The Second Purge…

June 24, 2019 ~ The project has begun. For those readers who have been regular followers of Metropolis Café. The days of Metropolis are winding down – although it’s purpose and intent and will continue on – at the Federal Observer where our journey began so many years ago.

We are in the process of migration and have some nine-hundred columns remaining to transfer to the other site. It may take months, or we may be able to have it migrated within a matter of days. As of this date, Metropolis Café is still an operational site, but will eventually close. At the present time, most of our columns, opinions and posts on Metropolis Café are still here, however as the migration progresses, you’ll find all new posts at their new destination – the Federal Observer.

New posts have already been published – all in the same categories which we have maintained on Metropolis Café.

To stay up to date, we invite you to follow this link, beginning today: Le Metropolis Café at Federal Observer

Stay tuned and we will keep you updated. ~ Jeffrey Bennett, Publisher

Public Torn Between Support for School Spending and Actually Paying the Tab

Teachers and education activists march from Riverfront Park to the Oregon State Capitol for a day of action Wednesday, May 8, 2019 in Salem, Ore. Tens of thousands of teachers across Oregon walked off the job Wednesday to demand more money for schools, holding signs and wearing red shirts that have become synonymous with a nationwide movement pushing lawmakers to better fund education. — Anna Reed/Statesman-Journal via AP

The most remarkable thing about the recent wave of teacher strikes may be the widespread public support for something that’s ultimately going to put a squeeze on the taxpayer’s wallet. Continue reading

Bastiat’s “The Law” Is a Symphony of Ideas That Can Teach Us Justice

Frederic Bastiat’s “The Law,” written near the end of his life in 1850 France, is a symphony of ideas.

My high school economic students are reading their first book of the year, one that is close to the hearts of liberty lovers: Frederic Bastiat’s The Law, written near the end of his life in 1850 France. This is my third year teaching it to freshmen, and I find it more and more excellent every time I read it. The words and arguments come off the pages like notes and melodies, and it feels like a symphony of ideas.

Natural Law
Its first movement is powerful and audacious, beginning with a blasting fanfare of our natural, God-given rights. From nature we are granted life—physical, intellectual, and moral. Life alone cannot sustain itself, so we must apply the talents and faculties given to us by nature to develop, preserve, and perfect our lives. Continue reading

Schools Are Tracking YOUR Child’s Mental Health – Whether YOU Like It or Not

Whether it’s security cameras, armed guards, or psychological screenings, mass schooling is becoming increasingly prison-like.

A worrying trend is emerging in schools across the country. With increasing regularity, school districts are tracking students’ mental health and raising flags if a screening shows something amiss. Continue reading

Adulting Day’ at one high school teaches teens to cook, change a tire and pay bills

When I was in high school we had Home Ec and Shop to teach us those daily things. Home Ec also taught us how to care for an ill family member – how to change sheets and make a bed; how to sew things as well as how to keep a house clean and orderly. The shop classes taught woodworking, auto mechanics, etc.

The ADULTING DAY idea is great but it needs to be more of an ADULTING MONTH – including how to change a light bulb, how to fix a leaky faucet, how to clean a plugged drain, etc. All those things that are part of every day life. But then, nowadays, the schools would have to bring in professionals to show them how to do it as most teachers wouldn’t have a clue. I can just see todays youngsters (and adults) asking Google, Alexis, or those other talking tech things to tell them how to do something —other than to spy on all that goes on in your house.

How about teaching our kids how to do something PRODUCTIVE for a change???? ~ Jackie Juntti (Granny) Continue reading

End School Compulsory-Attendance Laws

Imagine if Congress were to enact a law that required everyone to attend church on Sundays. The overwhelming majority of Americans would go up in arms. The concept of religious liberty is so deeply ingrained in our American heritage that there is no way that people, including devout Christians, would accept such a law. That heritage was enshrined in the First Amendment, which prohibits Congress from enacting such a law.

Now, suppose things had been the exact opposite… Continue reading

Restructuring American Education

What will it take to reshape our care-worn system? Money, talent, and time.

Editor’s NOTE: There are times when Metropolis Café finds it beneficial to take a time machine back some years – just to study how our Public Education system was being looked upon at that time. The following was written in early 2002. How far we have fallen – and the same questions are being asked 17 years later. ~ Ed.

More teachers, more vouchers, more computers, more charter schools, more tests, more federal money, more local control, more, more, more. The calls constitute a cacophony of pleas and threats, warnings and promises from public figures, parents, teachers, and other citizens – all asking for more learning.

As each call is debated, pushed, shot down, revived, and discarded again, we move around the same endless circle, once again looking for a place to stick another Band-Aid on an institution suffering from malnutrition and structural inadequacy. Continue reading

The ADHD Overdiagnosis Epidemic Is a Schooling Problem, Not a Child One

Today, children are being diagnosed with, and often medicated for, ADHD at an astonishing rate.

