Bonnie Snyder (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education) Guest-Blogging About “Undoctrinate” …

I’m delighted to announce that FIRE’s Bonnie Snyder will be guest blogging this week on this topic. new book; here is an excerpt from

The purpose of is to expose and solve the growing problem of biased teaching and indoctrination in K12 classrooms.

Indoctrination is antithetical to education. When a school, teacher or class promotes an “orthodoxy” (a privileged point of view), students perceive that only certain opinions are welcome or permitted. This creates a “cooling effect” which bypasses the thinking process. Students quickly learn to self-censor, stop asking questions or think independently, and simply memorize expected answers in order to please the grader. Biased teaching and orthodoxy leads to many long-term societal problems, such as decreased critical thinking ability and impaired reasoning, decreased creativity, and decreased support for free speech. and a misunderstanding of established civic norms, at the college level and in society.

Our goal is to “de-teach” our schools – that is, to restore solid intellectual diversity, open inquiry, reasoned dialectics, rigor, credibility, ideological curiosity and inclusiveness, and respect for our shared heritage and enlightenment traditions. These traditions include humility as to the limits of one’s own knowledge and understanding, participation in the continued and shared search for “truth” (veritas) and tolerance of dissenting, minority or unorthodox opinions.

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