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Letter: We Should be Alarmed about Regents

In a letter, one Lubavitch parent writes of his alarm at the content included in the Regents curriculum, lamenting its use and is concerned over its indoctrination in its subjects such as history and evolution.

by Berel

The Regents curriculum is increasingly evil.

Right, Evil.

It’s repetitive and message focused, a process normally associated with what we call brain washing. Ecology and Biology are focused on ingraining kids with the idea of Earth’s ‘maximum carrying capacity’ and the moral imperative not to have many if any children rachmana litzlan. Everything soft is minority focused. So called Transgender-ism is a thing. (We really need to do a serious internal study of the various components; this is what I’ve gathered from students being Mesiach Lefi Tumam.)

A new history curriculum is in the works and may be complete by 2019, it’s so much a revolution over the past curriculum that in the interim 2018, while the new was being worked on but before it’s actually available, NY simply exempted the kids from studying Regents history altogether. Typically, you’d study the old one while the new one is being worked out–why do we need a new History curriculum, again?– but in this case the ‘new’ history cancels the old, and I think we can assume we won’t like what’s in it.

Read that paragraph again and think about it for a moment.

There is a reason why the popular ‘right’ way to think is increasingly leftward and it isn’t because the ‘Youth’ and Hollywood and the NBA/NFL/MLB and the Music industry are collectively more intelligent or more morally upstanding than the rest of us (spit), but because the education system has long been corrupted and turned into a vehicle to infuse the next generations with leftist religious dogma. And all the American cultural icons have converted.

Trust me, the only reason we aren’t up in arms about what our kids are learning for Regents is because the schools are like that frog that gets put in a bath where the heat rises so slowly that that frog doesn’t realize what’s happening before being incapacitated, and parents don’t know enough about this to be any more alarmed than when all we were dealing with was a little evolution garbage.

If you still think the major issue with the curriculum is ‘evolution’ you are in for a major surprise r’l.

This isn’t just about al taharas hakoidish anymore (though that’s certainly the root and core of the issue) it’s that we are willingly exposing and encouraging our children to study and to test for competence in leftist religious doctrine. Slowly but surely, and we are seeing this now already, these insane ideas will gain currency in our midst, because even if the kids don’t agree with them, the terms and ideas become normalized.

There’s a world of distance between an idea that people believe in but we do not, and the stark raving, barking at the moon madness that constitute the standard leftist canon of thought that’s being normalized among our youth through the curriculum.

66 Comments

  • 2. as far as history and english wrote:

    I teach for both the global history regent and the English one so I feel confident to give my two cents. if you want to see a sample of this year’s history regent get a copy of Barron’s regents global history 6th edition (blue book) – the advantages is that they seem to be deleting questions about the other “religions” and adding current events up to 2018. the focus is correctly in knowing what is going on now. the disadvantage is that the board of education does like to equivicate the shoah with every other genocide in history at best. at worst to trivialize it as just part of war. in addition they need to be educated as to the true history of Eretz Yisroel. The gazans do not have a history of a water shortage because they don’t have a history.

    the English exam seems to be very tame by secular standards. it hasn’t changed and you can get copies on line with the answers to see for yourself. being able to read and process information is extremely important.

    instead of fighting city hall – I would recommend veteran teachers put out YouTube regents videos to help people study for them. but through seeing limudei chol through our lenses not theirs.

    Reply
    • 3. Berel wrote:

      Very helpful comment, but the change is more ominous than you realize. While before the focus was on relatively ancient history that had little obvious and direct influence on the student’s world outlook and political preferences, the focus now shifts to the very recent historical narrative framing much of our perception of current events. This is about Goodthink.

      Even the examples you mention with equanimity are pernicious, intentional lies or major re-imaginings of events that directly bear on the generation’s world outlook.

      I will look into that book, but the fox is in the coup and we are subjecting our children to overt indoctrination.

      As for veteran teachers filtering and packaging the information, unfortunately, the teachers in our system who are responsible for the subjects are about a chapter ahead of the students on the material, and that isn’t soon changing as we can barely keep the lights on in the moisdois as it is.

      A thought experiment: Is there anything at all that the Government might put in there that would push us to where we decided that we just couldn’t do it anymore, or will we just teach our kids whatever’s required because …

  • 4. no one special wrote:

    “I teach for both the global history regent and the English….”
    Is “equivicate” an English word?

