OUTCOME-BASED EDUCATION: THE HIGHJACKING OF AMERICA'S CHILDREN
"Already looking toward the year 2000 A.D., the president of the National Education Association, Catherine Barrett, wrote in the Feb. 10, 1973, issue of the Saturday Review of Education, that 'dramatic changes in the way we will raise children in the year 2000 are indicated, particularly in terms of schooling.... We will need to recognize that the so-called "basic skills" which currently represent nearly the total effort in elementary schools, will be taught in one- quarter of the present school-day.... When this happens--and it is nearly here--the teacher can rise to his true calling. More than a dispenser of information, the teacher will be a conveyor of values, a philosopher.... We will be the agents of change'."
Dennis Lawrence Cuddy, Ph.D.
Table of Contents
Just What Is Going On?
What OBE Reveals About Itself
How OBE Was Conceived And Given Birth
OBE And The Catholic Educational Scene
Alternative Source Of Values
Toward A Socialist Transformation Of The West
Just What Is Wrong With OBE?
Poisoning The Future
Dennis Laurence Cuddy, Ph.D., Now Is The Dawning Of The New Age New World Order, Hearthstone Publishing LTD., Oklahoma City, OK, p. 176.
Some years ago, a school bus and its cargo of children was captured, hidden away, and the passengers held for ransom. The shock of this perversion of purpose, the take-over of children put to the purposes of a kidnapper, taken advantage of in their presence together for transport to and from school, was felt world wide. It was recognized that the trust of both parents and the children had been violated by someone bent on achieving a purpose of his own—extorting from those who cared for and loved those children what he wanted.
More and more persons—parents especially—are asking if something similar is not being done under the guise of what is called "outcome-based education." If the critics of this development in schooling are correct, certain philosophers and ideologically motivated educators have taken over classrooms and are holding students hostage to the ideas and theories of what should be learned and accepted. If this is so, then education is being turned from its purpose of formation through offering truth and wisdom in keeping with the dignity of the human person to indoctrination by means of both inclusion and omission to advance subjective purposes and ideologies.
The very possibility alone demands the matter be examined closely, which this monograph will attempt to do. The future of human society and culture obviously depends on what can be established in this regard.
Just What Is Going On?
Proponents of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) insist there is nothing sinister happening. OBE is simply an effort to improve and sharpen education of our young people, especially in view of the impending Third Millennium. In this outlook, OBE is a means of making sure today's students can implement and apply what they have learned, putting it into practice in an increasingly complex and challenging environment. The emphasis, therefore, is practical—the living of learning—rather than simply accumulating information. It perhaps could be summarized with a motto, "Doing More Than Knowing."
But there is a wealth of evidence that there is more to it than that. And the totality of evidence suggests that the real "outcome" being sought is to determine what students as tomorrow's citizens will do and toward what purpose by controlling what they learn and what they fail to learn now. Thus, the recent deemphasis of history in Littleton, Colorado, public high schools after two OBE enthusiasts were elected to the school board, despite the fact they insisted, when running for office, that they supported a stress on basics. History is not very basic for OBE people because it unmasks foolishness and points out wisdom. It verifies unchanging truths and principles in the experience of our ancestors. Those determined to discredit such things dare not let those they are teaching look backward.
In September, 1995, Robert Holland, op-ed page editor of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, wrote:
". . . Hundreds of people from all parts of the country have called me the past two years to ask my advice on how to halt the monolithic OBE (Outcome-Based Education) movement —and effort of the education/industrial complex to transform schooling radically according to engineered 'outcomes'—many of them based on Skinnerian behavior modification." (The late B.J. Skinner, advocate of the possibility and desirability of controlling all human behavior through psychological manipulation.—FM)
Holland lists some of the things his callers reported: Asking children strange and personal questions; failure to correct students' misspellings; ending honors course in Western Civilization; requiring children to perform community service; promoting the notion the school is the children's family; junking grades, texts, class rankings.
Another writer, Candace de Russy, gives some questions asked of students that are indeed strange and personal, and under federal sponsorship, no less. Among the questions:
"(Does) the prospect of working most of my adult life depress me?"
"Are you routinely left at home without adults being there?"
"Have you ever thought about killing yourself?"
