A Conservative View

Praying that Donald Trump can save Americas freedoms!

Archive for the tag “english”

KILL AN AMERICAN – PART ONE

 

My friend, Don Dukes, sent me the following article and like myself, Don was born during the American depression in the 1930’s. This basic description of an American was closer aligned to life before the 1960’s and Lyndon Johnson’s acts to create another “Civil War”. Reading this gave me a rush of pride that was intended by the unnamed author who has failed to describe what has happened to American freedoms over my lifetime. This article is being posted on my blog today word for word.

As I am recovering from knee surgery it may be awhile before I complete a part two article. I will explain how the powerful in America are trying to eliminate the middle class which has neutered their power over the past 60 years. Folks, America has a political power war today that only the Americans can settle. It may be another Civil War and if you would like ro send me your comments, questions suggestions regarding America today, just comment on this posting or request my E address.   C Brewer

 

I did and you may missed this in the rush of news, but there was actually a report that someone in Pakistan had published in a newspaper, an offer of a reward to anyone who killed an American; any American.    

Australian Dentist Response

So an Australian dentist wrote an editorial the following day to let everyone know what an American is. So they would know when they found one. (Good one, mate!!!!)

‘An American is English, or French, or Italian, Irish, German, Spanish, Polish, Russian or Greek. An American may also be Canadian, Mexican, African, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Australian, Iranian, Asian, or Arab, or Pakistani or Afghan.

An American may also be a Comanche, Cherokee, Osage, Blackfoot, Navajo, Apache, Seminole or one of the many other tribes known as native Americans.

An American is Christian, or he could be Jewish, or Buddhist, or Muslim. In fact, there are more Muslims in America than in Afghanistan. The only difference is that in America they are free to worship as each of them chooses.

An American is also free to believe in no religion…… For that he will answer only to God, not to the government, or to armed thugs claiming to speak for the government and for God.

An American lives in the most prosperous land in the history of the world.

The root of that prosperity can be found in the Declaration of Independence, which recognizes the God-given right of each person to the pursuit of happiness.

An American is generous. Americans have helped out just about every other nation in the world in their time of need, never asking anything in return………

When Afghanistan was overrun by the Soviet army 20 years ago, Americans came with arms and supplies to enable the people to win back their country!

As of the morning of September 11, Americans had given more than any other nation to the poor in Afghanistan. The national symbol of America, The Statue of Liberty , welcomes your tired and your poor, the wretched refuse of your teeming shores, the homeless, tempest tossed. These, in fact, are the people who built America.

Some of them were working in the Twin Towers the morning of September 11, 2001 earning a better life for their families. It’s been told that the World Trade Center victims were from at least 30 different countries, cultures, and first languages, including those that aided and abetted the terrorists.

So you can try to kill an American if you must.. Hitler did. So did General Tojo , and Stalin , and Mao Tse-Tung, and other bloodthirsty tyrants in the world. But, in doing so you would just be killing yourself. Because Americans are not a particular people from a particular place. They are the embodiment of the human spirit of freedom. Everyone who holds to that spirit, everywhere, is an American.

Please keep this going! Pass this around the World  .Then pass it around again. It says it all, for all of us. Please do not just delete. Pass it on first!

Thanks!

*******************************************************

Clyde Brewer

WOW – A REAL BRAVE AMERICAN!

NEW HIGH SCHOOL PRINCIPAL!!

My friend, Dr. Peter Forrest sent me this article that I have decided to post on this blog as it will reach far more people than on my E address list. It is a crying shame that we have 535 Congress persons, none of whom, have the gonads to stand up and say these words or even share this with their own voters. I feel sure that this Principal will be fired as soon as the ACLU or the Colorado Democrats find a dupe to file suit. It would not surprise me to see Obama and Eric Holder charge him with racism.

I feel sure that one, or more, of my progressive readers will find some way to debunk this message and I really don’t care if it is fabricated. Someday enough Americans with a backbone will have the will to stop this destruction of our Republic and a President who ignores the laws and our Constitution. I just hope I live long enough to watch. If you hate America’s freedoms so much, just erase this and remove your name from following this blog.

C Brewer

Listen to the young people, F-this, F-that, nary anyone will step up and correct them- even with wife and kids in tow!

FINALLY – – Someone in the teaching profession had the courage to set the standards so badly needed NOW.

