Do We Want the Military Involved in Common Core?

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The Unit­ed States mil­i­tary has been involved in U.S. edu­ca­tion for many years. In fact, much of the Indi­vid­u­al­ized Edu­ca­tion research (Skin­ner­ian Mas­tery Learning/Direct Instruction/OBE/Effective Schools) used by the U.S. Dept. of Edu­ca­tion in the 1980s came from the U.S. Depart­ment of Defense (espe­cial­ly the U.S. Navy) in the 1950s and 1960s.

Here is some his­to­ry of U.S. mil­i­tary involve­ment in our pub­lic schools:

(1) See the Broad Foun­da­tion, which has huge­ly fund­ed edu­ca­tion reform ini­tia­tives, in a 2009 press release HERE, and notice the title and the purpose:Broad military

This year’s class also includes the high­est num­ber in the academy’s eight-year his­to­ry of high-rank­ing mil­i­tary gen­er­als who want to make a dif­fer­ence in the field of pub­lic edu­ca­tion. For exam­ple, the class includes a gen­er­al who over­saw world­wide air­lift, logis­tics and com­mu­ni­ca­tions sup­port for the pres­i­dent, vice pres­i­dent and oth­er senior U.S. lead­ers and a brigadier gen­er­al who served as deputy com­mand­ing gen­er­al of the 10th Moun­tain Divi­sion and the Joint Task Force of 25,000 U.S. mil­i­tary mem­bers in Afghanistan.

(2) Har­vard Pro­fes­sor Antho­ny Oet­tinger of the Coun­cil on For­eign Rela­tions deliv­ered a speech in 1982 titled “Reg­u­lat­ed Com­pe­ti­tion in the Unit­ed States” in which he den­i­grat­ed lit­er­a­cy as obso­lete, “a prod­uct of nine­teenth cen­tu­ry eco­nom­ics and tech­nol­o­gy,” and stat­ed it was more impor­tant for peo­ple to “acquire the skills nec­es­sary to solve their prob­lems.” Here is the exam­ple he used:

A Con­gress­man who vis­it­ed one of my class­es recent­ly said, “We have such low-grade sol­diers in the U.S. that we have to train them with com­ic books.” And an army cap­tain in my class shot back: “What’s wrong with com­ic books? My peo­ple func­tion.” [bold added, ital­ics in orig­i­nal, excerpt­ed from page 183 of my book]

Lt. Gen Covault

Lt. Gen Covault

(3) See this arti­cle: “Lt. Gen­er­al Mar­vin Cov­ault Defends Com­mon Core: “The Mil­i­tary Has a Vest­ed Inter­est in This”. We wrote about this event on the blog in a post titled Tragedy in the Mak­ing.

By imple­ment­ing tougher stan­dards that are uni­form across the coun­try, Cov­ault said Com­mon Core would help ensure bet­ter human cap­i­tal [i.e., your child’s assessed eco­nom­ic val­ue] for America’s armed forces.”

(4) JAMES BOND-TYPE OPERATIONS IN JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI! Accord­ing to a very reli­able source, Four-Star Gen­er­als were involved in the pro­mo­tion of the Jack­son, Mis­sis­sip­pi Skinnerian/Mastery Learn­ing Effec­tive School research exper­i­ments in the late 1970s and ear­ly 1980s. These 4‑star gen­er­als were observed, over quite a peri­od of time, get­ting in and out of black chauf­feured lim­ou­sines in front of a huge ware­house-type build­ing in Jack­son, deliv­er­ing and pick­ing up huge box­es, for what pur­pose, at that par­tic­u­lar time, seemed quite a mystery.

James BondThe Effec­tive School Report, a rel­a­tive­ly unknown pro­fes­sion­al edu­ca­tion jour­nal cov­er­ing the Skin­ner­ian Mas­tery Learning/Direct Instruc­tion move­ment world­wide, was orig­i­nal­ly writ­ten and pub­lished in the base­ment of Robert Forten­ber­ry, the Super­in­ten­dent of Schools in Jack­son, Mis­sis­sip­pi. Forten­ber­ry shipped the month­ly reports to a Grand Cen­tral Sta­tion P.O. Box in New York City where it was mailed all over the world. To under­stand the earth­shak­ing sig­nif­i­cance of this fact, please read all of The Effec­tive School Report entries in my book, the delib­er­ate dumb­ing down of amer­i­ca (see Index). Pres­i­dent Rea­gan’s Sec­re­tary of Edu­ca­tion, T.H. Bell, sub­se­quent­ly served on the Board of Direc­tors of Kel­wynn, Inc., the Effec­tive Schools train­ing com­pa­ny which pub­lished the above-ref­er­enced The Effec­tive School Report. (This is reports in my book Back to Basics Reform or OBE…Skinnerian Inter­na­tion­al Curicu­lum, page 8, avail­able HERE as a free download.)

Common Core lineageIf one has­n’t fig­ured it out by now, “effec­tive school research” is the term used for Skin­ner­ian Mas­tery Learning/Direct Instruc­tion, or Outcomes/Performance/Results based education.