"Have you ever worried about your birth father's drinking too much or using drugs?"
"Have you ever been touched sexually by anyone (adult or young person) in a way that you felt was inappropriate?"
"Are you expected to do chores and help out at home?"
In a test on a story titled, "Your Dad Is a Wimp?" the highest grade given fourth-graders went to a pupil who wrote it would be "fun" to be part of a family like that of the character Jesse, whose mother worked and whose father stayed home cooking. The lowest score went to a pupil who wrote he wouldn't like to live with a family like Jesse's, being happy in a family that can be presumed to be the traditional one with Dad working and Mom at home.
Another way to earn a low score in such testing is to hold firm to views in place before certain recommended reading and dialogue occurred, or (in a discussion supposedly concerning the mathematics of corn production) for even mentioning herbicides or pesticides as means of increasing crop yield.
The Phyllis Schlafly Report tells of an attempt (in 1995) to introduce a "Multicultural Nonsexist Education Plan" into the Des Moines (IA) public school district. This called for developing gay/lesbian information modules that could be "fully integrated" by what the plan itself called infusion into every level of school: "To use the instructional materials selection cycle to infuse information regarding gay/lesbian/bisexual issues into the curriculum." Some of the discussion to be generated by this infusion was to concern "same-gender families and parenting: evolution of the modern gay/lesbian/bisexual identity . . .; information on gender/sexual orientation and the natural diversity present in human beings." The plan called for encouraging staff and student attendance at the annual "Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Youth Conference," for providing information on national marches for "Lesbians and Gay Rights," for "advertising the Gay and Lesbian Resource Center in school newspapers," and for providing "support for gay/lesbian/bisexual staff members."
The plan apparently was placed on hold after considerable resistance. The Phyllis Schlafly Report commented:
"The curriculum is determined to use the public schools as a change agent to create 'student awareness of homophobic thinking and behavior and to compare these with other forms of prejudice and oppression'."
If this plan is not specifically part of Outcome-Based Education it certainly employs the OBE methodology and tactic, and would fit in without difficulty once OBE philosophy dominates the general educational purpose.
The anecdotal and inferential evidence about what OBE is about could fill a several-volume library. But the whole picture should be filled on by evidence from OBE sources, statements, and revelations.
What OBE Reveals About Itself
The descriptive name for this movement and the education it promotes was given by Dr. William Spady, sociologist and director of the International Center on Outcome-Based Education. Dr. Spady said that in his OBE, "factual recall fade(s) into the background." This fading out of fact from students' minds is a first and required step for OBE's purpose —in the words of Prof. Benjamin Bloom, "to change the thoughts, feelings and actions of students." Dr. Spady confirms that OBE is based on Prof. Bloom's theories, among which is that the "affective domain" (feelings, beliefs, attitudes) is of supreme importance. Thus "good teaching" is described by the Professor as "the teacher's ability to challenge students' fixed beliefs."
Luksik and Hoffecker give evidence of just what that means:
"'Changing Values' is the title of a student worksheet from Iowa. Its introduction tells pupils, 'The values of past generations do not always meet our present needs.'The worksheet explains that although some old values are still held, others have been replaced with 'new values.' Students are told either to write 'no change' or to explain what caused the 'new value' change. Look at just three of these 'old' American beliefs:
"2. People ought to have large families.
"4. Everyone has a right to have as many children as he or she wants.
"6. Americans have a right to the resources of the world."
Governmental interest in change-oriented education was identified by B.J. Skinner himself, in his work Technology of Teaching, 1968:
"Absolute power in education is not a serious issue today because it seems out of reach. However, a technology of teaching will need to be much more powerful if the race with catastrophe is to be won, and it may then, like any powerful technology, need to be contained. An appropriate counter control will not be generated as a revolt against aversive measures but by a policy designed to maximize the contribution which education will make to the strength of the culture. The issue is important because the government of the future will probably operate mainly through educational techniques."
What Skinner was saying is that future government will make an ally of education and its technology to reinforce its rule and the culture favorable to it. (The Communist theoretician Antonio Gramsci advanced approximately the same thesis in the 1920s regarding the ascendancy of the Marxism he was acting for. Both Skinner and Gramsci are being proven correct in large areas of Outcome-Based Education.)
