The parents of a five-year-old girl posted a video on YouTube last week of their daughter recalling, with some coaching from mom and dad, how a "lunchroom teacher" told her not to pray.
According to RightWingWatch.org, the little girl says she told the teacher, "It's good to pray," but claims her teacher replied, "It's not good" (video below).
The incident reportedly happened at the Carillon Elementary School in Oviedo, Fla. The girl says in the video she didn't tell her mother immediately about the incident because she "forgot to."
"The school is in violation of Department of Education guidelines that specifically protect this type of prayer, and thus could jeopardize its federal funding," Liberty Institute Senior Counsel Jeremy Dys said in a press release today.
"Mainly because of this incident, we have exercised our option as parents to teach our daughter at home," said the girl's father Marcos Perez. "We live in a very good school district, but we cannot, in good conscience, send our daughter to a school where her religious liberty has been compromised."
However, the incident did not happened, says Michael Lawrence, communications officer for Seminole County Schools.
"The situation as stated by the parent has not occurred according to the school's investigation," Lawrence told Local 6. "We're dealing with very young children here so there's quite a bit of an opportunity for miscommunication to occur. The timing and the issues were very odd considering that the first thing that happened was that a video was done, it was on YouTube."
"If a student wishes to pray at lunch to herself we do not have a policy against that," added Lawrence.
For reasons unknown, the girl's parents have not allowed the school to interview her over the incident.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, Marcos Perez is the Vice President of sales at Charisma House, which just happens to be the Christian book publisher of Fox News reporter Todd Starnes' upcoming book, God Less America: Real Stories from the Front Lines of the Attack on Traditional Values.
According to a press release by Charisma House last month, Perez praised Starnes' book:
“We are highly anticipating the release of God Less America,” said Marcos Perez, vice president of sales at Charisma House. “From a sales standpoint, we believe this contest will engage our partnering bookstores and add to the momentum that is already building for this book release.”
The Liberty Counsel told Local 6 they have not investigated the incident independently, but Dys said, "I don't think a 5-year-old girl is going to create or concoct a story like this."
A short paper that reportedly got an University of North Carolina (UNC) football player an "A-minus" grade made the rounds on the web today.
The one-paragraph paper was originally posted on Twitter and appears to back up an academic scandal at UNC that was brought to light by former professor Mary Willingham and former student Deunta Williams, notes BleacherReport.com.
"Some of these [college] students could read at a second or third grade level," Willingham told ESPN. "Students were taking classes that really didn't exist. They were called independent studies at that time and they just had to write a paper... There was no attendance."
Williams confirmed that these "easy paper classes" exist and were pointed out to students by their academic advisors.
"Their job isn't necessarily to make Deunta Williams a better person, a smarter person," Williams told ESPN. "Their job is to make sure I'm eligible to play."
Back in January, former UNC football player Michael McAdoo also claimed that there were easy classes for football players, which were promoted by academic advisors.
“They pretty much put me in that class,” McAdoo told NewsObserver.com. “They pretty much told me... that I might want to consider that class and I really don’t have much time to think about it, so [I might] want to take that class while it was available.”
Lonestar College-University Park student Lauren Firmin and her peers suffered through their Intro to Chemistry class this semester, only to find out their instructor had taught the wrong course.
"She told her mistake in class to all of the students,” Firmin said. “She was teaching general chemistry, another course, all semester.”
Firmin, a previously straight-A student, suspected something was wrong when she and her other classmates began to flunk the class.
Just before the class’ final exam, teacher Thao Shirley Nguyen announced that she had taught the wrong course the entire semester. Instead of Intro to Chemistry, she had taught a general chemistry course.
Though Nguyen proposed to offer extra credit, Firmin only managed to bring her grade up to a “B”, which ruined her 4.0 grade average.
“4.0 students, we are really stressed out altogether, but this just added to it to see what I have been working for, for two years destroyed,” Firmin said.
