By Sean and Mary Kay Alix
Tuesday, May 16 is yet another appeal for money from the tax payers for the Weiser School District levy. Currently per student expenditure is $7,585.00, achieving a statewide proficiency in 8th grade math and reading of only 37%. Yet even more sobering than poor academic rating is what is being taught in the Weiser School District. Social Emotional Learning (SEL) concepts are used in Pioneer School, Park School, Weiser Middle School and Weiser High School. What is SEL? “Social-Emotional Learning (SEL; sometimes “Social and Emotional Learning”) is a program of instruction for non-academic educational “competencies” in the social and emotional spheres. In virtually all cases, SEL is billed as a means of educating “the whole child” rather than just his academic parts. It Is practicing group psychology on children without a license where they are being given the right answer by people who are badly informed with Marxist Social theories.” (James Lindsay, New Discources).
Here is a description of the Second Step Program:
(Park School uses elements found in the Second Steps curriculum, Zones of Regulation)
“The Second Step Program, used in at least 21% of Idaho school districts, is a quintessential example of using SEL as a vehicle for critical social justice. For example, eighth grade lessons 2 and 8-13 are labeled (“bullying” but actually discuss power and privilege. They assert “sometimes people experience privilege based on race and gender” and lists “power and privilege” as a reason for bullying. White students are almost exclusively portrayed as the aggressor in these lessons. Second Step encourages students to question their sexual orientation and gender, be activists for issues such as transgenderism, and use the website LoveIsRespect.org for sex advice. The website includes resources such as “Five tips for your first time,” refers places to get an abortion, and promotes sexual taboos like polyamory.
For example, in the Second Step 8th Grade Unit 1 Lesson 6, students are instructed to make an identity map 10 years in the future illustrating their intersectional identities (e.g. race, gender, religion, roles) Students are instructed to circle what identity traits have changed and what stayed the same. Gender is listed as part of a student identity that can change.
The Second Step SEL program was also adopted in Loudoun County schools, where parents were forced to sign a NDA-style form in order to review the curriculum. As American scholar and Critical Race Theory critic James Lindsay has explained, “These programs mirror the educational programs put in place by Mao in China during the Cultural Revolution and are wholly damaging to children. They’ve also adopted Marxian themes and methods, hence ‘transformative,’ and are used to groom children into Marxian views on sexuality and also Critical Race Theory.”
If that sounds confusing and disturbing, you are not alone. What happened to the fundamentals for life-reading, writing and arithmetic? Children should study accurate American History and the US Constitution and basic economics, namely good stewardship of money. Vote no, and allow families to keep more of their hard earned money rather than the continual funding of more failing government buildings and programs.