The federal government's interest and participation in OBE dates back well over a decade. U.S. Department of Education funds support the "Mastery in Learning Project" being carried on at nine regional laboratories. "Mastery Learning" was an earlier name before Dr. Spady renamed what is now more commonly called Outcome-Based Education. No matter what it is called, this kind of "education" is more Skinnerian, Pavlovian training, with behavior, control, and compliance the goal as revealed by "outcome"—which is to say not only acceptance of a desired viewpoint (or as now called a "politically correct" position) but also the effective use of that position in community, converting that viewpoint into active involvement.
As Texas Congressman Dick Armey explained it to his colleagues, "OBE shifts a school's focus from how much students know (cognitive outcomes) to how well they're socialized (affective outcomes).... It weans children from their parents' values to instill in them politically correct, secular-left values." Armey wrote fellow Congressmen that "Goals 2000 does all of this, via a new national school board called NESIC."
"Goals 2000" is part of the title of the Clinton Administration's "Educate America Act" passed by both bodies of the U.S. Congress in early 1994. It mandates an unprecedented intrusion into local control of education, and states as a primary goal that "all students will be involved in activities that demonstrate community service." NESIC is the National Education Standards Council set up by the Clinton act. This council will certify what all students should know and be able to do--which is precisely OBE at its essence.
How OBE Was Conceived and Given Birth
Long before it was known as OBE, the seeds for it were sown abroad by those such as the Fabian ideologue, H.G. Wells. He wrote these prophetic statements in his 1934 autobiography:
"The organization of this that I call the Open Conspiracy, the evocation of a greater sounder fellow to the Communist essay, an adequately implemented Liberal Socialism, which will ultimately supply teaching, coercive and directive public services to the whole world, is the immediate task....
". . . Its coming is likely to happen very quickly.... Sometimes I feel that generations of propaganda and education may have to precede it. . . Plans for political synthesis seem to grow bolder and more extensive."
After reading Wells' autobiography, Franklin D. Roosevelt on Feb. 1935, wrote the British socialist-futurist:
"How do you manage to retain such extraordinarily clear judgments?. . .. I believe our (the New Deal) biggest success is making people think during these past two years. They may not think straight but they are thinking in the right direction . . . and your direction and mine are not so far apart; at least we both seek peaceable conveyances in our travels."
On Nov. 20, 1936, Wells spoke to the Royal Institution of Great Britain on "World Encyclopaedia," suggesting a new social organization, "a new institution" of that name:
"(World Encyclopaedia) would play the role of an undogmatic Bible to a world culture.... It would hold the world together mentally.... Ultimately, if our dream is realized, it must exert a very great influence upon everyone who controls administrations, makes wars, directs mass behavior, feeds, moves, starves and kills populations.... You see how such an Encyclopaedic organization could spread like a nervous network, a system of mental control around the globe."
Earlier Wells had written that such an organization of "intelligent and quite possibly in some cases wealthy men" would at the most "utilize existing apparatus of political control" to attain its ends.
FDR had written Wells in December of 1933, thanking him for "doing much to educate people everywhere," saying he (FDR) had read "almost everything that you have written." In 1941, in his annual message to Congress, FDR defined a world which would guarantee to everyone "Four Freedoms," namely, Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom From Want, Freedom From Fear. It is not surprising to learn:
"From 1931, Harold Ickes belonged to an elite corps calling itself the Government (later, National) Planning Association, which drafted the tentative blueprint for the New Deal in consultation with the Fabian-sponsored group in London known as PEP (Political and Economic Planning)."
The Clinton Administration, which is fronting for OBE with both legislation and tax monies, is the heir to the New Deal. Whether it is being used by the Renaissance (a group of intelligent and, in most cases, wealthy, persons confirming Wells' prediction) organization to which Clinton himself belongs is not of immediate practical importance. OBE is the genius of Goals 2000, and far from being voluntary as some of its defenders claim, the purpose of Goals 2000 is to use funding to coerce all state educational systems to comply. That, too, Wells had foreseen as Liberal Socialism's peaceable but coercive method. Dr. Cuddy comments on the supposed voluntary character of Goals 2000:
"Because the . . . goals are codified under this law, it is a major power move by the federal government toward nationalizing American education, despite proponents' assurance that the law says participation is voluntary. When Congress provides about $1 billion for Goals 2000 over the next 3 years, it will be an offer that most states and local education agencies cannot refuse."
