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TEXAS: Magnolia ISD Making News Once Again!

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channel 13
by Steve Campion

EXCLUSIVE: Student no-billed on threat after months in jail

 

 

 

A former Magnolia West High senior student said he never planned to hurt anyone at his school.

Thomas Cade Martin spoke exclusively to abc13 after a grand jury no-billed him on a terroristic threat charge.

In February, cell phone video surfaced on social media that led to Martin’s expulsion and arrest. In it, Martin can be heard talking about planting bombs and shooting students.

“It was a big, huge misunderstanding. The video that was originally displayed was taken way out of context,” said Martin. “It all started when I was just trying to explain myself and give a scenario to the students to just show that it is possible that something like that could happen in the small town of Magnolia.”

“It was never a threat?” abc13’s Steve Campion asked.

“No sir. It was never a threat. Not at all,” Martin responded.

He explained the footage only shows part of a broader conversation about potential school violence. He said he only offered up a scenario.

You can hear students laughing during parts of the video.

Martin spent more than two months in the Montgomery County jail. His family couldn’t afford his bail.

“My reaction was honestly, my heart fell through the floor because everything about that goes against what I believe in,” said Martin. “I believe in protecting American interests and the American way of life. I believe in prosperity. I’m a huge patriotic.”

The 19-year-old said he wishes the Magnolia Independent School District would have handled the situation differently. Martin wants to be an NAVY Seal. He said he plans to move to Wisconsin and finish high school.

“They should have most certainly looked in it more thoroughly before they just decided to up and expel me and change my life,” said Martin. “I would love to have an apology. I feel like I deserve an apology. It’s not because it is a pride thing. It’s because it would be the right thing to do.”

Magnolia ISD released the following statement to abc13.

“Magnolia ISD is prohibited by federal law to discuss student discipline. The action taken by the District was consistent and fair with Magnolia ISD’s board policy, student code of conduct and the Texas Education Code.”

See Video

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Magnolia ISD: Dr. Stephens Where is the TRUTH?

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lies

Texas school district, Magnolia ISD, has made national news within the last couple of weeks due to the violation of “parental rights“. Their “NEW” policy prohibited parents from walking their children home from school in the name of “safety'” (I assume they did not think parents would be concerned with their own child’s safety and needed help from the “STATE”).

Magnolia’s new Bear Branch Elementary Principal, Holly Ray, informed parents that there would be no walkers at the beginning of this school year. Since making the news after parents had been issued “trespass warnings” and threatened with arrest the Magnolia ISD administration is now denying there was ever a “no walker policy”. The district claims parents have always been free to walk their children home although we have found no notice stating this fact up until the district released this statement on April 6th. As expected, the district diverts blame for their actions onto the parents. Labeling them as being “verbally and physically” abusive and disrupting school procedures. This diversion technique is a common tactic utilized among Texas School Districts when portrayed in a negative light in the news.

The new walker policy was pulled out of thin air once this news story broke. Parents may now walk their children home twenty five minutes after school dismisses if the car rider line has made its way through the parking lot and possibly a longer if not.  (More of “I” am in control).  So where does the TRUTH lie?

holly ray

Principal, Holly Ray

 

Parent, Robert Zeck provided this statement and a copy of the schools “CAR RIDER RULES” that specifically states “Students will NOT be dismissed to people on foot”.  Notice the bold word “NOT” in this one rule. Seems Ms. Ray wanted to make her point quite clear there would not be walkers. So why all the confusion?

robert zeck 2

car rider rules

MISD released the following comment to Fox 26 April, 15th stating “We are happy for parents to walk their children home”. I would say we have some major contradictions here. Where in the world are the board members in all of this?

misd lies

 

Holly Ray became the new principal of Bear Branch Elementary  this year. Parents upset with the new policy have followed the district’s administrative channels in hopes of reaching an amicable agreement.  Unfortunately, Ray and MISD Superintendent, Todd Stephens dug their administrative heels in and would not budge. One father met with Ray during the fall to discuss revising the new policy. With no agreeable consensus he left Ray’s office voicing his opposition to the “no walker policy” and said he would be at the next school board meeting. The meeting with Ray was held at 9:00 am on Sept 4th. At 4:00 pm the same day a Constable placed a “TRESPASS WARNING” in the father’s mailbox with no explanation as to why it was issued. Upon visiting the constable’s office asking for any and all documents pertaining to the warning, he was told there was nothing. Yes, that is right NO POLICE REPORT.

I would have to surmise that Ms. Ray, as Bear Branch’s new principal, did not want the father to address the first school board meeting of the year voicing complaints directed at her school policies.

Magnolia ISD has since come out claiming the warrant that was issued in the fall was due to the father attempting to be “verbally and physically” abusive to a staff member at Bear Branch Elementary though there is no police report backing up such claims. Fox 26 asked the district the following regarding the superintendents statement.

Fox 26It is their understanding? WHAT? Do they not have any facts? Now not only has this father, a school volunteer, been portrayed as possibly “verbally and physically abusive”, the district is now claiming his behavior has been an on going problem although there is no report of it. Hmmm, interesting?

 

The district also claimed there was no police report. Well after filing a Public Information Request the Montgomery County Attorney’s office released the police report that doesn’t exist. See below. I would like to mention that the superintendent, Todd Stephens claims in his press releases that a father has continually been a “verbal and physical” danger. Though the police report has zilch information pertaining to this or why a trespass warning was issued.  Interesting. Again Magnolia ISD where is the truth?

POLICE REPORT

todd stephens

Superintendent, Todd Stephens was emailed by the parents asking once again to be allowed to walk their children home as well as having the “Trespass Warning” removed. His response below specifically states there will be no “bike rider or walkers” at Bear Branch. In regards to removing the “Criminal Trespass Warning”, the superintendent left that up to the Ms. Ray, the principal. WHAT? Let’s look at this objectively. We have a man that the district claims is, and has been, a “physical threat” to staff at Bear Branch Elementary prompting them to call Constable, David Hill’s office to invoke a criminal trespass warning. Now the school principal, Holly Ray is qualified to determine when this father is no longer a threat in order to remove the warning? You can’t make this stuff up.

We also have two moms that walked to the school and picked up their children at the close of the school day in March and returned home. Within the hour Ms. Ray calls for a constable from Constable David Hill’s office to serve them papers at their home, in front of their neighbors and children. The constable informs the moms that if they walk their children home again they could either be charged with a class B misdemeanor or arrested. SERIOUSLY?

 

MOMS ADDRESS SCHOOL BOARD

Asked by Fox News Reporter, Andrea Watkins if the district will apologize for the excessive force and intimidation tactics. The district now claims these moms  have been a continued disruption to the dismissal procedures. More blame shifting and intimidation on behalf of Magnolia ISD district.

 

Districts statement to Fox 26 questions.

 

The following paper was distributed to parents at the beginning of the year.  The policy states “If you need to come inside the building after school, please remain in the car rider line until you have picked up your child and then park in a designated spot and check in at the front office.” I can see no other reason for that policy except to show the parents of Bear Branch Elementary that she is the boss and will control the parents and children and how they behave at “her” campus. Why else would you want someone to wait in the rider line, pick up their child, park, and then enter the building rather than park and enter the building where their child already was, do your business and return to you car and leave?

 

car rider policy

 

Texas State Rep Cecil Bell is now caught in the fray after posting Magnolia ISD’s response to Fox News on his Facebook Page. From all appearances it appears that Rep. Bell supports the Magnolia ISD School District over the parents in this situation and has yet to speak to them (his constitutents) regarding the matter.

 

Cecil bell truth

 

 

I will end by asking Magnolia ISD where is the truth?

 

 

 

 

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Magnolia ISD Recruits Another District Insider for School Board!

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Kelly McDonaldThe days of having a school board that represents voters is OVER. Believe me when I tell you that behind the scenes the powers at be work in recruiting and maintaining board members that will not rock the status quo. School Boards do not want to be transparent. They are “NOT” forthcoming with parents, taxpayers or the community of their agenda’s or the progressive curriculum they are implementing. School Districts on a whole at the top are just another corrupt government bureaucracy run amok , sadly.

Magnolia’s ISD’s 2016 School Board election is this May and it appears they have roped another establishment candidate to replace Steve Crews for Place #1, local realtor, Kelly McDonald.Kelly will be the 3rd realtor to sit on the board which I find interesting. Have school boards now become a smaller version of the liberal “chamber of commerce”? Is serving on the school board truly about education any longer or business?

Kelly is a huge proponent in implementing the United Nations Marxist Curriculum, International Baccalaureate in Magnolia schools giving no thought to how or will effect our children and country. Kelly took to the podium the past fall at one of Magnolia ISD’s school board meeting to promote the program.

Kelly also served on the Magnolia ISD’s bond planning committee and starred in the following video to get voters out to vote in favor of the bond.

https://www.facebook.com/MISDSchoolBond/videos/1024074907615926/

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Magnolia ISD: Moms Address School Board on Walking Kids Home

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Unfortunately, across the United States we are witnessing the overreach of governmental authorities at various unconstitutional levels. One that hits a little closer to home is the utilization of government power to violate and intimidate parents and their “parental rights” when raising their own children as they see fit. This violation is happening by a greater scale on a daily basis with parents seeking legal council to fight this infringement.

Presently in the Texas school district of Magnolia ISD we are witnessing this government encroachment and intimidation with moms being threatened with arrest and class B misdemeanors. Their crime you may ask? Walking their children home from school. One would think this is a fabricated story but unfortunately it is not. Magnolia’s Bear Branch Elementary  new principal, Holly Ray implemented this new walker policy this school year prohibiting parents to walk their children home even if they live within walking distance.

Mom’s Heather Burke and Lindsey Simmons live within .2 miles of the school and after numerous  attempts to work with the school and their administration on their absurd “no walker” policy brought their complaints to the Magnolia ISD April school board meeting.

You can view the video of their complaints below.

Heather Burke

 

 

Lindsey Simmons

 

 

overruled

ParentalRights.org  has released the following video, OVERRULED highlighting the government invasion of parental rights

 

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Magnolia ISD to Implement Buddhist Meditation?

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budda

Magnolia ISD has been working quietly the last few years to implement the United Nations, International Baccalaureate Program (IB), paid for with our tax dollars. The IB program is promoted as a “prestigious & valued” program taken by students seeking college admittance and scholarships. Hidden is the history of it’s creation and mission of changing  American Society. IB is no friend to the Christian faith or America’s western values.

poison tree

 

Magnolia ISD is no longer an American School teaching American Exceptionalism, but a Global School with a Global Mission. You can read more about the history and mission of the IB program at the following post,  Magnolia ISD Implementing “Marxist” Curriculum.

