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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

What are the Proper Things to be taught?

I read a response to an article on Bill 44 wherein the writer said that Bill 44 was needed because the proper things were not being taught. What are the proper things? In my mind, those things are the Alberta Curriculum. That IS what is being taught. This curriculum has been developed with input from many educators, industry input, and legislators, many of whom are parents so one could that parents have had an opportunity for input. It is designed to be culturally neutral. What Bill 44 will do is hamper teachers form being humans with personal viewpoints. Sure, they should not be teaching their opinion, however, often in classes you take a position to stimulate discussion. Sometimes it is your own, sometimes not. I worked with a Social Studies teacher who only had one student guess his political affiliation correctly over the course of 20+ years of teaching. He was very good at teaching 'everything' without bias or slant. Not everyone is that good and it is an unreasonable expectation. The important is that kids are able to see that different points of view and opinions exist. Parents always cry out to teachers to involve students so that they engage in the learning. What Bill 44 will do is produce such a neutral delivery that no one will be involved. Teachers, good teachers, will quit and go elsewhere because it will be impossible to work in an environment where they are not allowed to be human.

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