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TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby Dan Lambskin » Thu Jul 24, 2008 12:07 pm

Madison wrote:
moonhead wrote:
you're right. it shouldn't even be an issue. no one should have to complain that they are being discriminated against.


Bah, if you think that's discrimination, then you obviously think the rich should give to the poor to make everyone financially equal too then because crying "discrimination" is quite a stretch on an elective course. :-D



Mad...so you wouldnt have any issue with your tax dollars going towards an "elective" Islam class if no Christian alternative class was offered?

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as far as this whole debate, i think what we need to do is ask for the help from Big Science to clone the bible and synthezie a serum from it, inject all newborn babies with said serum, and presto...instant morality ;-D
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby spodog » Thu Jul 24, 2008 12:48 pm

Oh, how we wander . . .

Truth Serums? Non English speaking neighborhoods? American's who are too lazy to learn another language?

These are all interesting, but probably deserve their own 10 page threads.

To bring us back around to the original issue in gool 'ole Texas, a few of you need to consider some of the facts of this case as it pertains to the TX State Board of Education:

1. The TX BOE is acting within the law. The TX Legislature passed a law in '07 allowing Bible courses to be offered as electives
2. The TX BOE is being very careful to respect constitutional boundaries. Quoting from the BOE rule:

"all federal and state guidelines in maintaining religious neutrality and accommodating the diverse religious views, traditions, and perspectives of students in their school district."

and

Courses shall not "endorse, favor, or promote, or disfavor or show hostility toward, any particular religion or nonreligious faith or religious perspective,"

I think I'll fire off an email today to the TX Commissioner of Education congratulating the BOE on this bold move. The BOE is the policy making function within the Texas Education Agency.

Mr. Robert Scott is the Commissioner of Education. He oversees the Texas Education Agency. I'd encourage any of you who are pleased to see this development to also send him an email. Likewise, a few of you should probably email him with your concerns, as there is not a single course syllabus that has been presented to the BOE or to the TX State Attorney General for review as of yet.

Robert Scott Email: commissioner@tea.state.tx.us
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby The Artful Dodger » Thu Jul 24, 2008 1:13 pm

Omaha Red Sox wrote:I don't think there is a rational person out there that would tell you being bilingual is a bad thing. Making it mandatory to learn a foreign language, however, is. We have kids in some schools who can barely read and you want them to learn a different language? It'd be nice, but that just isn't going to happen. Our priorities have to be adjusted.


I've always thought of foreign language as a complementary course despite the fact it's mandatory to go along with the core elements of what should be taught in schools (i.e. math, science, English). I tend to think schools for lack of a better term, are assembly line factories of molding kids into drones but the positive thing is that some schools are slowly turning the wheel towards bringing an enriching experience that makes our kids more well-rounded and adventurous. That's what schools should be and must be for kids. Personally, if I had kids, my bias is for them to become programmers, engineers, financiers, businesspeople, and maybe entrepreneurs if they feel so compelled but schools should provide the stepping stone to an avenue of paths for kids to discover in the pursuit of what makes them happy in their careers and in a broader context, their lives.

moonhead wrote:this hard headed i'm not changing my ways attitude is bogus and one of the reasons that we are being passed by many countries in technology and education. this country is part of the world. the world is not part of this country. for the sake of advancement we need to strive to get better. we should at least be open to the idea of change.


I'll agree but with a caveat. We're falling behind in terms of education because not only are all points of the education ecosystem (i.e. students, parents, teachers, districts) flawed in some way, but because our curriculum tends to be different from elsewhere in the world. China and India, for instance, concentrate on mathematics and science from an early age because the prize jobs are in white-collar software engineer jobs and the like. European education is like ours here but there tends to be less hand-holding by the schools especially at the university level and things tend to be more accelerated. For example, learning French at 9 or 10 years old is just as important as learning English in the UK.

As for technology, we're falling behind because in Europe and Asia, they're faster to adopt standard protocols than here. It's not that we're capable as a country to produce such advanced technological offerings, it's just that there's a different design logic in American technology than there tends to be elsewhere. Does it make ours inferior? Well, not exactly.

