We Don't Need No Education

Minnetonka parents target "anti-Christian, anti-American" IB program

From Borowski's view, the program is anti-American in the sense that it teaches students that the United States is equal to other countries. "My fear is that my kids are going to be taught America isn't better than any other country in the world," Borowski says.

Parents opposed to the program recently found an ally in one of the district's middle school teachers. Julie Light's objections stem from the IB's endorsement of the Earth Charter, a group that calls for the sustainability of the Earth through, among other things, responsible reproduction and wealth distribution. "They have pledged to work toward principles that deny U.S. citizens rights guaranteed to them," says Light.

Fervor over God and country aside, the school district's communications department assembled an 18-page document as a definitive answer to questions lurking about the fledgling program. But most of the concerned parents simply don't trust the district's counterarguments, and they complain about the heavy hand of the district's superintendent, Dennis Peterson.

As Aaron Campbell nears completion of his first year in the program, he says he doesn't see how any class could be a threat to his Christianity and adamantly refutes any sort of anti-American tone in the classes. "The parents aren't the ones taking the class," he says. "They're just nervous of new."

What's certain is that the debate is nowhere near finished. The Minnetonka School Board is not reconsidering its decision to offer the program in the high school. What's more, school board members recently discussed the possibility of bringing IB to the district's elementary and middle schools.

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