Saturday, February 6, 2010

Dumbing Down History (Again)

Once again, North Carolina's educational system is making national headlines. Thanks to Fox News for alerting us to this year's plan by the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) to remove U.S. history from the course in U.S. history. Under the plan, the required 11th-grade course will now include "U.S. history only from 1877 onward."

Not so fast, says June Atkinson, Superintendent of Public Instruction, who claims the plan increases the amount of history education in the curriculum. "The years prior to reconstruction would have been covered with students three times before - in fourth grade (as part of North Carolina history) in fifth grade and in seventh grade."

However, a closer look at the proposed elementary school curriculum shows what's really going on. The 4th grade class in North Carolina history seems to be transformed into a study of how the North Carolina colonists destroyed the indigenous Native Americans. Fourth graders will now learn to explain the "causes and effects of European exploration and colonization on North Carolina American Indian groups." Fifth graders will learn to "analyze the relationships between European explorers and native peoples."

Things don't get better in middle school. Gone is any mention of the War Between the States in the 7th-grade course in North Carolina history. Instead, our children will learn about "the Indian Removal Act, governmental authority & racial tension during the Wilmington Race Riot of 1898, desegregation during the Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education." [Question for DPI: Are there any historic events worth teaching that don't involve discrimination against minority groups?]

This is the same stunt DPI attempted in 2001, when it plotted to remove the middle school course in North Carolina history, all the while claiming that it was actually increasing North Carolina history education. We didn't fall for it then, and after outraged parents showed up at town hall meetings around the state, the N.C. General Assembly amended the General Statutes to require two full years of North Carolina history education in the public schools.

Since DPI apparently didn't learn its lesson, contact your legislators again and let them know that you oppose this plan. North Carolina has too much history for the public schools to ignore it.


  1. People we better let this bunch of socialistis evil government in NC what we think about their BS!! its time to stand up for the rights of the people!!

  2. This is just another in the ENDLESS efforts at indoctrination of our citizens through our youth. It is time for a massive revolution in this country or we aren't going to have a country, they will. There is an old story about the farmer who had a hard-headed mule. One day, the mule would not respond to the farmers commands so he walked up and hit him over the head with a piece of wood and knocked him to his knees. When asked why he did that, he said that he first had to get his attention. I think it is time that we got some attention and stopped accepting all this CHANGE. My grandfather use to say,"if it ain't broke, it don't need fixing and if it does need fixing, don't break it worse trying to fix it".

  3. Studying the relations between Europeans and Natives certainly is a large part of our nation's (and North Carolina's) beginning. Neglecting ANY of our history is a shame. Substituting this emphasis over the Civil War era or any other substantial part of our Nations history is just foolish. I do; however, disagree with the author's more bias verse here. It seems studying about how "North Carolina colonists destroyed the Native Americans" is a bad thing. Sorry if it paints your ancestors (and mine) in a bad light, but there were many injustices done to the Native Americans then. There were atrocities committed by both sides when war broke out, but one things still stands. We destroyed 98% of their entire civilization, race, population, etc... just by pure accident of disease alone. There were huge impacts with the New World and the Old World. Neglecting that study would be regretful. Having said that, our state is rich in American Revolution, Civil War, etc... history and that should not be deleted from the academic curriculum.