Eloi and Morlocks had to start somewhere

Some Pennsylvania private schools have a new advertising campaign:

The billboard ads say “Intelligence … by Design” and show a Bible Baptist teacher and students.

The Harrisburg Christian radio ad features the voice of science teacher Stephanie Morris. She describes weaknesses in the theory of evolution and says, “The foundation of my biology course is a personal God and creator.”

Harrisburg Christian has 302 students and costs up to $6,600 per year. Bible Baptist, with 475 students, costs up to $4,400 a year.

That’s 777 students getting a sub-standard education in the sciences, and $4,083,200 getting flushed down a rathole. It’s an odd situation, where the wealthy yank their kids out of the public schools and put them in an expensive pit of ignorance by choice, and at the same time fight to underfund the public education they’ve abandoned and turn the schools the poor and middle class rely on into holding pens. We all lose.


  1. says

    You know, I went to one of those sorts of private schools until sixth grade… they tried to feed me the same crap. The only reason I didn’t come away with a completely warped grasp of biology is because I asked the teacher what evolution was (after finding the word in a dinosaur book somewhere… and the dumbass, completely lacking any cognitive ability, had the audacity to tell me that the subject was “off-limits”.

    Not exactly the way to get a pre-teen boy to ignore a subject… IMHO

  2. lt.kizhe says

    A related (and alarming, if these cretins get elected) development here:

    I am astounded by this bit:
    “Tory added that the assistance might be limited to faith-based schools, rather than extended to all private schools.”

    Absolutely not! Given that you’re going to give tax credits (or whatever form the assistance takes) to parents who choose private schools at all, how can you justify giving them only for religious schools, and not for secular private schools? That is religious discrimination, and I doubt it would withstand a Charter challenge. (Yes, the Catholic system gets public funding, but IIRC they got grand-fathered in when the Charter was passed. It’s not ideal, but politics is ever the art of the possible. At least they tend not to teach religion over science.)

  3. ChrisF says

    Does it really hasten that day? If more half-witted people pour all their $$$ into this stuff, it provides better marketing for them, and better marketing of half-witted ideas helps produce more half-witted people who are more than happy to have half-witted leaders. It’s a vicious cycle for which the only cure is a real education… not a cycle likely to be broken in the near future, unfortunately.

  4. Miguelito says

    Please tell me that Pennsylvania doesn’t have a school-voucher program and that the government is not paying for this crap.

  5. says

    If the point of “No Child Left Behind” is that no child will be . . . you know, left behind when the Rapture comes, then it’s all working perfectly: public schools are forced to fail, kids are fed bullshit, and then . . . whoosh! Up into heaven with Super-Happy Magic Jesus.

    I find it hard not to agree with Hakim Bey:

    As for the genuine death-cultists, ritual cannibals, Armageddon-freaks–the Xtian Right–we can only pray that the RAPTURE WILL COME & snatch them all up from behind the steering wheels of their cars, from their lukewarm game shows & chaste beds, take them all up into heaven & let us get on with human life.

  6. says

    I’d agree with you, but I was awakened by a previous article on your blog — about Patrick Henry College. Students who get the sort of crap education at places like Harrisburg are ideally qualified to continue their “studies” at PHC — after which they can get interships with wingnut senators — so it all works out economically for these people.

  7. Dan S. says

    Why does my adopted state continue to embarrass me so?!

    Somebody should make counter-ads showing the real effects of such an “intelligently” designed curriculum . .

  8. Dan S. says

    And yes, I’ve had the joy of having wealthy&privileged types tell me all about their support for vouchers &etc., explicitly stating how the whole point is that the undesirables will get stuck in, basically, holding pens, while the few good, um, people will have bestowed upon them the blessings of civilization.

  9. steve s says

    Actually, you know, that’s a pretty good business idea–have weekend or summer “Real Biology–Intelligent Design” classes. Rent some cheap office space that would hold a few classes of 30 students apiece, find some of the minority of biology BS degree holders who are creationist dimbulbs to teach the classes at $10/hr, advertise among the least educated and most creationist congregations (baptist? pentecostal?) buy some ‘textbooks’ from Jim Pinkowski and Ken Ham, and charge the parents $500 to teach little Timmy Real God-Fearing Science over 6 weeks.

    You know, the money is pretty tempting…

    If any of you are in the RTP area of North Carolina, and you see me arranging this kind of thing this summer, and you thwart it, I will kick you in the nuts.

  10. steve s says

    Using Mozilla I was getting an error trying to post this, btw. Had to switch to IE to get it to work.

  11. Kurt says

    Well, they’re killing stuff in the public schools as well.


    The local school board voted to cut funding to an well-regarded international program. Critics of it claimed it was pro-Marxist, anti-Christian, and anti-American. 80K cost in a district with a 50 Million budget.

    Being rich doesn’t protect one from being ignorant.

  12. says

    I grew up in small town, rural PA. Jame Carvell summed it up nicely, to paraphrase: In between Philly and Pittsburgh, PA is a northern Alabama. [For the geographically challenged, Harrisburg is in the “in between.”]

  13. phototaxi says

    On Ventura Boulevard in Los Angeles, there’s a billboard for a local christian school showing a bottle of drinking water with the phrase “Pure and clear.”

    Of course, if what you want out of an education is something (analogously) devoid of either fiber or nutrition, well, be happy, little christians.

  14. wamba says

    On Ventura Boulevard in Los Angeles, there’s a billboard for a local christian school showing a bottle of drinking water with the phrase “Pure and clear.”

    And the Scientologists haven’t hit them up for trademark infringement on the use of the term “clear”?

  15. says

    As long as they are not learning anything maybe they could memorize the Bible just like students at those Wasabi sponsored religious schools in Saudi Arabia memorize the Koran. I know that not everyone is interested in academic fields but what ever happened to learning a trade?

    Hum Wasabi! Sacrilegious sushi!

  16. EmbarrassedCousinMonkey says

    Yes, that’s a lot of money down a rathole. From there, it flows into a “ratline,” passim. Contempt for science is contempt for study of the same Creation they purport to celebrate. If anything but perversion emanates from this vanity, I’d be surprised. -ECM

  17. Pete K says

    Well, we can fight to do the opposite, can’t we? – promote science and augment public education funding