Why is our education system collapsing? No surprise, Woodrow Wilson is involved…

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Tonight, I want to talk to you about something else that is beginning to absolutely collapse on us. It’s our education system. It has begun to collapse, and I don’t know if you remember, when we first started feeling like the country was collapsing, we feel the loss of rights, we all asked each other, “How did this happen to us? How did we get here?” And it was important to go back to Woodrow Wilson and look at the progressive era to understand what we’re going through now. We have to start at the beginning.

Well, that’s the thing that we have to do with education as well. America’s earliest days featured some of the most prolific thinkers in history, people like Thomas Jefferson, who could write two different languages at the same time. He could write sentences backward starting at the period. Franklin, who was absolutely a genius, if it wasn’t for Franklin, I contend we wouldn’t have had Faraday, we wouldn’t have had all of the electrical experiments in Paris, and we wouldn’t have probably the electric that we have now the way we do – brilliant man.

George Washington, all brilliant in their own right. Jefferson studied Latin, Greek, French, and that was by the age of nine. He was giving advice to everybody, never read any book not in its native language. He got onto a boat, he never read Spanish before. He got on a boat to go over to England. By the time he got there, he could understand and read Spanish. He brought Don Quixote in English and Spanish. And he read it, and he figured it out – brilliant man.

Benjamin Franklin invented just about everything and a huge philanthropist, started the first hospital in the United States that was a public hospital. Washington was an official county surveyor at the age of 17 years old. Now, were they a product of some giant government-run school that the king had spent all kinds of money on that somehow or another we destroyed through the American Revolution? No, there was absolutely no system in place.

In fact, for decades after our founding, most Americans were primarily educated in a way that is completely foreign to us now. They were taught at home by their parents or tutors and in a completely different way. Now, how could that be?

Teachers unions will make it sound as if without the teacher that has gone to school, there is no chance of you being anything other than an uneducated rube. They’ll tell you that you’re harming your child if you teach them at home, but the fact is going to school was not always a way of life in America. You’ll never guess when it began.

Neither the Constitution nor the Bill of Rights even mentions a public education. You’d think with these guys who were so smart they would have thought of what are we going to do for education? They knew it was the parent and the family’s responsibility. The first public school didn’t even appear until 1821. Now, progressives will suggest to you, I’m sure, that we were subhumanoid imbeciles roaming the country grunting when we wanted something, but nine out of ten people here in America, they were all farmers, were literate.

Their parents, their tutors or local educators, taught them to read, nine out of ten. And then they went out and did something really unusual, they actually read books, lots of books. I challenge you right now, go back and just Google, you know, 1870 test for eighth graders, just do it. You will never be able to even understand their mathematics. You won’t be able to do it, and it’s not Common Core. You won’t be able to process what they already knew.

You go look for their test on citizenship. It was rhetoric on citizenship. They were just asked a series of questions. You had to prove why freedom was better, and you had to do it by the time you were ten. Most adults couldn’t even do it. It was a parent’s responsibility to educate their child. You could do it yourself or the towns often had an educator that all the parents would decide, and then they would bring all the kids into the schoolhouse. Regardless of what age, everybody was together.

So what happened? Well, everything began to change rapidly during the progressive era, and I know, it’s a real shock. The long-held idea that children were the parents’ responsibility was aggressively being challenged. See what’s happening right now at our hospitals. They’re challenging your right to take care of the health. Well, they’ve already challenged your right to be responsible for their education, why not the health, then the food?

Well, it would be the turning point that began to build the progressive education infrastructure that is now collapsing our education system because it doesn’t work. But on the think tank, we wanted to show you a few key moments on what happened. In 1867, we began the Department of Education. It was called the Office of Education, now the Department of Education.

It was created with a budget of about $15,000, and it was designed to study how can we make education better? You’ll see in a minute, and you decide, did it make education better or just bigger?

