Utterly Meaningless » 2007 » April

FIT FOR NEITHER MAN NOR BEAST (EXCEPT DUCKS)

Filed on April 15, 2007 at 2:10 pm under by dcobranchi

I’m a couple of miles from the first spot on this list.

WHEN IS A UNIFORM NOT A UNIFORM?

Filed on April 14, 2007 at 5:12 pm under by dcobranchi

When educrats say it isn’t:

Tosh pointed out the new structured dress code is not “school uniforms.”

…n Pants: Must be casual/dress pants of a solid color: khaki (beige/tan), navy blue. Pants must be sized to fit the student. Pants must be secured at the waist. Pants only are permitted to have two pockets in the front and two in the back. No cargo pockets are permitted.

The following types of pants are not permitted: cargo pants, baggy/skateboard pants, extra wide/extra full pants, military fatigues, sweat pants, wind pants or jeans/denim.

n Skirts: Must be of a solid color: khaki (beige/tan), navy blue. Can only be worn knee-length to ankle-length. No cargo pockets will be allowed.

n Shirts: Must be of a solid color and must have a collar. Golf shirts (short/long sleeve) and button-down dress shirts (short/long sleeve) must be worn. Burgundy, gold, white and navy shirts are permitted.

School district logos or a manufacturers’ logo no larger than 2 inches by 2 inches will be permitted.

n Sweatshirt/sweaters/turtlenecks: Crewneck sweatshirts and sweaters may be worn with an approved collared shirt underneath. Crewnecks and sweatshirts must be of a solid color. Sweatshirts may not be ripped or torn and must be sized to fit. Hooded sweatshirts are not permitted. A solid turtleneck will be permitted in an approved color under a sweater/sweatshirt. V-neck sweaters are permitted in one of the above mentioned approved colors as long as there is an approved shirt underneath.

n Shorts: Students will be permitted to wear solid color (khaki/navy blue) dress shorts sized to fit. Shorts can be worn no shorter than 2 inches above the knee. No cargo shorts will be permitted. Pleated or plain shorts with side pockets optional will be permitted.

n Belts: Must be solid color. No color preference and no emblems or logos will be permitted.

n Shoes: Some style of shoe/sneaker must be worn at all times. No open toes. Flip-flops (shoes without backs) are prohibited; Any footwear that poses a safety hazard is not permitted.

What is not allowed follows: Cargo pants, Henley shirts, Spandex pants, and hats, caps, headbands and bandanas.

The display of any undergarments will be strictly prohibited.

Also no chains, dog collars or spike bracelets/necklaces; no clothing or article deemed offensive, sexually suggestive, condoning violence, drug/alcohol/tobacco use, suicide or vulgar language; no unnatural hair coloring; no sunglasses may be worn except for medical reasons; no torn/ripped clothing, and no denim.

It’s all for the children, of course.

WORE ME DOWN

Filed on at 4:55 pm under by dcobranchi

I’ve been trying to ignore Cal Thomas’ latest (something I try to routinely do), but it keeps popping up on my screens. The ultraconservative Thomas makes the (all-too-common) mistake of lumping us with “conservatives.”

Why aren’t these keepers of the First Amendment flame coming to the defense of Don Imus? It’s because they have a double standard. Evangelical Christians, practicing Roman Catholics, politically conservative Republicans, home-schoolers and others who are not in favor among the liberal elite are frequent targets for the left. Anything may be said about them, and it frequently is. But let someone insult the left’s “protected classes,” be they African Americans, homosexuals or to a lesser extent, adherents to the religion of “global warming,” and they must be silenced and punished.

CHRIS REALLY WAS RIGHT

Filed on at 11:56 am under by dcobranchi

We lost to a dead blog. 🙂

Congrats, Spunky.

LOTD

Filed on at 4:02 am under by dcobranchi

84.6% of all statistics are made up:

Are ‘C’ average teachers qualified to teach children?

Vision 2015 indentified a number of areas that were to be addressed to improve the education of the children in Delaware. Noticeably absent from the list were teacher qualifications. For those who believe that a college degree in education qualifies the bearer to teach your child the following disturbing statistics may be of interest. Of the four-year colleges in the continental United States approximately: 445 colleges offer majors in early childhood education. 73.5 percent accept students with SAT scores of 500 or lower.

Would our children do better in school, and maybe even like school, if only our best and brightest high school students majored in education?

