Black People : The Department of Education Czar and the militarization of Children

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by Putney Swope, Sep 1, 2009.

  1. Putney Swope

    Putney Swope Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Published on Tuesday, September 1, 2009 by Mother Jones
    Fast Times at Recruitment High: Arne Duncan and the Militarization of Chicago's Schools
    Secretary of Education Arne Duncan invited the Pentagon into Chicago's schools. Will he promote military schools nationwide?
    by Andy Kroll

    When Arne Duncan stepped down as the head of the Chicago Public Schools to become the secretary of education in January, the school district he left behind had little to brag about. While Duncan served as its chief executive officer, CPS received mostly average or below average rankings in "The Nation's Report Card," a Department of Education assessment of the country's largest urban school districts. Its high school graduation rates lingered at around 50 percent, well short of the national average of 70 percent. And since 2004, CPS has failed as a district to meet No Child Left Behind's "adequate yearly progress" standards. In one area, however, Chicago's schools stood out: In large part to Duncan's efforts, they were—and remain—the most militarized in America.

    Nearly 10,500 of Chicago's 203,000 sixth- through twelfth-graders participate in some kind of military program on campus, from joining the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps to enrolling in Pentagon-sponsored JROTC academies. As the district's CEO (and previously as deputy chief of staff to his predecessor, Paul Vallas), Duncan oversaw the controversial move to bring full-fledged military academies to the Windy City. The district's first, the Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville, opened in 1999, and three more followed during Duncan's tenure. Today, Chicago has six military high schools run by a branch of the armed services. Six smaller military academies share buildings with existing high schools. Nearly three dozen JROTC programs exist in regular high schools, where students attend a daily JROTC class and wear uniforms to school one day a week. And at the middle school level, there is a JROTC program for sixth, seventh- and eighth-graders.

    Chicago may have the nation's biggest JROTC program, but it is no longer an anomaly. Due to increases in federal funding for JROTC programs, the military's presence in public schools is greater than ever before. More than a dozen academies partly funded by the Department of Defense have sprouted up from Philadelphia to Oakland, and the National Defense Authorization Act of 2009 passed last year will increase the number of JROTC units nationwide from 3,400 to 3,700 by 2020, at a cost of $170 million. (Peacework magazine obtained a list of schools that have requested JROTC programs.) The Marines are in discussions to open new JROTC academies in Atlanta, Las Vegas, and New Orleans, helping to expand a program that critics contend has blurred the line between education and recruitment.

    Now that Duncan is the nation's top education official, anti-recruitment activists worry that he will use his position to promote the expansion of JROTC and military academies as solutions for cash-strapped or underperforming school districts. "We see he has been promoting military academies," says Darlene Gramigna, program director for the American Friends Service Committee's Truth in Recruitment Program. "Around the country, that's what going on—Arne Duncan believes in these military academies."

    full article;http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2009/09/01-0
     
  2. Corvo

    Corvo navigator of live MEMBER

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    This is all a step backwards!​
     
  3. Putney Swope

    Putney Swope Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Sure Your right! and the neocons are happy to see our youth shuffled off to their wars for corporate gain
     
  4. Putney Swope

    Putney Swope Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    No Child left without a swatztika

    How the No Child Left Behind Act allowed military recruiters to collect info on millions of unsuspecting teens.
    —By David Goodman



    September/October 2009 Issue
    John Travers was striding purposefully into the Westfield mall in Wheaton, Maryland, for some back-to-school shopping before starting his junior year at Bowling Green State University. When I asked him whether he'd ever talked to a military recruiter, Travers, a 19-year-old African American with a buzz cut, a crisp white T-shirt, and a diamond stud in his left ear, smiled wryly. "To get to lunch in my high school, you had to pass recruiters," he said. "It was overwhelming." Then he added, "I thought the recruiters had too much information about me. They called me, but I never gave them my phone number."
    Nor did he give the recruiters his email address, Social Security number, or details about his ethnicity, shopping habits, or college plans. Yet they probably knew all that, too. In the past few years, the military has mounted a virtual invasion into the lives of young Americans. Using data mining, stealth websites, career tests, and sophisticated marketing software, the Pentagon is harvesting and analyzing information on everything from high school students' GPAs and SAT scores to which video games they play. Before an Army recruiter even picks up the phone to call a prospect like Travers, the soldier may know more about the kid's habits than do his own parents.


