Students

Statistical Racism in education?

You have to hand it to shifty educators who go out of their way to fiddle the books in order to create a narrative that isn’t borne out by the actual statistics. What are we on about?

In a Washington school district, the educators measured the performance of white students vs students of colour (SOC).

Unfortunately due to the scholastic excellence of Asian students, it was felt they inconveniently skewed the SOC numbers to such an extent that they decided to clump them with white students to run the racial inequity line.

Once the bias was caught out, the report was taken down. This is what the data actually said:

In Math, Asian and multi-ethnic students fare the best at 53% growth. American Indian students showed the next highest growth at 52%, followed by Hispanic/Latino at 49%. Both White and Black/African American students came in at 48%. 

When you look at English Language Arts, you see similar results, only with white students slightly outperforming Black student growth (48% to 47%), and Hispanic students (44%) falling slightly behind whites. Again, Asian (54%), multi-ethnic (48%), and American Indian (48%) students outperformed or performed equally well as white students in growth.

In short these social justice educators had no qualms overstating the reality of white students as long as they could widen the gap for political purposes.

It reminds us of 13 schools in Baltimore – four of which received the highest per capita spending per student in the country – returning ZERO PERCENT maths proficiency. Perhaps the education professionals might reflect on the fact that the problem might be with their methods. Throwing money at the problem isn’t the solution.

Imagine if they stopped wasting time trying to ram socialist ideology down students’ throats. Instead of massaging data in order to blame poor outcomes on systemic racism, maybe teachers could be financially compensated based on lifting the performance of all students. Make annual tests graded by independent markers a prerequisite to incentivize excellence among teachers.

Maybe the teachers need to face the fact that they are failing their students. Perhaps they can cancel mandatory racism training for white teachers with superior teaching methods.

AOC is living proof that even socialists embrace capitalism.

Harvard students circulate petition to ban Trump supporters from campus

A group of Harvard University students are pushing a petition which seeks to out anyone associated with President Trump by blacklisting them from “teaching, speaking, or attending the institution.”

Surely the whole point of attending a university of such standing is to use the superior intelligence, intellect and facts gained to guarantee that on the strength of the arguments alone, these Trump supporters wouldn’t dare come for fear of the abject humiliation that would follow.

Instead, these snowflakes want to shut down debate for fear they might have to listen to someone with different opinions. These poor trust fund babies. Who could forget this Harvard graduate who threatened to stab anyone who said All Lives Matter?

Didn’t Joe Biden call for Americans to “unite”? Maybe when Harvard alumni and former FLOTUS Michelle Obama said 75 million Trump supporters backed “lies, hate, chaos and division” she wasn’t helping heal that rift.

As we said this morning, education is increasingly looking like it should be free as it is seemingly worth little. Why learn when indoctrination is so much simpler?

At the very least, The Harvard Crimson, the student-run paper, blasted the policy as “paternalistic, ineffective, and contrary to the College’s stated goals of free speech.

LA Teachers’ Union school reopening demands have nothing to do with COVID-19

Who knew? One might logically think that the main reason to keep schools closed would be to mitigate the risk of a secondary outbreak of COVID-19 even though there is no evidence that kids are super-spreaders. Over 40 countries around the world have kids back at school with no mass outbreaks reported. Australia is a case in point.

The LA teacher’s union (UTLA), a part of the LA United Schools District (LAUSD) has published a report titled, ‘The Same Storm, but Different Boats: The Safe and Equitable Conditions for Starting LAUSD in 2020-21

In order to ‘safely’ reopen, it says the following demands must be met:

  1. Defund the police
  2. End chartered schools,
  3. Wealth tax on billionaires
  4. Millionaire tax,
  5. More paid sick leave,
  6. Abolition of ICE,
  7. Supporting illegal immigrants financially,
  8. Medicare for all and
  9. and an additional $250 million to reopen schools.

Naturally, UTLA President Cecily Myart-Cruz pushed back saying it was just right-wing propaganda.

Note Myart-Cruz is the Chair of the CTA Civil Rights Committee, Chair of the NEA Black Caucus and member of Black Lives Matter Los Angeles. No bias there.

One can only imagine what kids in her care are being indoctrinated with.

Why wasn’t COVID-19 the focus of reopening? Why hasn’t the UTLA talked about the 30% of kids that haven’t logged in for distance learning once? Presumably money is the cure? Forget that kids are merely pawns in the UTLA’s sinister goals.

