Rollins College student Marshall Polston

Student’s email to Muslim Professor published — class a ‘brainwashing session about sharia law’

In The College Fix column titled Here’s the epic email suspended Christian sent his Muslim professor to challenge her flawed lessons Zach Swaim, from the University of Indianapolis, obtained a full copy of the email from the Rollins College student Marshall Polston, which was written a month after Muslim professor Areeje Zufari said the “crucifixion of Jesus Christ was a hoax and that his disciples did not believe he was divine.”

The email followed shortly after the professor’s slam on Polston’s first assignment for the class, a 52 percent grade.

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Marshall Polston (right) on a visit to Egypt. Photo: Facebook

Here is the full email:

We need to talk as soon as possible over phone or in your office because you have been extremely unfair to me and pursuit a ruthless program of hostility in your recent grading simply due to the fact that I disagree with you on your inherent bias and clandestine theological apologies. I’m actually a nice person but not when I’m viciously attacked. I’d be just as happy to go to the dean about this issue.

I’m emailing you about the first essay in your Rollins class. You recently failed me with a 52% despite the fact that I followed all the guidelines listed, covered all the topics and asked you directly about the problem areas. I specifically asked you about sources in person as a result of your request that the paper be an analysis and not research. Everything I wrote came from personal memory and research or first hand experience in my travels with the government, personal visits with friends, teaching experiences or philanthropic efforts in the Middle East.

Quite frankly the grade you assigned to me exposes your a true agenda which is to silence me in class. As I told you before I’m not interested in speaking anymore. But since you’ve decided to carry a blitzkrieg out against me, I may have to speak up in regards to your extreme bias and not necessarily to the class but to the dean. You’re one of the most incompetent professors I have ever seen in my entire life.

It’s very clear you have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about. You may have a college degree but you belong in a reform school.

First you conflate the immaculate conception and virgin birth which are totally different. Then you state that middle eastern Jews were Sephardic when in fact they are mostly Mizrahi Sephardic Jews only emigrated from Spain to North Africa and Istanbul and we’re NEVER native.

I could go on and on and on. Everybody knows that you’re a failure as a Professor — Rest assured I’m not the only one!!! I have dozens of examples to pull from that I’ve noticed during the class.

I think it’s great to be a theological apologist but not in a secular setting — I don’t know whether this was just a mistake or not so I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. In order to stop a textual embarrassment in the Quran from coming to light in class you proceeded to ignore the facts when I asked a pertinent question about Mohammed. He had an adopted son which divorced his wife so he could marry him and although you finally admitted it was twisted, it took until I looked up the verse that you believed me.

Your bias is blatantly evident in your misinformation about the historical Jesus and moreover manifested in the lack of discussion about Wellhausen’s documentary hypothesis (with you taking the theological position that Moses wrote the first five books of the Torah). No one takes either position that you gave in the archaeological or secular biblical fields.

Also your brainwashing session about sharia law at the United States of Rollins ignores what the vast majority of people in countries like Egypt and Iraq really believe in regards to misogyny, homophobia or religious freedom.

I agree that sharia law can be reformed but in the context of the seventh century, let’s not jump to utopian conclusions about sharia law’s original implementation in society. I understand that you are much more liberal Muslim which is great but quite frankly it astonishes me your hypocrisy. On the one hand you report me to the dean for correcting you while you were indoctrinating students with false information. On the other hand a Muslim student in class cracks a joke about chopping someone’s body parts off and you do nothing. Yes I have witnesses – I’m not the only one who has a concern about your agenda and overt bias.

It’s really cowardly of you to shut me down in the middle of class or lie to the dean but I should be careful when saying that because that would be insulting to cowards. There’s something seriously wrong and depraved about you when you think my intellectual conversation is more threatening than the despicable comments about decapitation made by the student in question! SICK!

I hope we don’t have to escalate this issue and you’ll stop this crusade against me. I would really hate to get in contact with some national media personalities that I’m good friends with but I’m going to have to take it there or pursue legal options if you don’t stop your harassment toward me.

The College Fix reported it repeatedly tried to obtain an explanation from the college. Eventually it issued a statement that the school welcomes “all religious and cultural beliefs” and values “diversity of opinions.” It concluded, “There will be no further statement.”

Read more…

Robby Soave from Reason.com reports:

But according to the student, Marshall Polston, he was actually punished for disagreeing with the professor, and for voicing concerns about deeply offensive statements made by a classmate. This classmate, an unnamed male Muslim student, reportedly said that under shariah law, beheading was the appropriate punishment for gays and adulterers. [Emphasis added]

RELATED ARTICLES:

Rollins College Allegedly Suspends Conservative After He Challenged Islamic Student Who Threatened Gays

Rollins Muslim Professor who suspended Christian student defended Jew-hatred and aided lover In radicalizing kids

Areeje-Zufari

Orlando’s Muslim Professor Areeje Zufari — Profile of a ‘Radical Islamic Supremacist’

Areej Zufari photo

Areeje Zufari

This column provides the background of Professor Areeje Zufari, a Professor of Humanities and Coordinator of the Humanities Speakers Series at Valencia College located in Orlando, Florida. Zufari gained attention when she told her students “that the crucifixion of Jesus was a hoax and that his disciples did not believe he was ‘divine.’”

But there is much more to this story.

Joe Kaufman, an investigative journalist for FrontPage Magazine and Chairman of Americans Against Hate a civil rights organization and terrorism watchdog group, filed an affidavit No. CT-003545-04 naming Professor Zufari and her then husband Maher Ghawji a medical doctor based in Memphis, Tennessee. The affidavit reads in part:

8. Maher Ghawji has admitted to his wife of being a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, a violent political movement whose members are sworn to “defend Islam” with their “blood.” He accepted this status with a group of friends, during a trip they had made to Cairo, Egypt (Exhibit 1). He left Syria around 1982, the year a government-led massacre took place in the town of Hama – a Brotherhood stronghold – which resulted in the deaths of 10,000 to 40,000 people (Exhibit 2). Following the massacre, members of the Brotherhood fled Syria, some leaving for the U.S. or Europe, some joining up with Osama bin Laden to fight in Afghanistan (Exhibit 3).

9. During his court deposition, on June 4, 2004, Maher Ghawji admitted to the court and to his wife of being a Wahhabi, an adherent to a fanatical religious form of Islam emanating from Saudi Arabia (Exhibit 4 – page 26).

[ … ]

11a. Maher Ghawji’s son, Louis, has written about how his father wants to “get rid” of all Jews and how his father wants him [Louis] to become a suicide bomber. In an e-mail he sent to a friend on June 24, 2004, he wrote, “And because he [Maher Ghawji] wants to get rid of all Jews and everybody should be muslim and if not all others are idiots and blah blah blah muslim allah blah blah blah wants me to go blow up myself so he would be proud of me…” (Exhibit 5).

11b. Both of Maher Ghawji’s sons have discussed how their father hates Jews. In the July 2, 2004 chambers interview with Louis and K.K. Ghawji, the children state the following: K.K. Ghawji: “So, but also, when he watches the TV and hears about Jews, he doesn’t – he’s like saying I hate the Jews, it is – ” Louis Ghawji: “He’s always wondering like every time there is one Jew dead, it is always a big fuss…” (Exhibit 5).

12. About Palestinians becoming suicide bombers, Maher Ghawji stated in his June 2004 deposition, “I think this will generate this, I’m not sure, spirit of blowing themselves up or feeling in despair; and when you’re in despair evidently like they live, and these people has no education, fifty percent jobless, have no running water after the invasion of Israeli to the Gaza Strip and West Bank, destroy all their infrastructure, evidently they feel miserable; and I said these people — I don’t see why not.” (Exhibit 4 – page 82).

Read the full affidavit…

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Areeje Zufari at her wedding to Dr. Maher Ghawji. Photo: Joe Kaufman.

According to Jacob Engels from the Central Florida Post:

…Zufari had given Polston a failing grade without explanation, after the two disagreed over Zufari proclaiming during the first class that the Crucifixion of Christ was a hoax… as was the idea that Jesus’s disciples did not think he was “divine.”

Polston reached out and demanded an explanation from the professor, but she instead reported him to the Dean of Safety for making her feel “unsafe.”

The straight-A student would ultimately be suspended on March 24th and then face outlandish allegations by Zufari, later that day.

She accused him of skulking around in the brush outside the classroom, but video surveillance from a Dr. Phillips restaurant and neighborhood gate cameras prove Polston was nowhere near the school at the time.

Now the Central Florida Post has uncovered a lawsuit filed in Orange County, FL in 2007 that contains bombshell allegations against Zufari and provide insight into her radical Wahhabi leanings. SEE THE LAWSUIT BELOW.

