Intrinsic and Collective: Race and Restorative Justice as Visions to Upgrade the Brain’s Hardware and Software

If I have ever in my life said the trite phrase “may we live in interesting times,” I take it back. Hopefully, we are not all suffering too much from “What Next?” exhaustion because we have some interesting patterns of honesty peeking through all these released statements and visions that I am going to piece together. Especially since the visions predate George Floyd’s tragic death and the graphic visuals surrounding it and seem to have been waiting for the right incident necessitating transformative societal change as the remedy. There’s a new book coming out this summer called Narrative Change: How Changing the Story can Transform Society, Business, and Ourselves and its author pitches it this way:

Hansen reveals how narratives shape our everyday lives and how we can construct new narratives to enact positive change…Narrative Change provides an unparalleled window into an innovative model of change while telling powerful stories of a fight against injustice. It reminds us that what matters most for any organization, community, or person is the story we tell about ourselves–and the most effective way to shake things up is by changing the story.

On May 27 this article came out and systemic or structural racism can be considered the ‘right problem’ to generate the “kind of reimagining aimed at opening the door for real systemic change.” Except it was clearly written before Mr Floyd died. Its push for education to create ‘intrinsic’ change within each individual and thus generate a ‘we’ culture and society fits with so many of the statements issued after that video went viral and the protests, and then riots, began. It hypes ‘flourishing’ for all students as the goal of education, with an emphasis now on “What do we want for children we care about?,” instead of transmissive content acquisition. This new visionputs the emphasis on ‘possibility’ and new kinds of ‘created’ citizens:

The conventional K-12 system has learners spend about 14,000 hours in school. If our future selves are created out of who we practice being today, as both Aristotle and modern neuroscience tell us, then the habits and ways of being they practice in school will last a lifetime. These include habits of how students relate to themselves, their learning, and the world; and, habits of how they relate to others, co-create, and participate in communities.

That vision of thinking of education as a ‘design problem’ for the needed new hardware and software instilled in students as habits of mind fits right in with the following statements I culled to show the consistent, almost magical, drumbeat. From my alma mater, after a tie-in to the controversial SEL curriculum Facing History and Ourselves that has a tag already here at ISC, came the helpful nugget that “Education has the power to help us understand the most effective ways to discern what is needed and to do what is right.” Let’s classify that as a software adjustment, if not rewrite. makes the point that:

Calls to ‘say their names’–George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, David McAtee, Michael Lorenzo Dean–have been one of many pleas from the communities across this country for all of us to acknowledge the justified anger and frustration millions who have to live in a society where their rights to safety, justice, and equitable opportunities for success are not guaranteed due to the color of their skin.

Long sentence, but common skin color is the constant focus, never individual behavior or, more importantly, misbehavior. Those wouldn’t call for the desired transformations in other ‘hardware’ systems beyond the individual mind and personality. It wouldn’t merit “creating a learner-centered system that has social justice as its centerpiece.” Here’s one example prior to Mr Floyd’s death, before it could be added to the list of justifications for wholesale change.  told us:

there is nothing natural about disasters because their impact is the result of the way society is structured. Viewed from this lens, the goal of policymakers during the pandemic should not be to reactively restore the status quo. Instead, the goal should be to proactively restructure society, so we are all more resilient the next time disaster strikes.

Resilience sounds intrinsic and restructuring society certainly seems like the collective ‘we’.  To appreciate why the mind and personality may the foundations for the desired change, but they are merely the tools for changes to other ‘systems’ we have ChangeLab Solutions on June 3 informing us that:

Everyone has the right to be healthy. However, communities cannot be healthy if they are the target of racist policies. Unjust laws, policies, and practices have shaped the physical, economic, and social environment over many generations and perpetuated unhealthy communities. We must change the systems that perpetuate inequity and create new laws, policies, and practices that remedy the past and institutionalize fairness and justice so that all communities can achieve optimal health.

ASCD put out a statement on June 5 that they would be working with their “more than 80,000 education leaders from school districts around the country to ensure that education lays the foundation for the change that is necessary.” They are assembling resources

to help educators reflect on and address these challenges with their students; identify their own and their communities’ biases; and to assist them to find the words and learnings that enable them to help their students to makes sense of unconscionable murders and other, less visible forms of racism and bias…We will also expand the ways to support educators to provide them with more content focused on advancing equity…

Education Reimagined put out the statement that as an organization they stand with “Black Lives Matter” (the entity) and that they are

firmly committed to creating a socially just world by doing our part to transform the education system to one that honors each child and unleashes their power and potential to lead fulfilling lives. And we know a true societal shift will require the collective contributions of those committed to dismantling systemic racism.

Finally we had this statement from Harvard’s Graduate School of Education telling us that “white people need to go far beyond the usual lip service to racial justice.” No wonder everyone seems to want to get away from a transmissive vision for education with all these calls for wholesale change. Apparently “those of us who are white need to commit to…the humble work of allowing our views and sense of reality to be altered by what we hear.” At least as long as it is an authorized narrative that one is hearing and not that Mr Floyd had fentanyl in his body at the time of his death and tested positive for covid or that Michael Brown never had his hands up saying “Don’t shoot” and attacked a police officer instead according to uncontradicted testimony from numerous witnesses. Those kind of factual statements are currently the source of ire against a faculty member at Cornell Law School.

After telling us what we must come to recognize as white adults so that we will “recognize systemic forms of oppression,” whatever the actual underlying facts, the Making Caring Common Project statement pivots to the

crucial importance of talking about race and racism with our children. We need to raise our children to understand the history of race and racism in this country [using Big Ideas as lenses presumably instead of facts] and to recognize and fight racism in all its modern forms. That means talking to children in developmentally appropriate ways about why people are protesting and engaging children’s questions. It means explaining to them that at the core of a just society is the understanding that each one of us is responsible for all of us.

So tragic events and misreported narratives get used to pitch Uncle Karl’s undisputed vision for what he described as little ‘c’ communism on American school children as necessary to end structural oppression and systemic racism.  The hardware metaphor came from this May 20 post while Mr Floyd was still with us. Its vision to “design learning experiences that pique interest and cultivate discovery,” while abandoning “our singular obsession with curricular content” merited inclusion in the Black Lives Matter vision issued later and quoted above. I guess protests and ‘murders’ do pique interest. That article points out that curricular content is transactional, not transformative, and thus misplaces the fulcrum of what education can be leveraged to change. After all, there “isn’t enough information sharing in the world that will provide the force needed to launch young people into dynamic and fulfilling lives.”

Finally, one of the bibliographies from the last post referenced the 2019 The Little Book of Race and Restorative Justice: Black Lives, Healing, and US Social Transformation that caught my eye as I have attended Restorative Justice programs put on jointly by urban school and police departments. I knew the use of the program was an issue in Broward County when the tragic Parkland shooting occurred. I didn’t know that its author Fania Davis was Angela Davis’ sister nor how often she speaks to educators and at ed schools. She is apparently committed to the SEL practices I have described and the vision I termed Tranzi OBE in my book Credentialed to Destroy because she believes that “Western knowledge systems, based on an ethos of separateness, competition, and subordination, have contributed to pervasive crises that today imperil our future.”

Davis prefers “alternative worldviews that bring healing to our world.” Like what Making Caring Common has in mind? Probably as she wants a focus “on repairing and rebuilding in order to strengthen relationships and bring social harmony.” What I recognize as Uncle Karl’s vision for what he called the Human Development Society, the admitted CPUSA member attributes to the indigenous values of justice from Africa and its communitarian culture. As I have said before, same destination, but varying rationales and sales pitches. Fania’s book details all the dialogical, positive psychology, and holistic, intrapersonal practices she wants pushed by school districts. Fits right in with what was written above before there was any Pandemic or this year’s ‘murders’ meriting wholesale changes. She wants  practices aimed at “creating school cultures of care, connectivity, and healing.”

The last chapter was titled “Toward a Racial Reckoning: Imagining a Truth Process for Police Violence” with the following epigraph:

Behold the bright sun of transformation and a new beginning.

That strikes me as where schools and institutions want to take us now as a society, and as individuals. Already planned for and just waiting for the right visuals to light the wick of outrage so that only wholesale change at every level can be an acceptable remedy. We will come back to this in the next post as I am running long, but this is what Fania wrote in the 2019 book:

While the nation abolished slavery, the racial terror at its essence continues to haunt us. We are caught in history’s pain, living it again and again. Until we engage in a collective process to face and transform this pain, we will perpetually reenact it.

It’s been a while since we discussed ‘deliberative democracy’ but it still has a tag. Last week the OECD moved to institute it all over the world to take Democracy beyond the ballot box and create Innovative Citizenship.

I don’t think any of this is coincidental, do you?


190 thoughts on “Intrinsic and Collective: Race and Restorative Justice as Visions to Upgrade the Brain’s Hardware and Software

  1. Per the pretty impeccable scholar, Mathew Rafael Johnson, Ms. Davis is a ‘cut-out’. Johnson correctly observes that her doctoral degree was accomplished at a German university that likely had very few faculty on staff who were sufficiently fluent in English to guide her research, or to vet her dissertation.

    This scenario reminds me of what I reported of doctoral students attached to a Japanese university and international business study programs, i.e. manufactured, reverse-engineered research projects.

    Johnson further states that Davis’s books are really just polemical speeches memorialized in text, and do not evidence academic skills commensurate with her title. Her teaching roles were accomplished in the typical soft-social science SJW fields…and, these roles were only minimally interrupted by her stint on the FBI’s most-wanted list, a fugitive from justice…and, her very OBVIOUS involvement in the commissioning of the capital crimes that occurred in the Marin County Courthouse.

    One would think that if TPTB were actually serious about advancing the rights of Black people, they would elevate as movement leaders individuals who had actually achieved something meaningful beyond playing a role and becoming a millionaire in doing so. This is what I mean about the lack of imagination and good intent in the scripting of these things. Of all the marvelously talented, high-achieving Black leaders out there, WHY this one? I am guessing that CA was the beta test and the laboratory
    and, remains so; that the original architects of this thing are as addled-brained as is Joe Biden.

    I also learned from scholar Johnson, that Trotsky was an actual billionaire (today’s dollars’) at the time of his untimely death, as were other members of his cohort. Think in a later day of Castro, and his designer watches, and multiple luxurious residences. Communists do pretty well in this world.

    • Fania was “en route to Canada to board a ship bound for Cuba for two months, with hundreds of other members of the third Venceremos Brigade, to plant fruit trees in solidarity with the Cuban Revolution” was Angela was arrested. She claims she didn’t do it. That is who teachers are being instructed by to get to Racial Equity.

      She hypes Ubuntu, which I remember being the focus of an International Ed Conference within the last 5 years. If Restorative Justice in the schools is the remedy and it is “seeking to transform social structures, institutions, and individuals” well, of course, there’s a reason we can see the function of Tranzi OBE when its is called for in a classroom and Positive School Climate in the schools. Explains Obama’s July 2012 Executive Order imposing PSC on all public schools in the US. Fania states that

      The skilled gardener tends to both plants and the larger ecosystem. The success of restorative justice depends on seeing ourselves not only as agents of individual transformation, but also as drivers of systems transformation.

      I also found Fania’s push of Study Circles to promote “healthy social relationships and social structures” to be interesting as we saw those pushed in Sweden by their socialists, in the Episcopal Church materials we covered after Bishop Michael Curry’s Firebrand speech at the Harry/Markle wedding, and I also saw them pushed at the Highlander School where Rosa Parks trained. She also pushes “developing individual mind-body awareness practices.” I saw on its website that BLM was pushing a conversation with Deepak Chopra on healing practices. There also appear to be ties with the Kellogg Foundation, which goes to their Logic Model of what constitutes ‘evidence-based’ practices in education. It would pick up Fania Davis’ work then.

      We have encountered john powell before working with Linda Darling-Hammond and also other initiatives. Will try to locate those posts.

    • I found the john a powell post here

      This quote from that post is eerily prescient:

      Apparently there was a 2002 Chapel Hill conference. In the book that resulted laying out the blueprint for the future, john a powell, who was a featured speaker at President Obama’s Building One America conference in 2011 that I wrote about here lays out his vision for true integration. It basically marries communitarianism with Regionalism. It envisions more than breaking the unitary self. Trashing of the entirety of Western culture up to now is more the ambition of this very influential man with access to political levers and coffers at the highest levels.

      “[T]rue integration requires community-wide efforts to dismantle that culture and to create a more inclusive educational system and a more inclusive society in which all individuals and groups have real, equal opportunities to build and participate in the democratic process.

      True integration in our schools, then, is transformative rather than assimilative. That is, while desegregation assimilates minorities into the mainstream, true integration transforms the mainstream. . . it recognizes that cultures are not static but are constantly evolving and that all students benefit from a truly equal and just system of education.

      To achieve this result, true integration addresses the issues of achievement, opportunity, community, and relevancy at a systemic level. In this process, institutions, communities, and individuals are fundamentally changed . . .Mandatory, interdistrict desegregation or consolidation is just an initial and temporary step in this structural transformation. We must then link housing, school, economic, political, and cultural opportunities and spread accountability throughout entire metropolitan areas via regional planning.”

      The regionalism call fits with the subsidiarity of Davis’ Truth and Reconciliation vision. She sees 5 to 7 in the US and pushes bottom-up processes akin to deliberative democracy practices. powell’s contrast of assimilative fits with the quotes from Education Reimagined pushing transformative instead of transmissive.

        • If memory serves, Christopher Hitchens planted trees in Cooba…must be a right of passage. I am sure that I have deep moral flaws, but I have never seen that kind of activity as being productive of much of anything…

          What I did like, however, was E. Michael Jones’s quest to get a pump working in an African community that had lived off USAID for so long, it has forgotten the importance of working pumps.

          • This is another statement from Frameworks, put out yesterday while I was probably out for a walk.

            Momentum is growing for deep and widescale change to our society and its systems. We can feel it. Getting our frames and narrative right is essential to realizing the changes that the American public increasingly demands.

            But how do we position our messages to grow this energy? Helping answer this question is what drives us at the FrameWorks Institute.

            A crisis alone is rarely enough for meaningful change. In addition to emphasizing the urgency of the problems we face, many communicators are advancing concrete ways that we can begin to address systemic racism and promote equity across all areas of life. We need to make it clear that there are problems that require our complete and undivided attention while showing that we have concrete solutions and ways of addressing them. We must talk about what we want to see and where we need to go, not just about all of the things that stand in our way. Getting this right is key to making sure that when we look back on our current moment, we will see it as one in which real change happened.

            Today was grocery store day, plus getting supplies for Fathers Day anticipating demand exceeding supply by closer to this weekend. I have always been a planner but these last several months have polished that tendency to a marked degree.

      • A concrete example of a Japanese female ‘transformed’ by her experience as an undergrad at an Ivy League liberal arts college — East Coast.

        Upon return to her home country after a ten-year hiatus of education and work, this person determined that she could not live in her own culture — TOO OPPRESSIVE. This required expatriate housing, and special club membership. Imagine, ANY OF YOU, studying and working abroad for a decade and then your return to the U.S., requiring special housing that would preclude your having contact with Americans.

        It goes further. Motherhood and any ‘act’ associated with it was also deemed OPPRESSIVE, which required the acquisition of a brown ‘helper’, to perform 90% of the duties relevant to this role. Despite, or perhaps owing to the POSH education, work opportunities were limited in a market in desperate need of bi-linguals. A job was finally secured, but that required a WARDROBE. Shopping for a WARDROBE required interface with the dreaded, OPPRESSIVE locals, which in turn, required the intervention of the OPPRESSIVE spouse, who ran interference during a shopping spree. Beyond the commute to a J.O.B. (lowly, and not commensurate with self-perceived talents), there has been almost NO interaction with the local population, no friends made, no interests pursued, going on five years.

        This, admittedly, is an extreme case, but not an unusual one.

        This person will, at the same time, describe her experience of American culture as having been characterized by hyper-racism, though not occurring within the confines of said Ivy League university.

        I can cite another case of an American woman who grew up in Japan, and who later attended an Ivy League woman’s university (East Coast), and who worked a bit, and then returned to Japan. This person manifested a strange psychosis after having, apparently, ‘hooked-up’ with a male in a club. A relationship that had evidently gone on over days, and in her own apartment, was determined to have been a case of rape…and an elaborate victimhood scenario was concocted. The suitor was nearly charged and incarcerated before a text message string vindicated him.

        Mass hypnosis? Mass psychosis?

        I was last in the U.S. nine years ago. My big question on that visit was, WHY was everyone talking and gesticulating like Jerry Seinfeld?

        I felt like I was trapped in a Reality TV show in which every character was Jerry Seinfeld, disaffected, glib, neurotic.

        Maybe it is I who am strange…I live in a world of well-dressed workers, and mommy’s, and daddy’s and kids…and corny variety shows on the TV, and clean streets, and the occasional violent crime that gets talked about for YEARS; things kind of work, most of the time.

        Oy vey!

  2. I understand they are gardening in CHAZ. This entails placing an inch of topsoil on flattened cardboard boxes, planting seeds, and waiting for dinner. Oh yes, the ‘produce’ is for Black people, only, in a new and more inclusive world.

    • It has been my humble experience that people who are possessed of facts and the truth do not trade in “frames” and “narratives”. One of the more interesting one’s they are invoking in re: CHAZ is, “The Summer of Love”. As a person who used to call S.F. home, I can tell you that sections of that ‘City’ still provide weekend hippies with a change to replicate “The Summer of Love”…and, these districts look like CHAZ does, now, and perennially so. I would say, ditto, for the Esalen Institute, though that venue represents up-scale hippiedom.

      Perhaps, frames and narratives can be useful in terms of propagating and understanding of what this sort of social entity actually is, is modeled after, and who were and are its modelers.

      For instance, if one looks at the accoutrements of a Mormon temple, a Mormon temple ceremony, it is pretty clear what is being replicated, paid homage to. Groups and societies can configure in all sorts of ways, so why would/must CHAZ look ‘like’, be ‘like’ something else? Why can’t CHAZ be ‘like’ the Temple of Athena, or the Mondragon collective in the Basque country? If people really are awake and alive to each other and current realities, why do they replicate a failed past? Oh, that’s right, we will get it right, next time.

      I would suggest that we are dealing with in the person’s of the planners and their dupes, a group of people who are INCAPABLE of being all the things they aspire to in their lofty messages to us all. I would also suggest that this group of planners who seem so focused on future possibilities — GLORIOUS — are really attempting to recover a past state, that has been idealized. This ‘state’, that never actually was, is sold like candy to the gullible, and the gullible are its primary victims.

      If seedlings sprout in 1” of topsoil laid upon cardboard boxes laid upon cement pavement, and grow and ‘flourish’, then winter wheat really will grow in the spring, and children will flourish in digital classrooms.

      It seems to me that one-room school houses had a better track record of success, so why not move forward/backward to these? We could be time travelers like Foucault and miine the past for really civilized constructs instead of playing an endless loop of the Grafeful Dead….RIGHT!?!

      • OMG. There we have it all coming together.