1874, this is when we have the Board of Ed, and this one is really important. The Massachusetts, surprise, surprise, Board of Education stated, “The child should be taught to consider his instructor, in many respects, superior to the parent in point of authority.” That sounds exactly like Woodrow Wilson a few years later, the progressive ideal, the state knows best.

Let me give you some quick perspective on this one. We went from a nation where parents were primary in education to today, most Americans start sending their kids off to school at the age of five. Think of this, at five years old, instead of being with mom or dad or anybody in the family, your child is shipped off at 8:00 in the morning or 9:00 in the morning. You don’t usually see them again until later in the afternoon, maybe 3:00-ish. That’s six to seven hours a day that you let someone else other than you program your child.

As you know now, we do not have similar views on the country or freedom or anything else. You know it. You’re seeing it. What is it that they are programming your child to believe? This is why it’s no surprise that Mayor de Blasio is actually pushing for prekindergarten for all. This is something that they wanted to do for a very long time. They want control from cradle to grave, and with that control, they are now pushing for year-round school 12 hours a day.

But let me go back to the timeline because this is where Woodrow Wilson is introduced, Woodrow Wilson and the American Federation of Teachers. It’s a union, but remember, at the time, unions were communist looking for that communist goal. It was established in Chicago by 1918, and all states now have a compulsory attendance law within two years. So now you’re trapped. America’s youth had been trapped, and there is no way out.

In 1919, you have the Progressive Education Association, founded with the same goal of reforming the systems, and boy, did they ever. By 1922, the state of Oregon actually made it illegal for children to attend a nongovernmental school. What they were trying to do was they were trying to squeeze out the religious schools out of the education picture. That later was shot down by the Supreme Court who said children were not mere creatures of the state, but this was a harbinger of things to come.

And then you go back to 1965, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act passed by none other than the world-famous LBJ. It’s frightening, the sweeping legislation helped pave the way for federal government to exercise control and influence over the local schools through funding. They got it passed by claiming it was just for poverty areas, that’s it, but within a few years, it provided aid to 60% of America’s school districts, and we were all hooked.

By 1965, the one miniscule Office of Education now had 2,113 employees and a budget of $1.5 billion. By 1976, the NEA did something they’ve never done before, they endorsed a candidate for the very first time, the one and only Jimmy Carter. Then the one real final death blows to this whole thing, in 1979, Jimmy Carter signs a law elevating the Department of Education to cabinet level status. Now that meant your education was not in the hands of the federal government. When it’s in the cabinet, it means it is in the hands now of one man, the President of the United States. That’s who the cabinet reports to.

By 1994, it’s reported that the government was losing $3-$4 billion a year to waste, to fraud, to defaults in its student programs. They now get $72 billion a year in funding, and they all say it’s for the kids. And you’re a hatemonger who hates children, and you just want them to fail in life, you want them to live in the gutter if you oppose more education funding.

But what have been the results of this progressive education explosion? We saw what it was like at the beginning of our country where people were literate. We’ve had lots of spending. What are the results? Because it’s all about results, isn’t it? Or is it about control? Is it about conform? Look at the results, look at the spending.

We put this book out what, two weeks ago, three weeks ago, shot to the top of the New York Times best-selling list. It was the number one selling book in the country, number two on the New York Times best list, but it has everything in it that you need to stop Common Core. And it must be stopped.

I told you a minute ago we’re doing something to Stage 19. One of the things we’re doing is we’re building an entirely new set with a studio audience section of 150 people, and that is partly for Conform. We want you to go and meet with us in movie theaters all across the country, and there are 600 movie theaters now across the country that are going to be having a night of action where we all get together and learn from some of the greatest minds about this education system.

Wewillnotconform.com, you know the history, now where we go from here is up to you. Go to wewillnotconform.com and find out how to get your tickets. Tell everybody you know, and we will see you on Stage 19 from movie theaters all across the nation July 22.