    Reply
    • 5. #16 wrote:

      She said she’s an english teacher, and she meant it.
      e·quiv·o·cate
      əˈkwivəˌkāt/Submit
      verb
      use ambiguous language so as to conceal the truth or avoid committing oneself.
      ““Not that we are aware of,” she equivocated”
      synonyms: prevaricate, be evasive, be noncommittal, be vague, be ambiguous, dodge the question, beat around the bush, hedge; More

  • 7. Yankel wrote:

    Are you really a teacher? I ask this because you not only misspelled “equivocate” but you also used it incorrectly. It does not mean to consider two things as being equal.

    Reply
    • 8. Berel wrote:

      She meant equate, it happens to the best writers. I can’t believe the heat the typo is getting here.

  • 9. As a student wrote:

    As a student I agree with the writer. Many of the subjects are not for a from girl to learn or they r not taught with the right sensitivity.
    In the regent curriculum it has many ideas that are against the Torah such as that I need to study about other religions and many other things that are against the Torah.
    I also believe that the pressure that the teachers and principles put in the students about the regent is not correct and not on our Lubavitch standards.
    Yes, the Rebbe did allow beis rivkah to teach secular subjects but I do not believe that the rebbe will be happy to see how low we came since then.
    I wish there is a possibility for change, growth, and understanding.
    Thank you for understanding!

    Reply
  • 10. Confused wrote:

    I’m a 17 year old student in a high school in crown heights and I since I entered high school I am very confused.
    What we learn in the morning is correct and beuatiful but then I learn that it’s incorrect and the ‘regents’ way is correct.

    I wish it wasn’t like that

    Reply
    • 11. Crown Heights Resident since 1981 wrote:

      Well you have to options
      1 – Skip the Evolution questions & hopefully you’ll have enough points to pass the regent anyways.
      2- If you learn something about evolution (for the regents) you’ll be better prepared to answer questions about it on Mivzoim or Shlichus

  • 12. Pressure wrote:

    I am very disappointed that my daughter has her prioritize wrong
    Her English subjects always come first.
    I am upset at the schools for not prioritizing

    I am an out-of-towner and we always Knew and where taught that chumash and Halacha come before chemistry

    Reply
    • 13. the right way wrote:

      when ever we learned about ideas that go against torah we were always told its false and that the torah is the truth

    • 15. Amused Observer wrote:

      As it should. Evolution is perhaps the single most fundamental concept of biological science.

    • 16. Berel wrote:

      No it’s not, at least insofar that anybody will pay you for what you know about Science. You’re paid for knowing the ‘What,’ Evolution is a theoretical stab at the ‘Why.’

    • 17. A teacher wrote:

      It’s important as a frum Yid to know how to handle what one will come across. I took the regents years ago and am now a parent of kids that age. I knew, that not to go against our principles and beliefs, that I’d skip the evolution questions and take the loss of points because I can’t write what I don’t believe is true.

  • 19. McMillan wrote:

    “Transgerder-ism” isnt in the regents.

    And also evolution is real. So don’t deprive people of knowledge just because you don’t like it.

    Reply
  • 21. really now wrote:

    Please #3, YOU are equivocating..big deal, never made a spelling mistake in your life? this was a logical and well-thought out answer to problem stated above..

    Reply
  • 22. To: Not Being Frum wrote:

    Explain your problem, issue, concern.

    e·quiv·o·cate
    əˈkwivəˌkāt/Submit
    verb
    use ambiguous language so as to conceal the truth or avoid committing oneself.
    ““Not that we are aware of,” she equivocated”
    synonyms: prevaricate, be evasive, be noncommittal, be vague, be ambiguous, dodge the question, beat around the bush, hedge; vacillate, shilly-shally, waver; temporize, hesitate, stall, hem and haw; informal pussyfoot around, sit on the fence; rare tergiversate
    “you have equivocated too often in the past”

    Reply
  • 23. To no one special wrote:

    equivocate | Definition of equivocate in English by Oxford Dictionaries

    Definition of equivocate – use ambiguous language so as to conceal the truth or avoid committing oneself.

    Reply
    • 25. what? wrote:

      if you have auto correct, why did it not correct your mistake.
      plus, even if you spelled it correctly, you used the wrong word. you were looking for “equate”.

  • 29. Feeding One's Family wrote:

    Standardized testing requires proficiency in all subjects including knowledge of the THEORY of evolution and science. Those who do not participate will lose the opportunity to feed large families without public assistance. It’s beautiful to have a community of Rabbis, but there are only so many jobs in real estate and religious institutions/stores. I don’t see many Chasidic doctors or Chasidic students winning math and science awards like the Asians and non Chasidic Jews do.

    Unless someone starts building kibbutz like systems upstate on cheap land, I anticipate an increasingly overcrowded Crown Heights with a low skilled work force with minimal educational degrees where entire families live in single bedrooms rather than homes of their own.

