Education shorts

by David Safier

Too much news. Can't cover it all. So here are a few education quickies.

  • I could hardly have been more surprised when I read that Gov. Brewer vetoed the increase in tuition tax credits from $500 to $750 for an individual. She said it would throw the budget out of whack. No, guv, you don't get my thanks (like you expected it!) for doing something sane, and you don't become a moderate by being slightly less insanely right wing than the rest of your party. That said, Brewer did the right thing.
  • On the other hand, here's another education bill that flew in under my radar, SB 1453, waiting for Brewer's signature. It lets parents take their kids out of classes if they feel the content is violent, profane or vulgar. I'll return to this one at a later date, after I see how broadly it's written. It sounds like it will be a negative to education, and very disruptive. My tentative working title for the bill: the "Holocaust deniers can skip class that day" bill. But I want to read the bill before I write anything more.

0 responses to “Education shorts

  1. not good if the parents are ignoramuses. what’s this “inflicted” thing? Hate education much? Horror indeed.

  2. What a horror! Allowing parents to decide what education should be inflicted upon their children will certainly lead to what Dr. Peter Venkman predicted “dogs and cats living together… mass hysteria! “

  3. I believe the more likely scenario is that the Evolution deniers are behind this bill. This has Christian Right written all over it; look at the Center for Arizona Policy: http://www.azpolicy.org/legislative-action-center

    I share your worry about Holocaust deniers too. Re-writing the science books to teach Creationism does not worry me as much as cutting out Thomas Jefferson from the history books. (The fact that he believed in the separation of church and state makes him a bad guy for the Christian Right). In science, facts are visible and tangible, and for the deniers, the physical facts of science are just really, really hard to overcome. But history is more conceptual, and the important themes are ideas, so it is much easier to re-write and change ideas and thus easier to create new conceptual frameworks for students. That’s a bigger problem and a bigger worry.

    Darwin’s ideas are self-evident every time you watch a lion chase down a gazelle – it’s survival of the fittest. You can believe in some preacher’s version of the Bible, but life will still go on, scientists will still function and still produce, and life will still be. But if or when you can change the whole conceptual framework of our history and our civilization, change the foundational ideas of people, then that’s when danger is front and center – that’s when people like the Holocaust deniers can actually get traction and influence our future.