        Dr. Shariff Abdullah is a consultant, author, and advocate for mindfulness, inclusivity, and societal transformation. Shariff’s meta-vision and mission are simple: we can create a world that works for all beings. Shariff promotes heart-centered inclusivity, compassionate dialogue, and a society based on vision. His work is informed by his spiritual practices; growing up with racism and generational poverty; his years as a successful attorney; and his inclusivity experiences in over 120 cultures, spanning 45 countries. Shariff has written several paradigm-shifting books, including: The Power of One: Authentic Leadership in Turbulent Times; the award-winning Creating a World That Works for All; Seven Seeds for a New Society; Practicing Inclusivity; and The Chronicles of the Upheavals. Shariff serves on IHE’s Curriculum Advisory Board and his book, Creating a World That Works for All, has been a required text in IHE’s graduate programs for more than a decade.

        IHE: In your vision for the future, you imagine humanity entering a “Transcendent Age” in which “humans recognize and fully practice our connection and inclusive relationship with all other humans, all Beings, the Earth and Life everywhere in our Universe.” With humans seemingly more polarized than ever; easily manipulated by falsehoods and manufactured desires; and currently living through both a pandemic and, in the U.S., an upheaval to end racism, both of which elicit varying levels of anger, anxiety, and sorrow, how can we move toward this transcendent age?

        Shariff: Over the years, I’ve found it amazing how many people in this country seem resistant to the idea of societal transformation. Even so-called “activists” seem to confine their activism to a limited range of causes. Nearly everyone understands the need for societal transformation, and each one of us can recite a litany of ills present in today’s society. Whether ecological, economic, social, psychological, or any other area, the majority of us have a profound realization: something is wrong…

        Since I was very young, I have been driven by a vision: that from the world that exists – a world filled with poverty, racism, and exploitation – we can create a world that works for all beings. When I was 11 years old, I helped to form an organization in Camden, NJ called, “The Black People’s Unity Movement” (BPUM). (At the time, I mistakenly thought that black people were the only ones with problems.)

        I am puzzled why others do not generally have transcendent visions – or at least adopt someone else’s. Given the ferocity with which people talk about their problems and challenges, why do we shy away from visions that are profound and comprehensive?

        Like the rest of us, I am watching as America and much of the world sink into deeper levels of chaos. All of our divides are heightened; all of our problems seem ever more intractable. A positive future seems further away than ever. It has never been more clear: we must “get it,” or we will fail as a society.

        Although it may seem contradictory, I think the reason that many people don’t “get it” is precisely because they do. Intuitively, people understand how a powerful vision calls upon them to change. A true vision calls forth the highest in each of us, and we may not want to go there. Al Gore titled his book “An Inconvenient Truth.” Perhaps my next book could be called “An Inconvenient Solution.”

        We tell ourselves that we are willing to give up our creature comforts for the sake of our children and the well-being of the Earth, but actually most of us are not. We want to fix the problem in “those people over there” (whoever we perceive as taking something away from us), but we are not willing to look at the fact that each one of us carries within us the seeds of this dysfunction.

        I was on a phone call yesterday and have been going through the supplied materials and thinking about the implications given what I know is going on. Note the implications of this definition of Social Justice: “Equal access to and distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges within a society.”

        That will take all-invasive governmental power at all levels beginning with the individual human mind and personality. Precisely what we are seeing with less upfront rationales.

          • Plenty of ‘est’ lingo in Dr. Shariff’s offering. “Creating a world that works for everyone (TM)” was Erhard’s mantra. Authentic leadership, paradigm shifts, heart-centered, transformational. This is pure ‘est’.

            The geographic connections with ANTIFA are interesting. I have tended to view est/Landmark centers as little Bolshevik nodes operating under cover of self- and professional development training group. They do run candidates for political office in their respective geographies. I believe Harry Rosenberg ran for a congressional seat, if I am not mistaken, and I would expect to find them on city councils, and school boards.

          • Good to know about est. Here we have yet more reasons for all the lenses and framing hype. Released yesterday.

            In May 2020, the Aspen Institute Education & Society Program shared ten recommended state actions for Fostering Connectedness in the Pandemic Era that were developed with a diverse group of education leaders. The pandemic and resulting closure of school buildings have revealed the deep inequities that already existed in many schools, and connectedness is one of those gaps. Data from school climate surveys demonstrates that students of color, English-learners, and students from low-income families do not feel safe at school, in part because they do not have the kind of caring, trusted relationships that create belonging – and in part because they do not feel challenged with meaningful, rigorous work.

            With this in mind, and as a complement to the initial recommendations to advance social, emotional, and academic development, we turned to another diverse set of leaders for actionable insights focused on culturally and linguistically responsive education.

            These actions for states include:

            Enable community partnerships to bring valuable cultural capital into schools.
            Ensure all students have access to rigor.
            Equip the education workforce to engage students with rigor through culturally and linguistically responsive education (CLRE).
            Amend state laws and regulations to define “safety” and “school safety” in ways that encompass students’ experience of psychological/intellectual safety and belonging.
            Improve and prioritize school climate measurement and support to better attend to cultural and linguistic diversity.

            All five recommendations embrace one fundamental idea: Culturally and linguistically responsive education helps students become independent learners. Education leaders at all levels and people on both sides of the political divide agree that confidence, competence, and interpersonal skills are not just the keys to success in school – they pave the way for success in work and community life.

            This is a moment for leadership and action. State and districts have the opportunity to reimagine school when buildings reopen. Connectedness and independent learning should be at the forefront of those efforts.


            Same day this group on Culturally Responsive Education did a webinar on marrying CRE to Mastery Learning in order to support Students’ Identities and Culture.

            Useful Pandemic and rioting. Notice the reference in the latter link to providing students with the knowledge, skills, and vision to transform the world toward liberation.

            Never in the history of the world that I am aware of has any good come from implementing theories in lieu of what works and fixing what is not. Neither will this, but at least we have a front row seat for what is being planned.

          • Professor Paul Reveille of the Education Redesign Lab said this to a conference of mayors:

            “Are there things we don’t want to restore? … Can we use this as an opportunity to pivot in a new direction?”

            Adding these articles that lay out where this is all headed in classrooms.

   It is an interesting story that I must admit I was unaware of.

            After President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1963, freeing enslaved people in the Confederacy, the news didn’t reach parts of the American South until after the Civil War ended (April 9, 1865). In fact, more than 250,000 enslaved people in Texas didn’t receive the news until June 19, 1865. Yes, you read that right—a quarter of a million people continued to suffer in slavery for 2.5 years after it was outlawed.

            Now, it’s easy for our 21st-century minds to immediately think, “That makes sense because they didn’t have the internet. News probably traveled slowly back then.”


            Here’s an example for context: When President Lincoln was shot at Ford’s Theatre, the New York Times reported his possibly fatal shooting (which we know led to his death) the same night. And news of the President’s passing the next day spread quickly thereafter. In other words, important news could reach the entire country, if the people in charge of local newspapers chose to report it.

            Okay, back to the story.

            Finally, on June 19, 1865, Major General Gorden Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas, to inform the Lone Star State that slavery was outlawed in formerly Confederate states. Unfortunately, the path to liberation didn’t end there.

            As American scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. explains in his article for The Root, the ex-Confederate mayor of Galveston openly disregarded Granger’s orders and forced freed people back to work. On plantations, it was essentially up to enslavers to decide when and how to announce the news to enslaved men and women. Many enslavers waited until the harvesting process was complete.

            So what happened to the formerly enslaved men and women who weren’t forced to continue working? According to Elizabeth Hayes Turner’s essay in “Lone Star Pasts: Memory and History in Texas” and Leon F. Litwack’s research in “Been in the Story So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery,” legally free Black men and women continued to be terrorized, shot, and hanged for minor “offenses” like swimming in the river or expecting fair treatment from their employers.

            And the fight for true freedom continues today.

            Project XQ is funded by Steve Jobs’ widow. It seeks to remake the nature of high school. Arne Duncan is on their Board.

          • Your old friend MAPs–Measures of Academic Progress– aligning itself to Kahn Academy’s portfolio of ‘learning experiences’ to correct for ‘missing skills.’

            They forgot the part about the skills being necessary to be the desired ‘system’ likely to be motivated to act when desired, perceive what is desired, and interpret supplied experiences as desired. Merely the facade of free choice in the 21st century. Much easier to control people when the yoke cannot be seen.

          • This was in one of today’s emails.

            So was this , which I suppose is another synonym instead of structural or systemic. They all require wholesale transformation at the level of mind and emotions as the remedy.

            You can buy Abdullah’s book Creating a World that Works For All or the 2015 Workbook of activities to get there.

            We are familiar with the vision “How do we create a society whose members are conscious of their needs as well as the needs of every living being?” but it is useful to have him and the Institute tie it to mindfulness and helpfully capitalize it for emphasis. It is also interesting that he talks about the need to target ‘consciousness’ just like the webinar I was on earlier in the week which insisted students have the desired sociopolitical and sociohistoric consciousness. To free education “from the conceptual and historical shackles we each place upon it” is precisely why students get taught Enduring Understandings and Disciplinary Core Ideas instead of facts.

            John Goodlad told us first that changing education lay at the heart of all transformation plans for society because it is the only institution virtually everyone spends their formative years immersed in. Now Abdullah emphasizes that “we believe we need to transform the system of education because education underlies all other systems.” Since he changed his name as an adult, I can only imagine it is not news to him that the Tarbiyah Project functions like Tranzi OBE as I noted back in 2016 when I stumbled across it.

            I guess we will see what happens when site comes back up.

            Probably good for my psyche I have a livestream Gentle Yoga class this am. Benn a busy week.

          • A Russian tsar liberated his serfs with a pen stroke, and which did not result in, require the death of 800,000 human beings. Slaving is slaving and oppression is oppression; APPLE is one of the biggest slavers in the PRC.

          • You might find this interesting.

            Fits with what was in that Brookings link yesterday on Reopening America except it wants in-person instruction for the least affluent students, while the more affluent, whose parents pay most of the property taxes supporting the school district, would largely be online. That gets to Equity in their minds.

            Of course, online learning is a massive data gathering operation that allows companies to know as much about the learner as google maps knows about physical locations.

        • “Like the rest of us, I am watching as America and much of the world sink into deeper levels of chaos. All of our divides are heightened; all of our problems seem ever more intractable. A positive future seems further away than ever. It has never been more clear: we must “get it,” or we will fail as a society.”

          Getting “it”
          At the end of the two weekends, the victim participant was supposed to “get it”. Get what? Well, you just shelled out a quite significant sum in pre-late-70s-inflation 1970s dollars to fatten Werner Erhard’s bank account. Get it?

          Participants who “got it” came out of EST with a new vocabulary of incomprehensible and ultimately meaningless psychobabble that was supposed to “transform” their lives, or something.

          • I think you had better read this from June 11. A taste–

            More recent protests against racial inequality, which began in the U.S. and quickly prompted global outcries against the oppression of Black communities, further confirm that the old normal isn’t enough.

            As a result, entire sectors need to reimagine a more equitable post-COVID world order. This includes business schools, which train the very talent required to steward a more inclusive economy…

            As the world braces for the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, business schools must go beyond offering peripheral courses on ethics and sustainability and instead integrate discussions into the curriculum that cut across class lines and examine the limits of shareholder capitalism…

            By unwittingly creating parameters around thought and discussions, business schools predictably churn out graduates who lack the critical thinking and creativity required to reimagine fractured economic systems—and who are unable to reconcile with Einstein’s famous words: “No problem can be solved from the same consciousness that created it.”

            Change that consciousness. The new purpose of all ed at every level apparently.

            Adding this manifesto which was published after I last wrote about GRLI–the Global Business school initiative tied to the UN Global Compact.


            This is an inclusive and collective call for deep systemic change across three domains: how we live, how we learn, and how we lead. Being consciously connected to one’s own self, to others in meaningful relationships and to the whole is a prerequisite for making change a reality. This emergent paradigm represents a shift towards consciousness of ‘I’, ‘We’ and ‘All of Us’.

            Fits in perfectly with that Education Reimagined article from this post.

  3. Want to tell you, Robin, that a Landmark Education ‘survivor’ I interviewed…well, let me first explain that because they are secretive about their ‘program’ contents, I was always first trying to find out WHAT was going in the training, what kind of language and terminology was being used, and especially in the higher-level more esoteric programs. So when I asked this person what she could remember, what the language sounded ‘like’, this person responded, “Have you read the works of Lenin?”

  4. “Eros & Civilization” was required reading in the context of my Humanities program at a Methodist liberal arts college, formerly famous for its stellar Classics program, and conservatory.

    Here is a Davis interview in which she explains her relationship with Marcuse at Brandeis. She describes her work in Germany has having involved Marcuse’s fellow Frankfurt School members.

    • This is very good and goes to the point I often make. My bolding.

      The activists who campaign to remove the statues want radically to change the look of the British capital. The clash seems to consist of, on one side, violent censors who bully everyone, and on the other side, cowardly, appeasing politicians, who are afraid and bow to the vandals. Monuments are a vital and visible part of a global city; they embody their place in the history of a city, otherwise only bus stops and Burger Kings would remain there. These protestors appear to wish for a revised, sanitized history. If we do not quickly understand that, if we erase our past, as the former Soviet Union tried to do, it will be easier for people to create their vision of our future with no rudder to anchor us or our values. We will be left with nothing in our hands but shattered pieces of our history and culture.

      This movement of hating the West — which has, as all of us do, an imperfect history — seems to have begun in British universities. In Cambridge, professors of literature asked to replace white authors with representatives from minorities to “decolonize” the curriculum. The student union of London’s prestigious School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) asked to remove Plato, Kant, Descartes, Hegel and others from the curriculum, because they were “all white” — as if the color of our skin should be the sole determinant of our thoughts. In Manchester, students painted over a mural based on Kipling’s poem “If”.

      Adding this because the phrase 1793 Project does seem to be an unfortunately apt metaphor.

          • You may find it interesting just how much the supposed alternatives are also interested in targeting the hardware and software of the student’s brain.

            The Pathway to Changing Habits

            Our brains are filled with all kinds of neural pathways. These pathways bundle together through repeated actions to form habits. The brain, however, is constantly changing. Neuroscientists have been researching brain plasticity as far back as the late 1800s, with the most substantive results coming in the last few decades. Our understanding of neurons is that the physical matter of our brains is overhauled fairly rapidly on a cellular level. The brain you have today is not the brain you had yesterday. What this means is that our habits are not set in stone, they also can be changed by creating new neural pathways. Changes can occur for people of any age and any context. However, our brains – and therefore our habits – are most malleable when we are young. This is encouraging news for us as educators. That student who can’t sit still is not that way because it is his character, he simply has not developed the proper neural pathway that automates sitting in a ready-to-work position during class. With some work, he can learn a new habit.

            The good news is that we can change, but we need to understand that change only occurs with intentional practice and concerted effort. Think about it this way, the new program has to be written over an old program. Our bundles of neurons have formed together meaning that the old paths are well trodden. It is far easier for Johnny to move this way and that than it is for him to sit in one position on his chair. If he is to change his habit, he needs practice and lots of it. Because of his weakness in sitting properly, he also needs someone to come alongside him to help him give his best effort the whole way. That’s where you as his teacher come along. In my next post, we’ll explore a method of habit training outlined by Charlotte Mason that will assist us as educators to support students.


          • Did you see this?

            Mindfulness practices have been shown to be key to self-regulation of attention, emotion, and impulses in students and educators alike, boosting academic and cognitive performance across a range of domains, while cultivating happier, more resilient students and staff. This institute will share proven practices that can be used by educators and clinicians looking for creative ways to incorporate mindfulness in their classroom and even clinical settings. You should be prepared for a week of learning and practicing mindfulness through awareness, movement, games, play, and activities. Learning differences, cultural differences, developmental differences, not to mention different settings all impact how children learn and this institute will show you ways to adapt mindfulness to meet those differences and settings, rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach. You will create an outline for your own curriculum, adapted for your school or setting.

            or this?

            As educators, our goal is to support and empower students so they may flourish academically, socially, and emotionally. But how do we create more calm, self-regulated, and responsible learners and thinkers online or in the classroom? In this highly interactive and inspiring institute, you will learn skills needed to merge the neuroscience of learning with the realities of classroom instruction, as well as practical strategies you can implement immediately to help students regulate their social-emotional lives, maximize their thinking, cope with ADHD, ASD, and trauma, and be responsible for their own learning. You will learn about the four neurocognitive abilities related to the frontal lobes (executive function), brain stem (attention), temporal lobes (sequencing), and occipital lobes (spatial). These brain functions are critical to students’ academic and social-emotional success and understanding them will allow you, the student, and parents to make more informed decisions about what students need to thrive as learners.

            No wonder there was such an organized effort to mislead parents and taxpayers that competency-based education was some kind of vocational, workforce training than the neural reengineering needed for a new type of 21st century ‘citizen’ with specifiable Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes and other desired characteristics. Read last week that US Department of Defense simply calls those learning outcomes by the acronym KSAO.

      • I was happy to hear about the need to replace ‘white’ authors/ intellectuals because that means The Frankfurt School has to go. Yippee!!!

        • Also, does anyone know WHO created the concept of ‘whiteness’? I am wondering because I imagine that in this game, not only is the identity of the proletarian/THE OPPRESSED, ever-shifting — I mean six weeks ago, we were trying to protect “old people”…but, also, narratives and constructs related to the OPPRESSOR. “White People” has had real staying power, though, so maybe this one is a keeper.

          I am trying to remember when I adopted the identity, “white person”. I think that as a child, at least in my neighborhood, we still retained vestiges of European identity groups…and there were the Protestants and the Catholics. We had Black neighbors, and I guess relative to their melanin level, we were ‘white’, but I don’t remember thinking about it, myself, that way, as a “white person”. Somebody has done a lot of ‘work’ around this.

          • This from 1999 may help.

            Also this quote takes it back to DuBois which is consistent with what I heard at the (co)lab program here is Atlanta back in 2013 on what education could be the tool for the nation to become.

            At a time when some initiatives for the study of whiteness begin as a conversation solely and deliberately among whites only, CWS has been interracial from its inception and has centrally involved faculty and students from the university’s ethnic studies programs. The infl uence of both history and ethnic studies has put CWS in an especially strong position regarding understanding that the critical study of whiteness is not, as it is too often portrayed in the press, a recent and university-based project undertaken mainly by white scholars. CWS discussions have instead consistently refl ected the long roots of inquiries into when, how and why some people have, over the last centuries of human history, suddenly come to value what W.E.B. Du Bois long ago called “personal whiteness.” Not surprisingly, this knowledge developed most quickly and systematically among racialized, enslaved, conquered and colonized peoples for whom white power and white pretense were urgent problems. Both this long sweep of the study of whiteness and the key role of people of color in undertaking such study are represented in the bibliography published here. Participants within CWS also have made attempts to bridge lines between disciplines and between the university and community. When an experimental fi lm is screened at a CWS event, quantifi cation-oriented psychologists are as likely as fi lm scholars to be the fi rst to respond to it. U.S. history, British studies, communications research, art, Asian American studies, literature, law, education, art history, African American studies, cinema studies, anthropology, geography, sociology, urban planning, theology and landscape architecture have all fi gured prominently in the group’s programming. Within the community, CWS has drawn participation from those working in libraries, churches and schools as well as in movements challenging the massive imprisonment of young people of color in the United States. This diversity has encouraged plain-speaking, with even theoretical and statistical discussions necessarily conducted with a minimum of jargon. Much of the reach of this bibliography stems from the ways in which CWS has encouraged its participants and its guests to conceive of whiteness broadly, with its existence being a historical, aesthetic, political, educational, moral and practical problem at once.