Childhood exuberance is now a liability. Behaviors that were once accepted as normal, even if mildly irritating to adults, are increasingly viewed as unacceptable and cause for medical intervention. High energy, lack of impulse control, inability to sit still and listen, lack of organizational skills, fidgeting, talking incessantly—these typical childhood qualities were widely tolerated until relatively recently. Today, children with these characteristics are being diagnosed with, and often medicated for, Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) at an astonishing rate. (Continue to Dr. Kelley’s Victory Over Cancer…)

The U.S. is a Democratic Constitutional Republic, and Yes, It Matters

James Madison, the father of the U.S. Constitution and primary author of the Bill of Rights, repeatedly emphasized that the United States is a “republic” and not a “democracy.” In stark contrast, Jonathan Bernstein, a Bloomberg columnist and former political science professor recently insisted:

One of this age’s great crank ideas, that the U.S. is a ‘republic’ and not a ‘democracy’, is gaining so much ground that people in Michigan are trying to rewrite textbooks to get rid of the term ‘democracy’.”

“For all practical purposes, and in most contexts, ‘republic’ and ‘democracy’ are synonyms.” Continue reading

Why Schools Must Stop Relying on ‘Best Practices’ When Teaching Writing

When it comes to writing, American kids just don’t cut it. Only 27 percent of eighth grade students achieve proficiency in the subject, according to The Nation’s Report Card.

That shouldn’t surprise us given the type of writing instruction which takes place in schools. Today’s writing instruction, a recent op-ed from The Hechinger Report explains, revolves around a child expressing his ideas on paper. Schools seem to believe that students have all the knowledge and inspiration locked up inside them. This knowledge simply needs to be let loose in order to create a written masterpiece. Continue reading

Mis-education: An inside job…

College board president behind SAT ‘adversity score’ was also the mastermind of the controversial K-12 ‘Common Core’ curriculum changes that has children just learning for a test

College Board president David Coleman

The man behind the new plan to assign adversity scores to every student who takes the SAT is the same person who championed the controversial Common Core K-12 curriculum standards that remain a point of contention among parents, teachers and political leaders in many states.

David Coleman, president of The College Board, which administers the SAT, was the ‘architect of Common Core’ – which several states dropped after its adoption due to pressure from local communities and educators, according to Fox News.

Proponents of Common Core say the method was meant to establish a baseline of curriculum standards for K-12 education, with a focus on math and English language arts literacy.

It implemented broad new standards for how much a student should know and be able to do at the end of each scholastic year, leading to what critics said was ‘teaching to the test’ – or a system in which teachers are under so much pressure to get their students to perform well on the test that other educational priorities fell by the wayside in favor of test preparation. Continue reading

The Dicey Illumanist Foundations of Modern Public Education

In the previous article to this one I noted Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi who founded a branch of the Illuminati in Zurich, Swtizerland in 1783. This might not seem important to some, but we need to begin to grasp the influence that Pestalozzi had on modern education.

On britannica.com in an article updated on 2/13/19 it was observed that “Pestalozzi’s method (of education) became widely accepted and most of his principles have been absorbed into modern elementary education… His ideas flow from the same stream of thought that includes Johann Friedrich Herbart, Maria Montessori, John Dewey…” You may not be that familiar with the first two mentioned here, but if you have read any of my previous articles on public education then you have to know where John Dewey, atheist and socialist, was coming from. Naturally the Britannica article made no mention of Pestalozzi’s Illumanist connections, but then, you would hardly expect them to. Continue reading

Kindergarten the new first grade? It’s actually worse than that…

Kindergarteners Noah Bellamy, L, and Morgan Creek read together during their kindergarten class library visit at Peabody Elementary School on Wednesday, February 25, 2015, in Washington, DC. (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post)

There is a newly published study out of the University of Virginia titled, “Is Kindergarten the New First Grade?” (based on a 2014 working paper), which finds, not surprisingly, that it is. This work should not be confused with the the 2009 study “Crisis in the Kindergarten” from the nonprofit Alliance for Childhood, which said:

Kindergartners are now under great pressure to meet inappropriate expectations, including academic standards that until recently were reserved for first grade.
Continue reading

How quickly a Nation forgets the importance of Education

From the Father of Education himself,

Noah Webster

Noah Webster’s would define the word in his 1828 dictionary For the American Language:

EDUCA’TION, noun [Latin; educatio.] The bringing up, as of a child, instruction; formation of manners. education comprehends all that series of instruction and discipline which is intended to enlighten the understanding, correct the temper, and form the manners and habits of youth, and fit them for usefulness in their future stations. To give children a good education in manners, arts and science, is important; to give them a religious education is indispensable; and an immense responsibility rests on parents and guardians who neglect these duties.” Continue reading