    Reply
  • 30. A shame wrote:

    It’s a shame that your letter lacks grammar, punctuation and the coherence that would bring. Sounds like you could’ve used a better education.

    Reply
    • 31. Berel wrote:

      Grammar and punctuation are fine, though coherence is highly subjective, so I’ll grant you that, I suppose.

      Next time prefer ‘they would bring.’

  • 34. rivka wrote:

    The Rebbe was very against chol subjects, and for girls equally as for boys. He spoke many sichos on the subject. We can see the deterioration of many of our school systems and the confusion of our youth. Many problems stem from the kelipa that they learn in those secular courses. For a chabad school to promote regents is absolutely against chassidus.

    Reply
    • 35. A teacher wrote:

      “For a chabad school to promote regents is absolutely against chassidus.”
      I went to Bais Rivkah years ago before Gimmel Tammuz… the Rebbe was aware of what was being done in Bais Rivkah – they didn’t decide to do regents against the Rebbes directives. Your statement is very general and inaccurate.

  • 36. Baal teshuvah with a wall full of diplomas wrote:

    Regents are evil.
    So are all secular curriculi.
    But the regents…
    They are a getchke of NYS school system.
    I took em, and would NEVER let my sons or daughters take them.
    When I became from, I couldn’t believe they were taught and given in the Rebbe’s schools. *Shocked*
    I send to Oholei Torah and Beis Chaya Mushka, Al taharas hakodesh.
    Not perfect schools, but not this garbage for our innocents.

    Reply
  • 37. Beis Chaya Mushka fan wrote:

    I am a huge fan of beis chaya mushka.its an amazing school,especially the high-school whoever wants their children in this day and age with all the tumah to come out of high school at least a bit frum send them to beis chaya mushka. I recently spoke to a girl in bcm and she had such a rich knoledge in torah things and tge rebbys perspective on various topics. Don’t make a dumb decision based on chabad politics. Make it your choice meshichist and frum or livinv like a goy. I suggest you send your children there even their perspective on the rebbe is not tge same ad yours

    Reply
    • 38. excuse me... wrote:

      but just because someone learns maths, english, science, etc, doesnt mean theyre living or will live like a goy

  • 39. bais yaakov student wrote:

    When i attended bais yaakov, they also gave regents, but we BH had teachers who explained to us the fallacies of evolution, etc. we had whom to go to, to ask questions and learn what is emes and what is not..you cant shut off all knowledge of the world from teenagers. They need to know what the torah viwewpoint is, and what “THEY” say…just locking yourself up in a box is not an answer..But , you must have teachers and mashpiim who can guide you to choose right: uvacharta bachayim…

    Reply
    • 40. Berel wrote:

      The concern here is not the theory of evolution. That’s been in the curriculum forever. The summary, which I did not write, mentions it, but the letter implicitly dismisses it as a (the?) major concern.

    • 42. Amused Observer wrote:

      If your teachers could disprove evolution *as a scientific theory*, there’s a shiny Nobel Prize waiting for them. Why haven’t they collected it?

    • 43. Ezra wrote:

      Of course, because everyone is eager to see their sacred cows slaughtered, right?

  • 44. The kangeroo wrote:

    Regents are for the whole state or more. If they do not suit you for any reason, find your own solution.No point in insulting a fellow human for your own choice

    Reply
  • 45. the Rebbe on dinosaurs wrote:

    The Rebbe on Dinosaurs:

    The argument from the discovery of the fossils is by no means conclusive evidence of the great antiquity of the earth, for the following reasons:

    (a) In view of the unknown conditions which existed in prehistoric” times, conditions of atmospheric pressures, temperatures, radioactivity, unknown catalyzers, etc., etc. as already mentioned, conditions that is, which could have caused reactions and changes of an entirely different nature and tempo from those known under the present-day orderly processes of nature, one cannot exclude the possibility that dinosaurs existed 5722 years ago, and became fossilized under terrific natural cataclysms in the course of a few years rather than in millions of years; since we have no conceivable measurements or criteria of calculations under those unknown conditions.

    (b) Even assuming that the period of time which the Torah allows for the age of the world is definitely too short for fossilization (although I do not see how one can be so categorical), we can still readily accept the possibility that G‑d created ready fossils, bones or skeletons (for reasons best known to him), just as he could create ready living organisms, a complete man, and such ready products as oil, coal or diamonds, without any evolutionary process.

