2013 SBC Annual Meeting

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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Dave Roberts » Thu Jun 13, 2013 7:09 am

Tim, I join in your resentment of the characterization of public education as the godless failing ground of secular culture. My wife spent several years as the Title I Parent Involvement Coordinator for a school system, and some of the finest Christians I have known were working in that system. I have also served as co-chair of an 18-month planning process for a school system in one VA county involving the work of more than 100 community people. After moving here, I served on and later chaired the Gifted Education Task Force in the public schools. I also served one church that had 28 teachers in it. My wife now works in the community college system where students often struggle to make it.

Sandy, your school seems the exception in that students can actually fail. The private school systems that I have dealt with operate on the mentality that the parents pay for their kids to pass. There was a great outcry a few years ago over a student who did not get to graduate with his class. Parents were up in arms because they were paying $4,000 plus a year for their children to graduate. After that incident, the headmistress retired before the fall term started because she did not have parental support.

The greatest problem I see for public schools comes from the Republican effort in VA (and many other states) to gut public education in favor or a voucher system. There are good private schools in some areas, particularly urban ones, but much of the country has few good alternatives to the public schools. I believe it is a part of my Christian civic duty to support public education. I'm sorry the SBC has bought the Republican voucher program and is so anti public education.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Sandy » Thu Jun 13, 2013 9:57 am

There are good people, and good Christians, in the public education system. And there are schools under the banner of "Christian" that reflect a sectarian perspective. But the idea that Christian schools are full of kids who are just getting VBS all day long and that the primary criteria in the curriculum is creationism rather than evolution is completely off base and false. The school organization with which our school is affiliated is ACSI, the largest such organization in the country with 24,000 member schools, and schools affiliated with ACSI cannot be, by the guidelines of their affiliation, "segregationist," they must have a fully developed and well rounded curriculum that meets or exceeds the standards of the public school system in their state, and they must adhere to a distinctively Christian educational philosophy. The kinds of Christian schools you guys are describing are few and far between.

The philosophical differences between Christian education and the public school system in America are vast and clearly distinguished. American public education is both secular and humanist in its basic educational philosophy, and that, by its very definition, denies the existence of a supreme being, much less a God who provided humans with a savior. The curriculum objectives are designed around that premise. The early influences on what is today's public educational philosophy were John Dewey and Horace Mann, not completely or openly atheist, but certainly heavily influenced by an atheist perspective. Since 2005, a result of the Bush Administration's "No Child Left Behind" initiative, the US Department of Education has pushed a set of educational standards known as "Common Core." This comes from UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, a group that is dedicated to neutralizing and eliminating what they consider negative cultural influences, and which pushes for one-world government. In spite of claims to the contrary, an end-run is being made around local school board control of curriculum. Common Core standards are enforced by "the test," the state based objective exams that students are required to pass in order to graduate from high school in most states.

I'm realizing that this discussion probably needs to be moved to another thread, so that it doesn't complicate the SBC Bashing that will happen here. :wink:
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby William Thornton » Thu Jun 13, 2013 9:59 am

Sandy, what does your school teach in regard to evolution/creationism, old/young earth?
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Sandy » Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:11 am

William Thornton wrote:Sandy, what does your school teach in regard to evolution/creationism, old/young earth?


We teach that God created the earth ex nihilo. We teach that theory is just theory, and that science more frequently proves hypotheses wrong than right. We outline the whole theory of evolution, insert the scientific evidence where it is applicable, make the students familiar with the points, show them how much of the theory itself still lacks scientific proof, how much of it has been altered from its original version as a result of science, and open the door to the possibility that, since there is still no DNA to link humans with animals, and there very likely will never be, that evolution will always be a theory. Then we teach several variations of Biblical creation, using Dr. Dembski's materials, along with the Institute for Creation Research.

I wouldn't bet that a kid from a public school could sit down and write a journal entry explaining his view of evolution, evidenced by the test scores public schools are turning out these days. And I doubt that the public schools teach that there are gaps in the theory of evolution, that many scientific discoveries have completely changed it in many ways, and that a good deal of it still lacks scientific evidence. That's true, but they don't teach that in the public school.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Bruce Gourley » Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:33 am

Sandy wrote:... The school organization with which our school is affiliated is ACSI, the largest such organization in the country with 24,000 member schools...


