Our society is covered with plenty of boils and pimples from our attempts to do the ‘right thing’ with all the political correctness we can muster. A correspondent sent me a piece on the California Teachers Association website in which the union highlights the politically correct sensitivities and behaviors of teachers confronting students who come to their classrooms from different cultures – ‘Are You Culturally Competent?’ It is definitely worth a read for a better understanding of what goes on behind the curtain that ails us.
The American school is one place where a student new to our country should unambiguously learn what are our customs, language norms, behavioral protocols, dress codes, etc in the course of being taught the subject matter for which he is attending class. There is already precious little time to get the lesson into the little darlings’ heads without detours to account for what may or not be familiar or acceptable to one or another student. The lesson behind the lesson that the foreign student should learn is that when he’s in American society, then do as Americans do. His home and relatives, not the classroom, are the place and people to teach, practice, and perpetuate his culture of origin.
The fundamental lesson to be learned is that we Americans respect your culture to the extent that you learn and practice America’s culture when in our public arena. We want you to become at one with us, and not the other way around. Diluting that effort to acculturate foreign students in our schools in order to demonstrate ‘cultural competency’ works to impede, or at least slow down, assimilation. And this goes doubly for students who come from global cultures which have already self-declared and demonstrated themselves to be inimical to traditional American values and mores. (As a non-English speaker from Europe, I was among the tens of thousands of foreign kids fortunate enough to have been introduced to America in public schools at a time when such progressive impediments were not in vogue.)
In sum, this is yet another illustration from the catalog of crap that burdens unionized teachers in public education to the ultimate detriment of us all.