From my book 3D, page 149:
IN THE AUGUST 1978 ISSUE OF THE NATIONAL EDUCATOR BARBARA MORRIS, EDITOR OF The Bar- Morris Report and author of many books related to education including her most recent book, The Great American Con Game, reported on a speech given at the University of Illinois by Mary F. Berry, assistant secretary in the U.S. Office of Education (1977), regarding Chinese education. The following excerpts from Morris’s report are too important to leave out of this book:
Indeed, what does the U.S.A. stand to learn? Let’s take a look.
Red China has eliminated testing and grades. The U.S. is rapidly going the same route. Testing is being downgraded and scoffed at, and grades, where they do exist are just about meaningless.
For the Red Chinese, according to Ms. Berry, truth is a relative concept. In the U.S. schools students are taught the same thing in “values clarification.” It’s called situation ethics and it means it’s okay to lie or cheat or steal or kill when it suits your purpose.
In Red China, according to Ms. Berry, education must serve the masses. Ditto the U.S. Only the semantics are different here. In the U.S. education is not designed for the benefit of individuals, but for society. “Society” or “masses”—what’s the difference?
In Red China, according to Ms. Berry, education must be combined with productive labor and starts at six years of age, with children working at least one hour a day producing voice boxes for dolls. At the middle school level, children make auto parts as part of the school day. We are not at this low level, but Secretary Berry frankly admits, “We will draw on the Chinese model….” We are fast approaching the Chinese model. We have work/study programs and the U.S. Office of Education is working on development of Lifelong Learning programs—another Chinese import. Such programs will enable people to work and study their entire lives for the benefit of the state.
Ms. Berry admitted U.S. Lifelong Learning programs are indeed drawn on the Chinese experience, that such programs are expected to meet “needs for intellectual fulfillment and social growth. It is here that the Chinese have set the pattern for the world to follow, and it is here that American higher education may have its last, best opportunity for growth.”
Secretary Berry lamented that the U.S. is only slowly moving into Lifelong Learning, but that “The community college system with its nonconventional enrollment, is one harbinger of change. The traditional extension program is another…. But we have to go beyond them and bring four year institutions and secondary institutions, as well as private instructional facilities into the Lifelong Learning movement.”
Ms. Berry is not talking about the future when she recommends radical proposals for U.S. education. A meeting of the National Council for the Social Studies, held in Cincinnati last November, featured several presentations on Communist Chinese education as a model for U.S. education. In one such presentation, teachers learned how the Red Chinese educational system “is related to achievement of national goals and citizenship preparation… how cultural activities and recreational pastimes provide a vehicle for transmitting new social values.” Does this help you understand why U.S. schools usually list “worthy use of leisure” or “citizenship education” as a goal of education?
[Ed. Note: Americans, involved in what would seem to be the worthy goal of implementing character, citizenship, or civic education in the government schools or in community groups, or in seeking “common ground” with groups who hold differing views on political, social, and religious issues, should think more than twice before becoming involved in this dangerous dialogue. The reason the dialogue is dangerous is evident when one studies the track record of nations whose citizens have allowed their governments to define morality or good citizenship; i.e., Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union and Red China, to name just a few.]