Why shouldn’t parents have a right to expect great teachers, we certainly pay enough. We want great doctors, lawyers and engineers. We know the education they have. We see their degrees on the walls of their offices. Don’t parents and children have a right to know which degrees (not certificates) their teachers have? Why not hang all the teachers’ degrees on the walls of their schools, to instill children’s pride in the accomplishments of their teachers?

Should the government be encouraging “C” students to major in education by offering financial aid?

Should “Vision 2015” concentrate on getting the best quality teachers from academically challenging colleges such as the University of Delaware?

R. M. Brisbin, Landenberg, Pa.

You can’t even score a 500 on the SAT. The minimum score is 600.

BONUS LOTD: Another crank writes my local rag:

Metro government is a de facto annexation

Has the editorial board at the Observer been asleep for the last several years? The Big Bang annexation was (and still is) as popular as the plague. And now you endorse merging city and county governments? That sure sounds like a de facto annexation of the rest of the county.

City residents can keep their police and sanitation departments. We folks out here beyond the city limits like it just fine the way it is.

Daryl Cobranchi
Gray’s Creek

WRONG EXCUSE

Filed on April 13, 2007 at 9:30 pm under by dcobranchi

The standard, when caught doing something bad, is to quit to spend more time with your family. Sex in the principal’s office is bad. Getting caught on video is really bad. Having that video mailed to parents probably sets some kind of record.

Leroy Coleman and Janet Lofton submitted their resignations after meeting with the district superintendent Thursday, said John Izzo, board attorney for the Sandridge Elementary School district, about 20 miles south of Chicago.

Izzo said that Coleman, the school’s principal since 2005, wrote that he was quitting for health reasons. He said Lofton wrote that she was stepping down immediately “due to the illness of a family member.”

Kim Grivakis, the mother of a 13-year-old girl and 11-year-old boy who attend the school, said she received a copy of the 2½-hour DVD in the mail Wednesday.

2 1/2 hours, though, is pretty impressive. Did he eat something special on that night? Garlic, perhaps?

YOUR TAX DOLLARS (NOT) AT WORK

Filed on at 3:41 pm under by dcobranchi

Shocking news– abstinence only education doesn’t work. Doesn’t mean we won’t continue to spend almost $200M/year pushing it, of course.

PHOTO FINISH

Filed on at 1:35 pm under by dcobranchi

Spunky and I are fighting it out for the “Current Events” blog, with a scant 1% separating us.

MOST LIKELY TO GO POSTAL

Filed on at 5:02 am under by dcobranchi

From CNN’s page this a.m.:

# Iraqi lawmakers gather after blast
# World Bank boss admits mistake on girlfriend’s job*
# White House admits e-mail screw up

The Bushies are doing a helluva job.

*That’s Paul Wolfowitz, Iraq war architect, who promoted his girlfriend and gave her a $60,000 per year raise.

A TINY VICTORY

Filed on at 12:29 am under by dcobranchi

The Census Bureau has thrown in the towel:

Another change from past censuses is the survey questions. Gone is the long form that asked detailed information. The new census form is seven basic questions followed by questions about whether the person owns or rents their residence.

Census officials say it should take about 10 minutes to complete the survey.

I’ll still refuse, as a matter of principle, to answer anything beyond the number of people who live in my home. Can’t mess with tradition.

OH! MY! GOD!

Filed on April 12, 2007 at 4:57 am under by dcobranchi

I was just checking to make sure my Whois info for cobranchi.com was accurate and I got curious who had registered cobranchi.net. You wouldn’t believe me if I didn’t provide the link.

Domain Name: COBRANCHI.NET

Registrant [190687]:
ELRN, Inc.
10 Shurs Lane
Philadelphia
PA
19127
US

Administrative Contact [190687]:
ELRN INC. hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
ELRN, Inc.
10 Shurs Lane
Philadelphia
PA
19127
US
Phone: +1.2154873700

Billing Contact [190687]:
ELRN INC. hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
ELRN, Inc.
10 Shurs Lane
Philadelphia
PA
19127
US
Phone: +1.2154873700

Technical Contact [190687]:
ELRN INC. hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
ELRN, Inc.
10 Shurs Lane
Philadelphia
PA
19127
US
Phone: +1.2154873700

Domain servers in listed order:

