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April 23, 2022

Racism is Everywhere in our schools . . . Except in Florida


Prospective math textbook for Florida students:
Conservatives are racially prejudiced

I recently ran across a social media post which included a Fox News story about how Florida rejected 41% of the 132 submitted textbooks. One of those "reasonable" liberal commenters (I really don't think he is from the hard left) thought it was lame that the story included no examples of CRT or other offensive materials in the math textbooks. People responded with examples of teacher textbooks and other materials, but it really was difficult to verify information from the newly reviewed textbooks. I tried, and only succeeded in finding something on a teaching conference concerning English and Rhetoric instruction (below the fold). Anyway, back to math:

Florida called for textbook submissions from publishers in 2021 in accordance with a 2019 executive order from DeSantis aimed at eliminating Common Core standards in the state. The textbooks rejected "were impermissible with either Florida's new standards or contained prohibited topics."

The 41% rejection rate was the highest in Florida's history.

132 textbooks were submitted, according to the story. How many new textbooks did they need?

Publishers have the right of appeal. That's when things might get interesting.

Yesterday, Epoch Times reported that Florida had released examples of "problematic" materials from the textbooks. Here is one. There are more at the link in the quote:

The examples' publishing followed the DOE's Monday announcement to "reject publishers' attempts to indoctrinate students" with ideologies such as the CRT.

In one of the pictures shown on Florida's DOE website, a math question on polynomials shows what appears to be a quantified measure of racial prejudice on the vertical axis plotted against "political identification" on the horizontal axis.

The figure appears to imply that those who are politically conservative have a higher level of racial prejudice.

See the figure at the top of the page.

From the Florida DOE:

DISCLAIMER: Based on the volume of requests the Department has received for examples of problematic elements of the recently reviewed instructional materials, the following are examples provided to the department by the public and presented no conflict in sharing them. These examples do not represent an exhaustive list of input received by the Department. The Department is continuing to give publishers the opportunity to remediate all deficiencies identified during the review to ensure the broadest selection of high quality instructional materials are available to the school districts and Florida's students.

* * * * *

More on Math Instruction

Reassurance that all is well from a social media commenter:

My teacher friend assures me that indoctrination is impossible, because she can't even get students to turn in their homework.

Well, maybe that's because MATH IS RACIST!

Ace linked this piece more than a year ago, but it is still relevant. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation bankrolled this program. I read another piece about its use in Oregon, but I can't find it now.

This toolkit is for grades 6 - 8:

Math is racist. Wrong answers are white supremacy

The toolkit focuses on the 2021 progressive buzzword of "equity" and claims white supremacy and mathematics go hand in hand.

The resources help educators rid their classrooms of the scourge of racist math by making their students dumber. For example, the lessons in Dismantling Racism in Mathematics Instruction warn educators that "white supremacy culture" shows up in the classroom when teachers "treat mistakes as problems by equating them with wrongness" because it "reinforces the ideas of perfectionism (that students shouldn't make mistakes) and paternalism (teachers or other experts can and should correct mistakes)."

It doesn't explain why this is white supremacist culture. It just says that it is. . .

A quick way to dismantle the white supremacist culture, according to the text, is to eliminate order in the classroom. . .

Instead, it recommends you teach math via "storytelling circles, incorporating dance, music, song, call and response, and other cultural ways of communicating."

Don't powerhoard by having kids raise their hands!

The guidebook will help you admit your virulent racism and reform your mind and life so that you can effectively reach your marginalized students:

Once completed, you're on your way to challenging "the ways that math is used to uphold capitalist, imperialist, and racist views."

"Often the emphasis is placed on learning math in the 'real world,' as if our classrooms are not a part of the real world," the text reads. "This reinforces notions of either/or thinking because math is only seen as useful when it is in a particular context. However, this can result in using mathematics to uphold capitalist and imperialist ways of being and understandings of the world."

Maybe you could help your students understand why Bill Gates is interested in bankrolling this math program.

* * * * *

In December, USA Today also asked, Is math racist?

Baldilocks commented:

If @USATODAY editors had a pair, they'd come straight out and ask whether blacks are inferior or not. Because that the question they are really asking.

* * * * *

A little more news on math instruction via David Thompson: Sweden is lowering math standards, too. That is not consistent with their reputation. GUESS WHY. Give yourself 5 seconds, then follow the link.

And in Ontario, Canada:

It is now illegal to use a math test to make sure that math teachers know the material they would be teaching.