 

child meditation

IB has a World Magazine which is published twice a year.  The current issue promotes the practice  of Buddhist Meditation called “mindfulness” by students and teachers.  You can view this article in full on pages 11-19 of the March issue.

I have pasted a few excerpts from the article below. Please take the time to read the above mentioned blog post and the IB article.

 

ib world

 

buddhist

good thoughts

language

mind

lay flat

 

power of breath

 

well being

If you are a Christian and value America and it’s freedom please make your voice heard and call the

Magnolia ISD Administration office and tell then we do not want this in our schools. Phone: (281) 356-3571.

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Magnolia ISD: 12 Student Withdrawals or 67+ Withdrawals? You be the Judge.

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Magnolia ISD has hit the news media by storm this week over a new policy restricting parents from deciding on how best to pick up their children from school. Parents who have walked to the school to pick up their kids have been served papers by the Montgomery County Precinct 5 , David Hill’s Constable’s office for doing so and informed if they did it again they would be arrested. Yes, I would say this was by far an overreach of governmental power and intimidation.

Parents have set up meetings and personally met with Magnolia ISD’s Superintendent, Todd Stephens, Bear Branch Elementary Principal, Holly Ray and spoke at a school board meeting regarding the new restrictive policy with no satisfactory resolution.

 

todd stephens

It was not until news of this story hit the media that Superintendent, Todd Stephens publicly addressed with the following statement to parents. \Superintendent’s Letter to Bear Branch Parents

 

I find some of Mr. Stephens statements questionable. One being the count of how many students that have withdrawn from Bear Branch Elementary this 2015-2016 school year.

todd stephens students

One parent filed a Public Information Request with the district in October requesting a head count of students that have withdrawn from MISD elementary schools.

 

amy young. PIR

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Moms Arrested if they Walk Kids Home from School

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hand cuffs

The Education Gestapo is at it again. The days of walking to the school or riding your bike are now over at least in Magnolia ISD. Principal, Holly Ray of Bear Branch Elementary had the bike rack removed prior to the beginning of the school year to stop children from riding their bike to and from school. Parents are not allowed to walk from their homes to pick up their children either. I find this ridiculous and hypocritical to the core. Our education system is busy brainwashing our children with the Global Warming agenda in limiting carbon emissions but then they turn around and demand you drive your car and sit in a long car line and emit carbon into the atmosphere (Disclaimer: I think Global Warming/Climate Change is a HOAX).

 

holly ray

Holly Ray

hray@magnoliaisd.org

ph#281-356-4771

Parents in the Lake Windcrest subdivision which backs up to the school property have been issued warnings and restraining orders for walking and retrieving their children at the end of a school day. I would like to note these parents volunteer at the school on a regular basis. What are their options? They have to get in their gas guzzling cars and sit in the long car line or their children have to ride the bus even if their home backs right up to the school. As you can see in the diagram below the houses in Lake Windcrest are in great walking distance which I am sure was a positive when purchasing their home.

 

 

bear branch houses

 

 

 

 

I am not an attorney but this law might need to be looked at by the Magnolia ISD administration.

Federal Law Now Says Kids Can Walk to School Alone

Parent, Frank Young was issued a Trespass Warning to not step foot on any MISD campus in the Fall of 2015 without prior warning when he disagreed with Principal, Holly’s Ray’s policy. Frank later confronted the school board and has since removed his children from the district.

frank

 

I would like to mention that the 3 following Magnolia ISD Board Members live in the Lake Windcrest Subdivision. Do you think they have stood up and helped the parents (the voters who put them in office)? Not in the least. Like I have always said school board members do not represent those that elect them. They become rubber stampers for the ISD administration.

travis moffattkristi MHGary Blizzard

UPDATE: Parents upset over policy banning walking kids to school http://www.fox26houston.com/news/117783912-story

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Texas Education joins with “Nation of Islam”

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texas & islam

 

This past October Texas Association of Curriculum Development (TEXAS ASCD) joined forces with the Nation of Islam in hosting a conference on transforming Texas Education.

texas ascd

Their guest speaker was Dr. Anthony S. Muhammad, CEO of New Frontier 21 Consulting.

Dr. Muhammad is on friendly terms with Nation of Islam Leader, Louis Farrakhan as you will see from their business affiliations and social media behavior.

Anthony Muhammad

The photo below is from the Nation of Islam’s online newspaper, Final Call dated August 17, 2011 where Dr. Muhammad joined with Farrakhan for a speaking engagement at the Nation of Islam’s First Ministry of Education Conference.

The final Call. Nation

 

In 2009, Dr. Muhammad  joined with the Nation of Islam and the Muhammad Universities for speaking engagements in transforming education. You can read about it HERE.

 

love you bro

 

muhammad mom

 

Minister Farrakan

 

Another consultant for Dr. Anthony Muhammad’s New Frontier 21 Consulting firm is

Shahid Muhammad.

Shahid Muhammad

 

Shahid Muhammad, often referred to as the Math Dr. joined Louis Farrahkan at the University of Islam (MUI) for speaking engagements as well. Shahid is quoted the following when asked what is Mathematics.

what is mathematics

You can find the full interview at …..The FINAL CALL

shahid

shaid 2

 

shahid twitter

shahid twitter 2

Dr Math Bear Witness of Farrakhan.

 

 

Those responsible for teaming up with the Nation of Islam agenda are the board members for Texas Association of Curriculum and Supervision.

 

bod

 

bod2

If one thinks our Texas education agency and its many affiliates are not radically working to transform our education system you have your head in the sand.

Why our Texas legislators let this transformation transpire is beyond me but I can tell you most are totally unaware of the transformation taking place. While others are complicit in it.

Where is your legislator?

 

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Amid Deficit, HISD Continues Spending

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 Mar 7, 2016 byCharles Blain

Despite vocal outrage, HISD trustees voted last month to rename seven district campuses currently named after confederate leaders.

In a district that isn’t burdened by corruption and debt this push should draw ire because it represents an attempt to sugarcoat history. But considering the dismal state of affairs HISD has imposed upon itself, it should be anything but a competing priority.

Attempting to determine the cost of the name changes was all the more maddening.

Both HISD’s Public Information Office and Press Office, when responding to an inquiry about the costs associated with the change, said it “wasn’t determined” yet. The notion that district trustees voted on such a massive undertaking before considering (or even investigating) such an expense is unfathomable.

Following that response, we reached out to Board President Manuel Rodriguez who was the only official who had an estimate. Rodriguez said that each name change was estimated to cost around $250,000 — or about $1.75 million for the whole project.

In addition to unnecessary spending, a general lack of oversight, cost overruns, and a history of hiring questionable vendors, a lack of inter-district communication can now be added to the growing list of concerns plaguing the credibility of HISD’s school board.

District officials are focusing more on being “social justice” warriors than fiscal stewards acting in the best interest of the taxpayers and the students they serve. Rushing through emotionally charged, feel-good measures while failing to address employee concerns — all while ignoring a $200 million bond shortfall and a $105 million deficit— is at best, grossly irresponsible.

The inefficiency of HISD would be laughable if it were anything but a public entity.

Sadly, HISD’s problems are largely self-inflicted, and while some board members were voted out during the last election cycle, it doesn’t appear the new ones are adequately refocusing the board on their fiduciary responsibility to represent taxpayers.

– See more at: http://www.empowertexans.com/around-texas/amid-deficit-hisd-continues-spending/#sthash.tCnK4Z76.dpuf

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In Texas, C is for Conservative….. or Communist?

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1980

 

 

Mykidzliberty.wordpress.com

Open Letter to the Texas State Board of Education and Texas Legislature 02.24.16

 

It is with profound sadness, frustration and concern for what is next that I write to you, following the viewing of the hearing by the Commission on Next Generation Assessments and Accountability that was held in Austin yesterday.

I am appalled by Governor Greg Abbott’s choice of appointment of Texas Education Commissioner, Mike Morath.  While we witnessed a despicable display of arrogance by the Commissioner, I was grateful to finally hear him take ownership of the Common Core  and national alignment in our state standards.  Not only did he grace us with his humor and his wit as it pertains to being dismissive of our State laws, but he took a gleeful sort of pride in his ownership of this behemoth.

We learned from the Governor’s Commissioner and some of his supporters that our children are a profit and loss tick for the end game of Education Reform. We learned that he fully intends to comply with Federal mandates and “what the Federal government expects.” We now understand that he fully intends to monitor our children from cradle to grave for the purposes of “workforce development.”  These measures are not just of academic performance, but actual physical responses to circumstances in the classroom.  I was taken aback by the number of times “real time” was referred to and the number of metrics that will be supplied by this real time data initiative.

This Commission and any of our elected bodies that do not stand against are working toward pitting the people of this State against the government.

This is a pivotal point for education in our State because the powers that be are no longer hiding their intentions.  Monitoring of our children at a Federal level, while denigrating the quality of their education is reminiscent of Communist models that the world has experienced in the past.

Social engineering, diminishing reading, writing and arithmetic in exchange for teaching values, attitudes and beliefs, tracking the moment by moment performance and emotion of school children, dictating the outcomes of their adult lives through the use of data, nanny state government in education… these things are the antithesis of Liberty.  Remember Liberty?  Remember the Republic?  Remember individual sovereignty?  Remember the enumerated powers?

This is a historical movement that will have your names on it.  Which side of the equation will you be on?  We know what to expect of the Beltran’s in this shift, but several of you identify yourselves to your constituents as Conservatives.  Conservatives are liberty minded and understand the rights of the individual. Are you going to sign off on this knowing that it violates every premise that this country was founded upon?  Will you let that rest on your shoulders?  Will you be able to sleep at night knowing that you didn’t at least attempt to stand up for our kids, our state and our nation?

We will soon see because the time to stop it is now, before it fully makes its way into the classroom.  You are either with the children or you are not. Make your position known today.

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Is America Committing Suicide?

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IS AMERICA COMMITTING SUICIDE?
When in 1961 I arrived to the USA this was a Country where laws were respected, students went to school/universities to study and the people, in general, wanted to work.
Now, 55 years later, the fluoride in the water have already affected the brains of the population and the Republican Party apparently also succumbed to it.
I feel sorry not only for the Country where I was born but also for the Country that I adopted as my new Country. At the end of the 1960’s I helped the Republican Party to become a serious Party in Louisiana, and the Republican Party recognized my job with a beautiful diploma of recognition for my job.
The last debate of the Republican Party left me feeling in a very bad mood. Instead of showing what they were offering to save this Country they were fighting each other to the rejoice of the Communists that want to see Hillary Clinton or Barney Sanders as last President of the Republic.
If I would be running to obtain the candidacy of the Republican Party I will be using my time to expose the danger of Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders directing us to the end of the USA as a free Country. If the moderators of the debate try to have me attacking some of the others running from my Party, I would ignore the question and would try to alert the American People of the threat of Hillary or Bernie.
I believe that any candidate that continue to fuel the attacks among Republican candidates is working in consort with the enemies of this Country.
For our children, grand children and great grand children we have to do better and not to descend to such suicidal tactics.
God Bless America, the land of the Free and the Hope of the World.
Dr. Carlos J. Bringuier
February 16, 2016
carlos b
Carlos Jose Bringuier is a Cuban exile in the United States of America who campaigned against Fidel Castro’s government. Bringuier is principally known for his brief connection with Lee Harvey Oswald, the assassin of President John F. Kennedy.
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Texas Magnolia ISD teaching Islam is Tolerant of other Faiths?

