Left-wing teachers

The state of education across the world

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Mike » 12 Apr 2013, 02:50

On Twitter he describes himself as “Socalist (sic), teacher, gay, dyslexic, veggie, Londoner”, has posted a series of left-wing messages, using an expletive when referring to the Conservatives.


Has anyone else noticed that it's become a bit of a fashion statement to describe oneself as dyslexic these days? As with ADHD, Asperger's and everything else, the diagnosis of dyslexia seems to have expanded beyond all logic. And for some reason people seem to be wearing their "dyslexia" as a badge of pride.
Mike
 
Posts: 402
Joined: 01 Aug 2011, 11:08
Location: Australia

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Gavin » 12 Apr 2013, 08:40

Yes, I have noticed that, Mike. It's almost up there with "bi-polar" now.
Gavin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3432
Joined: 27 Jul 2011, 18:13
Location: Once Great Britain

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Charlie » 12 Apr 2013, 09:43

Elliott wrote:At any rate his witterings display a degree of moral relativism which would surely please any modern education manager.


This crops up everywhere doesn't it?

My parents are planning to spend a few days in France this year, so at Christmas, I bought my Mum a well-known language learning course so that she could brush up on her rusty French.

The course, whose name I won't mention here, is good by all accounts, but guess what it says on the front cover:

"There's no such thing as a bad student, only a bad teacher."

Once again, we see the transferral of responsibility. I know that adult language learning is a bit different, but had they written something like: "Let our course guide you through the language", that would have been more acceptable or realistic, but to say that "there's no such thing as a bad student, only a bad teacher"? Totally fallacious.
Charlie
 
Posts: 435
Joined: 13 Jan 2013, 19:43

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Elliott » 12 Apr 2013, 17:02

It's one of those irritating "chicken and egg" things, like the slutwalk debate over whether a rapist or "rapee" is responsible for the rape. Of course there are bad teachers, and they can dull the enthusiasm of any student. But of course there are bad students, determined not to learn, determined to make every little thing difficult for the teacher. Both parties are responsible. That is the way of human social interaction. I could be telling a really funny joke but, if the other person is determined not to laugh, I'm going to end up looking like a guy who tells unfunny jokes. A morally decent and materially successful exchange relies on both parties; neither of them can just sit back, do whatever damage he pleases, then blame the other. Yet that is exactly what is recommended by the credo that "there's no such thing as a bad student".

It's quite interesting, though, because it is the product not just of post-Marxian cultural/moral relativism, but also of the consumer society. I say that because it puts the teacher (or the joke-teller, etc.) in the role of "merchant" and the student in the role of "customer" - and for some reason within the marketplace we have accepted that the customer is always right - ergo, the student is always good and the teacher is responsible, knowingly or unknowingly, for any problems that arise. It's very much a product of a society obsessed with legislation and roles, and treating people like robots.
Elliott
 
Posts: 1800
Joined: 31 Jul 2011, 22:32
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Charlie » 12 Apr 2013, 19:46

Elliott wrote:It's quite interesting, though, because it is the product not just of post-Marxian cultural/moral relativism, but also of the consumer society.


The only thing I'd add is that, in my opinion, the former far outweighs the latter in terms of its influence on education.
Charlie
 
Posts: 435
Joined: 13 Jan 2013, 19:43

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Nathan » 02 May 2013, 20:43

A retired teacher ranting about the unfairness of the "fantastic members of the communi'y" having their application for a megamosque in East London turned down.

Nathan
 
Posts: 880
Joined: 08 Dec 2012, 17:58


Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Grant » 06 May 2013, 12:00

Nathan, I think you're edging close to the realm of urban myth with the term "unofficial ban" and no identification of the school. Some facts may bolster your argument.
Grant
 
Posts: 121
Joined: 01 Apr 2013, 09:14

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Nathan » 06 May 2013, 12:26

It identifies the school in the link.

One of London's top prep schools has brought in an unofficial ban on 'best friends' in case other children are left hurt and ostracised.

Pupils at the £4,500-a-term Thomas's private day school in Battersea should instead have 'lots of good friends' to maintain harmony in the classroom.

Headteacher Ben Thomas believes that having best friends leads to possessive relationships and more tearful fall-outs at school.

Mr Thomas maintains there is no official policy on the matter, but some parents claim they have been told their child should not have a best friend.

'There is sound judgment behind it. You can get very possessive friendships, and it is much easier if they share friendships and have a wide range of good friends rather than obsessing too much about who their best friend is,' Mr Thomas told the Daily Telegraph.

'I would certainly endorse a policy which says we should have lots of good friends, not a best friend. I would be happy to make it school policy, although it would need to be age-appropriate.



How can anybody who has ever even been a child, let alone a man who's obviously been working in education long enough to have reached a high position think that it is possible to stop children from thinking in a way that's entirely natural to them?
Nathan
 
Posts: 880
Joined: 08 Dec 2012, 17:58

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Jonathan » 06 May 2013, 14:17

Nathan wrote:How can anybody who has ever even been a child, let alone a man who's obviously been working in education long enough to have reached a high position think that it is possible to stop children from thinking in a way that's entirely natural to them?


