Sunday, April 17, 2005

Rep. Linda Flores gets it right!

Flores Announces Oregon's Cultural Competency Plan For Education Is Unconstitutional
According to a recent Legislative Counsel opinion, the "cultural competency" definition and five-year plan of implementation throughout the educational system, from pre-school through graduate schools of education, violates free speech provisions of both the Oregon Constitution and the U.S. Constitution...

The issue arose out of a May 2004 meeting of a "Cultural Competence Summit" sponsored by the Oregon Department of Education. The invitation-only gathering determined that the definition of cultural competence is "based on social justice and equity" requiring "teachers to advocate for social justice."...

"It was obvious to me that this is a flawed document. I asked legislative counsel for an opinion on whether the state can require a teacher or administrator to advocate for the state's definition of social justice as a condition of licensure, or under threat of revocation of their license?"...

Read the report:

Working Definition of Cultural Competence
Cultural competence is a developmental process occurring at individual and system levels that evolves over
an extended time period. Cultural competence requires that individuals and organizations:

a.) Have a defined set of values and principals, demonstrated behaviors, attitudes, policies and
structures that enable them to work effectively in a cross-cultural manner.

b.) Demonstrate the capacity to 1.) value diversity, 2.) engage in self-reflection, 3.) manage the
dynamics of difference, 4.) acquire and institutionalize cultural knowledge, and 5.) adapt to the
diversity and the cultural contexts of the communities they serve.

c.) Incorporate and advocate the above in all aspects of leadership, policy making, administration,
practice, and service delivery while systematically involved customers, key stakeholders, and

Notions of Equity and Social Justice: The work notes produced by many tables indicate a
consensus that cultural competence is more than more just effectively meeting the needs
of all students by providing teachers with the requisite knowledge and skills. Rather,
cultural competence entails actively challenging the status quo and advocating for equity
and social justice. For example, one table noted the need to incorporate “institutionalized
notions of power, privilege, and oppression” into the definition. Another table noted the
need to “acknowledge power differences and silencing.” Thus, for many, cultural
competence is transformative and political.

Equity Issues
· Exhibits capacity to promote equity of student access and outcomes
· Advocates for social justice
· Exhibits awareness of key concepts: privilege, affirmative action, assimilation vs.
pluralism, color blindness vs. color awareness, meritocracy, etc.
· Ability to identify, discuss, and challenge institutional racism and bias
· Recruits and promotes the success of a diverse staff – creates a respectful and
collaborative environment
· Awareness of laws and policies affecting learners

This is scary stuff. The homogenous liberal culture present in our public schools should make any parent nervous. Rather than teach our kids "color blindness" (Dr. King's Dream) they want to teach "color awareness." Instead of teaching that we are all Americans with lots of similarities they want to stress our differences. And God help you if you don't think that transsexuals are normal. I'm glad that Rep. Flores is doing her best to put a stop to this garbage.

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