George Orwell’s Animal Farm, CVUSD’s BookGate, Our Children, and YOU!

Parental Rights versus Educator-Experts, SA (Self-Appointed)

 

By Deborah Baber Savalla

Monique McKenna is a public school teacher. On January 25, 2018 she inserted herself into the ongoing CVUSD, (Conejo Valley Unified School District), School Board discussion about the Board’s new policy regarding 9-12 core literature texts.

School Board policy 6161.1 is firmly rooted in California Department Education Code (CDE). The new policy greatly expands the opportunity for teachers to choose texts to use in their literature classrooms. The policy offers them a clear, unambiguous path to follow for approval of any book a teacher wants to add to the list which the CDE annotates as being “published for an adult readership and thus contains mature content.” The CDE annotation goes on to advise educators AND parents alike that, “Before handing the text to a child, educators and parents should read the book and know the child.”

Set aside the fact that the CDE cautions BOTH parents and educators about certain books, the number of books with the annotation is 323 out of the 2,537 books listed for the 9-12 “grade span”. Said another way, there remain 2,214 books on the CDE list (87%) a teacher can choose from and use in the classroom tomorrow! Teacher Monique McKenna censors this reasonable approach to the delicate balancing act among parental rights, Board policy, and classroom education.

Monique McKenna’s remarks suggest she would deny the rights of others who disagree with her view. Like fat, cigar-smoking Pig-Napoleon in George Orwell’s 1945 novelette Animal Farm, public school Teacher-Pig Monique McKenna believes “all are equal but some are more equal than others!” According to TP McKenna she knows best and better than parents what her child-students should and “must” read if their young minds are to be stimulated, their thinking become critical, and their self-awareness sufficient to deal with “the complicated world around them”.

Teacher-Pig McKenna disingenuously asks the question: “Do you consider ‘The Catcher in the Rye’ pornography? She does so because she is ill-equipped to answer the real question at issue which is this: To what extent should parents’ exercise their rights over their children’s exposure to material and values that may be contrary to what the parents believe is best for their children.

Does Monique Pig-Napoleon have children? Does she believe the teachers at Calvary Christian School or at Al-arqam Islamic School or at Chabad’s Lamplighters Jewish Academy really know best how to educate HER children simply because they too are teachers? Or are teachers outside the public school system less EQUAL to the task of ‘stimulating imaginations, critical thinking, and understanding of themselves’,the students, because those teachers would likely not endorse teaching Catcher in the Rye, or Bluest Eye, or I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, or Aunt Julia and the Script Writer?

Does T-Pig McKenna really believe she knows the children better than the children’s parent do? Her remarks certainly suggest she does. How terribly elitist of her! How disgusting of McKenna to place her teachered-self above reproach!

Excuse me, Ms. Monique McKenna, but you actually work for me… the taxpayer. And were I able to do so today, I would send you home with a pink slip and the words: “You’re Fired!”


Deborah Baber Savalla is a former New York City book publishing executive. She believes in moral clarity because it leads naturally to personal responsibility which WILL RESULT in small government. 


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Conejo School Board member Mike Dunn comments on BookGate, 1 Jul 2017

Do You Know What YOUR Child Is Reading? Parental Rights and Controversial Books in Public School Curricula 5 Sep 2017

When Is Literature Not Literature For Public School Students? 23 Sep 2017

Conejo Schools “BookGate” war continues 7 Oct 2017

Conejo resident employs religious and constitutional principles to dispute school district book selections 17 Oct 2017

Next Tuesday in T.O.: Who “owns” the children? Who sets school policy? 9 Nov 2017

JUST THE FACTS | Conejo Valley School Board Proposed Curriculum Policy | BookGate, 12 Nov 2017

Articles on Conejo Valley school books dispute- vote is Tuesday 11-14-17, 13 Nov 2017

Adult-rated literature for minor children at CVUSD – if parents want it 13 Nov 2017

Articles on Conejo Valley school books dispute- vote is Tuesday 14 Nov 2017

Conejo Valley Faux Book Banning Controversy: Just the tip of a dangerous iceberg 24 Nov 2017

Fairness Prevails on Conejo Valley Unified School District Book Controversy 21 Dec 2017

6 Responses to George Orwell’s Animal Farm, CVUSD’s BookGate, Our Children, and YOU!

  1. Guy Incognito January 29, 2018 at 12:06 pm

    Dear Lady,

    I was actually responding to Mr. Gabrielson who DID refer to a teachers as a nihilists. I should have made that more clear. But, thanks for living up to all of my expectations anyway. God Bless!

