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Disability, Schooling and the Radical Socialist Filter

Posted By: Montgomery Granger on December 3, 2002
"Colonialism" and "democratization" are terms that belie the true agenda of those seeking to enjoin disabled students into a "symbiotic" relationship with other minorities. Seen through the radical socialist filter, it is easy to understand this simplistic review of how diasabled students are disadvantaged in our educational institutions. How indeed do we educate disabled students in "schools of excellence"? First, we need to establish "schools of excellence." They rarely exist because of the radical socialist control of our schools. More and more attention is being payed to "minorities," instead of paying attention to those who need our help: poorly achieving students; no matter their gender, race, religion, disability. Why discriminate against "majority" students who need help? Because to the radical socialist, the majority is priveleged, and therefore deserves no extra consideration. How absurd! Not that any person should be ignored, but to purposly ignore the largest segment of a population in favor of focusing an unreasonable amount of resources on a fraction of the population is societal suicide. It is the dumbing-down of our youth. Why is it we spend so much time, money and effort on educating the "disadvantaged," "disabled" and truants, yet so little on the gifted and talented; those who one would suspect could help raise the opportunity platform for those less gifted? Once again, the radical socialist movement in education, founded with Dewey himself, consider the gifted and talented a priveleged class, therefore not deserving of attention. The socialist view of "to each according to their needs and from each according to their abilities" is superbly flawed when the radical socialist regime decides what individuals need and how much each can contribute. They fail to realize that in this country, founded for religious freedom, liberty and the persuit of happiness, set forth a society that believes in a free market, capitalism and the "American Dream." Real democracy is never discussed, just "democratic"-socialist ideals. This is all pie in the sky. PL 94-142 set in motion a vastly different reality than it should have. "Least restrictive environment" has been taken out of context to the point where no one discusses "appropriate setting," as determined by the classroom teacher. So often now we see disabled students mainstreamed into settings that don't benefit themselves and surely put the other students at risk of not learning. So, should we cry and whine about disabled students being discriminated against and change our schools to accommodate even the most needy? Or do we model our schools after the real world and say: "Here are your opportunities, learn what you can while you can; we'll help you along the way, but we're not going to stack the deck for you and let you "win" every time we play checkers." The "self-esteem" movement failed miserably here and it seems those who championed it are on to a new horse. It is a cruel and unfair world in which we live. We need to help students prepare for this world just a surely as we need to be compassionate. Pragmatism needs to outweigh feelings that we can do more to help those with less. We do plenty. How about paying as much attention (money, time, effort, laws) on those who show potential for excellence and beyond? Any takers? Probably not. So, the REAL minority, excluded and ignored, with narry a support group, are those gifted and talented kids whose only advocates are their parents. No CSE meetings, no IEP's, no "special education" staff. It's sad. It's a crime against nature that we should ignore these, our brightest stars, for the ones that will most probably never shine as bright.

M.J. Granger
District Administrator
Comsewogue School District
Port Jefferson Station, NY

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 Disability, Schooling and the Radical Socialist Filter by Montgomery Granger on December 3, 2002
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