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12072606_10153638424131779_2859395518654333288_nWhile the powers at be have purged our American education system of prayer and biblical teaching there is  movement to indoctrinate our children with a positive view of Islam.  The following is an excerpt from a study guide given to students at Magnolia ISD from their History teacher.

Does this teacher not listen to the news and the thousands of Christians that are being slaughtered for their Christian faith?

And we wonder what is wrong with this country.

 

magnolia teacher Islam

 

Learn the true intent of Islam.

http://pamelageller.com/

http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/pages/quran/violence.aspx

http://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/

 

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The Devil’s Pleasure Palace: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of the West

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I have been trying to alert parents and taxpayers of the progressive teaching philosophy that is sweeping our country even in Texas. You will often hear “educrats” use terminology such as “Critical Theory” “Critical Thinking”, etc. It all sounds great on the surface but there is an  underlying agenda to this teaching philosophy and one that is not good. Want to know more about this movement please tune into the following webinar, January 26.

 

 

 

 

 

pleasure palace

 

In the aftermath of World War II, America stood alone as the world’s premier military power. Yet our sense of cultural inferiority remained.  Many of our elites embraced not only the war’s refugees, but many of their ideas as well. Some of them argued that truth was only a social construct and that meaning was based on what the individual wanted.  As a result, although we had just won a war against the forces of nihilism and fascism, the New Nihilists set about dissolving the bedrock of the country, from patriotism to marriage to the family to military service; they have sown (as Cardinal Bergoglio – now Pope Francis – once wrote of the Devil) “destruction, division, hatred, and calumny” – and all disguised as the search for truth.

The Devil’s Pleasure Palace exposes the overlooked movement known as Critical Theory and explains how it took root in America and, once established and gestated, how it has affected nearly every aspect of American life and society.

Michael Walsh is a journalist, author, and screenwriter, whose work includes six novels, seven works of non-fiction, and a hit Disney movie. The former classical music critic of Time magazine, he co-founded Big Journalism with the late Andrew Breitbart and is now a regular contributor of political and cultural commentary to PJ Media and National Review, and an occasional op-ed columnist for the New York Post. Among his awards are the ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award for distinguished music criticism, in 1979, and the American Books Awards prize for fiction for his gangster novel, And All the Saints, in 2004.

 

Joining us in person for a lecture event:

We are looking forward to hosting you here for one of our lectures. In order for you to have the best experience possible, here are a few things you should know as you prepare to join us

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  4. We welcome an open and reasoned discussion of the social and policy topics we cover. However, your registration for our events is an agreement to conduct yourself with respect and courtesy toward our speakers and fellow attendees. FRC reserves the right to deny admission or remove from the premises anyone who conducts himself or herself in a manner which is disruptive, disrespectful, or dangerous.

By attending this event, you agree that the Family Research Council assumes no liability for injury, damage, or loss which may be related in any way to implementation of this policy. Anyone who is removed may be subject to arrest or detention by authorities for violation of this policy or the codes of the jurisdiction of the event. This policy is not designed to censor or limit free speech, but to ensure a safe environment where ideas can be freely exchanged.

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Open Letter to the Argyle ISD School Board- TRANSDISCIPLINARY (Updated)

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By Alice Linahan

Voices Empower

 

As a Mom with a student in Argyle ISD, I am very concerned about the direction our school district is heading.  As our schools embrace 21st Century Learning and the College and Career ready standards, we must ask ourselves as parents and adults; are our children being harmed by this?

As Moms and Dads, we need to step back and start asking “ourselves”…….

1. If our children graduate from high school or college with the attitudes, values, beliefs, behaviors and a worldview that we oppose and we know it is because their teachers have been trained to believe it is their responsibility to be the devil’s advocate and teach our children ‘Critical Thinking’ and to question and even oppose the foundational beliefs of our family; is that really a solid academic education that will serve our children and their future well?

2. Is our child getting college credits in high school more important than protecting our child’s mind and their soul?

3. If your child graduates from college, gets a great high paying job but no longer respects, much less believes, they are worthy of a strong marriage, a free and prosperous country, and that by the grace of God anything is possible; have we done our best to give our child a strong foundation for a happy joy filled life?

Let me give you a personal story from right here in Argyle ISD. This is what “21st Century Learning” also known as getting students “College and Career Ready” looks like in the classroom.

For a little background, my daughter is the only student in her class whose parents have refused to allow her to use a district issued chrome book or google student account.

One day she texted me screen shots of a quiz her AP/Dual Credit English 3 teacher asked the class to take. Because my daughter did not have a chromebook her teacher told her to take the quiz from her cell phone. The lesson plan for the class shows that they were working on group presentations on philosophy (in an English Class) and these quizzes were a part of the research each group was to do. Each group was assigned a Philosophy and after their research, each group gave a presentation to the class. The Philosophy’s the groups were assigned were….

1. Utilitarianism

2. Objectivism

3. Civil DisobedienceIMG_8005

4. Existentialism

5. Categorical Imperative

6. Hierarchy of Human Needs

7. Social Contract

Parents!! Would you want your child taking a quiz called ‘Philosophy Experiments,’ in high school, much less on their district issued Chromebook, that grades their answers, compatibility, and then gives the student a “tension score” on a bar graph. Whatever two answers contradict, it plays devils advocate and makes the student question their beliefs.

Here are just some of the questions asked:

 

* There are no objective moral standards; moral judgements are merely an expression of the values of particular cultures. Agree or Disagree 

* So long as they do not harm others, individuals should be free to pursue their own ends. Agree or Disagree

* It is always wrong to take another persons life. Agree or Disagree 

* The right to life is so fundamental that financial considerations are irrelevant in any effort to save lives. Agree or Disagree 

* Homosexuality is wrong because it is unnatural. Agree or Disagree 

* It is quite reasonable to believe in the existence of a thing without even the possibility of evidence for its existence. Agree or Disagree 

* There exists an all-powerful, loving and good God. Agree or Disagree

* The second world war was a just war. Agree or Disagree 

* There are no objective truths about matters of fact; “truth” is always relative to particular cultures and individuals. Agree or Disagree 

* Atheism is a faith just like any other, because it is not possible to prove the non-existence of God. Agree or Disagree 

* To allow an innocent child to suffer needlessly when one could easily prevent it is morally reprehensible.  Agree or Disagree 

* The holocaust is an historical reality, taking place more or less as the history books report. Agree or Disagree

 

As I said, where there is a conflict with two answers, it analyzes the two and scores the student.

Here is an example……

 Statements 5 and 29: Can you put a price on a human life?

28% of the people who have completed this activity have this tension in their beliefs.

You agreed that:
The right to life is so fundamental that financial considerations are irrelevant in any effort to save lives
But disagreed that:
Governments should be allowed to increase taxes sharply to save lives in the developing world

If the right to life is so fundamental that financial considerations are irrelevant when it comes to making decisions about saving human lives, then that must mean that we should always spend as much money as possible to save lives. If it costs £4 million to save a cancer patient’s life, that money should be spent, period. But if this is true, then surely the West should spend as much money as possible saving lives in the developing world. You may already give $100 dollars a month to save lives in the developing world. But if financial considerations are irrelevant when it comes to saving lives, why not $200, or $1000, or just as much as you can afford? If you do not do so, you are implicitly endorsing the principle that individuals and governments are not obliged to save lives at all financial cost – that one can spend ‘enough’ on saving lives even though spending more, which one could afford to do, would save more lives. This suggests that financial considerations are relevant when it comes to making decisions about saving lives – there is a limit to how much one should spend to save a life.

______________________________________________

28% of the people who have completed this activity have this tension in their beliefs.

You agreed that:
There exists an all-powerful, loving and good God
And also that:
TransdisiplinaryTo allow an innocent child to suffer needlessly when one could easily prevent it is morally reprehensible

These two beliefs together generate what is known as ‘The Problem of Evil’. The problem is simple: if God is all-powerful, loving and good, that means he can do what he wants and will do what is morally right. But surely this means that he would not allow an innocent child to suffer needlessly, as he could easily prevent it. Yet he does. Much infant suffering is the result of human action, but much is also due to natural causes, such as disease, flood or famine. In both cases, God could stop it, yet he does not.

Attempts to explain this apparent contradiction are known as ‘theodicies’ and many have been produced. Most conclude that God allows suffering to help us grow spiritually and/or to allow the greater good of human freedom. Whether these theodicies are adequate is the subject of continuing debate.

 

Do you realize these responses and their data can legally be tracked for research purposes by 3rd party contractors? President Obama changed the regulation on the FERPA law? A student’s private data can be collected without parental consent in the name of “Education Research”. Here is a link you can take the quiz yourself.  http://www.philosophyexperiments.com/health/Default.aspx

After taking this quiz herself, Clinical Mental Health Counselor Joan Landes stated….

“It’s a classic psychological deconstruction technique to put a person in a double bind and collapse his cognitive framework. Then the “leader” picks up the pieces and reassembles them to order. This is an inappropriate use of psychological force on impressionable minds and unformed identities.”-

Now, you might say, what public high school teacher would think this is a good quiz to give and blame it all on the teacher, but…..

That local superintendent is ultimately  in charge of curriculum, and you the locally elected school board are ultimately in charge of approving funding for the professional development of both the teacher and the superintendent. In addition, you are in charge of funding technology used in the classroom that allows for our student’s data to be collected. It has been stated to me that this is an AP/Dual Credit class, therefore it is a college level course and okay. To that I have to ask. Why is this okay in college? It is certainly not appropriate for high school age students.

The challenge with 21st Century Learning/Common Core/College and Career Ready Standards transformation of education, is how teachers are being re- trained to teach. It is their professional development. In addition, administrators are being trained, through their professional development, how to deal with parents who complain. It is actually the teacher who is in danger, because they are many times used as the fall guy. Education is no longer about reading, and writing in a 21st Century English classroom.  It is about the 4 C’s Creativity, Communication, Critical Thinking and Collaboration.

