Two days into the start of my daughter’s 7th grade school year, she brought home a document that triggered a bit of an apoplectic, expletive-laden meltdown for me, and it was all centered around one word, Patriotism. The document was a form the school wanted me to sign acknowledging my receipt of something called the “Framework for Citizenship- The Student Code of Conduct.”
This document, to me, read like a badly written Sci Fi novel, only the Fi was missing, as in, this was a non-fiction declaration.
There were a few key parts of the document here, which I’ll cover in this article, but I more thoroughly break down the document in the video below:
The document seemed, for the most part, to be quite innocuous but for a few key phrases that got my attention almost immediately. The first such phrase comes in the first paragraph of the document, where the school district explained they were striving to “promote good citizens.” Yes, schools have for a while entered into the business of making “good citizens” so that, while troubling to me, merely brought a bit of pink to my otherwise sun-deprived pallor.
I kept reading, and as I read I quickly came upon another phrase that converted my bit of pink to a persistent flush of gentle red. The document explained that the Framework for Citizenship was based on four components, with the first component being Universal Values.
I immediately recognized in that phrase a deliberate intent to shut off debate, to quiet dissent by framing their ‘values’ within the terminology of the universal. Who was I to deny what was simply known and appreciated and valued by all, universally?
Next, we got to the word that pushed my flush of gentle red to a beating crimson flame, patriotism. As part of the universal values, the document listed patriotism. Let’s be clear here, what this document purports to do is to express a program of Student Conduct that includes, as part of that program, patriotism.
While already preparing to engage in full froth, my eyes traversed the myriad of minefields set against one who held on to an individualistic worldview. Finally, I reached defcon EFFING HELZ when I read this sentence; ” All members of our community should be aware of those behaviors that are contrary to good student behavior and could lead to consequences as related to the Code of Conduct.”
As you read that sentence, I want you to travel with me, as I did this past Tuesday, August 29th, back to one of the “Universal” values listed in the beginning, patriotism. Have you coupled those two moments together, as I did? If so, did you proceed to mimic the flame, fury and explosion of what surely must be the Super volcano under Yellowstone the next time it lets loose its molten fists of doom?
Well, if you didn’t, don’t worry, I got this. I emoted plenty enough to cover the full rage of a thousand parents who fully understood what I understood about the role this school was presuming to take in my daughter’s life, the engineer of life, a life built for one purpose, to serve the state. If my daughter doesn’t demonstrate patriotism she could suffer consequences. This is LITERALLY the thought police. It’s the kind of code of conduct you’d expect from Kim Jung Un, not your local school principle.
At this point, if you’re conservative, perhaps you’re thinking I’m overreacting. I get it, you see value in patriotism, you see usefulness in nationalism. That’s fine, but please don’t advocate for my child to be “taught” to believe as you do. I prefer my child be equipped, rather than programmed, even if it means being programmed to think as you do.
But, if you ARE conservative, hold on kids. That patriotism stuff is just a backdoor that’s intended to take your kid on a journey that places their loyalty, their patriotism far beyond the border of your beloved America.
To understand that, you have to look at the third component of the four listed for the school’s Framework for Citizenship: “Global Understanding: To develop- respect and appreciation for all people and beliefs, valuing the various cultures, races, and individual characteristics of our schools.”
Ask yourself this question, do you want your child to respect ALL people and ALL beliefs? As I explain in the video above, do we tell our children to appreciate the belief system of a Pol Pot who murdered more than half of the ‘citizens’ of Cambodia because he had a belief that he needed to purge the population to create a worker’s paradise? No, of course not. This value is about getting your child to think globally, preparing your child to accept a global citizenship.
So, if you’re a conservative, before you smile, proud of your school and the flag it will have your child salute and chant to every morning, remember that the flag, that nationalist patriotism is just a backdoor to global citizenship.
Finally, let me touch upon the initiative that all of this is based on, an initiative that is only mentioned in passing. As soon as I heard the phrase, I knew (and turned out to be right) that there was far more behind that phrase beyond being a mere descriptor. The phrase I stumbled upon was “whole child.” It was used in this context: “These four guiding principles promote the education of the whole child…”
If you’d like to dig deeper down the rabbit hole, go here, ascd.org.
What is the ASCD? It stands for ” Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.” If you see your school using some of the phrases here, especially the whole child phrase, there’s a high degree of certainty your school is working in partnership with this organization, an international organization with over 155,000 members, with partnerships with schools in over 128 countries, bringing the Whole Child Initiative to the planet since 2007.
As of 2015, the organization is run by Deborah S. Delisle, the former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Elementary and Secondary Education. She served under Barack Hussein Obama and the then Education Secretary Arne Duncan, who was instrumental in getting everyone’s favorite cog-training program, common core, implemented by American government schools.
As a little side note, I think it bears revealing that good ole Arne has since moved on as a managing partner for the Chicago CRED, which is part of something called the Emerson Collective. They’re a lovely bunch of one-worlders advocating for positive rights (which means they believe government should be able to force people to give stuff away to other people for free, or, they believe in slavery but they call it equality instead of slavery).
Here’s just a little taste of Arne’s world:
We are an organization dedicated to removing barriers to opportunity so people can live to their full potential. Established and led by Laurene Powell Jobs, we center our work on education, immigration reform, the environment, and other social justice initiatives. We use a wide range of tools and strategies—partnering with entrepreneurs and experts, parents and policymakers, advocates and administrators—to develop and execute innovative solutions that will spur change and promote equality…..
This is the quote they use as their motto:
In one soul, in your soul, there are resources for the world.
RALPH WALDO EMERSON
Remember, Arne is the former boss of the CEO of the organization that has designed the curriculum of the school my daughter attends, the same school that sent me that document revealing the Whole Child curriculum without even coming close to the full agenda behind that Word Citizenship program.
As for what my next step is, well, you’re reading it, and hopefully you’re seeing it (if you watch the video). If you received a similar letter, it is up to you how you respond. This, right here, is how I have chosen to respond, to bring it to the attention of as many people as I possibly can and let them decide what to do next with this information. As for me, well, let’s just say there will be some serious conversation with teachers.
I leave you with the full text of the document that, at the end of the day, I refused to sign:
The (Unnamed) Area School District, in partnership with the family and the community, strives to promote good citizens and community-minded students. The Student Code of Conduct is a document to assist in that endeavor,
Our Framework for Citizenship seeks to build a safe, caring and respectful learning community based upon four components:
- Universal Values: Courage, empathy, friendship, honesty, integrity, kindness, loyalty, patience, patriotism, persistence, respect of others and self, responsibility, self-discipline, tolerance, trust, work ethic.
- Excellence: Internal push and desire to make a positive contribution to the community and society.
- Global Understanding: To develop- respect and appreciation for all people and beliefs, valuing the various cultures, races, and individual characteristics of our schools.
- Community Service: To become actively involved in activism that improves our community.
These four guiding principles promote the education of the whole child; our goal is to support and teach these four components through your child’s education the (Unnamed) Area School District.
We ask that parents/guardians review the Code of Conduct, especially the information that speaks to Our Framework for Citizenship. All members of our community should be aware of those behaviors that are contrary to good student behavior and could lead to consequences as related to the Code of Conduct.
Your signature and your child’s signature below indicate that you have been given a copy of the Student Code of Conduct for your review.
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