            From here

          • is another bibliography from a center Working to Improve Schools and Education

            Also don’t forget the posts I did on the Aspen Institute’s RETOC–Racial Equity Theory of Change after a CA ed group tied to La Raza linked to it as its vision.

          • Read this gobbledygook from an Assistant Principal

            The deficit-thinking model translates into schools when students and teachers of color are labored with the work of keeping whites “woke.” In my experience, whites do not believe they can be experts on race, and that it can actually be racist to believe we can.

            Make no mistake, I am 20 years in of intentionally sustaining my gaze on my own race. I will never be on autopilot to racialize myself; that is how the system of whiteness works. Its whole goal is to keep race off my daily calendar. In fact, our oppressor language pits whites against other whites who can identify their own race.

            I have had white people tell me I’ve threatened them, shut them down, made them uncomfortable, and say I am just all together wrong for saying whiteness is a thing. I cannot promise racial literacy won’t be threatening — the narrative I hear the most when engaging whites about race. What is threatening to you and what is threatening to me is subjective.

            This is where the work often gets held up for white folks. What shuts another person down may inspire reflection for me. What makes another uncomfortable might make me excited to finally understand a specific belief I’ve held and can now examine. Due to a desire to make race comfortable for whites, it has been on a volunteer basis to address whiteness for white teachers.


            That’s now learning? What a tragedy for this country because again it means that school cannot be a way out if one’s family circumstances are not conducive to using appropriate languages of thought and factual discussions. The race and class really can become limiting circumstances except by fiat hiring or promoting or admitting.

            Here’s more

            My education focused on the social construction of whiteness in society through the classroom lens. This was my beginning teacher training, one could say. On the first day of class as a senior English teacher, I had no idea what “Macbeth” was about and had never read “Beowulf.” If I had, I had forgotten.

            However, I did have a strong understanding of how my white-female-heterosexual-able-bodied-self translated in the classroom. I understood my body as a text is read as privileged. I was not lord of knowledge and here to pour my greatness into students. I had no agenda to make students love English. I loved students. I taught students, not English.

            An important conversation was one with a cook at the restaurant I worked at on weekends. He asked, “What do you mean you don’t know Shakespeare? Isn’t that what you’re teaching?” I said, “Shhhh, don’t tell anyone, but they give us the teacher’s edition.” He laughed, I laughed.

            What a tragedy to have such an individual as an English teacher. She may not have a deficit view, but whatever deficits exist will remain. So sad again for anyone who did not grow up with good books in the home that were read regularly, talked about, and cherished.

        • This fits right in with where Fania Davis is going and all the references to ‘systemic racism’ and ‘structural racism’ that must not be contradicted by an actual facts pertient to what is being asserted.

          Our unjust racial divide in wealth is an inheritance that began with chattel slavery, when blacks were literally the capital assets for a white landowning plantation class. The injustice did not end with Emancipation; racist systems of exploitation and extraction continued on to sharecropping, “whitecapping,” Jim Crow, and the exclusion of blacks from the New Deal and postwar polices that built an asset-based white middle class. These injustices live on in dramatic wealth disparities that are awaiting repair.

          It noteworthy that, in the 2020 Democratic Party Presidential primary, there was near consensus support for HR40 –a first step towards reparations, ordinally initiated by the late Rep. John Conyers and now championed by Rep. Sheila Jackson on the house side, and Sen. Cory Booker on the senate side. As we pointed out in our previous report, that I co-authored, “Ten Solutions to Bridge the Racial Wealth Divide,” the racial wealth divide is rooted in structural policy, not individual action.1Government action, and inaction, has brought us to this point today. The solutions we point to seek to leverage public policy to address this structural inequality and shift government interventions towards bridging, rather than expanding racial economic inequality. This report is timely. The job losses associated with the COVID-19 pandemic rival that of the Great Depression.

          If we fail to act or if we act with timidity, there will be unnecessary suffering and Blacks,and other economically marginalized groups, will bear the brunt. Overcoming these challenges require bold, transformative action. The responses to the last Great Recession were too tepid and wealth disparity, including the racial wealth divide, substantially worsened. We can do better. Inequality and despair do not have to be our destiny. We can promote our shared prosperity and create a better world. This reports presents eight solutions that provide the underpinnings of a new social contract that does just that.

          It’s the Preface to this

          • Well, the confused thinking and misdiagnosis mounts. We have the COVID-19 virus — and, BTW, it sounds like a group of researchers in CA just determined that ultra-violet rays, i.e. sunlight kill the ‘virus’ — diagnosed as the ’cause ‘of a global recession, not the mismanagement of the response. And, we have “white supremacism” now conflated as being the cause of the immiseration resulting from that mismanagement.

            A citizen journalist reported in from CHAZ. The “autonomous zone” appears to be a seven-acre urban park, previously known as a location at which to get high, or score drugs. Most the the current residents of CHAZ are either seeking drugs, or are under the influence. Twelve or so organizers (w/clipboards) seem to have been tasked with eliciting protest behaviors from the residents, which can include but are not limited to breaking the windows of adjacent properties. Drug-seeking seems to have taken a precendent over protesting.

            There are some very cynical people involved in ‘all’ of this.

  5. Oy vey, when you play fast and loose with history for a couple of generations, any dot-connecting is possible. So, now the statues of Catholic saints and being torn down in CA. You see the mission system was responsible for the culture of mass incarceration in CA,…it began with the Franciscan friars; also, apparently, the whole system of policing in CA, began with the friars. This sort of lets the Clinton’s off the hook for creating a prison industrial system, doesn’t it? I guess this is another Jacobinist dimension…wishing to return to the noble savage ethos, that never was.

    One statue of Junipero Serra was torn down in S.F.’s Mission Dolores Park. This is not the first afront to the church to take place at that location. I can VIVIDLY remember the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence enacting their own perverse version of the Passion in that park. I will spare you the details…

    • New report out today on education globally. From the Intro

      2020 • GLOBAL EDUCATION MONITORING REPORTiiiForewordIt has never been more crucial to make education a universal right, and a reality for all. Our rapidly-changing world faces constant major challenges – from technological disruption to climate change, conflict, the forced movement of people, intolerance and hate – which further widen inequalities and exert an impact for decades to come. The COVID-19 pandemic has further exposed and deepened these inequalities and the fragility of our societies. More than ever, we have a collective responsibility to support the most vulnerable and disadvantaged, helping to reduce long-lasting societal breaches that threaten our shared humanity.In the face of these challenges, the messages of the 2020 GEM Report on inclusion in education are even more poignant. It warns that education opportunities continue to be unequally distributed. Barriers to quality education are still too high for too many learners. Even before Covid-19, one in five children, adolescents and youth were entirely excluded from education. Stigma, stereotypes and discrimination mean millions more are further alienated inside classrooms. The current crisis will further perpetuate these different forms of exclusion. With more than 90 per cent of the global student population affected by Covid-19 related school closures, the world is in the throes of the most unprecedented disruption in the history of education. Social and digital divides have put the most disadvantaged at risk of learning losses and dropping out. Lessons from the past – such as with Ebola – have shown that health crises can leave many behind, in particular the poorest girls, many of whom may never return to school. This Report’s core recommendation for all education actors to widen their understanding of inclusive education to include all learners, no matter their identity, background or ability comes at an opportune time as the world seeks to rebuild back more inclusive education systems. This Report identifies different forms of exclusion, how they are caused and what we can do about them. As such, it is a call to action we should heed as we seek to pave the way for more resilient and equal societies in the future. A call to collect better data, without which we cannot understand or measure the true scope of the problem. A call to make public policies far more inclusive, based on examples of effective policies currently in force, and by working together to address intersecting disadvantages, just as we saw Ministries and government departments are capable of when addressing Covid-19. Only by learning from this Report can we understand the path we must take in the future. UNESCO stands ready to help States and the education community so that, together, we can develop the education the world so desperately needs and to ensure that learning never stops. To rise to the challenges of our time, a move towards more inclusive education is non-negotiable – failure to act is not an option.

      If it’s true the reporting is that a statue of St Augustine was taken down in Florida last night and a local politician in the Georgia legislature last night wanting a statute to disallow statues commemorating any aspect of the Confederacy from public property actually mentioned the need for Truth and Reconciliation verbatim from the conclusion of Fania Davis’ book.

      • From the same source:

        It has been my impression that the attendance of certain American institutions of higher learning causes permanent brain damage. I recall attempting to work with a ‘consultant’ who had matriculated from the University of Chicago decades before and who sat in business meeting correcting my use of the word “but” in sentences. Apparently, “but” is a negative word. This useless piece of carbon never accomplished anything business-wise, but somehow managed to live a pretty lux life in an expensive city, so one hast to wonder, as usual, ‘who’ was financing this.

        Of late, the term “un-manly” keeps running through my mind; as in how “un-manly” are the people who built, cultivated these ‘cultures’. I respected ‘1’ of my professors (undergrad) and for simply showing up and doing his J.O.B.

      • OK, as for MIT…their campus paper did publish the musings of the rankly pedophilic, Richard Stallman for a ‘coon’s age’…so, let’s talk high crimes and misdemeanors in this ‘moral’ universe…a Catholic priest RESPECTFULLY provides a nuanced version of the George Floyd tragedy…vs., decades of Stallman messages that one can argue normalized the frigging Epstein debacle on that campus.

        Shall we GET A GRIP:

        • I have another acronym for us.

          SHAPE fits with STEM to provide the concepts and skills o transform the world. Social Sciences Humanities and the Arts for People and the Economy. Lots of ‘systems’ there starting with the individual mind.

          • Well, the only people with the power to implement a solution are precisely the same people misrepresenting what they are doing. Jeb Bush does seem to be ubiquitous these days. I listened to him on a webinar earlier this week and thought about how few in the audience understood the precise definitions of what he was advocating for. Now he turns up in an interview with Tom VanderArk of Getting Smart, who was at the GEFF 2030 forum in silicon valley and then on to russia. We also have this honesty that fits with other webinars I have been on in recent weeks.

            Designing a new system of teaching and learning is incredibly hard work, especially in circumstances of pandemic and national unrest. So where do we start when thinking about the new system design for teaching and learning in America? We start with people. Specifically, our young people (students). Systems are people working in motion together. But many systems are not designed in honor of the people, they operate in honor of arbitrary outcomes. Now is the time to flip that system design approach and design with humans at the center.
            The “Humans” in Human-Centered

            Now, more than ever we must be explicit about who we center in human-centered design. We can’t perpetuate a normed collective of people—as we know system norms are standard in whiteness and oppress/alienate all the other humans that do not subscribe to that white context. We must talk about each human, be explicit of the dynamic human experience in consideration to race, culture, gender, class, location, belief systems, physical ability, mental health wellbeing, etc. To center humans in design, we must consider:

            How does this design component best meet the interests and needs of a Latinx, non-binary young person living in New Mexico?
            If we create a process for restorative cultures at school, how are we learning from local Indigenous leaders and families to inform our work?
            How does reimagining this system component improve the learning experience of a deaf, Black, male teenager living in the urban core of Los Angeles?
            How are we ensuring that we are not perpetuating ableism in our facility and resource design priorities and ensuring all students, no matter physical or mental ability, can access and benefit?

            By shifting from generalized considerations and centering each human participant in the system design, we will better understand the correlation between processes and structures and be better in our consideration of impact and consequences for short and long term decision making. When measurements of success center on each student, and must tell the story of their individualized learning experience in a meaningful way, what matters is each students’ learning experience, and we learn more specifically what is working (or not) in the overall system design.


            We don’t want arbitrary outcomes. We need deliberate ones that advance the MH vision.

  6. “How does this design component best meet the interests and needs of a Latinx, non-binary young person living in New Mexico?”

    One of life’s big imponderables.

    I can absolutely assure you that global competitor’s of the U.S. are NOT engaged in intersectional navel gazing, and that would include the PRC.

    One thing that really intrigued me…a pearl dredged from a Mathew Rafael Johnson podcast entailed how Trotsky, et al. defined members of the ‘proletariate’.

    I was intrigued because I had the usual idea about “workers in chains”,…people engaged in various forms of manual and industrial labor….OH NO, NOT THE CASE.

    Apparently, if one can read Russian, and you are assiduous in the analysis of word usage,…’proletariate’ membership did not equate with economic status, e.g., Jacob Schiff (international banker) was in Trotsky’ese, a member of an OPPRESSED class, whereas, a Russian Orthodox priest who had taken a vow of poverty, was a Kulak/an OPPRESSOR.

    This NEVER was about CLASS STRUGGLE, or economic/social ‘dis’-advantage….and, the hairsplitting about social identity groups, and OPPRESSION, can go on ad infinitum, and is just a distraction from a LOOTING OPERATION, IMHO.

    It never would have occurred to me to trust anyone named Bush to remedy anything related to what we have been discussing.

    I was thinking about what each one of us can do as INDIVIDUALS.

    • Another interesting point made by scholar Johnson related to Thomas Kuhn’s “Structure of Scienfific Revolutions”; that being that of all the forces Kuhn identifies as contributing to the formation and de-formation of scientific dogma, $$$ is never mentioned.

      • Kuhn was a fellow in resident at the Palo Alto Center for Advanced Studies in Behavioral Sciences when he wrote that book on paradigm shift. Convenient, huh? So was Rawls when he developed his Theory of Justice and so many others whose theories knitted together to guide this collective decision-making template learning standards are now a part of.

        An interesting question is whether this is all part of China’s 2025 agenda for technology dominance over the West. I may have figured out how this web works and who dreamed it up, but lots of these planners have been working closely for decades. A Wharton prof, Kevin Werbach, has published a paper called “Panopticon Reborn: Social Credit as Regulation for the Age of AI” that I read late last week. When its aims are tied to learning standards tied to ISCED globally, the Gooru database’s ability to tell precisely where a student is on the Knowledge, Skills, and Dispositions framework in a similar function to Google Maps’ use of location and destination, the cybernetic citizenship aspiration of governance I covered, and that paper’s acknowledgment that we are looking at a successor economic and social vision to either capitalism or communism, we have too good of a fit to present facts and hoped for theories to guide perceptions to ignore.

        It was in the midst of all that that I saw that the Chinese had also invested in the MInerva Active Learning Forum as a ‘higher ed platform. From what I can see, like Gooru, it will work with any competency-based framework. Not a coincidence either that Minerva is another ‘child’ of CASBS. Also where the National Student Growth network is now based.

        • Well, I think we have previously discussed how the Kuhn concept was used to rationalize ‘certain’ paradigm shifts.

          On other points, I always thought my freshly-built Junior High facility was modeled after Bentham’s Panopticon.

          Again, it would good to talk solutions as opposed to your masterful forensic activities, which I applaud, but find demoralizing.

        • Going back to an earlier point, that being the cost of keeping ‘whites’, ‘woke’….

          This calculus of victimhood extends beyond that dynamic.

          If I have shared this story before, forgive me.

          A Japanese female of very privileged birth, education, and life experience enters a six month-long (mostly distance learning) coaching program in CA, and emerges from this believing that:

          1) the father who had financed her lavish childhood was a monster — which resulted in this ailing man being denied access to his grandchildren.
          2) a childhood lived in posh expat apartments (U.S., EU) and expensive international schools had be fraught with RACISM.
          3) a husband was an OPPRESSIVE BASTARD — I later learned he had been leaving work early to cook dinner for the family, and had been minding the kids on weekends so that she could study, and discover what an OPPRESSIVE BASTARD he was.
          4) PORNOGRAPHY is the answer to all human ills — yep, this is what I learned, too, when it started appearing in my office.
          5) it is good to “make your adolescent son ‘GAY” — not sure what this entailed, but I shudder to think.
          6) once you are WOKE, you are WOKE, no professional mentoring, learning curve needed, or desired.
          6) you can build your coaching practice by sleeping with lots of coaches.

          Now if this can be accomplished in six months of distance learning, imagine what a full-on-site undergraduate experience can net in terms of victim scores that need to be settled, injustices that require acts of restoration.

          It’s a racket.

          • I reviewed the behaviors described above with a counseling psychologist. He said this person was dissociating.

            In another age, I wonder what would be said about a woman who developed a pathological enmity toward male authority figures, began speaking in different accents, self-mutilated, started using gutter language, and became sexually promiscuous.

          • Gracious. I thought you would appreciate this out yesterday.

            Lee’s overall point is similar to that of Ramos and Shaw: Despite the fact that history isn’t made from any one source, textbooks can only teach students how to digest a narrow synthesis of history written from a single perspective, which may be as untenable as it is undesirable. What students really need, these teachers say, is to encourage students to work with primary sources themselves. That way they’re doing the work of historians—following an approach known as historiography—contrasting various points of view and coming to their own conclusions. “You’re not trying to teach students what they should think,” clarifies Shaw. “But you need to teach them how to think.”

            Historiography is hard, but undoubtedly easier in the internet age, which has made primary sources more accessible than ever. Shaw has students consider expansive questions with no clear-cut answer—e.g., “Is democracy the best form of government?”—and then sift through documents on websites like Teaching American History, the Library of Congress and the Toolbox Library of the National Humanities Center to make their cases. She also leans on the collections and work of Facing History and Ourselves, a social-justice and anti-prejudice nonprofit that offers curriculum and professional development opportunities.

            Despite the abundance of online resources, textbooks of both the print and digital varieties remain stubbornly influential. Nearly a decade ago, just a third of all history teachers had received a degree in the subject or were certified to teach it—the lowest level across all the humanities. “Most history teachers don’t do history, and don’t know how to do history,” Jim Loewen, the historian and author of “Lies My Teacher Told Me,” once told the Atlantic. In other words, if you’ve only learned history from a textbook, it’s far easier to teach from one.

            To truly do history, though, students cannot stop at primary sources, says Shaw. Nor can they stop at analysis or even critical thinking. After all, history, much like history education, is political, she reiterates. It cannot, and should not, be separated from active, engaged citizenship—whether that means students protesting, becoming activists for issues they care about or trying to change history themselves.

            Shaw often thinks about what she calls the four essential questions teachers should constantly ask themselves: What kind of citizens are we trying to develop? What kind of society do we want? What does an ideal school look like in our minds? And what is the purpose of schooling? “If we are looking at those questions and reflecting on them, then it should come up in how we teach our classes, the resources that we use and the standards that we build.”

            It would be easier if they were up front about the antipathy to a transmissive curriculum and that textbooks do just that.

  7. Keep an eye on purveyors of online learning. Check out this new BrainPOP video release on Black Lives Matter. There’s also one on Pride Month, and BrainPOP has decided to list Che Guevara under their notable June birthdays. One stop shopping for teachers who want to push the narrative. Do the teachers think they’re untouchable and they’ll never be targeted by the revolution? They should study history. Out with The Four Olds!

    Lots of cadre training online. What an efficient delivery system. Isn’t it wonderful that BrainPOP is “partnering with parents to mitigate summer learning loss?”