We watched high school Principal Dennis Prager of Colorado, along with Sara Palin and Tom Brokaw on TV a couple of weeks ago….what a dynamic, down to earth speaker. Even though Palin and Brokaw were also guest speakers they did little but nod and agree with him. This is the guy that should be running for President in 2016

A Speech Every American High School Principal Should Give.

By Dennis Prager .

To the students and faculty of our high school: I am your new principal, and honored to be so.

There is no greater calling than to teach young people. I would like to apprise you of some important changes coming to our school. I am making these changes because I am convinced that most of the ideas that have dominated public education in America have worked against you, against your teachers and against our country. 

First, this school will no longer honor race or ethnicity. I could not care less if your racial makeup is black, brown, red, yellow or white. I could not care less if your origins are African, Latin American, Asian or European, or if your ancestors arrived here on the Mayflower or on slave ships. The only identity I care about, the only one this school will recognize, is your individual identity — your character, your scholarship, your humanity. And the only national identity this school will care about is American.

This is an American public school, and American public schools were created to make better Americans. If you wish to affirm an ethnic, racial or religious identity through school, you will have to go elsewhere. We will end all ethnicity, race and non-American nationality-based celebrations. They undermine the motto of America, one of its three central values — E pluribus Unum, “from many, one.” And this school will be guided by America’s values.

This includes all after-school clubs. I will not authorize clubs that divide students based on any identities. This includes race, language, religion, sexual orientation or whatever else may become in vogue in a society divided by political correctness. Your clubs will be based on interests and passions, not blood, ethnic, racial or other physically defined ties. Those clubs just cultivate narcissism — an unhealthy preoccupation with the self — while the purpose of education is to get you to think beyond yourself. So we will have clubs that transport you to the wonders and glories of art, music, astronomy, languages you do not already speak, carpentry and more. If the only extracurricular activities you can imagine being interested in are those based on ethnic, racial or sexual identity, that means that little outside of yourself really interests you.

Second, I am uninterested in whether English is your native language. My only interest in terms of language is that you leave this school speaking and writing English as fluently as possible. The English language has united America’s citizens for over 200 years, and it will unite us at this school. It is one of the indispensable reasons this country of immigrants has always come to be one country. And if you leave this school without excellent English language skills, I would be remiss in my duty to ensure that you will be prepared to successfully compete in the American job market.

We will learn other languages here — it is deplorable that most Americans only speak English — but if you want classes taught in your native language rather than in English, this is not your school.

Third, because I regard learning as a sacred endeavor, everything in this school will reflect learning’s elevated status. This means, among other things, that you and your teachers will dress accordingly. Many people in our society dress more formally for Hollywood events than for church or school. These people have their priorities backward. Therefore, there will be a formal dress code at this school.

Fourth, no obscene language will be tolerated anywhere on this school’s property — whether in class, in the hallways or at athletic events. If you can’t speak without using the f -word, you can’t speak. By obscene language I mean the words banned by the Federal Communications Commission, plus epithets such as “Nigger,” even when used by one black student to address another black, or “bitch,” even when addressed by a girl to a girlfriend. It is my intent that by the time you leave this school, you will be among the few your age to instinctively distinguish between the elevated and the degraded, the holy and the obscene.

Fifth, we will end all self-esteem programs. In this school, self-esteem will be attained in only one way — the way people attained it until decided otherwise a generation ago — by earning it. One immediate consequence is that there will be one valedictorian, not eight.

Sixth, and last, I am reorienting the school toward academics and away from politics and propaganda. No more time will be devoted to scaring you about smoking and caffeine, or terrifying you about sexual harassment or global warming. No more semesters will be devoted to condom wearing and teaching you to regard sexual relations as only or primarily a health issue… There will be no more attempts to convince you that you are a victim because you are not white, or not male, or not heterosexual or not Christian. We will have failed if any one of you graduates this school and does not consider him or herself inordinately fortunate — to be alive and to be an American.

Now, please stand and join me in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag of our country. As many of you do not know the words, your teachers will hand them out to you.

Thanks again Peter

NEW HIGH SCHOOL PRINCIPAL!

This is the guy who should be running for President in 2016!

A Speech Every American High School Principal Should Give.

By Dennis Prager.

To the students and faculty of our high school:

I am your new principal, and honored to be so.

There is no greater calling than to teach young people.

I would like to apprise you of some important changes coming to our school. I am making these changes because I am convinced that most of the ideas that have dominated public education in America have worked against you, against your teachers and against our country.

First, this school will no longer honor race or ethnicity.