NS1.TRAFFICCLUB.COM
NS2.TRAFFICCLUB.COM

Record created on: 2005-06-15 18:39:12.0
Database last updated on: 2006-03-23 15:42:00.027
Domain Expires on: 2007-06-15 18:39:12.0

UPDATE: cobranchi.org, too

Domain ID:D106638429-LROR
Domain Name:COBRANCHI.ORG
Created On:15-Jun-2005 22:39:13 UTC
Last Updated On:10-Apr-2006 00:33:33 UTC
Expiration Date:15-Jun-2007 22:39:13 UTC
Sponsoring Registrar:Moniker Online Services Inc. (R145-LROR)
Status:CLIENT DELETE PROHIBITED
Status:CLIENT TRANSFER PROHIBITED
Status:CLIENT UPDATE PROHIBITED
Registrant ID:MONIKER190687
Registrant Name:ELRN
Registrant Organization:ELRN, Inc.
Registrant Street1:10 Shurs Lane
Registrant Street2:
Registrant Street3:
Registrant City:Philadelphia
Registrant State/Province:PA
Registrant Postal Code:19127
Registrant Country:US
Registrant Phone:+1.2154873700
Registrant Phone Ext.:
Registrant FAX:
Registrant FAX Ext.:
Registrant Email:hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
Admin ID:MONIKER190687
Admin Name:ELRN
Admin Organization:ELRN, Inc.
Admin Street1:10 Shurs Lane
Admin Street2:
Admin Street3:
Admin City:Philadelphia
Admin State/Province:PA
Admin Postal Code:19127
Admin Country:US
Admin Phone:+1.2154873700
Admin Phone Ext.:
Admin FAX:
Admin FAX Ext.:
Admin Email:hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
Tech ID:MONIKER190687
Tech Name:ELRN
Tech Organization:ELRN, Inc.
Tech Street1:10 Shurs Lane
Tech Street2:
Tech Street3:
Tech City:Philadelphia
Tech State/Province:PA
Tech Postal Code:19127
Tech Country:US
Tech Phone:+1.2154873700
Tech Phone Ext.:
Tech FAX:
Tech FAX Ext.:
Tech Email:hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
Name Server:NS1.TRAFFICCLUB.COM
Name Server:NS2.TRAFFICCLUB.COM
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:
Name Server:

UPDATE: And cobranchi.info, too. Should I be flattered?

Domain ID:D10419034-LRMS
Domain Name:COBRANCHI.INFO
Created On:15-Jun-2005 22:39:11 UTC
Last Updated On:10-Apr-2006 20:46:03 UTC
Expiration Date:15-Jun-2007 22:39:11 UTC
Sponsoring Registrar:Moniker Online Services Inc. (R245-LRMS)
Status:CLIENT DELETE PROHIBITED
Status:CLIENT TRANSFER PROHIBITED
Status:CLIENT UPDATE PROHIBITED
Registrant ID:MONIKER190687
Registrant Name:ELRN
Registrant Organization:ELRN, Inc.
Registrant Street1:10 Shurs Lane
Registrant Street2:
Registrant Street3:
Registrant City:Philadelphia
Registrant State/Province:PA
Registrant Postal Code:19127
Registrant Country:US
Registrant Phone:+1.2154873700
Registrant Phone Ext.:
Registrant FAX:
Registrant FAX Ext.:
Registrant Email:hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
Admin ID:MONIKER190687
Admin Name:ELRN
Admin Organization:ELRN, Inc.
Admin Street1:10 Shurs Lane
Admin Street2:
Admin Street3:
Admin City:Philadelphia
Admin State/Province:PA
Admin Postal Code:19127
Admin Country:US
Admin Phone:+1.2154873700
Admin Phone Ext.:
Admin FAX:
Admin FAX Ext.:
Admin Email:hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
Billing ID:MONIKER190687
Billing Name:ELRN
Billing Organization:ELRN, Inc.
Billing Street1:10 Shurs Lane
Billing Street2:
Billing Street3:
Billing City:Philadelphia
Billing State/Province:PA
Billing Postal Code:19127
Billing Country:US
Billing Phone:+1.2154873700
Billing Phone Ext.:
Billing FAX:
Billing FAX Ext.:
Billing Email:hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
Tech ID:MONIKER190687
Tech Name:ELRN
Tech Organization:ELRN, Inc.
Tech Street1:10 Shurs Lane
Tech Street2:
Tech Street3:
Tech City:Philadelphia
Tech State/Province:PA
Tech Postal Code:19127
Tech Country:US
Tech Phone:+1.2154873700
Tech Phone Ext.:
Tech FAX:
Tech FAX Ext.:
Tech Email:hmandel@LearningByGrace.org
Name Server:NS1.TRAFFICCLUB.COM
Name Server:NS2.TRAFFICCLUB.COM

AND THEY CAN’T DO MATH, EITHER

Filed on at 4:34 am under by dcobranchi

WND is still pounding the table for the German homeschoolers.