FYI, the Association of Christian Schools International is a right-wing Christian school organization associated with Gary North and the Christian Reconstruction movement, as well as the Institute for Creation Research.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Timothy Bonney » Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:41 am

Sandy wrote:There are good people, and good Christians, in the public education system. And there are schools under the banner of "Christian" that reflect a sectarian perspective. But the idea that Christian schools are full of kids who are just getting VBS all day long and that the primary criteria in the curriculum is creationism rather than evolution is completely off base and false.


Sandy while I'm sure the above is true for your school, you really cannot say that with any certainty about other private Christian schools. That is the problem. They each teach what they want to teach. I gave you two examples of private schools that I happen to know for a fact teach young earth creationism or that persons not in their little faith group aren't saved. Those were real examples. So deny all you want. Problems are out there.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby TrudyU » Thu Jun 13, 2013 11:28 am

Sandy writes "I wouldn't bet that a kid from a public school could sit down and write a journal entry explaining his view of evolution, evidenced by the test scores public schools are turning out these days. And I doubt that the public schools teach that there are gaps in the theory of evolution, that many scientific discoveries have completely changed it in many ways, and that a good deal of it still lacks scientific evidence."

Ed: Again a lot of verbiage and speculation with unsupported claims. Not very persuasive. As I have said before there are some good Christian schools, some poor christian schools and some that are so-so. Trudy substituted in all three when we where in Cincinnati. There are Very good Public schools, very poor ones and some that are so-so. Unfortunately most in the NY Capital area while excelling in academics, lack in moral education. BTW the two lesser Christian schools in Cinci taught about morality but it did not come across in the kids behavior, But at least at school the best of the three had well behaved courteous students.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Timothy Bonney » Thu Jun 13, 2013 11:35 am

TrudyU wrote: As I have said before there are some good Christian schools, some poor christian schools and some that are so-so.


Exactly Ed!
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Timothy Bonney » Thu Jun 13, 2013 11:36 am

As Sandy said, this should be another thread. But I personally would be more comfortable with a Christian School that is tied to a denomination because at least then I could look up what they believe and intend to teach. But I feel the same way about independent schools that I do about non-denominational churches. They are a mixed bag and you may not know what they actually believe until you are well into their system.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Sandy » Fri Jun 14, 2013 10:56 am

Timothy Bonney wrote:
Sandy wrote:There are good people, and good Christians, in the public education system. And there are schools under the banner of "Christian" that reflect a sectarian perspective. But the idea that Christian schools are full of kids who are just getting VBS all day long and that the primary criteria in the curriculum is creationism rather than evolution is completely off base and false.


Sandy while I'm sure the above is true for your school, you really cannot say that with any certainty about other private Christian schools. That is the problem. They each teach what they want to teach. I gave you two examples of private schools that I happen to know for a fact teach young earth creationism or that persons not in their little faith group aren't saved. Those were real examples. So deny all you want. Problems are out there.


Anecdotal examples are not characteristic of the whole system. There are three main organizations in the US which account for 90% of all the Christian schools in existence, ACSI (Association of Christian Schools International), CSI (Christian Schools International), and ACCS (Association of Classical Christian Schools). None of the schools you describe would qualify for membership in any of these organizations.

It is a fact that the academic standards of schools in all three of these organizations exceed those of the state and federal education departments, and the test scores on college entrance exams, achievement tests and objective based tests document this fact. It is a fact, documented by statistical analysis that all three groups provide, that the college acceptance rate, and college graduation rate of students who graduate from their schools is considerably higher than that of the public education system. It is also a fact that the public education system operates on a philosophy of education that cannot acknowledge the existence of God, and rests on standards and curriculum objectives which are based on the secular, humanist philosophy of individuals like John Dewey, Horace Mann, Edmund Burke and others. Peruse the curriculum objectives, student outcomes, required reading lists, and I think that even some of the more "progressive" elements of Christianity would object to some of the obvious anti-Christian bias it contains. I'd be willing to bet, Timothy, that I could find, in a quick, five minute perusal of a curriculum guide for a history class, several points that are even counter to United Methodist teaching and doctrine, and which would undermine and contradict things you preach from the pulpit (A local UMC pastor who is a big proponent of our school and I have discussed this, BTW). An educational system that cannot acknowledge even the minimal truth of a creator God can't teach truth. It is education in a vacuum. What kind of "real world" is that?

