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Is our children learning in Arizona?

23 March 2011

A letter read on the floor of the Arizona Senate from substitute eighth grade teacher Tony Hill included the following:

The teacher’s instructions were for the students to read a few pages and answer the questions regarding Mark Twain in their history textbook and to finish their final drafts to Senator Steve Gallardo thanking him for his position on Illegal Immigration rights. Their teacher apparently had showed them a video with Senator Steve Gallardo and Lou Dobbs. Most of the students came unprepared for class not possessing paper and pencil. I provided the students with paper and pencils only to have them wade-up the paper and throw it at each other along with their pencils.

The students’ final drafts that I read were basically the same. Most of them stated they were in the country illegally, White Americans are racist, and that they came here for a better life. I asked the class if America adopted Mexico immigration laws would Americans still be consider racist?

I didn’t know that schoolchildren were forced to watch “Lou Dobbs” — isn’t that cruel and unusual?

Aside from the fact that none of the school districts where Tony Hill claims to teach ever heard of him and none of them have any record of any substitute teacher by that name (or any variation of the name) and there’s nothing in Arizona’s 8th grade history textbooks about Mark Twain (nor, alas, in their English curriculum, though everyone should read Twain — one of the first books I read in Spanish was a translation of Tom Sawyer), I can’t see where the U.S. adoption of Mexican immigration laws would be “racist”.

When I got my “gringo card” there were some questions about my hair color and the shape of my chin and the thickness of my eyebrows (REALLY!), but nothing has ever been asked on any immigration form (or on the census form) about “race”.  I was out of Mexico for a few years, so don’t have quite enough residency to apply for citizenship, but other than residency it’s a matter of being able to answer four out of five (of a possible 100) questions about Mexican history and geography… and nothing about “race” (though I think there might be a question about Ana Gabriel Guevara, which has something to do with races).

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Mary O'Grady permalink
    25 March 2011 6:10 am

    How terrifying that this individual may be a teacher: of the seven sentences of his quoted here, I count precisely two with no errors in spelling or grammar.

    • BSColt permalink
      26 March 2011 3:51 pm

      I had hoped the title of this article was trying to prove a point regarding the quality of our education system here in the US. It seems I was wrong to hope such a thing. If this was written by a teacher, substitute or not, from Arizona then the answer to the title is no, not with teachers like these.

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