Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Multiple Choice: None of the Above

This post is based on this Our Interesting Times Podcast:

In the podcast, Dr. Joseph Farrell is interviewed on the subject of Common Core.

Dr. Farrell wrote a book on the subject: Rotten to the (Common) Core: Public Schooling, Standardized Tests, and the Surveillance State

Standardized Testing in America has a troubled history. Its agenda has long remained veiled behind "expert opinions" and "latest studies." The future of American education stands in a tradition of social engineering, data mining, pseudo-psychology, and dumbing down classroom strategies.

Dr. Farrell noticed two things when serving as a university professor in Oklahoma:

  • The capabilities of the average college student has declined markedly,
  • Among the students with the worst abilities were the education majors.

In his work, Farrell reviews the reasons behind these failures of our education system. Unlike many works that focus on the flaws with Common Core standards, Farrell's book focuses on the assessment process.

Farrell has several main objections to the assessment process:

  • Students who take them are often cleverer than the test preparer. This leads to poor questions where students are forced to try to guess what is in mind of the questioner.
  • Particularly in the softer sciences like sociology and history, students are forced to agree with an official narrative in order to pass. By making test takers to conform to a standard narrative, the test turns into something akin to a loyalty test.
  • This type of test design punishes finer, subtler minds.
  • All these issues are compounded by the adaptive design of the test which bases questions on students prior answers.
  • The whole process eliminates the traditional role of a teacher and replaces it with an exam proctor.
Standardized testing and compulsory education are often said to be the bedrock of our democracy. In actuality, standardized testing undermines our democracy. The standardized tests actually are a form of massive social engineering, designed not to cultivate the best and the brightest but to extinguish free and independent thought. It was a one size fits all, cookie cutter approach designed to produce worker drones and consumers, not free thinkers.

Father of Standardized Tests

Farrell posits that while standardized tests sound good on paper, they actually have a more nefarious underside. For example, James Conant sold the idea of standardized testing as a means of identifying promising students and slotting them to elite programs:

PBS Frontline - Americans Instrumental in Establishing Standardized Tests

One of the fathers of the American educational system, James Bryant Conant believed in creating a governing, intellectual elite, chosen by standardized tests and specially educated. His ideal was a classless and democratic society.

Pre-Standardized Testing Era

Farrell contrasts this era of standardized tests to when he was a student, particularly at Oxford University during the 1980's. There he experienced a real education, one where essays were read and graded by scholars in the field and not shipped off to some testing service. Teachers were able to tailor each class to fit an individual students needs.

Leipzig Connection

Paulo Lionni in his book, the Leipzig Connection delves into the little known connection between early German behavioral psychology theories and the development of the modern American educational system:

archive.org - The Leipzig Connection by Paulo Lionni

Here is how Lionni summarizes Wundt's impact on education:

Wundt asserted that man is devoid of spirit and self-determinism. He set out to prove that man is the summation of his experiences, of the stimuli which intrude upon his consciousness and unconsciousness.

From Wundt's work, it was only a short step to the later redefinition of the meaning of education. Originally, education meant the drawing out of a person's innate talents and abilities by imparting the knowledge of languages, scientific reasoning, history, literature, rhetoric, etc. — the channels through which those abilities would flourish and serve. To the experimental psychologist, however, education became the process of exposing the student to "meaningful" experiences so as to ensure desired reactions.

In the podcast, Dr Farrell explains how Wundt's theories turned educators into mini-psychologist whose role shifted from one of teacher into someone whose purpose was to produce whatever environment that the latest educational theory deemed appropriate for students.

Instead of focusing on mastering whatever subject that they were supposed to teach, educators were required to be licensed in quasi-psychological educational theories. This licensing system massively empowered the progressives who overwhelmingly staffed them.

Early American Education

It was not until the roughly the 1840's - 50's that compulsory education began in New England. Up until then, American education was private or small community based. This non compulsory education was geared towards independent farmers and small business owners. It produced independent minded and well read students.

