Below...from Sternberg's Mind Matter. If you're an educator and you want to respond to this post, I welcome you to do so on the other blog. Of course, you're also free to comment here as well.
I am fascinated by the response people are having to the president’s announcement that he will make available a ‘pep’ talk on education this coming Tuesday. The concern by some individuals that this is an attempt to further a partisan agenda by attempting to indoctrinate students is a glimmer of a much larger issue —the politicization of education in America, from the left and from the right.
It’s inevitable, I suppose. Teachers have tremendous influence on students, but according to a report done not so long ago, teachers are usually third or fourth in the ranking of influence on students.
The primary influence is, of course, the family. Next, peers (although many studies have shown that as students approach adolescence that the family influence is overshadowed by peer influence). Behind family and peers? Teachers and the clergy come in a close third and fourth, but lag well behind the first and second.
So, given the role of the teacher, it’s not surprising we often become the straw man.
Still, let’s go back to the original issue—the presidential address that has several on the right crying foul. Maybe these individuals should stop and think: who is going to have more influence on their children–the wordy man on TV, whom they will listen to for less than an hour as they fidget in their seats, or the teacher who has them day after day after day?
And even then, the teacher will come in a weak third or fourth. Parents should have little concern for any furtherance of any agenda. It’s been shown that children tend to take on the politics of their parents.
Now, if Obama ever develops a really cool video game, then the right might have cause for concern.