A Pimple On The Ass Of (the) Humanities

 

This is one of my favorite quotes from an old high school teacher, William Armstrong, fits Brooklyn College. They have promoted Timothy Shortell to a position where he can deny tenure to other professors.Now they have given him the tool to do so.

From the New York Sun

Brooklyn College’s School of Education has begun to base evaluations of aspiring teachers in part on their commitment to social justice, raising fears that the college is screening students for their political views.

The School of Education at the CUNY campus initiated last fall a new method of judging teacher candidates based on their “dispositions,” a vogue in teacher training across the country that focuses on evaluating teachers’ values, apart from their classroom performance.

So now, when they do not like a professors politics, god forbid he goes to church and is a member of the NRA, they can use this to make that professor lose their job.

Critics of the assessment policy warned that aspiring teachers are being judged on how closely their political views are aligned with their instructor’s. Ultimately, they said, teacher candidates could be ousted from the School of Education if they are found to have the wrong dispositions.

“All of these buzz words don’t seem to mean anything until you look and see how they’re being implemented,” a prominent history professor at Brooklyn College, Robert David Johnson, said. “Dispositions is an empty vessel that could be filled with any agenda you want,” he said.

But what is even more scarier about this, is that the this concept is sanctioned at the highest levels.

Driving the new policies at the college and similar ones at other education schools is a mandate set forth by the largest accrediting agency of teacher education programs in America, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. That 51-year-old agency, composed of 33 professional associations, says it accredits 600 colleges of education – about half the country’s total. Thirty-nine states have adopted or adapted the council’s standards as their own, according to the agency.

In 2000 the council introduced new standards for accrediting education schools. Those standards incorporated the concept of dispositions, which the agency maintains ought to be measured, to sort out teachers who are likeliest to be successful. In a glossary, the council says dispositions “are guided by beliefs and attitudes related to values such as caring, fairness, honesty, responsibility, and social justice.”

To drive home the notion that education schools ought to evaluate teacher candidates on such parameters as attitude toward social justice, the council issued a revision of its accrediting policies in 2002 in a Board of Examiners Update. It encouraged schools to tailor their assessments of dispositions to the schools’ guiding principles, which are known in the field as “conceptual frameworks.” The council’s policies say that if an education school “has described its vision for teacher preparation as ‘Teachers as agents of change’ and has indicated that a commitment to social justice is one disposition it expects of teachers who can become agents of change, then it is expected that unit assessments include some measure of a candidate’s commitment to social justice.”

This is truly scary, as it sets up a national criteria to be politically correct to be a professor, and those wishing to be professors that are not politically correct would find a formal avenue excluding them.

If this does happen, I think the time would be right to open a conservative college. I know that is where I would aim my children at.

But Brooklyn College, looking to be the leader in  the Leftward tilt of the campus, has embraced this philosophy on all levels. For this they earn the Pimple on the Ass of Humanity Award.

Posted May 31, 2005 by
Academy, General | no comments


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