"You can serve your country by tutoring or mentoring a child," was one of President Bush's suggestions during his Nov. 8 address to the nation, when he discussed how Americans can help in the war against terrorism.
Sex ed teachers in Frederick County, Maryland, can't tell students to save sex for marriage. A new curriculum change approved by the school board allows teachers to encourage abstinence as "a healthy, safe and responsible decision for adolescents," but forbids them to advise students to wait until marriage before having sex. One board member said it was "unrealistic" to tell students to abstain and that linking sex to marriage constituted a "religious belief" that should not be taught in the public schools.
New study finds most students have inflated self-esteem. Research by Dr. Jean Twenge of San Diego State University shows that American students' sense of themselves, particularly by college age, often surpasses their abilities and accomplishments. Twenge found that, while high self-esteem may provide more satisfaction with life, it can also set young people up for disappointment. She blames the self-esteem movement in the schools, which places more emphasis on feel-good slogans than actual accomplishment.
A Vermont teacher was fired for showing movies containing graphic sexual scenes and profanity. Green Mountain High School teacher Jay Van Stechelman was removed by the school board for showing the movies without parental notification or the approval of the principal. Also cited in the firing was his description of the Christian church as "male-dominated" and its physical design as "phallic."
Aztec human sacrifice is part of Hispanic studies classes at California high schools. The Orange County Register reported (6/19/01) that one teacher plunged a knife into a jello "heart" to create excitement for the class.