This O-cult lesson is exactly the kind of junior campaign lobbying activity that White House officials planned around the president's education speech. Alert parents and administrators called out the Department of Education's activist, Obama-centric education manuals before the event. Federal officials altered the language. Obama delivered an innocuous speech. But on cue, education radicals goaded students to engage in political activism.
White House and Hollywood moguls launched a "Get Schooled" initiative this month with Obama that urges students to lobby for higher teacher pay and to embrace the rallying cries "Know Your Rights" and "Change the System."
At the New Trier High School in Northfield, Ill., educators followed up on Obama's address with a 45-minute "extended adviser" discussion last week to explore "the significant messages inherent in his speech." Illinois writer/blogger Tom Blumer reports that "parents were not informed on a timely basis as to what was going to happen, and were given no specific instructions on how to have their child opt out of the 'discussions.'" The school's principal and assistant principal sent out suggestive questions focused on Dear Leader's Do Something missives:
-- Why do you think President Obama listed the responsibilities of teachers, parents and the government before discussing your responsibility for your education?
-- What are you "good at," and what do you have "to offer" your family, friends and community?
-- In the speech, President Obama spoke of some of the steps of Effective Effort. Identify them, using direct quotations from the text to support your assertions.
-- Respond to President Obama's final questions for you: "What's your contribution going to be? …"
In addition to radical White House Teaching Fellows like Chicago high-school educator Xian Barrett (an outspoken charter school foe who founded a "Social Justice Club" and bussed students to protest) and Michelle Bissonnette, a Los Altos, Calif., teacher who is "focused on developing my leadership as a more culturally and racially conscious educator," the White House has embraced controversial homosexual rights advocate Kevin Jennings as "Safe Schools czar." Jennings founded the controversial GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network), which aggressively pushes sexually explicit, age-inappropriate books and lesson plans on alternative lifestyles.
Lost in all the chanting for change is the core commitment to impart actual knowledge. For progressives in the Age of Obama, setting high academic standards is secondary to the self-improvement of the "whole child" and "service" to the cause of social justice.
Out: readin', writin' and 'rithmetic. In: rappin', revolution and radicalism. Mmm, mmm, mmm.