Texas Ed: Comments on Education from Texas

January 16, 2008

You can teach creationism as long as it’s quality creationism

Texas Ed Spectator » Blog Archive » You can teach creationism as long as it’s quality creationism
Texas delays decision on offering science degree at creation college | Dallas Morning News | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas News on Yahoo! | The Dallas Morning News

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board said Tuesday that it will wait until April to decide whether the Institute for Creation Research can offer an online master’s degree in science education. The board was supposed to take up the issue next week.

In November, a team of educators and coordinating board officials visited the institute’s graduate school in Dallas and concluded that it offered a standard science education curriculum. In December, an advisory council recommended that the board approve the institute’s application.

So what does this mean? The team that visited the program said that is was “a standard science education curriculum.” So why is the board delaying? What has the board found out since then to suggest that it might not be teaching at a graduate level? If so, why didn’t the original advisory council indicate the problem before?

See the complete post at my new website www.texasedspectator.com.

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October 26, 2007

Teaching them to think right

MySA.com: Metro | State

Writing research papers with citations, explaining plate tectonics and probing why historians have competing versions of the past.

Such high level skills could become part of the statewide K-12 public school curriculum if state education officials adopt a draft of college readiness standards released Thursday by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

You mean that the Texas State Board of Education is willing to give it’s emphasis on indoctrination for the development of actual thinking skills? You can read more on the Board’s attempt to control “doctrine” here.

I can already see it though. McLeroy and his fellow conservatives could use this as the springboard for “teaching the controversy” about evolution and intelligent design. Somehow, it wouldn’t be appropriate to “teach the controversy” over the role of slavery in the US or something like the internment of Japanese Americans in World War II. Nor, I suspect, would he be eager to teach the different approaches to reducing teenage pregnancy.

And what does he mean by the following:

MySA.com: Metro | State

“We really don’t need to do any of this for our advantaged (youth) and high achievers,” said Don McLeroy, chairman of the State Board of Education. “I look at it from the aspect of what do the disadvantaged, low achievers need? Those are the ones we want to pull up.”

Does he have evidence that students from well-to-do districts aren’t showing up in any of the colleges remedial classes? If he does, he better show it otherwise he has made the same sort of assumption about the value of money that got our former TEA commissioner to leave office.

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August 2, 2007

No more dropping college courses

Filed under: education, Texas, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board — texased @ 11:56 am

I don’t get it.

Legislation limits college courses that may be dropped

The 80th Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 1231 limiting the number of courses an institution of higher learning may allow an undergraduate student to drop. SB 1231 will affect any student enrolled as a first-time freshman at Lamar University and all other Texas universities and colleges, beginning in the fall 2007 semester.

The bill requires the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to adopt and enforce new rules established in the bill. The coordinating board defines a “dropped course” as a course an undergraduate student at an institution of higher education has enrolled in for credit but did not complete.

The new rules prohibit an institution of higher education from allowing a student to drop more than six courses during their undergraduate program, including any courses a transfer student has dropped at another university.

Is the only consequence that the student get a failing grade? What’s the purpose? Force students to fail more classes, lowering their gpa so that they drop out and don’t use anymore state resources? Now I know that there are students that will drop a class to preserve a gpa so that they can get into graduate school but surely they must be a minority?

Don’t most students have to maintain a certain number of hours to keep their financial aid or full-time student status? I know one semester I dropped both government classes after the first day of class and added two English instead. Would that have counted?

Is this supposed to save the state money somehow?

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