Clinton's own education secretary, Richard Reilly, points to economics as the force that will enroll most states in this program.
OBE and the Catholic Educational Scene
It would be thought that for many reasons, some discussed in the final segment of this monograph, that Catholics would be immune to the methods, promises, and purposes of OBE. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Not only do the economic pressures discussed above apply to private as well as public schools, the desire of many Catholic educators to be "accredited" and to match public schools in professionalism (which ironically would mean steps backwards in genuine excellence) lure many Catholic schools to bow to the pressure toward OBE conformity. Further, the uncritical and often superficial thought revealed in imprudent reforms imagined to implement "the spirit of Vatican II," has led many of the new generation of Catholic educators to accept the claims and methods of behaviorist psychology. A classic case of Outcome-Based Education was practiced on the leadership of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM) community of nuns in Los Angeles. One of the practitioners in that case, Dr. William Coulson, has drawn back in shock from the results, which had the former nuns abandoning their former goals and even their religious vocations.
Sr. M. Ann Eckhoff, S.S.N.D., superintendent of education for the Archdiocese of St. Louis, writing in Education St. Louis in December, 1993, explained "a number of school districts along with the Archdiocese are attempting to collaborate in the formation of a demonstration site for 'testing out' new ways of learning." Those new ways will include: "Emphasis on the process rather than the right answer."
A book review in the Pilot, official newspaper of the Boston Archdiocese, reveals and sounds a needed alarm about this seduction of Catholic education by OBE subjectivism. This highly significant review must be quoted at length:
"The issue of 'Catholic identity' of our schools is, in the view of many bishops, pastors, educators and parents, central to the survival and effectiveness of our schools. The way the central issue is treated in this book is disappointing. It relies on an extremely caricatured comparison of a 'pre-Vatican II' and 'post-Vatican II' Church. This section is not the work of the major authors but of a Helen Marks, a former Dominican sister. One suspects that the rhetoric . . . reflects more of her own odyssey than a theologically sophisticated or accurate analysis of the reality of the meaning and impact of Vatican II at which she dramatically asserts 'the Catholic Church recovered its soul.' (p. 51)
"If the 'inspirational ideology' which the book asserts is the new guiding vision for Catholic schools, then those concerned about the schools' Catholic identity had better take notice. In several places the book states that the new purpose is 'to pursue peace and social justice within an ecumenical and multicultural world.' Laudable as such an effort is, one suspects that it is not the specific purpose of the school but the wider goal of the whole Christian community. The school must impart to its students the intellectual and, yes, theological building blocks to make it possible for students to make significant contributions to such an effort.
"This will demand a quality religious education program rooted in the Church's deepest understanding of the mysteries of faith—especially the Incarnation and salvific redemption by Jesus Christ—which are the deepest and surest foundations of Catholic effort at societal transformation.
"None of this is suggested by this book. Rather it exudes what Avery Dulles calls 'the hermeneutics of discontinuity'—promoting the myth of some kind of radical new Catholicism that was given birth to at the Council. The book assures us that a Catholic school with this 'new vision' will have abandoned its attitudes of being 'uncompromising on its claims on truth' or seeing 'Catholic doctrine as received truth, the unchanging "deposit of faith" that must be handed down through successive generations'....
"According to the book all of this outdated concern with the Church's faith and truth has been replaced by a new style of religious education: 'Religion teachers now encourage personal interpretation and discussion in which students share their religious views...student-led prayers and creative liturgies center on friendship, belonging and reaching out to others'.
"If, as the book asserts, all this represents 'the evolutionary transformation within Catholic schools over three decades' (p. 10), then, I suspect we are in a problem situation and that our schools are fostering instead of combatting the slide into 'cultural Catholicism,' which has been observed by recent commentators."
Alternative Source Of Values
Abraham Maslow, one of the behaviorist psychologists whose theories served to smash to pieces the California Immaculate Heart of Mary sisterhood, was quoted in Pace magazine (December, 1969):
"Now religions have cracked up . . . (Children) have no source of values to go by. So they have to work everything out for themselves. This new humanistic revolution has an alternative source of values."