Don’t despair, Myart-Cruz said the following in a press release,

The astronomical amount of money that billionaires, charter school chains, and corporations have received during this crisis in comparison to the support given to healthcare and low-income communities is unconscionable and contributes to the skyrocketing infection rates…During the uprisings we have seen police in militarized gear while hospital workers beg for life-saving personal protective gear. The money is there for safer communities, but it is going to the wrong places. We cannot open school buildings during this crisis without the adequate support that our educators, students and communities we serve need.”

Forget finding a cure. Just hold kids to ransom. Keep them in perpetual poverty. Complain it is all to do with systemic racism and oppression.

Although there is a sense of irony to bash billionaires, many of the left in a city and state which are Democrat-controlled.

0% math proficiency in 13 Baltimore high schools

It has become apparent that maths proficiency across 13 city run schools in Baltimore, Maryland is ZERO. Nada. Zilch. This is up from 6 schools in 2016.

One might assume that it is a lack of investment. Not so.

According to the Census Bureau, this is the seventh consecutive year the state of Maryland has had four public school districts rank in the top 10 of per pupil spending.

So for all of the destruction of monuments and painting of Black Lives Matter on many street corners, perhaps one might question improving this metric will have a much bigger impact than virtue signaling.

Baltimore has had a Democrat mayor since 1967. Or with the exception of 1963-67 when it went Republican, Democrats have been in charge for the last 80 years.

Have black students demanded this?

A petition started by students at the University of Washington – which demands faculty staff mark black students more leniently – has gathered 26,000 signatures. Worse, the university believes it’s a good idea.

Nicole McNichols, UW Psychology Professor said, “Obviously, I support the petition and absolutely believe the accommodations it requests should be honored by all faculty. Students need all of the support and compassion we can afford to give them right now.”

What about Hispanic students? Don’t other minorities have a claim for leniency too? What about black trans students with disabilities? Should they get more marks?

If the students that signed up to the petition truly want to make it fair, perhaps the white students should agree to be marked down with a white privilege adjustment to atone for the sins of those they aren’t related to who may have committed crimes before they were born.

Ultimately, if these liberally minded students truly wish to stop discrimination, why demand a policy that actively encourages it? If they wish to stop systemic racism how does such segregationist policies help?

In closing, how many black students have demanded this? Were many consulted? We wouldn’t be surprised if many black students get frustrated at the basic tenet that these white liberal kids think without an artificial boost they can’t succeed on their own merits. That is about as condescending as it gets!

This is the perfect argument for why universities should be free. Absolutely no lessons about real life are being taught.

Rant over.

The Victim?

This is a picture of 88-yo May Boyce who was arrested for aggravated assault after shooting a man who tried to rob her liquor store. Her gun was confiscated by police.

Boyce has owned Murfreesboro Road Liquor and Wines in Nashville, Tennessee, since 1994. She opens and closes the store six days a week by herself.

Boyce claimed the victim, identified as Ramon Fisher, “lunged” at her after picking up a bottle and started to head for the exit.

Fisher originally confessed to police that he and his friend had intended to steal from the store, but later amended the story and said they intended to pay for it. Presumably they intended to pay for it after Fisher was shot.

Interesting how the police call Fisher the “victim.” Imagine if he just paid for it like a normal customer then he wouldn’t be nursing a bullet hole. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

Oh, and you’ll never guess what party the mayor of Nashville, who runs the police, is from. Democrat.

Should the 88-yo be given a life sentence or a medal for defending her business because two thugs thought she would be too frail to possess a Smith & Wesson snub nose .38 let alone fire it?

You’ll never guess who the BLM fundraising arm has as its vice-chair…

As the kneeling for Black Lives Matter continues at sporting events across the globe, why not let one of the BLM founders, Alicia Garza, enrich our understanding of the Marxist group some more.  Garza has repeatedly talked about how convicted cop killer and wanted domestic terrorist Joanne Chesimard, aka Assata Shakur, is one of her main inspirations. Shakur assassinated a New Jersey state trooper and now lives in exile in Cuba. She was also involved in bombings and several executions of cops in New Jersey, New York and San Francisco.

It gets worse.

Susan Rosenberg, the vice-chair for the left-wing Thousand Currents group, which handles the administration of the donations made to Black Lives Matter, is a convicted terrorist who was sentenced to 58 years for weapons and explosives charges while a member of the May 19th Communist Organization. She spent 16 years in prison before President Bill Clinton commuted her sentence on his last day. Among other things, Rosenberg was suspected of helping Shakur escape from prison in 1979.

