John Locke Update / Research Newsletter (Archive)

“Speaking Out Against a State Empire”

posted on in Education

The traditional calendar school year is just around the corner. I would like to wish all home, public, and private school teachers good luck.

Bulletin Board

I would like to invite all readers to submit announcements, as well as their personal insights, anecdotes, concerns, and observations about the state of education in North Carolina. I will publish selected submissions in future editions of the newsletter. Anonymity will be honored. For additional information or to send a submission, e-mail Terry at [email protected].

St. Catherine of Siena in Wake Forest will host The First Annual Catholic Education Conference on Oct. 29-30, 2010. The conference agenda and registration information is available at

The E.A. Morris Fellowship for Emerging Leaders is now accepting applications for the 2010-11 class.  Applicants must be between the ages of 25 and 40, reside in North Carolina, and commit to a yearlong program of activities designed to examine, develop, and enhance their leadership skills. There is no cost to individuals accepted into the program. For additional information, please visit the E.A. Morris website at

Teachers and administrators — now is the time to remove all of those summer party photos from your Facebook page. After you have completed that task, join the John Locke Foundation at

Are you kidding me?

In a letter published in The News & Observer, Christopher Lyerly, an Enloe High School math teacher from Raleigh, argues that calling charter schools "public" is laughable. Mr. Lyerly asks, "Can just anyone go there?"

I agree with Mr. Lyerly that the answer is NO. Because of enrollment restrictions and the 100-school cap, the state artificially limits the number of students that may attend a charter school. Although Mr. Lyerly contends otherwise, charter schools are not permitted to deny a seat to any student based on income, educational needs, or distance from the school. For example, during the 2008-09 school year, nearly 4,000 charter school students were served by exceptional children programs.

Perhaps a better question is "can just anyone" attend Enloe High School? Why not?

Facts and Stats

75.2% — District school performance composite (average) on 2009-10 state tests

79.6% — Charter school performance composite (average) on 2009-10 state tests

Note: Performance Composite is the percentage of all student test scores in a school that are at or above proficient (Achievement Level III). Averages do not include district and charter schools classified as "Alternative" by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction. Averages do not include schools without a performance composite.


For years, the public school system has said that the more money they have the better job they can do. The past student performance scores have shown that this has not worked well. The solution in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools wasn’t more money; it was parents with the help of a judge to force teachers and staff to do their jobs. To me the latest report card showed the problem was slothfulness. I believe other problems in our statewide educational system are complacency and our children have become a product for profit. … People are ask[ed] to speak out, well I have experienced in the past that, "speaking out" against a state empire such as our beloved educational system or a powerful politician has consequences. The first time I spoke out, I enjoyed a tax audit and the last time, a visit from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration within two weeks. Just a coincidence, I’m told, with a smile.

Scared and Hiding from Those Who Govern Me
Trying to Hide to Survive in what

As a retired educator of forty years, I have followed with concern North Carolina’s competition in Race To The Top, as well as its interest in the National Common Core Standards. My feeling is that North Carolina is making a huge mistake in attempting to acquire funds from Race To The Top, and in adopting any form of the National Common Core Standards for use in grades K-12.

Richard H. Monroe
Whispering Pines, N.C.

Education Acronym of the Week

CANG: Comprehensive Assessment: Next Generation (Source: Acronyms Frequently Used in Academic Services at NCDPI)

Star Trek Acronym of the Week

TNG: Star Trek: The Next Generation

Quote of the Week I

"Education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another."
— G. K. Chesterton
Illustrated London News

July 5, 1924

Quote of the Week II

"The purpose of Compulsory Education is to deprive the common people of their commonsense."
— G. K. Chesterton
Illustrated London News

September 7, 1929

Dr. Stoops is the director of the Center for Effective Education. Before joining the Locke Foundation in 2005, he worked as the program assistant for the Child Welfare Education Programs at the University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work. He… ...

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