(5) SKINNERIAN EXPERIMENTATION ON MINORITIES. Back in 1977 The Dis­trict of Columbi­a’s Asso­ciate Super­in­ten­dent of Schools, Guines, told us all about this switch from what you know in your head (aca­d­e­mics) to “what you can do/perform,” rec­om­mend­ed by the U.S. mil­i­tary, and nec­es­sary for work­force train­ing as well. Here is what we post­ed on the blog ear­li­er relat­ed to this issue.

Are our chil­dren pigeons? Here is what Guines said, which was report­ed in an ear­li­er post on this blog titled “Bomb­ing Pigeons Used As Mod­el for Train­ing Chil­dren!”:

If you can train a pigeon to fly up there and press a but­ton and set off a bomb… why can’t you teach human beings to behave in an effec­tive and ratio­nal way? We know that we can mod­i­fy human behav­ior. We’re not scared of that. This is the biggest thing that’s hap­pen­ing in edu­ca­tion today.”

(6) So, ought we to be sur­prised by the fol­low­ing video in which anoth­er Gen­er­al, this time Maj. Gen­er­al James “Spi­der” Marks, sup­ports COMMON CORE, the new label for Skin­ner­ian Out­comes Based Edu­ca­tion? Marks is sim­ply repeat­ing the words of Gen­er­al Cov­ault (above) but wise­ly not refer­ring to our chil­dren as human cap­i­tal. Of course, we sus­pect that Gen­er­al Marks did not vol­un­teer to make this Col­lab­o­ra­tive for Stu­dent Suc­cess video, but that he was urged (ordered?) to do so by the same Coun­cil on For­eign Rela­tions, the cor­po­ra­tions and/or the neo­con­ser­v­a­tive Trot­skyites who are all push­ing the Com­mon Core agen­da as well as the tax-fund­ed school “choice” agenda.

Here are some of Gen­er­al Marks’ rather benign com­ments from the Col­lab­o­ra­tive for Stu­dent Suc­cess video. Start­ing at the 0.59 sec­ond mark, he says,

Maj. Gen. Marks

Maj. Gen. Marks

A mil­i­tary fam­i­ly moves three times more than the aver­age Amer­i­can fam­i­ly. A ser­vice mem­ber might say “I am not going to put my chil­dren through this chal­lenge of mov­ing from school dis­trict to school dis­trict. Not just because of change, but because of incon­sis­tent stan­dards that exist between var­i­ous school dis­tricts. Fam­i­lies con­front­ed with that every day in the mil­i­tary. That should not be part of their deci­sion to make. Whether we call it Com­mon Core or what­ev­er, I don’t care. We need to raise these stan­dards. Make them uni­ver­sal across edu­ca­tion sys­tem; give our chil­dren oppor­tu­ni­ty to attain them and grow and achieve goals they want to achieve. Let’s give them a step up; I want to give them a leg up.”

Note that mil­i­tary fam­i­lies are espe­cial­ly being tar­get­ed by this ini­tia­tive. And note that one pur­pose may be to acquire more sol­diers! Is this call for Com­mon Core a recruit­ment ini­tia­tive? One can see how the video is adver­tised before click­ing the “play” button.

(7) The most well-known Gen­er­al of them all, Col­in Pow­ell, is involved as well. In an arti­cle titled “Edu­ca­tion Is the Cur­ren­cy That Mat­ters,” 9/10/12, Huff­in­g­ton Post, he and his wife Alma, who chair Amer­i­ca’s Promise Alliance, wrote

Alma & Colin Powell

Alma & Col­in Powell

In Louisville, Ky., a six-time 100 Best win­ner, where just 27 per­cent of the pop­u­la­tion has a sec­ondary edu­ca­tion, the may­or’s office and Metro Cham­ber of Com­merce estab­lished a pro­gram called 55,000 Degrees to raise edu­ca­tion lev­els in the city. Their goal: 40,000 more bach­e­lor’s degrees and 15,000 more asso­ciate degrees in their com­mu­ni­ty by 2020. Their efforts don’t stop there. To fur­ther instill a high­er edu­ca­tion cul­ture, Louisville also redesigned its high schools to pro­vide nur­tur­ing Fresh­men Acad­e­mies and small­er learn­ing com­mu­ni­ties around five career themes. They also work with the busi­ness com­mu­ni­ty to make col­lege more afford­able for stu­dents through grant and schol­ar­ship programs.

Pow­ell’s orga­ni­za­tion states: “The col­lec­tive work of the Alliance involves keep­ing Five Promis­es to chil­dren and youth that form the con­di­tions they need to achieve adult suc­cess.” Promise #4 uses the famil­iar term “effec­tive” that you read about in point 4 above. Always remem­ber how they define “effec­tive”:

To be continued.…

Relat­ed Posts:
Pro­grammed Instruc­tion: The Next Gen­er­a­tion
Tragedy in the Making
Two Peas in a Pod?
Hook­ing Chil­dren to Computers