N.Y. High School Teacher Hands Out Cartoon Likening Police to KKK

A high school teacher in Westchester County, New York, passed out a political cartoon to students that compared police to the KKK, the New York Post reported. Westlake High School teacher Christopher Moreno passed out a five-paneled political cartoon depicting slave traders and owners, the KKK, and police officers kneeling on the necks of black people to his 11th-grade U.S. History and Government class on Sept. 8. The cartoon was attached to an assignment about the goals and purposes of the Black Lives Matter movement. Recent Stories in Culture The cartoon passed out by teacher Christopher Moreno Student Nicole Paternostro told the Post she thought Moreno’s lesson plan was overtly biased against police and called the cartoon "disgusting." "The cartoon was disgusting. It compared the police with all the terrible people in history," Paternostro said. "It was not fair. It wasn’t right." Paternostro’s mother, Ania, sent a letter to the school district's administration and called the lesson "brainwashing." "We don't need a teacher brainwashing my kids," Ania Paternostro told the Post. "I'll teach my kids about what's right and what's wrong." Mount Pleasant School District superintendent Kurt Kotes told parents he would investigate the matter. A summer of racial justice and anti-police protests has heightened debates over the approach to teaching race and history in America’s classrooms. In August, one Illinois state congressman called on the state to halt all history instruction until experts could create a new, racially conscious curriculum. Meanwhile, a national dispute continues over the implementation of the New York Times’s controversial 1619 Project in classrooms: While the Pulitzer Center has distributed curriculum based on the reporting to thousands of schools, many scholars contest the accuracy of the story—which led President Donald Trump to threaten to cut federal funding to schools that use the 1619 Project in their curriculum.

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Science? It’s the Election, Stupid

Please respect our republishing guidelines - Click Here Los Angeles County Health Director Barbara Ferrer has come under fire for recent audio leaked to LA radio station KFI AM 60 in which she asserts that schools will likely not open up again until after the Presidential election on November 3. Her remarks have drawn criticism that Ferrer is leaning on politics rather than science in making her determination. In a moment of unguarded honesty while on a conference call, Ferrer opined that: “We don’t realistically anticipate that we would be moving to either tier 2 or to reopening K-12 schools at least until after the election in early November.” Conspiracy Theory or Calculated Political Move? On its face, this seems to reinforce the right-wing “conspiracy theory” that everything is about the election at present and may be used for political advantage – even our children’s education. Unfortunate statements like Ferrer’s reinforce the idea that intransigence on opening businesses, restaurants, churches, and public schools may have a calculated political component. Over the summer, President Trump, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, and the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) all endorsed American children going back to school in the Fall – a notion against which the teacher’s unions of California swiftly pushed back. Within a day or so, the unions voted to continue school closures in favor of remote learning. This decision flew in the face of all science on the subject. We know that there is not a single recorded case of a student infecting a teacher with COVID-19 anywhere in the world – even though students went back to school many months ago in Denmark, Norway, and Germany as well as nine other countries. The determination to bar students from in-person learning was also made with full knowledge that the seasonal flu is far more deadly than COVID for children. Internationally children have barely registered as infected or in any way sickened by the virus during the pandemic. For a group that genuflects to science, the left deliberately ignored science when it was politically convenient for them to do so. This also includes the comprehensive adoption of masks, which has devolved into self-reinforcing fascism requiring everyone to wear them outside the home – available science be damned. And the science on whether unprecedented quarantines of healthy people have worked to slow the spread of COVID-19 is still in dispute, but history suggests the evidence does not favor supporting arguments. None of that science appeared to register with a county professional for whom science is in the mission directive of her job. Ferrer was also overheard to say on the same conference call that: “When we just look at the timing of everything, it seems to us a more realistic approach to this would be to think that we’re going to be where we are now until we are done with the election.” Holding the Nation Hostage The social media critiques of Ferrer’s tacit admission that politics was privileged over science in deciding to keep schools closed were fast and furious. Outraged Twitter commenters called her remarks “disgusting” and “criminal” and evidence that we are being “held hostage” by a politically-motivated ruling class. Some wondered why Halloween, for example, might not have made just as convenient a watershed date for the reopening of schools – another trenchant observation that suggests politics at the heart of Ferrer’s remarks. Meanwhile, the LA County Department of Health was under the gun to clarify Ferrer’s statements, asserting that she was really only referring to the “time frame for expanded school re-openings.” Anytime the government body that has aegis over you has to run interference for your remarks, you know full well you stepped in it, and a hose is being applied to your shoes. LA Unified School District is the second-largest in the country behind New York City’s Board of Education. Seven hundred thirty-five thousand students in LA County are now nearly a month into distance learning – a bad dream from which we had hoped to awaken this Fall after a Spring rife with lockdown-learning. LA has at least made tentative plans to allow its most severely impacted special education students to revisit in-person learning, starting this week. But after LA County canceled Halloween trick-or-treating after having supported protests, then walked back the decision a day later, and given Barbara Ferrer’s apparently political metric – should Southern Californians have any confidence their elected officials know what they’re doing and are making science-based decisions free of political bias? ~ Read more from Pennel Bird.

