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The public school system: Usually a twelve year sentence of mind control.

Crushing creativity, smashing individualism, encouraging collectivism and compromise, destroying the exercise of intellectual inquiry, twisting it instead into meek subservience to authority." Walter Karp The image shown tells much with respect to the failings of the education system we have now, but it does not tell the whole story. We must learn to be both creative AND analytical to be complete beings. Beginning in the 1970s, the elegance of science and mathematics was sacrificed on the altar of creativity. Fortunately, in a few households, the children were benefitting from education outside the school, from parents and mentors, which allowed them to overcome the shortcomings of the new curriculum. These are the teachers of today, who, for the most part, learned that education does not happen only in the classroom, but throughout the waking life of the individual. As we progressed into the 1990s, it was fast becoming apparent that student performance in critical thinking had fallen off sharply in large part, because we had curtailed our efforts to teach analytical thought. We were, by then, no longer the intellectual powerhouse whos Yankee Ingenuity had offered so much to our own culture, and to the rest of the world. Rather than a frank analysis and a coherent plan to broaden the curricula once more, we, instead, chose the path of endless standardized tests, and tied funding of our schools to performance. That, of necessity, led to teaching for the test with creative thought now sacrificed on the altar of conformity, and creating a crop of rote-memorizing drones, influenced by any input offered by someone in perceived authority.

This did not stifle all childrens thought only those who did not receive the balanced education between the school and the home that had once been a part of the fabric of American Culture and that remains so elsewhere, in the Nations whose students now surpass our own. The salvation of our Nation lies within that sentence, as you will find below. We have failed our youth, not once, but twice, for now a further attack on the school systems again, tied to the almighty dollar - has been birthed by those who would profit from the plantation philosophy we now see foisted on our inner cities a clear and directed effort to create a less-educated class, something anathema to any true believer in the values that made our Nation, while profiting on the backs of that same class two-fold once, in the skimming of the dollars from the public schools budgets, leaving them only enough to crank out more drones, and twice, because those same students become docile, obedient workers, who will take what the plantation owners offer. School budgets are pillaged of their riches by appointed advisors, whose self-serving, wasteful, and even criminal mishandling of their districts creates a convoluted mess that can only be resolved as was the Gordian knot. We need to untie the hands of both the teachers AND the students and give them all the tools needed to do the job. Failing that, we face degeneration into a dismal, almost feudal society. Thats not the America I was blessed to be born into, and I will not let that happen. Parents, educators, students - YOU must decide your own fate. You must shape your own destiny. Parents Mentor your children. Cause them to question what they do not readily understand. Give them the benefit of the education YOU received, and seek to fill the cracks in the foundation of your own learning. Participate in their upbringing to the fullest of your abilities, for that is your most important role. You are your childrens first teacherand will have the greatest and most lasting effect on who your child will become. Own that. Educators you are the product of mentoring by many, in both the classroom environment, and in your personal life. Being the beneficiary of so great a gift comes at a price a price you have already chosen to pay in your choice of career path. Becoming a teacher is not preparation for a jobit is so much more than that. I will admonish you, as I admonish my scouts TEACH, as YOU were taughtLEAD, as YOU were led. Take all the best of what youve learned, and synergize with those around you. Seek ever to raise the bar in your classroom. Teach BEYOND the test. Without you, our society WILL fail. Stand between your students and conformity. You are their greatest hope. Students refuse to accept a sub-standard education. DEMAND that you be given the tools to succeed, but also that you be given the tools to seek your own happiness in life. Liberty cannot be long sustained if you are willing to surrender your personal education through personal inaction, to become a slave. You have, at the end of the day, the hardest jobyou must weed through the mindless, all while growing your mind. Seek out those who would mentor you. Seek your own education, in school, in your libraries, even in observing the world around you. Ask questionsespecially if something just doesnt seem to make sense.

Question authority but do so respectfully. Hold the high ground. Accept no deflectiondemand answers. we are endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights that, among those, are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness Hold those words as significant in your life, and close to your heart. Therein lies salvation, of the individual, and of our society. FJL 2014