A Calendar of Indoctrination
At the NEA convention, teachers were given colorful 2015-16 school calendars created by the union’s Read Across America Campaign. The calendar is titled “Read, Discover, Explore” and it claims to celebrate “a nation of diverse readers.” One unfortunate but critically diverse characteristic that exists among students is that while some students can read, some can’t. What is the NEA doing to right this crippling wrong that harms so many students? Is the union encouraging a strong, phonics-based, proven-effective reading program for all students? No. Instead, the NEA’s goal is that of left-wing extremists, aimed at dividing even the youngest Americans into subgroups according to race, heritage, sex, sexual identity, disabilities, and ideology.
The NEA Read Across America calendar’s message to teachers says, “Our students need to see themselves in the books they read.” While the priority should be that students know how to read, literacy is not what this calendar is about. The calendar is simply one more tool in the union’s social-justice toolbox.
A calendar suggestion for September is that students write and illustrate stories from “their own culture,” completely missing the point that American students’ culture is American and it is advantageous for them to assimilate.
December’s book is A Boy and A Jaguar, about efforts to protect big cats around the world and condemning evil humans who kill animals.
In June, the NEA calendar celebrates Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. The featured book is Not Every Princess, published by the American Psychological Association, which includes “strategies to help children imagine, play, and envision themselves beyond the limited roles and expectations that gender stereotypes create.” The calendar suggests parents and teachers “check out” the “Rainbow booklist,” an annual bibliography of “quality books with significant and authentic Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning content, which are recommended for people from birth through eighteen years of age.” Rainbow Books is a joint project of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table and the Social Responsibilities Round Table of the American Library Association, and others.
The NEA calendar recommends other resources, such as DiverseBooks.org, TeachingTolerance.org, ColorínColorado.org, the Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English, the American Indians in Children’s Literature Blog, and the Diversity in Young Adult books website, that lists books about race, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
February is Black History Month and the National African American Read-In. September is Hispanic Heritage Month. October is Bullying Prevention Month. December is Universal Human Rights month.
The United Nations International Youth Day is indicated on the NEA calendar, but Christmas is not. The 2015 UN Youth Day theme is for children to “engage politically, economically, and socially,” in a manner that “encourage[s] sustainable human development.” The NEA calendar will help teachers and students to remember that César Chávez Day is March 31 and on Sept. 27, Banned Books Week begins.