5 out of 5 stars *****
The controversy surrounding Common Core is the subject that Glenn Beck tackles in Conform: Exposing the Truth About Schools. Control of the American school system that is driven by unions rather than children is at the heart of the controversy. Glenn explains the history and rationale behind Common Core, a set of universal standards to improve the delivery of a curriculum that each state may tweak to meet its particular needs. This homogenization sounds like a simplification, and therefore, a need-fulfilling update to a failing educational system.
The author argues that actual results from Common Core's application are more foreboding than comforting. Common Core may create a nation of drones rather than free-thinking individuals. A simple approach to basic arithmetic becomes a 30-step convolution that arrives at an answer, one which is incorrect if the Common Core approach is not utilized; for example, if division of one number into another yields the same answer, it is considered incorrect.
The controversy deepens with Common Core's unwritten and unspoken intention to control how children think. This opens the door for their manipulation and indoctrination into socialistic views, like the collective is more important than the individual. That and rewriting history to suit an ideology that supports European political concepts, favoring Islam while diminishing Christianity, and teaching that America's Constitutional Republic inspired by Judaeo-Christian morals is outdated. This concept of a collective challenges the role and influence that the nuclear family has on their children when implementing such an educational tool.
This book explains why Common Core became so popular in the first place. The idea implies Common Core standards improve America's status in the world; so most Governors sign on before it is complete. States also receive a nice Federal check for accepting Common Core. Powerful government unions endorse the program. Bill Gates invests heavily in Common Core as his company, Microsoft, makes the software for all the curriculum. Popular politicians, like Jeb Bush, argue against Common Core resistance.
Beck further explains that most people may be unaware that unions collectively bargain deals that benefit unions over children. Politicians are reluctant to go against political correctness or the powerful labor union, the National Education Association (NEA), who have the power to sway elections and influence one's political career. The NEA represents teachers, secretaries and educational support personnel, not children. All the money thrown at education bears witness to the success of collective bargains securing great deals for union administrators but no change, whatsoever, in student scores or learning abilities. If anything, government control of schools ensures a decline or maintenance of the status quo.
Glenn points out how review of textbooks reveal Special Interest involvement which indoctrinates students to favor their agenda at the cost of the truth. Parents are not part of the process that introduces their children to information and processes unfamiliar to them. Less choices are available for parents who have legitimate questions about the veracity of textbook content. Instead, parents are told that educators know what is best for their children when it comes to this fundamental aspect of their lives.
This book also gets into the fight against Common Core, which has tried to hide the bad publicity by changing its label, a common Progressive tactic used in other unpopular programs, like Agenda 21 becoming some Green Earth Sustainability Initiative. Beck cites Florida's attempt to hide the bad news about Common Core by relabeling it, Next Generation Sunshine State Standards. Support to fight Common Core is given to the reader with suggestions to attend: 9.12 Project Groups, which exist locally in just about every state, to coordinate and educate communities on civic and social issues; School Board and State Legislative meetings to give voice to community and individual concerns that affect children, who have no voice; and to go online to connect to Education Action Groups, which may suggest reviewing textbooks.
It is vital to have private individuals with the passion to write about topics that affect all of us and future generations. Glenn Beck is such an individual who writes this professional, informative, and essential book that serves Americans in the name of freedom and liberty.