    My daughter’s public school utilized BrainPop on a limited basis. Her current parochial school also used it for a few topics. I think the last one she used was on photosynthesis. I hadn’t looked into BrainPOP in a long time but wow, what an eye-opener to see the politicized content. Goal: get kids to be activists, conform, and join the movement. Never mind that trained Marxists are leading BLM’s organization!

    Of course BrainPOP is well integrated with Google Classroom tools. Paid, naturally or else you’re limited to the free stuff, like BLM videos. How easy for Google to monitor student development and attitude adjustment using their review tests!

    I’m really not comfortable with Google Classroom, but that’s what the school chose for distance learning this past spring. Hoping students go back in person in the fall!
    Teachers in our public school district don’t want to go back in the fall. More online learning must be part of the plan.

    I keep thinking that the homeschooling movement is having a moment right now, with plenty of parents rethinking how their kids will be educated. Silver lining?

    • Not if the homeschooling parents are themselves simply utilizing online programs that are still targeting KSAVE for transformation at a neural level. It’s why understanding the template itself is so crucial and why I write.

      I had not seen this framework before but it makes what we are seeing so much clearer. The Casey Foundation financed the Fania Davis book I wrote about and that Framework was mentioned in this article.

      I have not written about it yet as I have a number of things I am working on that seem to be linked while pretending to be separate, but I have watched the presentation on Google’s new Gooru platform and recognize the implications of creating a Google Maps ability to locate each student’s KSAVE in terms of where they are vs a Learner Profile or Portrait of a Graduate as the destination. If you take that and how learning standards work and then lay it over what Shoshana Zuboff (who has a tag from her two previous books) calls ‘surveillance capitalism’ a shocking amount of the human experience can know be trageted for manipulation without most people recognizing what precisely has shifted.

      It is actually both terrifying and fascinating. I am very thankful I have been able to piece it all together and recognize the intended destination before we are nearly there. It is too close for any of our individual or likely collective good though when looked at factually and not with the proffered ‘lenses’.

      • Robin, I have begged you before to create a glossary of terms, by which we might compare, say, “governmentality”, and “instrumentarian power”.

    • Also this

      The cut-off word is protests.

      Prior to the events of this summer, the San Lorenzo district already held monthly conversations about race and education with central office leaders. There have also been periodic “Beyond Diversity” workshops with Pacific Educational Group Founder Glenn Singleton open to all staff, including office workers and custodians.

      “Adults create the culture, and everybody has a role,” said Camp, who is also the president of the California Association of African-American Superintendents and Administrators. “It’s broader than the classroom.”

      In New York’s Pleasantville Union Free School District, leaders have been taking a similar approach.

      Administrators in the predominantly white district read the books “How to Be an Anti-Racist” and “White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism” throughout the school year. But in light of the recent wave of protests — including a Pleasantville student-led rally in the middle of town on June 13 — the district is now making them required reading for teachers and staff, as well.

      “Those two books were really important professional reads,” said Pleasantville Superintendent Mary Fox-Alter. “You know, we as educators constantly say we’re lifelong learners, and this was an area that we challenged ourselves to grow and to understand.”

      I am adding this link especially for parents with school age kids so they can get these briefs on anticipated plans as they are published.


      As the pandemic continues, the task of supporting students becomes ever more difficult. Education leaders face an unprecedented challenge as students return to school this fall. Based on a developing list of questions from policymakers and practitioners, the EdResearch for Recovery Project taps top researchers from across the country to develop evidence briefs to inform recovery strategies.

      The Annenberg Institute at Brown University and Results for America will release new evidence briefs as soon as they are completed.

      • Thank you for all of this; I will digest. Thought for you, Robin. I became aware of, started seeing things going on in my work environment (transformational learning ‘consultancy’) around 2004-5, things I could not understand. These would include what looked like human experiments being performed on staff — and — clients; sexual abuse/sexual acting out. I tried to interpret/evaluate what I was seeing through a Labor Law ‘lens’/a professional code of conduct lens — but, there were other dimensions. I was stymied as to ‘whom’ to report this. Activities escalated in the next firm, a Human Resource Management consultancy. I kept a daily journal of what I was seeing and experiencing (labor law lens/professional code of conduct lens), and shared this with the Dean of a local international law program. He, in turn, shared it with faculty — mostly senior partners of international law firms. This cohort was stymied as to what to call this conduct. A holy host of labor laws had been breached, but the psychological abuse/manipulation of staff AND clients, well, for this there was no legal rubric. They acknowledged that these activities were outside of the realm of normal legal definition, were occupying a space closer to “crimes against humanity”; a term they used. I have been running around since 2005 like the character in Munch’s “The Scream” trying to warn people about something I could not name, something that had no name.

        • was released two days ago with this verbiage

          Systems thinking can be a powerful element of systems change, no matter whether we decided to pursue transition or it was thrust upon us. Systems thinking can help us grapple with the complex and interconnected world around us and make visible our own perceptions of how it works. Ultimately, it can help us deepen our understanding of what stands between us and our aspirational visions and articulate what it might take to bring those visions to reality.

          This guidebook introduces education stakeholders and changemakers to the theories, language, mindsets and tools of systems thinking for the purpose of informing approaches to systems change.

          The content is organized into four lessons that introduce core concepts of systems thinking and include practice questions and exercises.

          Lesson 1: Framing the Focus of a Systems Problem
          Setting the scope of a systems exploration and identifying systems behavior that stakeholders wish to change
          Lesson 2: Visualizing the Structure of a Systems Problem
          Drawing the components and interactions related to a problem that stakeholders agree is important
          Lesson 3: Looking for Leverage to Create Change
          Identifying possible actions and their potential depth of impact on the systems problem being explored
          Lesson 4: Anticipating Futures of a Systems Problem
          Evaluating the effects of various interventions or events on a systems problem and the larger system in which it sits
          Systems thinking tools and processes help groups identify novel, non-obvious solutions and reframe problems. They serve as gateways to new ways of thinking and collaborating and can help groups begin the journey toward transformation. Begin your transformation with our guidebook.

          Fits with what the Pandemic and systemic racism become sales pitches to force. I listened to the head of the New America Foundation (the one funded with search engine giant money) lay out her vision this morning in a webinar with RSA in the UK. She refers to the MH vision as the obligation for nations globally to shift to an Infrastructure of Care and made the point repeatedly about what democracy and justice obligate each of us to do for others and that government should be the container to force the vision of change. The vision may be global, but the point of implementation needs to be local.

          I kept thinking of the post I wrote back in 2015 on polyphonic progressive federalism. She also hyped the need for the democratic change to be brought about through participatory processes. Thought immediately of that new OECD paper referenced in this post, especially since Shoshana Zuboff is going in a similar direction in her book. It will be a poignant 4th knowing such plans are in the works and so much of the implementation strategies behind all those plans using a new vision of education.

          Hope everyone is having a bit of a break this week. The planners are not stopping what is intended for all of us ‘systems’ and the ‘systems’ we function or live in. Also had the vision expressed that politicians, when elected, should not think of taking power so much as using political office to ‘create power’.

          • Well, I was quite moved THIS WEEK to see a sobbing Black father of a dead son, shot in CHAZ, and prevented from receiving timely medical aid by CHAZ — ask ‘why’ no policeman, city official had even bothered to inform him of his son’s death. He evidently had heard about it from neighborhood kids.

            This is the new normal, and I hope they take it to the MAX.

          • Tim Gordon pointed out in his interview with Michael Knowles, that these ‘actors’ aren’t even good Jacobins…or good at being Jacobins.

            Might be time to stop ACCEPTING all of this…

            Am thinking of Solzenytzyn’s comment to the effect that things might have gone quite differently in the Soviet state had even a few shovels been kept by a few doors.

            I would like to see a less fatalistic tone in this discussion and SOLUTIONS.

            Otherwise, I won’t be coming here, anymore.

          • If I was ACCEPTING of any of this, I wouldn’t have spent the last ten years compiling this research to piece together what is going on. Have you come across BJ Fogg’s work at Stanford before?

            It is footnoted in Zuboff’s chapter called “Make Them Dance” but what she sees as an opportunity to take down capitalism and render it subject to democratic controls, I can see as the logic now being evaded using education, learning standards, cognitive science, and euphemisms like HOTS and competency-based ed. She lays out Sam Ervin’s statements that would become the Common Rule on human subject research. No wonder they carved out an exception for education that someone brought to my attention when I was out in California testifying in 2015. I actually went to college with one of Ervin’s grandchildren and his words resonate as what learning standards quietly undermine. I had not realized that Ervin held Senate hearings kicked off by both MKUltra revelations as well as Skinner’s 1971 book Beyond Freedom & Dignity that I covered in CtD.

            Solutions come from piecing together enough of the jigsaw puzzle that was created just to ensure this kind of epiphany should be impossible by a non-insider. It’s not impossible, but it is time consuming. Luckily, for us, the kind of revelations Zuboff had access to as a Harvard prof we can utilize from my knowledge of how learning standards and related higher ed aspects like what Minerva calls “HCs”–the Habits of Mind created by students applying stipulated concepts, principles, and categories of thought to real-world problems and harvested by a digital platform because everything is online overlaps nicely.

            In her outrage, Zuboff cited a 2015 paper called “In Search of a Human Self-Regulation System” that she views as being usurped by what she calls “surveillance capitalism”. Yes, but these same entities are financing and pushing learning standards that hijack that very same ‘Human Self-Regulation System’ to get at the student’s will to will as Zuboff called it as a cry for government regulation as a means of getting to what she calls the Third Modernity. It’s what Uncle Karl called the MH Human Development Society and Anne-Marie Slaughter yesterday referenced using the euphonious term Infrastructure of Care.

            Progress is not always easy to read or understand, but it is crucial for a way out, which I remain determined to piece together. Zuboff’s research into FB and the search engine giant practices have provided yest more helpful illumination I can write up after the holiday weekend when my children disperse. Middle child was just cutting up some outstanding watermelon I got from a veggie stand yesterday along with some of the last pole beans that will probably be available until August. My life is not always about this research or what one of my kids’ calls “Mama’s Illuminati Project”.

  8. Question: Robin, in your edu research have you encountered references to a “big tent”, or “big tent theory”? Is what it sounds like, an ideological capacous space for everything, and nothing.

    • No, but let me mull over whether I have encountered a euphemism that functions as a ‘big tent’? Finished Surveillance Capitalism this weekend. Still mulling what is admiited vs what happens through learning standards that goes to the angst that Zuboff thinks merits a different kind of capitalism. At least she thinks, like me, that Skinner’s aims are in play if not his theories. Intresting she also found Sandy Pentland’s Social Physics book to be alarming. Of course she made no reference to his UN Digital Pulse work.

      Once again I get to mull over what gets left in, left out, where it all leads, and what is a curious omission and where that would have sent us. I feel like Miss Marple except I’m neither a spinster nor do I reside in a charming English village.

      • This goes to what Zuboff wants and gears up starting tomorrow July 7.

        Notice that one of the participants is the Future Earth Alliance–which, of course, partners with MIT on this. It was the FEA and the alarming document setting it up –the Belmont Challenge– that precipitated my creating this blog. I wrote about both on June 14 and 17th, 2012.

        So it needs digital governance, which will effectively function like cybernetic citizenship.

        Adding this after reading some of those quotes issued in February 2020.

        Humanity is at a critical stage in the transition to a more sustainable planet and society. Our actions in the next decade will determine our collective path forward. Our Future on Earth 2020 aims to tell the story of where we are on our collective journey by connecting the dots between what society is currently experiencing – from fires to food shortages to a rise in populism – with recent developments in the research community.

        • I heard Michael Voris of Church Militant use this term in reference to Francis’s unique form of ecumenicism…as in, “he is creating a Big Tent”. This same term has been floating around in coaching circles since about 2014, maybe, earlier. It connotes acceptance of many paths, techniques as being equally valid. In my experience, it is a bit like the ‘diversity’ scam, meaning that only lip service is paid to the concept, and a kind of monoculture is driven from the TOP.

          • It reminds me a bit of the rhetoric surrounding the UN’s interest in the Bahai faith as well as some of what is contained in the Integral philosophy books and Ken Wilber.

            It would also fit with the Vatican’s Humanity 2.0 plans.

          • I think there is an element of Campbell’s “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” in this. In terms of the Catholic faith, the message has been that other paths are equally valid. In terms of human development strategies, they have gone there, too. When you are not tethered to a need to evidence efficacy, and when goals are nebulous, “to enhance the well-being of each employee”, one approach may well be as worthy as another.

            Recall our past discussions about the conceptual hodgepodge that is ‘est’….owing to this, it is impossible to do real research and comparative studies. I think you have noted similar issues with K-12, but, of course, accountability is not a standard in play. Probably, there are some useful ‘technologies’ operating in all of this, e.g. Appreciative Inquiry, but the lack of focus on rigorous inquiry, and real results makes all of this stuff mute. But, again, that is the POINT.

            I want you to know that I DEEPLY appreciate your intrepid efforts to understand and map all of this. I just feel it is incumbent on us to stop it in its tracks.

          • Take a look at this from March and the crucial role of changing the cognitive.

            Then notice the repeated references to Donella Meadows and her deep systemic reference points and we see precisely what was in the Knowledge Works “Beneath the Surface” systems thinking paper released last week to inculcate in students. Stopping it means understanding it well enough to get, for example, when Zuboff is giving precious info on what is really happening vs a false narrative to create demand for a remedy that doesn’t work as hyped.

            I was so SHOCKED when her book and the term popped up in Future Earth Alliance work.

            It was as if I had a bingo card that now qualified for the main prize.

          • Big Tent reminds me of language dating back to the early 90’s. Was it HW or Clinton that used it? Maybe even Reagan. Pretty sure that’s where I first heard the term.

          • I am committed to something else tomorrow at this time, but others may want to listen to this release and what it says.

            Reopening K-12 Schools During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Prioritizing Health, Equity, and Communities – Report Release
            About this Event

            Please join the Board on Science Education on Wednesday, July 15, at 11:00 a.m. for the public release of Reopening K-12 schools During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Prioritizing Health, Equity, and Communities, a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

            Reopening K-12 Schools During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Prioritizing Health, Equity, and Communities provides states and districts with guidance about whether and how to safely reopen schools in the 2020-2021 school year. The report will also recommend practices to maintain and monitor the health of staff and students, educational equity, affordability of COVID-19 mitigation in schools, and other key issues.

            The following speakers will present the report:

            Enriqueta Bond, Committee Chair, President Emeritus of the Burroughs Wellcome Fund

            Caitlin Rivers, Center of Health Security, Johns Hopkins University

            Keisha Scarlett, Chief of Equity, Partnerships, and Engagement, Seattle Public Schools

            Kenne Dibner, Study Director, Board on Science Education, The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

            Heidi Schweingruber, Board Director, Board on Science Education, The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

  9. Well, Robin, the “Big Tent” enabled in my field the introduction of every sort of pseudo-voodoo-woo everything. It also facilitated the cloaking of all of this with ‘jargon’. I understand the challenge in even understanding how terms of art are being used. I think this process, the deracination of language, and history has been incremental. I WOKE UP to realize that I had been having a professional dialogue with various stakeholders FOR YEARS, in which the same terms could have almost opposite meanings for the parties involved.

    I even went so far as to have an ex-33’rd degree mason, and now Orthodox priest look at the nomenclature because it deviates from standard psych language, but in a particular way.

    I just re-read Steve Pressman’s book on Erhard/est, and ‘chuckled’ at a reference to members of a law firm contracted by ext ’employees’ with regard to a Labor Law issue, telling these women that they would have to learn to speak English again if they were going to communicate with their legal advisors. The plaintiffs thought they were making ‘sense’, in what they were describing, but the language was so distorted, they almost required an interpreter.

    I see a lot of est-speak in the documents, and excerpts you have posted. I guess anti-cult models would describe this content as: mystical, sacred, or loaded-language. A trick of the trade, it would seem.

    I guess one concern I have had, lies in the dignifying this stuff with any kind of academic analysis, and, especially when it emanates from HARVARD.

    • I have been thinking a bit more about “Big Tents” and what Arb. Vigano is now referring to a “container”, or “an event”, and this would be Vatican II. I think his framing or reframing of the phenomenon is valuable because “containers” can be discarded, and “events” are of finite duration.

      I was thinking, too, that this magisterium, when functional, would no be so different than a five-senses reality process that would normally inform the social sciences, any science, had these not been interrupted by the formation of “containers” such as The Esalen Institute, SRI, Harvard edu, etc. These “containers”, “big tents” were not the outcome of paradigm shifts, but were cynically engineered as interruptions, disruptions of natural processes, IMHO. Just saying that reframing cuts both ways, or can.

    • I am around, but knee deep in some family stuff, as well as a lot of confessional webinars available by video since none can be in-person now. Very illuminating.

      In the mean time

      These senseless killings, and the widespread protests that followed, have awoken Americans to realize the structural racism that has plagued our nation for hundreds of years,” said Dzau. “It is an important period of reflection for our nation, as we confront the gross inequities that persist in our criminal justice system, in health care, and in our broader social systems and institutions.”

      Since we know that much of what a person becomes is epigenetic, how, apart from artificial government fiats, can we actually get Equity? Doesn’t Equity and charges of structural racism, much like CAGW, simply become a rationale for those desired governmental edicts?

  10. Robin, are you familiar with the work of Constance Cumbey? She is an attorney who investigated the New Age Movement in the 80’s, after she had discovered NAM literature in her Methodist bookstore.

    I found her take on NAM quite interesting in so far as she said it resembled a Political Action Committee as much as a spiritual movement. She saw these similarities based on her experience as a legislative analyst.

    She lays out NAM coded language, too: holistic, transformational, systems-based.

    I am reading her book on the manufacture of a New Age Messiah. Many observers in the coaching field observe that it has messianic overtones.

    • It fits with this and the Arationality sought globally via competency-based ed, which is, of course, what Equity or culturally responsive education also call for (see my webinar comment above)

      And this makes sense, because at the heart of Said’s polemic was a clear goal of invalidating fact- and evidence-based scholarship in favor of narrative arguments. If all Western—and specifically American—scholarship of the non-Western world is inherently and inescapably racist, then it didn’t matter how well a person mastered the subject. Nothing he could possibly do would be credible.

      At its base, Orientalism was a call to arms against reason.

      For students both then and now, the kind of thinking—or non-thinking—that Orientalism prescribes is extremely alluring. Said’s essential message is that a great scholar of Islam—or of Asia, Africa or Latin America—is worse than worthless. If he is a white American, he is an agent of evil. In recent years, the academic areas where Said’s anti-intellectual prescription have determined white Americans are by their nature unfit to work have massively expanded. Among others, they now include African-American studies, gender studies and transgender studies. On the other hand, a student at any level who embraces Said’s postcolonial posture is automatically accorded the status of the moral and intellectual superior to an expert who devotes his life to studying his subject.

      The ignorance of the postcolonial academic is rewarded, while the knowledge of the veteran scholar is vilified.

      What is all the emphasis on Framing and lenses, but glorifying the narrative over facts.

      That is from here.

