with Propaganda and real learning is a thing of the past.
If you scroll down on the Scholastic Site, you will see PDF files for Resource Sheets. Resource sheets are tools teachers use to provide information and give an overview of a specific topic. Part One describes Middle Eastern Country’s using Republican Talking Points to describe the Muslim Culture, the players, events and terrorists. Not at all historically accurate! Part II provides descriptions of Governmental Departments with a strong deference that clearly favors George and the President as King.
Just under that are the Discussion/Debating PDFs. Normally these are suggestions. In this particular lesson plan they are mandatory. Part One contains a question clearly designed to instill hatred and prejudice toward Muslims:
Do you think the event described above is a case of racial profiling or a search based on evidence? Provide examples from the miniseries to support your answer. (emphasis is mine)
No independent thinking or life experiences allowed as part of the discussion/debate in this lesson plan. Part II of the activities tells the student to read articles in MSM and listen to news on talk radio. It then instructs students to list which are the most or least truthful compared to the documentary.
Next my research took me to see who the current corporate owners of Scholastic Education Materials are. Imagine my dismay when I discovered this venerated educational firm was now partnered with The American Petroleum Institute. In the May/June 2005 edition of Mother Jones there is an excellent of list of 40 other organizations affiliated with, or funded by Exxon/Mobile, but American Petroleum Institute is not mentioned. Not happy with insidiously invading grades K-12 in the school system, this oil company is now using their partnering with Educational firms to target our toddlers.
With Neo Cons and this Administration, the first question I always ask is “Cui Bono?” For the Administration the obvious slant of this “FAUX DOCUMENTARY” just before an election is obvious. What about the oil companies? Heaven knows they have received gazillions in tax breaks, price gauging and other legislative gimmicks during the last 5 ½ years! Then I remembered I had merely glanced at a diary at Kos this morning. Normally I stay away from conspiracy theories. However an investigation by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) on the collapse of World Trade Center 7 is pretty mainstream and scientific. Of course the next logical question became why and for what reason would the oil companies even care about that? I leave conclusions, if any, to you.
Hopefully every parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, and adult brother and sister is as sickened and disgusted by this heinous infiltration of our kids educational system as I am. Now I was raised and believe in the adage that you are “known by the company you keep”. Instead of just ranting and screaming (as I did for a couple of hours), I invite each of you to take the following actions:
1. First thing tomorrow morning contact your Superintendent of Schools office and your child’s school. Find out if they purchased the materials from Scholastic or if they were provided gratis. Let them know in no uncertain terms you will not tolerate the dissemination of propaganda in lieu of facts – PERIOD.
2. Contact each of your local School Board members, and insist on having a special meeting called, if one is not scheduled in the near future. Attend that meeting and adamantly insist that there be a resolution, bylaw, amendment (or whatever mechanism used by your Local School Board) that there be a moratorium on ALL purchases and receipt of Scholastic Materials in your school system, until Scholastic understands that they will be penalized by the “company they keep” and until they find more acceptable associates.
3. Inform ALL Democratic candidates from your area of what has been done to our precious school systems and your child’s heritage and opportunity for getting a decent education.
4. If you have the time, inclination or energy, LTE’s are a great way to inform other parents as to how your local school systems have been hijacked.
It is my fervent hope that by using the power of the “Netroots”, we can put an end to these infiltrations of our chidren’s education.