In Texas we said NO to the Common Core National Standards, but we’ve said yes to our teachers being re-trained for 21st Century Learning using the InTASC Model CoreTeaching Standards; Learning Progressions for Teachers.  The Copyright for these standards is owned by the Council of Chief State School Officers, who as you will remember own the copyright to the Common Core National Standards. They are all aligned to a collectivist philosophy of education. Check out standard #5. When you begin to research what is happening, you will see, this is NOT 21st Century Learning it is simply another push for OBE (Outcome Based Education). 

“The teacher understands how to connect concepts and use differing perspectives to engage learners in critical thinking, creativity, and collaborative problem solving related to authentic local and global issues.” 

Clearly worded in the InTASC paper is states; “these standards differ from the original standards in one key respect: These standards are no longer intended only for “beginning” teachers but as professional practice standards.”  

Have you heard the term Transdisiplinary ?

The College Board’s SAT and AP (Advanced Placement) assessments and conceptual frameworks can be described as “Transdisiplinary” in their purpose.

Transdisiplinary is when the function of the subject matter, concept themes in the syllabus, and course frameworks are all used to guide how a student views the world. The technical term most commonly used is lenses. Effectively these lenses become the values, attitudes, and beliefs the students are to be taking away from the curriculum.

Therefore my question is, are you okay with this? As parents are you okay with your child in Argyle ISD being taught using these learning theories and teaching strategies?

Argyle ISD is not an isolated incident. Nor is it isolated to AP/Dual Credit classes.  This is happening in school districts across Texas. (RISD) Richardson ISD held a meeting for angry parents speaking out against (PBL) Project-based learning. In the audio clip below you will hear Tabitha Branum, Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Education (formerly Coppell ISD) describe how teachers are no longer teaching as they did in the past and are being re-trained. She goes on to explain that the STAAR exams no longer ask questions about facts, such as “can you identify this organ” and or “what is the function of this organ?” Then the biology lead teacher explains why they are shifting away from learning facts in exchange for building “social skills”.

I would also like to let you know that my children are NOT allowed to take any surveys online or for the school district, state or federal government. If their grades suffer because of this I would like to let you know about this federal law.

Limits on Survey, Analysis, Evaluations, or Data Collection (United States Code, Title 20 1232h)

(b) Limits on survey, analysis, or evaluations

No student shall be required, as part of any applicable program, to submit to a survey, analysis, or evaluation that reveals information concerning—

(1) political affiliations or beliefs of the student or the student’s parent;

(2) mental or psychological problems of the student or the student’s family;

(3) sex behavior or attitudes;

(4) illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior;

(5) critical appraisals of other individuals with whom respondents have close family relationships;

(6) legally recognized privileged or analogous relationships, such as those of lawyers, physicians, and ministers;

(7) religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs of the student or student’s parent; or

(8) income (other than that required by law to determine eligibility for participation in a program or for receiving financial assistance under such program), without the prior consent of the student (if the student is an adult or emancipated minor), or in the case of an unemancipated minor, without the prior written consent of the parent.

 

 

UPDATE

In preparation for the Argyle ISD school board meeting on Tuesday Jan. 19th, 2016. Here is a link to my public testimony at the Jan. 19th meeting.

 

 

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“Texas School Children To Be Unable To Read Patriotic Documents”

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 patriotic documents

ACTION ALERT:  Texas public school students to be unable to read the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution – no cursive writing to be taught

 

To voice objections to no cursive writing — The public is encouraged to send their comments to the TEA at the following address: TEKS@tea.texas.gov  and/or to write to the Texas State Board of Education members:

http://tea.texas.gov/About_TEA/Leadership/State_Board_of_Education/Board_Members/SBOE_Members/

1.5.16 — ADDENDUM TO MY CRITIQUE OF THE NOV. 2015 ELAR/TEKS DRAFT SENT OUT YESTERDAY–

Today, I am sending out an addendum to the critique of the Nov. 2015 DRAFT OF THE ELAR/TEKS that I sent out yesterday (http://www.educationviews.org/critique-nov-2015-texas-elarteks-draft/ )  in which I verbalized my four Objections to what the Texas English / Language Arts / Reading (ELAR) Review Committee Members had produced.

The reason for this separate addendum is to explain thoroughly my concern that the leadership of the ELAR/TEKS Review Committee Members (RCM) chose to follow the Type #2 philosophy of education as exhibited in the Common Core Standards by taking away cursive handwriting from the Texas public schools. 

Here is my Objection #5 which should be added to the Objections #1 – #4 in yesterday’s critique. I have also added Objection #6 at the end of this addendum:

OBJECTION #5

The present ELAR/TEKS document (Beginning with School Year 2009 to the present) states:

(23)  Oral and Written Conventions/Handwriting, Capitalization, and Punctuation. Students write legibly and use appropriate capitalization and punctuation conventions in their compositions. Students are expected to:

(A)  write legibly in cursive script with spacing between words in a sentence. (http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/rules/tac/chapter110/ch110a.html#110.14)

In the Nov. 2015 ELAR/TEKS Draft, no mention is made of cursive writing to be taught in Grade 3.

 

Texas is one of the few states that requires cursive writing to be taught, starting in Grade 3. However, for some time, this state mandate in the present ELAR/TEKS to teach cursive has been ignored; and many Texas teachers have quit teaching cursive or correct handwriting habits.

 

Because Grade 3 teachers have quit teaching cursive, then the students going forward from Grade 3 have no longer had the ability to write nor to read cursive. Because the skills learned in ELAR are competency-based (build upon one another) and because the ELAR/TEKS set explicit goals at each grade level/course level, once students are taught to master a certain skill, then they are to be held accountable in the future grade levels to demonstrate that mastery.

 

In other words, once students are taught cursive in Grade 3, teachers in the succeeding grade levels can expect students to write cursively and to read text written in cursive writing.

 

The Common Core Standards deliberately do not support the teaching of cursive writing for two reasons:  (1) The agenda behind Obama’s Common Core Standards is to dumb down students to the same common level, and (2) Obama and his administration are indoctrinating students into the social justice agenda.

 

One of the best ways to indoctrinate this and future generations of students is to make sure they can no longer read the historical documents upon which our nation is founded.

 

Beyond the obvious (e.g., personal thank-you notes, friendly letters, etc.), if students can no longer read cursive writing, they will not be able to read the primary sources upon which our country is built — the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, journals, diaries, love letters, historical documents, ledgers, etc.  

 

Students will also not be able to read historical and literary documents that come from Britain and other English-speaking nations. This means that large portions of resources in every museum and library in this country and throughout the world would be unintelligible to generations of non-cursive-reading students. They would be forced to have someone else interpret these documents for them which is a dangerous thing in today’s politically correct world.

 

The advantages of cursive are well documented.  Cursive is a much faster form of handwriting than printing because each letter flows into the next letter. If people are without computers and need to be able to take or write notes, their handwriting speed would be severely impaired if they did not know how to write cursively.   

 

Computers are not always accessible and do not always work. Schools are already finding that out as they put their students in digitized textbooks. When the network or the device goes down, all learning stops!  As schools are forced to cut their technology budgets and the layers of tech support staffers are overcome with the deluge of techie devices in the schools, these “computer down” occurrences are occurring much more regularly.

 

Nothing forces students to pay attention to detail better than their having to write their compositions, test answers, open-response questions, timed writings in longhand; and cursive prioritizes classroom time. 

 

When people go into an office to apply for a job, they generally have to fill out applications in longhand.  Being able to write quickly, neatly, and clearly gives the prospective employer a favorable impression of the applicant.

 

How many of us who go to doctors’ offices, dentists’ offices, and hospital/clinic offices frequently are asked to fill out forms?  Again, being able to write quickly, neatly, and clearly expedites those office visits and gives healthcare workers important information about our health.  

 

We also have credible research done by qualified, peer-reviewed, published researchers that proves cursive is good for the brain.

 

6.2.14 – “What’s Lost As Handwriting Fades” – by Maria Konnikova – New York Times, Science – http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/03/science/whats-lost-as-handwriting-fades.html?_r=0

 

Excerpts from this article:

 

psychologists and neuroscientists say it is far too soon to declare handwriting a relic of the past. New evidence suggests that the links between handwriting and broader educational development run deep.

Children not only learn to read more quickly when they first learn to write by hand, but they also remain better able to generate ideas and retain information. In other words, it’s not just what we write that matters — but how.

“When we write, a unique neural circuit is automatically activated,” said Stanislas Dehaene, a psychologist at the Collège de France in Paris. “There is a core recognition of the gesture in the written word, a sort of recognition by mental simulation in your brain.

“And it seems that this circuit is contributing in unique ways we didn’t realize,” he continued. “Learning is made easier.”

When children had drawn a letter freehand, they exhibited increased activity in three areas of the brain that are activated in adults when they read and write: the left fusiform gyrus, the inferior frontal gyrus and the posterior parietal cortex.

By contrast, children who typed or traced the letter or shape showed no such effect. The activation was significantly weaker.

In another study, Dr. James is comparing children who physically form letters with those who only watch others doing it. Her observations suggest that it is only the actual effort that engages the brain’s motor pathways and delivers the learning benefits of handwriting.

Virginia Berninger, a psychologist at the University of Washington, demonstrated that “When the children composed text by hand, they not only consistently produced more words more quickly than they did on a keyboard, but expressed more ideas… When these children were asked to come up with ideas for a composition, the ones with better handwriting exhibited greater neural activation in areas associated with working memory — and increased overall activation in the reading and writing networks.”

Dr. Berninger goes so far as to suggest that cursive writing may train self-control ability in a way that other modes of writing do not, and some researchers argue that it may even be a path to treating dyslexia. 2012 review suggests that cursive may be particularly effective for individuals with developmental dysgraphia — motor-control difficulties in forming letters — and that it may aid in preventing the reversal and inversion of letters.

the benefits of writing by hand extend beyond childhood. For adults, typing may be a fast and efficient alternative to longhand, but that very efficiency may diminish our ability to process new information. Not only do we learn letters better when we commit them to memory through writing, memory and learning ability in general may benefit.

Two psychologists, Pam A. Mueller of Princeton and Daniel M. Oppenheimer of the University of California, Los Angeles, have reported that in both laboratory settings and real-world classrooms, students learn better when they take notes by hand than when they type on a keyboard…the new research suggests that writing by hand allows the student to process a lecture’s contents and reframe it — a process of reflection and manipulation that can lead to better understanding and memory encoding.

========

 

MY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE ACTUAL HANDWRITING STANDARDS

 

Not only should cursive handwriting be restored to the Nov. 15 ELAR/TEKS Draft going forward, but the teaching of good handwriting habits should be taught systematically beginning in Kindergarten. As I stated in my comments from 1.4.16, the Oral and Written Conventions strand should be restored to the Nov. 2015 ELAR/TEKS Draft going forward, and the following elements should be added to that strand:  

 

KINDERGARTEN

 

The student is expected to:

 

(A)  Practice good posture when seated at a table/desk for writing purposes.