      • On a personal note, I have been attempting to perform scholarship in my environment for decades and to support ANY vestige of it, performed by ANYONE. What I have seen in lieu of such efforts is an endless stream of ideology, which informs people HOW they are supposed to feel about this or that.

        Wasn’t Obama an acolyte of Said?

        • It occurred to me while waiting for service in a Japanese bank full of staff wearing costumes from the Andromeda Strain, that the whole Orientalism thing…the idea that Western scholarship was/is inherently ‘racist’, is kinda perverse, because most of the time, the people I encounter in my field don’t allow that ‘culture’ is real — that cultural differences exist. It is ‘one-size fits all’.

          So, you really cannot have both ways, right?

          I would be the FIRST agree that there has been a boat-load of bad social science accomplished but would point first, at the ideologically-driven disciples of Franz Boas, and this would include Mead, Benedict, and so many others. I had, for instance, a wonderfully sophisticated Japanese investment fund manager tell me that anything/everything Japanese scholars report about Japanese management science is really just a regurgitation of what Japanese were TOLD by American social and management science scholars about themselves. I would agree.

          You will recall my talking about how Harvard Business School faculty refrain from actually encountering cultures outside Boston. Perhaps, they are being culturally sensitive, and are refraining from imposing their cultural bias? Happy to make a buck when ‘consulting’ opportunties arise, though.


  11. “Eventually, Freeman obtained a sworn confession from one of Mead’s informants and proved that, as I for one had always suspected, it was all too good to be true. Margaret Mead had been told what she wanted to hear by her less than trustworthy Samoan informants, who were embarrassed by her leading questions about topics never normally mentioned by young girls—least of all to important American ladies. He devastatingly demonstrated that Margaret Mead had not written an ethnographic account, but had published a work of social science fiction, albeit one that became enormously influential in modern American culture.”

    • Mead was involved with setting up the international cybernetic society in 1969 over and above the mischief with the Macy Conferences more than a decade before. It matters now because the hybrid/virtual learning template. properly understood, plays right into the experiential element needed to tie the inner realm of the mind and emotions to the outer world.

      Hope you are well during these unforgettable times.

      • Doing okay, Robin. Thanks for asking.

        This is rich:

        1968: First annual symposium of the American Society for Cybernetics. Symposium Proceedings entitled “Purposive Systems.”

        Mead, from symposium proceedings: “I have just lived through a conference where I found myself wishing nostalgically for the dear old days of the late 1930s, when the only people one had to worry about were communists who had clearly defined goals which were different from your own….. But in this recent conference there were groups of young people whose only goals was to disrupt, who called meetings and then discussed in public such questions as whether they should stay in the conference and subvert it or walk out and get more publicity. When one asked what their aim was, they had no answer, only a loose rationale of the desirability of disrupting all the establishments, even the ones they had themselves created….”

        Oh, for the good old days when one could have civil conversations with communists…

        Talk about a historical feedback loop. Or perhaps more accurately, groundhog day.

    • Excuse me…read this article and perused the pictures, and must say, “What a beast!”

      E. Michael Jones treats Mead’s fraud in, “Degenerate Moderns”…she could not speak the language of the subjects she was interviewing; she spent a ridiculously limited amount of time observing their behavior — and she approached the project with a foregone conclusion. Also, seems to have been conducting an affair(s) with her thesis advisor and/or other parties (male and female) related to the project.

      If memory serves, Samoan males aggressively protect the virginity of their female family members, siblings, and cousins. Deflowerers are HARSHLY punished, so that kind pokes a hole in the balloon of years of unfettered lovemaking among young Samoan females.

      Oh well!

      • Speaking of culture change

        The murder of George Floyd has yet again exposed how black people continue to be seen as less than fully human in the dominant culture and institutions of this country—400 years and counting. The heroic protests in the midst of a life-threatening pandemic call us all to redouble our fight for racial justice not only in our words but in our actions to change the very foundations of our society. We have no choice in this unsettling, uncertain time when we can imagine possible futures of hopeful progress, little change, or greater oppression.

        The Partnership for the Future of Learning remains devoted to deepening and intensifying our shared commitment to racial justice. The Partnership committed early on to the realization that public education could not be renovated with schools that were just, centered in their communities, delivered meaningful learning, and enabled students to lead in democracy unless we collectively faced up to past and current harms of racism in its most pernicious, painful forms in this institution and broader American society.

        This network strives to live its values, knowing that working to directly tackle racial injustice is central to the stories and resources we co-create and share. The Shared Story community has grown as a place of support and energy to elevate racially just schooling. Partners in California and across the country are centering voices of grassroots communities of color in demanding what is needed as schools move through the pandemic. When we are together, it has been important to name and give voice to racial injustice, even though our experiences may differ, to arrive at shared understanding. And with humility, we have tried to learn from our progress and our mistakes.

        We can both honor what we have done, and accept that we have much farther to go to practice what we preach every single day. We can commit to strengthening how we work as a network, and what we do in our work to advance racial justice.

        From Really comes together when we look at these partners. Poor George Floyd is simply the needed visual for something already planned. Sort of like Mead’s ‘work’. It’s just the excuse for the desired transformation.

        • Well, if we shift the focus back to ALL LIVES MATTER, and remove ourselves from this little passion play in the U.S. — I am trying to keep chapatis on the table of my BROWN-SKINNED Indian web designer who may starve out with his family. The ill-conceived COVID-19 lockdown disrupted MILLIONS of BROWN-SKINNED people living on the Indian subcontinent from their gainful employment.

          Additionally, and if you believe this thing is real, the forced migration of Indian day and contract workers from cities like Mumbai, only served to spread the ‘virus’ — but, and, obviously, nobody thought about that.

          And, I will go back to the ALL LIVES MATTER theme in telling a story. I live on a crowded, resource-poor island in which residents, YELLOW, make due wth very little by American standards — little space, little natural abundance.

          Years ago, but well into my ‘journey’ in Asia, I flew home to California for a family visit. I landed in SFO, and rented a car — I could still remember how to drive one. Bleary, jet-lagged me took a wrong turn and wound up in an Oakland , CA — I guess you would call it — suburban community.

          I looked at the INDIVIDUAL FAMILY homes, and yards — really run-down, and dirty, and thought that property, that yard, would be an absolute KINGDOM for a Japanese person.

          ALL LIVES MATTER is a much bigger concept than BLACK LIVES MATTER, and one that would put an end to this farce, tomorrow, and for Black Lives, as well.

          Deborah, thanks for posting those really unctuous comments by Margaret Mead, a real and passionate WHITE SUPREMACIST– and colonizer of minds.

          • Wait until I tell the Ukrainian descendent I am married to whose grandparents came through Ellis Island in the 20th century or my ancestors who were farmers and shopkeepers toiling away themselves with only family members to help.

            No wonder ‘history’ and the pandemic gets turned into messaging to students about the common good. was listed as a Tool in that CASEL Roadmap for Reopening School. Notice the UNDP report I linked to yesterday states that virtual learning globally has always been the goal. The Pandemic simply sped it all up.

          • My Dutch ancestors and their toddlers WALKED across the Isthmus of Panama on their way to California.

            I grandmother of mine was, from an early age, rented out by her orphanage as a house cleaner.

            On this BLM matter, I have a question. Is there a lawyer in the house?

            OK, we know there have been SIGNIFICANT corporate donations to this ’cause’. We also know, and by a simple perusal of the BLM website that donations to BLM are, in turn, requisitioned to various other causes, and, primarily the funding of political campaigns, Biden, Sanders, Warren, etc.

            Does this violate any campaign funding laws?

            Why the subterfuge?

  12. Hi Robin,
    Can you believe the speed at which the transformation is happening? All the good little soldiers still protesting. Leaders keep making those decisions based off of emotion like they are supposed to. School names here are actively being changed. Protests still rage on. Our Comrade governor wants “Trump Troops” out but does nothing to stop it. Police cannot take action here. Seen this today
    Because throwing money at it has always helped the situation. Right, those Living Cities are booming and so are those sharing economies. I feel like it’s ground zero here. A lady was on the news saying “Breaking windows and smashing things may make some people feel a sense of discomfort, but if it gets our point across”. Discomfort? Yes, I guess some are still sensitive enough to feel discomfort over criminal activity. How long before this entire situation switches to universal basic income?

    • Was getting reports from Madrid, in the early days of COVID-whatever it is, and from an alliance partner who is an economist, and, who was, coincidentally, a Covid-19 ‘victim’. He tested ‘positive’ upon getting off a plane and was quarantined. Mild cold/flu symptoms, THAT’S ALL. What he was more concerned about was a complete SUCKING out of the Spanish economy — the destruction of wealth.

      The ‘virus’ is just cover for yet another looting operation.

      Probably, it would be good to look at communist redistribution of wealth schemes because they have a limited imagination and a predictable bag of tricks.

      Was listening with rapt attention to a podcast on “free love” early Soviet marriage protocols. The quest for “free” and meaningful love untrammeled by moral/spiritual/ethical obligation, led, in fact, to a phenomenon called “alimony marriage”. The ‘STATE’ had determined that any level of cohabitation/sexual congress could be deemed a ‘marriage’ if the woman thought it so, which triggered alimony payments. Thus, canny Bolshevik females figured out how to serially ‘marry’ a number of male dupes, and build nice lifestyles for themselves. Sound familiar?

      Heard that ‘gay restorative justice’ is on the table…LOOK OUT.

    • Look what has popped out today.

      Welcome to Changing the Narrative on Public Education, a communications toolkit designed to help advocates talk more effectively about the current needs and future possibilities of public education. In collaboration with the Partnership for the Future of Learning and the Shared Story Project, FrameWorks offers evidence-based strategies for communicating an affirmative vision for the future of education that centers race, equity, and meaningful learning.

      The Quickstart guide below offers a brief overview of framing recommendations that will assist advocates in disrupting the current narratives around public education and its future. Or if you’re new to framing, check out the Core Story of Education research for a deeper dive on what it takes to change the longstanding dominant narrative about public education.

      Yes, closing schools physically as metro ATL systems have now done makes it hard for employees to go back to the office and thus support for UBI.

      I feel a bit like you as more and more comes out to mainstream what used to be regarded as cutting edge. Wait until I use the materials from one of my June webinars to explain what ‘meaningful learning’ actually means. Hopefully I can get my concentration back as we had a zoom meeting today with my dad’s facility. We seem to have entered the stage where the metabolism shifts resulting in weight loss despite eating. What a terrible disease. If an excess of analytical thinking can act like a vaccine though, I do have a leg up there.

      I am adding this because it explains so much especially since now I know that the webinar creators is one of the listed partners. I feel a bit like an old episode of the A-Team when it all comes together. It is worth taking the time to look at all those partners.

        • Look at when this was uploaded–just when lockdowns began with the cry “to promote wellbeing and personal safety” whatever the facts as in your state. Government becomes whatever instrumentality is needed to control or affect daily living and personal behaviors.

          I am now going through all the “tools” in that CASEL document. Just wow. Did you know the Buck Institute had a PBL for Remote Learning all ready to go or that our old friend FHAO has the needed template as well? Or that the local mayor who used to chair the state republican party has written an op-ed swallowing the 1619 Project’s premises verbatim and urging HOAs to “have the needed conversations” while properly socially distancing. Miseducated and a moron seems to be who runs for elected offices these days.

        • Also in the CASEL Roadmap to Reopening link with this verbiage as the intro:

          Social-emotional learning (SEL) has tremendous potential to create the conditions for youth agency and civic engagement and, ultimately, social change. We owe our students an education relevant to their lives and that explicitly addresses the sociopolitical context. This will not only prepare our students to engage civically and peacefully across difference, but also to become the changemakers and leaders we need.

          Below are some ways to cultivate students’ SEL skills while developing their sense of agency for social change:

          Aristotle said, “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” Self-awareness–the ability to recognize one’s emotions, thoughts, and values–is a crucial skill for understanding others and the world.
          Teach a unit on the relationship between identity and equity, including activities that push students to reflect on how their identity hinders or enhances their life opportunities.
          Have students interrogate their power and privilege, as well as racism, homophobia, sexism, and other forms of violence, to consider what changes they can make within themselves and their world to achieve more equity.
          You might try the New York Times’ collection of videos, “25 Mini-Films for Exploring Race, Bias, and Identity with Students.”

  13. The amount of information coming out is overwhelming. I agree that the speed of change is accelerating and we are witnessing what Brett Weinstein has called it a “horizontal revolution.”

    Cornell’s newest initiatives will hardly improve race relations by the looks of the announcement released yesterday. Is this the shape of things to come and more?

    I’d like to recommend the Twitter account of James Lindsay @ConceptualJames because he and his videos on New Discourses are working overtime to debunk Woke Inc, Critical Race Theory, Intersectionality myths, etc. He is a Math PhD and author who boils down the nonsense so it’s accessible to the average person who has remained blissfully unaware of academia’s descent into deconstruction of society. He also has some good videos at New Discourses on YouTube.

    This is a Twitter thread by Christopher Rufo worth reading about critical race theory training in the federal government:

    The Left is always so concerned about Power Dynamics but they have no shame in bullying the world to think like they do.

    The Smithsonian got called out for its racist Whiteness guide and had to remove it from the Museum of African American History.

    Here John McWhorter, a professor at Columbia, speaks out against the book White Fragility. He is not afraid of the mob.

    I think the diversity training/anti-racist crowd is going to increase demand for the SEL crowd. What they’re really doing is breaking down the individual (deconstructing) in order to rebuild, all the while making money in the capitalist system. What a racket.

    • Thanks for all the links and it feels like I am running a marathon these days at a sprint pace. Just finished this which has Gates funding and will certainly be able to make use of HOTS mandates in national K-12 education for what conceptual lenses must become habits of mind. Read this earlier today which is clearly the old Ascending from the Abstract to the Concrete technique.

      We do live in interesting times! Lots of confession going on if we know where to look. The latter paper makes it clear why we have found so much communitarian language now in K-12 curricula and stated goals for students.

    • Speaking of horizontal revolution–

      The basic structures of our society became obsolete some time ago. The current pandemic only goes to reaffirm that the world that was designed by industrial society is not useful to us for tackling the challenges of the present. For this reason, it is necessary to rethink schools, political parties, trade unions, the city, and hospitals. And beyond technological change, it is necessary to modify relationships and processes. showed up in one of today’s emails. I think maybe since it is probably 5 o’clock in Iceland maybe happy hour should start soon. My brain is tired from so much corroborating input of planned transformations at every level that is anything’s foundation.

      Adding this that I just got to.

      UN Development Programme. I think I feel ill. Lead-in to Chapter 2–

      The pandemic also can be understood as a warning sign, a probe into the structural weaknesses of our existing systems. It shows how futile it is to insist on facing 21st century challenges with the institutions and methods of 20th-century global governance.

      • Robin, with all respect due, I think you give way too much credence to these idiots, even by way of your efforts to track their antics.

        The mural defacers GOT a big win, in that 28 desperately-needed in other places cops are now tasked with guarding that stat-e-ment.

        That’s great…

        The defacers also reported on the racial demographic of BLM movement leaders, and how actual ‘Black’ people have been sidelined…SAME OLD, SAME OLD.

        I would say, a “good days work” for the mural schmeerer’s.


        • When someone has the legal ability to enact their transformative agenda and they have laid out what that agenda is, I do think we should follow where it goes and discuss what is really intended. is out today and worth looking at as this Network is based at CASBS in Palo Alto. I was also on the CASEL/ Committee for Children conference call yesterday laying out related plans in the name of SEL. A Deputy Super for Oregon, Carmen Urbina, had a slide announcing that Oregon has shifted to an Integrated Model of Mental Health & Wellbeing that now controls what goes on in its schools.

          It would have 4 Pillars of Practice: Trauma Informed, Strengths Based, Equity Centered, and SEL Driven. The call also included the head of schools in Ohio Paolo DeMaria and someone from Atlanta Public Schools. This template is being shifted in the direction James Comer dreamed about decades ago. I have covered john a poweel and his education vision before, but this targeted universalism cited by the Growth Mindset Network is quite clearly the Marxist Humanist Society. is from an Institute at UC-Berkeley, which is also where the Greater Good Science Center is, which has created so much curriculum to hasten this transformative K-12 shift.

          It is coming while parents are still worried about math.

          • Speaking of the shift this is also out today

            That’s the conversation we have to have, and the one we will be having August 10 through 12, during the virtual Assessment for Good conference. In circle conversations we will look at assessment from pedagogical, personal, relational, and ethical angles. We will talk about how traditional assessment and the illusion of “meritocracy” have held up systems of whiteness in our schools. Peel back the layers. What do we need to know about kids’ learning right now in this place? What is possible to know about a kid’s learning (at any distance)? What is the cost—to educators, to the community, and most especially to the kids—of trying to know that? How can we “find out where kids are” in a way that is truthful, drives kids to learn better, and supports them as full human beings living in a rough time?


    • Yes, and the irony was that she was defending the police. She mowed one of them down like a bowling ball, from what I remember of the video clip.

  14. Did some research, yesterday, toward the end of helping a COVID-19-impacted organization take its customer training programs online. Found several sources that maintained that corporate training programs — here we are talking about various IT skills, can be enriched by the inclusion, online, of Drag Queen storybook hours. NOT KIDDING.

    I believe this convention originated in Bela Kun’s Hungary — school curricula.

    • Not as disturbing but consistent with the global role of Ascending from the Abstract to the Concrete with political authority now dictating those abstractions and required categories of thought

      The features of the intellectual development of the personality have been the subject of various psychological and interdisciplinary studies for many decades, but recently, interest in this problem has grown significantly and has become a steady tendency. This can be explained by changes in modern society, where it is the human intellectual resources that acquire the main value that can qualitatively change and accelerate the development of the whole society as a whole (Gryshchenko, 2010,2012; Kichuk,2017;Prokopenko, 2018).The role of enterprises in preparing students is growing, as the digital age imposes certain requirements on future workers (Illiashenko, 2015; Koziuk, 2019). The world economy at the end of the 20th century entered the post-industrial stage of development. This is primarily due to trends in the increasing role of innovation, new scientific knowledge and information. The intellectualization of the economic environment, innovative entrepreneurship, the degree of mastery of information resources in the 21st century became a necessary basis for the existence of a highly efficient economy. Today, about 30% of all jobs in the most developed countries are already occupied by “intellectual workers” –creative, motivated, with developed intellect, capable of independently searching and analyzing huge amounts of information.The 21st century has been declared by UNESCO as the “Century of Education” (Morrisson, 2019). Knowledge, intelligence, culture, comprehensive education, intelligence should be a priority in the life of mankind. The education system and intellectual development are strategically important areas of human activity, the importance of which is steadily growing (Gontareva, 2019; Tkachenko, 2019).The concept of the formation of the content of education and teaching methods has led to the fact that the quality of knowledge and the level of development of a significant part of specialists are insufficient to occupy a worthy place in the economy of the 21st century. At the same time, the level of assimilation of knowledge substantially depends on the individual characteristics and intellectual abilities of youth, and the traditional educational system inhibits its intellectual development.

      is from the Ukraine but just uploaded to SSRN. with this title “Psychometric Measurement of Abilities As the Basis of an Individual Intellectual Resource of a Student”. I find translated documents to be unusually forthcoming on intent.