We make sure, as do most Christian schools, that our students are prepared in every subject area, and are ready for college and the challenges they will face there. Our curriculum goes well beyond just teaching one version of creation and human origin, and we tell the factual truth about evolution, something that public schools are forbidden from doing.

Statistically, while the church is losing upwards of 80% of its young people after college, and in recent years, researchers like Barna and Ed Stetzer at Lifeway have noted they are no longer drifting back like the baby boomers did. Why would they, when their faith is undermined daily in the public schools, and the colleges and universities confirm it? But there are several studies that indicate students who graduate from Christian schools are much less likely to abandon the church. In fact, they are much more likely to become lay leaders, vocational ministers and missionaries. The Catholics discovered this value of their school system about two generations ago, but Protestants are catching up, especially conservative evangelicals. The future of the church in America may very well rest on the shoulders of students in Christian schools.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Haruo » Fri Jun 14, 2013 11:58 am

Sandy wrote:[W]e tell the factual truth about evolution, something that public schools are forbidden from doing.
I'd be interested in learning some of this. Could you provide a snippet?
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The Anointed

Postby Stephen Fox » Fri Jun 14, 2013 12:11 pm

William and Sandy: Have either of you read Giberson and Stephens The Anointed. If not why not?

And William Rachel Held Evans will be the keynote speaker and breakout personality at the CBF fall gathering in Seneca S.C. this October. Hope to see you there as she will bring a boatload of thinking for you on everything from inerrancy to evolution, all in the backyard of Senator Lindsey Graham's hometown, major railroad intersection of the first half of the 20th Century.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby TrudyU » Fri Jun 14, 2013 1:46 pm

Sandy wrote:
Timothy Bonney wrote:
Sandy wrote:There are good people, and good Christians, in the public education system. And there are schools under the banner of "Christian" that reflect a sectarian perspective. But the idea that Christian schools are full of kids who are just getting VBS all day long and that the primary criteria in the curriculum is creationism rather than evolution is completely off base and false.


Sandy while I'm sure the above is true for your school, you really cannot say that with any certainty about other private Christian schools. That is the problem. They each teach what they want to teach. I gave you two examples of private schools that I happen to know for a fact teach young earth creationism or that persons not in their little faith group aren't saved. Those were real examples. So deny all you want. Problems are out there.


Anecdotal examples are not characteristic of the whole system. There are three main organizations in the US which account for 90% of all the Christian schools in existence, ACSI (Association of Christian Schools International), CSI (Christian Schools International), and ACCS (Association of Classical Christian Schools). None of the schools you describe would qualify for membership in any of these organizations.

It is a fact that the academic standards of schools in all three of these organizations exceed those of the state and federal education departments, and the test scores on college entrance exams, achievement tests and objective based tests document this fact. It is a fact, documented by statistical analysis that all three groups provide, that the college acceptance rate, and college graduation rate of students who graduate from their schools is considerably higher than that of the public education system. It is also a fact that the public education system operates on a philosophy of education that cannot acknowledge the existence of God, and rests on standards and curriculum objectives which are based on the secular, humanist philosophy of individuals like John Dewey, Horace Mann, Edmund Burke and others. Peruse the curriculum objectives, student outcomes, required reading lists, and I think that even some of the more "progressive" elements of Christianity would object to some of the obvious anti-Christian bias it contains. I'd be willing to bet, Timothy, that I could find, in a quick, five minute perusal of a curriculum guide for a history class, several points that are even counter to United Methodist teaching and doctrine, and which would undermine and contradict things you preach from the pulpit (A local UMC pastor who is a big proponent of our school and I have discussed this, BTW). An educational system that cannot acknowledge even the minimal truth of a creator God can't teach truth. It is education in a vacuum. What kind of "real world" is that?

We make sure, as do most Christian schools, that our students are prepared in every subject area, and are ready for college and the challenges they will face there. Our curriculum goes well beyond just teaching one version of creation and human origin, and we tell the factual truth about evolution, something that public schools are forbidden from doing.

