Anti-war teacher quits her job rather than her principles - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 22 Old 09-25-2003, 02:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#2 of 22 Old 09-26-2003, 08:27 PM
 
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Totally sick, but unfortunately not the least bit surprising.
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#3 of 22 Old 09-26-2003, 08:49 PM
 
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So "Peace" is propaganda? That is so very sad.
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#4 of 22 Old 09-26-2003, 09:05 PM
 
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Originally posted by isleta
So "Peace" is propaganda? That is so very sad.
Exactly, please to tell how peace is a propaganda??
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#5 of 22 Old 09-26-2003, 09:45 PM
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Originally posted by Nursing Mother



She brought politics into her music to young children. As much WRONG as bringing in your personal RELIGION!!

I completely disagree. (Speaking as a teacher and a parent.) Teachers bring values to the classroom. (People take their values everywhere.) I would not want a robotic, unfeeling, valueless teacher for my children.

If I disagree with what is being taught, I can talk to the teacher, the principal, put my kid somewhere else, etc. But that doesn't necessarily mean that the teacher should be censored.

And what about saying the pledge every day? (You know, "one nation, under god.....") Isn't that politics AND religion, right there?
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#6 of 22 Old 09-27-2003, 02:44 AM
 
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quote:
"I guess it was easier to be a teacher way way back when the majority of people tended to agree with one another politically and religiously."


I wonder when this period of political and religious agreement exisited - if it ever did to a great extent or for a long period of time - in America.

In particular I am thinking of the African-American population of the South, the Native American populations across the country, and the Latinos in the Southwest --- and their relationships with institutional public education, --- elementary, secondary and university.

But I think this is going off topic.

There is much to discuss here - do teachers really "impose" their values? Is it possible or desirable to be entirely apolitical or neutral as a teacher - whether one teaches art, health, humanities or mathemetics?

I know that as an English teacher my values are always present in my teaching from the way I physically set up my classroom to the texts I choose to teach and decline to teach. How could it be otherwise?

Just a few thoughts.

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#7 of 22 Old 09-27-2003, 03:05 AM
 
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I think that teachers are people and are going to be biased period. Even if you show both sides of an argument or political views, your feelings and moral beliefs are going to show. I also feel that children in grade school can handle this subject and should learn social justice from an early age. How else are they going to start to have empathy and understanding of others?

I do not think she did anything wrong. Children all over the world have wanted to stop wars and maybe it was a positive move by her because it made the children who felt this way put at ease that they are not the only ones who want peace. I live in an area where at the schools I am at have God Bless America stickers and proud to be American, etc and flag stickers-bumperstickers on campus. It is very intimidating when you feel the complete opposite of what your government is doing. Obviously all children are not going to understand all the details of a war, but they do have an idea and feelings toward it. There are many teaching curriculums that address war and conflict resolution, even for young children.

Also, I am assuming these children have a family that has taught their values to their children and should be available to their kids to discuss these matters. There is a world out there.... And we all experience it. I think that other matters at a school would hold more importance, like how well teachers care about students and how they are treated.

Just another view on the subject.
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#8 of 22 Old 09-29-2003, 09:40 AM
 
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BUt what happens when values contradict? The personal values of a child's family vrs. the value of a particular teacher?
Wow..you learn something new everyday! I never thought PEACE was not a shared value...especially in such a God-lovin' and God--fearin' country!
Blech.

Ilaria mamma to Owen, Caroline & Patrick .... loving life as expats in Asia intactlact.gifnovaxnocirc.gifuc.jpgnamaste.gif
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#9 of 22 Old 09-30-2003, 08:48 AM
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guess it was easier to be a teacher way way back when the majority of people tended to agree with one another politically and religiously
NM, what the heck are you talking about?? This is not the first time I have seen this from you.

I've been meaning to start a thread entitled "Are Republicans Just a Bunch of Nostalgics with a Distorted View of Human History?"

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#10 of 22 Old 09-30-2003, 02:05 PM
 
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Ah, surely the era referenced to is the Period of Great Consensus Amongst All Everywhere.

Sorry. A little sarcasm from the overworked teacher/mama.

Education isn't about reinforcing one's own experience - though that might happen. It's essentially about learning what is unknown. And yes, that sometimes challenges what one has experineced or known. Critical thought.

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#11 of 22 Old 09-30-2003, 02:50 PM
 
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She brought politics into her music to young children. As much WRONG as bringing in your personal RELIGION!!
Do you consider it wrong when teachers bring their patriotic values into the classroom? Seems to be pretty status quo, but still just as unrelated to the 3 r's.
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#12 of 22 Old 09-30-2003, 09:27 PM
 
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Again, I think it's important to point out (and a few historians on education in America do so) that - can I quote myself? - this concept of a some kind of ideal time when all agreed on common values and those values were dispensed without objection or rejection in the public classroom is a nice fairytale:

quote:
I wonder when this period of political and religious agreement exisited - if it ever did to a great extent or for a long period of time - in America.
In particular I am thinking of the African-American population of the South, the Native American populations across the country, and the Latinos in the Southwest --- and their relationships with institutional public education, --- elementary, secondary and university.

There is no way one could examine the curriculum and the texts used in the American education system "earlier in the last century or two" and believe that the values informing them (e.g., the casual and pervasive racism, classism and sexism) were welcomed by all.

I leave segregation out of it for simplicity's sake.

Time to feed the baby.




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#13 of 22 Old 09-30-2003, 09:44 PM
 
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As America grew more diverse, that diversity was reflected in its education system. Prayer and Bible study, once "tolerated" in the curriculum, were no longer appropriate in such a diverse society.

The education system changed as we changed - though actually "we" changed first - it took longer for the system to catch up. We have always been a diverse country - take a look at the folks who signed the papers founding the city of Los Angeles.