the whole idea of cumpulsory education was to combat or arrest that development
john d rockafeller wanted to turn thinkers into workers
general education board set up with r foundation money
he needed worker bees and consumers not thinkers
modern education part of our consumerist materialistic culture
it is part and parcel of it
horace mann start cumpulsory education experiment in massachussets
one of his goals was to empower a permanent educational beaurocracy
one way to do this is to come up with abstract standards
divorced from any empirical evidence with students and teachers
then when you have failures you blame teachers
and demand more funding for training
in the latests education theories
the result is constant failure and pleas for more money
and a neverending shift from content to methodology
be it standardized tests or teacher certification
it is all part of a huge complex
john taylor gatto
teacher who broke ranks with system
no fixing the system, the system is the problem
one size fits all mentality
slotting into age groups
no more one room school house
no mixing of ages which is not the way society is organized
miss opportunity of having to associate with people of different age groups
a teachers license is a license to practice as a parapsychologist
teachers now point out which children need medication
pathologizing normal behaviour of boys and medicating
adhd does exist but not to the extent that they diagnose
farrell found that if he taught at the correct level, in his case college
there was no room for people to be bored
are children are much more intelligent than we give them credit for
and capable of learning at a much faster pace
so they end up being bored and acting out
other countries like japan teach music and europe foreign languages much earlier
it is sweepingly innefficient and fraudulent system
that is not delivering what has been promised
it is all happening to dumb people down
and make them worker bee consumers
growing homeschooling movement
government money injected into the system
like healthcare has only served to drive up the cost
bunch of admins with 100's dollar salaries
saddling students coming out of college with huge debt and no jobs
after indoctorinating them with propoganda
both medicine and education are harvesting systems
abraham fletchner
influenced by wilhem vunt
decided he was going to implement with a progressive school
the lincoln school
emphasis is not on knowing necessary content of discipline
but on producing good citizens
john d rockafeller junior
sent his sons to lincoln school
classic example of elite surrounding themselves with people
who think like they do
people who cannot articulate an opposing point of view
with any clarity
then you end up with an elite that is ossified and incapable of adapting
we are watching this happen right now in the united states
all the rockafeller boys came out of school not enjoying reading a book
nelson found reading tedious
he went on to be an advisor to eisenhower
he was intelligence officer for latin america during wwii
he was vp under ford
yet he did not like to read
this is repeated over and over
in progressive education
reading is fundamental to higher order thinking
technocracy idea that everything we need to know is on the internet
the soviet encyclopedia phenomena
in the cloud all you need to do is hit a few buttons
to change texts to meet you political idealogy
large corp in charge of internet should not be in charge
for some reason people retain more from a physical book
there are certain things computers cannot do
it cannot replace a teacher in a classroom
mentoring and tailoring lessons to fit individual students
there was a reason they named it kindle
a corporation has a monopoly on texts
"where books are burnt, people are burnt"

abraham fletchner
fletchner report standardized american
allopathic medicine became standard
drugs surgery
obamacare and common core passed at the same time
no coincidence
founders created constitution
on one a sheet of paper with a few sentences
that anyone could understand
now teams of lawyers are involved
healthcare and education
are mechanisms to harvest wealth
empowering corporations
who is gaining monetarily from this
digitizing health records
reducing man into chattel
neil postman
"entertaining ourselves to death"
tax free foundations
have played a huge role
repub reese committee during the eisenhower admin
took over from
rene wormser, book, foundations their power and influence
modern equivalent of old medievel orders like the templars
like the templars they are tax exempt
and are able to retain intergenerational wealth
allows wealthy to control how wealth is used tax free
allows them to drive agenda
various committees during the 50's
reese keefauver mccarthey
all were investigating penetration of us gov't
noone has studied this phenomena as whole
norman dodd catherine casey carnegie foundation
subject country to series of shocks to fundamentally change and merge with soviets
carol quigley "tragedy of hope"
wormser - these foundations have shown inordinate influence over us education.
vast social engineering project to remake america how it wants to be.
science of coercion by christopher simpson
project mockingbird cia infiltration of us media
1950' educational testing service, chauncy
contracted by CIA conant to identify personality types
mk ultra
standardized test is a form of mind control
a loyalty test
means of social engineering
common core are individually adaptive tests
developed by psychologists
not philanthropic foundations
they are lobbying groups
foundations tearing down culture
modern art
frankfurt deconstruction technique
if you break everything down
you are doing this to substitute and artificial system
and keep certain people in power
assualt on individual persons
they sponsor ugliness
the ugliness reflects their souls
david rockafeller
their is a group of people
that view themselves as masters of the universe
with no allegience anything remotely humanizing
culture is the real battle not politics
trying to drive world into inhuman, ugly state of affairs
ultimately cannot suceed because humans are not wire that way
they are subtle
antonio gromci italian communist
communism would not work with economic leveling
it would need to occur with cultural leveling
must be anti traditional in every conceivable way
the long march through the institutions

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