I could not care less if your racial makeup is black, brown, red, yellow or white. I could not care less if your origins are African, Latin American, Asian or European, or if your ancestors arrived here on the Mayflower or on slave ships. The only identity I care about, the only one this school will recognize, is your individual identity — your character, your scholarship, your humanity. And the only national identity this school will care about is American.

This is an American public school, and American public schools were created to make better Americans. If you wish to affirm an ethnic, racial or religious identity through school, you will have to go elsewhere. We will end all ethnicity, race and non-American nationality-based celebrations. They undermine the motto of America, one of its three central values – E pluribus Unum, “from many, one.” And this school will be guided by America’s values. This includes all after-school clubs. I will not authorize clubs that divide students based on any identities. This includes race, language, religion, sexual orientation or whatever else may become in vogue in a society divided by political correctness.

Your clubs will be based on interests and passions, not blood, ethnic, racial or other physically defined ties. Those clubs just cultivate narcissism — an unhealthy preoccupation with the self — while the purpose of education is to get you to think beyond yourself. So we will have clubs that transport you to the wonders and glories of art, music, astronomy, languages you do not already speak, carpentry and more. If the only extracurricular activities you can imagine being interested in are those based on ethnic, racial or sexual identity, that means that little outside of yourself really interests you.

Second, I am uninterested in whether English is your native language. My only interest in terms of language is that you leave this school speaking and writing English as fluently as possible. The English language has united America’s citizens for over 200 years, and it will unite us at this school. It is one of the indispensable reasons this country of immigrants has always come to be one country. And if you leave this school without excellent English language skills, I would be remiss in my duty to ensure that you will be prepared to successfully compete in the American job market. We will learn other languages here — it is deplorable that most Americans only speak English — if you want classes taught in your native language rather than in English, this is not your school.

Third, because I regard learning as a sacred endeavor, everything in this school will reflect learning’s elevated status. This means, among other things, that you and your teachers will dress accordingly. Many people in our society dress more formally for Hollywood events than for church or school. These people have their priorities backward. Therefore, there will be a formal dress code at this school.

Fourth, no obscene language will be tolerated anywhere on this school’s property — whether in class, in the hallways or at athletic events. If you can’t speak without using the f -word, you can’t speak. By obscene language I mean the words banned by the Federal Communications Commission, plus epithets such as “Nigger,” even when used by one black student to address another black, or “bitch,” even when addressed by a girl to a girlfriend. It is my intent that by the time you leave this school, you will be among the few your age to instinctively distinguish between the elevated and the degraded, the holy and the obscene.

Fifth, we will end all self-esteem programs. In this school, self-esteem will be attained in only one way — the way people attained it until decided otherwise a generation ago — by earning it. One immediate consequence is that there will be ONE valedictorian, not eight.

Sixth, and last, I am reorienting the school toward academics and away from politics and propaganda. No more time will be devoted to scaring you about smoking and caffeine, or terrifying you about sexual harassment or global warming. No more semesters will be devoted to condom wearing and teaching you to regard sexual relations as only or primarily a health issue… There will be no more attempts to convince you that you are a victim because you are not white, or not male, or not heterosexual or not Christian. We will have failed if any one of you graduates this school and does not consider him or herself inordinately fortunate — to be alive and to be an American.

Now, please stand and join me in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag of our country. As many of you do not know the words, your teachers will hand them out to you.

My good friend Bob McGraw shared this with me. I hope you will share this with every American you know. This was how I was raised and joining the US Navy at 17 prepared me to be a man. It is a shame that our President and Congress do not have a clue about leadership, ethics, truth, honesty or freedoms anymore. If anything is not politically important it deserves no attention in our government.

C Brewer

FACTS TO PONDER!

Why do we have so many Black racists in powerful leadership positions in America today? Why do they preach, promote, infer and insist on violence as the way to live? Why do they feel that anyone owes them anything other than the right to be free? They have had political control of the country for nearly five years and have divided the people worse than we experienced in the 1860’s. They appear to want a piece of flesh rather than a piece of bread. Why?

President Obama had a chance to unite Americans and improve our world image with his leadership. Instead he has alienated our people and is destroying our leadership position in world events. Why?

When the Black people unite at greater than 90 percent to admire, blindly follow and worship the current Black leaders in American we have more than an education difference. Watching leaders like Reverends Wright, Jackson and Sharpton spew racial hate, Congresspersons Maxine Waters, John Conyers, Sheila Jackson Lee, Elijah Cummings and Charles Rangel, to name a few, scream racists messages every time they open their mouth is sickening. Why?