That source obviously is humanism. Maslow was 1967 Humanist of the Year. It seems inescapable that the psychologists whose theories move OBE were actively involved with what Maslow calls the crack-up of religions, so that Humanism would be able to put those pieces of "cracked up" religion together in the image of their own minds. Even those not given to credit conspiracies of such magnitude must see something preternatural about such fostered outcomes.
It might have been humanism which Fr. John A. Hardon S.J., had in mind when he wrote:
"Is there one basic error among those who are exalting human freedom? Yes, it is the error of divorcing human freedom from dependence on God. This is practical atheism, as identified by the Second Vatican Council. Each person's conscience is given the status of a supreme tribunal of moral judgment. Here the subjective conscience becomes ruler in moral matters apart from the mind and will Of God."
In 1907 Msgr. Robert Hugh Benson gave a chillingly prophetic vision of that sort of atheism (though perhaps not merely practical) that we are increasingly facing as today's reality: ". . . In 1917 . . . Communism really began . . . The new order began then . . . (After 1989) the final scheme of Western Free Trade . . . Esotericism is making enormous strides . . . and that means Pantheism . . . Patriotism has been dying fast . . . (There is) this European parliament . . . (They believe) cooperation is the one hope of the world . . . (There will be) the alliance of Psychology and Materialism . . . With the release Act in 1998 . . . (there were) the ministers of euthanasia . . . (The Lord of the World) had a magnetic character . . . rising out of the heaving dun-coloured waters of American Socialism like a vision . . . The press was engineered with extraordinary adroitness . . . The world is one now, not many. Individualism is dead . . . For any one to say that they believe in God--it is high treason . . . The Humanity Religion was the only one. Man was God...."
Just a few more developments and the above will not have any fiction left in it—it will be fact foreseen by this British convert-priest long before it had happened. And either OBE or something very much like it will have had an important part in making the prophecy come true.
Toward A Socialist Transformation Of The West
Antonio Gramsci, Italian revolutionist of the early 20th Century, was a prophet of methodology for change, the methodology of ideological and cultural infiltration using all means, and especially education, as the carrier. Gramsci considered "two revolutions," the one waged by Communism in Europe and comprised of uprisings, seizure of power, subversion aimed at destroying existing structures, and transferred to the United States particularly after the collapse of prosperity. This revolution was unwinnable, in Gramsci's thesis, because it had not first won over the mind of the existing order and structure. Only by so doing, he argued, could that order and structure be replaced by the Marxist socialist apparatus.
Gramsci framed the second, and winnable, revolution in terms of "ideological hegemony"—breaking down that hegemony enjoyed by bourgeois-capitalist domination of culture and then "reification" (bringing into concrete reality) of the Marxist view to replace it. The struggle therefore was for nothing less than the total mind and soul of existing culture that the revolutionists wished to overthrow and replace:
"Gramsci's definition of ideological hegemony was . . . broad. It encompassed the whole range of values, attitudes, beliefs, cultural norms, legal precepts, etc., that to one degree or another permeated civil society, that solidified the class structure and the multiple forms of domination that pass through it. The arenas of ideological- cultural transmissions are infinite: the state, legal system, workplace, schools, churches, bureaucracies, cultural activities, the media, the family. Hegemony quite clearly embraces far more than single, well-defined ideologies (e.g., liberalism) that can be said to reflect (and mystify) the interests of dominant classes. In capitalist societies it might include not only the competitive individualism diffused by liberalism but also the social atomization and depoliticization produced by bureaucracy, the fatalism instilled by religion, the state-worship fanned by nationalism, and the sexism which grows out of the family." (emphasis added).
The author of the above words might have been thinking about many aspects of OBE when he wrote the following summary of Gramsci's plan for socialist victory:
"Though its influence would not be felt until years later, Gramscian Marxism contributed immensely to the development of a critical- dialectical theory insofar as it refocused attention on the ideological conditions necessary for a democratic socialist transformation of the West. The concept of hegemony was vital for such a renewal because it encouraged the thematic reintegration of ideology, culture, and consciousness into a Marxian framework without joining the common flight from politics. In doing so, it restored emphasis upon political education as a 'moral intellectual' force that would subvert the legitimating principles of bourgeois society and further lay the foundations of a secular and emancipatory 'integrated culture.' It would be a revolutionary pedagogy firmly grounded in the praxis of everyday political struggles. For Gramsci, this meant a vast theoretical reconstruction of Marxism along a whole range of decidedly 'subjective' problems: the formation of mass consciousness, rule of the intellectuals, nature of the party, and genesis of political strategy."
