Thursday, July 14, 2011

Teachers Preparing to Propagandize Students

Md. teachers gear up for new ‘environmental literacy’ standard
Advocates call the state a leader in environmental education. The goal of the Maryland standard, which the State Board of Education approved June 21, is to teach students to examine ecosystems and make educated decisions on how to “create and maintain an optimal relationship between themselves and the environment.”

“It’s unique, and the implication is that their Board of Education takes environmental education seriously,’’ said Linda Rhoads, interim executive director of the North American Association for Environmental Education.

Rhoads’s group is lobbying for similar efforts throughout the country. In addition, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and the District signed a compact with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation in 2000 that guaranteed school systems would provide a “meaningful bay or stream outdoor experience for every student” before leaving high school.
I have a problem with this new "requirement" if it is going to be farmed out to environmental advocacy organizations like CBF to "teach" the teachers what they will teach the students about the environment.  If there's on thing CBF is not, it's a neutral provider of information.  Will anybody "teach" the teachers that recycling bottles and paper is a waste of time and money?  Of course not.

If they need a new standard for scientific literacy, lets start with the basic; the three laws of thermodyamics:

1) You can't win,
2) You can't even break even, and
3) You can't leave the game.

Not that I'm opposed to getting the kids out in the field; far from it.  I'd like to see the kids taken out to watch the bluefish feed on menhaden in a sea of red, Bald Eagle bully Osprey into dropping their fish so they can steal it.  I'd like to see interested kids be taught to fish and hunt, if their parents can't or won't take them.  But I'm quite sure such activities will never be considered "proper" environmental education.

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