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LA Schools: Politics Over Students?

Please respect our republishing guidelines - Click Here Should students return to school or be kept at home with online learning? Has the Coronavirus pandemic run its course enough to allow children to return to student-teacher in-person learning? That has been the question dominating educational systems throughout the nation. While some schools have returned to a semblance of normality, others have remained locked down, with concerns about spreading the virus preventing their reopening. Or is that the real story? In Los Angeles, CA, the public health chief may be suggesting another agenda – a political one – as she warns the county’s schools will likely not resume until after the presidential election. Dr. Barbara Ferrer, in a conference call with educators, twice mentioned keeping schools closed until after the election. “We don’t realistically anticipate that we would be moving to either tier 2 or to reopening K-12 schools at least until after the election, in early November,” she said, drawing criticism for the political date. Leaked audio obtained by the L.A. radio station KFI AM 60 reveals the doctor’s comments: “When we just look at the timing of everything, it seems to us a more realistic approach to this would be to think that we’re going to be where we are now until we are done with the election.” Nothing to See Here? The county’s Department of Public Health tried to play down the furor later by saying Ferrer was only referring to the timeframe for “expanded school reopenings,” but that didn’t sway much of the public. One tweeter, known as JP, said: “It’s been about the election the entire time. Anybody who’s been paying attention could see this would be stretched into November solely for that purpose.” Some insist the statement was taken out of context – that Ferrer merely used election day as a benchmark. It is worth noting, though, that everything else in L.A. County is on track to reevaluate reopening and expanding within the next couple of weeks, except for the school system. Ferrer may have meant the beginning of November, but why not say that instead of citing a specific event? After playing Ferrer’s recorded comments, the hosts of KFI News speculated that the timing was a way to thwart President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign: If the students were to return to school now, then it would “give good will to Trump, and more votes.” A commenter identified as Lisa tweeted out this response: “Dr Ferrer told us ‘the science is guiding our decisions’ what does science have to do with the election? We are being held hostage by a Politically motivated shut down. WAKE UP LOS ANGELES.” The L.A. school system has been in the spotlight in recent months for what appears to be politically charged decisions. As Liberty Nation reported, in July, the United Teachers Los Angeles Union (UTLAU) had a list of demands before allowing children to return to class: “Social distancing practices aside, the union folks also want to defund the police, close charter schools, and promote self-serving legislation unrelated to the Coronavirus.” The UTLAU also insisted on funding for illegal immigrants, a wealth tax, and even Medicare for All. As parents struggle to understand the risks (or lack of) to their children should schools reopen, the media continues to bombard the American public with daily updates of infection, hospitalizations, and deaths supposedly due to COVID. Liberty Nation’s Pennel Bird sums up the situation: “We obediently flattened the curve way back in April, and that was just a signal to the media to quickly move the goalposts.” Perhaps the goalposts all along were set for November 4. ~ Read more from Kelli Ballard.

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School assignment equates law enforcement to KKK and slave owners

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