When asked to comment, Executive Director of College Relations John Powell noted that the school does not perform formal investigations into classes.
Firmin, who attempted to appeal her “B” grade, was ruled against by the university.
Just 24 hours after a student committed suicide, his former teacher took to Facebook to call the boy a “brat” and a “bully.”
“You were a moody, disrespectful little brat,” Australian teacher Simon Cox wrote of the 16-year-old student.
In the same post, Cox criticized the boy’s parents for making excuses about his behavior and described the boy’s death as unimportant.
“Nothing special,” Cox wrote. “Now I’ve got to wash my hair.”
In response to the Facebook rant, the student’s uncle Peter Britten claimed the insults were unjustified. He described his nephew as a stay-at-home kind of kid and loved by all.
Dozens of parents who saw the post called for Cox to be fired.
According to the Northern Territory’s Education deputy chief executive Susan Bowden, Cox has turned in his resignation, which will be effective April 14.
In a statement, the Department of Education apologized for Cox’s behavior.
During Saturday’s broadcast of the "Eagle Forum Live" radio show, a caller complained, "Hispanics, I don't know how they're doing it, they're going to school for free. I'll be paying my student loans forever."
"I wonder if that's how Obama got through Columbia and Harvard," growled radio host Phyllis Schlafly, reports RightWingWatch.org (audio below).
"He's never released his records, so we don't know," claimed Schlafly. "Maybe as a foreigner he got through free, we don't know, why doesn't he tell us the truth."
In reality, President Barack Obama is not a "foreigner" and announced in 2012 that he and Michelle paid off their student loans "eight years ago," which was 2004, noted Yahoo! News.
"I do know there are, within some of these university, diversity programs, where they provide scholarships for, among others and to a high degree, for Hispanic scholarships which is giving a free ride," lamented Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa.
"I don’t know about the legality of these students, you can’t get that found out,” added King.
“But that’s pretty tough when you pay your student loans, you’re competing for a job, you haven’t spent a lot of money paying tuition to learn another language because you want to live and work in America where we have always focused on English as our national language if not our official language yet, there’s just a huge inequality there,” King complained.
Hannibal-LaGrange University in Missouri un-invited a gay student after he outed himself.
Chase Martinson took a break from the school's nursing program in 2013.
He then posted on Facebook in December 2013:
I'm gay. Just so everyone knows for sure. It's official. And yes, I'll still see you guys in heaven. And no my status wasn't hacked.
When Martinson tried to return to Hannibal-LaGrange in January, he was re-accepted and asked to apply to the Honors Program.
However, in March, Martinson got a letter
saying that his application to return was undergoing a “review process" and was in a state of inactivity.
The school's letter advised Martinson to read the Hannibal-LaGrange student handbook.
Martinson called the school's Office of Admissions about the letter.
“I asked to speak to the man who wrote me the letter," Martinson told ConnectTriStates.com. "He said that I had received it because I was outside the moral guidelines, and in the letter, it said two specific pages in the student handbook, pages 20 and 27, which deal with sexual misconduct, premarital sex acts, extramarital sex, homosexual acts."
Page 20 of the school handbook says:
Misuses of God’s gift will be understood to include, but will not be limited
to, sexual abuse, sexual harassment, sexual assault, homosexual actions, incest, adultery, fornication, and sex outside of marriage as defined by the State of Missouri is prohibited.
Page 27 says:
Sexual impropriety includes but is not limited to participation in, or appearance of, engaging in premarital sex, extramarital sex, homosexual activities, or cohabitations on or off campus. The promotion, and advocacy of, or ongoing practice of a homosexual lifestyle is contrary to institution expectations and is therefore prohibited.
"I just wanted to be me, and I never had any idea this would happen," Martinson told Daily RFT. "I thought I was already in, but then they send me this letter saying, 'Just kidding.'"
