I bought my first computer from Radio Shack in the 1970’s. In those early years if we wanted answers from our computers we first had to teach them to accept our input of data, teach them what to do with that data and teach them how to output answers. If we did those steps just right we always got the answers we wanted.
When it came to teaching those young computers, the first rule we learned was Garbage in – Garbage out.
Consider the background of this week’s event at MacArthur High School in not so far away Irving,Texas.
Why was it that when that 14-year-old Texas freshman proudly brought his home made clock to school to show his engineering teacher, the teacher told him it was cool but he told him not to show it to anyone else?
Why was it that after the English teacher couldn’t understand what the device was and called the principal that the principal of that high school couldn’t understand the device and – instead of checking with the student’s engineering teacher – he followed his programming and called the police and suspended the boy from school?
Garbage in – Garbage out. Applies as much to education of teachers as it does to the students and computers. Our students are now facing a second or third generation of teachers who are only able to bring to their classrooms what their teachers programmed in them. Education degrees have become the propaganda tool of the left and quality course content is being replaced by scripted instructions.
But there are those teachers who do inspire youngsters to build a better clock. But not every student has access to them.
America’s schools, once among the world’s best, are now on the verge of dropping out of the top 30 systems in the world. Yet we spend as much or more than any of those 30 or so countries doing so much better that America. New York and Washington D.C. are wonderful examples of how more money is practically synonymous with poorer education.
I believe it was a New York teachers’ union leader who once said he would be glad to advocate for students as soon as they pay union dues.
As we move even closer to a total federal government takeover of all education and the permanent dumbing down of opportunities for youth we perhaps should be reminding our neighbors of the words of Time magazine’s 1938 “man of the year.” Look it up for yourself. Hitler knew if he could teach the youth what he wanted, his ideas would own the future!
What are we getting by reading federal scripts in our classrooms? Is absolutely equal delivery of instructional material going to be a better educational system? We need to take a look at why the people who spent hundreds of millions programming a web site that doesn’t work could possibly be expected to do a better job of programming young minds. We need to ask how the people who didn’t have enough sense to teach their experts to check the other side of a dirt dam before blowing it up and releasing millions of gallons of polluted water could be expected to teach our children about science. The federal mandate Common Core level learning system is flowing into our schools as fast as the national debt is rising. But surely government economists can teach our youth about business and finance. And to insure total control, the Common Core lessons are being forced onto every avenue to a high school diploma.
MacArthur High brags it is one of America’s best schools. It displays an award from U.S.News and World Report to prove it is one of the best. The Irving Independent School District proudly claims to promote STEM (science technology engineering and math) programs. But it seems obvious those skills are limited only to lower level schools.
Dig deep and find out why that Texas principal was programmed so poorly that his first response was not to have someone on the staff explain what the student had built but rather suspend him for 3 days as programmed and call the police. Did he expect the police to recognize the clock or have the sense to ask one of the teachers for an opinion? Like the English teacher and the principal, the police did exactly what they were programmed to do; arrest the student and haul him off to juvenile detention.
The letter the principal posted on line is a pathetic attempt to excuse the inexcusable. How disgraceful. But soon maybe one of our local schools can win a “Best Of” award too.
It really is true: garbage in – garbage out.