* * * * *

Standardized English is Racist

While I was looking for a non-conservative commentator with whom the liberal critic of the Fox News story on Florida textbooks might relate, I ran across this piece concerning challenges to the teaching of standard English:

At the 2022 Conference on College Composition and Communication, the flagship conference in the field of rhetoric and composition, prominent scholars participated in a panel on proper learning outcomes and anti-racist teaching practices. The panel involved a discussion on allowing students in First-Year Writing classes--which are mandatory in most institutions--to write in what is called "home dialects" or "code-meshed English." The former refers to a non-mainstream dialect that is the preferred mode of communication in a student's home environment, and the latter to a synthesis of a student's home dialect and a more standardized dialect of English. According to the panelists and many others in the field of rhetoric, teaching standardized English to students of color, especially black students, is inherently racist and oppressive. In order to achieve "linguistic justice," therefore, it is believed that students must be allowed to write in their home dialects.

"Linguistic justice!"

. . . the following question was posed during a Zoom Q&A session after a panel presentation by a professor concerned about the resistance he was experiencing from his "BIPOC" students:
What do we do with their resistance to code meshing, for example, in our writing classrooms [when it] comes from our BIPOC students? I ask because my attempts to encourage students to use their home dialects in writing, black students in particular often resist those practices [as] setting them up for failure, which only reflects how ingrained they are in a system that is inherently racist, that they become unable to trust efforts to resist standard American English as the only way of writing/composing.

WHAT? BIPOC students would rather learn standard English? If they do, they are selfish. All the top professors of English and Rhetoric agree!

One of the professors, Asao Inoue, is a -- if not the -- leading anti-racist scholar in the field of rhetoric and composition. Inoue's answer to the aforementioned question about what to do in the face of resistance to code-meshing or home dialects, excerpted here, was even more troubling. . .

Reminiscent of the now-infamous "Aspects of Whiteness" flier from the National Museum of African American History and Culture, Inoue sees several vices in what many -- I dare say most -- would call virtues. In Above the Well: An Antiracist Literacy Argument from a Boy of Color, a half memoir/half argument for "linguistic justice," Inoue writes that individuality, rationality, self-control, clarity, and order are aspects of white spaces and are therefore confining to people of color who find themselves in them.

In a textbook example of defeatism and fatalism, Inoue also insisted later in his response that minority students, and minorities in general, are doomed in American society. . .

Inoue clarifies throughout his response that his real purpose in teaching is counter-hegemonic activism, not giving young people the writing skills they need to be successful in the professional world. Both Inoue and the professor who asked the initial question are impeding the healthy development of each student's individual identity. Demanding that students of color see themselves first and foremost as members of their racial group and not as individuals is, in a very real sense, a racist endeavor. This exchange perfectly reflects the devolution of my field of rhetoric, which I have witnessed first hand over the last decade, as well as the increasing infantilization and victimization of black students that has become so common within academia.

* * * * *

David Thompson found the same piece and has some typical, incisive points:

But in Dr Inoue's classroom, a student's ambition to develop linguistic skills, to be clearly understood, and to succeed in life, must be subordinate to the paranoid, tribal politics conceived, rather feverishly, by Dr Inoue. So, no selfishness there, clearly. As a display of the pernicious and perverse, it's quite a thing. Achieving proficiency and wishing to be taken seriously as someone capable of thought are framed by Dr Inoue as some kind of internalised oppression. And being able to express yourself precisely, and getting a job you want, is somehow a failure, a betrayal of authentic blackness. And by implication, getting on in life - being able to provide for yourself and your family - is, according to Dr Inoue, "a really shitty choice."

This, then, is the man to whom hopes should be entrusted.

This is the kind of guy whose writing David Thompson likes to monitor:

Dr Inoue has of course been mentioned here before, as when telling us that teachers should "dispense almost completely with judgements of quality when producing course grades," on grounds that a student's ability to convey their thoughts in writing - and to formulate thoughts by writing - is merely a manifestation of "white language supremacy," an allegedly lethal phenomenon. And when boasting that a simple 495-word press release for his own "racial justice" Writing Centre took "over a year" to write. As if this reflected some profundity of thought, and not a more prosaic explanation.

As noted at the time,

Apparently, the way for minority students to flourish as writers is for them to dismiss any criticism of their prose, and any attempt to improve it, as a racially motivated "microaggression" and an "oppressive practice," and thus proof of "an inherently racist society." You see, students with brown skin needn't be articulate, verbally self-possessed, or precise in their thoughts. And that ungrammatical job application, the one enlivened with incomprehensible sentences and lots of inventive spelling, will do just fine. And by the time the real-world consequences of this "social justice" posturing become difficult to avoid, Dr Inoue will have been paid - and be merrily exploiting the next batch of suckers.

* * * * *

Did they really just outlaw parts of this kind of nonsense in Florida?

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed legislation on Friday that aims to regulate how schools and businesses address race and gender, the state's latest effort to restrict education about those topics.