    The military has long struggled to find more effective ways to reach potential enlistees; for every new GI it signed up last year, the Army spent $24,500 on recruitment. (In contrast, four-year colleges spend an average of $2,000 per incoming student.) Recruiters hit pay dirt in 2002, when then-Rep. (now Sen.) David Vitter (R-La.) slipped a provision into the No Child Left Behind Act that requires high schools to give recruiters the names and contact details of all juniors and seniors. Schools that fail to comply risk losing their NCLB funding. This little-known regulation effectively transformed President George W. Bush's signature education bill into the most aggressive military recruitment tool since the draft. Students may sign an opt-out form—but not all school districts let them know about it.
    Yet NCLB is just the tip of the data iceberg. In 2005, privacy advocates discovered that the Pentagon had spent the past two years quietly amassing records from Selective Service, state DMVs, and data brokers to create a database of tens of millions of young adults and teens, some as young as 15. The massive data-mining project is overseen by the Joint Advertising Market Research & Studies program, whose website has described the database, which now holds 34 million names, as "arguably the largest repository of 16-25-year-old youth data in the country." The JAMRS database is in turn run by Equifax, the credit reporting giant.
    Marc Rotenberg, head of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, says the Pentagon's initial failure to disclose the collection of the information likely violated the Privacy Act. In 2007, the Pentagon settled a lawsuit (filed by the New York Civil Liberties Union) by agreeing to stop collecting the names and Social Security numbers of anyone younger than 17 and promising not to share its database records with other government agencies. Students may opt out of having their JAMRS database information sent to recruiters, but only 8,700 have invoked this obscure safeguard.
    The Pentagon also spends about $600,000 a year on commercial data brokers, notably the Student Marketing Group and the American Student List, which boasts that it has records for 8 million high school students. Both companies have been accused of using deceptive practices to gather information: In 2002, New York's attorney general sued SMG for telling high schools it was surveying students for scholarship and financial aid opportunities yet selling the info to telemarketers; the Federal Trade Commission charged ASL with similar tactics. Both companies eventually settled.
    The Pentagon is also gathering data from unsuspecting Web surfers. This year, the Army spent $1.2 million on the website March2Success.com, which provides free standardized test-taking tips devised by prep firms such as Peterson's, Kaplan, and Princeton Review. The only indications that the Army runs the site, which registers an average of 17,000 new users each month, are a tiny tagline and a small logo that links to the main recruitment website, GoArmy.com. Yet visitors' contact information can be sent to recruiters unless they opt out, and students also have the option of having a recruiter monitor their practice test scores. Terry Backstrom, who runs March2Success.com for the US Army Recruiting Command at Fort Knox, insists that it is about "good will," not recruiting. "We are providing a great service to schools that normally would cost them."
    Recruiters are also data mining the classroom. More than 12,000 high schools administer the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, a three-hour multiple-choice test originally created in 1968 to match

    full article;
    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2009/09/few-good-kids
     
  5. CITIZEN

    CITIZEN Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Yes indeed!

    I wish I kept the actual reference, but I remember several references in the past few years about declining numbers of Black and Hispanic troops. The military was up in arms about it, and desperately looking at ways to get more "colored" troops.

    I agree that structure is needed, just not this kind. I like the idea of "coming of age" training for young men that someone (Putney?) mentioned, with something parallel for the young ladies.

    I am not anti-war---I just don't think we should be liberating Iraq/Afghanistan when there are clearly worse human rights violations in non-oil countries.
     
  6. Ankhur

    Ankhur Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Since neither Bush nor Cheney were not brought up on charges of what one of the still living Nuremberg judges called
    "heinous wa crimes"

    the military industrial complex will trudge on with renewed vigor after the presidents statement of seeking so called terrorists in over 40 nations.

    The military use of Haiti for war games after the earthquake could be a wake up call, and the move towards AFRICOM also seems inevitable.