Statistically, while the church is losing upwards of 80% of its young people after college, and in recent years, researchers like Barna and Ed Stetzer at Lifeway have noted they are no longer drifting back like the baby boomers did. Why would they, when their faith is undermined daily in the public schools, and the colleges and universities confirm it? But there are several studies that indicate students who graduate from Christian schools are much less likely to abandon the church. In fact, they are much more likely to become lay leaders, vocational ministers and missionaries. The Catholics discovered this value of their school system about two generations ago, but Protestants are catching up, especially conservative evangelicals. The future of the church in America may very well rest on the shoulders of students in Christian schools.


Ed: Sandy on what basis do you say to Tim, "None of the schools you describe would qualify for membership in any of these organizations." BTW,when you mention "90% of all the Christian schools in existence", how many schools does that represent?

And when you talk about making sure your students "are prepared in every subject area, and are ready for college and the challenges they will face there. " Are you assuming that "every student" who graduates from HS would benefit from going to college? If so I strongly disagree. Just yesterday K-Love, a Christian Radio network, reported that 54 % of all freshmen entering college this year will drop out after no more than two years of classwork. It is my studied opinion that many students herded off to college by well meaning Parents, School Administrators and Counselors would have much
greater success by attending a vocational school or apprenticeship program. In fact our church has opened its scholarship awards to those going into vocational school, as well as to those going to college. And then some students do quite well by going directly into secular employment. Many employers provide great OJT. And the Military is a valid option for some to start their post HS entry to the world of work.

And Sandy you are blowing smoke when you say "It is also a fact that the public education system operates on a philosophy of education that cannot acknowledge the existence of God,...". It is true in part that Secular education "rests on standards and curriculum objectives which are based on the secular, humanist philosophy of individuals like John Dewey, Horace Mann, Edmund Burke and others. " However Christians have also made significant contributions to public education.

As for the first statement we have a man in our ABCNYS Capital Area Association, a (former Teacher, School Principal, Superintendent of Schools, Lay Pastor and minor league Pro Baseball player) who still gets invited to talk about the Pro Baseball, Chaplaincy Program at various public schools Athletic award banquets. He will be filling the pulpit for Trudy one Sunday while we are conventioning. Perhaps I should say that the Pro Baseball Chaplaincy Program is interdenominational. Wally Likes to point out that it is even promoted by the Jewish owners of some clubs.

Also when Trudy and other pastors in the area present scholarships at the public school awards programs, they are introduced by their ecclesiastical title, name and Church Name. Where some public schools are limited, is in promoting one God over the many gods found in the prevailing culture.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Sandy » Fri Jun 14, 2013 3:51 pm

Ed Pettibone wrote:Ed: Sandy on what basis do you say to Tim, "None of the schools you describe would qualify for membership in any of these organizations." BTW,when you mention "90% of all the Christian schools in existence", how many schools does that represent?


On the basis of what he described. I know the standards for membership in each of those three organizations. They don't take schools that are sectarian, and that are not willing to accept their standards. The things Tim mentioned are not consistent with their standards.

ACSI has 23,000 member schools, 13,000 in the US. CSI has about 2,000 US members, and ACCS has about 800. That accounts for all but about 850 Christian schools.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby ET » Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:03 am

Timothy Bonney wrote:Sandy while I'm sure the above is true for your school, you really cannot say that with any certainty about other private Christian schools. That is the problem. They each teach what they want to teach. I gave you two examples of private schools that I happen to know for a fact teach young earth creationism or that persons not in their little faith group aren't saved. Those were real examples. So deny all you want. Problems are out there.

So basically what we have here is that there are some good, some so-so and some bad Christian schools.....just as can be said about public schools. Just as I had good, so-so and not-so-good teachers in my educational life, whether that was a public schools, private schools or even at college.

Are the "problems out there" in Christian schools any more noteworthy than the problems plaguing public schools? I don't think one can legitimately argue that they are.

Furthermore, times have changed. A government monopoly, for all practical purposes, is a terrible system to attempt to educate children. Educating children of the same age at the same pace because they are the same age is about as bureaucratic as things can get.

