Education

Confucius Institutes and our high schools [UPDATED]

Featured image I wrote here about the Confucius Institutes, a mechanism through which the Chinese government fights its ideological battle on American campuses. The Institutes offer Chinese language and culture courses at more than 100 American colleges and universities, while avoiding mention of human rights abuses, portraying Taiwan and Tibet as undisputed territories of China, and doing their best to make sure American students know nothing more of China than the regime’s »

Clueless in Milwaukee

Featured image Earlier this month, Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) entered into an agreement with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights to resolve a complaint that it discriminated against black students in suspensions and other disciplinary actions. The agreement requires MPS, among other things, to improve its monitoring and data collection, better train staff, update its disciplinary policies, and develop early identification and intervention strategies for students at risk for »

Memo to Betsy DeVos: What You’re Up Against

Featured image In the mission of offering continuing political education here at Power Line University, herewith another timeless scene from Yes, Prime Minister on how the bureaucrats regard the idea of school choice, with a side of Obamacare thrown in for good measure. Betsy DeVos might want to screen this scene:   »

Teachers’ Unions: Enemy of Men and Minorities

Featured image The American Economic Association just wrapped up its annual meeting in Philadelphia, and one of the panels was devoted to the issue of the economic effects of teachers’ unions. Get a load of the abstract from this paper from two Cornell University economists presented at the panel: The Long-run Effects of Teacher Collective Bargaining Michael Lovenheim, Alexander Willen, Cornell University Abstract Teacher collective bargaining is a highly debated feature of »

AP History repeats itself

Featured image Last year, I wrote about the College Board’s plan to mandate a left-wing framework for the teaching of AP European History, a college-level course for American high school students and the last course in European history that many of them take. I relied on a devastating critique of the AP European History exam (APEH) issued by the National Association of Scholars (NAS) and written by David Randall. Dr. Randall’s key »

The Millennial Job Interview

Featured image People often ask how the tender, safe-spaced, and cosseted “millennials” are going to fare in the real world. Fortunately we don’t have to wonder any longer: Daniel Brea of LA Reel House has put together this short video of how a job interview with the typical millennial might go. Looks accurate to me! »

The Shame of America’s Public High Schools

Featured image I wrote here, here, here (a video of a speech by me), here and here about the sad decline of the Edina, Minnesota public schools into hard-core leftism. Edina’s school district was once among the nation’s most respected, but its administrators have been content to see the district slide down to second or third tier status, because their sole priority is “racial equity,” which is code for a long list »

Study claims high school students are stressed by Trump

Featured image Student anxiety and hostility at public high schools have worsened since Donald Trump became president, according to a study. More than half of the 1,535 teachers who responded to a survey claimed to see more students than ever with “high levels of stress and anxiety” between January and May of this year. The study was conducted by UCLA’s director of the Institute for Democracy, Education, and Access. The title of »

The war on standards: Illiterate teachers edition

Featured image I missed this story at the time, but earlier this year the New York Times reported that the New York Board of Regents eliminated a requirement that aspiring teachers in the state pass a literacy test to become certified. The Board eliminated the requirement because Black and Hispanic candidates for teaching jobs passed the literacy test at significantly lower rates than white candidates. In lieu of passing the literary test, »

Jerry Brown Sides with Betsy DeVos on Title IX

Featured image Today Governor Jerry Brown vetoed a bill from the California state legislature that would have codified the previous Title IX “guidance” about sexual assault and harassment on college campuses. Referencing a previously enacted California law imposing an “affirmative consent” standard for hookups (“Yes means yes,” along with a “preponderance of evidence” standard for making judgments), Brown today says this: Since this law was enacted, however, thoughtful legal minds have increasingly questioned »

Countering Kersten [updated]

Featured image In 1747 Samuel Johnson announced the plan to write what became his Dictionary of the English Language. Johnson had hoped to get the job done in three years. His friend Richard Adams questioned his ability to complete such a massive undertaking in such a short time. It had taken the 40 members of the French Academy 40 years to compile their Dictionary, Adams reminded him. Boswell reported Johnson’s famous response: »

How Leftist Indoctrination Ruins a School System

Featured image I wrote here about left-wing indoctrination in the Edina, Minnesota public schools. As a local story, it has been explosive. As a national story, it is a warning to normal parents and students everywhere. Leftism in the Edina schools is the subject of the cover story in the current issue of Thinking Minnesota. I highly recommend the article, written by veteran Twin Cities columnist Kathy Kersten. The Edina controversy actually »

How Leftism Can Ruin a Once-Proud School District

Featured image Edina is one of the Twin Cities’ wealthiest suburbs. For decades, its public schools have been viewed as among the nation’s finest. But no longer: a leftist political agenda now dominates the Edina school system, and quality of instruction has slipped badly. Edina is not alone. What has happened there is going on in public schools across the country. Edina’s experience should be a warning to all of us. Kathy »

What Do Fanny Hill and King Lear Have In Common? [with comment by Paul]

Featured image Fanny Hill was the first pornographic novel written in English. It was authored by John Cleland (who, as far as I know, never wrote anything else) and published in 1748. Among other things, Fanny Hill is famous for the fact that it doesn’t contain any bad words. Pornographers were a lot more inventive in those days. Nevertheless, it was, in former centuries, one of the most frequently banned books. I »

Thomas Jefferson: Useful again, for a few days

Featured image Charlottesville, scene of a hate rally and of awful violence this weekend, was the home town of Thomas Jefferson. Virginia’s liberal governor Terry McAuliffe was among those who invoked Jefferson when condemning the alt-right. McAuliffe said: Go home. You are not wanted in this great commonwealth. Shame on you. You pretend that you are patriots, but you are anything but a patriot. You want to talk about patriots, talk about »

Left-wing Indoctrination in the Schools: It’s Worse Than You Think

Featured image Edina High School in suburban Minneapolis was long regarded as one of the country’s top secondary schools. In recent years, its national ratings and its local reputation have slipped, perhaps in part because teachers are spending time promoting a left-wing agenda and bullying conservative students rather than teaching the subjects they are paid to teach. Following last November’s election, 80 Edina High School teachers–which must represent pretty much the entire »

Life lessons from the chief

Featured image Courtesy of an appreciative account by Washington Post Supreme Court reporter Robert Barnes, Hugh Hewitt tipped his listeners this morning to Chief Justice John Roberts’s ninth-grade commencement address early last month at the Cardigan Mountain School. Cardigan Mountain is an elite boarding school for boys in grades six through nine in Caanan, New Hampshire. Barnes observes: “Sitting up front under a large white tent as John Glover Roberts Jr. took »