I just reviewed the bio of each member of the Texas State Board of Education. The recent decisions they made about the curriculum (click here) are no surprise when you learn that of the 15-member board, only 6 have any hands-on teaching experience within the community they profess to serve. Why on earth is it a logical decision to ask non-educators to make decisions about school curriculum? Clearly, the key decision makers in Texas must have been educated, well, in Texas. (Please note the punctuation lest my comment could easily be misread as being “educated well in Texas” which the Texas SBOE has just turned into an oxymoron)
Now having gotten that question off my chest, I gotta look at the process and call it appropriate. I’m not being critical of the process at all. Texas has exercised it’s just right under the Constitution to make this decision…and the Constitution, my friends, is no specific lover of children. So, we as a country just need to prepare ourselves for a coupla generations of ignorant ass poop-flingers from Texas. Only this time, let’s not make ’em President.
To be fair to the makeshift educators, I’ve met some of these kids. I know what you’re up against cuz I gotta say…these kids comin’ up today, well, let’s just either some of them have extra chromosomes or methinks we’ve room for improvement in our education system. It’s not their fault, it’s ours. We haven’t taught them the basics – how it’s harder to swallow your food before you chew it (biology,) how just because a glass door is clear doesn’t mean we don’t have to open it first before running through it (physics,) how you shouldn’t drink something just because it smells good even if Daddy lets the car drink it (Daddy? what’s that? anywho…) how tellin’ your Aunt Kym to shut up will get you dropped like a bad habit (survival) Without this basic knowledge, I agree with the Texas SBOE, we can’t hardly ask these babies to use any critical thinking skills during the hours of 9:00a and 3:00pm. (Now, before you get mad at me for calling the babies out, look over at your kids…is one of ’em doin’ something dumb right now? Tasting the soap because it looks creamy, perhaps? I know, baby…I’m on YOUR side)
Now that I’ve said that, let me also say – I think both sides of this equation suck. The Texas SBOE is not changing a system that’s in fine working order. The current curricula seems to be leaning a little far to the left. That’s the problem with leaning too far in any direction, you galvanize the other side and the pendulum will eventually swing far in the opposite direction. I’m no educator so I don’t know…but can’t we just present the children with all of the knowledge and let them make age-appropriate decisions for themselves? Can we just teach them that almost everything they encounter in life will come with multiple perspectives and that their job is to look at all sides and follow their conscience? Must we force feed them our own narrow-minded views and myopia? Are we so afraid of intelligent children that we’d rather feed them a steady diet of video games, overly processed foods and already chewed information?
I don’t know much. And I ain’t got no kids. But I do know that ignorance is a hell of a legacy. If you think we got it bad now, come back and visit fifty years from now after we’ve sanitized our new generation of leaders of the ability to think and innovate and evolve. This is the foundation of America, a country founded by thinkers and believers. Oh! And slaves. Why do we keep forgetting the slaves?