Texas Freedom Network’s Insider blog reports that embattled chairman Don McLeroy is working to create a panel of experts to review studies curricula. The experts he has proposed so far are all well-known cranks in academia, people who bring their axes to grind on the minds of innocent children.
- Rev. Peter Marshall of Peter Marshall Ministries in Massachusetts
- David Barton of the Christian, fundamentalist, Texas-based group WallBuilders (past vice chairman of the Texas Republican Party) (see “David Barton: Propaganda masquerading as history“)
- Allen Quist, of Bethany Lutheran College in Minnesota, a severe critic of the No Child Left Behind Act on the basis that it is too socialist, and an ardent campaigner against programs that promote high academic standards in schools
This panel is a bold insult to Texas’s community of economists, historians, and other practitioners of fields of social studies, not to mention educators. A more qualified panel of experts could be assembled in the coffee break rooms of the history departments at most of Texas’s lesser known state colleges and universities.
Why does Don McLeroy hate Texas so?
I’ve been buried in teaching, grading, planning and the other affairs of the life of a teacher, and had not paid much attention to the movement on this issue (“movement” because I cannot call it “progress”). My students passed the state tests by comfortable margins, more than 90% of them; this news from SBOE makes me despair even in the face of the news that our achievements are substantial in all categories.
The panel lacks knowledge and experience in economics, geography and history. The panel is grotesquely unbalanced — at least two of the panel members remind me of Ezra Taft Benson, who was Secretary of Agriculture for Dwight Eisenhower. When he resigned from that post, he complained that Eisenhower was too cozy with communism. Barton and Quist lean well to the right of Ezra Taft Benson. Quist has complained of socialist and Marxist leanings of Reagan administration education policy and policy makers.
Sitting here on the morning of May 27, 2009, I wonder what rot hath Don.