Why does the mainstream media keep portraying the BLM organization as a clean, wholesome and noble organization with good intentions when it has such reprehensible beliefs and practices utter hypocrisy when it comes to ALL black lives?

Education could change forever

College

This piece isn’t so much about Trump’s plan to do the above, but a precursor to where education is probably likely to head. Going forward, skills will be more prized than some kid with a liberal arts degree in Marxist philosophy.

The education sector needs to take a long hard look at the changes heading for it.

The declining standards in education are one thing. They are morphing into ever more political campuses, encouraged by the universities themselves. Here are 10 examples.

  1. A Cambridge professor tweeted “whites they don’t matter.
  2. A Stanford law professor testified during the impeachment hearings that she crosses the road when she sees a Trump building.
  3. The University of Texas ran a MasculinUT program built around “restrictive masculinity” and tries to encourage men to drop traditional gender roles.
  4. Yale University’s Chaplain’s Office believes a $70,000pa education requires a bouncy castle and/or cookies & colouring to reduce anxiety for students.
  5. University of Manchester’s student union voted to say “applause” is not inclusive and can distress people.
  6. Cambridge University union students deemed Remembrance Day as something that glorifies war, not about respecting the dead and those who served.
  7. UTS thinks that lowering the ATAR requirements to get more girls into STEM fields makes sense.  
  8. Academia signed this open letter supporting the Extinction Rebellion which highlighted how poor the vetting processes were in trying to appear woke. The stats spoke volumes.
  9. Prof Peter Ridd won his court case for unfair dismissal against James Cook University for his challenging of the orthodoxy about the deterioration of the Great Barrier Reef.
  10. Sydney University students were being marked down by certain lecturers if students used language such as ‘mankind’, ‘workmanship’ or similar words in assignment work.

We could go on.

These much-prized institutions are hardly making a strong case for the fees they charge. We whole-heartedly agree with Bernie Sanders that education should be free. In our view if and only if this is the standard of the faculty staff. It is increasingly looking worthless against the exorbitant fees charged.

Australia makes a great case in point. It bet the farm on the surging ranks of foreign (especially Chinese) students paying exorbitant fees to get degrees from our tertiary institutions. So many thought the gravy train would never end that they expanded facilities and never made contingency plans for an exogenous shock – like coronavirus.

Downsizing of universities is inevitable. Good professors will be bid away to schools that can afford them. Many surplus-to-requirements faculty staff will be axed. With that morale will sink and internal finger-pointing will exacerbate the problem and standards will slip further.

The future of education may end up ditching $100,000s in student loans to an education business model which allows students to pick the academics they want in the fields they are interested in. We recall the MBA course taken 17 years ago. We were forced to pay $1,000s of dollars to take a course in basic economics, a subject we took 4 years to complete with distinction to attain a B Ec.

We are reminded post-GFC at the number of financial industry professionals who took up a CFA degree with the hopes of attaining a $200,000+ annual salary. Sadly, 85% of the job offers for people with that qualification were for $90,000 or less. Makes sense. Software sophistication is such that a lot of degrees have less value because AI can replace it.

Interesting that Aussie universities are planning to charge double for less useful degrees in liberal arts and less for traditional fields in economics, medicine or law. i.e. discouraging degrees that add little value in the real world.

The new model may end up looking like an educational supermarket. Someone who wants to get into marketing might want to take a course run by Prof. Michael Porter from Harvard University or someone in marine ecology could look to learn a course conducted by Prof Peter Ridd.

All we can say is that education in twenty years won’t look anything like today. Skills matter. Old systems run by faculties that push ideology over education will end up shooting themselves in the foot. The finance market has already moved to a new model where clients pay for “value” of the analyst, not the “firm”. Bring it on.

Demanding segregation at a university which scores high on diversity

us-news-2020-engineering.jpg | Rice Engineering | Rice University

Rice University (RU) administrators are being asked to establish a racially segregated non-residential Black House specifically made for Black students and Black organizations to congregate and hold events as a way to overcome “systemic oppression and inequity.” Only Black students would have access to this building.