      • Do you have a copy you could send me? It has disappeared. Surprise surprise.

        s:// with this title “Psychometric Measurement of Abilities As the Basis of an Individual Intellectual Resource of a Student”

        • is still working for me.

          But yes I have it downloaded and hard copied. Honestly there is so much being put into place in the name of structural racism and the Pandemic that was long planned and needs virtual learning that I feel like the book and this blog was to teach me the requisite language and model so that I can now follow the attempt at full implementation in real time.

          Gracious I am tired.

    • This is out today. Programmed citizens who only ‘believe’ they are free from outside coercion as the previous link described the ability to think.

      Of course, like every other subject, the true test and value of civics and history extends far beyond academics and assessments. They are key to understanding how society functions and how students participate in the process. And for many teachers, the ongoing collision of racial, economic and health crises provide a visceral backdrop to such lessons.

      “Now more than ever, there’s a need for young people to be prepared to solve the issues that we face as a society, whether they be a global pandemic, climate change, racism or the political polarization we’re seeing in society,” says Ali Berry.

      Berry is the CEO of Composer, a civics education project that aims to help teachers find, combine and share resources to create engaging lesson plans for students. But beyond simply imparting knowledge, her team has higher ambitions: to bridge the gap between getting students to merely learn about civics—to actual civic engagement.

      Notice that Teaching Tolerance and Facing History and Ourselves are behind the experiences to get students to think of when the freedoms in 1st amendment should be limited, which would be rather contrary to why they are in the Bill of Rights in the 1st place. Same people who are manipulating curricula around ‘systemic racism’ and trauma caused by the Pandemic hype and business and school closings.

    • I, too, have read that Georg Lukacs introduced a prototype of the contemporary degenerate sex ed program into Hungarian schools during the brief Communist regime about 100 years ago. He went on to become associated with the Frankfurt School.

      • Did you see this?

        Now, students in Baltimore learn typical ELA skills like comprehension, figurative language, and sight reading by grounding them in concepts they’ve already covered in their social studies and science classes. ..
        Yet some educators aren’t aware of the cognitive science on reading comprehension—and the crucial role of privilege and background knowledge—and continue to administer tests and assignments that may inadvertently skew student performance, argues journalist Natalie Wexler, along with many cognitive science researchers. With access to greater resources, a child from a middle- or upper-class family is more likely to be taken on trips, attend events, or be exposed to experiences that deepen their cultural and social knowledge base. These experiences give them a foundation to process and understand difficult reading passages—context that peers from less-resourced families can lack.

        Need to provide the desired conceptual lenses in the name of Equity. Train students to make a habit to perceive the world theoretically, not factually. Same reason the 1619 Project’s creator just admitted its purpose is to control the national narrative, not to be a factual history of what happened, when, and why.

  15. That SSRN link appears to be dead, ;-).

    Here are my thoughts/perceptions based on a glut of internet foraging…bad habit of mine.

    1) I really like where Lindsay, et al, are taking their attempts to demarcate WOKE’NESS. I don’t have the patience for this, anymore, and think that their classical liberal positioning will prove inadequate to the task…but, I like the rigor they are bringing to this exercise.

    2) I was also enriched by several Mathew Rafael Johnson podcasts — guess he used to edit the Barnes Review — and related to what cynical degenerates early communist ‘leaders’ actually were. Frederick Engels seems to have been an early prototype for oligarchical excess, sexual and otherwise.

    3) Finally, I went back to a Jan Irwin and Joe Atwill podcast exploration of The Frankfurt School, MK-ULTRA and the JAC…and think that a passage Atwill hones in on in the Authoritarian Personality provides an explanation of the liberties we see being taken, now.


    Me to all of you: this stuff, all of this mauls my righteous, well-educated, axe maker-minded personhood, and I will NOT TOLERATE IT.


    Ultimately, it may come down to what that wonderful BLACK woman did in effacing the precious mural of ‘nonsense’. They cannot erase every “f-u” from every wall, all of the time, after all.

  16. We are facing a formidable hydra! Every time I turn around I run into something new that extends critical theory with a slight twist. More rewiring frameworks from Gholdy Muhammed,

    She was awarded the 2018 University of Illinois‐ Chicago, Researcher of Year, and recipient of a $750,000 U.S. Department of Education grant to study culturally and historically responsive literacy.

    ScholasticEd is hosting a PD event next week with Dr. Muhammad. (@GholdyM on Twitter) She wrote Cultivating Genius: An Equity Framework for Culturally and Historically Responsive Literacy

    The Framework:
    “- Identity Development: Helping youth to make sense of themselves and others
    – Skill Development: Developing proficiencies across the academic disciplines
    – Intellectual Development: Gaining knowledge and learning to think deeply
    – Criticality: Learning and developing the ability to read texts to understand power, equity, and anti-oppression”

    Identity and Criticality sure do get a lot of attention from “educators” these days.

    I also discovered something called textual lineages…”:Scholastic’s Global Literacy Campaign describes textual lineage as “a reading and writing autobiography which shows that who you are is in part developed through the stories and information you’ve experienced.” (from Teaching Tolerance website) Here’s a visual from a literacy expert in our county.

    I can imagine all that being recorded in a database somewhere and crunched by AI.

    • Well, Ms. Mohammed’s project constitutes a first-rate example of contemporary sophistry.

      I am currently writing up my own experience in submitting (4) different proposals for doctoral research and the responses I received.

      My FAILURE, evidently, was that I did not present, put on the table, an acceptable foregone conclusion, which I would reinforce with my ‘research’.

      For me, the most interesting aspects of the responses I received were that no relevant feedback was contained therein, and, they were RACIST.

      By RACIST, I mean that it was easy to detect that the study of groups possessed of certain skin tones, melanin levels, was IN VOGUE, while the study of groups with other melanin compliments was not relevant.

      My favorite comment was: “I guess Chinese people are people, too.”

      My mistake was in assuming that I was researching a discipline that had universal principles that could be applied and assessed across different population groups and contexts.

      I learned a LOT, took about fake, or perceived diversity in these exercises, with one auditor, HISPANIC, telling me that she experienced DIVERSITY when she ate California cuisine (fusion) that contained teriyaki sauce on a burrito.

      I would say that the parties managing this circus of programs and grants are all, technically, ‘white’, but managed to deflect attention from this fact by gifting proxy this or that’s with their largesse.

      This, for some reason, reminds me of a conversation I had online with members of a ‘global’ diversity forum, in which I was called a RACIST and bombarded with ‘blue-eyed/brown-eyed’ studies, and AFTER I offered that I was a green-eyed person (extreme minority) living on an island of brown-eyed people.

      I find this whole game to be DEEPLY cynical and possessed of a huge Wizzard of Oz factor.

      • It is really concerning when I review these Whole Learner Theories of Change and keep discovering just how much “Identity” is regarded as crucial to discern and then manipulate. Sounds to me like you encountered people who want to use the rhetorical tools without regard to the substance. It also bothers me to read that techniques that were ‘practiced’ in Australia, have now expanded to the US, Brazil, and China. With the latter I think of what they did to Hong Kong, which matters a great deal when ‘citizenship’ gets redefined as a willingness to act in the ‘long-term collective interest of humanity’ and that the impetus is ‘affective and behavioral’ and hardwired in with Peak Experiences to create motivation and then repeated practice.

        Then we get a digital platform so needed, useful experiences can be accessed to create the desired changes among a ‘critical mass’ of people. No wonder I wanted to take a nap when I got done with that reading. Apparently it was all to have been launched at this past March’s convention in Austin, Texas. Getting launched anyway and all these school closing because of the Pandemic here in the US will make this harder to see. Ties though to the same groups who created those ‘Tools’ for CASEL’s Roadmap to Reopening.

        • Yep, yep, yep…

          First of all, I think it is human nature to ascribe certain behaviors to certain cultural groups. This propensity is evident in my coaching practice on a daily basis…humans cannot rapidly sort and assess other humans w/o sometimes reverting to these constructs. Are all citizens of the PRC aggressive and ‘in your face’ in business encounters…no, they are not, but the Chinese have historically been quite assertive in their business dealings. Do all Swedish engineers under-communicate with their global stakeholders, probably not, but enough do for this to be a behavior associated with Swedish engineers.

          I was simply interested in better understanding how TWO Asian cultures perceived and utilized the activity of coaching — in organizations. Note, there had already been research performed in this area that indicated that many members of Asian cultures construed coaching as an a business advisory function, or a form of mentorship. I wanted to look at real data related to how a number of organizations across a number of sectors in Asia were utilizing this human development intervention. There was nothing ‘political’ about this…other than as was contained in my thesis that different cultures adopt and adapt coaching in different manners. Hardly controversial.

          I found the responses to be schizophrenic in so far as I was castigated for asserting that culture existed while being accused of being insensitive to what are, presumably, perceived by others as ‘racial’ differences.

          What I felt was that members of the academy — the Big Idea people — who can and do control research decisions do not engage real-world business environments. I also felt that the kumbayah culture cultivated in U.S. and other universities has become the model for very different kinds of structures.

          As always, I feel that your average Japanese schoolgirl has more situational awareness and common sense in the little finger of her left hand than does the combined constituency of the U.S. academy.

          • We have more confirmation, beyond my almost daily webinars this month, of the nature of the shift with the rationale being the Pandemic. Of course, this reminds me of the P-Tech push laid out in CtD.

   Notice all the references to “feedback-based assessment” instead of grades. Quite cybernetic. What’s the gap between what the student can do and what motivates them vs what is desired.

            Have another seminar this afternoon and one almost every day this week. The consistency of the vision is quite fascinating.

          • “[Schools, communities and parents] want to take the issues that students are concerned about and worried about, and social issues we’re seeing in the news feed, into the classroom for conversation,” Gutierrez said.

            So, daily news cycles engender classroom content, and project-based ‘learning’?

            Sounds like teachers will guide students into ‘learning’ that will transmute to activism.

            Is this how you see this?

          • Absolutely.

            It’s why I have briefly stopped writing to just listen. It’s not news to me but the widespread dissemination with visuals is rather incontrovertible.

          • Sorry to go back to my old cuddle called ‘est’, but the model is really the same. Participants are enticed/inducted with the idea that they will fulfill their own dreams and interests. This would be the equivalent of student-centered learning. Over time they subsume these interests to those of the organization, and via clever facilitation — something like Delphi.

            OK, what I learned from the Grievance Studies scholars is that:

            1) this movement is NOT explicitly Marxist but is rather a post-modern response to failed Marxist movements.
            2) critical theory first insinuated itself into edu — critical pedagogy (1980’s) — and this is why some university professors report that students are leading social justice culture, rather than the other way around.
            3) social justice ideology is based on a self-contained and fully-unified theoretical framework, it has its own epistemology.
            4) it is now functioning as a ‘creed’, meaning adherents subject no aspect of their belief system to critical review, or, rather utilize their own epistemology to rationalize belief.
            5) most importantly — they have developed no apologetics (other than name-calling) to rationalize their belief system. The grievance scholars consider this a HOPEFUL feature, in that sustainable movements, including Christianity, have been characterized by robust apologetics. (I am less optimistic).

            What these folks discovered in their review of the grievance study literature, what constituted research and peer review, suggests what kind of ‘projects’ might come out of student-centered, project-based learning. The blind are leading the blind, in essence.

  17. Another thing I would like to discuss is the current tyranny of the IRB. Peter Boghossian brought this up with regard to the Grievance Studies ‘Project’, meaning he/they were accused of violating in IRB standards in NOT having informed the journals they were hoaxing that they were being hoaxed. How Orwellian can you get?

    I was recently told that research I performed in Japan, and which entailed simple structured interviews of Japanese business leaders would not pass IRB guidelines. It was suggested to me that I had in some way abused individuals who had agreed to be interviewed, received the questions in advance, — who had to some degree TAILORED these queries, made suggestions — and who were asked to review their responses and to sign a permission to publish affidavit.

    Does anyone have any thoughts on how the IRB process is being used to stricture research?

    • A nice ironic use of the term by the mighty defender of the Church, Archbishop Vigano, in a biting letter to an Argentine bishop who has closed the best seminary in the country, thereby dispersing the seminarians to other seminaries that are so exemplary “that now they are empty”:

      “This decision is said to have been adopted, at your zealous insistence, by the Congregation for the Clergy, which considered inadmissible the refusal on the part of clerics under your jurisdiction to administer and receive the Most Holy Eucharist on the hand rather than on the tongue. I imagined that the laudable and coherent behavior of the priests, clerics, and faithful of San Rafael offered you an excellent excuse to close the largest seminary in Argentina and to disperse the seminarians in order to re-educate them elsewhere, in seminaries that are so exemplary that now they are empty. Your Excellency has done a very good job of translating the invitation to parrhesia [freedom, frankness] into action, in the name of which we are supposed to defeat the scourge of clericalism that has been denounced by the highest Throne.”

      It is clearly the term du jour.

      • Catholic Charities is one of the members of this WIN Network. I watched a webinar last week they were part of that I followed through those High Resolve footnotes in their Theory of Change along with recognizing who john powell is and his theory of education and work with Linda Darling-Hammond in the past with philanthropies.

        WIN begins with a recognition that the legacies of the past and the policies, structures, and beliefs we choose to live with shape our current reality. Some of these have led to well-being, dignity, and inclusion. Others, such as our legacy of slavery and structural racism continue to perpetuate trauma, poor health, and exclusion. These past legacies of exclusion affect communities across the country today. They trap a hundred million people to participate, prosper, and reach their full potential.

        This is a legacy moment in our nation. It is our obligation to make decisions today that will expand the vital conditions of health and well-being. In doing so, we will move toward a thriving, interconnected, more equitable world today and over generations. This is why WIN exists.

        This is the website for the vision just launched

        I should have more on this early next week if I can keep my ducks lined up here. College grad now home with two rescue kittens she was fostering who apparently did not enjoy their first plane flight, especially the sensation of takeoff.


    “Did the WHO have any indicators of this mildness when it declared the pandemic in June?

    Absolutely, as I wrote at the time. We were then fully 11 weeks into the outbreak and swine flu had only killed 144 people worldwide–the same number who die of seasonal flu worldwide every few hours. (An estimated 250,000 to 500,000 per year by the WHO’s own numbers.) The mildest pandemics of the 20th century killed at least a million people.

    But how could the organization declare a pandemic when its own official definition required “simultaneous epidemics worldwide with enormous numbers of deaths and illness.” Severity–that is, the number of deaths–is crucial, because every year flu causes “a global spread of disease.”

    Easy. In May, in what it admitted was a direct response to the outbreak of swine flu the month before, WHO promulgated a new definition matched to swine flu that simply eliminated severity as a factor. You could now have a pandemic with zero deaths.

    Under fire, the organization is boldly lying about the change, to which anybody with an Internet connection can attest. In a mid-January virtual conference WHO swine flu chief Keiji Fukuda stated: “Did WHO change its definition of a pandemic? The answer is no: WHO did not change its definition.” Two weeks later at a PACE conference he insisted: “Having severe deaths has never been part of the WHO definition.”

    They did it; but why?

    In part, it was CYA for the WHO. The agency was losing credibility over the refusal of avian flu H5N1 to go pandemic and kill as many as 150 million people worldwide, as its “flu czar” had predicted in 2005.

    Around the world nations heeded the warnings and spent vast sums developing vaccines and making other preparations. So when swine flu conveniently trotted in, the WHO essentially crossed out “avian,” inserted “swine,” and WHO Director-General Margaret Chan arrogantly boasted, “The world can now reap the benefits of investments over the last five years in pandemic preparedness.”

    But there’s more than bureaucratic self-interest at work here. Bizarrely enough, the WHO has also exploited its phony pandemic to push a hard left political agenda.

    In a September speech WHO Director-General Chan said “ministers of health” should take advantage of the “devastating impact” swine flu will have on poorer nations to get out the message that “changes in the functioning of the global economy” are needed to “distribute wealth on the basis of” values “like community, solidarity, equity and social justice.” She further declared it should be used as a weapon against “international policies and systems that govern financial markets, economies, commerce, trade and foreign affairs.”

    • They need a ‘Pandemic, to hype health risks and create mass economic dislocation and the charges of structural or systemic racism to justify public policy dictating who can do what and be what at all levels of society. They justify the desired “new mental models” is from today.

      High Resolves said its Theory of Change and concept of ‘civic engagement’ to be inculcated at a neural level was based on Schelling’s book Micromotives and Macrobehaviors. I strated reading it yesterday and what they are saying is there is a desire for education, my field, or coaching, which is yours, to get at ‘hearts and minds, motivations and habits” that underlay all behavior. That’s the level of intervention to create a managed society.

      I have 3 more webinars this afternoon so even more confirmations. Things should slow down next week. It has been a busy July for confirming research, just not writing.

      I did just finish making a salsa verde with roasted tomatillos, onions, and jalapenos.

      Adding this quote from that article, which certainly reminds us again of what CtD first laid out. It always comes back to ed that functions as Tranzi OBE.

      Once we recognize that we all have mental models and that they affect our beliefs, our actions and ultimately the ways our systems operate, we can no longer allow those mental models to remain hidden. Systems thinking offers tools for making mental models explicit, and simple conversation can also uncover the ways in which different people see reality. We must reflect on our own mental models, share them, seek to understand others’ and, where possible, align our collective mental models with the future we hope to see.

      Extraordinary circumstances are rightly leading more and more people to scrutinize the social systems that determine how young people experience education. Now is the time to consider:

      How willing are we to allow those circumstances to shift our mental models?
      How willing are we to let go of our sense of certainty about how the world works and examine our opportunities, challenges and solutions through a new set of filters?

      Our collective answer to those questions will determine whether our education systems can transform to be just, joyful and life-affirming or whether they will end up as a slightly different version of what they have always been.

      • “Once we recognize that we all have mental models and that they affect our beliefs, our actions and ultimately the ways our systems operate, we can no longer allow those mental models to remain hidden. Systems thinking offers tools for making mental models explicit, and simple conversation can also uncover the ways in which different people see reality. We must reflect on our own mental models, share them, seek to understand others’ and, where possible, align our collective mental models with the future we hope to see.”

        This passage reminded me of one of the LAST ‘dialogues’ I had with a group of coaches. The topic was “the experience of women in the workplace”….ARGH. First of all, the group was comprised of coaches working in the U.S., EU, UAE, and Asia, but it was assumed that women, the world over, experience the same workplace.

        A London-based female coach worked herself into paroxysms describing male microaggressions, which included men spreading their arms on conference tables and manspreading under conference tables. She assumed this entailed a grand conspiracy to DOMINATE SPACE.

        Those of us on the call who were actually concerned with improving conditions for women in our environments attempted to present ‘data’ related to expanding opportunities in the UAE and Asia. I also offered global 360 data, which indicated that co-workers (bosses, peers, subordinates) rated women as equal to men in strategic thinking and planning, and superior to men in people management. I also offered to share my literature review — a master thesis focusing on this very topic.

        There was NO INTEREST in evidence that did not support the grand conspiracy of male on female oppression — the model in their heads.

        James Lindsay refers to all of this as “crazy land”. I decided I could not live there, anymore.

        • This fits.