  • Monte Montierth

    I started school in 1945 at the age of five. Before my first class, I got my father to give me a paper where he had written the alphabet. I memorized this before first meeting of school. I did not want to be behind. The rest of the class learned the alphabet in first and second grades, not Kindergarten. I learned to read by my father reading to me from Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories and the Sunday news paper comics section. At the age of nine I found a set of encyclopedia. Some salesman had sold the cotton pickers a set which they left behind after the season. I read every volume by the age of ten. What did I learn in School? How to get along with my piers and teachers! This is living memory. What did you learn in school?

  • Rosie Geonnotti

    I started school at the age of five; no kindergarten, first grade. I knew how to read, write and do basic math calculations. We all did. It was expected. Now children don’t even know the alphabet or numbers at that age. They struggle with reading despite hours of reading instruction and new programs left and right.
    I home schooled our two youngest special needs children for three years to get them ready for high school when they had plateaued in middle school. We were able to climb out of that plateau and move up several grade levels. My children are now productive adults who are on their own despite being told they would always function at a much lower level. Their case workers are amazed.
    Parents have forgotten that they ARE the first educators and that the brunt of education falls on them. If your child is not learning, then take it upon yourself to educate them.

  • Anonymous

    Common Core will be the final nail in the coffin of the public “schools.” The public indoctrination centers, posing as schools, has for decades now been in decline. My parents and grandparents went to small, rural one room schools. They had to learn Latin, algebra, American history and all the basics by 9th grade. Today’s public school students are far far behind what was achieved in those days before you even reached high school. This is all by design, and the leftists/communists are very patient and can wait to achieve their utopian agenda of taking over our beloved country. Control education and health, you control the people. I strongly advocate parents removing their children from the public schools and if at all possible send them to a private school or home school them. It is only to get worse and we owe it to the next generation to save them from the government run schools.

  • Jeannie Hurley

    Glenn, you make some excellent points here. One caveat I would raise is that today most parents can’t *afford* to stay home and educate their children, as much as they would like to do so. As a former high school English teacher, I can attest to the dumbing down of my students. When I attempted to have Junior Honor students read an excerpt from a college-level book discussing Puritan law, I was told that it was too hard and that I was expecting too much of them.

    My mother and father both read to my siblings and me when we were children, and my family frequently gave us books as presents, rather than (or in addition to) toys. For a good report card, we went to a book store. I was someone who would sit in the library during my free periods and read Ovid’s The Metamorphoses because I wanted to, not because it was part of a syllabus.

    But when I mentioned that to middle school students, they looked at me in shock, as if my parents were aliens. There is a real lack of appreciation for education just for the sake of knowledge. There is a real lack of inquiry and imagination. Part of that can be tied to the Progressive take-over of the system, but part of it can also be tied to the ability of the parents (or lack thereof) and their culture’s respect for (or lack thereof) education. We’re raising generations of people who cannot think for themselves, and frankly, don’t really want to.

  • Curtis

    I grew up homeless in the 1950′s – 70′s. I grew up in what was called tramp-camps at the time, on the west coast. The first time I set foot in a schoolhouse was when I enrolled my Daughter in Kindergarten. At age six or seven I realized that some of the other kids were reading. I did not even know the alphabet. I realized that I needed to learn to read or look stupid. I first began to learn to read comic books. There were no tudors, schools, or help at any level. At the age of 19 I was told that I neded a high school diploma. I studied the GED test book for about a month and passed my GED test with a score that was in the top 10%. I am now 59 years old. I have owned several successful businesses. I designed a line of commercial buildings that I later sold to a larger company. I also invented, researched and developed a gun safety lock that is now being manufactured and marketed by a major gun company. I have invented several other products in the area of safety and energy. I am currently writing several fiction novels, one that is based on our society in about 20 years where we are a plice state completely controlled by drone technology. My opint is that I believe that my life has been more enriched by the fact that I am very well educated and that education came from my own desire. I have never believed I am limited as I feel I would be if I had been educated in the government system! According to their logic I should not be able to write this simple message on this blog!