It's taken directly from Aldous Huxley's Brave New World: "Everybody belongs to everybody else".
Jonathan
 
Posts: 411
Joined: 03 Aug 2011, 05:14
Location: Israel

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Grant » 07 May 2013, 08:18

Nathan, my apologies regarding the source. The elaboration provides some head-shaking moments to someone who's been in education over thirty years. Mandating that children cannot have best friends is akin to Canute and his opposition to the tides.
As people who've seen a bit of life, we know smoothing out every crease and wrinkle in a child's life does them no favours in the long term. There was an excellent article about building resilience in children in our sole conservative broadsheet over here and may be found at http://www.theaustralian.com.au/arts/re ... 6623338452
Grant
 
Posts: 121
Joined: 01 Apr 2013, 09:14

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Andreas » 07 May 2013, 21:18

There is a lot of discussion these days at U.S. universities about the merits and drawbacks of online education and massive open online courses (MOOCs). Harvard University has made one of its courses widely available online, a course on concepts of justice, taught by Michael Sandel. The philosophy department at San Jose State University (a state school in California) refused to make use of this course when the University administration asked them to. The department members recently wrote an open letter to Professor Sandel in the Chronicle of Higher Education.

http://chronicle.com/article/The-Docume ... er/138937/

They present a number of valid criticisms of online education and good arguments for traditional teaching. Unfortunately and predictably, though, they can't help veering into the domain of "diversity."

WHAT WOULD OUR STUDENTS LEARN ABOUT JUSTICE THROUGH A PURCHASED BLENDED COURSE FROM A PRIVATE VENDOR?

First, what kind of message are we sending our students if we tell them that they should best learn what justice is by listening to the reflections of the largely white student population from a privileged institution like Harvard? Our very diverse students gain far more when their own experience is central to the course and when they are learning from our own very diverse faculty, who bring their varied perspectives to the content of courses that bear on social justice.


No doubt the professors in San Jose are driven in part by resentment of Harvard and fear that they may lose their jobs as more education moves online. But this does not excuse the racism or "essentialism" implicit in this statement ("very diverse" is better than "largely white" -- four legs good, two legs bad). There is a very rude assumption that because Professor Sandel is white and teaches at Harvard, he lacks the imagination or experience to understand people with backgrounds other than his own. "Our very diverse students gain far more when their own experience is central to the course"; so presumably they would be wasting their time in reading Jeremy Bentham, John Stuart Mill, Immanuel Kant, and Aristotle (required reading for the Harvard course). It's sad to see university faculty members with such a tribal, anti-intellectual attitude.
Andreas
 
Posts: 195
Joined: 04 Sep 2012, 22:31

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Elliott » 08 May 2013, 01:09

I also wonder how an education in philosophy could be improved by studying amidst a diverse group of people. Philosophical problems are abstract; you don't need to be black or white or have a mixed-race friend to understand them. Surely this open-endedness, this abstraction, is a key feature of all philosophical, political and moral debate?

Just because it's fresh in my mind, I'll use the Prisoner's Dilemma as an example. Let's say it's being discussed by a white lecturer to a group of white students. They examine it thoroughly. Now, how would this examination be any more thorough if the group of students were mixed black, white, Chinese, etc.? I don't think it could or would.

The very idea that it would be is ludicrous, and apart from anything else betrays a lack of faith in the mental flexibility of university students and their application to the subject they have chosen to study, the ability of professors to communicate ideas and problems effectively, and possibly a lack of interest (on the part of the advocates of diversity) in the subject itself, except where it can be used as a vehicle for "diversity". As usual, diversity is the aim, not education.

Were philosophy degrees a hundred years ago taught ineffectively by white tutors and learned badly by white students? No.
Elliott
 
Posts: 1800
Joined: 31 Jul 2011, 22:32
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Caleb » 08 May 2013, 02:07

When I was training to be a teacher, in one of my classes (a psychology class), one of the students did a presentation on cultural bias in testing. To illustrate her point, she gave us an IQ test that was culturally biased. The questions all revolved around either black musicians of the 1960s or slang terminology associated with such musical genres.

For instance, there was this question:

The opposite of hip is:

a) circle
b) rectangle
c) oval
d) square

There was just one problem though: the four smartest people in the class by conventional measures were the four males in the class, and they also all happened to be very interested in music, and knew a lot about a diverse range of music. As such they vastly outperformed everyone else in the class. I got close to 100% on the test.

It was a stupid test anyway because IQ tests don't work that way, but the results were humorous to me.

I find it amusing that people who push the diversity line often actually know so little about other cultures. Can these people place the Sassenid Empire on a map of the world? Do they know in which part of the world one could find a Dravidian language? Which came first, the Ming, Qing or Yuan Dynasties, and which were founded by foreigners (and which foreigners)? Culturally or ethnically, what do Easter Island and Madagascar have in common? (Where are Easter Island and Madagascar, respectively?)
Caleb
 
Posts: 865
Joined: 20 Oct 2011, 04:44

Re: Left-wing teachers

Postby Michael » 08 May 2013, 16:45

I find it amusing that people who push the diversity line often actually know so little about other cultures. Can these people place the Sassenid Empire on a map of the world? Do they know in which part of the world one could find a Dravidian language? Which came first, the Ming, Qing or Yuan Dynasties, and which were founded by foreigners (and which foreigners)? Culturally or ethnically, what do Easter Island and Madagascar have in common? (Where are Easter Island and Madagascar, respectively?)


Good point Caleb. It recalls Dalrymple's point that the understanding by leftists of other cultures stops at the level of restaurants and cuisine.
Michael
 
Posts: 304
Joined: 01 Aug 2011, 21:28
Location: Canada

PreviousNext

Return to Education

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron

User Menu

Login Form

This site costs £100 per year to run and makes no money.

If you would like to make a small contribution to help pay for the web hosting, you can do so here.

Who is online

In total there is 1 user online :: 0 registered, 0 hidden and 1 guest (based on users active over the past 5 minutes)
Most users ever online was 175 on 12 Jan 2015, 18:23

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest
Copyright © Western Defence. All Rights Reserved.