 

(B)  Practice proper pencil gripping (using correct fingers to form vise to hold writing tool) while correctly positioning hand and arm in relationship to paper and desk.

 

(C)  Produce correct formation of letters using starting point, directionality, and ending point for each letter.

 

(D)  Identify the top/bottom, front/back, margins, lines on a sheet of paper.

 

 

 

GRADE 1

 

The student is expected to:

(A)  Practice good posture when seated at a table/desk for writing purposes.

 

(B)  Practice proper pencil gripping (using correct fingers to form vise to hold writing tool) while correctly positioning hand and arm in relationship to paper and desk.

 

(C)  Produce correct formation of letters using starting point, directionality, and ending point for each letter.

 

(D)   Identify margins and margin forming lines.

 

(E)   Identify appropriate times for writing outside the margin lines.

 

(F)   Start writing close to left margin line.

 

(G)   Form all letters so they rest on baseline.

 

(H)   Demonstrate correct starting point and stroke sequence for each letter.

 

(I)    Form both lower and upper case letters in correct manuscript style.

 

(J)   Form all letters so they occupy proper space in relationship to other letters.

 

(K)  Allow space between words.

 

(L)   Start next line at the left margin when one line is complete.

 

(M)  Form both lower and upper case letters in correct handwriting style.

 

 

GRADE 2

 

The student is expected to:

(A)  Distinguish cursive from printed  writing.

 

(B)  Explain the purpose of cursive writing.

 

(C)  Identify appropriate times to use printed writing (e.g., maps, charts) or cursive.

 

(D)  Demonstrate how to form the connecting line between any two given letters.

 

(E)  Produce neat, legible cursive writing (e.g., consistent slant, correct letter formation, correct size).

 

GRADE 3 – ENG. IV

 

The student is expected to:

 

(A)  Use neat, legible cursive writing on most school work.

 

(B)  Produce neat, legible cursive writing (e.g., consistent slant, correct letter formation.

 

OBJECTION #6

 

In the Nov. 2015 ELAR/TEKS Draft, the wording is as follows in the Introductions for K through Eng. IV:

 

Introduction

 

(a)(6) Statements that contain the word “including” reference content that must be mastered, while those containing the phrase “such as” are intended as possible illustrative examples.

 

I would like to see this wording clarified by deleting the above explanation and inserting the following:

 

If the curriculum element says “such as” or “e.g.,” – (1) teachers may teach, (2) textbooks/instructional materials must include, (3) the element preceded by “such as” or “e.g.” may or may not be tested on STAAR/EOC’s

 

If the curriculum element says “including” – (1) teachers must teach, (2) textbooks/instructional materials must include, (3) element is permissible to be tested on STAAR/EOC’s

 

 

 

Donna Garner

Wgarner1@hot.rr.com

 

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Texas Grocery Magnate Forbids ‘Open Carry,’ Opposes School Choice, Supports Sanctuary Cities

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Breitbart

open carry

by Merrill Hope 3 Jan 2016

 

Charles Butt, the Texas billionaire magnate behind the H-E-B supermarket chain which forbid the open carry of firearms law that went into effect January 1, 2016, opposes school choice, funds anti-school choice lobbyists, and is even credited for his role in killing a 2011 state bill banning “sanctuary cities.”

Butt is the 2015 fourth richest Texan and Forbes’ 44th wealthiest person in America with a net worth of $10.7 billion known for funneling hard earned assets into educational lobby groups that fight school choice, although the 77-year-old grocer received a private Ivy League college education that included an undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania’s prestigious Wharton School and a master’s in business administration from Harvard. Texas Watchdog stated Butt believes that private competition “undermines government schools.”

His vested interest in Texas public education includes H-E-B handing out $800,000 a year to public education pursuits through the Excellence in Education Awards. In 2006, he founded Raise Your Hand Texas, which lists Butt as an advisor. The Texas Tribune describes Raise Your Hand Texas as a “seasoned lobbying force on education issues at the Capitol.”

However, Raise Your Hand Texas is a corporate sponsor of the Texas Tribune and Butt contributed $500,000 to the Tribune in 2014, with his all-time contribution to them at $1,150,000. Last year, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, primary funder of the Common Core State Standards, donated $249,763 to the Tribune.

Texas Watchdog charged Raise Your Hand Texas “pushes for increased public school funding while opposing every substantive education reform at the state legislature,” including supporting and funding candidates who oppose reform efforts to the state’s education system, and measures that expand parental rights.” The dubbed Butt a key player blocking school choice instead “propping up a faltering public monopoly.”

David Anthony, who heads up Raise Your Hand Texas, was one of 35 Texas public school superintendents instrumental in formulating a new vision for “future ready” classrooms under the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA), another powerful education lobby.

In 2015, Breitbart Texas reported on the jarring conflict-of-interest that arose at the onset of the state’s last legislative session because House Education Committee Chairman Jimmie Don Aycock’s daughter, Michelle Smith, works for Austin-based lobbyist powerhouse HillCo Partners, which Texas Monthly placed “at the top of the lobby pyramid” since 1998. Smith’s two key clients were Raise Your Hand Texas and Fast Growth School Coalition (FGSC), which promotes rapid growth and spending on building new public schools statewide. Public outcry over the father-daughter connection put Aycock’s chairmanship at risk. Breitbart Texas reported that Smith withdrew her lobbyist registration status at the onset of the 84th Legislature to thwart that outcome.

Butt also funds the Texas Parent PAC, the largest recipient of his 2014 contributions at $1,498,000 and recognized as a top “power PAC” in the state. Texas House Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio), who appoints the House Education Committee, received $168,000 from Butt that year. Butt contributed $161,458 directly to the committee members, according to the Austin American-Statesman. Texas Watchdog highlighted that the largest contribution chunk, $76,920 went to Straus’ committee chair pick Aycock (R-Killeen), also the lead author on the state’s 2013 college and career ready standards, House Bill 5.

Texas Parent PAC contributed another $81,931 to House Education Committee members, according to Texas Watchdog. The Parent PAC has proudly endorsed Aycock since his 2006 election, although he announced last summer he would not run again. In 2013, he voted against vouchers. Last year, Senate Bill 4, an education tax credit scholarship bill designed to help low-income and at risk K-12 students, was sidelined in the House Ways and Means Committee after passing in the Senate. The House never gave it a hearing.

Yet, in the 11th hour of the legislative session, the House flung House Bill 1891 out for a vote. This big government community schools initiative backed by the Texas American Federation of Teachers was the union’s solution to combat public charters, Breitbart Texas reported. Its inspiration was the American Federation of Teachers Promise Schools, a co-initiative with the Albert Shanker Institute, a proponent of Common Core state standards.

Like Raise Your Hand Texas, Texas Parent PAC opposes school choice, which means different things to different advocates on both sides of the debate. Breitbart Texas reported the premise behind “school choice” as educational options decided upon by families and not educrats whether that choice is public, charter, private, parochial, or home school. School choice opponents often depict advocates as trying to dismantle public education and privatize schooling, attack teachers, and drain taxpayer funds from public schools.

“Not so,” Americans for Prosperity State Director Michael Hasson told Breitbart Texas last year. He said the point of school choice was to “maximize” educational opportunities. “Education is the gateway to the American Dream. It’s ridiculous to assume we can eradicate the system. We want to strengthen it,” he said.

In 2013, Raise Your Hand Texas supported virtual (online) education and adding more charter schools, although they pushed for legislation that limited the reach of the proposals backed by pro-school choice advocates, the Texas Tribune reported, saying Butt created Raise Your Hand Texas to “combat private school vouchers.” Groups like Texas Freedom Network oppose school choice because they do not want taxpayer dollars to move out of the system with the child. Arizona, Florida, and Nevada embraced education savings style “voucher” accounts (ESA) as a means to flee failing schools and empower parents in making educational decisions for their children.

In December, the Texas Education Agency released its Public Education Grant (PEG) list for its 5.2 million publicly educated K-12 students and it identified the degree to which the system failed — 1,532 campuses landed on the list for poor test scores or unacceptable ratings, an increase from the previous year’s 1,199 failing schools. Texas has approximately 8,600 campuses totalling 1,200 school districts and charters.

Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Kent Grusendorf described a core conundrum of the public education “monopoly.” He wrote: “Thousands of great people work in the field of public education. Unfortunately, union leaders, bureaucrats and politicians all think they can tell teachers what is best. We must set educators free. We must set our children free.” He underscored that historically “monopolies are inherently inefficient in the allocation of resources,” adding that Texans spend over a quarter of a million dollars per year for a classroom of 25 students where the average teacher earns $50,000. “In order to advance professionally, great teachers must leave the classroom, where they have great value to the institution, and move into administration, where in many cases, they add less value,” he noted.

In 2011, Butt, along with Houston homebuilder Bob Perry, no relation to former Gov. Rick Perry, worked to kill important legislation in the fight against illegal immigration. H-E-B operates 300-plus markets in Texas and also 52 in Mexico. Through HillCo Partners, they applied pressure to the state’s House panel to block Perry’s anti-sanctuary cities measure. The supermarket mogul gave nearly $2.2 million to squash the bill, the Dallas Morning News reported, footnoting that Texans for Public Justice ranked Butt third among givers to legislative candidates in 2008.

That blocked legislation would have allowed law enforcement officers to inquire about the immigration status of people they detained, the Houston Chronicle reported. Since the Texas legislature failed to pass any anti-sanctuary cities measures, Gov. Greg Abbott made this a 2015 priority, coming up with his own plan to deal with law enforcement officials who won’t enforce the law, Breitbart Texas’ Bob Price reported. In October, Abbott called to end sanctuary city policies in Texas, Price also reported. That came in response to a Dallas County Sheriff who intended to lighten up on immigration holds for jailed illegals and legal aliens, no longer detaining them for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Abbott said these types of sanctuary city policies will “no longer be tolerated in Texas.” A week later, he announced a new plan to strip state grant funding from county sheriffs with a Sanctuary City policy of not honoring ICE detainers, Breitbart Texas reported.

The Texas H-E-B stores will continue to abide by state CHL laws and allow concealed carry of handguns in stores..

Follow Merrill Hope on Twitter @OutOfTheBoxMom.

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Gov. Abbott Makes Bad Choice for Texas Commissoner of Education

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Mike-Morath

 

“Gov. Abbott Makes Bad Choice for Texas Comm. of Education”

By Donna Garner

12.14.15

 

 

As a conservative, I appreciate Gov. Greg Abbott for the many courageous positions he has taken for Texas; but he really missed it on this one!

