Scholastic will cut some industry-sponsored curricula and appoint a review board to vet new projects, reports the New York Times. The publisher was criticized for distributing a lesson packet on energy funded by the American Coal Foundation. The packet praised the benefits of coal without mentioning any of the drawbacks.
In addition to the coal curriculum, Scholastic distributed a program stressing the environmental wrongs of plastic water bottles, sponsored by Brita, which sells water filters. It also had a $3 million Microsoft campaign in which schools could earn points toward prizes for each Microsoft search, as well as a program featuring Playmobil’s small plastic figures.
Scholastic has ended these programs. However, the publisher will continue to distribute materials produced by the Egg Board.
. . . “All About Eggs” gives teachers a poster showing how eggs journey from farm to table, lesson plans revolving around eggs, and promotes the Good Egg Project, through which farmers contribute one egg to feed the hungry for each student who takes the pledge to “Eat Good. Do Good Every Day.”
They couldn’t write a grammatically correct pledge?
In the 2010-11 school year, the program included a Back to Breakfast contest in which 12 teachers each won $5,000 for short essays describing how they would use that grant, with the winners creating videos to post on YouTube. In one video, “Eggucation Week Back to Breakfast Challenge,” a Chicago fourth-grade teacher tells of teaching her students about the benefits of eating eggs, and asking them to create egg recipes.
Teachers who wanted that $5,000 probably didn’t use the word “cholesterol” in their essays. Still, I suspect nobody spent a full week on Eggucation.