    Reply
    • Deborah Baber-Savalla January 29, 2018 at 9:12 pm

      Dear Guy,

      You’re welcome. And thank you for your nihilist clarification and for living up to my expectations as well. Both of us can check the box!

      Reply
  2. Guy Incognito January 28, 2018 at 4:25 pm

    Snowball was a metaphor for Leon Trotsky, not the tax payers. Also, didn’t you call a CVUSD teacher a nihilist? Maybe you should relax with all the character assassination stuff. God bless!

    Reply
    • Deborah Baber-Savalla January 28, 2018 at 8:09 pm

      Dear Guy Incognito… It has been my experience that often when people are incognito and do not own their remarks it is because they are cowards. Further, you either have me mistaken with someone else or you are making a lame attempt at a slight. No, I’ve never called a CVUSD teacher a nihilist but there are CVUSD teachers who have called me and others who do not share their views “terrorists”. There is no character assassination in my column. Why? Because you simply cannot assassinate a person’s character when that person has already done so to herself.

      Reply
  3. William Hicks January 27, 2018 at 11:31 am

    To answer Barry Gabrielsons initial question, we got here when school board members became full-time employee’s and teachers joined unions.

    It’s a very incestuous relationship between teachers union funds being used to “help” elect complicit school board members willing to give teachers what they want for the endorsement of the teachers union. At least that’s my experience after a 43 year career with The Los Angles Unified School District.

    Reply
  4. Barry Gabrielson January 27, 2018 at 9:08 am

    How did we get here, to the place where the Teachers believe that they control the classroom, the curriculum, what is taught, how its taught, that teacher (Napoleon) is God in that classroom, no one dare question God, from students, parents, even School Board members. At CVUSD, teachers are Napoleon, Unions are the attack Dog protecting Napoleon, parents and children are Snowball. Again, how did we parents and children get into this position, of servants to the masters? It all started with electing Ex-teachers to the School Board, those who represent Napoleon, one one side, that should represent children and parents, the opposite side is Unions supporting Napoleon. In this agreement, made by Unions, Phelps, Connolly and others, Napoleon cant be judged, fired, repremand, loss of pay, for any reason in the classroom. Teachers get automatic raises, get highest salaries (86K) and 35% benefit package, 85% of highest salaries once they retire, all on the taxpayers (Snowball). So when a teacher (Napoleon) goes to the Board Meetings at verbally attacks school board members they disagree with, like opted out, Napoleon can say anything she wants, with no fear of loss of job, loss of pay, bad performance review, suspended, etc. Napoleon is allowed to character assignate anyone at the board, same with Union Representatives (Dogs) with no accountability or consequences, so why should Napoleon hold back against their boss (School Board Members, Conservative Parents and Children)? Call Snowflake every name in the book, character assignation until they get their way, is all acceptable and tolerated by the Board. Snowflake cant withdraw tax dollars to schools, does not have school choice, so they cant fight back against Napoleon. All they can do is remove their children from Napoleon, which 95% Snowballs cant afford to pay for religious schools plus automatic payment to public schools., paying twice or 3 times toward education. School Boards have already negotiated with the dogs that Napoleon cant be touched, hands off, for any reason, school board members cant defend themselves, Napoleon and the Dogs will punish them in the Acorn and Starr, who are on Napoleons side, to take down anyone who does not support Napoleon and the Dogs. The Acorn and the Star are the pack of dogs supporting their close friend dogs in the unions. You cant have a School Board that supports Napoleon and the Dogs, to scare off Snowflakes, where they have all the power, Snowflakes just pay taxes, and get in the back of the bus, stay silent, accept what is for their children’s indoctrination, not education. The servants must continue to serve the Master, Napoleon and the Dogs rule here at CVUSD, as long as the Board, in negotiations, supports Napoleon and the Dogs, hands off the employees, they run this show.

    Reply

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