What is the biggest threat to children’s education today?
Is it COVID-19, or ignorance? I’m going for number two. There is more and more evidence to support me.
In August, Oregon Governor Kate Brown privately signed a bill ending the requirement for high school students to prove they have mastered writing, reading and math before they go. graduate. The law lasts three years. The pandemic has been blamed for the delay in students, but the real motive was revealed by governor spokesman Charles Boyle, who said existing standards failed students who did not test well and that new standards would help âBlacks, Latinos, Latinx, Native, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal and Students of Color. I’m surprised he didn’t include, as President Biden often does, the LGBTQI-plus demographic.
In New York City, outgoing Mayor Bill de Blasio ordered the elimination of the city’s gifted and talented program. You can probably guess the reason.
Critics of the program claim it is racist because white and Asian students are overwhelmingly represented. De Blasio will let currently enrolled children complete the program, but no new students will be accepted.
Instead, reports The New York Times, âThe system will be replaced by a program that offers the possibility of accelerated learning to students in the latter years of elementary school.
Who will be qualified for this? And who has the right to say? What if it was the same racial and ethnic imbalance as it is today?
De Blasio ridiculously said, “I bet a lot of parents are going to look at this plan and say it’s a reason to stay in public schools.” Rather the opposite. Enrollment in the city’s public schools has fallen below 890,000 students, compared to more than one million children a decade ago, according to internal Department of Education (DOE) files consulted. by the New York Post.
COVID-19 is only part of the reason. Home schooling and people leaving New York are probably the biggest contributors to the exodus. Over the past five years – starting before COVID – New York City public schools have lost at least 10% of their students, DOE figures show.
The decline in American education is not a new trend, but it has been accelerated in recent years by some politicians who let their ideology and politics replace results.
I have written about the Children’s Scholarship Fund (CSF) in the past because it has a track record of success, which should be the main focus, not appealing to politicians and teacher unions. According to the CSF website, âIn New York City, 99.4% of CSF alumni who responded to our alumni survey graduated from high school on time in 2018, compared to the rate of average recent New York public school graduation 77.3%. Of the CSF alumni who graduated, 87% said they plan to go to college. The same gap between CSF students and public schools exists in other cities where they are active.
What is – or should be – particularly pleasing are the testimonies given by the mostly minority students who were rescued from their failing public schools and had the chance of a real education, not to mention a moral framework on how to live a good life. . Read some of these stories on the site.
Since its creation, the CSF has provided $ 885 million in scholarships to 185,000 children. During the last school year, the CSF and its local partners distributed $ 46.9 million in scholarships. More children could be saved if more politicians embraced school choice, which is a growing trend, as well as home schooling.
Removing a gifted and talented curriculum and not requiring children to read, write, or do basic math fails the test of what education is supposed to mean and limits a child’s employment and career opportunities.
It is a form of child abuse.
Readers can email Cal thomas at [email protected] Look for Cal Thomas’ latest book “America’s Expiration Date: The Fall of Empires and Superpowers and the Future of the United States” (HarperCollins / Zondervan).