Seems to me in the end that if a person graduating from a Christian school is ill prepared to deal with the "real world" because of the "bad" education he received in a Christian school, then he's not really any worse off than the kid "graduating" from a public school who can't do much work above a 6th grade level. Some "bad" Christian school may teach their kids young-earth creationism or even that the world is flat, but they're still better off in the fact that almost of them can generally READ, so they at least have the potential to educate themselves at some point and change their mind. The same can't be said for the public schools here, particularly here in Memphis in what previously were the city schools.

Our two oldest were sent to a private school for high school. A good experience. Our youngest has been home schooled since the 3rd grade and is about to start her junior year of high school and will be taking some college-level classes at a local community college. I am just thankful that the Lord has blessed us with the means that we had multiple options from which to choose to educate our children. To top it off, she'll be an early guinea pig for Tennessee's new law that allows home schoolers to play sports for the public school in which they are zoned, so she'll get to play volleyball for, ironically enough, the high school from which I graduated.

And Dave, you say:
I believe it is a part of my Christian civic duty to support public education. I'm sorry the SBC has bought the Republican voucher program and is so anti public education.

I'm sympathetic to your statement, Dave. However, I have a hard time accepting what is basically a "one size fits all" educational philosophy, particularly in large schools systems where parental involvement or input is watered down by the size and bureaucrats are more in charge.

I chaff at the notion that government will dictate that I must educate my child, tax me for that education and then - unless I am rich enough - provide me with only one option by which my child can be educated. I don't know that vouchers are a fix for everything that ails the educational system, but I'm about to the point that I think politicians, particularly at the national level, bureaucrats and teachers' unions have so corrupted the system that I think a massive overhaul with far more local control with smaller school districts is a must.

One of the great ironies I find in a discussion such as this is that the ones most vocal in supporting a de facto monopoly in education are almost always the ones that support sending government out to do something about other monopolies with claims on how monopolies will harm the consumer and detrimental to the country, whether the old "Ma Bell", large banks, Microsoft or the "trusts" of the early 20th century. Yet when it comes to health care or education, they are most vocal in supporting a monopoly. A government monopoly is no less corrupting than a private-sector monopoly and both should be avoided.

Something needs to be done about education in this country, and fears of some Christians teaching their children about young-earth creationism or that the school might associate with a "right-wing Christian school organization" shouldn't be considered valid excuses for allowing more choice and parental control in education.

---------
NOTE: Both my parents were public school teachers. Three of my four grandparents were public school teachers. Two aunts are public school teachers. My wife was a special-ed/sign language teacher for 10 years, so I'm quite familiar with some of the issues in public education. My parents, both teaching public schools, paid to have my brother and I in private schools almost our entire educational life.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Haruo » Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:29 am

ET wrote:One of the great ironies I find in a discussion such as this is that the ones most vocal in supporting a de facto monopoly in education are almost always the ones that support sending government out to do something about other monopolies with claims on how monopolies will harm the consumer and detrimental to the country, whether the old "Ma Bell", large banks, Microsoft or the "trusts" of the early 20th century. Yet when it comes to health care or education, they are most vocal in supporting a monopoly. A government monopoly is no less corrupting than a private-sector monopoly and both should be avoided.

I disagree with you, for the most part, on the evils of all monopolies, but I think this is an interesting point worthy of a thread of its own (it's certainly far afield from "SBC Annual Meeting").
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby TrudyU » Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:57 am

Ed Pettibone on my wife's computer:

So ET does your support for vouchers extend to families who profess and practice forms of religion other other than Christianity, Such as Judaism, Islam and Wicca or whatever?
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Sandy » Sat Jun 15, 2013 12:23 pm

TrudyU wrote:Ed Pettibone on my wife's computer:

So ET does your support for vouchers extend to families who profess and practice forms of religion other other than Christianity, Such as Judaism, Islam and Wicca or whatever?


