Talk:Bush administration education reform
Relocated this material which was originally posted as an article. But as it it more commentary I have posted it here.--Bob Burton 00:42, 9 January 2008 (EST) Currently, education at all levels in the United State is primarily designed to ensure the continuation of the status quo of the political and economic systems. That is maybe not all bad, but it is not allowing for the new ideas, new capacities and new impulses that each new generation brings to the earth to develop.
Education should be about uncovering the NEW human capacities that will carry us into the future, and not so much about preserving the old way of doing things. Each generation will confront different challenges and opportunities, and we cannot equip them to deal with those if they are only trained in maintaining the status quo.
When human beings are free to develop all their capacities, all of society benefits. These new capacities and talents actually then feed and create the economic and political realms in the form of new discoveries, new technologies and new solutions, so it makes sense that the politcal and economic realms should fund the educational realm, but it must do so in FREEDOM, not with agendas and strings attached.
We should never tolerate the governments telling them what to think, or where to worship - why do we tolerate the government (and big business) telling us where and how we will LEARN? Learning is in the same catagory as thinking and worshipping (or not worshipping) - it is entirely an inner soul activity that is unique in every person. It cannot be legislated to produce equal outcomes, it can only be rightfully legislated to produce equal opportunity for everyone to get an education.
After that, it should be left to the artists, the teachers who work at connecting with each individual student in a creative way. Teachers are artists because that is what great teaching is - where a teacher uses all of his/her talents to reach each child and foster growth and development on whatever level it happens to be for each student. There is nothing rote or standardized about this process at its highest level - yet we have allowed the No Child Left Behind act to create a system that prevents teachers from teaching, ties up class time in rote test preparation, and brings political agendas to the teaching arena on every level.
The corporate influence is felt in elementary and high schools in the form of the selling of advertisments on school property, soft drink machines, "educational" videos produced by corporations loaded with advertisments, hiring tutoring and testing and textbook corporations to implement the NCLB policies (which are now HUGE businesses), and according to John Taylor Gatto (author of "The Dumbing Down of America") the corporations even have a role in creating the state mandated curriculum, which stresses capitalism and other ideas beneficial to them.
Socially responsible capitalism and freedom of thought that will allow us to continue growing in our understanding of the best way to create healthy political, economic and cultural realms for our society. The stranglehold that political and economic interests currently have on all levels of our educational system needs to be transformed, and it can be transformed by working with the idea that all these edcuational activities must be fully funded in a way that acknowledges that all educational institutions have the right to independence and freedom in their work,and that by giving them that freedom, we will all benefit in the form of developing a truly educated society.
Groups and Organizations:
Stop BP 
Long Range Development Plan Resistance UCSC 
National Education Association (a.k.a.: nea) 
California Studies Association 
Phoenix Coalition to Free the UC