Dennis L. Cuddy, Ph.D.
At the end of Part 31 of my series on "Mental Health, Education and Social Control," I referred to the goal of global "integration" on the part of the Bush administration. This was also the goal of the Clinton administration and of the power elite in general. Their plan has been globally to integrate regional economic arrangements and then advocate their management by a World Socialist Government. Currently there is an effort to integrate the U.S., Canada and Mexico, and that is why American politicians have no real desire to control our borders despite their posturing to the contrary. Why else do you think there are only about 11,000 border patrol agents when even New York City alone has 37,000 police officers? To show how the integration of two entities---the U.S. and Europe---has already been occuring on a practical level, I wrote the following article which was printed in the CONGRESSIONAL RECORD on July 14, 1998 :
"The New Transatlantic Agenda"
While the implications of School-to-Work (STW) at the state and national levels have been widely debated, not much has been written about the international connections. On May 18, 1998, the White House released a statement at the conclusion of the U.S.-European Summit in London, indicating that "through the New Transatlantic Agenda(NTA), created in 1995, the United States and the European Union have focused on addressing the challenges and opportunities of global integration."
One part of this "global integration" in 1995 was the agreement between the U.S. and the European Community establishing a cooperation program in higher education and vocational education and training. The agreement, signed December 21 of that year, called for "improving the quality of human resource development...Transatlantic student mobility...and thus portability of academic credits." In this regard, a Joint Committee would reach decisions by consensus.
As part of the NTA, the U.S. and European Union then convened a major conference, "Bridging the Atlantic: People-to-People Links," on May 5-6,1997 calling for "thematic networks for curriculum development," and further stating that in an information-based global economy, "governments too are obliged to adapt their economic, training and social welfare programs." The conference final report noted that in the U.S., ACHIEVE has been one of the organizations at the forefront of defining key issues in this regard and developing strategies to address them. ACHIEVE has been measuring and reporting each state's annual progress in establishing internationally competitive standards, and business leaders involved have indicated their commitment to consider the quality of each state's standards when making business location or expansion decisions.
The "Partners in a Global Economy Working Group" of the conference discussed "what redesigning of curricula is required...(i.e., what career skills are needed),...portability of skill certificates...and institutionalizing cross-national learning/training activities."
Most people debating STW in the U.S. are familiar with the role of Marc Tucker, president of the National Center on Education and the Economy. He's also on the National Skill Standards Board (NSSB), and on its website under international links, one finds "Smartcards Project Forum," under which one reads: "The Tavistock Institute and the European Commission are working on a feasibility study to research the affect of using Smartcards in competence accreditation. The study will be carried out in the USA and parts of Europe." The project involves assessing and validating students' skills, with information placed on personal skills Smartcards, which "become real passports to employment."
If without a passport one cannot enter a country, does this mean that without a skills passport one may not be able to get a job in the future?
In October 1997, the Tavistock Institute (and Manchester University) completed the final report for the European Commission, and described in a report summary were the relevancy of Goals 2000, SCANS (U.S. Department of Labor "Secretary's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills") typology with its "profound implications for the curriculum and training changes that this will require," valid skills standards and portable credentials "benchmarked to international standards such as those promulgated by the International Standards Organization (ISO)."
The report summary went on to say that "there is increasing attention being focused on developing global skill standards and accreditation agreements," and there will be "partnerships between government, industry, and representatives of worker organizations...(and) a high degree of integration...embedding skills within the broader context of economic and social activity, and specifically within the areas of secondary education, work-based learning and local and regional economic development....The NSSB, Goals 2000, STW Program are all combining to act as a catalyst to promote the formation of partnerships to develop skills standards. In this regard, a system like O*Net can be seen as the 'glue' that holds everything together."
O*Net is a new occupational database system sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration, and is being piloted in Texas, South Carolina, California, New York and Minnesota. It includes information such as "Worker Characteristics" (abilities, interests and work styles) and "Worker Requirements" (e.g., basic skills, knowledge and education).
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Dennis Laurence Cuddy, historian and political analyst, received a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (major in American History, minor in political science). Dr. Cuddy has taught at the university level, has been a political and economic risk analyst for an international consulting firm, and has been a Senior Associate with the U.S. Department of Education.
Cuddy has also testified before members of Congress on behalf of the U.S. Department of Justice. Dr. Cuddy has authored or edited twenty books and booklets, and has written hundreds of articles appearing in newspapers around the nation, including The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times and USA Today. He has been a guest on numerous radio talk shows in various parts of the country, such as ABC Radio in New York City, and he has also been a guest on the national television programs USA Today and CBS's Nightwatch.
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