    As for the question, if it be true as above (b), why did G‑d have to create fossils in the first place? The answer is simple: We cannot know the reason why G‑d chose this manner of creation in preference to another, and whatever theory of creation is accepted, the question will remain unanswered. The question, Why create a fossil? is no more valid than the question, Why create an atom? Certainly, such a question cannot serve as a sound argument, much less as a logical basis, for the evolutionary theory.

    Reply
  • 47. Oh god help wrote:

    Listen Berel, your intentions are pure but ridiculous. There is nothing wrong with evolution, it is the basis of biology and a fact of life. Evolution isn’t synonymous with Darwinism, rather Darwinism is a theory within the framework of evolution. Regarding the two other issues you brought up (the rest of your post is just a senseless rant): gender dysphoria or as you called it, transgender-ism, is a real thing. You can disagree about how to deal with this disorder but it does exist. Yes minorities are finally getting equal rights in this country! What the heck is wrong with learning about that and civil rights issues. Finally, your post seems to basically dismiss the education system. I wish you had actually recieved such an education. Maybe then you’re article wouldn’t be written on 6th grade level. You literally have a paragraph consisting of one long run on sentence.

    Sincerely,
    A medical school student with an actual education.

    Reply
    • 49. More "tea" (from someone else, however) wrote:

      *your (not “you’re”)

      *run-on (not “run on” without the hyphen)

      *sixth-grade (as an adjective, should have a hyphen)

      *numerous punctuation issues as well, including missing question mark after “issues,” missing comma after “Yes” and numerous other such things

      *should be broken up into more than one [long!] paragraph

      *G-d help your future patients, if this is how you write with your “actual education”! I’d worry about a mistake due to your being so imprecise in your writing. I guess Medical School admissions departments have reached a new low in the standards of whom they offer medical school to!

    • 50. To the one w/ "actual education" wrote:

      Surely you, as an oh-so-educated person, are also aware of the following:

      You say that evolution – a THEORY, by the way – “is the basis of biology and a fact of life.” By definition, a THEORY is not a “fact.” (Look it up, if you need to.)

      But more importantly, please note that the science of biology has existed since about the fifth century: long before the theory of evolution was first put forth (nineteenth century), so evolution cannot be “the basis of biology.”

      A public school science teacher of many years’ standing told me recently something that, if I am not mistaken, the Lubavitcher Rebbe pointed out over the years and is still true: it has NEVER been proven that one species has EVER evolved into another species. That’s why “evolution” is a THEORY, not factual.

    • 54. REALLY? wrote:

      number one what he says is true
      and number two how did politics get involved?

  • 56. Moishe pipek wrote:

    One may not insult others in public.If you insult other you lost your share in ……….In all other matters tshuva is accepted but not in……..

    Reply
  • 57. CR wrote:

    The Gemara Chagiga (16a) states that looking into the past (pre-Creation) is possible, saying “מה דהוה הוה”, it actually happened. However, the example is given of a king who has a palace built on top of the old garbage dump. It would be a dishonor to the king to call the palace “the garbage dump.” Similarly, it is a dishonor to G-d to investigate what happened prior to this Creation, even though we know it existed.

    What happened before happened. It is not for us to investigate and examine it. But, similarly, it is not for us to militantly oppose those who do talk about it. And if they want a regurgitation of “fairy tales” as a rite of passage so be it.

    Reply
    • 58. YMSP wrote:

      Likutei Torah explains that all “previous worlds” are only spiritual and that physical creation started only close to 6000 years ago (spiritual shmitos and the shmita of gevura – physical – which the Rebbe points out (kdaas haRamban and halacha kmoisoi in ruchnius matters) stays in existence forever (with Hashem revealed in it with Moshiach and beyond that level).

      The 6000 year ago start is backed up by plenty of Youth Earth Creationist papers and is far more scientifically sound than those who put on blinders and refuse to read anything that goes against the current scientific/PLO/riskone’slifeforatree “mindset” ever put together.

  • 59. YMSP wrote:

    Anyone who thinks that the theory of evolution is real should simply read The Politically Incorrect Guide to Darwinism. There are gaping holes in the theory that Darwin himself admitted would discount the theory today (lack of transitional fossils – he chalked it up to very few fossils having been excavated – simply put, you can’t have tons of ape fossils, tons of human ones and nothing more than 10 deformed skulls supposedly in between).

    So evolution isn’t only against Torah. It’s also against simple logic. And yes, modern indoctrination is all about gently, and not so gently, persuading people to act like one did in Ancient Greece.

    Thank you Berel for once again pointing out the truth and thank you crownheights. info for posting the crucial truth as another site would never do.

    Reply
    • 60. Crown Heights Resident since 1981 wrote:

      If you learn something about evolution (for the regents) you’ll be better prepared to answer questions about it on Mivzoim or Shlichus.

