Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

Historic fail? Greatest Americans missing from proposed curriculum

Posted by on Aug. 7, 2014 at 8:04 PM
  • 50 Replies

New history curriculum standards proposed for top high school students leave out such American icons as Benjamin Franklin and Martin Luther King, Jr., paint colonists as bigots and gloss over the Greatest Generation's fight to save the world from Nazi Germany, according to conservative education activists who want the framework delayed — and perhaps scrapped altogether.

An open letter circulated by conservative education activists is calling on The College Board to delay implementing new Advanced Placement U.S. History guidelines, saying a “rising tide of opposition” believes the curriculum will take the nation’s classrooms in a bad direction.

The Aug. 4 letter, which is addressed to David Coleman, president/CEO of the New York-based nonprofit, claims the new 98-page curriculum is a “dramatic departure” from the five-page outline previously used by teachers and students and offers a consistently negative view of Americans as oppressors and exploiters.

“The framework ignores the rise of democratic institutions such as the House of Burgesses and New England town meetings,” the letter reads. “It also omits the colonists’ growing commitment to religious freedom and the emergence of a pluralistic society that lacked an entrenched aristocracy.”

What’s missing from the curriculum, according to a former public school teacher and author of two Advanced Placement prep guides, is mention of John Winthrop and his “city upon a hill” sermon as one of the key early instances of American exceptionalism and references to Roger Williams and the birth of religious toleration.

"What you’re going to find is our nation’s founders portrayed as bigots who developed a belief in white superiority that was, in turn, derived from a strong belief in British racial and cultural superiority."

- Larry Krieger, retired teacher and test preparation expert

“And you’re not going to find Thomas Jefferson and the House of Burgesses and the cradle of democracy either,” said Larry Krieger, who retired in 2005 after more than three decades in the classroom. “And finally, you’re not going to find Benjamin Franklin and the birth of American entrepreneurialism.”

Instead, students exposed to the curriculum — roughly 500,000 annually nationwide, many of whom will take the class as sophomores and juniors — will find a narrative laden with tyranny and subjugation.

“What you’re going to find is our nation’s founders portrayed as bigots who developed a belief in white superiority that was, in turn, derived from a strong belief in British racial and cultural superiority,” Krieger told FoxNews.com.

Krieger, who specialized in the Advanced Placement U.S. history course during his years as a teacher, most recently in New Jersey, participated in a conference call Monday with other activists seeking to delay implementation of the new curriculum for at least one year.

Jane Robbins, an attorney with the American Principles Project in Washington, also took part in the call. She said ongoing discussions are happening with educational officials in at least seven states to delay the curriculum or block it altogether.

“There are conversations going on with members of several of the state boards,” Robbins said, including Texas, Colorado and North Carolina.

Texas State Board of Education Member Ken Mercer, R-San Antonio, reportedly asked the board last month to delay the curriculum while state officials determine whether it violates a 2013 law banning the reaching of Common Core standards, a national initiative adopted by 45 states detailing what students from kindergarten through 12th grade should learn upon graduation of each grade level.

Conversations with critics like Krieger and Mercer are ongoing, as The College Board tries to "find solutions" regarding the controversial curriculum, a spokesperson for the organization told FoxNews.com.

"College Board leaders continue to meet with individuals who have concerns about the redesign to listen, solicit feedback and find solutions," a spokesperson wrote in an email Thursday.

Robbins, meanwhile, said her biggest issue with the curriculum is how it portrays Americans as a thoroughly pugnacious bunch.

“It presents American history as one long story of groups in conflict,” she told FoxNews.com. “It does not focus on individuals at all. The idea seems to be that the only force in history worth considering is the group identity — and all of these groups are in constant conflict according to this particular narrative.”

Robbins continued: “There’s no understanding of what makes this country great.”

Christy Armbruster, of Elko, Nev., detailed to the Elko Daily Free Press why she thinks the framework should be opposed, saying it curtailed its summary of World War II far too short.

“There is no mention of Hitler, the Holocaust, D-Day or other historic battles,” Armbruster wrote the newspaper. “Neither is there any mention of the heroism and sacrifice made by so many American soldiers, including my grandfather!”

by on Aug. 7, 2014 at 8:04 PM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
sweet-a-kins
by Emerald Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 8:52 PM
5 moms liked this
According to conservative education activists lol
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
quickbooksworm
by Silver Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 9:00 PM
I find this very hard to believe. Is it satire? My sarcasm receptor isnt working today.
yourspecialkid
by Platinum Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 9:09 PM
3 moms liked this

 I can believe some curriculum would leave this stuff out.  I have seen a lot of stuff left out....one of the reasons we homeschool.

momtimesx4
by Silver Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 9:25 PM
2 moms liked this

If it is not on the test, it won't be taught.  Teach the test.

heresjohnny
by Bronze Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 9:57 PM
1 mom liked this
I'm not shocked, or even outraged. Our country has a little over 500 years worth of history, a lot of stuff happening simultaneously, and only 45 minutes worth of class time to teach it. As the years go on and more stuff happens, a few key points need adjusting. As it is, I think even the curriculum when I was in school was weak and inefficient. Most of what I know about history was learned outside of the classroom, as an adult, during my free time, and out of sheer curiosity. There are stacks of encyclopedias worth of American history, let alone world history. Who's to say which stories are more important than the others?
stacymomof2
by Ruby Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 10:09 PM
I find it really hard to believe that they don't expect any knowledge of the Holocaust or civil rights. Do you have anything besides this article to prove that?
I'm mobile and googled quick but it only brought up reposts of thia article, no actual info
latashac
by Bronze Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 10:11 PM
1 mom liked this

I am not surprised, people have been trying to rewrite or omit history for some time now. They only want taught what they believe is worthy.

PinkButterfly66
by Gold Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 10:26 PM
2 moms liked this

Kids get US History in middle school and they get it again in high school with World History and then a 3rd time with US History.  I think after having American History twice they already know who Benjamin Franklin and Martin Luther King Jr are.  They also get US history in grade school.  They get WWII, Hitler, Holocaust, etc. in middle school And again in World History in high school.  I'm pretty sure that the books that they have for US History will have Ben, Martin, Aldolf, and all the rest but the focus of the lessons will involve more critical thinking instead of regurgitating out facts.  

http://media.collegeboard.com/digitalServices/pdf/ap/2013advances/Key-Changes-to-AP-US-History-Oct2013.pdf

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/patte-barth/ap-history-standards_b_5639359.html

littlemum41
by Silver Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 11:09 PM
1 mom liked this
This is BS.
Not true. Where do these crappy items come from ?
Is it more conservative babbling about Government Schools, mind control,etc.?
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
Momniscient
by Ruby Member on Aug. 7, 2014 at 11:42 PM
Lol.
Oh lord.
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

close Join now to connect to
other members!
Connect with Facebook or Sign Up Using Email

Already Joined? LOG IN