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                     Whitsett on federally mandated environmental propaganda in our schools

Oregon Senator Doug Whitsett's talk on KFLS July 21, 2008

A public law, called the “No Child Left Inside Act”, is currently being debated in Washington D.C. I believe this Act should be of serious concern to everyone regardless of our political affiliations or our environmental concerns.

HR 3036 proposes to amend “No Child Left Behind” to indoctrinate our kindergarten through high school students on federal government environmental policies The law proposes to provide $100 million in federal education grant money each year to state education departments to perform federal government mandated environmental education.      

Title two provides grant money to ensure that elementary and high school students are environmentally literate. The plan is for state education agencies to develop an environmental education plan suitable to the mandates of the United States Department of Education. The plan further calls for the education agencies to enlist the aid of state environmental and natural resources agencies, as well as state and national nonprofit environmental organizations, to establish course content.

The plan requires the professional development of teachers to improve their knowledge of environmental issues, and their skill in teaching environmental dogma. The grant structure strongly encourages establishing partnerships with state and local environmental agencies, and with nonprofit or for-profit environmental organizations, to enhance the professional development of our teaching corp.

The plan proposes to establish the quantity and the content of government selected environmental knowledge required to be demonstrated before a student can graduate high school.

Title five creates and additional environmental education grants system to encourage nonprofit environmental organizations to develop environmental education programs that can be utilized by state and local education agencies.

A direct quote from the bill explanation states:

“Climate changes, depletion of natural resources, air and water problems and other environmental challenges are pressing and complex issues that threaten human health, economic development, and national security. Finding widespread agreement about what specific steps we need to take to solve these problems is difficult. Environmental education will help ensure our nation’s children have the knowledge and skills necessary to address these complex issues.”

Apparently, the chosen method of establishing widespread agreement is for the federal government to provide grants to indoctrinate our children with their chosen environmental dogma.

Currently 1.2 million teachers are providing thirty million students programs that range from environmental science courses to interdisciplinary approaches that integrate the entire curriculum with an environmental theme. However, the bill description further laments that schools are choosing to reduce, or abandon, environmental education in favor of emphasizing more time and resources in teaching reading and math. They conclude that “No Child Left Behind must provide schools and school systems with incentives, flexibility, and authority to develop and deliver environmental education programs”

HR 3036 establishes the means for the federal government to provide grants covering up to 90% of the cost to support systemic education reform by strengthening academic content and student achievement standards in environmental learning.

Of course, with that 90% funding comes virtual complete control over teacher environmental education, what they teach to our kids, and what environmental dogma our kids must be able to regurgitate to graduate high school.

This bill places an entirely new meaning on public education. It appears to replace mandatory education standards with mandatory environmental propaganda. History is replete with examples of the despotism and tyranny that follows the mandatory indoctrination of a nation’s youth with selected government dogma.

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