The modus operandi of OBE could have the following words of Gramsci as a motto:
"Ideas and opinions are not simultaneously 'born' in each individual brain: they have had a center of formation, of irradiation, or dissemination, of persuasion—a group of men, or a single individual even, which has developed them and presented them in the current form of political reality."
In Latin America, Gramsci's "reification" becomes "conscientization" as an instrument of what admirers of Paulo Freire, Gramsci disciple, call "transformational education." This kind of education results (and is intended to result) in such things as: "Seeing things from a new perspective;"The way the non-poor see the world must change;"A new way of perceiving;"New feelings;"New perspectives arise;"It's a different kind of consciousness I bring to the issues;"A complete reshaping of the participants' view of themselves and of their world;"A radical new reorientation is to result in a reordering of values and new ways of acting out those values in individual behavior and in political and social action for change;"A new vulnerability, and openness to questioning impressions previously accepted.... "
William Bean Kennedy's analysis of where and how "transformational education" originates and functions is highly instructive of just what is facing today's world at the hands of some determined ideologues:
"In his classic essay in the Depression years of the 1930's, George Counts asks this question: 'Dare the schools change the social order?' . . . A more modest question: 'Can transformation education make a contribution toward changing the social order?' Obviously the large macrostructural context for these efforts at education for transformation threatens to overwhelm the participants because of the ideological conditioning to which they are subjected and the powerful obstacles to change that they face. Why then do they make the effort?
"Probably the persons who created these models were themselves beneficiaries of some kind of creative and prophetic learning about society and of a vision for the society that came from historical and religious traditions. In different ways they became committed to expenditure of time and energy, to some form of exposure to different environments, to risky experiments."-
Kennedy was commenting on models for bringing about change developed and/or discussed at various consultations and meetings of the Association of Professors and Researchers in Religious Education and the Religious Education Association. Obviously, from the reports in the work produced by Kennedy and others, these educators for the most part are admirers of Freire and hard at work through education to bring about his Marxist goals. That they have chosen the very methods and often the terminology that is general throughout Outcome-Based Education should put all concerned on notice: OBE involves converting all exposed to it to the subjective and often subversive ideas of those few who consider themselves called to pull down structures, overturn values, implant their own ideas, and thereby "reinvent power" and in doing so take control of culture, society, and the state.
Just What Is Wrong With OBE?
Doesn't all education attempt to inculcate values, to bring about outcomes in terms of acceptance of what is taught and the ability to apply it in situations of life? Of course. But there are distinct differences in that exercise between OBE and traditional education.
Traditional education appeals to the intellect first and primarily on the basis of the reasonableness of what is taught, the success it has shown in the past, the universal acceptance of the significance of what is taught, and demonstrated applications of it for culture considered universally as salutary and fruitful.
In this, the education is in keeping with the human nature of both teachers and students. Such education is liberating because it reveals to the student what it means to be human, to interiorize objective reality for the good of others, building on that reality and developing its potential for a society that recognizes genuinely human needs and aspirations.
OBE, on the other hand, pre-establishes outcomes based on the subjective concerns or personal predictions of the future by thinkers and their allies in education who for the most part are seeking radical change. And all too often those "outcomes" are untried, unproved, doubtful in their human significance. They make up what psychologist W. J. Coulson calls "The Foolishness of Futurism." Dr. Coulson quotes William Spady, godfather of OBE, in an interview with Ron Brandt, Executive editor of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (an arm of the National Education Association):
We are starting with what the research suggests about the future and we design down, or design back, from there. We're talking about a systematic process called Strategic Design; determining as well as we can from studying the literature and available data about future trends and conditions that our kids will be facing out there in the world. Once we get a reasonable handle on those conditions we derive from them a set of complex role performance outcomes that represent effective adult functioning; to succeed as adults people will have to be able to do this or that under these and those kinds of conditions."