Read more…

Zufari Lawsuit by Jacob Engels on Scribd

EDITORS NOTE: Ms. Areeje Zufari Amazon.com profile notes:

Professor and writer Areej Zufari was born in the United States to Middle Eastern parents. Her interest in Middle Eastern culture began during her childhood in Arkansas where she also discovered her love for writing and painting. She earned a Masters degree in Liberal Studies from Rollins College and a Bachelors degree from Southern Methodist University. After 2001, she took on the demanding role of Director of Media and Communications for the Islamic Society of Central Florida. Her experiences speaking in the media revealed to her the numerous misconceptions Americans hold about the Middle East and Islam. Inspired by the importance of education to promote peace, Zufari enrolled in Hartford Seminary and earned a graduate certificate in Islamic Chaplaincy. Now, as a professor at Valencia College in Orlando, Florida, Zufari teaches Humanities courses full-time and writes during her weekends and summers. [Emphasis added]

Discover the Networks reports:

Imam Muhammad Musri, who oversees seven mosques from the Islamic Society of Central Florida, believes that Arab Christians claiming to have converted from Islam “are lying and . . . were actually Christians all along.” “They are using tales of conversion,” he says, “to get financial backing from evangelical ministries.” Taking a jab at Christianity’s many Protestant denominations, he adds, “We don’t want the Muslims to end up with 700 determinations of Islam.” Musri’s speeches are sold and distributed by the Islamic Society of North America.

Ms. Zufari’s Faculty FrontDoor profile reads:

arab-spring 22

Ms. Zufari’s Faculty FrontDoor profile picture titled “Arab Spring”. Graphic courtesy of Ms. Zufari and Valencia College.

Welcome! I am a Professor of Humanities at Valencia Community College’s East Campus.

I teach the Middle Eastern Humanities, 20th Century Humanities, Renaissance & Baroque Humanities.

Human creativity is one of the most fascinating subjects, and Humanities courses allow us to jump into the creative fields in an integrative manner.

My courses emphasize student interaction and critical thinking. If you are interested in taking one of my courses, please send me an email. I would love to hear from you.

Phone: 407-582-2349

Email:azufari1@valenciacollege.edu

Office: East Campus

Ms. Zufari’s elective Middle Eastern Humanities course syllabus reads:

Course Description:

The course covers topics such as Middle Eastern religions, philosophy, literature, architecture, visual arts, music, and the effects of modernity on the Middle East.

Major Topics:

Students will have the opportunity to study the culture of the Middle East in an integrated manner that focuses on the dominant ideas and major trends, including:

  • Characteristics and Distinctions of Middle Eastern Culture
  • Themes, styles, and impact of Middle Eastern Literature
  • Concepts and impact of the religion of Islam
  • The effects of religion on Middle Eastern peoples
  • Characteristics and trends in Middle Eastern Art
  • Characteristics of Middle Eastern Architecture
  • The Effects of Modernity on the Middle East

Texts:

  • Beyond the Headlines: A Deeper Look at Middle Eastern Culture by Areej Zufari

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Christian Student Challenge’s Muslim Prof’s Claim Jesus Wasn’t Crucified, Gets Suspended

Iowa State University asks students to write about 9/11 jihad attacks from jihadis’ perspective

Georgetown University and Radical Islamists: It’s a Family Affair – IPT News

Georgetown University and Radical Islamists: It’s a Family Affair

The case of Yale

‘This Is Not a Debate’ – Yale’s fight for free speech

Australia: Muslim leader says people who leave Islam should be put to death

Miami-Dade-Public-Schools-Logo1

VIDEO: Miami-Dade School District Diverts Funds from Teacher’s Salaries to Construction

Alllchemist posted a video exposing collusion between the United Teachers of Dade union and the Miami-Dade School District to divert funds from teacher’s salaries to pay for construction projects.

According to alllchemist:

Why Has UTD Been Silent About MDCPS Failure to Fund Teacher Salaries?

For over a decade, United Teachers of Dade has echoed the claim that MDCPS “just didn’t have the money” to honor contractual raises.

Teacher Shawn Beightol has pointed out that Tallahassee has increased funding to MDCPS for years, but MDCPS has lowered local taxes (to promote political careers as “tax cutters”), creating its own pseudo-crisis.

UTD has done nothing.

In fact, UTD has colluded with MDCPS to convince the public that a financial crisis prevented the raises.

In the fall of 2015, MDCPS and UTD together unlawfully changed a legislatively designated “grandfathered salary schedule.”

A group of teachers incorporated as “The Grandfathered Inc” to challenge MDCPS’ and UTD’s unlawful collusion in court and to set the record straight.

In September 2015, MDCPS Superintendent Carvalho spoke at the
Kendall Federation of HOAs.

The Grandfathered Inc was there to publicly challenge MDCPS’ campaign to impoverish teachers.

Teacher Shawn Beightol asked Mr. Carvalho a series of questions including:

  1. Haven’t other taxing entities claimed a surplus from increased property values? (yes)
  2. Hasn’t MDCPS issued letters to employees explaining how to apply for foodstamps & welfare? (yes)
  3. Hasn’t MDCPS actually LOWERED its tax rate (millage) to create a pseudo-financial crisis? (yes)

The superintendent answered “No” to the first and last questions and ignored the second question.

Watch the video to read the transcript of the court hearing in which we destroy MDCPS’ claim that they cannot honor the contract because of financial shortages.

The Grandfathered Inc has clearly shown that MDCPS and UTD together have deprived teachers of their raises by deliberately under-taxing the county, by diverting hundreds of millions in salary money to construction, by failing to access $750 Million in millage available, and by failing to access sales tax funds available.

We, the Grandfathered Inc, are pushing our lawsuit forward by filing the class action lawsuit in civil court this month (March 2017). We need you to help by signing on to our class and by donating to our cause. You can take these two actions by visiting our facebook page “Grandfathered Lawsuit”

Attorney General Ken Paxton

CAIR bullies Texas AG for challenging a public school’s use of a classroom ‘exclusively’ for Muslim prayer

Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas is allowing Muslims to have a dedicated classroom to pray during the school day.  See Liberty High School March 3, 2017 Wingspan newspaper article below titled Classroom becomes prayer room.

muslim prayer room liberty high school

Muslim prayer room at Liberty High School.

WFAA 8 ABC reported on March 19, 2017 Paxton’s office outlines concerns over ‘prayer room’ in letter to Frisco ISD

DALLAS – The office of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton wrote a letter to Frisco ISD Friday expressing concern over a “prayer room” in one of the district’s schools.

Liberty High School has an empty classroom where students can pray during the school day. Deputy Attorney General Andrew Leonie’s letter to Frisco ISD’s superintendent questioned the legality of the prayer room, saying the room is dedicated to Islamic students and excludes other religions.

“Liberty High School’s policy should be neutral toward religion,” the letter reads. “However, it appears that students are being treated different based on their religious beliefs. Such a practice, of course, is irreconcilable with our nation’s enduring commitment to religious liberty.”

The letter references a March 3 article in the Liberty High School Campus Wingspan — the school’s student-run news outlet — that says the prayer room “addresses the religious needs of some students.”

CAIR Texas issued a news release on March 19, 2017 titled CAIR Condemns Texas Attorney General’s ‘Cheap Islamophobic Publicity Stunt’

(AUSTIN, TEXAS, 3/19/17) The Texas office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Texas) today condemned what it called a “cheap Islamophobic publicity stunt” by that state’s Attorney General Ken Paxton, whose office has raised objections to the use of a spare classroom by Muslim middle school students to perform their daily prayers.

Paxton’s office sent the Frisco school district superintendent a letter Friday expressing “concerns” that the classroom is being used by Muslim students. In a news release, Paxton’s office falsely stated: “Recent news reports have indicated that the high school’s prayer room is. . .apparently excluding students of other faiths.”  .

Ironically, it appears that CAIR is “falsely” accusing “Paxton’s office of falsely stating: ‘Recent news reports have indicated that the high school’s prayer room is. . .apparently excluding students of other faiths.’”  The high school’s own article about this situation posted below clearly states that this classroom is used to provide a place for Muslims to pray throughout the school day.

Florida Family Association has prepared a short email for you to send to thank Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton for challenging the special prayer room for one religion.  A copy of the email will also be sent to Liberty High School Principal Scott Warstler and the Frisco Independent School District Board Members.

For contact information please click here.

Liberty High School March 3, 2017 Wingspan newspaper published the following article titled:  Classroom becomes prayer room

At many public schools, religion isn’t talked about openly.

But here on campus, there’s a room dedicated to the religious needs of some students.

Every day during lunches, room C112 is utilized as a prayer room.

While most religions do not dictate specific times to pray, Islam is different in this regard.

“By praying five times a day, which includes movements such as bowing and prostrating where you actually place your forehead and the tip of your nose on to the floor and also facing a specific direction, not only shows uniformity, in terms of how Muslims pray together and come together for that purpose,” Islamic Association of Collin County Youth Director Ryan Hilliard said. “But even more importantly it shows that they’re willing to put their entire body and their entire mind and their soul into this act and be able to focus on that moment where they’re able to have this conversation with God, when in many other places they would not be able to do so.”

