As alarm about the problems, dangers, and poor research related to social emotional learning (SEL) spreads, prominent new voices are entering the fray to speak against it. Bob Kellogg at One News Now recently discussed SEL’s harm to parental autonomy and the academic dilution it causes, while Max Eden, senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, wrote in National Review about the problematic SEL curriculum adopted by New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio for that city’s schools. The One News Now article referenced the op-ed that Jane Robbins and I wrote for The Federalist, based on our white paper for the
As this nation continues to contend with major social and political discord and violence, perhaps the education world is turning to the roots of faith present before and since America’s founding. For the first time, the 51st annual Phi Delta Kappa (PDK) poll on public education issues included questions on teaching Bible classes in public schools. Given that PDK is a secular organization, the results were surprising: Specifically, among all adults, 58% say schools should offer Bible studies as an elective, and 6% say Bible studies should be required, totaling 64% who favor Bible classes in one of these formats.
As chronicled in multiple articles (also here and here) and the Pioneer Institute white paper authored by attorney Jane Robbins and myself, efforts to impose government-determined norms for the attitudes, values, and beliefs of the nation’s children beginning in preschool are becoming disturbingly relentless. Despite lots of concerns by Ohio parents and pro-family state school board members, as well as troubling data provided by Education Liberty Watch, (summarized here) and activism by Eagle Forum and Concerned Women for America, the full Ohio state board adopted statewide SEL standards by an 11-6 vote. Although there were promises made that students, teachers,
Despite all evidence and even advice from proponents to be careful in the implementation, supporters of social emotional learning (SEL) standards, assessments, and data collection are following the same playbook as those who imposed Common Core standards with little discussion or buy-in from parents and teachers. As recently discussed, the full Ohio State Board of Education (OSBOE) is preparing to adopt statewide social emotional learning (SEL) standards at its meeting tomorrow after a subcommittee adopted them in May. Arkansas is also imposing new SEL standards with minimal discussion between the SBOE and the public. Thanks to Ohio SBOE members like
A committee of the Ohio State Board of Education is scheduled to vote on advancing a proposal to the full state board to implement statewide social emotional learning (SEL) standards this coming Tuesday, May 14th. This is part of a national movement to psychologize education, falsely advertised as improving academic achievement and preventing violence and suicide. The problems with this approach are myriad. They include the following points (with more information available from the Pioneer Institute, as well as this list of concerns for Ohio and numerous writings in this space, such as here): SEL would further erode the fundamental
A recent article by Joy Pullmann in The Federalist demonstrates just how nosy and invasive “school climate surveys” have become. These surveys are now a cornerstone of the implementation of social-emotional learning (SEL) programs in the nation’s public schools and have also been found in Common Core-aligned state tests and (illegally) in the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). The surveys make use of extremely vague and subjective questions, such as these examples from the Massachusetts state test: As noted by Pullmann, another such survey used in the Austin (Texas) Independent School District usurps parental autonomy and asks the particularly
Not apparently content with the extent of invasive personality profiling discussed last year, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is expanding it psychological profiling to 5,000 young children each in the U.S., England, and Estonia. The assessment is titled the International Early Learning Survey (IELS). Dubbed by some as “Baby PISA” (after the Program for International Student Assessment, an international assessment for fifteen-year-olds also conducted by OECD), this assessment is disturbingly comprehensive in the data it seeks to mine from young children and their families. Here is a description of the assessment in 2016 and early 2017 in
The Pioneer Institute, a national leader in the fight against Common Core and other horrible corporatist and global education reform ideas, today released a new study titled “Social-Emotional Learning: K–12 Education as New Age Nanny State.” The study — which I was honored to co-author with attorney and researcher Jane Robbins and Dr. Kevin Ryan, a professor emeritus of Boston University, who wrote the foreword — came to many important conclusions. Here are some of them highlighted in Pioneer’s press release and video: Proponents of SEL call for focusing less on academic content and knowledge in schools, and more