Dr. Coulson comments in a footnote to that bit of Spadyism:
"How can we get a reasonable handle on what doesn't exist? Our assessment of 'handles' will be as inventive as our assessment of future conditions. Why should we trust the futurists? See, for example Christopher Cerf and Victor Navasky's The Experts (N.Y.: Pantheon, 1984) which lists hundreds of failed predictions about the future."
It is clear why future-minded OBE must wipe out courses about the past—history, literature, etc. Such studies will often contradict the values and the outcomes predicted by the futurists, and in fact reveal the failure of such "inventiveness" in the past. The future is a gamble; predictions may be bets on "wisdom" and "goodness" that in the past have been unmasked as sham. The best of the past is perennial, applying to mankind in all ages; it is impossible to know in advance what will be valuable continuations of such perennial values, and what will be faux gems or echoes of ancient failures. No wonder OBE disdains past wisdoms and ancient learnings. As Dr. Coulson puts it: ". . . OBE aims to defeat academics; schools that adopt it will see excellence disappear, for OBE is fundamentally anti-intellectual."
In being anti-intellectual OBE, betrays the very functioning and faculties which distinguish humans from brutes. It is training, as is done to animals, rather than education which is offered to humans, even young ones. And as with animals who are trained, the response is automatic, not free; the intellect is bypassed, so that the will may be captured, to a great extent through the emotions and conditioned responses. The ignorance of brute animals about what is happening to them in regard to outcome training is purposely applied to OBE.
"First, the OBE facilitator wants to begin with a clean slate, so to speak. That is, (the facilitators) want a mind free from prior knowledge or beliefs.
"Then knowledge and the key to acquiring it (e.g., proper reading instruction) will be withheld.
"After this, they begin the 'process' with Mastery Learning, i.e., stimulus/response, dialectic thinking and assessment-remediation (s/r) and reassessment. (Stimulus/response is the same process that is used to train animals.)
"The children must have their minds cleansed of prior beliefs, attitudes and values. (Of course, if children begin going to school at three months of age, think of the time they'll save later). Altering the child's state of consciousness is one process to accomplish this. . .the programmers call it Meditation, Visualization, or Attention Control.... All this is done under the pretense of teaching the child to relax, or maybe to visualize.... Then the subconscious is fed the relevant information...."
Poisoning The Future
The philosophic genealogy of OBE is as perverse as that of Naziism or Communism. Dr. Coulson identifies the poisoned well of U.S. education to be the mind of the late John Dewey:
"Almost all the growth-oriented educational experiments of this American century have derived from the writings of philosopher John Dewey. Rogers' were no exception; he had come under Dewey's influence as a graduate student at Teachers College, Columbia University, in the 1920's."
Echoing Dewey, Rogers said of a student unfortunate enough to run afoul of OBE:
"His learning will not be confined to the ancient intellectual concepts and specializations. It will not be a preparation for living. It will be, in itself, an experience in living. Feelings of inadequacy, hatred, a desire for power, feelings of love and awe and respect, feelings of fear and dread, unhappiness with parents or with other children—all these will be an open part of his curriculum, as worthy of exploration as history or mathematics. . "
If this makes the students of our age appear as psychological subjects more than thinking and maturing normal human beings, it is no accident. For the evil genius of OBE is, quite clearly, what Dr. Coulson calls "trash psychology":
"'Self-directing growth from within' was . . . the theme of Carl Rogers' earlier, well-known approach to clinical psychology, called client-centered therapy (and earlier yet, nondirective counseling.) But in practice . . . Rogers resisted a long time before yielding to the idea that nondirectiveness in adults suffices to promote learning in children."
Of course, it really doesn't; it promotes subordination of students to the whims, fantasies, "do what I will" excesses of the most daringly and frankly corrupt:
"Well-brought-up children ought to avoid sharing intimacies with poorly brought-up children. Instead, in classroom discussion sessions that I have referred to elsewhere as faux psychotherapy (and that remains a key element in OBE) all children alike are obliged to 'share' and to 'listen'."-
Richard Chadbourne has called Dewey and lapsed priest Ernest Renan, Dewey's senior by a generation and much admired by the American educationist, "Two Organizers of Divinity." Chadbourne wrote:
"Renan's sceptic becomes Dewey's humanist believing only in ideals, morally superior because his ideals correspond to no existing actualities. . "
It is no wonder that one step beyond we find this quite possibly accurate prediction by feminist leader Gloria Steinem:
"By the year 2000 we will, I hope, raise our children to believe in human potential, not God."