          Though the pandemic continues to unsettle, disrupt, and challenge communities, we might take a moment to appreciate and applaud the diversity, breadth, and scope of our responses—from individual actions to national policies—and even more important, to reflect on how they will produce a post–Covid-19 world far better than the world that preceded it.

          In this brief essay, I describe how our adaptive responses to the coronavirus will lead to beneficial policy innovations. I do so from the perspective of a many-model thinker.1 By that I mean that I will use several formal models to theoretically elucidate the potential pathways to creating a better world. I offer this with the intent that it instills optimism that our current efforts to confront this tragic and difficult challenge will do more than combat the virus now and teach us how to combat future viruses. They will, in the long run, result in an enormous number of innovations in policy, business practices, and our daily lives.

          The whole series is alarming and consistent with my hypothesis on the true ties that bind these ‘crises’. I guess you have seen the sickening stuff rolling out about Epstein. Yuck.

          I am adding in that the targeting of mental models, which are the micro level, at the same time there is so much interest in modelling the transformation of the world and its primary institutions at a macro level is coincidental at all.

          One thing I have found fascinating from so many webinars where I am the outlier and most attendees are teachers or administrators is how little they are being told about the true reasons for the shifts. Instead they get a brain-based sales pitch to “Make Learning Stick” or create resilience in traumatized young people.

          • “The whole series is alarming and consistent with my hypothesis on the true ties that bind these ‘crises’. I guess you have seen the sickening stuff rolling out about Epstein. Yuck.”

            Have been following this for a long time. This is the tip of the iceberg. COVID is a great distraction, though.

            As far as appreciating and applauding the ‘diversity’ of our responses — I surveyed the denizens/citizens of my shopping street, yesterday…the folks who are trying to keep their small businesses afloat. Nobody believes this crap…I am happy to say. They have installed bizarre and ineffectual clear plastic screens to thwart the spread of the virus, that never spread, here. I guess you could call this ‘innovation’. Nobody believes it.

            On the teacher and administrator faction, you are interfacing with…I was listening to a Curtis Yankin podcast, today. He is better known as the alt-right iconoclast, Mencius Moldbug. He was describing how his grade schoo-age children (S.F. private school) confronted him after the Trump election. They were very grave and believed the world was ending. One wanted to know “how they would go to the beach after Trump built his wall. The indoctrinators are positioned in K-12, clearly.

  19. On Epstein — someone should revisit the Martin Nowak project — PED, Program for Evolutionary Dynamics — as funded by Epstein at Harvard.

    The MSM has framed this thing as an attempt to resuscitate Epstein’s image. The researcher ,Charlie Robinson ,points out that the endowment was 30,000,000, and that Epstein and his cohort would have been expecting more than image enhancement for this sum. Per Robinson, the project seemed to have something to do with the modeling of how human populations behave in response to various crises. That would make sense, given the program title.

    Somebody should look into this!!!

    • Will swap. OMG.

      Still hope to write this week. Lots of family issues that have to come first though and they certainly get in the way of concentration.

      Adding this from that article because it goes to pretending we are dealing with a PANDEMIC, even if that is no longer (or never was) a reasonable description of the actual risk.

      Planning to reopen school during a pandemic is almost an oxymoron. It is essential as I have argued elsewhere that we be rock-solid clear on our values and our beliefs about learners and learning, as that north star can guide us in these stormy seas. Yet we must have the courage to take strong leadership positions and the humility to be willing to acknowledge when we have made a mistake and reframe. And in the middle of this complexity we cannot be certain about the perfect steps to take to achieve a vision of school fulfilling its responsibility to our emerging next generation of leaders, our young learners. We are going to need “maximum tactical flexibility” and significantly broadened participation of everyone in making this work. Challenging and breaking away from the tired, old assumptions and habits of mind of white supremacy culture is one way we can make it work for all our young people and our communities.


    Beginning at: 200:45 — some practical advice for dealing with workplace “diversity” programs. I applaud the suggestion that one volunteer to LEAD the program or to participate on any committee that is implementing this training. Also, the advice to consider oneself a potential ‘plaintiff’ and to document the content of these programs with an eye toward taking legal action.

      • Yes, and Kamala Harris, who was in my law school section, is the progeny of slave owners (Jamaica). What a hoot!

        On re-education camp, the worst story I have heard came from a U.K. social worker (Yemeni) who describes his skin tone as ‘white’. His PC infraction entailed protesting the housing of adult Muslim male ‘refugees’ in facilities occupied by damaged teenage girls. This earned him re-education training that he might examine his ‘whiteness’.

        James Lindsay has come around to defining ‘wokeness’ as a religious belief system…which may open vistas for legal action.

      • More proof that the Pandemic is the excuse for a substantial shift

        Participants in these workshops, designed and facilitated by KnowledgeWorks, explored how to shape and reshape a future of learning in the region that is just, equitable and learner-centered. Three aspirational focal points guided conversations:

        Committing to helping every learner, family and community flourish and to making learning equitable by renegotiating power imbalances, dismantling barriers, promoting anti-racist practices and affording more supports and opportunities to learners of greatest need while working alongside them, valuing their experiences and supporting and honoring their voices, strengths, potential and dignity
        Igniting engaging and relevant learning practices that support learners’ and educators’ health, wellness and human development and which cultivate their capacity to navigate rapid social and technological change
        Prioritizing meaningful relationships among learners and their families, peers, educators and mentors; forging engaged partnerships; negotiating power dynamics; and helping learners develop cross-cultural understandings and social capital that unlock opportunities to thrive

        Participants built upon these focal points to identify key attributes for the future of learning.

        Remember too that Lauren Resnick is at U-Pittsburgh and Carnegie-Mellon is basically HQ for the online learning cybernetic template now built into the LMS’s that are essential to the now required hybrid learning.

        I think dealing with hospice care may be one of the saddest things I have ever done, especially with the restrictions imposed because of the lockdowns. It certainly puts life, and how each of us lives it, into perspective.

        • I am so sorry to hear of your hospice experience and the restrictions imposed.

          On the usefulness of the pandemic in driving certain agendas, I looked at the stats for my home state, CA. In doing so, my first thought was that 10,000 dead, while tragic, was a long shot from the 2,000,000, Gavin Newsom said would be imperiled by the virus. My other thought was ‘why’ such pains were being taken to track infection rates by ethnicity. I don’t recall HIV/AIDS infections being tracked this way — though they possible were. I thought it REALLY odd that the stats for a group called ‘Hispanic’ (which is broad cultural and linguistic designation) were so out of wack, so much higher than that of other groups. I wondered what political hay will be made of this in CA, and by whom.

          Think I mentioned a while back that I had attended an online focus group on coping with Covid-19, sponsored by my CA-based, SJW graduate school. I recall that they were surveying the experience of the ‘Hispanic’ community and rueing the fact that more people had not responded to their queries.

          I heard, too, from a friend living in CA that email messages are being sent by gov agencies to various groups, informing that cloth masks are now deemed ineffective in preventing transmission of the virus and respirator masks and goggles are now recommended. KRIMENY, this looks likes on-going bad science all the way around, or maybe like a big ‘ice bucket challenge’ to see how far certain groups will go in trying to protect themselves. I found that JPL had designed digitally-printable respirator masks.

          I also wonder at how homogeneous populations like the one I live in, are going to process and promote the race-based equity in education platforms that seem to be, being rolled out globally.

          It just gets crazier and crazier.

          • I does get crazier, but there has also been a consistency to what is being sought and the now repeated open admission that we all need “new kinds of mental models” to be the ideal citizens for the collectivism and organized society being anticipated for us.

            Speaking of your specialty,

            Hopefully I can catch a break next week and get something new up. I realized last night that yesterday was the first day in bout the last ten that nothing happened with my dad in terms of phone calls and changes. Someone who was physically capable of hiking to crown of the Statue of Liberty at 80, about 7 years after his Alzheimers’ diagnosis has a sturdy constitution. I will say that all my neuroscience research these past several years has helped me to grasp the essence of some of what is going wrong with neurodegenerative deterioration. The loss of memory is truly only a symptom.

          • I just reviewed a coaching for kids program in KL, or rather a program to teach kids how to coach each other.

            Problem, reaction, solution.

            Japan just past the 1,000 dead of Covid-19 mark. I am positive these people were in their 80’s, 90’s, and would have succumbed to colds, flu, etc.

            It is my impression, now, that despite the non-crisis, many businesses will continue to conduct work remotely, and, indefinitely. Many businesses, service firms, restaurants are just going out of business.

            Who is it that has the power to compel nations to kill their own economies? This is pure evil.

          • As for what ‘they’ want, I think there is nothing new to see here folks. I was really struck my James Lindsay’s warning to CEO’s and to the effect that they should guard their orgs against WOKE HR. He called this mob rule, and likened it to sending the organization to a gulag.

            HE IS RIGHT.

            I saw this dynamic play out in my graduate university. I was returning to the academic world in mid-career and was a bit nervous about my skills. Two weeks into the program, I received an illicit communication from a professor who was studying in my section. She warned me that the program was being taught at two grade levels below the norm, and that if I wanted to derive any value from it, I should avoid A,B,C courses, and X,Y, Z professors. After taking “A” course, I took her advice.

            So, yeh, they had completely dumbed it down…and did so that they could provide an equitable and meaningful experience to ALL students.

            They also, eventually, ran out of the program all professors who were teaching at an appropriate level — there were the people who build the department!!!

            Stage Three — and, it is like cancer staging, they replaced these professors with products of their own program.

            Stage Four — and it is why I was asking about academic contracts — they used their academic platform for business and consulting purposes. Yes, many business professors do this…they sell their books, and do some consulting — but this is different…there is something different, more insidious going on…more like a metastatic invasion of other organizations, cultures. The academic platform it the springboard for this ‘activism’ — which is, coincidentally, VERY lucrative.

          • This quote from a 2019 paper referenced in the Playbook for Student Success reminded me of your grad school story.

            Teachers equalize interactions between high and low-status students by structuring tasks to help them recognize and use their multiple abilities, as students draw on different competencies to accomplish a group task. Teachers can also “assign competence” to a student by recognizing the student’s contributions to the group task through public statements conferring a positive evaluation on to the students’ effort, thus boosting participation of low-status students without restraining the participation of high-status students. These moves produce strong learning gains and reduce achievement gaps among student groups(Cohen & Lotan,2014).

            In successful use of cooperative approaches, teachers often help students structure roles within the group and provide questions and tasks that guide the group’s discussion. For example, in a review of 94 studies which focused on the conditions for high quality discussion in science teams, the authors concluded that:
            A successful stimulus for students working in small groups to enhance their understanding of evidence has two elements. One requires students to generate their individual prediction, model or hypothesis which they then debate in their small group. The second element requires them to test, compare, revise or develop that jointly with further data provided(Hogarth et al.,2004). Teachers play an active role in constructing the tasks and questions that help students learn to coordinate their work and frame their ideas in terms that reflect the modes of inquiry in the discipline. These efforts support the development of social, cognitive and academic skills while also developing student agency and the ability to reflect on and evaluate ideas.

            A previous page calls on the instructor to create “a bridge between students’ experiences and school content [that] can be built using a cultural modeling approach that draws on the familiar to make the structure of the domain visible and explicit to students.”

            It also explains my reaction to younger lawyers in CLE programs as they seem to have ‘feelings’ about the law and its use more than knowledge. If I ask a fact-based question based on a lifetime of extensive reading and paying attention, I get the same kind of looks the Greeks would have used had they encountered the Hydra while out on a boat ride.

          • This is the paper and notice how often the phrase ‘reduce cognitive load’ is used.

            It also uses the phrase “free up their minds” over and over as if that’s a good thing and not itself the much harangued ‘rote’. Reminds me of the Arationality concept we first encountered in the Paul Ehrlich/ Robert Ornstein book from 1989 on New Kinds of Minds needed. We later encountered the same term from the Dreyfus brothers discussing overthrowing the Western Conception of rationality and in Flyvberg’s work on what competency and proficiency really mean that got him a professorate at Oxford.

            It truly is all coming together down to references that are described but not cited like describing Urie Bronfenbrenner’s work but simply calling it ‘ecological systems theory’ without using his name. I guess maybe because I have written about his ties to Luria, Leontiev, and the development of CHAT-Culturally Historical Activity Theory.

          • Notice the reference to ascertaining and then manipulating ‘mental models’ and then the use of misinformation to get to ‘innoculation’. So much manipulation at this level going on.

            Second, we need to understand people’s mental models and processes related to the risk of contracting COVID-19. In other words, we should establish if there is any empirical support for the ideas of rationalization, habituation, or rejection in the context of COVID-19. For example, people could be asked to rate the likelihood that they have had COVID-19 (and their reasons why). Then they could be offered an antibody test, recognizing that these tests are not perfect. Comparing these two data sources could help to identify when beliefs are accurate and when they could be the result of rationalization.

            Third, we should explore people’s expectations and concerns about a potential vaccine itself. A first wave of surveying has examined concerns in a broad way. But we also need a more detailed understanding of people’s fears and expectations. Are people more concerned by a vaccine that is chimpanzee-derived than one that uses an inactivated form of the virus itself? Do people think the vaccine will be a once-and-done shot, or the start of a series of yearly visits?

            Only by gaining this understanding can vaccine advocates consider effective ways of increasing uptake. Appropriately enough, one option is “inoculation theory”: by giving people a weakened version of misinformation in advance, along with refutations, they may be less likely to believe it in the future. But, like the vaccines themselves, much work is needed—soon—to turn these ideas into reality.


          • More reasons LMS’s must become obligatory.

            AI’s implication in education needs to be viewed in terms of ethics, security and human rights. At the core of the debate are issues that include rights for the collection, use, storage and analysis of data. Thanks to new technology, data can be gathered on almost anything related to what humans undergo during learning processes, including cognitive and socio-emotional features, bio-signals, facial/body expressions, behavioral actions, how they react in their surroundings and environment as well as the role of health, entertainment and sport. AI capabilities can categorize and profile people based on many features and bias data through algorithms. Collected data can augment people’s learning journeys but may also help subjugate people if clear ethical principles of data transparency, security and rights are not in place. To take full advantage of AI in education, policy level decisions of governance are needed as well as new pedagogical developments.

            I am trying to distract myself from the reality of losing my dad. One of the few who actually died from Alzheimers instead of something else while suffering from Alzheimers. Apparently very rare.

  21. Question for Robin:

    This relates to university instructor contracts/agreements.

    Can you suggest a resource for understanding what are the general terms of instructor agreements in the U.S.?

    I am interested in ‘non-solicitation’ clauses; proscriptions related to sitting on corporate boards; proscriptions related to consulting activities and entrepreneurial endeavors.


    • Hi Lee. Thanks for that. To put it into more context–


      How can we reach our highest potential as individuals, operate most effectively in society, and push the bounds of human capability if we are not able to consciously manage our own bodies, thoughts, and emotions? In the field of education, we need to shift our focus toward cultivating self-awareness in youth and teaching them how to effectively manage their internal worlds as much as their outer worlds. To do this, we must help teachers first. Teachers need to hone the skills of self-inquiry, self-awareness, and self-management, as well as learn strategies for instilling these capacities in students.
      We need to revolutionize the way we prepare and support teachers. I foresee a future where we develop and implement novel approaches for imparting contemplative insights (e.g., self- compassion, mindful awareness) during teacher preparation and development to foster adaptive beliefs, well-being, and motivation in teachers. These approaches will draw upon insights from behavioral science, wise social-psychological interventions, and contemplative trainings (e.g., mindfulness trainings). Tailored to teachers’ contexts and rigorously tested, these brief and innovative interventions can serve as a promising path for supporting teachers and ultimately students.

      Rebecca Nyquist Baelen is a Ph.D. candidate in education policy at the University of Pennsylvania.

      Good education is a fundamental human right. Still, it’s a distant dream in many parts of the world. Education for all, then, is a big goal for the decade. The outlook for democratizing education is positive if we turn to new solutions: online learning.

      Our sensibilities, however, aren’t primed for new modalities of pedagogy. Human history has been one of brick-and-mortar learning, in real classrooms. To adapt, we need new habits. Some will be digital, and work to counter the attention deficit crisis—ironically, a byproduct of the digital revolution. The prognosis: we need behavioral interventions not imagined before.
      Multidisciplinary data will help us design the right strategies to architect learning habits. These interventions will catalyze digital learning, and let us track, analyze, and predict actions to continuously evolve our approach, revolutionizing the way humans learn. This is the future of behavioral science.

      Changes are afoot; online learning is gaining momentum. The question now isn’t if we need behavioral interventions to help online learners learn better, but when they will take root. We look forward to an exciting new decade—hopefully, one where the right to education, opportunity, and equality is actionable.

      Rachika Komal is a behavioral researcher, graduate of Christ University, Bangalore (India). Soumya Bahuguna is a communications strategist and an economics major from the Shri Ram College of Commerce, University of Delhi (India).

      There is no doubt that in the next decade, behavioral science will be used more and more by governments and private organizations to change behavior. To ensure ethical use behavioral science needs to be taught more at schools and colleges, for two main reasons. Firstly, because it will help each of us decode when and why behavioral science may be influencing us as consumers and citizens. Secondly, because we should all be able to apply behavioral science, for good, in our professional life, either ourselves or with the help of behavioral scientists. The challenge for behavioral scientists in the next decade: create a generation of young adults that are aware of behavioral science bases.
      Étienne Bressoud is co-founder and deputy CEO of the BVA Nudge Unit.

      From here

      • “To ensure ethical use behavioral science needs to be taught more at schools and colleges, for two main reasons. Firstly, because it will help each of us decode when and why behavioral science may be influencing us as consumers and citizens. Secondly, because we should all be able to apply behavioral science, for good, in our professional life, either ourselves or with the help of behavioral scientists.”

        I don’t see how “ethical use” follows from the teaching of behavioral science at schools and colleges. Doesn’t the concept “Nudge” come from the Cass Sunstein and Thaler’s book about how to help the great, unwashed masses make better decisions?

        Doesn’t ‘nudge’ connote covert manipulation?

        Spare us, please.

        • I finally got a chance to finish the unesco paper linked to on a New Zealand site-Think Beyond Ltd.–that I had not seen referred to in US on the so-called future of education and it is shockingly graphic about what is in store for all of us all over the world in the name of Education. It is called “Humanistic Futures of Learning: Perspectives from UNESCO Chairs and UNITWIN Networks”.

          Then there is also this just out

          There is an urgent need for more effective strategies to support young children by confronting poverty, racism, violence, housing instability, food insecurity, and other sources of chronic adversity that impose significant stresses on their families. Services and supports must move beyond a sole focus on children and parents to an intentional, “upstream” focus on macro-level policies that systematically threaten the health and wellbeing of families affected by structural inequities and systemic racism. Science-informed thinking combined with on-the-ground expertise and the lived experiences of families raising young children under a wide variety of conditions (many of whom are typically marginalized) can be a powerful catalyst of new ideas.

 which becomes the excuse for a managed world with ‘wellbeing’ as the excuse for control in all of these visions.

          Interesting infographic here from the same group at Harvard that calls its podcast “The Brain Architects”.

          • Robin, I will review all of the above, and come back on it.

