Teacher Text Demonizes Phonics

Published March 1, 2000

A Whole Language textbook currently in use in a state university in New York warns budding educators that teaching children to read by sounding out the syllables of the English language is a “conspiracy” of the “Far Right” to “promote a religious agenda.”

The intent of the Far Right plot, according to Constance Weaver, author of the textbook, Reading Process and Practice, From Socio-Psycholinguistics to Whole Language (1994), is to keep children “from reading or thinking for themselves” and to promote “docility and obedience on the part of the lower classes” so as to maintain “socioeconomic stratification.”

Excerpted from “Beware of the Phonics Conspiracy,” by Phyllis Schlafly.