We have some great Black American leaders like Dr. Ben Carson, Allen West, Senator Tim Scott, Governor Mia Love, WalterWilliams and Dr. Thomas Sewell and many more that should be hero’s to their people. They know how to prosper without violent dialog. They are Americans instead of antagonists but understand we are strong when we unite instead of divide the people. They are not only ignored, they are outcasts within their own race. Why?

Watching Obama use people like Eric Holder to openly ignore our laws when Blacks commit hate crimes then use race as a tool to prosecute Hispanics and Whites when they defend themselves is wrong. Why?

The recent George Zimmerman trial should be the warning signal that the Blacks hate the Hispanics as much as their leaders hate the Whites. They will continue this offensive to divide Americans until the people unite and stop this crap. It is time for the Hispanic people act like Americans, unite behind their new leaders and actually unite us all again.

I am deeply impressed with real leaders that have emerged like Senators Rubio and Cruz. Sadly the power base enjoyed by the Hispanic people is still mostly held by Democrats that are as out of touch with our Republic form of government as the Blacks they helped gain their current power. If they choose to ignore the chance to step up and support these new leaders, they will deserve to be second class humans trapped in a foreign country that they currently live in. I doubt that they will take advantage of this opportunity. Why?

Let me review some facts beyond the increases in numbers the Hispanics have made that reveal some gains they have made.

Take a look at the 113th Congress currently so admired by some eleven percent of the people. The Blacks have forty-four elected officials represented by one Senator, Tim Scott, a Republican and forty-three members of the House that are 100% Democrats. The Hispanics have 38 elected officials represented by three Senators, Republicans Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz and one Democrat, Robert Menendez along with thirty-four members in the House. The major difference is that five of the House members are Republicans. The voters somewhere are waking up and realizing that “Involuntary Slavery” I recently defined is not a way of life for any American.

My mission with this article is a question to all Hispanic people, citizens or not, to think hard how you can improve your life and the opportunities of your children if you want to? Step number one is speak English and become an American. I spent a lot of my life working with, training and consulting with businesses in Mexico. I had a timeshare for over 25 years in Puerto Vallarta and I found the people more than deserving to be free from government oppression and control. Please help us remove the fear of growing government oppression and control from our Constitutional freedoms. The direction President Obama is shoving down our throats will be far worse than life in Mexico or Central America. Our current leaders are hell-bent on creating more government regulatory interference in our lives than anywhere in the Western Hemisphere.

C Brewer

IMMIGRATION REFORM

As a boy I witnessed far too many young Americans die defending my freedom during WW II.

I served in the US Navy and had many classmates wounded and killed in Korea.

I watched as my brother served and many good friends died in Vietnam.

No American ever served in the military or gave their life to protect the Mexican Flag.

Recently here in Texas , a student raised a Mexican flag on a school flag pole; another student took it down.

Guess who was punished? The student who took it down.

School children in California were sent home this year on Cinco de Mayo because they wore T-shirts with the American flag printed on them.

Have you had enough? Read the following, then do something.

Every American needs to stand up for America. We’ve bent over to appease the America-haters long enough…

I’m taking a stand, will you?

I’m proudly standing up because the hundreds of thousands who lost legs or died fighting in wars for this country, can’t stand up.

Shame on anyone who tries to make this a racist message…

Let me make this perfectly clear! 

THIS IS MY COUNTRY!

Because I make this statement “DOES NOT” mean I’m against immigration! 

I WELCOME ALL FREEDOM LOVING PEOPLE, IF.

They just follow the rules and the laws to come here legally.

1. Get a sponsor!

2. Pay for a place to live!

3. Get a job!

4. Live by the Rules!

5. Pay YOUR Taxes!

6. Learn to speak English.

7. Don’t demand that we hand over our lifetime savings to provide you with welfare.

IF YOU DISAGREE LIKE THE MORONS IN CONGRESS YOU’RE ALSO PART OF THE PROBLEM! WE DID NOT INVITE OR DRAG THESE PEOPLE OR THEIR CHILDREN HERE. 

WAKE UP AMERICA!