In response to the Christian school, Martinson wrote on Facebook:
It is very unfortunate that such a university, which stands so prominently on their Christian values, rebukes those who are not within those guidelines., selectively, of course. Well good thing Jesus Christ was never associated with sinners, thieves, prostitutes, cheats, the lame, etc. Hannibal-LaGrange University should be ashamed of itself, it's repugnant. Even if invited back, I would never return to a university where I was bullied, ridiculed and put down just because of the way I am.
A seventh grade workbook that says guns have to be registered, per the Second Amendment, is causing a furor at Grant Middle School in Springfield, Ill.
According to Examiner.com, the workbook says the Second Amendment "states that people have the right to certain weapons, providing that they register them and they have not been in prison."
However, the Second Amendment never mentions gun registration or prison.
An unidentified parent posted a picture (above) of the workbook on the "Illinois Gun Owners Rights" Facebook page.
The parent said that he met with his child's teacher about changing the workbook.
“I even told the school officials I talked to that you can’t reword the Constitution to what you think it should be and you should only teach what it is,” the parent said.
Not surprisingly, the picture has gone viral on Facebook.
Some Facebook commenters falsely blamed Common Core, a set of education standards that have been demonized in conservative circles.
According to a new report by the U.S. Department of Education, black preschoolers are more likely to be suspended from public schools than white kids.
While black kids make up 18 percent of children in preschools, about 50 percent of them are suspended more than once, reports the Associated Press.
Black kids are three times more likely to be suspended and expelled than white children. This disparity applies to both boys and girls.
Several education advocates told the Associated Press that "zero tolerance" policies adopted by schools are ushering black children out of schools and into prisons.
According to The New York Times, zero tolerance policies began over drugs and then dramatically escalated after the 1999 Columbine school massacre, which cost student lives and triggered numerous lawsuits against the school.
“A knee-jerk reaction for minor offenses, suspending and expelling students, this is not the business we should be in,” Robert Runcie, the Broward County Schools superintendent in Florida, told The New York Times.
“A routine school disciplinary infraction should land a student in the principal’s office, not in a police precinct,” U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said in January.
Sources: The New York Times, Associated Press, Justice.gov
High school student Aaron Pafitt was suspended from school for two days after he led a protest about the lack of homework at his school.
The 14-year-old first contacted Blackpool Council and Ofsted to raise concerns about the quality of education he believed he was receiving.
“I failed my math exam in school,” Pafitt said, “And I was really worried because I just wanted to make sure I was able to do the work properly.”
However, he soon lost patience with their lack of responsiveness and decided to take matters into his own hands.
During the walkout, Pafitt was joined by nearly 100 other students.
Pafitt’s mother was outraged by the school's decision, arguing that her son was trying his best to get a decent education.
Since last year, Bispham High School has been put under special measures because the standards of the school are so low. A report conducted in September revealed that the school was making "reasonable progress" toward higher education standards.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, recently told the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators that the United Nations was trying to take away their parenting rights.
According to RawStory.com, Cruz falsely claimed that the Convention on the Rights of the Child would somehow allow the United Nations to make parenting decisions for American adults (video below).
“We need to do everything humanly possible to prevent ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child," said Cruz. "Nothing in international law, nothing in any treaty should be used as a backdoor vehicle to undermine the rights of every parent here to raise your children consistent with your faith, with your good judgement and the love you have for your children."
The conspiracy theories about the Convention on the Rights of the Child started with the late Sen. Jesse Helms, R-N.C., and have been pushed by conservative groups such as the Heritage Foundation and The Home School Legal Defense Association.
According to RightWingWatch.org, Michael Farris, head of the HSLDA, falsely claimed in 2012, "My kid wears glasses, now they’re disabled, now the UN gets control over them. My child’s got a mild case of ADHD, now you’re under control of the UN treaty. There’s no definitional standard, it can change over time, and the UN, not American policymakers, are the ones who get it decided."
In reality, the Convention on the Rights of the Child calls for ending the abuse and exploitation of children, including the death penalty.