The campus prayer room has been available for students since 2009.

“This is my seventh year at Liberty, my first year it kind of started when a core group of students were leaving campus every Friday for Friday prayer,” Principal Scott Warstler said. “Their parents would come pick them up, so they may miss an hour and a half to two hours to two and a half hours of school every Friday, so I met with those students and a couple of their parents and suggested if they would be okay if the students were able to lead the prayer at school as a group, and we gave them a space to do that so they didn’t have to be in a car traveling thirty minutes each way on a Friday missing an hour, hour and a half, of class.”

It  started with a small group of students in one of the AP conference rooms, but as more and more students got involved, it was moved to a classroom.

“I think the trademark of what makes Liberty High so great is our diversity and in how our students respond to the different cultures and diversity on campus,” Warstler said. “Like I’ve said, this is the seventh year that we’ve been doing this and we’ve never had one issue. You know we have  other religious student groups that meet maybe before school or maybe after school. As long as it’s student-led, where the students are organizing and running it, we pretty much as a school stay out of that and allow them their freedom to practice their religion.”

RELATED ARTICLES:

Muslim Primary School Students Threaten to Behead Teacher

Appeals Court Rules Texas School Board Can Pray Before Meetings

EDITORS NOTE: Readers may send an email to Liberty High School Principal Scott Warstler and the Frisco Independent School District Board Members. Please click the below link, enter your name and email address then click the “Send Your Message” button. You may also edit the subject or message text if you wish.

Click here to send email to thank Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton for challenging the use of public school classroom exclusively for Muslim prayer.

Homeschooling

Homeschooling: Restoring Parents’ Right to Raise Their Children as God Intended?

I am a black Tea Party guy; speaker, singer, activist and prolific writer. I became exposed and educated about home-schooled kids while traveling the country on 14 Tea Party national bus tours. Home-schooled kids are strikingly smarter, better educated, calmer and better behaved. I also noticed that every home-schooled kid I spoke with looked me in the eye. They seemed happy with a subtle confidence.

Years ago, I spoke to a class of black students at a Baltimore middle school. I asked each student to state their name. Stunningly, I had to ask several students to repeat their name numerous times before I understood what they were saying. They mumbled. I thought, why would their teacher allow such lazy speech? It is the bigotry of low expectations.

Most parents do not realize that Leftists are at war with traditional America. For decades, they have used public education to brainwash your kids, transforming them into stealth operatives against the principles and values of their parents. Remember when Michelle Obama encouraged students to help the federal government by monitoring family conversations for comments Leftists deem racially insensitive? A Leftist produced anti-gun ad encouraged students to break laws by stealing parents’ guns and handing them over to their teachers; making your kids stealth operatives for the Left’s agenda

Teaching reading, writing and arithmetic became minor goals a long time ago. The number one priority of public education is producing good liberals. Leftists dominating public education has given us students who hate their country; white kids taught to feel guilty; black kids taught to feel justified in resenting whites. They’re taught that same sex marriage is normal and opposing it is the same as racial bigotry. They’re taught that having babies harm the planet and recycling is saintly. Our kids are also taught that their parents owning guns contributes to gun violence and opposing illegal immigration is racist

Independent critical thinking has also been removed from public education K through college. Teachers and professors demand total brain-dead submission to their Leftist point-of-view. Free thinking students are demeaned and even physically assaulted by fellow students

A white friend of mine said her son came home from middle school in tears. He was filled with guilt, taught that his evil white ancestors were extremely mean to native Americans, blacks and women. Today, that white kid is a 20 something year old America hating communist. He believes white males are the greatest source of evil in the world.

My millennial relative planned to visit South Dakota. I suggested she visit Mount Rushmore. She replied venomously, “I wouldn’t cross the street to visit those guys!” Thank you public education’s distorted teaching of U.S. history.

For decades Leftists have used public education and the federal government confiscating your kids to indoctrinate them to embrace their religion of Liberalism while banning the God of Christianity from schools. Speaking of religion, why are public schools teaching the virtues of Islam? 

Incredibly, school boards have usurped authority to teach your child to celebrate and even experiment with homosexuality starting in kindergarten. Parents are forbidden to opt out their child. Could anyone have imagined a day in America when teachers and government bureaucrats would mandate that your child be taught the government’s views regarding sex. My late mom would be in the principals office in a flash, “Are you crazy? How dare you!”

The Bible instructs parents, “Train up a child in the way it should go and when he is old he will not depart from it.” Leftists say screw the Bible and parents, we demand your kids!

In the Bible, when the angels came to visit Lot, Sodomites demanded that Lot turnover the angels that they might have their way with them.

Leftist educators, using the iron-fist of government, demand that parents turnover their kids that they might have their way with them. This is why Leftists are hellbent on criminalizing home-schooling. Remarkably in America, parents have been arrested for home schooling

Trump’s religious freedom order is a step in the right direction, returning stewardship of children hearts and minds to their parents as God intended.

children raised hands classroom

School ‘Accountability’ Gone Wild

Children should not be measured like products of “factory style” schools, where we sort out the “defective” student products and throw them away. They should be educated based on their individual, God given spark of genius, to be the best they can be. When you test a monkey, a fish, and an elephant on their ability to climb a tree, the elephant and the fish will be left behind, but they, too, have unique talents.

“Holding teachers accountable” is a popular phrase. I am not supporting unions, but the design of incentives based on student scores is the major flaw in this plan. You get what you reward. Teachers (and administrators) will only teach to the test and game the system any way they can. Curriculum is narrowed, and cheating is rampant.

Teachers no longer control of what they teach and how they teach it. Administrators are openly calling them “facilitators” and not teachers. They are unfairly measured on elements out of their control.

Learning is clearly in decline, so well-meaning legislators want a means of escape from failing public schools, strangled in bloated bureaucracy, by creating vouchers or charter schools.

But unless we remove Common Core and the federal monopoly, the focus on charter schools and vouchers is meaningless, as all education is the same, with the same tests, the same curriculum, and the same counterproductive incentive system. When federal and state dollars are used to bludgeon schools to conform or lose funding, there will be no real education.

The move toward home schooling shows that parents are awakening to the fact that the legislature has sold our children down the river for the age old motives, MONEY and POWER. Tallahassee and DC are the swamps of education lobbyists selling their new testing and conformity toys to ignorant and/or greedy legislators who don’t understand or don’t care why our children are learning less every year.

We must break that mold and end Common Core and high stakes testing. We can use nationally normed testing on sample groups or even infrequently to determine progress without wasting SO much money and time that we have no time to learn. Teachers used to give tests, correct the tests and give a grade at the end. They were trained and certified to do that. They were managed, promoted and fired by locals who could observe their skills.

Unions and bad education schools made this difficult and the legislature responded by taking away their control. To get at this problem, other countries are good examples. Finland, with the best education results, trains their teachers better and longer. They are paid more and are well respected. Children do not waste their time on standardized testing until they are 16. They don’t even start school until they are 7. There are 15 minute breaks between classes in high school so that students can stretch and be prepared for learning. There is more recess in lower grades. All this and their results are outstanding!

Then there is the “annoying” US Constitution which is violated daily by the very people who have taken an oath to protect and defend it at all levels, from school boards to the President of the United States. The Constitution is crystal clear about the duties of the federal government in Article 1 section 8. They are “clear and defined.” There is NO mention of any duty whatsoever in the area of education. Then the “capper” is the 10th Amendment, which simply states that anything NOT identified in Article 1, section 8 belongs to the States or to the People. Our founding fathers had good reason for designing our federal government to be the servant and not the master of the sovereign states.

People who solve their problems and define their own success are more likely to achieve great things. Our country grew great because individuals were free to determine their own destiny. We must unleash that human potential once again by freeing our children from the slavish conformity now demanded through illegal and unconstitutional federal control of education.

Our state legislators were supposed to guard us against an intrusive federal government. They need to stand against unlawful overreach. They need to nullify laws that violate our Constitution such as the ESSA, No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top. Instead, they crumble under the fear of “loss of federal money.” Their knees buckle when the USDOE coerces them with dollars and then they end up with unintended consequences and unfunded federal mandates like Common Core.

News Flash! Federal money comes out of my left pocket and State money comes out of the right. The federal government is taking money from my right pocket to the left and then keeping their cut like a mob protection racket.

Where is our Eliot Ness? Who in our state legislature will stand up to the “mob” in Washington D.C.?

burning money

Money Won’t Save the Failing Public School System by Daniel J. Mitchell

The story of the private sector is that competition generates ever-more output in ways that bring ever-higher living standards to ever-greater numbers of people.

By contrast, the story of the government is inefficiency and waste as interest groups figure out how to grab ever-larger amounts of unmerited goodies, often while doing less and less.