All who agree with her can count on OBE to pave the way.
Wheat Ridge, CO
(It is quite clear the highjackers of the school bus do not intend to return the children for ransom. Their purpose is the power to change the children into their own image, in blasphemous imitation of God's creation. They don't intend to return the children at all.) FM
1. Robert Holland, Crisis magazine, Sept., 1995.
2. Candace de Russy, Crisis magazine, June, 1995.
4. Phyllis Schlafly Report, Vol. 29, No. 2, Sept., 1995.
5. Peg Luksik and Pamela Hobbs Hoffecker, Outcome-Based Education: The State's Assaults On Our Children's Values, Huntington House, Lafayette, La., 1995, citing Spady's "It's Time To Take A Close Look At OBE," in Outcomes, Summer, 1992.
6. Luksik and Hoffecker, ibid., p. 29, citing Benjamin Bloom's Taxonomy.
7. Ibid., p. 33.
8. Quoted by Charlotte T. Iserbyte, Back To Basis Reform Or. . . OBE--Skinnerian International Curriculum?, p. 39.
9. Iserbyte, ibid., p. 25 et seq.
10. Letter to colleagues, Oct. 6, 1993.
11. Dennis Laurence Cuddy, Ph.D., Chronology Of Education With Quotable Quotes, Pro Family Forum, Inc., P.O. Box 1059, Highland City, FL, 33846, 1994, pp. 110-11.
12. H.G. Wells, Experiment in Autobiography, quoted by Dr. Cuddy in Road To Socialism And The New World Order, Florida Pro Family Forum, Inc., p. 17.
13.-14. Cuddy, Road To Socialism And The New World Order, pp. 17- 18.
15. Cuddy, Ibid., p. 17.
16. Martin, Rose, Fabian Freeway, quoted by Cuddy, ibid., no page given.
17. Cuddy, op. cit., p. 111.
18. New York Times, March 30. 1994.
19. Frank Morriss, "Scores 'Trash Psychology' For Undermining Learning," The Wanderer, Feb. 29, 1996, p. 1 & 8.
20. Sr. M. Ann Eckhoff, SSND, Education St. Louis, Dec. 1993, quoted in "From The Mail," The Wanderer, July 20, 1995, p. 9.
21. Msgr. Francis Kelly (faculty of Pope John XXIII Seminary, Weston, MA), Pilot, reviewing Catholic Schools and the Common Good, Byk, Lee and Holland Harvard University Press, 1993. 22. Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.; "Our Right To The Truth," Catholic Truth magazine, Jan./Feb., 1996. 23. Msgr. Hugh Benson, The Lord of the World, quoted by Cuddy.
24. Carl Boggs, Two Revolutions: Gramsci And The Dilemmas Of Western Marxism, South End Press, Boston, 1984.
25. Ibid., p. 130.
26. Ibid., p. 190.
27. Ibid., quoting The Modern Prince, p. 209.
28. Evans, Evans and Kennedy, Pedagogies For The Non-Poor, Orbis Books, 1987.
29.-30. William Bean Kennedy, Ibid., pp. 245-6.
31. Paper of the Research Council for Ethnopsychology, P.O. Box 134, Competche, CA, 95427, Feb., 1994.
32. Media By-Pass Magazine, 1994.
33. W. R. Coulson, Ph.D., Research Council For Ethnopsychology, monograph.
34. Carl Rogers, "Interpersonal Relationships: USA 2000," The Journal of Applied Behavioral Sciences, 4 (2) 1968, p. 274.
35.-36. Coulson, op. cit.
37. Thought magazine, Sept., 1949.
38. Saturday Review of Education, Feb. 10, 1973. Taken from Vol. VIII & IX, No. 4 & 1, Winter, 1995/Spring 1996, of the "Forum Quarterly", Newsletter of the Wanderer Forum Foundation.
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