Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Early Common Core

Circa 1946 & 1979

Attention Parents and Teachers! Common Core is not new! It is decades and decades old! The following entries from my book the deliberate dumbing down of america, should have you shaking your collective heads!

Common Core/Outcomes-Based Ed Restructuring dates back to 1946!!  So do Community-Centered Schools, i.e., Community Education,... or perhaps it should more appropriately be called Chinese Communist Re-education?

The April 11, 1973 issue of The Montgomery County (Maryland) Advertiser carried a very interesting article which traces the history of the deliberate dumbing down and the call for lifelong education under the umbrella of the unelected school superintendent/council date back to 1946 at least! The following documentation is scanned material found at American Deception.com

On page 37-38 of the deliberate dumbing down of america is an entry titled "COMMUNITY-CENTERED SCHOOLS: THE BLUEPRINT FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY SCHOOLS." The following in brief is the Educational Program for Montgomery County Schools as proposed by Dr. Nicholaus L. Englehardt and Associates, Consultants, and written by Dr. Walter D . Cocking. New York City, April 1, 1946." In the Letter of Transmittal, they asked that the program "should be put into operation gradually."

Montgomery County Advertiser, April 11, 1973
 The introduction to this BLUEPRINT stated that Montgomery County

"is unique among the 3000 counties in the 48 states because of its proximity to the nation's capital and in the fact that more of its residents in the future will be government officials - who carry on their individual civic duties and responsibilities in the State of Maryland. World movements and policies will be chartered in Washington, D.C. Certain movements and developments can be anticipated. Many outside factors now largely, if not totally unimportant will influence the life and development of the people in the County. Montgomery County is located in the shadow of what is destined to become - the unofficial capital of the world. Here will be formulated proposals affecting all mankind. The job is to find the program of education which is really needed and to have the will and ability to put it into operation."

The study sets forth the major outlines of the educational program which will meet the needs of children, youth and adults and demonstrates the character of an educational program which can affect and shape living in all its manifold aspects....
If the school as an agency of society is to justify itself for the period ahead of us, it must be accepted that its fundamental function is to serve the people of the entire community, the very young children, the children of middle years, early adolescent youth, older youth, and the adults as well. It must find a way to serve individuals, the family group, and the entire community. Then, AND ONLY THEN, can it be said that the school is serving the entire community, and hence achieving its function.

Was anyone listening?  Not only did parents and teachers detest the Outcomes/Competency-Based Restructuring and early versions of Common Core, so did John H. Sandberg, director of teacher education for Carnegie-Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Sandberg's article entitled "K-12 Competency Education Comes to Pennsylvania" was published in the October 1979 issue of Phi Delta Kappan. Excerpts from the article follow:
It is too late to stop Project ’81, which will run its course and probably will soon be
forgotten, but one may hope that other states will think hard before embarking on similar projects.... While it is possible that I misunderstood the meaning or intent of this “major goal” [“gain the skills and knowledge they will need as adults”], it strikes me as being unattainable on its face.... I would argue that we cannot “see that students acquire the competencies they need to be successful in the adult world” because we don’t know what they are now much less what they will be ten years from now.... Exchanging courses, credits, and Carnegie Units for “newly defined competencies” will not eliminate this fundamental problem....
Finally, in the case of students who are known to be college bound and are locked into
a curriculum that is dictated primarily by college requirements (not life-role expectancies), what is going to give? Will physics give way to lawn mower repair? Chemistry to cooking? Trigonometry to tile setting? Will it really make any difference for these students what the state board requires for graduation as long as Harvard wants math through calculus and two years of a foreign language?... I would be happy to settle for a short list of competencies if I thought we could handle them: Teach children how to read, to write, to do arithmetic, to draw, make music, and to get along with each other.
We are not doing these few things for enough kids now, so perhaps this is what we should be working on instead of making new lists of things we won’t know how to do.... I applaud the emphasis that Project ’81 gives to making better use of educational resources in the community. But as a Blueprint for structuring public education and for measuring its products, the competency-based approach embodied in Project ’81 strikes me as totally ridiculous. A true skeptic might argue that Project ’81 may be safely ignored on the ground that the Pennsylvania Department of Education is incompetent to chew, much less swallow, what it has attempted to bite off. Like other grandiose efforts to reform the schools, the project may generate some wind and heat and several billion pieces of paper and then go away, leaving all but the 12 pilot school districts untouched.
Nevertheless, the Pennsylvania Department of Education has already demonstrated, with competency-based teacher education, its competence to effect change—or at least the illusion of change—on a large scale. Project ’81 is a much more extensive undertaking whose  potential for mischief is incalculably greater. The mischief can occur. The mischief can occur if Pennsylvanians do not take a long, hard look at where Project ’81 is taking them. (page 154 DDD)