CB

FREEDOM- A “RIGHT” ALL AMERICANS SHOULD UNDERSTAND

I received the following message from a friend and decided to post it on my blog. It would be nice if everyone that reads this would pass it on to every American alive. I lost my only brother as a result of this war. I wish that he and all of the other American military who suffered the anguish and humiliation during this sad period in our history could see that we did accomplish something wonderful. It would be nice to see all Americans understand what freedom really means and the suffering it takes to protect our way of life. Unfortunately the leadership in America today is slowly destroying the dreams of those who created the most successful Republic in all of mans history.  C Brewer

 

HOW ONE IMMIGRANT APPRECIATES AMERICA

Last year the town of Prescott Valley, AZ, hosted a Freedom Rally. Quang Nguyen was asked to speak on his experience of coming to America and what it means.  He spoke the following in dedication to all Vietnam Veterans. Most will enjoy what he had to say.

 

SPEECH

“35 years ago, if you were to tell me that I am going to stand up here speaking to a couple thousand patriots, in English, I’d laugh at you.  Man, every morning I wake up thanking God for putting me and my family in the greatest country on earth….. America.

I just want you all to know that the American dream does exist and I am living the American dream.  I was asked to speak to you about my experience as a first generation Vietnamese- American, but I’d rather speak to you as an American.

If you hadn’t noticed, I am not white and I feel pretty comfortable with my people.

I am a proud US citizen and here is my proof:  It took me 8 years to get it, waiting in endless lines, but I got it and I am very proud of it.

I still remember the images of the Tet offensive in 1968, I was six years old.  Now you might want to question how a 6-year-old boy could remember anything.  Trust me, those images can never be erased.  I can’t even imagine what it was like for young American soldiers, 10,000 miles away from home, fighting on my behalf.

35 years ago, I left South Vietnam for political asylum.  The war had ended.  At the age of 13, I left with the understanding that I may or may not ever get to see my siblings or parents again.  I was one of the first lucky 100,000 Vietnamese allowed to come to the US.  Somehow, my family and I were reunited 5 months later, amazingly, in California.  It was a miracle from God.

If you haven’t heard lately that this is the greatest country on earth, I am telling you that right now.  It was the freedom and the opportunities presented to me that put me here with all of you tonight.  I also remember the barriers that I had to overcome every step of the way.  My high school counselor told me that I cannot make it to college due to my poor communication skills.  I proved him wrong.  I finished college.  You see, all you have to do is to give this little boy an opportunity and encourage him to take and run with it.  Well, I took the opportunity and here I am.

This person standing tonight in front of you could not exist under a socialist/communist environment.  By the way, if you think socialism is the way to go, I am sure many people here will chip in to get you a one-way ticket out of here.  And if you didn’t know, the only difference between socialism and communism is an AK-47 aimed at your head.  That was my experience.

In 1982, I stood with a thousand new immigrants, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and listening to the National Anthem for the first time as an American.  To this day, I can’t remember anything sweeter and more patriotic than that moment in my life.

Fast forwarding, somehow I finished high school, finished college, and like any other goofball 21 year old kid, I was having a great time with my life.  I had a nice job and a nice apartment in Southern California.  In someway and somehow, I had forgotten how I got here and why I was here.

One day I was at a gas station, I saw a veteran pumping gas on the other side of the island.  I don’t know what made me do it, but I walked over and asked if he had served in Vietnam.  He smiled and said yes.  I shook and held his hand.  The grown man began to well up.  I walked away as fast as I could and at that very moment, I was emotionally rocked.  This was a profound moment in my life.  I knew something had to change in my life.  It was time for me to learn how to be a good citizen.  It was time for me to give back.

You see, America is not a place on the map.  It isn’t a physical location.  It is an ideal, a concept.  And if you are an American, you must understand the concept, you must buy into this concept, and most importantly, you have to fight and defend this concept.  This is about Freedom and NOT free stuff.  And that is why I am standing up here.

Brothers and sisters, to be a real American, the very least you must do is to learn English and understand it well.  In my humble opinion, you cannot be a faithful patriotic citizen if you can’t speak the language of the country you live in.  Take this document of 46 pages – last I looked on the Internet, there wasn’t a Vietnamese translation of the US Constitution. It took me a long time to get to the point of being able to converse and until this day, I still struggle to come up with the right words.  It’s not easy, but if it’s too easy, it’s not worth doing.

Before I knew this 46-page document, I learned of the 500,000 Americans who fought for this little boy.  I learned of the 58,000 names inscribed on the black wall at the Vietnam Memorial.  You are my heroes.  You are my founders.

At this time, I would like to ask all the Vietnam veterans to please stand.  I thank you for my life.  I thank you for your sacrifices, and I thank you for giving me the freedom and liberty I have today.  I now ask all veterans, firefighters, and police officers, to please stand.  On behalf of all first generation immigrants, I thank you for your services and may God bless you all”.

