THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL
received from Adam via Email, author unknown
This principal really nailed this one. Too bad we don't have more of them.
Do take the time to read this.....it would really change our country if all schools were run like this. If every high-school principal gave this speech at the beginning of the next school year, America would be a better place.
To the students and faculty of our high school:
I am your new principal, and honored to be so. There is no
greater calling than to teach young people.
I would like to apprise you of some important changes coming to
our school. I am making these changes because I am convinced that most
of the ideas that have dominated public education in America have worked
against you, against your teachers, and against our country.
First, this school will no longer honor race or ethnicity. I
could not care less if your racial makeup is black, brown, red, yellow,
or white. I could not care less if your origins are African, Latin
American, Asian, or European, or if your ancestors arrived here on the
Mayflower or on slave ships.
The only identity I care about, the only one this school will
recognize, is your individual identity - your character, your
scholarship, your humanity. And the only national identity this school
will care about is American. This is an American public school, and
American public schools were created to make better Americans.
If you wish to affirm an ethnic, racial, or religious identity
through school, you will have to go elsewhere. We will end all
ethnicity-, race-, and non-American-nationality-based celebrations. They
undermine the motto of America, one of its three central values - e
pluribus unum, "from many, one." And this school will be guided by
That includes all after-school clubs. I will not authorize clubs
that divide students based on any identities. This includes race,
language, religion, sexual orientation, or whatever else may become in
vogue in a society divided by political correctness.
Your clubs will be based on interests and passions, not blood,
ethnic, racial, or other physically defined ties. Those clubs just
cultivate narcissism - an unhealthy preoccupation with the self - while
the purpose of education is to get you to think beyond yourself. So we
will have clubs that transport you to the wonders and glories of art,
music, astronomy, languages you do not already speak, carpentry, and
more. If the only extracurricular activities you can imagine being
interested in are those based on ethnic or racial or sexual identity,
that means that little outside of yourself really interests you.
Second, I am uninterested in whether English is your native
language. My only interest in terms of language is that you leave this
school speaking and writing English as fluently as possible. The English
language has united America's citizens for more than 200 years, and it
will unite us at this school. It is one of the indispensible reasons
this country of immigrants has always come to be one country. And if you
leave this school without excellent English-language skills, I will have
been remiss in my duty to ensure that you are prepared to compete
successfully in the American job market. We will learn other languages
here - it is deplorable that most Americans only speak English - but if
you want classes taught in your native language rather than in English,
this is not your school.
Third, because I regard learning as a sacred endeavor,
everything in this school will reflect learning's elevated status. This
means, among other things, that you and your teachers will dress
accordingly. Many people in our society dress more formally for a meal
at a nice restaurant than they do for church or school. These people
have their priorities backwards. Therefore, there will be a formal dress
code at this school.
Fourth, no obscene language will be tolerated anywhere on this
school's property - whether in class, in the hallways, or at athletic
events. If you can't speak without using the F-word, you can't speak. By
obscene language I mean the words banned by the Federal Communications
Commission plus epithets such as the N-word, even when used by one black
student to address another, or "bitch," even when addressed by a girl to
a girlfriend. It is my intent that by the time you leave this school,
you will be among the few of your age to distinguish instinctively
between the elevated and the degraded, the holy and the obscene.
Fifth, we will end all self-esteem programs. In this school
self-esteem will be attained in only one way (the way people attained it
until the state of California decided otherwise a generation ago) - by
earning it. One immediate consequence is that there will be one
valedictorian, not eight.
Sixth, and last, I am reorienting the school toward academics
and away from politics and propaganda. No more time will be devoted to
scaring you about smoking and caffeine, or terrifying you about sexual
harassment or global warming. No more semesters will be devoted to
condom-wearing and teaching you to regard sexual relations as only or
primarily a health issue. There will be no more attempts to convince you
that you are a victim because you are not white, or not male, or not
heterosexual, or not Christian. We will have failed if any one of you
graduates from this school and does not consider him or herself
inordinately lucky - to be alive and to be an American.
Now, please stand and join me in the Pledge of Allegiance to the
flag of our country. As many of you do not know the words, your teachers
will hand them out to you.