Aside to WND editors– the exchange rate is approximately 1 euro= $1.35. The correct amounts of the fines in USD are $4050 and $6750.

LOTD

Filed on at 4:15 am under by dcobranchi

I really don’t know what to say about this (other than it must be Affirmative Action for Wackos Week.)

Raising of the dead is the brain’s ultimate manipulation

William Saletan’s “As it turns out, morality is all in our mind,”(April 8) revels in the fact that soon science will be able to manipulate the brain of man, evolved from a primate, to kill with reason. Like Hitler, we all have our reasons to kill and the urge to kill is overridden by the knowledge that the raising of the dead is the ultimate manipulation of man (and his brain).

Everyone can see and know the divine wisdom of this column appearing in The News Journal on Easter Sunday, the day many in mankind celebrate the raising of the dead.

Mary Saint Matthew, Elkton, Md.

BONUS LOTD (from the same source):

Brandywine can justify another school tax increase

I am writing in response to the recent letter, “Brandywine can’t justify another school tax increase.” This referendum directly impacts our children, programming and protects our investment from the last referendum. Our community has embraced the renovation of our schools and therefore needs to provide the funding to operate those schools and support the district’s efforts.

I have two children in the district and both have received a private school education in a public school setting. One only needs to visit any of our schools to see that good things are happening. Our civic duty is to continue to support our schools and our children. The increase the district is asking for is minor when you compare the taxes paid in Brandywine Hundred on our assessed values instead of our actual property values.

Supporting the Brandywine School District with this referendum will directly impact our property values, our future and most importantly our children’s future.

Christina Benton, PTA President, Springer Middle School,, Wilmington

Translation: We need to increase taxes to justify the recent increase in taxes. Is anyone shocked that the writer is the president of the NEA lapdog, PTA? And, BTW, why is the PTA president singing the praises of a “private school education”?

TEACH OR PREACH?

Filed on April 11, 2007 at 9:27 pm under by dcobranchi

Advocates for teaching the Bible in g-schools need to conceal their true motives if they’re to have a snowball’s chance in Hell of passing constitutional muster. This guy doesn’t even come close:

On the eve both of the Passover and Easter, Rep. Warren Chisum (R-Pampa) brought forth a bill whose chances of enactment approximate those of Rick Warren’s accompanying Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on the sitar as they belt out “Amazing Grace.” Chisum wants the Bible taught in public schools as a textbook.

Not, be it noted, as an instrument of witness or worship. As a source, rather, of knowledge. “We’re not going to preach the Bible,” said Chisum, “we’re going to teach the Bible and how it affects all of our writings, documents, and the formulation of our government. We’re taking it as a document that has historical value. It’s the most widely distributed book in the world…”

If a student doesn’t get the connection between human liberty and the sovereignty of God, he misses something fundamental to human self-understanding. Democratic institutions live and move and have their being on account, fundamentally, of Old Testament/New Testament affirmations as to human responsibility and accountability.

So what’s wrong with teaching that?

What’s wrong, of course, is that it establishes the Christian God and worship thereof as the state religion. AFAIK, that’s still unconstitutional.

VOTE EARLY AND VOTE OFTEN

Filed on at 8:25 pm under by dcobranchi

Just kidding. But Spunky is closing the gap. 🙂

POLICE ACADEMY 67

Filed on at 4:50 am under by dcobranchi

The CoH is here.

“FREE” SCHOOL

Filed on April 10, 2007 at 11:28 pm under by dcobranchi

Free as in Sudbury, not as in beer.

Here’s a pretty good piece on an “unschool.” The reporter even makes the connection to unschooling. Worth a read.

YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK

Filed on at 11:05 pm under by dcobranchi

AG Gonzales has apparently been charged with “attempting to kill a DEA agent,” according to the DoJ website.

SOFT PR0N?

