TALLAHASSEE – A Florida virtual school lesson on Christianity, Islam and terrorism came under scrutiny when it, among other things, claimed many terrorists “suffer from low self-esteem.”
The lesson purportedly made dubious comparisons of Christianity and Islam, and seemed to imply Christian fundamentalism somehow influenced Islamic fundamentalism.
The Global Dispatch reported:
A high school FLVS, Florida Virtual Online Class, World History class describes Christianity in the lesson titled “Invisible Warfare” stating that passages in the Bible “could be used to justify the slaughter of men…” and make very strong links between Islam and Christianity as fundamentalist groups.
These are part of the Common Core standards and not something the teacher can alter or change, per a conversation with the FLVS rep and The Global Dispatch.
The online class is available to high school students with the topic 08.07 Invisible Warfare: Objectives being the first page students view. The lesson begins by defining a fundamentalist and then linking the distorted beliefs to terrorism.
The lesson claims, “Common traits that psychologists have found in terrorists are that they are often risk-takers and many suffer from low self-esteem. Sometimes joining a terrorist group provides these individuals with a sense of belonging.”
The Global Dispatch reports a source with the school claimed the lesson is aligned with “Common Core standards and not something the teacher can alter or change.”
In the comments of the story, the school hit back by claiming the lesson was, in fact, not Common Core aligned, despite the confirmation from an anonymous source. It also disputed the conclusions made from reading the passages of the lesson itself.