Obama spent buckets of money to supposedly boost government schools.

In some cases, where government is doing bad things (stealing propertysubsidizing big corporationsfleecing poor people, etc), I actually favor inefficiency.

Sadly, the government seems to be most inefficient in areas where we all hope for good results. Education is a powerful (and sad) example.

The Costs Keep Rising

story in the LA Weekly is a perfect illustration of this phenomenon.

A little more than a decade ago, something unexpected happened. The district’s enrollment, which peaked in 2004 at just under 750,000, began to drop. …Today, LAUSD’s enrollment is around 514,000, a number that the district estimates will fall below half a million by 2018.

Anyone want to guess whether this means less spending?

Of course not.

L.A. Unified’s costs have not gone down. They’ve gone up. This year’s $7.59 billion budget is half a billion dollars more than last year’s. …Today, the district has more than 60,000 employees, fewer than half of whom are teachers. …LAUSD’s administrative staff had grown 22 percent over the previous five years. Over that same period of time, the number of teachers had dropped by 9 percent.

If these trends continue, maybe we’ll get an example of “peak bureaucracy,” with a giant workforce that does absolutely nothing!

Based on his famous chart, the late Andrew Coulson probably wouldn’t be too surprised by that outcome.

Government Makes the Problem Worse

There’s also lots of waste and inefficiency when Uncle Sam gets involved. With great fanfare, President Obama spent buckets of money to supposedly boost government schools. The results were predictably bad.

It was such a failure than even a story in the Washington Post admitted the money was wasted (in other words, there wasn’t enough lipstick to make the pig look attractive).

One of the Obama administration’s signature efforts in education, which pumped billions of federal dollars into overhauling the nation’s worst schools, failed to produce meaningful results, according to a federal analysis. Test scores, graduation rates and college enrollment were no different in schools that received money through the School Improvement Grants program — the largest federal investment ever targeted to failing schools — than in schools that did not. …The School Improvement Grants program…received an enormous boost under Obama.

The administration funneled $7 billion into the program between 2010 and 2015… Arne Duncan, Obama’s education secretary from 2009 to 2016, said his aim was to turn around 1,000 schools every year for five years. ..The school turnaround effort, he told The Washington Post days before he left office in 2016, was arguably the administration’s “biggest bet.”

It was a “bet,” but he used our money. And he lost. Or, to be more accurate, taxpayers lost. And children lost.

Some education experts say that the administration closed its eyes to mounting evidence about the program’s problems in its own interim evaluations, which were released in the years after the first big infusion of cash. …Smarick said he had never seen such a huge investment produce zero results. …Results from the School Improvement Grants have shored up previous research showing that pouring money into dysfunctional schools and systems does not work.

History Repeats Itself

Indeed, I’ve seen this movie before. Many times. Bush’s no-bureaucrat-left-behind initiative flopped. Obama’s latest initiative flopped. Common Core also failed. Various schemes at the state level to dump more money into government schools also lead to failure. Local initiatives to spend more don’t lead to good results, either.

Gee, it’s almost as if a social scientist (or anybody with a greater-than-room-temperature IQ) could draw a logical conclusion from these repeated failures.

And, to be fair, some folks on the left have begun to wake up. Consider this recent study by Jonathan Rothwell, published by Brookings, which has some very sobering findings.

…the productivity of the education sector depends on the relationship between how much it generates in value—learning, in this case—relative to its costs. Unfortunately, productivity is way down. …This weak performance is even more disturbing given that the U.S. spends more on education, on a per student basis, than almost any other country.

So what’s going wrong? …In primary and secondary public education, where price increases have been less dramatic, there has been a decline in bureaucratic efficiency. The number of students for every district-level administrator fell from 519 in 1980 to 365 in 2012. Principals and assistant principals managed 382 students in 1980 but only 294 in 2012.

The conclusion is stark.

Declining education productivity disproportionately harms the poor. …unlike their affluent peers, low-income parents lack the resources to overcome weak quality by home-schooling their children or hiring private tutors. Over the last 30 to 40 years, the United States has invested heavily in education, with little to show for it. The result is a society with more inequality and less economic growth; a high price.

Incidentally, even private money is largely wasted when it goes into government schools. Facebook’s founder famously donated $100 million to Newark’s schools back in 2010.

So how did that work out? As a Washington Post columnist explained, the funds that went to government schools was basically money down the toilet.

It is a story of the earnest young billionaire whose conviction that the key to fixing schools is paying the best teachers well collided with the reality of seniority protections not only written into teacher contracts but also embedded in state law.

But there is a bit of good news. Some of the money helped enable charter schools.

There is a more optimistic way to interpret the Newark experience, much of which has to do with the success of the city’s fast-growing charter schools. …The reasons are obvious. Unencumbered by bureaucracy and legacy labor costs, charters can devote far more resources to students, providing the kind of wraparound services that students like Beyah need. An analysis by Advocates for Children of New Jersey noted “a substantial and persistent achievement gap” between students at charter and traditional public schools: “For example, while 71 percent of charter school students in Newark passed third-grade language arts tests in 2013-14 — higher than the state average of 66 percent — only 41 percent of students in Newark traditional public schools passed those tests.

The Wall Street Journal also opined about this topic.

What happened with the $100 million that Newark’s schools got from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg?” asks a recent headline. “Not much” is the short answer. …The Facebook founder negotiated his gift with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and then-Mayor Cory Booker in 2010, and it flowed into Newark’s public-school system shortly thereafter.

The bulk of the funds supported consultants and the salaries and pensions of teachers and administrators, so the donation only reinforced the bureaucratic and political ills that have long plagued public education in the Garden State.

The editorial explains that this isn’t the first time a wealthy philanthropist squandered money on government schools.

In 1993, philanthropist Walter Annenberg sought to improve education by awarding $500 million to America’s public schools. …But the $1.1 billion in spending that resulted, thanks to matching grants, accomplished little. An assessment by the Consortium on Chicago School Research on the schools that received funds reached a dismal conclusion: “Findings from large-scale survey analyses, longitudinal field research, and student achievement test score analyses reveal that . . . there is little evidence of an overall Annenberg school improvement effect.

The report did not explain why the campaign failed, but the reason is fairly obvious: The funds wound up in the hands of the unions, administrators and political figures who created the problems in the first place.

Fortunately, not all rich people believe in wasting money. Some of them actually want to help kids succeed.

In 1998, John Walton and Ted Forstmann each gave $50 million to fund scholarships for low-income children to attend private schools. More than 140,000 students have attended schools with graduation and college matriculation rates that exceed 90% instead of going to the failing schools in their neighborhoods. Earlier this summer, hedge-fund manager John Paulson pledged $8.5 million to the Success Academy charter-school network, where 93% of students are proficient in math, compared with 35% of their traditional public-school peers. His gift will allow more such schools to open. The financier Stephen Schwarzman and his wife, Christine, a former attorney, donated $40 million to help endow the Inner-City Scholarship Fund, which provides financial aid to needy children attending Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York.

Which is a good segue into the real lesson for today about the type of reforms that actually could boost education.

I’ve shared in the past very strong evidence about how school choice delivers better education results. Which is what everyone should expect since competition is superior to monopoly.Well, as explained in another Wall street Journal editorial, it also generates superior results at lower cost. Especially when you factor in the long-run benefits.

…a study shows that Milwaukee’s landmark voucher program will save taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. …the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty, a nonprofit that advocates for limited government and education reform, decided to look at the relative cost and benefits of choice schools. And, what do you know, it found that students participating in Milwaukee’s voucher program will provide the city, state and students nearly $500 million in economic benefits through 2035 thanks to higher graduation and lower crime rates. …More education translates into higher incomes, more tax revenue and a lower likelihood of reliance on government welfare or other payments. Meanwhile, greater economic opportunity also prevents young adults from turning to crime.

Wow. It’s not just that it costs less to educate children in private schools. There’s also a big long-run payoff from having more productive (and law-abiding) citizens.

That’s a real multiplier effect, unlike the nonsense we get from Keynesian stimulus schemes.

P.S. School choice doesn’t automatically mean every child will be an educational success, but evidence from SwedenChile, and the Netherlands shows good results after breaking up state-run education monopolies.

And there’s growing evidence that it also works in the limited cases where it exists in the United States.

P.P.S. Or we can just stick with the status quo, which involves spending more money, per student, than any other nation while getting dismal results.

P.P.P.S. This is a depressing post, so let’s close with a bit of humor showing the evolution of math lessons in government schools.

P.P.P.P.S. If you want some unintentional humor, the New York Times thinks that education spending has been reduced.

Reprinted from International Liberty

MIKE

New York Teacher Alleged to Have Sexually Assaulted Students With Knife – May Still Be at Large

This Project Veritas video exposes attorney Mitchell Rubinstein from the New York State United Teachers describing a case in which he defended a teacher he names “Mike,” who was alleged to have forced students at knife-point to give him oral sex. The teacher was eventually convinced to resign, but was not convicted and therefore could still be at large.