I can't answer for ET, but I believe that if the government is going to assume the responsibility for making certain that its citizens are compelled to send their children to school, they should not compel them to go to a school that they wouldn't choose on their own. You would not continue to do business with a company that provided sub-par service and a poor quality product. Why should you be compelled to send your children to a government school where the academics are mediocre, their safety is compromised, the operation is strictly budget driven and politically influenced, and you have no say in what happens to them in the classroom? The only way you can conclude that the curriculum and standards of the public education system are not "anti-Christian" is either not being aware of what is in the curriculum, or to not have much in the way of Christian belief and conviction yourself. So I believe that those individuals who hold a religious belief should be able to have their kids educated in an environment that supports their belief, not teaches against it, and they have paid tax money to provide it, so they should be able to direct where that goes.

As far as the quality of Christian schools go, we are dually accredited with ACSI and the Middle States association. Accrediting agencies are private, and Middle States has recognized that ACSI's accrediting process is more rigorous in assuring quality and standards than their own, so they will provide accreditation if you meet the ACSI standards. According to their data, 90% of the Christian schools that are MSACS accredited exceed the academic standards of the public schools. Why pay for mediocrity when you can get the best?
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby TrudyU » Sat Jun 15, 2013 4:36 pm

Ed: To Sandy; There are undoubtedly poor public school, I worked in one, charged with "keeping order". There are also some fine public schools. And My kids attended some of the best. Largely because whenever our kids where in school and I was offered a job promotion, my acceptance of said job depended in large part on the studied reputation of the schools beyond the athletic department. My parents had done the same for me. And yes I know that not everyone has that luxury. But in all honesty my experience has led me to believe that most parents pay little attention to what is going on in the schools their kids attend.

And I do disagree with your claim that "The only way you can conclude that the curriculum and standards of the public education system are not 'anti-Christian' is either not being aware of what is in the curriculum, or to not have much in the way of Christian belief and conviction yourself. The lack of bible classes and prayer is not in and of itself anti christian. in some cases it may be anti religion. But I am satisfied with schools leaving religious instruction to parents and their chosen church.

I will agree that in a large part Christian school education has come a long way in he past thirty years. But for those where that is true, others are still spoon feeding kids with Christian pablum.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Timothy Bonney » Sat Jun 15, 2013 4:46 pm

Sandy wrote: The only way you can conclude that the curriculum and standards of the public education system are not "anti-Christian" is either not being aware of what is in the curriculum, or to not have much in the way of Christian belief and conviction yourself.


Sandy you just crossed the line from argument into insult. The above is garbage. "Either believe what I believe about public schools or you are either ignorant or you aren't much of a Christian."

That is what the above sentence is saying. :horse:
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Dave Roberts » Sat Jun 15, 2013 8:26 pm

ET wrote:
And Dave, you say:
I believe it is a part of my Christian civic duty to support public education. I'm sorry the SBC has bought the Republican voucher program and is so anti public education.

I'm sympathetic to your statement, Dave. However, I have a hard time accepting what is basically a "one size fits all" educational philosophy, particularly in large schools systems where parental involvement or input is watered down by the size and bureaucrats are more in charge.

I chaff at the notion that government will dictate that I must educate my child, tax me for that education and then - unless I am rich enough - provide me with only one option by which my child can be educated. I don't know that vouchers are a fix for everything that ails the educational system, but I'm about to the point that I think politicians, particularly at the national level, bureaucrats and teachers' unions have so corrupted the system that I think a massive overhaul with far more local control with smaller school districts is a must.

One of the great ironies I find in a discussion such as this is that the ones most vocal in supporting a de facto monopoly in education are almost always the ones that support sending government out to do something about other monopolies with claims on how monopolies will harm the consumer and detrimental to the country, whether the old "Ma Bell", large banks, Microsoft or the "trusts" of the early 20th century. Yet when it comes to health care or education, they are most vocal in supporting a monopoly. A government monopoly is no less corrupting than a private-sector monopoly and both should be avoided.



ET, I read your post with interest, but I believe you missed my point. There are certainly situations where the public schools are failing and parents have to supplement what is offered in order for their children to get a well-rounded and adequate education. The problems I see in education are not the exaggerated influences of teachers' unions and bureaucratic efforts that drain away the chances for children to get an education. I see massive inequalities where rich school districts in a state have double the "per-pupil expenditure" that poorer systems have. I also see minorities being abandoned to the public schools while those who can afford to send their children to private schools often do so. My sense of Christian duty is not to some "one size fits all" system that poorly serves or regiments education for all children. It is certainly not to all the varied philosophies that underlie the approaches to education. It is rather my concern to fulfill the teachings of Jesus "Inasmuch as you have done it for the least of these, you did it to me." I see Christ in the underprivileged children abandoned in public education while Christians can rush to private and home-schooling experiences all the while bellyaching about being taxed to support schools their kids don't attend and complaining that they can't get money from the government for their school choices.

