Saturday, August 29, 2015

Moses with the Tablets of the Law - has founded a biblical figure America closeup?

Moses with the Tablets of the Law - has founded a biblical figure America closeup?
Image; Corbis
Krude theses in Texas' textbooks: Moses, the first American. Texas introduces new textbooks and transfigured in the US history: Religious influences are exaggerated, slave trade downplayed as a trigger of the civil war. Nevertheless, teachers teach may soon statewide so.

Moses was a founding father of America. This realization mediate the new textbooks for social studies and history, which are issued at the beginning of the school year in the US state of Texas. Historians and educational organizations throw the books in front of falsification of history. In the review are the social studies and history of major educational publishers McGraw-Hill, Pearson Education, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, as well as smaller publishers like Perfection Learning. The new teaching materials are now being used in secondary state schools from the 9th grade, probably a decade.

Five million children will learn these new books, Texas is the second largest market for textbooks. Therefore, publishers such as McGraw-Hill and Pearson submit their texts to the Texas standards and sell the books then textually unchanged in other states to save additional printing costs - and so the books could soon end up in satchels of young people in Louisiana or Tennessee.

Far-fetched and hard to confirm
Students learn then that the founding fathers were based on the ideas of the prophet Moses in writing the US Constitution. "Where did the founding fathers their ideas?" Is a question in social studies book by Perfection Learning. The following list lists Moses in the first place on, even before the British philosopher John Locke, the French political philosopher Charles de Montesquieu and the British jurist William Blackstone.

Historians criticize that Moses' alleged contribution to the basic ideas of the constitution remains nebulous. In addition, the transmission of the Ten Commandments from a biblical tradition of historical fact should be glorified. "These books teach students that Moses was the first American", complains Kathleen Wellman, history professor at Southern Methodist University.

Also, the social studies book by Pearson Education provides a religiously tinted view. For example, the book will explain to students that the roots of democracy are in the earliest history of mankind: "They [the roots] date back to ancient Greece and Rome and include elements of the Judeo-Christian philosophy based on texts in the Old Testament and biblical figures like Moses and Solomon go back. " A connection that is at least far-fetched, and above all hard to confirm.

Republican occupied Panel developed the standards
But even the relatively young history of the Civil War is the history textbook from McGraw-Hill, well, presented unusual: "Southerners relied on national laws to justify secession." That it was doing in order to keep the right slaves, is not reported. Dan Quinn, spokesman for the nonprofit Texas Freedom Network, which criticized as obfuscation. The books thus propagated the myth that "the Confederates had fought for a noble cause as national laws rather than a cruel institution that permitted the sale and possession of people."

The fact that the controversial passages are ever gets into the textbooks, is on the state curriculum in Texas: The school board sets the standards for the plans to them then the publishers must be oriented, because only if the textbooks meet these prescribed standards, they are for the sale and use in Texas released.

The curriculum was last revised in 2010 by the Texas Board of Education. The standards, which decided the 15-member panel, worried even then stir. They are even more far reaching than what is now available in the textbooks: "Overall, the books give the history of balanced again as required by the standards, but in some respects the publishers have obviously thought they would have to meet the demands of the school board." says Quinn.

Only three historians among the examiners
Had it been the intention of the predominantly republican body occupied, the teaching materials should have mentioned neither the segregation laws nor the Ku Klux Klan. The Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a conservative think tank Education, gave the standard, the school grade D (in Germany a four) and accused them of politically motivated distortion of history. Faced with criticism, replied the former board member Don McLeroy in a television interview: "One of the biggest criticisms of the old books was that they contained too many details and it was not possible to teach all these things." Therefore, you have just repaint.
McLeroy also referred to the Control Committees who have examined each text again on error. The members of these commissions convened the committee itself, however - and the Texas Freedom Network determined that among the more than one hundred inspectors were only three historians.

Critics hope that teachers teaching with additional teaching materials accumulate, as from the Internet. "It is up to parents and teachers to fill the gaps in the books and to provide a balanced view of American history to our children," said Quinn. His concern: "Some of them did not enjoyed the same patchy history education."


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