WARNING ADULT CONTENT:

As you may have seen, our investigation took a turn for the worst in that we came across information that was so offensive, we had to regroup and take action of our own to locate this man who is known only as “Mike.”

Again, I can’t get into the allegations in this column as they are despicable.

It appears a very disturbing forced-sex crime has been committed against a child, and it also appears that the system is designed to keep these crimes from even coming to light, let alone the perpetrators being brought to justice.

For over a year, this footage has kept me up at night.

While maintaining the pace of our investigations throughout 2016, we continued to search for Mike and spent considerable time and resources trying to find him.

I had off-duty police, private investigators, and Project Veritas staffers to comb through countless databases and records trying to find this man.

We even called every pet store that caters to parrots (“Mike’s” pet), in multiple states.

Our search was exhaustive, and as our last lead went cold, I decided that our team needed reinforcements.

That’s where you come in.

This story and our video needs to be shared with as many people as possible.

lee school board logo

Time for the Florida Legislature to Term Limit School Board Members

Term limits are very popular in America. One way to “drain the swamp” is to term limit members of Congress. The surge in term limit legislation has been at the state level.

The Florida Legislature in 2016 passed legislation making it the first in the nation to call for an Article V amendment convention exclusive to the subject of putting term limits on Congress. The memorial, HM 417, passed the State House and State Senate by a unanimous voice vote.

In 1992 Florida passed Amendment 9 term limiting members of the state legislature passed. The amendment was passed with the approval of 76% of voters. Amendment 9 offices covered are: Florida Representative and Senator, Lieutenant Governor, Florida Cabinet, and U.S. Senator and Representative. [Emphasis added]

So while the Sunshine State awaits an Article V amendment convention perhaps Floridians should look at term limiting local school board members?

One state is already on its way to term limiting school board members. In a column titled “Term limits for school board members would get public vote under House measure” by Ed Anderson, from the Louisiana Times-Picaune reports:

Voters across the state would decide this fall whether their local school board members should be subject to a three-term limit, according to a bill approved by a House committee Wednesday.

steve_carter_crop.jpg

Rep. Steve Carter, R-Baton Rouge.

The Committee on House and Governmental Affairs voted 14-4 for House Bill 410 by Rep. Steve Carter, R-Baton Rouge, sending it to the full House for more debate.

The bill is a major education initiative by the state’s biggest business lobby, the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry; the Council for a Better Louisiana, an education advocacy group; and the chambers of commerce across the state.

[ … ]

Carter said the bill allows local voters to decide the issue, not the Legislature. “Fresh blood is what is needed in education,” he said.

“Every four years, voters have an opportunity to decide to keep or replace school board members,” argued Nolton Senegal, executive director of the Louisiana School Boards Association. He said 60 percent of the board members turned over four years ago.

According to Ballotpedia:

The following statistics about school board elections in 2014 apply to the top 1,000 public school districts, as measured by student enrollment:

  • A total of 2,189 school board seats were up for election in 670 school districts in 37 states.
  • 75.51 percent of incumbents whose seats were on the ballot ran for re-election.
  • 35.81 percent of those incumbents ran unopposed.
  • 124 school districts held elections in which all the incumbents ran unopposed.
  • Only 30 districts with 58 seats up for election featured no incumbents running.
  • 81.31 percent of incumbents were re-elected, including unopposed incumbents.
  • 70.88 percent of incumbents who faced challengers won re-election.
  • 61.40 percent of all seats up for election were retained by incumbents.

There are 67 county school boards in Florida. They wield great power to tax and spend, primarily via property taxes and local referendums. Incumbents are the problem as they become entrenched and typically vote unanimously on issues important to parents, students and teachers. Many parents, students and teachers feel disenfranchised. School choice helps somewhat to empower parents and students.

Another way to “drain the education swamp” is to impose term limits on local school boards.

RELATED ARTICLE: My Local School Board May Begin Silencing Parents Over Transgender Agenda

RELATED VIDEO: Candidate Trump promises to support Term Limits for members of Congress.

harvard-university

Harvard University Smears Websites that Aren’t Hard-Left as ‘fake news’

“As previously reported, liberal journalists have struggled to come up with a concise definition of ‘fake news,’ even as they declare war on it. Some liberal journalists have lumped in legitimate news organizations with objectively false websites, leading to concerns that a crackdown on ‘fake news’ will be used by liberals to silence their conservative counterparts.”

Exactly so. There are real fake news sites on the Harvard list, sites that publish wholly false or unsubstantiated stories simply as clickbait in order to generate revenue.

But to add to them The Daily Caller, The Drudge Report, Breitbart News, The Washington Examiner, The Washington Free Beacon, Independent Journal Review (IJR), The Blaze, and The Weekly Standard (Never-Trump hysteric Bill Kristol must be climbing the walls over that one), as well as Judicial Watch, The Geller Report, FrontPage Magazine, Jihad Watch and others makes the agenda clear: Harvard, and the Leftist intelligentsia in general, is trying to stigmatize and marginalize every point of view except its own.

Merrimack College’s Melissa Zimdars and those who take her list seriously at Harvard and elsewhere apparently think that if they call every perspective they dislike “fake news,” they will be able to destroy the influence of such perspectives, and attain the hegemony of their own point of view. The only problem with this is that their own point of view contains so many obvious falsehoods and fallacies (Islam is a religion of peace, poverty causes terrorism, etc.) that it will continue to falter at the bar of reality, and people will continue to look to these so-called “fake news” sites for the truth.

Note also that Zimdars labels Jihad Watch as “Unknown.” This classification she explains thusly: “Unknown (tag unidentified): Sources that have not yet been analyzed (many of these were suggested by readers/users or are found on other lists and resources). Help us expand our resource by providing us information!”

So a site that purports to identify “fake news” relies on unsubstantiated rumor, hearsay and innuendo to make its classifications. Doesn’t that make Zimdars’ Harvard-endorsed list a quintessential example of…fake news?

“Harvard Smears Conservative Media As ‘Fake News,’” by Peter Hasson, Daily Caller, March 10, 2017:

A list of “fake news” websites recommended to students by Harvard University labels almost every leading center-right website as an illegitimate source of news.

The Daily Caller, The Drudge Report, Breitbart News, The Washington Examiner, The Washington Free Beacon, Independent Journal Review (IJR), The Blaze and The Weekly Standard are all on the list, deemed illegitimate for reasons such as “clickbait,” “bias,” or “unreliable.” Liberal news sources like BuzzFeed, The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Vox.com and Salon aren’t on the list.

The list, compiled by Merrimack College associate professor Melissa Zimdars, is recommended to students as part of a Harvard library guide on “Fake News, Misinformation, and Propaganda.” The list is linked under a banner titled, “Identifying Fake News Sites.” A comment next to the link calls the document a “Huge list of fake news sites.”

As previously reported, liberal journalists have struggled to come up with a concise definition of “fake news,” even as they declare war on it. Some liberal journalists have lumped in legitimate news organizations with objectively false websites, leading to concerns that a crackdown on “fake news” will be used by liberals to silence their conservative counterparts….

RELATED ARTICLES:

Toronto imam says Muslims will eventually kill all Jews

Orlando judge revokes bond for widow of Pulse nightclub jihad mass murderer

headstart program

Head Start Programs Are Setting Kids Up for Failure by Annie Holmquist

In recent years, support for preschool education has grown by leaps and bounds. After all, who wouldn’t want to help adorable little kids get an early jump on success?

But the enthusiasm for Pre-K dampened a bit with the release of two studies, one from 2012 which studied children in a Head Start program and another from 2016 which studied children in Tennessee’s statewide preschool program. The Head Start study found that its children were more inclined to behavioral problems than those who did not participate. The Tennessee study, on the other hand, found that participants did worse academically several years into school than those who had not participated.We need to study the effects of preschool education more before we wholeheartedly commit to public Pre-K programs.

The news that these Pre-K programs may hurt rather than help was not received favorably by preschool advocates. And according to a recent Brookings Institute article by scholars Dale Farran and Mark Lipsey, Pre-K advocates have done their best to discredit these studies.

But as Farran and Lipsey explain, the attempts to dismiss these findings “are based on incorrect and misleading characterizations of each study.”

For starters, the Head Start study is dismissed on the grounds that some participants ended up in the wrong study group. But according to Farran and Lipsey, such occurrences happen in many scientific studies, and as such, are controlled for in the final statistics. The authors caution that this does not change the fact that children who participated in the Head Start program exhibited more aggressive behavior, the most concerning factor of the study.

