Outcomes…The Real Content of Transformational OBE
Across our country the outcomes being implemented in each state are suspiciously parallel; their content is effectively identical. In most cases, as revealed by the outcomes list in this chapter, the outcomes deal with attitudes, values, and behaviors. When solid subjects like math and science are included, the emphasis is not on content but rather on process. Outcomes are the goals and direction which the child is moved toward. These outcomes drive the system and are the cornerstone of the laws being introduced around the country.
So, Exactly What Is An Outcome?
An outcome is a broad category of behavior and skills that a student must demonstrate. Whereas students used to be required to demonstrate their knowledge in a particular subject, say math, now they must exhibit "mastery of an outcome." Consider two examples of outcomes from Oregon:
Since it is the outcomes that become the basis for receiving one's diploma (certificate of mastery), their importance is paramount. They replace academic subjects. Consider the focus of your child's school day consisting of subjects such as identifying the community's problems, civil rights defended worldwide, solving interpersonal problems and conflicts, using the environment responsibly, being worldwide citizens, understanding and accepting diversity.
Children will be assessed based on their changing attitudes toward these subjects. All occurs under the auspices of the child's self-esteem which is considered paramount to all other considerations. The definitions of these subjective subjects must be based on someone's political viewpoint. The question is, Whose? Do you suppose it will be the parent's viewpoint? Or would it perhaps be the viewpoint of the majority of the community? Whose values will be used to determine if the child has assimilated the philosophy of the outcome or is exhibiting the correct behavior?
How Can The Outcomes Be The Same Everywhere?
During the phase of implementation designed to make people comfortable with the outcomes, citizens from Pennsylvania to Oregon were told the outcomes were locally determined. Even after a quick look at the published information it is clear that the outcomes represent a cohesive effort to move to a nationalized system of education. If this is not the case, how did the outcomes end up being the same from state to state? It appears that the guiding hand of government was heavily involved.
The outcomes from more than forty states are nearly identical in content. To acquire a first-hand understanding of this, take some time to compare the following outcomes from various states. The listing order and wording varies, but that is where their dissimilarities end. The point of listing the many state outcomes is not to analyze whether individual outcomes are good or bad, but to demonstrate that they are the result of a collective effort across the nation. When a national school board is coupled with a list of national education outcomes, it amounts to a national system of education. A short key is provided to aid comparison of the outcomes. The letter identifies the state and the number identifies which outcome under that state is similar to others on the same line.
1. Work cooperatively and independently.OREGON
1. Exhibit self-esteem and adaptability in real world situations.GEORGIA
James Madison gave the grave warning that, among other things, the government may attempt to "take into their hands the public education of children ... Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for [i.e. government controlling the education of children] it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited government established by the people of America." The founders knew that letting the federal government involve itself in education was fraught with danger to the freedom of citizens. This is why they did everything they could to design a system that would keep the federal government out of education. But the government has every intention to be deeply involved with education at every level. Consider the following letter from G. Leland Bumingham, the state superintendent of public instruction for Utah. This letter was written on July 27, 1984 to T H. Bell, President Reagan's Secretary of Education:
I am forwarding this letter to accompany the proposal which you recommended Bill Spady and I prepare in connection with Outcome-Based Education.As I have said, Spady is known as the father of OBE. This letter reveals that Bell recommended Spady and Burningham submit a proposal for federal funding (which they received) for a plan making it possible to put OBE in every school of the nation. Clearly these are the building blocks of a national system of education.
The aforementioned outcomes are the areas in which students will have to demonstrate mastery before they can receive their certificate of initial mastery. In a few of the outcomes academics are mentioned, but even then the emphasis is not on content but on process. It is difficult for someone who has had any amount of traditional education to look at these outcomes and understand how it is possible that these will become the focus of the learning day.
Even if Americans were to accept an education system that minimized the role of academic knowledge, is it wise to allow such subjective outcomes to be the basis on which students are to be assessed? In a word, no! Anita Hoge asks five vital questions that reveal the dangers of such a system:
1. How do you measure that outcome?In transformational outcome-based education these outcomes become the primary thrust, not a math class or a science class. Even many teachers have a hard time accepting this idea, which is why the National Training Laboratory is committed to "change teachers' inflexible patterns of thinking." This statement from the NTL reveals their disdainful view of teachers' attitudes.
It is disingenuous to paint the entire spectrum of teachers with the broad, negative stroke of a brush when they are the ones the NTL relies upon to implement their social agenda. It is also unfair in the extreme. Many teachers in American public schools work under a tremendous load of large classrooms and no provision for student discipline which makes their task nearly impossible. Some of the teachers I know are the most creative, hard-working people I have ever met. There is nothing inflexible about the way they teach. I would encourage teachers as a whole to consider the attitude behind such statements as that made by the NTL. Upon closer consideration it may be apparent that the teacher is only a pawn in their game of social revolution.
Many people involved with schools that have begun to implement OBE will protest that this is not what they are doing. It may well not be what they are doing ... now. Remember there are four stages to the implementation of OBE. Those schools have not yet reached the transformational stage of OBE, but that is where they are headed because that is where the federal government and other change-agents are taking education.
What has been demonstrated is that the outcomes in varying states across America are not only academically deficient, but they are also identical in real content. This is simply too coincidental not to have been engineered by the federal government and other national organizations. This level of uniformity creates a dangerous potential of inviting increasing government control over education ... control that the federal government is positioning itself to usurp.
Get The Book!Outcome Based Education: Understanding the Truth About Education Reform by Ron Sunseri
Suggested Reading List - the Demise of the Educational System - OBE (Outcome-Based Education), NEA (National Education Association), educational psychology, German psychology & influences, demise of public education, educational sabotage, Wundt, Pavlov, Dewey, Skinner, Watson.
Say NO To Psychiatry!
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