Filed on at 8:37 pm under by dcobranchi

Google Adsense is getting interesting.

UPDATE: Never mind; the pic’s gone.

WE’RE NUMBER 1

Filed on at 6:58 am under by dcobranchi

for the moment. 🙂

CHRIS WAS RIGHT

Filed on April 9, 2007 at 4:32 pm under by dcobranchi

We’re both getting beat by a dead blog (Spunky’s). And I really don’t see how the Domestic Church blog fits the category.

SOUNDS FAMILIAR

Filed on at 8:27 am under by dcobranchi

Read this bit about Pat Robertson’s pet law school and mentally substitute PHC. Works perfectly:

Goodling is only one of 150 graduates of Regent University currently serving in this administration, as Regent’s Web site proclaims proudly, a huge number for a 29-year-old school. Regent estimates that “approximately one out of every six Regent alumni is employed in some form of government work.” And that’s precisely what its founder desired. The school’s motto is “Christian Leadership To Change the World,” and the world seems to be changing apace. Former Attorney General John Ashcroft teaches at Regent, and graduates have achieved senior positions in the Bush administration. The express goal is not only to tear down the wall between church and state in America (a “lie of the left,” according to Robertson) but also to enmesh the two.

The law school’s dean, Jeffrey A. Brauch, urges in his “vision” statement that students reflect upon “the critical role the Christian faith should play in our legal system.” Jason Eige (’99), senior assistant to Virginia Attorney General Bob McDonnell, puts it pithily in the alumni newsletter, Regent Remark: “Your Résumé Is God’s Instrument.”

Dollars to donuts that a large percentage of current Regents students graduated from PHC.

MS: UGLY ED

Filed on at 3:07 am under by dcobranchi

The Clarion (MS) Ledger really doesn’t like home education:

Conspicuous in its absence in the 2007 Legislature was legislation to tighten laws regarding home schooling.

This is an election year, and parents having the easy ability to take their kids out of school is a hot-button issue – perhaps explaining the nonexistence. Call it an “excused” absence, perhaps.

But it should be more carefully studied, and state Superintendent of Education Hank Bounds is doing so, to determine if the state should take action.

Especially pertinent should be accurately determining the numbers of students who are being taken out of public schools in Mississippi, their levels of achievement, and if they are adding to the state’s dismal dropout rate.

As of September, 11, 222 Mississippi kids were registered with the state Department of Education as home-schooled students.

Mississippi has some of the most lax homeschooling laws in the nation, which homeschoolers applaud. But they also allow for abuse by parents who are simply disgruntled, yanking kids from school and adding to the state’s social burdens. It should not be easy to deny children an education.

That “dropout” graf earns the editorial writer the coveted HE&OS Idiot of the Day award.

I’M SHOCKED, SHOCKED I TELL YOU!

Filed on April 8, 2007 at 10:43 pm under by dcobranchi

An administration flack is (allegedly) corrupt:

WASHINGTON (AP) — A Department of Education official who owned about $100,000 worth of stock in a student loan company while overseeing lenders has been placed on leave, a spokeswoman for the department said Friday.

Matteo Fontana, who oversees lenders and guarantee agencies that participate in the Federal Family Education Loan Program, was placed on leave with pay a day after his ownership of the stock in Education Lending Group Inc. was disclosed.

Corruption in the Greedy Old Party? Whodathunkit?

STATE SPONSORS OF TERROR

Filed on April 6, 2007 at 8:01 am under by dcobranchi

The U.S. military?

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) — An Iranian opposition group based in Iraq, despite being considered terrorists by the United States, continues to receive protection from the American military in the face of Iraqi pressure to leave the country.

It’s a paradox possible only because the United States considers the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, or MEK, a source of valuable intelligence on Iran.

Iranian officials tied the MEK to an explosion in February at a girls school in Zahedan, Iran. (Full story)

The group also is credited with helping expose Iran’s secret nuclear program through spying on Tehran for decades. And the group is considered an ally to America because of its opposition to Tehran.

However, the U.S. State Department officially considers the MEK a terrorist organization — meaning no American can deal with it; U.S. banks must freeze its assets; and any American giving support to its members is committing a crime.

Whatever happened to the GWoT?

EDWARDS FOR PRESIDENT

Filed on at 6:33 am under by dcobranchi

With this exchange Edwards wins my “vote.”