Secondly, Farran and Lipsey explain that the Tennessee study is dismissed on the grounds that it is not a “high-quality” program such as those in major cities like Boston and Tulsa. However, when sample sizes are taken from each of these programs, Farran and Lipsey note that there is no major difference between the academic outcomes of each program. In other words, because of the similarity in the outcomes, those who dismiss the Tennessee preschool program as being low quality must also dismiss the programs they hold up as models.

Given this information, does it seem we need to study the effects of preschool education more before we wholeheartedly commit to public Pre-K programs? Is it possible that young children would learn more and have greater long-term success if they weren’t subjected to the classroom at such early ages?

Republished from Intellectual Takeout.

floridaedu

FLORIDA: Bills introduced empowering parents to ‘review, object to and approve instructional materials’

On February 23rd and 24th, 2017 critically important Instructional Materials companion bills were filed in the Florida House and Senate. These curriculum bills will restore local control, empowering parents and taxpayers a meaningful place in the process for reviewing and acquiring of all textbook and online materials used to teach public school children.

Sen. Tom Lee and Rep. Byron Donalds are the sponsors for SB 1210 and HB 989. Think of them as “fixit” companion bills to a very “well-intentioned Senate Bill passed into law in 2014. However, the 2014 law was not implemented by a single school district.  The original intent was to establish each school board to be constitutionally responsible for the instruction materials used in their respective districts and to establish an open, transparent process for reviewing, raising objections to and approving instructional materials used with K-12 students.

When passed these “fixit” bills will restore the original intent in 5 key ways:

  1. Require each school district shall implement a transparent Policy/Process within their District whether they acquire from the State list or create their individual acquisition program.
  2. Provide a definition of quality materials and requirement for providers to meet Florida existing laws.
  3. Tighten the definition of instructional materials to include “on-line” materials.
  4. Give each District School Board greater flexibility to use instructional materials that meet or exceed current Florida Standards.
  5. Expand a parent’s right to object to include the rights of all taxpayers.

At the heart of these fixit bills are the enhanced definition of “quality materials”. Every product you buy as a consumer has an explicit set of quality standards. Obvious examples: the car you drive and the cellphone and computer you use. Not so with the 100’s of millions of dollars Florida spends on textbooks.

Today, the materials are provided by Pearson PLC and one or two other large publishers. They are riddled with political and religious indoctrination; revised history teaching our children they are victims of oppressive and outdated founding principles; and age inappropriate sexually explicit materials aimed at destroying family values.

See the documentation at www.floridaCitizensAlliance.com – Search for “Objectionable Materials Report”


Background

SB 864 (FS 1006.283) was the K-12 Curriculum Bill signed into law by Governor Scott in July of 2014.

Its purpose was to:

  • Assign each school board the constitutional responsibility to select and provide adequate instructional materials.
  • Require each district to create a transparent review policy/process allowing parents to review instructional materials and raise objections if the material was not accurate or was objectionable.
  • Allow School districts to implement their own selection and acquisition programs as an alternative to buying from the State approved lists.

NOTE: It contained numerous loopholes that resulted in many School District ignoring the law.

2017 Companion bills SB 1210 and HB 989 fix the loopholes:

  • Require that each District School Board shall implement a transparent Policy/Process within their
  • District whether they acquire from the State list or create their individual acquisition program.
  • Provide a definition of quality materials and require all materials meet Florida existing laws (notes).
  • Tighten the definition of instructional materials to include “on-line” materials.
  • Give each District School Board greater flexibility to use instructional materials that meet or exceed current Florida Standards.
  • Expand a parent’s right to object to include the rights of taxpayers.

Bottom Line: This law will empower parents and community taxpayers a meaningful seat at the table to significantly improve the quality of instructional materials in public schools.

Note 1: Florida has a very good statute FS 1003.42 2a-f that requires the teaching of our founding principles and “historically accurate materials”. This statute is not being followed today in Florida as many textbook providers distort and reconstruct our history to promote a political agenda.
Note 2: FS 847.011 and FS 847.012 clearly prohibit age inappropriate sexually explicit material in K-12 public schools.

Definition of quality materials spelled out in SB 1210 and HB 989

When passed into law, these Instructional Materials companion bills will restore local control of curriculum to each school district, give a meaningful voice to parents and the local community in the selection process for instructional materials, and require instructional materials used in the classroom meet the following criteria:

a. Be research-based, and be proven to be effective in supporting student learning

  1. Provide a non-inflammatory, objective, and balanced viewpoint on issues
  2. Be appropriate to the students’ ages and varying levels of learning
  3. Be accurate and factual
  4. Be of acceptable technical quality
  5. Shall strictly adhere to the requirements of Florida Statute 1003.42(2) US Constitutional Founding values and principles
  6. Not contain pornography or sexually explicit content as is otherwise prohibited by Florida Statute 847.012(3).

The Detailed 11 page report of objectionable materials in Florida Schools documenting extensive political and religious indoctrination, revisionist history, issues with APUSH, pornographic material and destructive math pedagogy can be found at http://floridacitizensalliance.com/liberty/?s=objectionable+materials+report

flca logoABOUT THE FLORIDA CITIZENS ALLIANCE (FLCA)

Florida Citizens Alliance is a grassroots Alliance working with 80+ grassroots organizations committed to dramatically improving the outcomes for our Florida children. FLCA helped draft this legislation and we are strong citizen advocates for its passage. Our Goal is simple- to unleash the individual learning potential of every child! We invite your support. Subscribe to our website. Adding your voice makes our collective voice louder!

school materials

Why Florida Students and Teachers Need House Bill 11

Florida Representative Scott Plakon (R-Longwood) filed House Bill 11 late February which seeks to reform unions with ailing memberships below 50%.

A Senate companion bill, Senate Bill 1292, was filed earlier in the week by Senator Dennis Baxley (R-Ocala).

Unions representing law enforcement, correctional officers, and firefighters are exempt from this legislation, but they maintain over 90% membership given that they adequately represent their members and would not have anything to worry about if they were not exempted.

The unions that would be impacted by this legislation would be teachers’ unions, namely the United Teachers of Dade – often regarded and termed the “Useless Teachers of Dade” by some of their members. Their membership density is around 44%; if clerical and security were not factored, the density would be much lower.

As expected, UTD put out an email meant to scare the membership and to increase their numbers. They claim the Contract would be voided, yet the legislation does not explicitly say that.

As Shawn Beightol points out in an email, what would the bargaining unit have to lose by the demise of UTD given that they seemingly collaborated and colluded with Miami-Dade County Public Schools on a horrendous evaluation system (IPEGS), loss and elimination of salary steps and the grandfathered schedule, reduced services, increased class sizes, lack of representation, etc.

Criticism of UTD is rampant on an M-DCPS Facebook Group:

Mario Morales:

The Union sure has balls. They sent out an email asking for support against an “anti union legislation” that was introduced recently. So I’m thinking, “get us our raises that you have sold us out on, and our steps that you agreed with MDCPS to eliminate and then, only then, will I CONSIDER supporting you.”

Andrew Beninati:

Well written. I dropped the union back around 2006 when they signed that tentative 3 year contract that was based on state funds, or something like that. I knew then it would never come to fruition. They then froze our salaries for 3 years. I saved, and continue to give myself a raise by not contributing.”

Isaac Castineira:

UTD has some how managed to delete their google reviews. So I felt obligated to refresh my review and here it is. I hope you would join me and post your google review of UTD.

I am the son of a teamster and believe in the power of unions. But UTD is not a union, it is group of individuals that give excuses for their repeated failures and collect dues. I would give zero stars if that was an option. They have a history of selling its members out for some unknown reason. On the 2015 contract they eliminated the step schedule even though the law was on their side? So teachers with years vested in the step schedule are now left guessing how much they will be making at the end of their careers. Way to go UTD. So if you like throwing your money away then join.

Jose Cernada:

I’m still a member and I’m seriously thinking about dropping my membership. This Union is a joke and a total travesty. I feel totally misrepresented by them. This UTD President and her staff do absolutely nothing to defend teachers. They ought to be sued for misrepresenting their members. I feel I’ve been scammed out of my hard earned money for all these years.”

Some people may ask why not seek changes within UTD through the electoral process or activism?

Members like Shawn Beightol, Trevor Colestock, Eugenio Perez, and Ceresta Smith have tried but unfortunately failed as UTD is resistant against change as they seemingly want to collect dues and not provide effective services in return.

Shawn Beightol and Ronald Beasley tried to reform UTD, but they were brought up on charges and expelled from the union.

Trevor Colestock, a 17-year member and former steward, exposed a massive cheating scandal at Miami Norland Senior High School, and was illegally transferred from the school over three years ago and is awaiting his trial while Brenda Muchnick, disciplined for giving students the answers, has been working at Norland for the past three years since her suspension.