In the grand scheme of things, I'm optimistic there will always be a high demand for American educated workers and that will show in the next few generations. The thing is we need to change the focus in our education system. I've always said this but we need to 1) teach advanced math/science in the earlier ages, 2) teach financial education again at an earlier age, and 3) encourage entrepreneurship. As I've said, schools are factories that tend to produce workers who clamor for job security as much as they want more job opportunities. We have more people in this country plunged into debt. Not all debt is bad, but a lot of people are plunged into bad debt that they have to dig themselves into more debt that they never get ahead (this is why I think we could see the slow death of the American Middle Class if we're not witnessing that already). We'll always have talent competing with ours from abroad and that's a given; the key is staying ahead of innovation at every level. For example, there will always be gifted programmers in China and India, but from personal experience, they're not quite as adept at project management and in due time, they should as they interact with American businesses. In America, we should teach our programmers to become just as adept at programming but have a stronger project management and business development background, which makes them invaluable assets in the working world.
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby Madison » Thu Jul 24, 2008 1:41 pm

Dan Lambskin wrote:
Madison wrote:
moonhead wrote:
you're right. it shouldn't even be an issue. no one should have to complain that they are being discriminated against.


Bah, if you think that's discrimination, then you obviously think the rich should give to the poor to make everyone financially equal too then because crying "discrimination" is quite a stretch on an elective course. :-D



Mad...so you wouldnt have any issue with your tax dollars going towards an "elective" Islam class if no Christian alternative class was offered?


As a taxpayer, I'd think that it was pretty dumb they didn't offer an alternative for what the majority believe in. One would think that they'd start with the majority, and work their way down if it wasn't possible to cover them all from the very beginning. But to answer the question, I wouldn't get worked up or cause a fuss or anything. There's dumb stuff just like that all over the country, so what's one more? :-b
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby deerayfan072 » Thu Jul 24, 2008 4:14 pm

Courses shall not "endorse, favor, or promote, or disfavor or show hostility toward, any particular religion or nonreligious faith or religious perspective,"


By allowing the course on the bible and not other religions it gives the impression that they are endorsing and promoting a particular religion.
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby spodog » Thu Jul 24, 2008 8:22 pm

deerayfan072 wrote:
Courses shall not "endorse, favor, or promote, or disfavor or show hostility toward, any particular religion or nonreligious faith or religious perspective,"


By allowing the course on the bible and not other religions it gives the impression that they are endorsing and promoting a particular religion.


Where in the TX law does it say that courses on other religions are not allowed?
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby deerayfan072 » Thu Jul 24, 2008 9:10 pm

spodog wrote:
deerayfan072 wrote:
Courses shall not "endorse, favor, or promote, or disfavor or show hostility toward, any particular religion or nonreligious faith or religious perspective,"


By allowing the course on the bible and not other religions it gives the impression that they are endorsing and promoting a particular religion.


Where in the TX law does it say that courses on other religions are not allowed?


not that they have not allowed, but the fact that they have this class, but do not have others leads to that assumption for many people.
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby Madison » Thu Jul 24, 2008 11:58 pm

deerayfan072 wrote:not that they have not allowed, but the fact that they have this class, but do not have others leads to that assumption for many people.


A perfect example of why "assuming" is a bad thing and something people should know better than to do. ;-)

Thinking about it like a normal person, the obvious would be that either they don't currently have teachers for the other religions, or they don't currently have the budget (and/or space) to hire in more teachers.

But of course there are those who will "assume" the worst simply because they'd rather stir the pot :-b instead of finding out more about the program and seeing what the overall plan is and where it goes.
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Re: TX State Board of Education approves Bible course in schools

Postby wake » Fri Jul 25, 2008 2:04 am

Madison wrote:As Knapp said, I'm a Christian (not the best of Christians I'll admit), and in high school if there had been an elective on atheism, I probably wouldn't have chosen that course.


You did, it was your science class :-b :-)

Madison wrote:If being 100% open to everything, then why don't I hear you complaining about the lack of foreign languages taught in schools? I'm a perfect example, had to choose between Latin and Spanish.


That's kind of the point though. It's not that having a Christianity elective is a horrible, unconstitutional thing; it's that there are many better choices. For example, in your case, a french class might be a better choice than a Christian elective. There's easy alternatives for students wanting to learn about Christianity, it's much harder to find a class teaching french outside of school.
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