Efforts to make teachers accountable through state testing and "No Child Left Behind" have destroyed creativity, individually tailored learning, and the freedom to experiment and improve on education. In the name of that mandate, we have schools simply teaching the state tests and little else. The constant attacks on teaching as a profession have caused many of the best teachers to change careers or take early retirement. My area is filled with young teachers who are getting forgiveness for some of their educational loans by teaching five years in an under-resourced school system.

By the way, you don't get much smaller than the school system I deal with regularly. It has one high school, one junior high, one school serving grades 5 and 6, and one elementary serving grades K through 4. A system that could serve three or four separate political jurisdictions would find it much easier to create an economy of scale, but that is forbidden by the state.

My other question is, "Why do advocates of private education always promote their schools with "put downs" of public education. just read back through these posts and see how many times "Christian education" is promoted with negative comments toward the public schools.
"God will never be less than He is and does not need to be more" (John Koessler)

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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Sandy » Sat Jun 15, 2013 9:33 pm

Timothy Bonney wrote:
Sandy wrote: The only way you can conclude that the curriculum and standards of the public education system are not "anti-Christian" is either not being aware of what is in the curriculum, or to not have much in the way of Christian belief and conviction yourself.


Sandy you just crossed the line from argument into insult. The above is garbage. "Either believe what I believe about public schools or you are either ignorant or you aren't much of a Christian."

That is what the above sentence is saying. :horse:


It isn't a matter of "believing what I believe" about public schools. Go, get hold of a curriculum guide for English, or US History, and then we'll talk.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Timothy Bonney » Sat Jun 15, 2013 10:04 pm

Sandy wrote:
It isn't a matter of "believing what I believe" about public schools. Go, get hold of a curriculum guide for English, or US History, and then we'll talk.


Sandy you aren't dealing with what I am saying. I know a lot of good Christians that work in the public schools who are strong Christians who have no objections to the standards based on their faith views. I don't have to read them to know that the conclusion that you have to view the standards as anti-Christian or you aren't a strong Christian is bogus. The assertion you are making is untrue on from the get go because I know Christians with strong Christian conviction who teach in the public school system and don't view the standards as non-Christian.

There are occasions when you fall into such narrow and sectarian views of Christianity that there is really nothing to talk about with you. This has just turned into one of those topics. You've made a bold faced statement that if someone doesn't agree with your interpretation of the standards as "anti-Christian" then they they lack in Christian conviction. Baloney.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby Sandy » Sat Jun 15, 2013 10:49 pm

And Timothy, I know plenty of strong Christians who teach in the public schools who don't even need a pen and a piece of paper to outline everything they encounter that is anti-Christian. There are hundreds of books on the subject. It's all documented. You can talk about a narrow view all you want to, you tend to have blinders on for a lot of things, and you don't want to see it.
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Re: 2013 SBC Annual Meeting

Postby TrudyU » Sun Jun 16, 2013 9:10 am

Sandy wrote:And Timothy, I know plenty of strong Christians who teach in the public schools who don't even need a pen and a piece of paper to outline everything they encounter that is anti-Christian. There are hundreds of books on the subject. It's all documented. You can talk about a narrow view all you want to, you tend to have blinders on for a lot of things, and you don't want to see it.


Ed: Sandy, I sincerely hope that students coming out of your school can present a cogent argument better than you do. When you toss out something like "There are hundreds of books on the subject. It's all documented." The natural reaction is to say, Name three, who are they published by, who wrote them, what is his or her experience in education and when where these books written . And when you say It's all documented, I have to ask How by whom,when and where?

I have no doubt there is some material on the subject, but I am not sure you are capable of deciding what is and what is not viable. This comes from reading hundreds of your post where you make claims, lacking support. I am not saying that you are always wrong but too often you fail to convince me.
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