            I just wanted to reflect a bit more on my grad school experience.

            On the first day of our on-site program, also the first day of the program, itself, we received a lecture on adult learning theory. The lecturer, who was a product of Harvard edu, stated that ‘most’ adults learn better in groups. I asked for the actual statistic. He said, ‘most’ was 75%. I said, “I am a member of the 25% of adults who CANNOT learn in a group.” He said, “OK”. Going forward, I was assigned work separately, work that I could do independently unless the point of the course was to complete a project as a team. (So, by defining myself, in their eyes, as a person with a DISABILITY, I was able to work at my own level, which was higher than that of the groups, in most cases.)

            As for equalizing level of learning, and ESTEEM in group-based projects, what I saw was the birth of skilled ‘social loafers’. These were people who had figured out who was sharp, who was hard-working, and they jumped on these teams to reap the status based on other people’s work. There was no compunction about doing this, whatsoever, and facilitators never called out this behavior — EVER.

            I saw the same behavior when I co-taught MBA courses at a Japanese university, where all learning was group-based, all projects rated as a group achievement. It would have been possible to matriculate through these courses doing almost no work, if one was clever in attaching oneself to certain teams.

            I don’t know how these people became so deluded about what is human nature, and I wonder how many of them got where they are by “socially loafing” their way through team-based learning. I would assume the percentage is pretty HIGH.

            On another front, I am reading Darrell Hamamoto’s, “Servitors of Empire”, which documents the use and exploitation of Asian students by elite U.S. universities. These people form quite a brain trust, but they are rarely permitted to ascend to professorships. This limbo-land they exist in renders them quite vulnerable to exploitation, and use in covert projects.

            Also, and post-program, I brought to the institution’s attention that at least two ESL students (Japanese) had been contracting out their work to family members, or others.

            I was told that the school had no ability to assess this activity or to penalize it. I assume this activity is rampant in distance learning.

            I think all of

  22. I don’t think they’re deluded about human nature. I think they believe that Social Justice demands Loafers Rights. The phenomenon you describe has been around for a long time. And it’s not just that of freeloading; often the sharp and motivated members cannot prevail against the downward drag of the Loafers, who do not merely sponge but undermine results. One of my sons, who ended up being a spelling champion, used to have to submit to majority rule in elementary school regarding correct spelling when the students were broken out into groups to work on their spelling exercises. To take the other end of the academic spectrum, consider this metamorphosis of the time-honored Oxbridge tutorial system. I am lifting from something I wrote some time back:

    It would seem that the Socratic seminar is in competition with the tutorial system that has been a distinctive feature of university education in the Oxford and Cambridge for hundreds of years. The shift in favor of the seminar seems to reflect a “group” emphasis that downplays individual academic performance in favor of the principle of equity and inclusion. The tutorial places the student under the spotlight and requires him to acquit himself individually. Robert Beck refers to this as the “nowhere to hide” principle. He notes that the seminar, in contrast, provides plenty of space to hide. Although the objective may be egalitarian, “levels of student participation will vary and some students, inevitably, who are unprepared, more passive generally, or just weaker, will hide out to one degree or another….Student Z may fall through the cracks and in the competitive spirit of the group, the instructor may be tempted to feel that Z will just have to learn by listening to X and Y.” Thus do human hierarchies reassert themselves and overwhelm efforts to level and equalize, demonstrating yet again that “some are more equal than others.”

    • Very interesting. Don’t Cambridge and Oxford also adhere to trivium/quadrivium methodology in their instruction, logic, grammar and rhetoric being tools necessary to formulate and defend the ‘individual’s’ position?

      Apropos of all of this, I will share an experience I had.

      An acquaintance and I had a common question about the NIST report on the collapse of a certain structure in NYC. This was a MATH question that was beyond our respective abilities. In our circle was a material scientist trained at Boston University and MIT. We logically reasoned that this person’s math skills were up to the task of answering our question. We asked it.

      Rather than running the numbers relevant to the material in question, steel, this individual engaged in big data research to see what percentage of auditors of the event arrived at X, Y, or Z conclusion. Metallurgical properties were less important to the answer he formulated than were the perceptions of various groups.

      I think this kind of ‘thinking’ is now operant in how people assess Coronavirus statistics. It is also how and why individuals I know find it plausible to blame Donald Trump for forest fires in California, or, previously, tropical storms that hit the American South East. We seem to be returning to a pre-rational state.

  23. In the math case you referenced, you also have to factor in politics and ideology. Objective facts and logical analysis have a way of going down the tubes in hot-button cases where the establishment narrative or “court history” is being challenged. Look at what the “science” of covid amounts to. I just came across another relevant example in a debate between two prominent Catholic figures about whether Francis is a validly elected pope. The writer who is challenging the validity writes of his opponent:

    “The first honest way to enter a debate is not to open by saying that those who disagree with you are psychologically of doubtful sanity or suffer from psychosis (inability to accept reality). But that is what Father Harrison does, by saying that the thesis of his opponents [is] an opinion which disagrees with 5000 less 2 Bishops and 100% of the Cardinals. Therefore, he argues you should dismiss it on grounds that the world considers it improbable.

    “This is not the proper way to argue. Since truth is not determined by a vote, the truth can be that which the majority might disagree with. But also, Father is arguing ex silentio. Because clearly 99% of the Church has never examined the evidence for or against the validity of the Papal resignation.”

    The trivium and quadrivium – thereby hangs a tale, and long and complicated one, which has a contemporary chapter which I have been sharply critical of. But not to get too far into the weeds, the seven “liberal arts” actually have their roots in classical times, and with Christianity became the fundamental elements of monastic and cathedral education. As the universities emerged they became centers of specialized training in other subjects such as philosophy and theology, medicine and canon and civil law. But parts of the seven “liberal arts” were mixed in with this curriculum, which continued to expand to include other subjects through the centuries. In the 19th century, the great universities, including Oxford and Cambridge, were still using the technique of the medieval Scholastics, the “disputatio,” an exercise in Aristotelian dialectic or logic, to defend propositions in the classroom or in examinations for degrees. There was even the occasional Catholic college in the United States that continued the practice until recent decades. I would be surprised if Oxford and Cambridge have retained any vestige of this kind of training. The adoption of the “Socratic seminar,” referenced earlier, suggests that those standards of rigorous axe-maker intellectual exertion have yielded to the softened discipline of the college bull session.

    • I had heard a ‘lite’ version of this tale, but thanks for the expanded one.

      I would like to talk to you more about this by email.

    • Did you see this?

      Look what the ‘conservative’ remedy is–

      Places such as Hillsdale College already offer some form of K-12 classical education, but it’s time that conservative legislators offer that kind of teaching as a widespread alternative to home-schooling parents…For too long, Republicans assumed that if they just relied on the free market, parents would pick a more conservative education for their children. But that isn’t always the case. Conservatives can use the state to incentivize parents to pursue this type of education and impress upon children the values that we take for granted.

      Use the state to mandate the Barney Template so that everyone is forced into the KSAVE as the target, shift away from a factual orientation. It’s not news to us, but it fits with both of our concerns.

      Made it through yesterday and the weather thankfully cooperated. Sad that there will be no more chances to try to figure out how to reach my dad. His last audible utterance though was about a month ago and I decided to bring Pat the Bunny with me to an outdoor visit. I had it sitting on the table when they wheeled him out. I told him I had brought him something and could he say hi to the bunny. He looked at it and said “Hi, Bunny”.

  24. “by saying that the thesis of his opponents [is] an opinion which disagrees with 5000 less 2 Bishops and 100% of the Cardinals. Therefore, he argues you should dismiss it on grounds that the world considers it improbable.”

    OK, in addition to their TRUTH is determined by its popularity thingy…there is another thingy they do with inconvenient popularly determined TRUTHS, and this is the shelf life thingy.

    So, when an old ‘cracker’ from the South asks a CNN panel of morons if a political convention which had devoted itself to the virtues of “character”, should feature as a speaker, Bill Clinton…we get, “well that happened a long time ago…”

    So a character issue can be TRUE at one time, but not TRUE at another…

    You can erase history by removing statues, or revise it entirely in the classroom.

    I can report that when I began floating balloons in my own field…throwing up red flags about ‘character issues’, practice issues involving certain parties — the responses were, “Well, that happened a long time ago…”, or, “Who knows about this?”…Not one ounce of compassion for the victims, which is ALL of us at this point.

    Just read a Mother Jones’ piece, which is trying to reframe Jeffrey Epstein as a victim who suffered from ‘satyriasis’….he literally could not help himself!!!

    • The issue is never the issue. And in addition to shelf life, don’t forget about “follow the money.”

      Interesting comment in an article about the heretical philosopher Paul Feyerbend on the reigning religion of scientism, with a glancing reference to the Church that bears on the intellectual legacy of Scholastic disputation:

      “Similarly, though he said ‘astrology bores me to tears,’ Feyerabend played devil’s advocate in its defense in response to a pompous 1975 public statement denouncing it that was signed by 186 scientists, including eighteen Nobel Prize winners. He showed that the signatories simply did not understand, or care to understand, the actual views of the people they were condemning, but merely parroted clichés and rested their case on their authority as scientists rather than on arguments reflecting knowledge of the subject matter. Though not religious, Feyerabend compared the signatories unfavorably to the practice of the Church in thoroughly mastering and answering the arguments of the heretics that she condemns. Again, what Feyerabend favored was debate between opinions rather than denunciations, suppression, and appeals to authority. In his view, neither the Church nor science should be permitted such tactics.”

      Scientism: America’s State Religion
      Edward Feser

      • Great article! Reminds me of George Feyneman’s ancient CalTech commencement address on cargo cults and science.

        Looks like Covid-19 will be the cargo cult the replaces HIV/AIDS, which in turn replaced the DNA/Cancer cult. As you say, the issue is never the issue.


    It has come to my attention that the Pritzker fortune (think Hyatt Hotels) was built on that family’s acquisition for pennies on the dollar of assets confiscated from Japanese Americans who were placed in internment camps during WWII. Apparently, Japanese immigrants had bound an economic niche in running boarding houses, inns, and restaurants. These assets were purchases and repurposed by the Pritzker clan.

    I know that the SJW’ing Pritzger’s will want to set this right, ASAP, so I am founding the YLM movement.


    I have reported previously on the genius and very gorgeous Japanese male who cuts my hair (when I can afford it), and who occupies my shopping street of now ‘going out of business’ businesses, owing to the FAKE pandemic.

    I cannot even begin to describe the PHYSICAL presence of this person…Mifune would pale by comparison…

    My haircutter is a devotee of Donald J. Trump and the American conservative movement. Robin, he would like to know, how he can prevent his son from being M-f’d in the Japanese system, which he understands to be ‘gro-ba-ru’…please advise.

    Also, he assures me, HAIRCUTTER’S INTUITION, that the American people are not so stupid that they will ‘vote’ for the party of that demented, ‘sanpaku’ AOC…who, owing to her manga-character-like-likeness is a BIG presence in Japan.

    Please, Robin, answer this “gro-ba-ru” call for advice.

    • Still a bit too busy to answer but this came out yesterday with this quote

      LPI President and CEO Linda Darling-Hammond, who co-authored the framework, said in a statement that the pandemic could be “a historic opportunity” for education leaders “to reinvent an antiquated and deeply inequitable system” and adopt “an entirely different approach — one that champions equity, authentic learning, and stronger relationships among educators, children, and families.”


      The pandemic has disrupted learning for an entire generation of students, from preschool through college,” Darling-Hammond said in a statement provided to Education Dive. “We cannot return to business-as-usual, and in some ways, this is a good thing.”

      The country’s education system has been deeply unequal and erratic in delivering on the promise a quality education for all students, she added.

      During the coronavirus shutdowns, some districts implemented project-based learning which has been assessed through feedback in many places. Darling-Hammond said performance-based assessment could “sharpen critical thinking and communication skills” and better give students skills they need for success in college or the workforce. It’s about connecting lessons to application in the real world.

      Remote learning prompted some teachers to turn to project-based learning and encourage their students to get creative in their projects by using items found around the home. The switch also prompted many educators to turn to a feedback-based assessment system to measure progress. Some expect the trend to continue long after the pandemic threat fades and students return to their classrooms.

      • Well, yesterday, my version of HELL on earth was realized. I spoke to a number of clients in the region, which is ASIA — these are HR folks who tell me that despite the regional economic collapse they are being tasked with creating greater EQUITY in their hiring and retention practices.

        A puzzled individual in Tokyo stated that the only ‘minority’ on the team in Japan was a ‘white’ person, and she wasn’t sure if this person was a ‘minority’, though she had no doubt that HE was very LONELY. Ditto for other regions, where the minority staffing demographic may not align with oppression agendas in the U.S.

        I have dealt with this insanity for years, but now it is on steroids.

        • You’ll appreciate this then on Asian Americans as the ‘model minority’.

          Had multiple webinars yesterday and racial equity was the focus in several and the need to be ‘anti-racist’. It is Fascism in terms of a now required belief system where actual facts must not be allowed to intervene.

          My alma mater is requiring anti-racism instruction now for ALL students. They are very pleased with themselves too. It’s the excuse for the MH society and part of the shift to the collective must be at the psychological level.

          We are going to talk about this shift in earnest when I get back to writing. Still catching my breath this week after 15 months of running a marathon at a sprint pace.

        • I’ve heard there is a BLM push into Japan in particular. Certainly not China; I doubt BLM would get any traction there.

          • Yes, David, that is correct on Japan. This is ironic because the government is simultaneously discriminating against foreign residents in terms of our ability to leave the country and return. There are a number of long-term expats living here, married to Japanese, with children. As it stands, their Japanese family members may travel — on business, holidays, but they cannot.

            But, BLM.

          • had a podcast yesterday with activist athletes. Notice the references to both ‘collective future’ and ‘true belonging’. This is about using race and tragedies to force the little ‘c’ MH communism template throughout the world.

            About the series: A Black-led movement demanding police accountability and justice has galvanized anger, grief, and frustration over the repeated killings of Black men and women both historically and in the present day—but also hope for a future rooted in true belonging. People worldwide are participating in a pivotal uprising that will reshape not only our relationship with Black communities, but also our collective future. This livestream series, “Rise Up For Justice: Black Lives and Our Collective Future,” from the Othering & Belonging Institute at UC Berkeley, is providing space for cutting edge conversations among activists, scholars, journalists, and other thought leaders to provide context and analysis on this transformative moment and envision what comes next in the movement for racial justice. Launched in June 2020 in response to the murder of George Floyd. We held our first event on June 8.

            It also fits with what I heard from Angela Glover Blackwell of PolicyLink in an Aspen webinar earlier this week.

          • And we also have this on pushing the Happiness Curriculum all over the globe.

            Systems and schools worldwide are implementing programs that take a holistic approach to student learning and development; the HC introduced by the Delhi Government is one such approach. Such programs are implemented in countries and districts which vary in educational outcomes. For example, the shift away from knowledge-based to competency-based education is taking place in the Republic of Korea, notedfor its high academic performance in international large-scale assessments in recent years. Similar interest is indicated in Indonesia’s decision to include measures of character in the national assessment system, notwithstanding its lesser success in international large-scale assessments. Each of these countries approaches the issue differently but with a common goal—the betterment of outcomesfor the individual and society.When educational systems identify systemic issues, as has been the case in Delhi and elsewhere, they are duty-bound to implement reasonable strategies to remedy deficiencies. They do not, however, have the luxury of running high-quality randomizedtrials to check on efficacy, due both to the considerable time needed to conduct these and to the ethical issues involved in providing some but not all constituents with the intervention.

            No wonder I found Tranzi OBE all over the world when I was writing CtD.

          • Funny how what is culturally relevant for these turbulent times always takes us back to what can be relied on to alter students at a neurobiological level.

            I am adding this doozy of a quote from the Foreword to that Guidebook.

            We’re currently battling two viruses in America. COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc on our daily lives, our children’s education, and how we define normal. But we have also been living with another insidious virus, one that began more than 400 years ago when enslaved Africans were first sold to American colonists in 1619. Though we no longer practice slavery, this virus has permeated our minds, attitudes, systems, and structures causing systemic oppression and ongoing racial injustice. It has deeply seeded our biases, the design of our education system, and how we view the students we serve. As a result, this virus has profound effects on how our children develop their identity and sense of agency as human beings.This project brought together people and organizations with experience and expertise in enacting change. We have an opportunity in this time of crisis to change the mental model we have of learners and what education is, so that we can evolve ourselves and our institutions to raise youth that know themselves and the awesome impact they can have on the world.

            It’s not the effect. It’s the purpose of this template.

            Ties in with what mindfulness training is known to do.

  27. Thinking about the calculated drift to collectivism and root of this blog, Invisible Serfs Collar, I bring forward this article from the UK about the “hell” of slavery everywhere

    This is the comment I made to someone who kindly forwarded this article to me: This article is worth reading in its entirety. There are two kinds of slavery — of the physical body and of the mind. Articles from UnHerd usually remind us that slavishly adhering to mob mentality shows that we are not of free minds, but part of a herd. I am grateful for thoughtful articles such as this and for the people who take the time to pass them along for our attention.

    I thank ISC and commentators for highlighting what a delicate matter is freedom.

    • I think we all need to take a look at this and understand the implications of statements like these.

      DeLeon began by grounding the conversation in historical context. “As we focus on belonging in schooling,” he said, “we have to center race in the conversation, because in every way, the strivings of historically marginalized populations in this country have been about belonging in society. Schools have the opportunity to replicate societal injustices or to change the world from the inside out.”

      While belonging is a universal human need, it can only be achieved with attention to this historical context and the positioning of different people and groups in relation to structural barriers and opportunities. DeLeon went on to describe research on how school leaders can build an infrastructure for interpersonal, instructional, and institutional opportunities to belong. Sasha Rabkin, Chief Strategy Officer of Equal Opportunity Schools (EOS), discussed how this research has informed his organization’s process for assessing the cues, experiences, and conditions related to student belonging in a learning environment.

      “This is a time to hold up a mirror to our systems and not a microscope to our young people,” Sasha said. Based on student survey and focus group data, EOS identified five elements that are present in environments worth belonging to, and that correlate with students’ sense of belonging, which is associated with their academic outcomes. These five elements are culturally relevant curriculum; culturally relevant teaching; classroom community; high expectations, feedback, and growth-oriented assessment; and conversations about race.

      …Gisele Shorter identified “an open question with significant potential implications for research. […] Will we continue to center on WEIRD [Western, educated, industrialized, rich and democratic] populations, perspectives, and meaning-making as the base map on which we advance the work?” She and other speakers noted that WEIRD and Eurocentric norms across sectors can skew our measurement, analysis of root causes, and proposed solutions related to belonging.

      For funders, challenging these norms can take the form of deep partnership with grantees, in ways that preserve the grantee’s autonomy, allow for flexibility, and foster mutual learning. For education system leaders, challenging these norms can mean using measures of belonging that are tailored to the local context and that reach beyond traditional metrics (e.g. augmenting survey data with qualitative and observational data).

      Both of these examples are rooted in trusting relationships with the organizations and people closest to the work. At all levels, we heard that students must be elevated as co-creators and innovators as we work toward a new system that serves every young person.

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