I'm a teacher in a public high school in upstate NY. Yglesias is too sanguine.
He says, "In D.C., I don’t see anything particularly nutty happening in the classrooms." He's not looking hard enough. On Columbus Day one year, I mentioned Little Beard's massacre and gruesome torture at present-day Cuylerville, NY. The history teacher heard some students talking about it and told them that it never happened and I was making it up. Another history teacher uses modern Afghanistan as his model of a capitalist economy. I have a Banned Book shelf in my classroom with actually banned books; the librarian told my kids that those books shouldn't be in school and weren't in her library for Banned Books Week because "Banned Books doesn't refer to books that are taken out of circulation for the right reasons." The teachers union reps at two different schools have told me to stop wearing ties because it's not in the contract. NYS exams for all HS math exams require only a 30% raw score to pass, and half the test is four-choice multiple choice questions. I once was told in writing, in an official 504 plan, to give a kid a stapler to let him 'self-stimulate' even though the kid had a history of attacking other students with a stapler. I've seen police officers at an all-school assembly tell the students that hate speech is not protected under the First Amendment. I could go on. I've talked about some of these things in my ADK Homeroom podcast. Honestly, if Yglesias does not see nutty things in classrooms, he isn't looking hard enough.
Very few understand how much we spend per kids. I had lunch with a friend who had just purchased a bunch of pencils and note books for his daughter's public school classroom.
"It's a shame the schools cannot afford even pencils for the kids...they sent around a note asking for parents to donate supplies so the teachers didn't have to buy them with their modest salaries"
"How much do you think they spend per kid at your daughter's school?" I asked
"Good question. But I have no idea"
"Try $16,000. A class of 27 kids has a budget of over $400K. You really think they can't afford pencils? You are being played..."
I could see the wheels turning.
- [https://abigailshrier.substack.com/p/how-activist-teachers-recruit-kids "How Activist Teachers Recruit Kids:
Leaked Documents and Audio from the California Teachers Association Conference Reveal Efforts to Subvert Parents on Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation,"] Abigail Shrier (2021):
Last month, the California Teachers Association (CTA) held a conference advising teachers on best practices for subverting parents, conservative communities and school principals on issues of gender identity and sexual orientation. Speakers went so far as to tout their surveillance of students’ Google searches, internet activity, and hallway conversations in order to target sixth graders for personal invitations to LGBTQ clubs, while actively concealing these clubs’ membership rolls from participants’ parents.