she explained. “They fear retaliation.”rnParents need to remember that the burdenrnof proof rests not with them butrnwith educrats who want to force this radicalrnchange on education. Ms. Luksikrnadvises parent-lobbyists to ask their foes,rn”You’re trying to mandate something.rnYou should have to support it. Where isrnthe research base? What happenedrnwhen this was tried?”rnThose are particularly deadly questionsrnfor OBE proponents. The truth isrnthat they have no data to show that OBErnworks; what they seek is entirely experimental.rnWhich makes it all the morernmysterious why supposedly sound-thinkingrnbusiness people would hop on thisrnbandwagon. There is, in fact, substantialrnevidence that OBE costs a bundle andrnproduces negative outcomes—at leastrnaccording to traditional measures ofrnlearning. A study by the WhartonrnSchool of Business calculated a $16.5rnmillion added cost for OBE in just sixrnPennsylvania school districts. The JohnsrnHopkins study cited eadier noted thatrngroup mastery had a “Robin Hood effect”rnon time allocation—robbing time,rnthat is, from smart students, who werernforced to wait for slower classmates.rnChicago became one of the first OBErnoutposts when Mastery Learning wasrnmandated for all of its 500 elementaryrnschools in the 1970’s. Children whornwere tested after ten years under thisrnmethodology scored miserably—at thern25th percentile—on a .standardized readingrntest. Scores in several schools were atrnthe 10th percentile, a mark that couldrnhave been obtained by guessing at everyrnquestion. A group of black parents suedrneducrats for “malpractice,” charging thatrntheir children’s school had been turnedrninto a “factory of failure.” Eventuallyrnthe cit’ school system, by then bankrupt,rndropped OBE. In Arkansas, wherernschool “reforms” were put in place byrncurrent national health-care czarinarnI hllary Clinton, achievement scores havernalso tumbled after four years of MasteryrnLearning.rnThe culminating outrage is the newrnperformance-based testing that is comingrnon line as a companion to OBE. It isrna truism that curriculum drives testingrnand testing drives curriculum. SincernOBE curricula trade heavily in attitudes,rntesting must too. Essentially, becausernthe curriculum is affective instead of academic,rnthe testing is psychological.rnI low this works out in practice wasrndiscovered several years ago by AnitarnHoge, a parent who lives in West Alexander,rnnear Pittsburgh. Mrs. Hoge’s determinedrnquest for candor by state andrnfederal educrats as to the extent of attitudinalrntesting—the results being storedrnin Big Brotherish data banks—is chronicledrnin Educating for the New World Orderrn(1991) by Bevedy K. Eakman, a respectedrnWashington writer.rnMrs. Hoge’s interest was piqued whenrnher three children started bringing nightmaresrnhome from school. In particular,rnher usually happy ninth-grader, Garrett,rnJr., had turned morose. Eventually shernfound that Garrett and his classmatesrnwere being subjected to “affective-ed”rnclasses featuring lurid films about environmentalrnpillage by developers, trips torna local cemetery, essay assignments inrnwhich students wrote their own obituaries,rnand exercises in values clarification.rnThe latter featured a lifeboat dilemma,rn”Who Shall Populate the Planet?” (Onlyrnthree can live; several others must die.rnStudents select whom to save.) Throughrnpersistent inquiry, Mrs. Hoge found thatrnthese classes were intended to improvernscores on something called the EducationalrnQuality Assessment, administeredrnby the state education department.rnIn some brilliant sleuthing, AnitarnHoge traced the origins of such behavioralrnmanipulation back to LBJ’s ESEArnand the network of regional educationrnlaboratories it spawned. Her protests resultedrnin a four-year federal investigationrnthat ended in 1989 with a findingrnthat the EQA was federally aided psychologicalrntesting and curriculum shapingrnof a kind precluded by the 1978 Protectionrnof Pupil Rights Amendmentrnsponsored by Senator Orrin Hatch.rnBut only the words have changed. Allrnthe invasive probing and adjusting of students’rnattitudes, all the psycho-behavioralrntesting, in Pennsylvania and acrossrnthe country, will now be done under thernguise of benign “learning outcomes.” Ifrnenough parents catch on, perhaps therernwill be a counterrevolution that will reclaimrneducation for local communities.rnIf apathy reigns, however, so will the totalitarians,rnbecause all of this data—rnkeyed to students’ Social Security numbersrn—will go into a federal data bank,rnwhich will constitute a ripe source of informationrnfor those who wish to manipulaternpeople on a grand scale.rnRobert G. Holland is a columnist andrnthe op-ed editor for the RichmondrnTimes-Dispatch.rnThe Real Target ofrnPublic Schoolsrnby Betsy ClarkernLast school year, my son—who was arnfourth grader at a public school—rncame home with a red piece of paperrnentitled “Family Call to Action.” Thernletter on the front, preprinted by a corporationrnbut signed by his teacher, informedrnme that my son would be joiningrnthe Target Stores and Hanes Corporationrn”Kids for Saving Earth” (KSE) Club, anrn”Earth Study and Reward Program” designedrnto teach students various earthsavingrn—or rather Earth-saving, becausernTarget always begins the word earth withrna capital “E”—lessons. Target Stores hadrndevised the environmental curriculum,rnaccording to the red sheet, and would bernproviding rewards for successful completionrnof various environmentally friendlyrnprojects. This program would be integratedrninto the regular academic day. Itrnwas not being offered as an optionalrnafter-school club.rnReward number one would be arnTarget-plastered T-shirt, which the classrnhad already agreed to wear every Friday,rnand a soft drink (both of which had to bernretrieved at Target). There was only onernprerequisite; the student and his entirernfamily had to sign the pledge on the backrnof the letter.rnThe stakes were described as high.rn”Our family will work to make ourrnhousehold friendly to the environment,”rnthe introduction to the pledge began.rn”We are responsible for the future of thernEarth.” Then came the Orwellian part:rnOur family will:rn1. Read the KSE promise together as arnfamily and mean it.rn2. Recycle everything we can.rn3. Reduce the amount of water we usernas much as possible. (Hint: Turn offrnfaucets when you’re not using thernwater.)rn4. Rideshare, bike, or walk wheneverrnpos.sible to cut down on air pollution.rn5. Protect native plants and animals inrnour yard and neighborhood. (It’srnOK to pull the weeds!)rn6. Thank others when they take actionrnto protect the Earth. . ..rnTarget then trusted the oath-taker to addrnSEPTEMBER 1993/49rnrnrn