Elizabeth has announced that you plan to hire a tutor to help home-school your two youngest children, Emma Claire and Jack, in the fall so the family can be together on the campaign trail. Have you realized how many conservative votes you could get if you play up your plans for home schooling?

I hadn’t thought about that.

I assume that evolution will not be part of the curriculum.

It’ll be part of our curriculum.

Other than thinking about it, have you made any arrangements for home schooling?

No. We haven’t even talked to the children about it, which we have to do.

I love how the conservative Iowa home educator automatically assumes that homeschooling equals creationist. Too funny.

COOL APOD

Filed on at 5:55 am under by dcobranchi

It’s an animated jpg of Saturn over 4 years.

THOSE PROFESSIONAL (SUBSTITUTE) TEACHERS

Filed on at 5:49 am under by dcobranchi

I find it hard to believe that this didn’t hurt:

AMANDA, Ohio (AP) — A substitute teacher’s tool for silencing chatty kindergartners — clothespins — doesn’t wash with school officials.

Four boys said spring-type clothespins were placed over their upper or lower lips for talking too much in class, Amanda-Clearcreek Primary School principal Mike Johnsen wrote in a letter to parents this week.

Ruth Ann Stoneburner, a retired school nurse who had worked as a substitute for several years, confirmed to Johnsen that she had used the clothespin discipline March 26, he said.

Stoneburner will not work again in the Amanda-Clearcreek district and was being reported to the state education department, Superintendent J.B. Dick said Wednesday.

Officials found out about the discipline after a parent complained. The students weren’t hurt, but the punishment isn’t condoned by the district, Dick said.

C+, THEN

Filed on April 5, 2007 at 5:47 pm under by dcobranchi

An annoying HEK writes an annoying essay.

A WASTE OF MONEY?

Filed on at 4:17 pm under by dcobranchi

A big study of the effectiveness of computer-assisted math and reading programs finds there isn’t any.

The study found achievement scores were no higher in classrooms using reading and math software products than in classrooms without the new products.

Researchers looked at elementary and secondary classes in 132 schools. The teachers that participated used more than a dozen software products to help deliver their lessons…

The report was based on schools and teachers not using the products in the previous school year. Whether products are more effective when teachers have more experience using them is being examined in a follow-up study.

GWB OR STD

Filed on April 4, 2007 at 6:52 pm under by dcobranchi

Which is more popular?

MORE HELP NEEDED

Filed on at 6:00 am under by dcobranchi

Thanks for all the biology suggestions. And, now, another request– Does anyone have any experience with Power Glide Spanish? Or any other Spanish programs?

RIGHT IN LINE

Filed on at 1:33 am under by dcobranchi

Stats for Princeton’s incoming class:

Of the accepted students, 59 percent are from public schools, 30 percent private, nine percent religiously based and two percent were home-schooled.

MY FAVORITE YANKEE, EX-YANKEE, AND YANKEE AGAIN

Filed on at 1:18 am under by dcobranchi

Andy Pettitte, home educator (sort of).

Andy Pettitte realizes this could be his last season in the major leagues so he is doing things a bit differently. As Pettitte prepares to make his first start of the season in his second incarnation as a Yankee on Wednesday night, he explained how his wife and four children will be at the game.

And the next home game and the next one and the next one, too.

Pettitte and his wife, Laura, removed their three school age children from schools in Deer Park, Texas, so the family can be together in Westchester County. Pettitte said Josh, 12, Jared, 8, and Lexy, 5, will be home schooled. Luke turns 2 in June.

“It’s only for two months,” Pettitte said. “We’ll have it done for them at home. It’s better than having everyone move around.”

QOTD

Filed on at 1:06 am under by dcobranchi

I’ve learned a lot of life skills because of school. Thus far, unrelenting cynicism has proven the most useful. But whoever is spreading this rumor that school is teaching us these Aesop-esque lessons, must be the disillusioned products of home schooling.

GOOD NEWS (FOR A CHANGE)

Filed on at 12:20 am under by dcobranchi

The government does something right:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Striking a blow for cell phone haters everywhere, a government agency on Tuesday said it will keep a rule in place that requires the divisive devices to be turned off during airline flights.

Yeah, it’s not libertarian. But I spend enough time on planes that the thought of sitting next to some chattering yahoo for three hours had me contemplating the wisdom in banning weapons on board.

TOO YOUNG, I GUESS

Filed on at 12:15 am under by dcobranchi

for “abstinence only” sex education?

