Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Texas GOP Opposes 'Critical Thinking'

In the disturbing trend category: the Texas Republican Party has released its 2012 political platform, which includes a plank calling for the removal of "critical thinking" from public school curriculum. In the platform document, the party states: "We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student's fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority." (page 20, Republican Party of Texas, 2012). The party called on teachers to focus on traditional rote memorization techniques. A critical opinion article about the new platform can be found at: http://truth-out.org/news/item/10144-texas-gop-declares-no-more-teaching-of-critical-thinking-skills-in-texas-public-schools#.T_rDOWpTUS8.email.