12 June 2006 - Monday
Fortunately, David Davisson managed to do what I could not when I tried: he tracked down the text of the Florida education bill mentioned here. The fact-checking was badly needed, as Davisson discovered:
It turns out that Zimmerman's characterization of the new Florida law is somewhat misleading. The actual law, as signed by Jeb Bush says this -- "American history shall be viewed as factual, not as constructed, shall be viewed as knowable, teachable and testable, and shall be defined as the creation of a new nation based largely on the universal principles stated in the Declaration of Independence." The "revisionist or postmodernist" line was dropped before the bill reached Bush's desk.The "as factual, not as constructed" phrase is still meaningless at best. But the rest of it could be worse. If I could, I would change "defined as" to "defined by" for the sake of accuracy and flexibility.
In fact, I'll quote more than that from the bill:
Members of the instructional staff of the public schools, subject to the rules of the State Board of Education and the district school board, shall teach efficiently and faithfully, using the books and materials required that meet the highest standards for professionalism and historic accuracy, following the prescribed courses of study, and employing approved methods of instruction, the following:| Posted by Wilson at 13:03 Central | TrackBack
The history of the United States, including the period of discovery, early colonies, the War for Independence, the Civil War, the expansion of the United States to its present boundaries, the world wars, and the civil rights movement to the present. American history shall be viewed as factual, not as constructed, shall be viewed as knowable, teachable, and testable, and shall be defined as the creation of a new nation based largely on the universal principles stated in the Declaration of Independence.
| Report submitted to the Education Desk