Not Being Taught
A Deficient Curriculum
Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Commentary; #1353c; 15 minutes
Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting on some final exams given to 8th graders during the early 20th Century in Salina, Kansas, appearing frequently on the Internet, marvels at the dearth of practical thinking and reasoning skills demonstrated by the clients of today's 'progressive' educational system. Pupils a hundred years ago often demonstrated more skill at cause-effect relationships, geographical knowledge, historical details, phonetics, and meteorological concepts. 'Progressive' liberals, citing the 'reliable' Snopes.com, complain that these questions were too fact- and date-oriented, as well as too U.S.-centric. Liberals ignore the fact that 'progressive' education has failed to teach basic skills and knowledge and principles of sound reasoning. 'Progressive education' does away with cursive handwriting, home economics, memorizing times tables, phonics, spelling, drills and time tests. History and social studies have been yanked leftward, smearing the accomplishments of the Founding fathers, branding them as racist. 'Progressives' have dumbed down civics, government, and economics, again aligning them hopelessly leftward, away from the concepts of checks and balances, the rationale for the Electoral College, the basic economic principles. Instead, students are taught "techniques" they can use to score high on standardized tests. What is missing in 'progressive' education are practical life skills which would safeguard individuals from being led around by the nose.
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