The group has also demanded:

  • the removal of a statue William Marsh Rice, which the university was named after because he was a slave owner.
  • comprehensive decolonization of the curriculum with mandatory lessons for all students on systemic racial inequity that is built into our global and local society and how it affects Black people today.
  • an increase in Black chefs, tenured professors, as well as other members of the Rice community. Representation plays a key role in increasing the well-being of Black students on campus.
  • That RU cuts ties with Houston PD and decrease RUPD presence on campus
    with the goal of complete abolition. i.e. defund the police.
  • to allow black students to select their roommates based on race.
  • Other demands are included in this link.

We were a bit surprised that these race activists couldn’t spell “Ku Klux Klan” properly (at the bottom of page 2).

The two most interesting statements were:

  • This list is neither comprehensive nor does it speak for all Black students as a single, unified group…Neither did we collect names of Black students who gave suggestions, nor did we list the names of those we are aware of who “adamantly support” some of these items.

If they wish to make such demands, surely a plurality of black students would make a stronger case for those changes to be accommodated or at the very least considered (which RU is already doing). With little data to work with to gauge the extent of the problem, should RU blindly make investments based purely on identity which would undoubtedly come at the expense of some other areas which were benefitting the majority of students?

  • “This list is not littered with quantitative data or studies of peer institutions. Rather, we decided to use this moment in history to give a social statement.

Since the students freely admit that they haven’t done the homework, we decided to do it for them. Luckily for RU, they are well ahead of the pack and have grounds for congratulation, not censure.

First, College Factual (CF) notes that RU scores well above average for diversity in gender, ethnicity and geographic location. CF ranks RU a Top 5% university for diversity.

Diversity

Second, the enrolled student population at Rice University is as follows. Whites are the largest cohort but not the majority:

Undergrad

Third, the faculty staff at Rice University is as follows:

faculty

In short, white faculty staff are the majority but lower than their population cohort. Compare this to around 80% in high schools in America.

According to the 2017 data, in terms of graduation rates at RU, black females complete their degrees (95.3% vs 88.9% in 2012) at a higher level than whites (94% vs 92.1% in 2012). Hispanic women have a graduation rate of 97% (vs 94.5% in 2012) and Asian women 98.9% (vs 97.9% in 2012). Native Americans had a 100% pass rate. No evidence of racial profiling by teachers.

For men in 2017, in terms of graduation rates at RU, black males complete their degrees (76.9% vs 84.2% in 2012) at a lower level than whites (89.8% vs 90.4% in 2012). Hispanic men have a graduation rate of 86.7% (vs 90.9% in 2012) and Asian men 91.8% (vs 95.7% in 2012). Why have men across all cohorts seen a lower level of pass rates?

There is little evidence that systemic racism is working against students of colour. If the students are triggered by the university’s history, removing a statue won’t change the fact that it was founded by a slave owner. No doubt these students picked RU for its curriculum and the opportunities that will flow from that, which clearly in their minds supersede its past to study there.

In summary, it is concerning to see more of this tribalism be pushed in society, especially when the evidence is so inconclusive.  The biggest lesson these kids need to learn that merit, hard work and learning from history are far more important skillsets in the real world than lodging complaints that the equal treatment the institution appears to be showing is somehow discriminatory and that only special treatment will fix it.

Cambridge Professor wants to abolish whiteness

It used to be a source of pride to say one graduated from Cambridge University.

Cambridge University’s Churchill College Professor Priyamvada Gopal’s used Twitter to say “White Lives Don’t Matter” and “abolish whiteness.

Gopal’s areas of study include gender and feminism, Marxism, critical race studies, and the politics and cultures of empire and globalization.

How does the dean tolerate the divisive radical professor?

We don’t have a problem with her free speech because her words speak for themselves. We question why the university tolerates faculty staff who bring the reputation of a prized tertiary institution into disrepute?

Even worse, she doubled down

One thing about white racists, the ones who are emailing & tweeting about my losing my job. It REALLY gets up their nose that Cambridge–which they see as theirs, their Properly White Institution–has me in its teaching ranks. Deeply triggering.

No, they care about the legacy of the institution. The university should seek to protect it regardless of the identity of the individual who made such thoughtless comments.

We shouldn’t be surprised at the deterioration in education standards. Who could forget the Stanford law professor, Pamela Karlan, who said during her testimony at the impeachment hearings that she crossed the street so she didn’t have to walk in front of Trump buildings.

When the left demand free education, we finally understand. If this is the standard, why drop a fortune on something that increasingly has no value?

Cambridge University’s reaction will be telling.