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Archive for the ‘General Posts’ Category

Trip to the Capitol

I suppose you could say that we’re on a traveling streak right now.  I don’t mind though because we just returned from one of my favorite locales: Austin, Texas.  We went to a homeschool conference to be present as an exhibitor for our degree coaching business.  It was great to see the capitol city one more time and and marvel at the beauty of Central Texas.  In addition, we met some really neat homschooling families at the conference and even had the pleasure of meeting with their church on Sunday morning.  It was a truly blessed time.  I want to introduce you to some of the people we met, and give a brief synopsis of our trip.  Just hang with me.  It may take a couple days.

The stately grandeur of the Texas Capitol is one of my favorite sights

I’ll slowly be uploading photos over the next few days because I have to gather them from the 3 or 4 different cameras and picture-takers 🙂

I like this nighttime shot even better. Credits to David for a nice aperature setting 🙂

CollegeBuilder employees

Tim Lambert, President of Texas Home School Coalition

We wanted to make the most of our visit to Austin, so after the conference closed one day we sneaked off to tour the Texas Capitol building – much to the delight of the younger ones who had never seen it before.  The younger kids awed themselves at the sheer vastness of the place, and I think everybody is now planning on building future homes in pink granite 🙂

The Texas House chamber. Other than the people, not much has changed in this room for six or seven decades.

Not obvious from the picture, but this is on the Capitol lawn.

After meeting so many nice folks at the conference, we were invited by them to meet the following Sunday for worship – which we did and were greatly blessed.  A special shout-out here to the Nielsen family, the Youngblood family, the Moody family, the Hart family and others who were so gracious to us this past weekend.  Thank y’all sooo much!!

Susanna & Jennifer Youngblood

Josiah and Hannah

And just because I feel like poking fun at Internet Explorer (which I just left for Firefox)… if browsers were guns…

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We (the whole family) just returned from a great experience at the Republican State Convention.  Acronyms abounded and I believe that someone should publish a tutorial to help individuals deciper the meaning of RPT, SREC, SD, CD, etc.  All in all it was lots of fun but I decided to be brief and just post some pictures 🙂

Welcome to the largest political convention in the world! Seriously!

Beth & Micah were pages!

Mr. Greg Abbot – Texas Attorney General and incredible, amazing man

Yours truly – running for platform committee 🙂

Dost need an introduction?

My lovely sister (far left) served as a caucus secretary. Good job Katie!

Our caucus meeting

Mr. James White of the Texas House of Reps.

I got there early so I could get a good seat 🙂

Estimates put the number of people over 10,000

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I thought I’ve always loved writing but Mom told me she recalls a time where I cried if she required me to write a couple of sentences.  I’m sure this is true, but somewhere back there my ability and aptitude for it grew because I really can’t remember a time where it wasn’t one of my favorite things to do.  Law school has only increased my love for it.  I was cleaning up (read deleting files) on the hardrive of one of my slow old Windows XP computers, (I now have an HP which literally blazes through every task I can throw at it –  Apple is highly overrated 🙂 ) and I came across several old articles I had written when I was in charge of our homeschool group newsletter.  I was fifteen!  Here one’s of them which I will also cross-post at my business blog, CollegeBuilder Solutions, when I get the chance.  I’m now almost twenty-five so this was a few years ago.  I’ve enjoyed seeing how my writing has changed over the years.  Some of my grammar structure in this article is deplorable.  Professor Hartless (true to his name) would have flunked me in college English for this 🙂

_________

Another Radical Proposal

by Jonathan Covey

 Is it possible that we have let a virus sneak up into our midst?  Could it be true that public education in America is leaving us academically and morally destitute?  It is possible, and alas, it is true.  The public education system, unfortunately, is very effective at what it does, and that’s why we must step back and evaluate the methods of its madness.  America’s public school system breaks all records for producing academically unacceptable results, and is unrivaled for providing students with negative learning atmospheres, and error-riddled curricula.