 

I cannot think of very many people whom Gov. Greg Abbott could have appointed who would have been a worse choice than Mike Morath as Texas Commissioner of Education. (12.14.15 — Press release- “Gov. Abbott Appoints Mike Morath As Texas Education Commissioner — http://gov.texas.gov/news/appointment/21773 )

 

 

Mike Morath is supporting almost everything bad in education – the same Type #2 philosophy of education that opens the door to subjective, digitized curriculum and assessments found in Common Core/CSCOPE;  the same “innovative” school model pushed by TASB and TASA with their 21st century transformational “visioning” approach to education; and the greedy consultants, lobbyists, and vendors who make a fortune off education’s “Golden Goose” of public dollars. 

    

 

Gov. Abbott had previously appointed Mike Morath as the chairman of the Texas Commission on Next Generation Assessments and Accountability (NGAA).  It seems clear to me that the purpose of this commission is to recommend to the Texas Legislature that they replace the traditional public school classroom (where teachers teach fact-based  curriculum directly and systematically while face-to-face with their students) WITH the 21st century transformational model where students receive all their instruction through digitized curriculum.  Grading is done through subjective assessments  (e.g., portfolios, projects, group work); and curriculum focuses on students’ feelings, emotions, and opinions – not on hard facts with right-or-wrong answers. Students graduate through online and dual credit courses with wishy-washy accountability standards and unsecure testing procedures.     

 

Obviously if Mike Morath was chosen as the chair of this NGAA commission, he intends to implement this same Type #2 philosophy across Texas as the newly appointed Commissioner of Education.

 

America has hundreds of years of historical data to prove that the traditional Type #1 philosophy of education produces success.  Americans became the leader of the world because of the many scientists, inventors, technicians, entrepreneurs, engineers, writers, historians, and businessmen who used their Type #1 education to elevate themselves to great heights. They were educated on a Big Chief Tablet.

 

Where is the proof that the Type #2 digitized “global citizen of the world” approach will make America great?  In fact, there is no long-term, independent, peer-reviewed research to prove that that method of education works. 

 

To be very honest, we see just the opposite when we look around our society and see the ever-growing numbers of people educated through the Type #2 philosophy of education who are sorely lacking in the most basic knowledge and skills. 

 

THE LAUGHABLE PRESS RELEASE

 

I do not mean to be unfairly critical, but it is almost laughable for the Governor’s office to try to boost the confidence of the public in Mike Morath by mentioning his less than one year of teaching experience (computer science) after a teacher had unexpectedly resigned. 

 

My hint to Governor’s office:  “One year or even less of teaching experience doth not a teacher make.”

 

Another laughable part of the Governor’s press release is the emphasis on Mike Morath’s years on the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees. Anyone who has been following education in Texas very long knows that DISD is one of the worst functioning public school districts in Texas as shown by mountains of hard, verifiable data, including numerous articles published by the Dallas Morning News.  Here are but a few of them:

 

7.7.15 – “Dallas ISD’s Imagine 2010 Effort Fails To Prop up Troubled Schools” – Matthew Haag – Dallas Morning Newshttp://www.dallasnews.com/news/education/headlines/20150707-dallas-isd-s-imagine-2020-effort-fails-to-prop-up-troubled-schools.ece

 

“Results from the latest STAAR exams show that most of the initial 21 schools in the Imagine 2020 program are worse off than before it started…Among the 14 elementary schools, a majority of them have lower passing rates on the five STAAR exams since Imagine 2020 began.”

 

6.28.15 –  “Fact Check: Was the DISD Miracle Real?” – by Jeffrey Weiss, Matthew Haag – Dallas Morning News –http://www.dallasnews.com/news/education/headlines/20150627-fact-check-was-the-disd-miracle-real.ece

 

“Evaluation: The claim that minority students in Dallas are twice as likely to pass Advanced Placement exams than anywhere else in the nation is not supported by evidence. The data used did not include many urban districts, and at least one urban district beat Dallas.”

 

 

5.22.15 – “Little Progress Seen on Dallas ISD’s STAAR Results” – by Jeffrey Weiss, Matthew Haag, Holly K. Hacker – Dallas Morning Newshttp://www.dallasnews.com/news/education/headlines/20150522-little-progress-seen-on-dallas-isds-staar-results.ece

 

“STAAR test results released Friday by Dallas ISD offer little evidence of systemic progress…Compared with last year, the passing rate dropped for eight of 11 exams in grades three through eight…Similarly, compared with results from 2012 — a higher percentage of students failed this year in eight of 11 exams.”

 

========

 

MIKE MORATH’S FAILURE WITH HOME RULE

 

Even the home-rule initiative in Dallas ISD that Mike Morath championed ended up as a total failure.  Morath helped start a group with the misnomer of a name — “Support Our Public Schools.”  In reality this group wanted to turn Dallas ISD into a home-rule charter district that would have been run by a handful of high-level people with no real accountability and no elected school board members to whom the public could have turned with their concerns. 

 

These two articles chronicle Morath’s failed attempt at home-rule: 

 

1.21.15 – “Dallas ISD Home-Rule Commission Votes Against Writing Charter” – by Matthew Haag – Dallas Morning Newshttp://www.dallasnews.com/news/education/headlines/20150120-dallas-isd-home-rule-commission-votes-against-writing-charter.ece

 

“The effort to overhaul the way Dallas ISD operates began with a bang a year ago but ended with a whimper Tuesday…The home-rule initiative launched in March with a petition drive and support from influential politicians and wealthy backers. But the public’s enthusiasm never matched their fervor…a home-rule district could undermine people’s democratic rights.”

 

5.14.14 –  “Group Pushing Home Rule for Dallas ISD Ready To Move Forward” – by Matthew Haag and Tawnell D. Hobbs — Dallas Morning Newshttp://www.dallasnews.com/news/education/headlines/20140514-group-pushing-home-rule-for-dallas-isd-ready-to-move-forward.ece

 

Mike Morath, who helped start Support Our Public Schools and is the only DISD trustee who backs the effort…Some opponents don’t trust the home-rule leaders, including its chief funder, Houston billionaire John Arnold…Support Our Public Schools spent 10 weeks collecting signatures and paid people to get them…Some fear the effort is about taking control of DISD’s $1.2 billion annual budget.”

 

WHY WAS MIKE MORATH CHOSEN?

 

In a nutshell, “It ain’t what you know but who you know.” 

 

Mike Morath is cozy with Houston billionaire John Arnold (of former Enron fame).  John Arnold established The Arnold Foundation that is pushing school choice. The Arnold Foundation works closely with Julie Linn of Texans for Education Reform.  Linn, who used to work for an education company that designed online courses, became an education advisor to Gov. Perry and then to Gov. Abbott. 

 

Both Mike Morath and Julie Linn seem to have had no real teaching experience, yet we are supposed to accept both as “experts” on how and what should be taught to help students become well-educated citizens.  I find this extremely hard to believe after having taught for 33+ years myself.

 

As I and other people have said many times before, “We are not against school choice; but when every school in America is following the same Type #2 philosophy of education, then there really is no choice for anyone.” 

 

Mike Morath is not the right person for the Texas Commissioner of Education. He will not support whole-heartedly the Type #1 curriculum standards that the elected members of the Texas State Board of Education have worked so hard to adopt.  Morath’s philosophy of education is very closely attuned to that of the Obama administration’s Type #2 Common Core.  I am terribly disappointed in Gov. Abbott’s choice of Mike Morath as the Texas Commissioner of Education.  

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BREAKING: NCLB REWRITE BILL JUST RELEASED AT 9:30 A. M. THIS MORNING

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Nov 30, 2015 by

fix nclb

BREAKING: NCLB REWRITE BILL JUST RELEASED AT 9:30 A. M. THIS MORNING

 

11.30.15 — The NCLB rewrite bill was just released to the public at 9:30 A. M. this morning: http://edworkforce.house.gov/uploadedfiles/every_student_succeeds_act_-_conference_report.pdf

 

The NCLB reauthorization bill is 1,059 pp. and is to be voted on by the House in two days (Dec. 2, 2015). Remember that the House has been on Thanksgiving recess and just returned to their offices.

 

Speaker Paul Ryan should be ashamed of himself for trying to push through a bill that neither the House members nor the public has had time to read.  What happened to the 60-day rule and with his promises of transparency?  

 

MESSAGE FOR ALL CONGRESSMEN:

 

We have gone this long without rewriting the NCLB bill, and we can wait until after the 2016 elections.  We as the American people do not trust this President, and we certainly do not trust any NCLB reauthorization bill that he would sign.

 

We also do not want a repeat of ObamaCare in which a similar omnibus bill was passed unscrupulously, has caused mass chaos in our healthcare system, and has led to increased debt and suffering.

 

Congressmen, we expect you to vote “NO” on the reauthorization of NCLB and to wait until we get another President and possibly other Congressmen in place after the elections of 2016.

 

Donna Garner

Wgarner1@hot.rr.com

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Takeover of American Universities

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www.drcarolehhaynes.com. 

 

 

Across America storm clouds are gathering. America is under assault by left wing revolutionaries.

Takeover of American Universities

For decades American universities have been undergoing a fundamental change. It is there that the radical left molds the views of the students who are targeted as agents of permanent change for American culture and freedoms. The Progressive ideology, which rejects America’s founding principles, overturns moral norms, and seeks to destroy liberty and free enterprise, is dominant at a majority of American colleges and universities. Students are ignorant of our Western and American heritage and the true meaning of our Constitution. We are losing those precious freedoms bequeathed to us by our Founding Fathers. 

University campus mobs are growing in strength and numbers, led by a very vocal minority with outrageous demands targeted against an individual rather than the university, per Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals method – the bible for those seeking to overthrow a nation.

On more than 1,000 American colleges and universities a radical left campaign is raging to force divestment by universities of their investments in fossil fuels.

On November 10, 2015 the National Association of Scholars (NAS) published “Inside Divestment: The Illiberal Movement To Turn A Generation Against Fossil Fuels,” which documents the real purpose of the divestment campaign. Director of research projects at NAS and author of Inside Divestment Rachelle Peterson said, “The organizers’ goal is not to cause colleges to divest, but to anger students at the refusal of colleges to divest fully and to turn their frustration into long-term antipathy toward the modern fossil fuel-based economy.”

Peter Wood, president of NAS explained,

The movement pretends to change the way we generate energy, but its actual aim is to generate resentment, which is fuel for political demagoguery.  The ultimate beneficiaries are rich people whose investments in ‘green energy’ will prosper only if they can trick the public to strand our reserves of coal, oil, and gas underground. They favor high-priced, inefficient technologies that happen to require massive government subsidies coupled with sweeping new government powers.  Students drawn by ‘save the world’ rhetoric and prevented from ever hearing arguments on the other side have become willing pawns for a movement that, rightly understood, is profoundly anti-democratic and that will also consign much of humanity to perpetual poverty. 

