01 October 2013

The Education Establishment - Epic Fail

According to the 2010 National Assessment of Educational Progress, however, only 12 percent of high school seniors were proficient in history. That means most college students lack the knowledge even to begin developing the ”nuanced and comprehensive view of the past and the dynamics of historical change” with which Grossman and Carey credit social history. The New York Times reported that only 2 percent of high school seniors could identify the issue involved in Brown v. Board of Education. By the way, the question included a quote from the decision. (Emphasis mine.)

Just more evidence history teachers are failing in their most important responsibility. What an unmitigated disaster. And they want to tell the masses how to analyze and interpret history? Right. 

Much of this is pushing the continuing growth and phenomenal success of homeschooling, long distance learning and experience oriented learning. We really don't need the establishment, at least not to the extent they want the hoi polloi to believe. And that's a good thing.


ropelight said...

RGW, FYI, check your first link. The site is shut down over failure of Congress to agree on a CR that includes ObamaCare.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Ha - that's funny!! Oh well, the NYT link provides the essential information.

ropelight said...

Looks like 2 problems: history teachers are myopically focused on racial issues, social class distinctions, and gender relationships to the near exclusion of actual historical events and the circumstances which preceded them; and federal focus on standardized tests has shifted teacher time to an unhealthy over concentration on reading and math and away from other necessary subjects.

Plus, of course, for over 4 decades college history departments have ruthlessly excluded candidates for tenure who failed to make obeisance to Marxism's Spiritus Mundi.

And, public school teachers aren't drawn from the most accomplished ranks of high or even mid-level college graduates. Some are pretty good, some are very good, but top flight college graduates, even ones with BAs in history, usually find more lucrative employment, at least till Democrats drove the economy into a ditch and Barack Obama stimulated enough government spending to drown future generations in unconscionable debt.

Maybe history teachers should tell their students about the unpleasant consequences of national bankruptcy.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Yes, as I like to point out, it's not history, its about social engineering.

Jess Michaelangelo said...

I'm not usually one to weigh in here, I'm more of a reader than a commenter, but the fact that only 12% of high school seniors were proficient in history honestly doesn't surprise me. Coming from a public school background in a considerably good school district, I can say that from 3rd grade to 9th grade, the only history we ever learned was from Plymouth Rock UP TO the Civil War. If we were lucky, we made it to Reconstruction. It wasn't until 10th grade that I had a class covering history after the Civil War to the present day, which is a shame. I've always been a Civil War history nut, but I would be lying if I said I felt like I had a thorough knowledge of U.S. history other than that. Better yet, after 10th grade, we had the option of opting out of history courses altogether, but if we wanted to still take any history, the only thing available was European history. I have a personal interest in history, but as a whole, most high school kids could care less about it, which is a shame given the state of our nation these days. And my school is just one example, I can only imagine what some of these schools consider an adequate history education.

Sorry if this is rambling, I just had to throw my two cents in!

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Thanks for reading Jess and for taking the time to comment. Your experience is helpful. I think a lot of the issue is the WAY history is presented. If its presented with dry dates and events to memorize - its boring as can be. If its presented as an opportunity to offer up our past as the culmination of all human evil, folks either lose interest or sour on their country. I think history should be taught in a way that inspires, without ignoring our faults.

And, yes, I believe that is possible. Thanks again for taking the time to share your thoughts.