    Wikileaks has exposed the plans to destablize not just Mugabe but Chavez as well

    And the ascendancy and prominence of more and more violent, and bloody video games that seem to emulate actual army , air force, and special forces training CGIs, is evident that they seek to indoctrinate children, at a younger and younger age towards a desire for very physical and up front imperialism and colonization

    Since Michael Moore's revealing documentary, Farenhieght 9/11, that exposed how Our children were targeted in the inner cities for recruitment, these efforts have invaded the halls of so called learning
     
  7. Ankhur

    Ankhur Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Published on Wednesday, June 8, 2011 by Rethinking Schools

    Early Childhood Military Education?

    by Ann Pelo



    Does our national security rely on top-quality early childhood education?
    Yes, say the military leaders of Mission: Readiness, an organization led by retired military commanders that promotes investment in education, child health, and parenting support. In March, Mission: Readiness released national and state-by-state education briefs, declaring that “high-quality early education is not only important for the children it benefits but also critical to ensuring our military’s long-term readiness. . . . Investing in high-quality early education is a matter of national security.”
    Actually, the generals are right, but for all the wrong reasons.
    They see early childhood education as military readiness training. Mission: Readiness argues that investment in early childhood education for at-risk and low-income children will pay off in higher graduation rates and lower incarceration rates—expanding the pool of potential military recruits. “Recruitment and retention challenges could return if America does not do a better job now of producing more young men and women qualified for service,” says the mission statement on the organization’s website. “We must ensure America’s national security by supporting interventions that will prepare young people for a life of military service and productive citizenship.”
    Who are the young people for whom these military leaders are supposedly advocating? Low-income, at-risk children—the pool of children from which the military has traditionally recruited. What sort of education do the generals want for these children? Skill-and-drill, standards-driven, assessment-burdened curriculum that prepares children for skill-and-drill basic training, for standards-driven military discipline, for test-based military promotion. The generals’ aim is to prepare low-income children to be soldiers, trained from their youngest years to follow directions and to comply with the strictures issued by the ranking authority. That’s not high-quality education; that’s utilitarian education designed to serve military and economic needs.
    http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/06/08
     
  8. Ankhur

    Ankhur Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Published on Wednesday, January 4, 2012 by CommonDreams.org

    Forced Military Testing in America's Schools

    by Pat Elder
    The invasion of student privacy associated with military testing in U.S. high schools has been well documented by mainstream media sources, like USA Today and NPR Radio. The practice of mandatory testing, however, continues largely unnoticed.
    The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, or ASVAB is the military's entrance exam that is given to fresh recruits to determine their aptitude for various military occupations. The test is also used as a recruiting tool in 12,000 high schools across the country. The 3 hour test is used by military recruiting services to gain sensitive, personal information on more than 660,000 high school students across the country every year, the vast majority of whom are under the age of 18. Students typically are given the test at school without parental knowledge or consent. The school-based ASVAB Career Exploration Program is among the military's most effective recruiting tools.
    In roughly 11,000 high schools where the ASVAB is administered, students are strongly encouraged to take the test for its alleged value as a career exploration tool, but in more than 1,000 schools, according to information received from the U.S. Military Entrance Processing Command through a Freedom of Information Act request, tens of thousands of students are required to take it. It is a particularly egregious violation of civil liberties that has been going on almost entirely unnoticed since the late 1960's.

    Federal laws strictly monitor the release of student information, but the military manages to circumvent these laws with the administration of the ASVAB. In fact, ASVAB test results are the only student information that leaves U.S. schools without the opportunity provided for parental consent.
    Aside from managing to evade the constraints of federal law, the military may also be violating many state laws on student privacy when it administers the ASVAB in public high schools. Students taking the ASVAB are required to furnish their social security numbers for the tests to be processed, even though many state laws specifically forbid such information being released without parental consent. In addition, the ASVAB requires under-aged students to sign a privacy release statement, a practice that may also be prohibited by many state laws.
    A typical school announcement reads, "All Juniors will report to the cafeteria on Monday at 8:10 a.m. to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery. Whether you’re planning on college, a technical school, or you’re just not sure yet, the ASVAB Career Exploration Program can provide you with important information about your skills, abilities and interests – and help put you on the right course for a satisfying career!" This announcement or one very similar to it greets students in more than a thousand high schools across the country. There's no mention of the military or the primary purpose of the test, which is to find leads for recruiters.
    http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/01/04-0?print
     
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