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Talk:Essay:Draft Conservapedia Application to Become SES Provider

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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

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

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)