 

QUANG NGUYEN

Please take note he never used the term Vietnamese American. If all other naturalized citizens would just become “Americans” the resentment would subside. If they continue to demand that we change our history and our way of life we will never have harmony. If they can’t adjust then why did they come other than to overthrow our government?    C. Brewer

EDUCATION TEXAS- HOW TO WASTE MORE MONEY- A SECOND LOOK!

The following article was posted on this site on May 22, 2011. As predicted the STAAR program has been another dismal failure wasting billions of dollars everyone knew would not work. Texas attempt to force teachers to just make sure students can pass a test will never work and our Governor and State Education Committee all hopefully know that by now. We need teachers to teach basic education like I had in the 1030/40’s.

When will educators and politicians admit that every child is not equipped to be a doctor, lawyer or rocket scientists? Likely never, as we will now look for a new magic test that will also fail. We need occupational education for those children that will be welders, technicians, salesperson, beauty operators, etc. Although some programs exist they are funded by outside donations except our prison system schools. If we train some of these young people, trades they may not have to go to prison to get qualified? If interested I posted other articles about this during the same time frame you can find searching my site

Except for some minor changes in the first paragraph the following was posted some 19 months ago.

The new STAAR testing program will be just another untested wild goose chase. After wasting millions on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) testing program some Texas school districts have captured the costs for TAKS. Based on the factual costs the STAAR program will double the costs of TAKS. Taxpayers will face increased waste of state funds and no improved knowledge for the majority of students.

An article by Hawley Kappes in The Daily News on May 15 revealed some significant facts I wish to share. Teachers now have to teach to pass a test or face possible discipline. With all of the 1265 Texas school districts facing budget cuts, the Clear Creek ISD decided to review all expenditures including the TAKS costs.

The review revealed that $1.3 million costs associated with TAKS, which includes paying substitute teachers who support administering the test, tutoring for students who need additional help and supplies — including sharpened pencils, highlighters, dictionaries and graphing calculators.

This included the salaries of testing coordinators at each high school and deans of instruction at all campuses that ensure teachers are following curriculum guidelines.

Texas provides no funding to cover these costs.

Clear Creek ISD did not capture all cost because some testing aspects were difficult to quantify. Assistant principals at elementary and intermediate schools are responsible for implementing state assessments on their campuses, and it was difficult to assign a dollar amount for the time associated with that work.

The Dickinson ISD reported that the TAKS costs of about $430,000 this year. This includes the salaries of the district’s director of assessment, evaluation and compliance and the testing coordinator at Dickinson High School, plus 30 percent of the salary for an assistant principal at each campus.

The district spends $50,000 a year on extra tutoring for students who need it.

Testing protocol has strict rules that govern the handling of test materials from the time school districts receive the packets until the items are shipped off after testing is finished. Staff members spend time counting test booklets, ensuring no seals have been prematurely broken, keeping the tests locked after hours and training for hypothetical situations that could occur in the testing environment.

Substitutes are needed on testing days to monitor bathrooms and hallways and watch over students if a teacher needs to step out of the classroom. Counselors and testing coordinators spend time identifying if certain students require special test environments, including linguistically assisted testing, which requires a teacher to read questions for students. Most preparation for assessments happens after hours during nights and weekends.

Goodbye TAKS, Hello STAAR

Next year, the state will implement a new State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR, which will replace the TAKS as a measure of student performance.

Changes include a four-hour limit on testing periods, expanded accommodations for students with dyslexia and makeup days for all tests. Legislators in Austin still are hashing out details of the STAAR, but the tests will include 12 end-of-course assessments mandated by Senate Bill 1031 in 2007 and new assessments for grades three through eight as required by House Bill 3 in 2009.

STAAR is more individualized to what classes a high school student is taking that year. A student’s course load, instead of his grade level, will determine which tests he will take. The test will measure more of the thinking involved and ability to do more processing of information and divergent thinking.

School district officials are grappling with the increased test days the new state assessment will require. Total testing days will increase from 25 under TAKS to 45 under STAAR.

Freshmen this year were tested for reading and math, but next year will take assessments in English, math, social studies and science. Major curriculum revisions will finish this summer to adjust for the more specialized end-of-course exams. New textbooks also will be necessary for school districts.

Some think it would be better to test students in alternating grades or perhaps staggering subjects for different grades at the elementary level. The amount of testing that’s going to happen is encroaching so much on teachers instruction time with students they do not have time to go that deep into curriculum before the test comes.

