105 Peavey Rd, Ste 116
Chaska, MN 646-0646

Assessed for Bias

September 26, 2002

(See responses received to this e-mail: "What They Call Tolerance")

On Monday, September 16, Mahtomedi, Minnesota High School gave high school freshmen boys and girls an "assessment for bias." Students were asked, are you biased toward straight people?

Tolerance and bias are the new core curriculum, not knowledge- based academics.

Academics is becoming incidental to education. The core curriculum of the new education system is diversity, bias, environmentalism, political activism, reconstructing history, promoting the United Nations, group actions, anger management, sex education, working together, challenging students' values, community service, and training for a job. Knowledge-based education is at a functional literacy level, measured by the Basic Skills Tests and the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCAs). The MCAs are also the assessment system for the values and attitudes required by the new federal curriculum.

Bias as core curriculum is so institutionalized that, in the Mahtomedi Freshman Seminar, no parents were informed. No permission was requested. No eyebrows were to be raised.

As one student reported that night, "Dad, you'll never guess what I had to watch." She explained how she had been subjected to two videos about homosexuality.

Her description: "They were gross! I don't want to have to see stuff like that again."

This young woman's response would undoubtedly be labelled intolerant and biased.

The Mahtomedi High School freshmen assignment was to watch these videos. They were then assigned to complete an assessment to determine if they "harbored hidden biases toward straight people, or against gay people." The assessment is posted at Tolerance.Org web site, at tolerance.org. Take a look through that site, and consider what our 9th graders are being subjected to in the name of "education."

The assessment does not accommodate a separation between one's moral beliefs and how one might treat ANY person. It makes no distinction between "preference" and "bias," though the test claims to measure bias.

Little explanation is given to the demographic (optional) questions. "Do you have a PREFERENCE for gay people?" it opens. What is the 14 year old to take from that question? Are we talking sexuality or friendship? Who's to say?

One parent took the test twice, giving the same answers each time. Once he described himself as "straight, and very conservative." His results were, "SHOW A STRONG AUTOMATIC PREFERENCE FOR STRAIGHT PEOPLE."

The next time, he skipped the demographic questions but gave identical responses. This time, his results were: "LITTLE OR NO AUTOMATIC PREFERENCE." Is a teen to interpret that to mean that he or she is bisexual? Not biased? It doesn't say.

Foisting homosexual propaganda and personal sexual assessments on unsuspecting 14 year-olds without the knowledge or consent of parents is, unfortunately, what diversity and tolerance mean in the double-speak of today's education.

Letter Threatens Mahtomedi Students for Objection

Was the assignment a requirement? According to the teacher, the assignment was for all in the class, and if any had a problem, they were to come forward to her personally. Some students decided not to complete a follow-up writing assignment. According to the students, extra credit was given to those who would participate. In either case, the assignment can't be described as voluntary.

Was the teacher ever informed that parental notification might be necessary for such material? No, no one ever discussed the matter of parental notification or permission with the teacher. Nor were students allowed to express their disgust for the assignment. A follow-up letter from the teacher to her class stated:

"Some of you expressed the feeling that this is not an appropriate topic to study in school, and I feel the need to reiterate the purpose of this unit."

"One of the goals for Freshman Seminar is to discuss tolerance. Gay and lesbian people are often the targets of intolerant behavior...which we witnessed in the Matthew Sheppard video."

"I am also aware that some of you may have chosen to address your distaste simply because you did not want to write this essay. I know who you are, and I want you to know that this will not be accepted."

The letter went on to describe her disappointment in them, describing them as "immature."

The distinctions between "hate" and "bias" (a negative opinion) are entirely blurred on the "tolerance" website. It's hard to imagine a young person being capable of distinguishing the difference on the basis of their material.

Yet the teacher stated in her letter to students, "this unit is not designed to change your opinion of what is right and wrong." In this entire assignment, "bias" is deliberately and emotionally linked to the torture and murder of Matthew Sheppard.

The teacher stated that she was simply "following the school's curriculum." Curriculum? How much are we willing to allow our children's innocence and values to be violated in the name of "curriculum?"

U.S. Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA) [General Education Provisions, Part F, Section 1061]

Federal law requires school districts that receive federal funds to have policies allowing parents to inspect surveys created by a third party before the surveys are administered to students.

Federal law requires school districts that receive federal funds to have policies that allow parents to inspect instructional material used as part of the students' educational curriculum.

Federal law requires school districts that receive federal funds to provide notice to parents at least annually, at the beginning of the school year, of their policies for parental inspection of surveys and curriculum.

The school district must offer an opportunity for parents to opt their child out of a survey containing items relating to sex behavior or attitudes.

The school district must offer an opportunity for parents to opt out of a survey containing items relating to religious beliefs of a student.

The question is, do these federal requirements apply to all surveys and curriculum of schools that accept federal money, or do these requirements only apply to surveys and curriculum that are specifically funded by federal money?

Minnesota's Profile of Learning, however, was implemented with federal grant money to fulfill the federal requirements of Goals 2000.

Goal 3 of Goals 2000 states:

"all students will be knowledgeable about the diverse cultural heritage of this Nation and about the world community."

Minnesota complies with Goal 3 by the Graduation Standard called, "Diverse Perspectives." Parents in many states and school districts have protested the diversity requirements as promoting homosexuality. (See "Forcing Diversity in the Classroom," )

Isn't this a use of federal Goals 2000 money?

To receive any federal Title I money (for disadvantaged students) states had to comply with Goals 2000 restructuring of 1994 (one mandate being diversity).

Isn't this a use of federal money?

Minnesota's "Content Framework for People and Cultures Standards" begins with a quote from the Goals 2000 mandate.(p. 1-5)

It states:
"By tracing the alignment of Minnesota's content standards through the national standards for each area, educators and curriculum specialists, parents and the general public will be able to see how the content and process expectations of Minnesota's standards reflect national expectations." (p. 22)

Every state's students are also assessed on these "national standards" by the national test, the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) which "verifies" all state assessments.

[For a further discussion of the required federal curriculum, see Eagle Forum's website.]

Diversity is most definitely a federal mandate, and it is required at the risk of losing federal money. Why wouldn't the Protection of Pupil Rights apply to these invasive surveys and curriculum?

Some states have passed their own Protection of Pupil Rights Act. New Jersey recently accomplished just that.
New Jersey PPRA Legislation, Court Case, and Ed. Dept.
New Jersey Parental Rights Signed into Law

In the meantime, file a parental consent form at your child's school. Download a sample form. Modify it as needed. HURRY! Things aren't getting much better!

Michael J. Chapman
Board of Directors
Maple River Education Coalition


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