Five fifth-grade students face criminal charges after authorities said four of them had sex in front of other students in an unsupervised classroom and kept a classmate posted as a lookout for teachers.

The students were arrested Tuesday at the Spearsville school in rural north Louisiana, authorities said. Two 11-year-old girls, a 12-year-old boy and a 13-year old boy were charged with obscenity, a felony. An 11-year-old boy, the alleged lookout, was charged with being an accessory…

The class, which had around 10 other students, was alone for about 15 minutes, he said.

“When no teacher showed up, the four began to have sex in the classroom with the other elementary students in the classroom with them,” he said.

IDIOT OF THE DAY

Filed on April 2, 2007 at 6:02 pm under by dcobranchi

Whatever editor penned this sentence:

And in Alabama, the decision of a parent to home-school a child or to send him or her to a private or church school costs the public schools more than $6,900 a year.

THE HOME EDUCRAT SPEAKS

Filed on at 5:56 pm under by dcobranchi

Where’s the data showing homeschooling has “declined significantly”?

Though Pennsylvania’s numbers have leveled off, some observers see it as a signal of strength, because other states have declined significantly in recent years. Pennsylvania’s homeschool enrollment remains strong, experts say, because the state committed early on to a certification program — a recognized graduation/diploma provision in a variety of fields — “that still has (Pennsylvania) ahead of most other states,” according to a report on pahomeschoolers.com.

And I still call “total bullshit” on the certification program. The only purpose it serves is to keep the home educrat in business.

ONE FOR THE WIKI

Filed on April 1, 2007 at 9:10 am under by dcobranchi

Peanut butter disproves evolution.

LOTD

Filed on at 8:58 am under by dcobranchi

David Gregory misses the point entirely:

It’s time to teach children about the Bible at home

It was my unusual privilege, in the years before the Berlin wall went down, to have known two men, both European, whose Christian ministry included extensive traveling behind the Iron Curtain and a clandestine distribution of Bibles. Two clear facts emerged from knowing these gentlemen. One was that the Bible was among the most hated contraband in the entire Soviet Union, and the second was that even just the reading of it by a father to his children constituted a severely punishable offense. After all, atheism cannot be bothered with the idea that there is a God.

Hosea said, “My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge” (4:6). Notice that the prophet did not say lack of preaching, but just lack of knowledge. So it would seem that the very powerful secular-humanism oriented, educational powers-that-be have struck upon a magical weapon to destroy God’s people. Very simple — take away the knowledge of the Bible. And in the accomplishing of that agenda, they have been eminently successful, as Prothero states.

The answer? Certainly, any widespread teaching of the Bible in the public schools, as Prothero proposes, however desirable, will never happen. The NEA and their state affiliates simply will not allow any of their hard fought territory to be reclaimed by such unscientific verbiage. The only answer, it seems, is what the home-schoolers have discovered. If the kids can’t get it at school, bring them home and teach them there.

David E. Gregory

Belgrade

degregory@earthlink.net

Prothero is, presumably, Prof. Stephen Prothero. He is emphatically not calling for the theocracy that Gregory would endorse:

Q. How do you think teaching about religion in public schools should be done?

A. My proposal is for two courses in the public schools — on world religions and on the Bible. The Bible course is happening in about 8 percent of school districts. That’s not enough, but the fact that it’s being done there shows me that it can be done and is being done constitutionally. These need to be courses that are teaching religion instead of preaching religion.

Teaching religion without preaching religion is an awfully high hurdle. And I don’t see why Christianity should have a privileged position with a class of its own.

In the secular society of 21st century America, it’s probably just better (and easier) to leave the religious education to the pastors, imams, and rabbis.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Filed on at 8:18 am under by dcobranchi

The Chicago Sun-Times has an Op/Ed on vaccinations. It’s pro.

I’m not sure what to make of this throwaway line:

Despite vaccine resisters’ insistence that they are making a personal choice — which they strongly feel is no one else’s business — their choice has potentially far-reaching social consequences. Deciding to vaccinate isn’t like deciding whether to circumcise, home-school, baptize or give your child a silly name. It’s one that renders “live-and-let-live” relativism nonsensical, because vaccination only works well if most people do it.

HELP NEEDED

Filed on at 7:17 am under by dcobranchi

We’re looking for recs on a high school level biology program. Anything creationist is automatically DQ’d.

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