A Breakdown of Clear Creek ISD’s TAKS Costs were; High school testing coordinator salaries — $216,310; Deans of instruction — $357,066; Substitutes to help administer the tests — $120,000; Target assistance tutoring — $500,000; Graphing calculators — $83,468; Supplies — $25,000 Dictionaries — $1,600.

STAAR is also unfunded, untested and with budget cuts another method for the state to intensify teacher responsibilities to approach the level of “Kamikaze Pilots.” No wonder Texas has some 60 vacancies for K-12 Superintendents. I recommend that many more update their resumes or look into retirement packages.

The Texas Education Agency and the legislature do not have a clue on the damage and waste they have enacted by law. If someone would capture the costs for all 1265 Texas school districts, it might attract attention for the voters to care? The largest Texas school district, Windom, is exempted from TAKS and STAAR as it covers the Texas prison system.   CB

EDUCATION TEXAS- A LOCAL ADVANTAGE?

For those who have children or grand children in K-12 schools, let me encourage you to find out if your if this described advantage exist where you live. It is obvious to me that the Texas Legislature uses politics to provide educational variables to pacify themselves and the appointed and elected Boards to favor certain school districts. Nationally the US Department of Education uses 90% of their billions to provide social justice for the minorities and aliens. Just read the itemized 92 page budget if you doubt my words. If the states and the federal governments would admit that a local program like the one described below would find the right path for aligning children’s capability with a mixture of academics and vocational programs necessary to prepare them for their place in society. We may all be created equally but we all do not fit into society equally. It is time for the people to stop this waste of money and demand change. CB

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“First let me apologize to Dr. Lana Comeaux, whose name I misspelled in the last article. I have lived in Sabine county, very close to Louisiana, for nearly 20 years. When Dr. Pearson suggested I meet Ms. Como, my age drove me to associate the name to Perry when I took notes.”

I had the pleasure to visit with Dr. Comeaux on Monday April 11th at the Sabine Area Career Center in Pineland, Texas. I had no conception of what a great advantage was available to the citizens of Sabine and San Augustine counties.

The center has several specialized classrooms to conduct classes and a welding facility with modern equipment and seven individually vented weld stations. The computer classroom is well equipped and is available for students use in searching the internet for assignments. Classrooms are available to permit students to participate and interact by video with some specialty classes being conducted at Angelina College in Lufkin.

The Career Center also has a large meeting room that is available for community meetings and special events. Currently this room is utilized for programs like Dance, Taekwondo, Photography, Flower Arranging and Computer classes. Another program available is support meetings for parents with autistic children.

In addition to the Angelina campus, some of the classes are conducted at Hemphill ISD and Jasper ISD where science labs or other specialty facilities exist. I have another meeting scheduled this April 21st with Dr. Pearson and Dr. Comeaux to view the Hemphill laboratories and other specialized facilities.

Some of the two year college credit courses are; English, World History, US History, Texas History, Sociology, Algebra, Chemistry, Biology etc. The Career Center also provides Community Service Programs that include; Phlebotomy, Certified Nurse Asst., Medical Asst., GED Preparation, and Welding. Future planning includes courses for EMT, LVN, Police and Fire careers, Automotive and A/C & Repair.

All of the programs are available to students at Hemphill, West Sabine, Brookland, Broadus and San Augustine school districts.

Citizens of the area are fortunate to have this facility. It does require the five school districts to work closely with Dr. Comeaux. This includes a student’s needs assessment and scheduling classes to permit the students to be able to take the Angelina programs. Each of the five school districts provide either the superintendent or a principal to serve on the on the Board of Directors.

The program is totally funded by grants, donations and private foundations. Currently the Beaumont and TLL Foundations provide significant funding for the Center. No state or local taxes are appropriated for the center. This is an unusual advantage for both the students and parents of Sabine and San Augustine counties.

A student can take up to twenty classes which can result in roughly 60 credit hours if they take full advantage of the program. Students are eligible after their sophomore year to start in that summer and can take 2 courses each semester. There are two summer sessions in addition to the regular fall and spring school semesters. This means that if a student is academically driven, they can start their college or university education as a junior. For those families with funding limitations, a high school student can obtain an Associate’s Degree in the summer after they graduate from high school.

Every parent should be aware of this advantage. The economic distress and the mystery of what the politicians in Austin and Washington D.C. will dream up next, demands that we prepare today’s students who will have to pay for the debacle.