A parallel: Way back, German was once a primary language used in the schools in New York as that was the dominant language in the community. That, of course, changed as the community changed.


I am, of course, leaving separation of church and state out of this for simplicity's sake.


Back to the baby.


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#14 of 22 Old 10-01-2003, 07:31 PM
 
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Me, here just talking to myself some more.

quote:
"guess it was easier to be a teacher way way back when the majority of people tended to agree with one another politically and religiously"

The more I think about this the more it reminds me of the Edenic myth...



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#15 of 22 Old 10-01-2003, 08:03 PM
 
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But there was a time in America (most likely during the victorian years 1830-80's or so) where most where Christian or claimed to be Christian thus allowing unity of teaching, politics, etc in the schools without all the fuss people make of it today.
What a shame we let in all of that non-Christian riff-raff. We really do need to purge the unbelievers from our society, so that we can be good and pure again.
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#16 of 22 Old 10-01-2003, 08:15 PM
 
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Uh, somebody say that HB?
Uh, you implied it. Harking back to the mythical good ole days, when everyone was Christian, and there were no problems. It seems that things didn't start going downhill until Christianity began to be diluted by immigration of the heretics.
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#17 of 22 Old 10-01-2003, 09:24 PM
 
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I don't think I'm "philosophying" as much as stating facts - except, of course, for the Edenic myth musing.

[QUOTE]Originally posted by Nursing Mother
But there was a time in America (most likely during the victorian years 1830-80's or so) where most where Christian or claimed to be Christian thus allowing unity of teaching, politics, etc in the schools without all the fuss people make of it today...


I think the historical record suggests that this assertion is, at best, incomplete, if not untrue.

Again, to quote myself, and to take up Mr. Briss' point, what about those non-white, non-Christian folks? What about the Native American children who were taken from their parents and taught their language, their culture, their religion was primitive? To take your example, Harvard -- sure, they said their prayers and then got up from their knees and continued to exclude women and ethnic and religious minorities.

Like HB said, "the mythical good ole days."

For white Christians they were real but for the rest of us - and we were here too - they weren't so "good."

And "accomodation" isn't enough.

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#18 of 22 Old 10-01-2003, 09:37 PM
 
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Oh I completely agree with HB and burritomama. I don't think anyone is putting words in your mouth NM.

I for one certainly don't want to go back to victorian times when woman had little rights and anyone not a white heterosexual Christian male was a second class citizen. To quote Archie Bunker " Those were the Days" :
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#19 of 22 Old 10-01-2003, 09:58 PM
 
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Also (as a way of steering this back toward the OP though I think this digression is relevant) I just want to say that I think today's public education teachers do rise to the challenge of our diverse society - and do remarkable work under often the worst conditions.

Of course there are exceptions to this -

BUT when you look at the past and its systemic exclusion of non-white, non-Christian, non-straight folk and women AND its embrace of questionable and punitive (often manifested in corporal punishment) pedogogical tactics - well, the public education system and the educators within it have made real progress.

As far as the role of religion in public eductaion: well, students do learn of religion in history and social studies and yes, in some high schools and colleges, religious studies. If I wanted to teach religion I would have gone into the parochial school system as did my cousins.

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#20 of 22 Old 10-02-2003, 02:53 AM
 
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I think Arduinna and the others, me included, we're picking up on your obvious admiring, wishful tone - that's all.

Me, I find it difficult to admire the Victorian period for all the reasons stated and more - especially the offcial consensus regarding education at that time.



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#21 of 22 Old 10-03-2003, 11:24 PM
 
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Just wanted to bump this thread to see if there was any more life left in it...

Perhaps it's time for this topic to go to
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#22 of 22 Old 10-04-2003, 04:53 PM
 
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1. Something I find interesting--the PI ran a column about this incident without running a news article about it. That's unsual. I wonder why. If people were complaining about this teacher, were they not willing to be interviewed? Even in a google search I couldn't find a NEWS article on this. I'd like to hear more of her songs and/or the other side of this story.

2. There WAS a time in history where generally Christian values were taught in schools, (I remember as part of a documentary listening to two older Jewish men talk about their experiences with Christian influences in public school. They said they didn't see it as wrong at the time, because it didn't occur to them to question that norm. But they knew they were being raised differently at home.)

That doesn't mean it was better then. There was a time before I realized my husband was allergic to SOY and ds and I were allergic to MILK that I could saute our mushrooms in one pan instead of two. Didn't mean we were BETTER off then, but things sure as hell were EASIER.

3. No matter how I would love my son to go to a (private) school who had teachers like this who taught values like this, I also can't help but think of the child who's mom or dad is in Iraq, and clinging desperately to the message the rest of the family is giving, that it is a good and important thing his parent is doing--because if it isn't, why did they leave? What is that child thinking as this song is being sung?

4. I was helping out in Kindergarten ds's classroom yesterday, and she played a tape for the kids to follow along with, that was obviously a favorite, that was a adaptation of "Going on a Lion (or Bear) Hunt" done with a Transalvanian accent called "Looking for Dracula". One boy raised his hand and said his parents didn't want him listening to this song. The teacher said, "Pretend it's a bear". ---Huh?

How would I feel as that child? As that child's parent? How would I feel (as a pagan) if it were looking for some big bad ugly & scary witch?

She stressed at the end though, that the song was just about someone pretending to be Dracula, that there's really no such thing. (Great, but I'm thinking, I can't wait until she tells them there's no such thing as magic/witches or they study that old, made-up "mythology".) I don't suppose her position's an easy one...

5. I know I've caught teachers in a bind before. In a parent/child speech therapy class, my partial nudity by breastfeeding my student/son's little brother in class offended one of the parents there. His asking me to do it in the hallway offended me.

(edited for typo)
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