Saturday, October 10, 2009

Ideology over education in Texas

Rev. Peter Marshall, in his appointed role as a Social Studies curriculum expert, shows he’s no history scholar in the review he wrote of the recommendations of the curriculum writing teams. This unqualified out of state preacher was appointed by State Board of Education members Cynthia Dunbar and Barbara Cargill.

In Marshall’s analysis of the high school U.S. history class, he writes that the United States returned to Mexico “over half of the territory it conquered” during the Mexican-American War, “drawing the border only where we had claimed it to be before the war – the Rio Grande River.” He’s absolutely wrong. Mexico ceded 55 percent of its territory to the U.S. including what are now the states, California, Nevada, Utah and most of Arizona as well as parts of other bordering states.

Dunbar and Cargill appointed the incredibly unqualified Rev. Marshall apparently because he endorses their social conservative agenda. Rev. Marshall runs Peter Marshall Ministries and his website promotes books for school age children. The man is an amateur historian at best and takes similar liberties with the facts in the books he writes and sells on the website.

Educating our children is one of the most important tasks of government, allowing unqualified ideologues to interfere with the quality of that education is unacceptable. I urge the teachers who have volunteered to develop the curriculum that will guide our children’s education for the next decade to file Rev. Marshall’s critique in the circular file where it belongs.

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