     Public schooling in Americahas become the country’s all-time great educational flop, using billions of taxpayer dollars each year to do it.  Leon Botstein, in his essay “CurtailingHigh School: A Radical Proposal,” states that young people are maturing faster now than they did in the pre-WWII era.  This is just not so.  The average child is actually maturing much slower than his counterparts of earlier times because of the public school system.  Public education has segregated students by ages, and in doing so, has separated them from the influence of more mature students and of adults who have maturing effects on them.  How many times do working adults find themselves in a job situation with people exclusively their same age?  I haven’t as of yet, heard of any such thing.  Additionally, illiteracy is a constant, recurring problem for public schools to battle.  Attorney Chris Klicka reports the findings of a 1982 study by the National Commission on Excellence in Education: “Moreover the study found that 27 million illiterates were in our nation, most of them churned out by our public school factory.  The estimate for functionally illiterate people is at 45 million” (23).  And this was in 1982!  Much evidence suggests that even college students are not receiving sufficient amounts of intensive instruction.  For example Klicka writes; “According to another Gallup Poll in 1990, of 696 college seniors, a quarter of them believed that Christopher Columbus first landed in America sometime after 1500, and over a third of them believed that the Magna Carta was signed by the pilgrims on the Mayflower…over 40 percent could not determine when the Civil War occurred” (37).  All this, and yet the federal government continues to pour many more millions of dollars into public schools every year without realizing that lack of funds is not the problem.  Public education in American doesn’t need an overhaul, it needs a renovation.

Students in the public education system have many distractions from a negative environment that contributes to the poor quality of work in many schools.  Parents tenderly raise their children until they are of a certain age.  Then most parents, unknowingly, send their children off to one public education institution or another to have their worldview, and knowledge crafted by someone else.  And who are these people?  Most parents can’t even truthfully say that they have a casual relationship with the person who has just as large an influence in their children’s lives as they do.  The parents usually know only what their child tells them.  “How was your school today, honey?”  “Do you like your teachers?”  Most parents only know these people as mean-old Mr. Fill-in-the-blank from Central Junior High, or nice Mrs. You-name-it from fourth grade math class.  Granted, there are some well-meaning, responsible, and even excellent teachers out there- let me not take that away from them, I personally know some who are excellent examples of what a teacher should be.  But let me also state it this way: who, in his or her right mind, would let a stranger borrow their brand-new car without knowing something about them?  Aren’t your children worth more to you than your car?  I hope so.  It’s not a fender-bender at stake here; it’s the future character and lives of our own children. Public school teachers may be well meaning, but we are not well meaning if we don’t care about the educational development of our own children.  We’re not even decent if we don’t care that much.  I think of the violence kids are exposed to in The System; the murder, the foul language.  Columbine High School holds no distant memories for me.  Don’t kid yourself with the old there’s-an-exception-to-everything routine.  That’s what the parents of victims said.  Do we stand by and allow our children to be taught principles that go directly against our spiritual worldview?  In the words of Patrick Henry; “Forbid it, Almighty God!”  Truly the age old adage was never more true than now; forewarned is forearmed.

On a less severe note, there are rational reasons for the way kids act in schools; most of it having to do with the way they are taught.   Schooling was all about promoting character in colonial times.  In earlyAmerica, the schooling of a gentleman often included learning to read from the Bible, usually instilling Biblical virtues in the reader.  The school system today is not about promoting character and moral values among students.  We constantly hear of the content used by teachers in the classroom.  The theory of evolution is presented as full fact, with the Big Bang theory running a close second.  Supposedly these are scientifically verified by Dr. So-and-so and Mr. PhD.  The order of creation is for the Bible-thumping, trip-over-the-transmission-in-the-front-yard bumpkin who doesn’t know any better and couldn’t be reasoned with anyway.  Students often fall prey to these myths.  Those few that do stand up for what’s right fall foul of the schools and are severely reprimanded.  Homosexuality is also promoted in positive light.  Public education dares not touch the sensitive topics of religion in school.  All except the religion of secular humanism, that is.  It’s not politically correct and safe to mention religion, they maintain, and they mistakenly interpret secular humanism and atheism for neutrality.  To not teach one kind of religion is to promote another kind.  Atheism really is a religion; the religion of trying to believe none at all.  All the godless behavior that comes with atheism is a direct result of not believing that God exists, and has set certain moral standards.  This is a reason for all of the violence and misbehavior.  If there are no absolutes and no right and wrong, then what in the world is wrong with killing someone?

