LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Make yourselves heard

I taught grades 7-12 until I tired of the administration behaviors of job preservationism at the expense of effective teaching/learning. I retired in September 2012, about the time Common Core was being instituted in deep blue cities and states. Common Core was a set of lessons for each grade level and each core subject.

The way it worked, the teacher would download the day’s lesson, print the number required for the day, present that lesson for a few minutes, then the students would complete that lesson & turn it in. The teacher graded, then entered the grade. There were no text books. No lesson was permitted to go home with the student.

Why no text books? Well, Texas school book approval board was populated with a majority of people who were NOT of the liberal/left mindset for the first time a few years back. (https://www.huffpost.com/entry/texas-textbook-massacre-u_n_498003) They suddenly stopped ordering books with leftist/socialist-leaning information and deletions. Texas was the largest purchaser of K-12 school books in the nation, therefore what Texas ordered controlled text book publication nation wide. Suddenly the Bill Ayers/Bernadine Dorne income stream was severed.

You see, Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dorne were input and editors of school books for decades. Yep. Barack Obama’s Chicago neighbors. The same folks in whose living room his political career was planned and started. The same Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dorne who ducked prosecution for terrorism in the 1970’s because—uh huh…the FBI used illegal wire taps to gather information on them and their Weather Underground. Weather Underground, Global Warming, Overwhelm the System, Change, Climate Change…who knows…

So. Now we have the 1619 Project morphed into Critical Race Theory doxology. Delivery system…Common Core method. No text book, no homework, keep parents comfortable with good grades by the kiddos, keep them out of the class room for “security reasons”, make everything “opt out” rather than “opt in”. In other words, take control of their children. Then, along came the national shut-down/shut-in due to the COVID19 bugaboo.

All of a very sudden parents became housed with their children, thus learning what the schools have been doing with them. Their children were functionally illiterate about their country, were no longer being taught to write in cursive, were poor math-minded, couldn’t write a simple note, much less spell or punctuate or capitalize. To top it all off, while they were deprived of working and earning—the entire government school system was being paid!

Private schools have begun to expand due to the surging demand. It will not be much longer before taxpayers will demand their education cost per student follow the student to the school of the parents’ choice. That will not kill off the “public school”, but will drastically force it to reorganize and improve.

Political indoctrinators will quickly be depopulated from schools. College teacher training will quickly revert to producing good effective teachers rather than “educators”. You see, private schools hire good teachers away from public schools for less, or comparable, incomes because they allow them to “teach”.

As an example, the school district in Odessa (Ector County Independent School District ECISD) loses 350-400 teachers/year. Having been part of it the first 2 years I taught, I can explain why. The schools have been warehouses for school-age children. I taught wood shop and wood manufacturing to 180 8th & 9th graders. 6 periods with 30 per class in the most dangerous facility in the school of 1100+ students. Fully 35% of our students were classified as special ed with IEPs, or were identified as subject deficient in 1 or more areas—just to keep them from taking the STAR exams. Of my 90 9th graders, many would “age out” by turning 17 during the year. Many were in, or just out of, the juvenile criminal justice system. We operated on 9-week grading periods in which “no student will receive a grade less than 50 during the 1st and 3rd grading periods”. Failing grades were discouraged, rather than encouraging passing performance.

I recommend each of you evaluate how your children, grandchildren, neices, nephews, friends’ children, are taught and held to high academic standards. Involve yourselves in school board meetings. Demand changes where needed. Do not “settle”.

Doug Moss