  • Anonymous

    Without a centralized education doctrine it is too difficult to indoctrinate a nation of kids.

  • Anonymous

    What a wonderful life story. The 3 R’s; master those and one has the foundation to progress in life.

  • Frances Toms

    My baby girl goes to school everyday but I still have a huge influence in her life..She is very smart. We were watching the news and she said..”man Obama really tries hard..when I put my fingers like this (moving quotes up and down) it means sarcasm and I mean he is not trying hard”..

  • Mike Nelson

    This is awesome, and it still happens today… but the ones who are advanced now are too often chided for the affront of their exceptionalism, and held to standards that cause them to “fail” out due to lack of stimulation, exclusion, or an instigated lack of patience with people who would hold them back for fear of making others feel ‘less-than’.

    Is it not ironic that Jesus – the Great Teacher – said, “Let the little children come to me,” and that our institutionalized edu-cratic bureaucracy now not only mocks God, but holds children back from excellence for their own gain?

    “Education” indeed.

  • Anonymous

    Ok, I’m a teacher of thirty-six years and guess what? I agree with so much of what you’re saying. In Texas when I give the state test, my kids usually blow the top off because I teach like my teachers did years ago. You can imagine the reaction when I tell people my “secret”. Unfortunately, the STAAR test is beyond belief. I promise you that most of our state legislature could not pass the high school tests. Glenn, if you want the truth, get in touch with me. I’d love to discuss education with you.

  • Ashby

    In an age in which information is so reliably available the argument for obligatory education is made void.

  • zemla

    They may be far behind but they sure as heck can hack the web and change your life more than you’ll ever change theirs

  • Anonymous

    This website is a perfect example of poorly educated americans. Guess what? There’s more to the world than filling up Glenn Becks wallet! And buy his line with the likes of prattle of the sort peddled by Pat and Stu and whatshizname.

  • Shawn Cameron

    Exactly they become bored or as you say are chided or mocked.

  • Guest

    is it possible that there is a bigger, more sinister reason for trying to erode wealth and ultimately collapse the economy? Are “they” trying to force parents to both work or to not be able to afford to educate their own children in their own values?

  • Rufus Peebody

    Over the long term, all forms of collectivism depend upon plunder and require certain people to decide who gets what, when, and how.

  • Anonymous

    New York mayor DeBlasio’s pre-k for all will mean your children are turned over to the city schools from the age of four until 17 or 18. There are even going to be full-day pre-k classes for some. Thus, they will have those precious little charges for about 30-35 hours a week!

  • Anonymous

    While I oppose Common Core and agree with what you say about Woodrow Wilson, you are wrong about the beginning of public education. The first law requiring public schools was in 1647 or 1648, called “Satan the Old Deluder Act” in Massachusetts. While the South didn’t have public schools at first, the founding fathers, especially Thomas Jefferson, strongly supported and promoted them. The North had them for a hundred years before the Declaration of Independence, which is what built enough well-educated people in New England to support the revolution in the first place. Public Education was promoted in the Northwest Ordinance BEFORE the Constitution!

    However these public schools were independent of government. They were local, community-sized organizations. If we want to get back to the public education that made this country successful, we need to eliminate all national interference and divide our big districts into local community-sized districts. (Big city districts are way too big and not local.) This returns the responsibility and power to the parents and teachers – the only ones who really care about the students individually. And yes, they are quite capable of making the best decisions for educating the youth!

  • Anonymous

    See http://www.smallerschools.org for further research and reasoning for why this is the real answer.

  • Guest

    The Oregon Law, if you do your research was struck down by the US Supreme Court as unconsitutional in 1925 (Pierce v. Society of Sisters)

  • Eric

    So there is a conspiracy to have both parents work? There are very good points that are in this story, but there are a few reaches. The English teacher points out the first thought I had. I don’t see how people can reach to claim that the ultimate conspiracy is control by forcing both parents to work. We should have taken the blue pill, and told Morpheus to cram that red one.