Opponents to the radicals’ divestment campaign are bullied and smeared. Why would serious students waste their time and money in such an evil and hostile environment!

Consider a few of the latest headlines about campus life:

  • Dartmouth students lead profane Black Lives Matter protest”
  • “Black Vanderbilt prof. latest target of racial protests”
  • Amherst students demand crackdown against free speech”
  • Public university steers students, dollars to Planned Parenthood”
  • Afrikan Black Coalition seeks to ‘overthrow the Constitution,’ ‘stop white people’”
  • Yale student protesters allegedly spit on free speech advocates”
  • Claremont students feel marginalized, demand resources and resignations”
  • “Second Video: Yale, Cornell, and Syracuse administrators destroy ‘oppressive’ Constitution” 

During the Republican debate last week, Senator Marco Rubio said that welders earn more than philosophers. Although his information about salaries was inaccurate, he did have a point. Welders earn considerably less than philosophers but there are more jobs available for welders than for philosophers. Philosophers do possess college credentials but, for recent graduates, there is quite probably a mountain of debt along with that degree and a distinct possibility that the graduate will have difficulty in securing a job to retire the debt.

So the question is this: what value are students receiving for their high-priced degrees? One parent tweeted that sending her child to welding school appears to be preferable to wasting her money at Amherst. A student tweeted that since college is now a joke, he has chosen a trade school instead.

Parents and students can starve these radical education beasts by spending their money at conservative institutions that focus on old-fashioned higher learning. Hillsdale College is widely known for its classical education and graduates who have gone forward to positively influence our government, the economy, and our culture. Outside of military academies, it is one of the few colleges that requires every student to take a course on the Constitution to graduate.

Radical left wing professors can spew their vicious hatred of America and our values and traditions ONLY if someone is willing to pay them to do so.

Let’s give those left wing revolutionaries pink slips and shut down the institutions that provide them a platform to destroy our nation — paid for by we the people!

Your Zip Code Is Now Under the Federal Government’s Control

So you moved to a pricey address to provide you and your family a safe environment from violence, drugs, murders, robberies and to have good schools for the kids. Forget that!

The Obama administration thinks you are discriminating and aims to turn your world, your neighborhood, and your schools upside down.

Through Affirmatively Further Fair Housing (AFFH), President Obama is robbing the suburbs to pay for big city costs. This rabid Saul Alinsky community organizer bought into the insane idea of kool-aid people that urban decay is the fault of those fled to the suburbs with their tax dollars to escape the urban corruption, violence, high taxes, and terrible schools.

In spite of all the government rhetoric, AFFH is about government mandated desegregation of neighborhoods.

AFFH will override local zoning authority and expand federal control over where and how Americans live. Suburban neighborhoods will be forced to build more high-density Section 8 housing in affluent neighborhoods for low income people. If your city has accepted HUD funding, there is no choice but to abide by the radical initiative of AFFH! Not to do so will means the loss of millions of dollars in federal funding.

With Section 8 housing in a neighborhood, schools tend to trend downward in student performance, graduation rates, and college placements. In turn, this decreases property values which results in lower property taxes. For those ISDs which have passed bond issues, lower property taxes will affect the ability of the city to repay the debt. So the vicious cycle is repeated with a tax increase and taxpayer flight to the suburbs.

Yet AFFH is designed to stifle the growth of suburbs. AFFH is really about changing the way Americans live. We are being forced into very high density cities and into mass transportation rather than cars. AFFH will end American local self-rule by a federal regionalist system.

This is the United Nations Agenda 21 playing out around us. It’s much easier to control people in compact areas who are without individual transportation. This restricts movement by the people and makes it much easier for the government to watch who is going where. Federal control is being tightened over education and the minds of our children with the pending passage of ESEA in Washington.

All is going as planned by the leftwing revolutionaries.

How to Stop AFFH

The Gosar Bill, H.R. 1995 designed to stop AFFH, has been filed but has been stalled in the House Judiciary Committee since May 15, 2015. Realistically, the only way we can restore local control is by joint action of a Republican president and a Republican Congress to rescind AFFH and restrict the reach of disparate impact litigation.

Stop All Muslim Immigration to America — Forever!

What do we want America to be like and look like in 5, 10, or 50 years? Do we want to place the American experiment into mothballs? The answer to this question will be determined by our immigration policy.

Do we want to continue to open our doors to illiterates, unskilled labor, and poor people who come here not to assimilate or even to learn our language but for the handouts?

The world is watching in horror as Muslim invaders swarm over Europe, behaving like savages and murdering their hosts. Do we want to open our doors to savages who have a centuries old history of moving into a country, increasing their numbers, killing the citizens, and taking over the host country?

Our choices are these: restore and continue our Christian traditions and values, become a secular nation, or become a Muslim nation. If we try to combine all three, we will look like Europe.

Immigration is not just about the workers, jobs, and economics. Immigration is about the people who become citizens because they determine what our nation and our government will become in the future. 

For those who quibble about radical versus moderate Muslims, the difference is this. Radical Muslims believe that the world must submit NOW to Allah while moderates believe the world will submit to Allah – LATER. The message is the same – the world MUST submit to Allah! When Muslims talk about world peace they really mean that the world has submitted to Islam! It’s not a matter of whether they intend to takeover America, it’s a matter of whether it is NOW or LATER! If we continue to allow them to enter our country, the American Dream will be destroyed. Our existence will be that of beheadings, stoning, whippings, body parts mutilation, and female genital mutilation. A new period of Dark Ages will begin.

Muslims Can Proselytize, But Christians Can’t

Even though American public schools are prohibited by law from proselytizing for a religion, this does not seem to include Islam. Saudi oil money has for decades bought the “right” for Muslims to proselytize in the classroom, teaching non-Muslim students how to practice Islam under the guise of teaching Middle East history, culture, and Arabic.

The purpose for learning Arabic is that Islam requires Muslims to read the Qur’an in Arabic. So how come American public schools are not teaching Hebrew so that Jewish students can read the Holy Bible in Hebrew?

Here are a few of the proselytizing classroom activities in schools across the nation.

  • chant “Praise be to Allah.
  • recite aloud Islamic prayers
  • memorize the Muslim profession of faith
  • wear a necklace with the emblem of the Muslim star and moon crescent
  • wear a burqa
  • wear a robe
  • kneel on a rug and pray while facing in the direction of Mecca
  • learn the Five Pillars of Islam
  • memorize verses of the Qur’an
  • visit a mosque

Of course, if an infidel Christian parent complains, he (I realize that I have committed the unpardonable crime of using “he” to refer to either male or female, but the term ♫ was good for our Founders so it’s good enough for me ♫) is labeled intolerant, racist, hate monger, or worse. The non-compliant Christian student is bullied by the administration and grades and even graduation can be impacted.

Muslims bring neither skills nor money and intend for their host country to permanently support them and to adapt to their ways.

Japan Has It Right on Muslims

In America, we are seeing a rapid influx of Muslims who refuse to even make eye contact in local stores. We are providing them free daycare, free education, free cell phones, free housing, free transportation, free medical care, and cash for their every need. They can bring in their relatives through chain migration. In return, these arrogant and ruthless people despise us and demand even more.

In America, Muslims are demanding foot washing baths at airports, halal food in jails, Arabic studies in public schools and universities, and the banning of pork from public places. They proselytize in public schools while denying the same to Christians. There have been honor killings in Texas and other states.

Our Constitutional Republic founded on Judeo-Christian principles is totally incompatible with Islam and Sharia law. Islam is a system — religion, military, and political — with the Quran calling for the killing of anyone who is not a Muslim, even if they are family members. Bill Federer at American Minute compares the Quran and the Constitution to show how incompatible they are.

Since the Bible and Quran are completely opposite in their teachings, it is impossible to uphold the Constitution using the Quran.

Muslims are open about their intent to shred the Constitution and install Shari’a as the law of the land in America. Their rationale is that Shari’a law is from Allah while the Constitution is manmade.

Japan has chosen to approach Islam differently, both officially and publicly and so has avoided the problems of the West. At the diplomatic level, senior officials in Japan rarely entertain Muslim leaders and rarely visit Muslim countries. The relationship extends only to the Japanese importation of oil and gas products from some Muslim countries.

Muslims who go to Japan are usually employees of foreign companies, although the official policy is to deny entry to Muslims, even engineers, doctors, and managers. Japanese corporations seeking foreign workers let it be known that Muslims need not apply. Construction workers brought in through foreign contractors keep a very low profile.

Permanent residency is seldom granted to Muslims. The official policy is not to grant citizenship to Muslims, regardless of how long they have lived in Japan.

If Muslims are caught proselytizing for Islam, they can be deported and/or jailed.

It is difficult to import Quarans and few mosques exist. The establishment of Muslim organizations is forbidden. Few Arabic classes are found in universities. Men are expected to pray at home and not prostrate themselves collectively in public areas unless they wish to risk jail and/or deportation.

Halal food is not readily available in supermarkets and Shari’a law does not exist at all.

Unlike Americans who get caught in the politically correct trap of trying to distinguish between radical and moderate Muslims, Japan assumes that all Muslims are fundamentalists who are unwilling to give up their barbaric ways and Shari’a law.

Unlike Americans, the Japanese do not find it necessary to apologize for their attitude toward Muslims and their officials politely refrain from answering questions about their discrimination of Muslims.

Unlike America, Japan does not have organizations to defend Muslims against the government nor are there contractors making billions of dollars to resettle Muslim refugees.

Japan, unlike America, protects its workers from migrant workers who would take the jobs of natives. They believe that Japanese jobs are for Japanese workers, even if the labor cost is higher.

We must stop the guilt trip and decide if the United States of America that was founded in 1789 is the nation we want today for ourselves and our children. If it is, then we must return to the Constitution as it was intended by our founders.

We must send packing all immigrants, activist judges, the U.N., and any others who want to change our national heritage and our Constitutional Republic. There are other countries they can destroy, but not ours.

 

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Emotional Child Abuse at “Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts”

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fort worth academy

 

I was contacted by mother, Carrie Huffman today regarding the emotional abuse of her daughter by teacher, Patricia Jacobson at the Forth Worth Academy of Fine Arts. Ms. Huffman has contacted and reached out to the school administration repeatedly with no satisfaction regarding the treatment of her daughter.  Ms. Huffman has also contacted her local police department seeking help in resolving the situation. A detective has now been assigned to the case.

Ms. Huffman posted the following on her facebook page.

2015-11-10_17-14-44

 

Below is a letter to the Texas Education Agency seeking their assistance in this matter. Will TEA or the school protect this child? 