Colestock states,

These actions are clearly anti-union and anti-labor. The union member who participated in the cheating was fired, but the non-union member who did the exact same thing was suspended without pay for 30 days and sent back to work, whereas I a union steward have been illegally displaced per state law and the Koren decision issued by the Florida Supreme Court which basically prohibits transfers in situations like this. To top it off, the United Teachers of Dade has been stunningly silent. If UTD could not and would not stand up and speak out for me, a decorated and accomplished steward who was correct on the merits with a supporting report by the Miami-Dade OIG and a M-DCPS DOAH brief, who will they stand up and speak out for and protect?

As teacher unions like UTD seem unwilling to reform themselves in terms of clean ethical governance, House Bill 11 makes perfect sense and just may force them to clean up their act, especially in the areas of compliance with professional development procedures, teacher observation and evaluation improprieties, test cheating, and treatment of whistleblowers for the betterment of the students they purport to serve.

Very troubling is the ongoing legal saga of Eugenio “Geno” Perez and his election lawsuit, which is slated for trial in August 2017 in Miami-Dade Civil Court.

In March 2010, Mr. Perez lost the UTD presidential election to former UTD President Karen Aronowitz amid questionable electoral practices and irregularities. To seek the truth and to end electoral practices that many union members deemed as fraudulent, Perez filed suit to obtain the online voting records. If UTD and Karen Aronowitz committed no wrongs, why has UTD spent well over $350,000 of the hard working dues-paying members’ money in keeping Geno Perez from the electoral records?

If UTD is willing to spend the members’ dues money to oppose a lawsuit that seeks to fix a broken electoral process and bring justice to the folks who may have committed electoral fraud, then why should it be able to exist with less than 50% membership and keep the majority of the bargaining unit under its thumb?

Like Mr. Perez, Ceresta Smith ran for UTD President in 2013 and 2016 and lost under very questionable results. Despite her activism over the years, Ms. Smith and her supporters have been marginalized by UTD.

Meanwhile, former UTD Executive Board member Christine Kirchner simulated orgasms, discussed masturbation, and gave massages to students five years ago and kept her teaching job and UTD office.

On top of all this, UTD Vice President Antonio “Snow” White, as well as another UTD member, have been disciplined by the state for cocaine possession begging the question, “Does UTD have a coke problem?

At one point around 15 years ago, UTD had over 85% density. Over time, because of the Pat Tornillo (former UTD President) scandal and the issues raised in this article, it has plummeted to barely over 40%.

As the majority of Miami-Dade teachers voted with their feet and pocketbooks, as have teachers all over Florida, to flee these so-called unions to the point that they represent less than 50% of their bargaining unit, why should they dictate the working conditions and the contractual rights of the majority of the bargaining unit?

House Bill 11 will force UTD, and unions like them, to either shape up or literally ship out.  If a union is decertified under this bill, they brought it upon themselves; the affected bargaining unit members will have a golden opportunity to organize a labor union that best represents and suits their interests and the people that they serve – patients, students, and other clientele.

Groza-Learning-Center-8-ACT-SAT-Hacks

8 Neglected Hacks to Increase SAT and ACT Test Scores

The SAT and ACT are critical standardized tests that tend to induce a great deal of anxiety among test-takers. This anxiety — which is present during the weeks and months before the exam as well as the actual day of the exam — can adversely influence a student’s performance in such a way that the score does not even remotely reflect the student’s aptitude.

Understanding how to manage test-day anxiety is just one component to ensuring test-day success, and there is a great deal that can be done to guarantee an outstanding performance during the lead-up to the exam as well as during the exam itself. If you will soon be taking the SAT or the ACT, the following nine exam “hacks” are absolutely essential and are also quite simple to incorporate into your test preparation strategy.

It should be noted that these hacks make-up only a portion of the preparation required for an SAT or ACT official test. The three key components of prep are Content Review, Strategies, and Practice, and those must be make up the heart of a prep program. Also, there is simply no substitute for a thorough and rigorous approach to studying and preparation that begins well in advance of the SAT or ACT exam. Each of these hacks simply ensures you will perform according to the absolute best of your abilities, but you should not expect any hack to yield the kind of performance benefits associated with a comprehensive, long-term, and consistent approach to standardized test preparation. These hacks have worked well for students in the past- try them out and see what works for you.

1. Sleep

Get good sleep, like a cat!

Get good sleep, like a cat! This is also your cat tax.

Study after study has demonstrated that an adequate amount of sleep helps your brain focus and ensures you are able to perform at peak cognitive efficiency. Sound sleep habits improve cognitive function and have a positive impact on recall and retention, all of which is critical when it comes to your performance on the SAT or ACT.

In order to reap the rewards associated with sound sleep habits, you have to be committed to a consistent sleep schedule; going to bed early on the night before the exam will not negate your otherwise poor sleep habits on every other night of the week.

Long before you are scheduled to take the SAT or ACT, do your best to find a sleep schedule that works for you and adhere to that schedule on a consistent basis. Not only will you improve your academic and standardized test performance, you will likely find that the benefits associated with proper sleep habits extend into just about everything else you do.

2. Breakfast

Eat protein for breakfast. Who needs an excuse to eat bacon?

Eat protein for breakfast. Who needs an excuse to eat bacon?

On the morning of the test, it is incredibly helpful to abide by your typical morning routine. We tend to find comfort and calm in that which is familiar, so following your usual before-school schedule and performing all of your daily rituals will reduce some of the natural test-day anxiety. This assumes, of course, that your typical morning routine involves eating a solid breakfast.

Since most SAT and ACT exams start around 9 a.m. and last several hours, you’ll surely want to take steps to promote a feeling of mental and physical endurance. Studies have shown that eating a sensible breakfast contributes to improved concentration and enhanced cognition, which will obviously contribute to an improved performance on the SAT or ACT.

So, what exactly is a “sensible breakfast”? Ideally, it is a meal that contains plenty of protein since brain function is so closely tied to amino acids. Experiment with different protein sources during the weeks and months before you are scheduled to take the test to determine the best way to prepare your pre-test meal, paying attention to how you feel throughout the day and especially during the time from 9am to noon.

3. Body Language

Find your "power pose", don't destroy anything, please.

Find your “power pose”, don’t destroy anything, please.

Your body language influences so much more than just how others perceive you, as adopting certain positions can contribute to improved feelings of confidence even when done in a conscious effort to improve self-confidence. A study performed by researchers from Harvard University and the University of California at Berkeley demonstrated that participants who engaged in “power posing” before a critical social evaluation performed markedly better during their subsequent evaluation.

The researchers defined “power poses” as “expansive, open poses,” and they demonstrated a causal link between the act of posing and subsequent increases in “explicit and implicit feelings of power and dominance, risk-taking behavior, action orientation, pain tolerance, and testosterone (the dominance hormone), while reducing stress, anxiety, and cortisol.”

On the day of the test, be mindful of the fact that you can consciously reduce any feelings of anxiety and create a substantial sense of self-confidence in your test-taking abilities by simply walking tall, sitting up straight, and maintaining the expansive, open poses discussed by the researchers from Harvard and Cal-Berkeley.

4. Inner Monologue

Miss you Harambe!

Miss you Harambe!

Priming is a potent psychological tool that can have a profound effect on the manner in which we perform just about any task, including both mental and physical tasks. You can use this tool to your advantage through the act of self-priming your brain to perform its absolute best during the course of a critical standardized test. Although you probably should avoid talking to yourself out loud during the test, you should should absolutely use your inner monologue to repeatedly prime your brain to succeed just before you take on a new section of the exam.

Before you start the test and again at the start of each new section, give yourself a brief inspirational speech through the use of your inner monologue. It is in this way that you can use competence priming to remind yourself about how well you have prepared to take the exam and how much time and energy you have devoted to ensuring your success. After reminding yourself about your extensive preparatory efforts, tell yourself how well you expect to perform precisely because you have dedicated so much effort to preparing for the exam.

5. Breathe Deeply

Deep, slow breaths. Don't imagine you're slowly sinking like a turtle.

Deep, slow breaths. Don’t imagine you’re slowly sinking like a turtle.

Your breathing patterns deeply influence your ability to handle stressful situations, and a high-stakes standardized test certainly qualifies as a uniquely stressful situation. Once you enter the room in which you will be taking the exam, try to be mindful of your breathing patterns and avoid taking the quick, shallow breaths that naturally occur when you enter a stressful environment.

Instead, focus on deep-breathing techniques in which each inspiration lasts three to five seconds and each expiration lasts between eight and 12 seconds. This will engage the parasympathetic nervous system, or PNS, which promotes a relaxed, stress-free state of being and results in improved organ function. These breathing practices will ensure that your brain is “firing on all cylinders,” thereby allowing you to perform to the best of your ability throughout the entirety of the exam.

6. Feed Your Brain.

Try new foods leading up to the test date and see how you feel. Also, what is this thing?

Try new foods leading up to the test date and see how you feel. Also, what is this thing?