The law, which has become known as the "Stop WOKE Act," prohibits workplace training or school instruction that teaches that individuals are "inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously"; that people are privileged or oppressed based on race, gender, or national origin; or that a person "bears personal responsibility for and must feel guilt, anguish, or other forms of psychological distress" over actions committed in the past by members of the same race, gender, or national origin. The law says such trainings or lessons amount to discrimination.

* * * * *

David Thompson also linked some earlier materials to demonstrate that Dr. Inoue was not the only problem.

Sounding dim and uneducated is now, it seems, something to aspire to and encourage, especially at universities:

A sociolinguist from Stanford University claims the way African-Americans speak leads to discrimination across the board -- in the court system, interactions with police, education, and employment. Professor John Rickford says, "Black Vernacular English" is viewed as less "trustworthy, intelligent and well-educated" than so-called standard "white" English, and that "dismantling this construction is part of the fight for racial justice." Rickford, who is the current president of the Linguistic Society of America, said the "modern-day racialisation of language" -- which mandates that African-Americans conform to the white norm -- has its roots in slavery.

In other words, bad whitey. Because judging people by what falls from their mouths - its comprehensibility, precision and so forth - is racist and oppressive. And if someone sounds barely literate, and uninterested in being understood by anyone outside of their immediate circle, then you should pretend that this is somehow your fault. It's the way of the woke.

We've been here before, of course, when CUNY's Dr A. W. Strouse - an enthusiast of "social justice" and whose dissertation is titled Literary Theories of the Foreskin - denounced "bourgeois white teachers" and insisted that correcting errors of spelling and basic grammar can "make students feel bewildered, hurt, or angry," and should therefore be abandoned. . .

Someone sent in an article from The Atlantic on college debaters who were breaking down white supremacy in college debate in America. Here was a winning team using the debate style celebrated in the piece in The Atlantic. David Thompson:

Again, via the comments, behold the zenith of this mindset:
Uh, man's sole "jabringing" object disfigure religion trauma and nubs, uh, the, inside the trauma of representation that turns into the black child devouring and identifying with the stories and into the white culture brought up, uh, de de de de de, dink, and add subjectively like a white man, the black man!
Do watch the video. Though I should point out that you may want to bite down on something. But hey, a degrading racial caricature, a cartoonish pantomime of blackness, complete with claims of "nigga authenticity" and actual jabbering, is now the last word in wokeness.

How far we've come.

They really had to study hard for that debate. You could tell, right?

Actually, the above "debate" is quite symbolic of the broader Angry Studies hustle. Credulous and ungifted students are being told, by ungifted educators, that the way to win a debate and to establish one's intellectual heft, is to retreat into a degrading racial caricature, a cartoonish pantomime of blackness, complete with actual jabbering, while ignoring the ostensible topic, disregarding the rules for reciprocation, and shouting profanities at the moderators. As if this behaviour, for which they're applauded by their peers, will serve them well in the adult world. Say, when looking for a job.

And so we have pseudo-students who are laughably unsuited to an academic environment receiving a pseudo-education that's intellectually vacuous and actually hinders their chances in life, thanks to incompetent and dogmatic pseudo-educators, all bankrolled with loans that may never be repaid. If it weren't actually happening, for real, at great expense, it would be darkly hilarious.

* * * * *

"The Angry Studies Hustle" . . . I like it.

Wilfred Reilly, thread:

All Wokism is just facially stupid bullshit, originating in the academic fields that were initially set up as "too easy to fail." #no_punch_line


* * * * *

Has Higher Education become too self-absorbed even outside Angry Studies?

Not all of the incomprehensible nature of the debate above is due to Angry Studies, though. Where did this CEDA style of debate come from? What is it useful for?
Must cost a lot in student loan money. Maybe they should change the debate rules so that the students need to show they can operate a backhoe, rather than read an essay really, really fast.

Read the comments.

Below, Berkeley v. Harvard


this is the most unpleasant thing I have experienced in a very long time, and maybe its just because I am autistic, but I would prefer to live in a country where this is completely illegal and people are arrested for ever showing it to me.

unfortunately I cannot do much else but just say, this is beyond my usual capacity to tolerate the existence of something "not in my wheelhouse". I would feel very considerably more comfortable living in a world where this doesn't exist at all and I hope by some mercy one day I will. For now I will try to forget this experience and hope I never, ever encounter it again.

The debate organizers are obviously ableist bigots.

* * * * *


Ragtime Nightingale

Hope you have something nice planned for this weekend.

This is the Thread before the Gardening Thread.

Serving your mid-day open thread needs

* * * * *

Last week's Thread: Passover and Easter Weekend

Comments are closed so you won't ban yourself by trying to comment on a week-old thread. But don't try it anyway.

digg this
posted by K.T. at 11:16 AM

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