Clyde Brewer

EDUCATION TEXAS-SHOULD TESTING BE MORE IMPORTANT THAN TEACHING?

 

 

The good news for teachers is that the ill-fated Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) testing will be given a well deserved funeral in 2011. This was an unfunded mandate that never deserved a breath and actually replaced valuable teacher time. Teachers were forced to teach for the test rather than teach to have students gain knowledge.

The bad news is our illustrious Legislature mandated 12 end-of–course assessments for high school students in Senate Bill 1031 in 2007 and created new graduation requirements for an additional year of math and science plus grade 3-8 assessments in House Bill 3 in 2009. This resulted in a new State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness or STAAR test to replace TAKS. Wow!

So STAAR grades 3-8 test will include:

Grade 3 Reading and Math

Grade 4 Reading, Math and Writing

Grade 5 Reading, Math and Science

Grade 6 Reading and Math

Grade 7 Reading, Math and Writing

Grade 8 Reading, Math, Science and Social Studies.

STAAR High School tests will include:

English I, English II, English III, Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, World Geography, World History, and United States History. 

In plain language the new tests will be used beginning in the 2011-2012 school year. Students entering ninth grade next year will be the first who must meet the extra course in math and science and be subjected to the end-of-course testing requirements. By the way they must also pass their classes, in order to earn a diploma.

Another tidbit you have to search for is what does all of this STAAR surprise cost? A concerned citizen, using the open record law found the answer. The STAAR testing program has been awarded to a for-profit company in the amount of $468,382,617.00 that will cover the period from 2010-2015.

By the way, there has been no additional training developed for the K-12 administrators or teachers and they face not having textbooks or any preparatory classes to prepare students for the additional science/math requirements. Like the TAKS program teachers will be forced to teach to the STAAR requirements. Any failure of students to pass the tests will be blamed on the teachers like happened when TAKS produced negative results.

If our Superintendents and teachers were allowed to demand discipline there would be no need for a testing program. It is criminal that teachers must have liability insurance to protect their personal property. No wonder we have a broken system. It should be no surprise that our Texas education system in our prisons is highly successful, why? There is no discipline problem with prisoners. Why can’t educators accept that until teachers and administrators are allowed to demand discipline, wasting money with testing is irresponsible! They do not care.

Texas current academic performance measured with all states has diminished over the past few years and we are planning to slash the state funding as much as 20%. It appears that someone in Austin is back to smoking weeds. Only dreamers like the State Board of Education and the legislature can develop these pie-in-the-sky grandiose programs. They believe that they can cut spending and snap their fingers and all Texas students will be ready for the universities and we will have thousands of Academics and Rocket Scientists, available to find unemployment?

When will someone in America wake up and admit that every child will not attend a college or university. We spend billions year after year preparing all children to go to a place of higher learning, knowing full well most will never go.

America is the only industrialized nation on the planet that has little or no trades education for those who will eventually be policemen, firefighters, plumbers, carpenters, cosmetologists, small business owners, etc. Maybe if we could have courses to prepare some students for a political future, we could reduce the costs of our Congress and Legislatures. Most politicians are lawyers and they could be free to return to doing the legal work they were educated to perform. The way they have screwed up America, I suspect some would have to be re-educated on how to chase ambulances again!

For those who read my article on education in the Texas prisons, providing free trades education in high school might help the ones who are lost or drop out of school. Knowledge that would help them find jobs might keep some from joining gangs, selling drugs or other criminal activity. They would fit into society at graduation. Now, if they desire to learn a trade after high school, it is not free and the ones who can’t afford higher education certainly can’t afford the trade school fees.

The only way to get a free education today without grants is to go to prison. It would be nice if the U.S. Department of Education could provide PELL grants for a trade’s education initiative. They spend billions annually to send the under-privileged and the ill-prepared to a college or university with little or no hope that the majority will graduate. They try to make the shoe fit even if it is impossible and accomplish a ten percent result. If we would evaluate every child after the eighth grade and have two courses of opportunity, trades versus academics, we would have the right shoe on the right foot.

What I have outlined is nothing more than common sense. Sadly the academics and politicians that design and fund education were never subjected to a course in common sense and most have never had to make a payroll every week. The really sad part is they really do not care about our children as they just want power and prestige.

For those who wish to keep up with education in Texas, you will find a lot of information on the Texas Education Agency website. I enjoy reading material at TexasISD.com which is the Homepage for Texas School Officials.

Clyde Brewer

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