    • 61. Not quite ... wrote:

      Common ancestry is not the same thing as evolution. The existence of evolution is not up for debate, it is a fact that has been observed in numerous species (as well as within cells in our own bodies). Feel free to argue against teaching common ancestry and the age of the universe as those can indeed be problematic for Torah believing Jews, but arguing against the existence of evolution makes as much sense as arguing about your own existence.

    • 62. YMSP wrote:

      The lack of transitional fossils disproves “evolution.” It has nothing to do with common ancestry. Stephen Jay Gould was forced to admit that this was a huge problem (but did not go further or dwell on this much, probably so as not to be attacked). Darwin admitted that this could be a problem, but said that future excavation would turn up the hundreds of thousands of fossils that would be needed. 150 years of digging proves our point. (When you can explain how 20 deformed/underwater/etc. skulls are the only supposed transitional fossils between tens of thousands of supposedly old ape fossils and billions of human ones, we can talk further. Same when you can logically (as opposed to convolutedly) explain how there are apes today and humans today, but nothing in between. Until then, the only logical question to ask on the issue is why so many people are bent beyond reason to defend a theory with no legs and that is all but disproven, although it is used as the lead reason to promote animal behavior among humans (vhi hanoisenes).

      Common ancestry would be a separate subject entirely, except that my friend R’ Yonasan Teleki (the force behind the kol korehs against “assisted” – usually coerced “suicide” – usually homicide) points out something interesting. The fact that we all stem from one person is what the Gemara uses to point out that one who saves one life is as if they had saved the entire world. So Teleki points out that it’s not surprising that the biggest proponents of evolution, aside from using it to promote living like animals, are also the biggest proponents of this cruel and false assisted suicide legislation, which even allows representatives of insurance companies to act as witnesses with regard to patient’s supposedly expressed wishes.

      That the poster who supports Darwinism was forced to nonsensically twist the subject to common ancestry when confronted with the simple lack of transitional fossils should show everyone what a made up house of cards the entire “theory” is.

    • 63. YMSP wrote:

      However, I don’t agree that this is needed or beneficial for shlichus. Many shluchim have enough trouble knowing the Torah position on societal matters (which often goes against commonly held harmful beliefs on the left and sometimes, if not often, on the right), let alone how to properly explain and defend these time tested positions. Shluchim need to be armed with Torah. Torah is also key to mekarev other Torah Jews to Chassidus and to the Rebbe. Anyone who works hard to understand Torah will not find it hard to learn enough to discount evolution later. It doesn’t take that much time to learn about it at all – and as one can even see on this thread, those who sycophantically defend evolutionary theory don’t usually know very much about it themselves.

  • 64. In my school wrote:

    they would say that this is the theory but the Torah says as such and this is what we believe, that the theory is grabage but we have to learn it for exams…
    -not a NY student

    Reply
  • 65. To #50 wrote:

    Oh boy, the “You say that evolution – a THEORY, by the way … By definition, a THEORY is not a fact. (Look it up, if you need to.)” fallacy. And, well, it’s just that, a fallacy.

    The word “theory” in science has a specific meaning, namely, “a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can incorporate facts, laws, inferences, and tested hypotheses.” In other words, theories are as close to fact as science allows (they are formed from hypotheses that have been subjected repeatedly to tests of evidence which attempt to disprove or falsify them).

    When you use the “it’s a theory, not a fact” argument you sound as uneducated as you apparently are.

    Reply
    • 66. YMSP wrote:

      Oh boy, if two scientific theories are diametric opposites are they both “facts” in your eyes?

      I’ve heard this bunk before from evolutionists. Fortunately they relegate it only to discussions on evolutionary theory, because if they tried to define most other scientific hypotheses as “fact,” the ludicrous nature of the argument would usually be self-evident.

      Scientific theory means only that the theory is based on some physical observation (such as similarities in human and – lhavdil – ape structure and commonalities in the DNA of all living creatures). This does not make it fact. Extrapolate the DNA argument slightly to include common cell structure and you may find yourself argument that we all must be descended from salt rocks, or at least from cinnamon sticks. The ape to human theory is all but disproven for reasons I’ve mentioned above.

      It’s understood that what passes for academia today is little more than a group that parrots lines with next to no thought and is oblivious to any sort of reasoning. It’s also well known that its greatest proteges are all people who don’t even know how to defend themselves from terror, even on the most basic level, let alone run a business. But when they make statements like “scientific theory is basically fact” they amaze even those like myself who are used to them with their utter lack of brilliance, to put it mildly……

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