We have already discussed the importance of eating a sensible breakfast on the day of the exam, but you should also make sure you are able to “top off the fuel tank” during the scheduled breaks that occur throughout these lengthy exams. This practice is analogous to the marathon runner who consumes glucose-laden gels throughout a race to provide ample energy resources throughout the entirety of such a physically and mentally taxing endurance event.

This is why it is helpful to think of the SAT or ACT as an endurance event on the scale of a marathon. After preparing for months and months, the last thing you want is to perform less than your best simply because of an energy crash during the later stages of the test. Since your brain runs on glucose and glucose is made available to the body on an almost immediate basis, eating a small snack high in glucose can help improve your performance on the exam.

Our bodies tend to react differently to different foods, so try to experiment with different sources of glucose long before test day to see how you respond. Some test-takers will find that an apple is the perfect snack, while others might feel that the fiber of the fruit makes them feel sluggish. Once you have identified the right source of glucose, make sure to bring it with you to your designated test location.

7. Gum

tl;dr chew gum, don't be annoying with it.

Chew gum, don’t be annoying with it.

Surprisingly enough, several studies indicate that the act of chewing gum is a relatively mild stimulant that benefits test-takers due to improvements in reaction time, accuracy, alertness, and mood. The type of gum is mostly irrelevant, but you should be mindful of others in the room and avoid behaviors that might cause them distraction — especially blowing bubbles. Avoid gum that is spicy as it might lead you to drink more water. More water would lead to more bathroom breaks. Ultimately this could lead to less time sitting and actually working out answers.

8. Journaling

Free your mind! What made typewriters en vogue?

Free your mind! What made typewriters en vogue?

Students often find it difficult to clear their mind on the day of the test, and some may struggle to such a degree that it becomes a distraction. In order to avoid this potentially adverse issue, write a brief journal entry in which you spontaneously write whatever irrelevant thought comes into your mind.

Through the act of writing, you will clear your mind and feel a sense of closure that will ensure any extraneous thoughts do not distract you from the task at hand. This is a critical step before an exam like the SAT or ACT, and a clear, distraction-free mindset has been shown to play a significant role in stimulating positive performance outcomes.

Once you have finished the entry, simply toss it into the appropriate bin or pack it away someplace safe where it can remain for the duration of the exam. After all, you are not likely to be allowed to bring anything that could be considered review material into the exam room, so make sure you plan accordingly if you intend on using this effective pre-test strategy.

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A Globalist’s Gambit

“He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future.” – Adolf Hitler

Gross Schechter Day School is a Jewish day school whose mission is to encourage “creativity, exploration and self-discovery” by stressing “critical thinking, personal responsibility and global awareness.”  Their children are to be “active students of the global world,” making them the ideal subjects for a multicultural outreach program, such as the “No Place for Hate Workshop,” sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

The Workshop hype claims to prepare students to support and assist in resolving peer conflicts and to uncritically accept all manner of belief systems, cultures, ethics, values, behaviors, and religions.  They are being taught to abandon their own standards of morality while accepting the evils perpetrated by others, such as the oppressive woman-hating regime of Islam, where they chop off hands and feet for petty crimes and decapitate for other offenses.

Determined to set in stone this rejection of our own ethos, the ADL requires the children to personally sign a Resolution of Respect that would condemn them to a life of naïve passivity, like sheep led into a world of increasing violence and uncertainty.  Northampton Area School District’s Superintendent Joseph Kovalchik explained their acceptance this way: “The blend of ethnic backgrounds in the district has changed along with that of the country, triggering the need for the program.”  He failed to grasp that the program obliges the original residents to heedlessly accept the behaviors of the invading culture, rather than helping the newcomers to assimilate into its new culture – to become Americans.

Established in 1913 to “stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all,” the ADL has strayed from this vocation to promoting globalism, leftism, and an all-encompassing socialist government.  It began connecting with schools in 2015, only now approaching a tranquil Jewish day school in idyllic Middle-American suburbia, adjacent to a city declared by its foolish councilmen to be a “welcoming” community (with immunity from the law) to illegal immigrants.

The ADL is led by CEO and National Director Jonathan Greenblatt, a man with considerable experience.  Greenblatt served as director of the Impact Economy Initiative project at the Aspen Institute, funded by George Soros and five other billionaires through Soros’s Open Society Institute.  Their programs are designed to “assess” (and transform) American injustice (viewing America as immoral), social and economic problems (a step toward social engineering), structural racism (featuring racial inequity), and the Institute’s “Roundtable on Community Change.”  This cabal worked to engineer the defeat of President George W. Bush (2004) and John Kerry.

Greenblatt and Soros are now manipulating a “resistance” against President Trump during his First 100 Days.  Their Democracy Alliance, which also includes Nancy Pelosi, Elizabeth Warren, and Keith Ellison, has strategized full warfare against President Trump.  Greenblatt headed the office of Obama’s White House Social Innovation and Civic Participation, designed to place the responsibility of increasing anti-Semitism on the Trump administration. He apparently charged Steve Bannon with anti-Semitism because the latter knows of Greenblatt’s nefarious affiliations.  The accusation was walked back.

America’s teachers have already been indoctrinated by the Common Core standards and textbooks, and Soros’s many organizations can pave the road to acceptance of the No Place for Hate Workshop.  The Gross Schechter Day School, passive and uninformed altruists, is the perfect patsy for such as the ADL, an organization that continues to bathe in the light of its historic accomplishments.

One of their programs is titled “Anti-Bias Education: The Power of Social-Emotional Learning” – a leftist technique that indoctrinates for a social-justice agenda that is already ensconced in Common Core curricula.  The Type #1 philosophy of education that existed prior to Common Core requires knowledge-based, academic, grade-level-specific, clearly worded lessons that increase in depth and complexity from one grade level to the next, and measurable with largely right or wrong answers.  Its antithesis, the Type #2 used in schools today, minimizes academic knowledge; emphasizes process over the right answer; and stresses feelings, opinions, and beliefs over facts.  By accentuating subjectivity and relativism, all traditional and objective parameters are removed from the child’s inner landscape and they are readied for socialist indoctrination.

Included in this technique is self-awareness – to recognize one’s emotions, thoughts, impulses – used to instill in them a sense of uniformity.  Hence, the undeveloped mind is taught to view with suspicion everything that smacks of individuality, creativity, the recognition of differences, and of being able to discern right from wrong, good from evil.  Controlling their feelings, curbing their language, and retraining their uniqueness is classic brainwashing.  They are taught to read state-designed material, replacing the classics upon which are based our skills of reading, analysis and intellectual communication.

Another of the programs encourages youth-led movements to bring about significant social change, as their minds are steeped in specific, but Orwellian, terms – diversity, multiculturalism, peace, anti-racism, human rights – all seen through a jaundiced perspective and activism.  The mind control makes possible the creation of an obedient militia, and the students are ready to take their crusade from the classroom to the street.

This newly trained league forms the inspired soldiers, in thrall to the exciting idealism and political action.  It is evident in the Occupy movement, Black Lives Matter, Never-Trumpers, Women’s March on Washington, and in the wanton flag-burning, window-breaking anarchy. While those randomly interviewed could not reason their activity to the reporter, they are programmed to educate others, advocate for legislation, run for office, demonstrate, and create public awareness campaigns through social media and the press.

At a time when hate crimes are increasing against Jews, Christians and other groups are suffering worldwide at the hands of Islamic ideology, and campus hate groups are proliferating, the ADL is otherwise occupied.

Where was the ADL when Oberlin College’s assistant professor Joy Karega was cited for posting on her Facebook that the Jews were responsible for 9/11 and the Paris massacre?  Where were they when pre-school teacher Nancy Salem, one of 23 anti-Israel activists at The Children’s Courtyard, advocated racist violence against Jews?  Where are they every time another BDS or SJP (Students for Justice in Palestine) group gathers in a college or university to stage another Israel Apartheid Week or shout down a visiting conservative speaker?

Perhaps these are moving along well enough and don’t require his intervention, but Greenblatt’s dander is up when President Trump proceeds with acts to keep America safe from the riots, rapes, and regrets that are plaguing Europe.  He raises his voice to condemn this President and his Executive Order, intending, no doubt, to thwart any interference with the distribution of peoples necessary to prepare for globalism.

The ADL’s artfulness in reaching out to private schools should compel us to contact the schools’ administrations, which must be made aware of this danger.  For their own protection, teachers and pupils need to learn to discern friend from foe, good from evil, and understand that we are all not alike, and should not be categorized and treated as such.  Only then can they hope to protect themselves from the onslaught of the combined civilizational warfare – the 1400-year Muslim conquests and the globalist left that work in tandem to dismantle and reshape our society, beginning with the minds of the young.

In a country that observes its Judeo-Christian values by taking in migrants from Islamic countries, tolerating the fact that their every prayer rings with hatred of Jews and Christians, we have seen no evidence that the ADL has instituted constructive programs where they are needed most – in Islamic schools and community groups.

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