The schools are suffering from violence and bad behavior drawn directly from the curricula that they teach.  They’re shooting themselves in the foot. No pun intended.  Why not allow prayer and religion in schools?  Morality is vitally important for schools in fact.  What has happened to this country, and to the public education system? Truly the “wall of separation” thinking has got to be the most widely misinterpreted piece of undemocratic philosophy in the history of the United States.  We should be in earnest prayer about the state of our schools.

Yes, public education is very effective.  But it seems that the only thing that public schools are effective at is being ineffective.  I propose that curtailing high school isn’t enough.  We need to fundamentally re-think and revamp the educational system.  Come to think of it, it has already been thought out for us.  Most of America’s founding fathers were homeschooled.  Replace it with home schooling or private tutoring, both of which have proven better methods of getting educated results.  Let the federal government foot the bill of restructuring if they really want to help.  How’s that for a radical proposal?

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The Governor and I

Our family attended a small gathering in a local restuarant to hear Governor Perry talk about his budget compacting plan.  I just happened to be in the right place at the right time!  More pics will be forthcoming.

The Governor endorsing James White for Texas House of Reps.

All took place at the Catfish Cabin in Lumberton.  Imagine eating your salad in a (comparatively) small hometown restuarant, and in walks the Governor of Texas! (of course, we knew he was coming 🙂

Local homschooling mom friend of ours gets a TV interview

The Fuzzy Picture Syndrome (FPS) strikes again

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The church that we are privileged to meet with is hosting a worldview conference with creationist and author Dr. Jobe Martin.  The conference will be focusing on creation, family discipleship, and roles of men and women.  More information is available at www.jadeavebaptistchurch.com.  The conference is free and is open for anyone to attend.  This is a great opportunity to hear solidly biblical teaching on issues which are uniquely crucial to our time.  We are excited!!

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Following are pics from a truly wonderful trip to Black Mountain, North Carolina where we were blessed to attend the Gospel Marriage Conference hosted by the NCFIC.  It was a blessing indeed to hear teaching that continually honored the Lord Jesus Christ and relentlessly brought the topics back to Him as our focus.

Our van window says it all

Dramatic backdrop

The Hynes family

Charcie, Caleb, and Peter Cook; siblings with a love for the Lord Jesus

Fellowship

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On the weekend of July4th we took a trip to North Texas.  We stayed with the C. Family for a night and were honored to be able to participate in the movie they are creating named “Johnny Texas”, for the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival.  Their wonderful hospitality and the fun we had while filming made a memorable weekend.  We also barged in on Mrs. Venita T. for a couple of days and enjoyed seeing her and the B. family and others from Rockwall Bible Church.  We greatly enjoyed all events of the weekend, but, the pictures will say it better than I can.

Jonathan, For the Coveys

We stopped in "historic" Jefferson on the way up. The gazebo was the best part.

Making rough slingshots as props for the movie

Susanna really liked the swing

Katie and Maddie

Mr. Lee created "Katy" to play a specific and dangerous role in the film 🙂

Mom, Mrs. Tracy C. and Mrs. Martha G.

Arriving at the Dallas Heritage Museum, where we shot some of the scenes.

Everyone in period dress, waiting for their assigned scenes

Ladies

Discussing how to shoot a scene

Behind the camera or in front of it, he's ready

Mom got a part

Everthing but the camera fits

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