(Woodland, Vermont) Psychologists, psychiatrists, and public school counselors are reporting an increasing
number of cases of anxiety disorders in students that are taught environmental subjects.
The problem seems to be the most prevalent in kindergarten through 6th grade, when students are at ages
where impressionable minds accept new information authoritatively. Complaints of generalized
anxiety, school phobia, nightmares, and insomnia are the most common. Some teachers that cover environmental
materials even report incidents of fights in the classroom.
"The altercations usually end up with shouts like, 'oh yeah? well my dad can beat up your dad!' The students
involved invariably come from households with differing political or religious beliefs", said a teacher at Woodland,
Vermont's Henry David Thoreau Equal-Outcome Learning Center.
ecoEnquirer received an e-mail from one Woodland teacher who has experienced many of these problems firsthand.
Teacher Amanda Deerfield wrote, "I try to give the studends a first-rate edukation, but the responce to enviromentel
instruction have had sum very negativ results. Right now they are in my clasrooom watchin that moovie
The Day After Tommorrow, and I can already hear them shouting at each uther."
Principal John Spanker noted, "Since these conflicts seem to arise from misinformation that parents
are feeding their kids at home, we suggest that parents stop trying to teach their children...that job
should be left to the professionals."
Some parents have objected to specific teaching materials that their children have brought home from school.
The two environmental books most often objected to are, "Heather Has Too Much Stuff", and "Help! Mom!
There's a Polluter Under My Bed!". One local Woodland parent, who declined to be identified for fear of retribution
toward his child, told us, "These kids shouldn't be taught this controversial stuff at such a young age. What ever
happened to reading, writing, and arithmetic? My kids come home knowing their 'carbon footprint', how much
sea levels are supposed to rise, and Al Gore's middle name, but they can't write a complete sentence telling what they have learned!"
Principal Spanker disagreed, saying, "Times have changed. Learning has changed. We all want the same
things for our kids' future: a clean environment, equal opportunity with equal pay, presidents that don't act
like cowboys, and a clean environment. The kids need to know the truth...after all, they are tomorrow's leaders.
I'm just thankful that we have psychotropic medications to get us through these difficult formative years."
Breaking News: Tenth Bali Global Warming Conference Ends with Historic Agreement