 

Craig Shreckengast

*** Please not at the bottom of the page please view principal, Mr. Shreckengast  professional  response to this blog.******

 

November 4,2015 Carrie Huffman c/o Kailey Huffman

Texas Education Agency

Re: Complaint of abuse to minor child and administrative negligence by Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts

Texas Education Agency My daughter Kailey is an advanced art student at FWAFA. She has an art teacher Patricia Jacobson two class periods everyday. Jacobson is abusive not only to Kailey but to several of the children. She is emotionally,mentally and verbally abusive, then tries to be physically affectionate. She screams,cusses, calls names, humiliates, etc. and has for a while. The administration refuses to acknowledge any wrong doing despite the constant reports. Parents have had to pull their children out of school over this teacher because of their refusal to protect the children. That seems serious yet it’s ignored. Kailey has put up with Jacobson yelling, humiliating, being threatening by standing over her screaming at her repeatedly to stand up right then etc. Kailey has begged me to please let her handle it knowing that reaching out to anyone simply gets her called into a meeting with Jacobson whom then sugar coats her behavior and makes it appear as if my child just misunderstands her intentions. Then when Jacobson is alone with the kids it’s hell to pay. Kailey spent a week in the counselors office about a month ago during Jacobson’s class period crying and unable to attend her class due to fear of her lashing out yet again. Kailey has generalized anxiety disorder and Jacobson is well aware of this. Monday November 2, 2015 after telling Kailey in her first period class that her painting was nasty, Jacobson grabbed a paintbrush mixed the colors on her pallet and painted all across Kailey’s canvas. Then Jacobson yelled “now fix it!” My daughter said yes ma’am, doing all she could to hold it together until she could get out of the class and make it to the restroom. Two class periods later sadly it started again. Kailey is new to what they are working on in this class which is AP fibers. She requested help previously and the teacher told her she would help when the other kids were at that point. She told her to undo and redo hers repeatedly while waiting for help. Which is what she did. The teacher then loudly started to accuse my daughter of not doing anything and asking if she planned to actually work that day at all. Jacobson knew she didn’t know how to proceed to the next step and started patronizing her because another student with 6 years experience had more done. The other student spoke up about her experience and then Jacobson began really yelling and saying you’re gonna have to take this home and actually do something for once. Kailey replied yes ma’am and I can work on it in my 8th period class because it’s my art practice period. Jacobson yelled at her to stop making excuses and trying to manipulate her like she does everyone else in her life. Yelling at Kailey again in front of the class. Kailey finally started to tear up at which time Jacobson informed her she better figure out a better way to deal with her than crying about it. She told her to stop crying. My daughter tried really hard to compose herself but Jacobson demanded Kailey look her in the face which made it impossible for her. She continued to demand Kailey speak to her like an adult but trying to stop crying and trying to talk at the same time doesn’t really work. Jacobson however continued and Kailey started to have a panic attack and struggle to breathe. Jacobson then demanded my child go get a mirror and watch herself. Continually yelling that she couldn’t watch if she was crying and she better stop. My daughter struggling to breathe and trying desperately to do so Jacobson said, you can stop that right now because it won’t work with me. Jacobson then patronizing my child insisted she mimic her breathing saying its like this taking in a deep breath then blowing it out sarcastically. When Kailey couldn’t because she was actually having a panic attack, (not a chosen behavior) it angered Jacobson even more. My daughter began to get light headed because she couldn’t get good breaths. She was afraid to put her head down so she tried to hold her head up with her hand so she didn’t look away from the mirror. This infuriated Jacobson and she told her to get her hands off her face and keep them off. Jacobson then said you are gonna have to find a better way to deal with me and that Kailey should get on some medication so she could deal with life. Totally out of line considering for one she isn’t a mental health professional, her parent and has no Right to talk about Kailey’s private issues in front of the class! After about 15 minutes Kailey was able to somehow get her breathing under control and Jacobson finally backed off. Kailey tried to just keep her head down focusing on her work. Within about ten minutes Jacobson started again. Kailey tried not to cry but she kept on. Jacobson grabbed Kailey by the face with both hands forcing her to look at her while she spoke. Jacobson insisted Kailey come to her when she was feeling anxious and they would work through it together. Still holding her face Jacobson pulled Kailey toward her and kissed her on the forehead then walked away. She walked back over shortly thereafter and said they would figure out a better way for Kailey to handle her anxiety. Then she pulled Kailey close to her forcing her to hug her. Absolutely not! I believe this is another way for her to make Kailey feel vulnerable to her control and aware of her ability to make her behavior appear to others that she cares. Kailey didn’t want to be touched by Jacobson at all and it’s just another controlling move on her part. Kailey asked repeatedly to go to the restroom or the counselor and she was told no that was just another escape. I have told her in the past if she ever gets this way to get up and leave the room it is also in her 504 that she be permitted to do so. At one point Kailey tried to get up and leave but Jacobson immediately bowed up to her and said sit back down now! We went to the principal Craig Shrekengast whom asked Kailey what appeared to trigger Jacobson’s outburst. Kailey said a lot of times she just comes in cranky but one thing is if you are absent she will be really mean when you return. Shrekengast looked at Kailey and said well do you have a lot of absences? This bothered me and I said wait a second, are you saying if she had a lot it would justify her behavior? He immediately looked at me and said I am talking to Kailey right now. I reminded him that Kailey is a minor and I’m her mother and it was important to me that my child understand that behavior wouldn’t be justified for any reason. Kailey then explained she is always saying I don’t do my work. He replied, well do you? Kailey said yes sir. She told him about the painting and her painting across it angrily and telling her it was nasty. He tried to say it was no different than when you turn in a paper you have written and the teacher makes corrections on the page. I strongly disagree. He asked if she was always negative about her work and Kailey said no the last thing I turned in she said I had outdone myself. He replied we’ll see so she compliments you. As if it excused the abusive outbursts. I tried to explain it would be as if I insulted him only to try and sugar coat it with a compliment. He then demanded My daughter and myself leave his office. I then went to the superintendent Clint Riley whom had a very similar demeanor as the principal. He informed me that there are parents that love Jacobson. That may be true but I know that she has had so many complaints about being mentally and emotionally abusive, cussing and calling kids names, belittling and ridiculing them even stating she wanted to hit kids but they refuse to acknowledge this or protect our kids. Jacobson accuses Kailey of using her anxiety as an excuse to manipulate people. Kailey is not a manipulative child. She is quiet and very reserved. She says she goes to school to learn not to socialize. She is very respectful and follows rules. She is an honor student and has NEVER had a disciplinary issue ever. She has been at FWAFA since third grade and is now in eleventh. I after trying to reach out to counselors many times over the last year, the nurse, the principal, the executive director and even going to the school board where they refused to allow me to address them, have realized they are not going to protect Kailey from this woman and he actions are escalating. After the two class periods of torment and humiliation followed by her forcing Kailey to allow her to hold her face, kiss and hug her I chose to contact the the police because it’s very apparent the Administration isn’t going to protect my child or any other child from this woman’s abuse. The police said that what my daughter was describing would definitely be considered assault by contact. So we chose to move forward with filing a police report. When the detective contacted Riley about Jacobson, he lied to her and said he wasn’t aware that she had grabbed my daughters face, kissed her or forced her to hug her. Which is completely false. I sat in his office the day it happened and told him after talking to Shrekengast about it with Kailey only minutes before. He also told the detective there had never been issues with this teacher. Another false statement. I know a mom pulled her child out a year and a half ago when Riley refused to protect her 5th grader by moving him to an alternate class. Jacobson cussed at her son on more than one occasion, got in his face, called him a names and would take him in the hall alone and intimidate him making him fearful to go to school. She basically tormented him for a year and nine days before his mom finally realized she had no other choice because Riley was going to punish her child for her insisting they protect him from Jacobson. I tried to bring up to Riley that I was well aware that many other students have and continue to have problems with her being a bully. One of their most talented and promising art students dropped art just so he could get away from her mistreatment. Riley was told by me and Shrekengast by Kailey with me in his office also that Jacobson grabbed her face, kissed her and made her hug her in a controlling don’t forget I’m the boss kind of attempt to make a point. Yet, Mr Riley refuses to move my child to another class. He insisted he would “look into it at his earliest convenience” but that if she wasn’t back in that class twice a day in the meantime it would be considered Unexcused. I tried to take Kailey to school the next morning and by the time we got there she was shaking and sick to her stomach. I asked Riley to tell me how he would ensure that my daughter would not be subjected to this type of abuse at the hands of Jacobson again and he said she can feel safe at school. She clearly can’t and doesn’t. Then following his so called investigation where he met with the teacher, counselors and special programs staff but not ONE student that was in that class and witnessed this terrifying episode, he informed me he found absolutely no wrong doing on the part of Jacobson and that my claim of disability harassment by her insisting my child find a better way to deal with her anxiety possibly medicating herself in front of the entire class was completely unfounded as well. I spoke to the mother of one of the other students in this class on Monday that witnessed this terrifying display by Jacobson at the request of the detective and she informed me that her daughter came home from school that afternoon visibly shaken and told her all about what had happened and how sad it was to see her treat Kailey so cruel and she just wouldn’t stop. The kids are all afraid of her. I truly don’t know what it’s gonna take for the administration to actually be held accountable for knowingly protecting a teacher that has a history of abusive and unethical behavior and continues to get away with it. By law I was under the impression that if they knew of even one incident of abuse having that kind of affect on a child that they were legally obligated to report it and if they didn’t they could be found guilty of abuse by omission. How can this be allowed to continue and me be expected to force my terrified child with severe anxiety to have to attend two class periods a day with this woman that has so blatantly harassed and abused her in front of a host of other students? The woman that calls kids names cusses at them and gets aggressive? How is it I’m supposed to expect that my daughter should believe she is safe there and that the administration will keep her safe? She attempted to leave the room as I instructed her to do and Jacobson immediately piped up and made her very aware she better not even try it. What is wrong with that? They have failed to protect Kailey and so many other children time and time again. They refuse to address this behavior and won’t even allow me to meet with her. How can my daughter have access to her instruction without being terrified? She is a child with a disability and even if she didn’t have a disability no child should have to fear this kind of attack from a teacher. This is disability harassment, abuse of power and blatant negligence by this administration. Complaint after complaint, kids going to the counselors trying to cope with Jacobson and it goes unreported and unaddressed. Instead they ignore it and continue to subject our children to this teachers abuse covering it up for her. It’s sick. There are so many parents that have begged for help yet nothing. This is not an isolated incident and my daughter has done her best to try and deal with Jacobson being nervous and anxious daily waiting for the next episode. What is gonna have to happen before someone will protect our children? Thank you in advance for any assistance you can provide me in making school attendance safe for my daughter.

Sincerely, Mrs. Carrie Huffman

__________________________________

 

Patricia Jacobson

Patricia Jacobson

 

 

Principal, Craig Shreckengast’s response.

pack of lies

So Mr. Shreckengast are you saying that this student is lying to her parents? Seriously?

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