Talk:Essay:Draft Conservapedia Application to Become SES Provider

From Conservapedia
Jump to: navigation, search

How can we use Conservapedia materials at all, when the application says masterials should be secular, neutral, and non-ideological? And do you want suggestions just written in under each heading?

PS it looks like we should concentrate on Section D (do we have assessment programs?) and B )beef up citations in the lectures). AddisonDM 21:35, 11 February 2009 (EST)

Good catch about the requirement that materials be "secular, neutral and non-ideological." I think we meet that requirement better than public school textbooks currently used. I don't think they can ban someone simply for being conservative, although some liberals may try! The teaching materials themselves (i.e., the lectures and tests and homework) meet this test better than often-used textbooks.
Don't think the lectures need more "citations". It's the application that needs citations to research, as odd as that may sound.
Thanks for your good insights.--Andy Schlafly 22:13, 11 February 2009 (EST)
P.S. Current SES providers include The Archdiocese of Newark, The Diocese of Camden, The Diocese of Metuchen, The Diocese of Paterson, and The Diocese of Trenton. I don't think Conservapedia is any less secular, or any more ideological, than they are.--Andy Schlafly 22:25, 11 February 2009 (EST)

<edit conflict>
My impression is that the courses will have to align with the NJ state standards. Standards for early world history are here, and they continue here. Standards for US history are here and here. (Note that New Jersey history must be included.) Frankly, looking over these standards, there are some areas which might be problematic. Note also that the Social Studies Skills standards are to be integrated with the various subject courses. High school students are expected to do the following:

  1. Analyze how historical events shape the modern world.
  2. Formulate questions and hypotheses from multiple perspectives, using multiple sources.
  3. Gather, analyze, and reconcile information from primary and secondary sources to support or reject hypotheses.
  4. Examine source data within the historical, social, political, geographic, or economic context in which it was created, testing credibility and evaluating bias.
  5. Evaluate current issues, events, or themes and trace their evolution through historical periods.
  6. Apply problem-solving skills to national, state, or local issues and propose reasoned solutions.
  7. Analyze social, political, and cultural change and evaluate the impact of each on local, state, national, and international issues and events.
  8. Evaluate historical and contemporary communications to identify factual accuracy, soundness of evidence, and absence of bias and discuss strategies used by the government, political candidates, and the media to communicate with the public.

Hope this helps, --Hsmom 22:30, 11 February 2009 (EST)


When they say provide evidence of this or that, how do we do that? Letters of recommendation? I don't see there being citations online which report us comprehensively or favorably. Just another thought. AddisonDM 22:32, 11 February 2009 (EST)

I think we could cite to material covered in class. By "evidence" I think they mean detailed descriptions with meaningful data, such as how students did on standardized tests or where they went to college. I would include some of the data at User:Aschlafly.--Andy Schlafly 22:43, 11 February 2009 (EST)
See page 13, which explains the type of evidence needed for each type of thing. For example, to show that you have adequate liability insurance of at least $1 million, they want "a copy of adequate liability insurance", which I assume means some kind of statement from the insurance provider. They also need a business registration certificate, evidence of the alignment of the curriculum with state standards, documentation of instructor qualifications, tax returns, credit rating, and so forth. --Hsmom 23:01, 11 February 2009 (EST)
Oh, here is more about the insurance, on page 33 - they want "a copy of the policy cover page depicting amounts per incident and per occurrence". The whole thing needs to be in a 2" binder on white 3-hole punched paper, single-spaced in 12 point font. Mr. Aschlafly, are you sure you want to work with under-achieving public school kids? Were you able to go to the SES info sessions in January?--Hsmom 23:24, 11 February 2009 (EST)
It's charity. As I conservative, I support charity with my time and donations. (I would have gone to the information session had I known about it.)
Our application may be rejected. I might be better off if it is rejected! But I'm going to act in good faith for the deprived kids, and I hope and assume someone receiving the application will act in good faith also.--Andy Schlafly 23:47, 11 February 2009 (EST)

Status of project[edit]

Should this be accepted, would Conservapedia be liable to receive payment for this education, and if so, how does that alter the status of Conservapedia as a voluntary project - would new editors have to sign formal contracts and so on? Or would professional editors/educators be hired? DeniseM 03:14, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Assessment Programs[edit]

Section D, which ask for assessment programs: what do we have to answer for this one? It seems to me that most of the sections are just a matter of gathering data we already have, but this one (and sec. E) ask for stuff I'm not sure about. AddisonDM 12:48, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Not a ton of points at stake in D and E, but it seems like we would do well by emphasizing:
weekly homeworks
midterm and final exams
friendly competition
reports by email to students and parents
How's that?--Andy Schlafly 13:00, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Good for you for offering your time to at-risk kids! Some thoughts that may be helpful:

  • As for the weekly homeworks and exams, you'd have to beef up the assignments in US History to include the skills standards. For example, I don't remember any assignments where the students had to use multiple sources, and except for the cartoons, there wasn't much use of primary sources. (I didn't follow the course closely, so I may have overlooked these things.)
  • The emphasis for this program is on language, math, and science, whereas your work so far has been in social studies. You'll want to think about whether you plan to incorporate the focus areas into your existing social studies classes, such as having your students do essay writing, or whether you plan to develop new material in the desired areas.
  • The SAT has historically been considered an aptitude test rather than an achievement test (I'm not sure if this has been changed recently; I know there has been some talk about that), so it may not be a good tool to assess achievement. The SATII subject tests may be a better approach.
  • I'm not sure that looking at your previous student's results will be all the state needs, in that they are not remedial students. It will provide evidence of your ability to teach, but it doesn't speak to improving the performance of students who are significantly behind.
  • Section D is asking about evaluating a particular student's needs (in advance) and tailoring the work to address their weaknesses - you'll have to decide how you're going to do this, and you'll need to use research-supported strategies for both assessment and remediation.
  • The reports by email are OK, but remember that they asked how you would communicate with families who do not have access to computers, and/or the ability to use them.

Remember that this is a significantly different student/family population than you have dealt with in the past, and the challenges are quite different. Do you have in mind running a course very similar to what you've been offering, only in an after-school setting? Or are you looking more at a one-on-one tutoring situation? --Hsmom 14:08, 12 February 2009 (EST)

This is an interesting project, and towards that end Hsmom made some great comments above. The one thought that stood out is that the courses offered on CP to date do not seem to have been designed to help remedial students as much as they seem to be intended to serve general-population students. It might make sense, then, to approach the application process by creating alternate versions of these courses for a remedial audience, running one or two groups of students through them, and collecting the performance metrics the SES application is looking for. That may be a more effective means of attaining SES approval than trying to apply using the course-content and records available today.
On a more general note, is the scope of this application meant to apply to the specific online courses offered on CP, or to the entirety of Conservapedia project/site? Getting approval for the latter would be unlikely, I'd think, so I'm wondering if the online courses should be placed into a standalone namespace. --DinsdaleP 14:21, 12 February 2009 (EST)

Just a thought[edit]

Would it be possible to save paperwork and time by simply linking the authorities to the relevant pages on this site? I feel that this would give them a better idea of CP too(this would work in your favour, as some of the children whom you would teach under the SES may be from broken communities; it is possible that board overlooking your application will decide that the CP community may partly make up for this and help the children further, helping your application). ETrundel 14:40, 12 February 2009 (EST)


So is this along the lines of what you need? For the first subsection of Section C (that section looks like the most important):

In the Economics class offered by Conservapedia, the final exam was modeled after the CLEP exam. A large number of students achieved college-level passing marks. All students (mention how many?) who took the actual CLEP exam based on the course passed and earned college credit. Ten students in the American History class scored over 600 on the SAT II US History exam, including one perfect score of 800. (one more set of examples?) AddisonDM 18:05, 12 February 2009 (EST)

And for subsection 4: Student attendance has been nearly constant in past Conservapedia classes. Many students progressively improved in their performances on exams and homework as the classes went on. (Quotes or testimonials) (College acceptance info) AddisonDM 13:06, 13 February 2009 (EST)

Good suggestions. I'll take a look at some of the aggregate data.--Andy Schlafly 23:26, 16 February 2009 (EST)
Don't forget to include the total number of students in your data. For example, looking at the 06/07 scores, a 600 on the SAT II US History exam is the 46th percentile. To get a sense of whether ten students scoring above 600 is a good thing, the reviewer will want to know the total number of students taking the exam. You might also want to mention how many students scored in the top quartile (above 700), and the bottom quartile (below 520). (I'd provide quartile or percentile information rather than, or in addition to, a raw score.) You'll also want to provide a sense of what kind of students you've been working with - how many were remedial students, average students, and high achievers before they began your class - to show that your results were, ideally, higher than expected. Remember they want to see how you have improved the student's academic achievement. This is an ambitious project and I'm impressed you're taking it on. Do you plan on doing one-on-one tutoring, or offering after-school remedial classes, or just letting the remedial kids take your regular classes? Either way, you've got a lot of work to do - the standards compliance part alone is going to be a challenge, let alone the rest of the application - good luck! --Hsmom 17 February 2009
By the way, section B DOES seem to demand citations in the educational materials:

Key instructional practices and major program elements must be (1) high quality, (2) based on research (citations required), and (3) specifically designed to increase student academic achievement. This could mean our materials would need some improvement. AddisonDM 20:49, 17 February 2009 (EST)

Sections A and C look the most important. I don't know anything that they ask for, however. AddisonDM 20:50, 17 February 2009 (EST)
I'll work on those here now. Thanks.--Andy Schlafly 21:54, 17 February 2009 (EST)
If you didn't see my email, why don't you ask for testimonials by email from all our homeschoolers? AddisonDM 13:49, 18 February 2009 (EST)\
I'm thinking another citation for sec. B. One is not enough.

Under the first answer in sec. C, you say "best university in New Jersey." Should probably name it.

Under answer two for sec. C, where we describe homework completion, also mention our midterm exam and perhaps the average homework scores themselves, which were very good. AddisonDM 13:58, 18 February 2009 (EST)

Sec. D: I don't know anything about that. Should we develop our own diagnostic test or something, or can we use public school evaluations? As for Individual Student Plan to track individual students, do we have to develop that too? AddisonDM 14:08, 18 February 2009 (EST)

I'll get too many testimonials if I ask everyone! Another citation for Section B would be nice. I'll change "best university" to "a leading university." Thanks.
Don't know about Section D. We're not going to test anyone in the next few days, when this has to be wrapped up. Suggest what you think is best.--Andy Schlafly 14:10, 18 February 2009 (EST)
The only obvious option available is to use the tests from the last course and compare the mid-term and final exams to show progress and measurement of progress. Is the deadline really that soon? ETrundel 14:25, 18 February 2009 (EST)
Good idea. That works. The deadline is relatively soon. I suppose we could create a new test somewhat different than the midterm and finals, but I don't know if that's necessary. AddisonDM 14:41, 18 February 2009 (EST)

Answer 1 sec. E: Student progress can be reported to parents and families through returned homework asignments and tests (either in person or over the internet), as well as through communication with individual parents and families as necessary, including email and phone communication and in-person meetings.

How's that? I posted it already, of course to be improved as needed. AddisonDM 14:20, 18 February 2009 (EST)

Our info for section G should be substantially beefed up. Evacuation plans? Or is everything covered already because we're using school facilities? And I suppose you would certainly need fingerprinting is necessary. AddisonDM 14:52, 18 February 2009 (EST)

We also have to look into how our lectures align with the standards, which are linked to at the top of the page. As part of that, my guess is that creationist content in the world history lec. 1 would not be considered acceptable. AddisonDM 14:55, 18 February 2009 (EST)

The lectures are factual so I don't see a problem there, unless there is something in the state standards that says that a teacher must deny facts! Please feel free to check the state standards.
As to fingerprinting of employees, are you saying it is required? That's an expensive hassle.--Andy Schlafly 15:42, 18 February 2009 (EST)
I don't know for sure about fingerprinting. However, it seems to be a standard procedure for hiring positions like this. I know at our church sunday school teachers get fingerprinted. By the way, how many employees are we going to have, anyway? AddisonDM 19:15, 18 February 2009 (EST)

Section A[edit]

2. They ask for a clear, demonstrable link between the academic program provided and the regular school day. Now there are fifteen points at stake on the answer provided here, so I think it's important to emphasize that a program that increases test scores and academic proficiency is complementary to any regular program (obviously not in those words). Particularly, familiarity with a subject naturally increases a student's ability to cope with any manner of course on the same subject. Is it safe to assume that by looking into what the state standards comprise it can be deduced how the equitable Conservapedia programs can be complementary? Joe B 17:50, 18 February 2009 (EST)

Yes, please proceed and edit the content page as you think best. Improving history and government test scores seems like the best fit for us.--Andy Schlafly 18:02, 18 February 2009 (EST)
I'll edit the content now based on what I read regarding the CCCS. The problem is the CCCS is really specific in some places, yet entirely vague in others.--Joe B 18:53, 20 February 2009 (EST)

Heartfelt Thanks[edit]

A heartfelt thanks to all who had suggestions and insights concerning our SES Provider Application, which is complete and will be copied and sent Wednesday.

I would post our entire completed application publicly if there were not so much liberal vandalism on the internet. Maybe in five years there will be less liberal vandalism and more public posting will be possible. With more movement away from liberal ideology and less enabling of moronic and liberal vandalism, that may become possible.

Regardless, a heartfelt thanks again.--Andy Schlafly 18:55, 24 February 2009 (EST)