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Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

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Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

Post  Betep on Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:58 pm

Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

By Conor Powers-Smith
csmith@wickedlocal.com

Posted Feb. 4, 2016 at 11:12 AM

   Michelle Conover, appointed to the Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School Committee in November of last year, has joined with a conservative Christian legal group to urge the district to end a program designed to prevent stress, bullying, drug abuse, suicide, and other issues, on the grounds that the curriculum promotes Buddhism and may pose psychological risks to participating students.

   The National Center for Law and Policy, which describes itself as a nonprofit “legal defense organization which focuses on the protection of religious freedom, the sanctity of life, traditional marriage, parental rights, and other civil liberties,” sent a memorandum outlining its objections to district administrators Tuesday. The district has used the targeted program, Calmer Choice, since 2012, beginning at the Ezra Baker School, and expanding to include M.E. Small, Station Avenue, Nathaniel Wixon, and Mattacheese.

   According to Calmer Choice, also a nonprofit, the program is currently used in 12 districts on the Cape, including Barnstable, Falmouth, Nauset, and Monomoy, as well as the Cape Cod Lighthouse Charter School and Cape Cod Regional Technical High School. The group claims the program “integrates social emotional learning, awareness training, and current brain neuroscience with health promotion and wellness education.”

   The NCLP claims the Calmer Choice curriculum is based on the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program developed by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, which the group says is in turn a thinly veiled secularization of Buddhist practices and beliefs, making the use of Calmer Choice in public schools unconstitutional.

   The NCLP also links the Calmer Choice program with meditation, which it says can be dangerous for psychologically unstable practitioners. The memorandum cites several articles published in journals of psychology and psychiatry reporting unintended effects of meditation, including: “relaxation-induced anxiety and panic, paradoxical increase in tension, less motivation in life, boredom, pain, impaired reality testing, confusion and disorientation, feeling ‘spaced out,’ depression, increased negativity, being more judgmental, feeling addicted to meditation, uncomfortable kinesthetic sensation, mild dissociation, feelings of guilt, psychosis-like symptoms, grandiosity, elation, destructive behavior, suicidal feelings, defenselessness, fear, anger, apprehension, and despair.”

Read the rest: http://capecod.wickedlocal.com/article/20160204/NEWS/160207833
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National Center for Law & Policy
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The National Center for Law & Policy is a conservative Christian[1] non-profit law firm that "focuses on the protection and promotion of religious freedom, the sanctity of life, traditional marriage, parental rights, and other civil liberties." [2] Its president is Dean Broyles.[3] It is not related to the similarly named National Legal and Policy Center.

An example of its work was the unsuccessful attempt to remove yoga classes from elementary schools operated by the Encinitas Union School District in California.
___________________________________________________________________

Conversation: Michelle LaRowe Conover
CONOVER: The Bible gives us a blueprint for raising children and families. God’s Word is a source of strength and encouragement. I always go by the five Cs: comprehend the difference between discipline and punishment, be clear, be consistent, be considerate and, most importantly, center your faith.

Your faith is your set of morals, your values and your beliefs that you live by. Your job as a parent is to program the internal compass that your children have. You can’t underestimate the importance of centering your faith as a family and communicating your faith to your children. If you don’t tell your kids what you believe, someone else will communicate their values.
__________________________________

It's All in the Voice


by Michelle LaRowe Conover

To teach children to keep their voices in check, even when their emotions are running high, you might say:

"I know you don't want to leave the playground, but Mommy can't understand you when you're sobbing. Try using your sad voice and say, 'Mommy, I'm sad that we are leaving. I know we have to go, but I was having fun.'"

"I understand you're upset that your friend took the toy you were playing with, but screaming doesn't help. Can you use your kind voice and say, 'I was playing with that. May I please have it back?' and offer a toy to trade?"

"Wow! You made it across the rope ladder. You must be happy. Can you use your happy voice and say, 'I did it!'?"

OK, kinda sweet and Nannyish but look at the bottom of the page
Thriving Family is a Focus on the Family publication that encourages, teaches, celebrates and inspires families to thrive in Christ.
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A member of The Assemblies of God, on the local School Committee, is trying to influence her personal (Evangelical) beliefs under the guise of "Separation of Church and State". Sorry, no. If you can't leave your religion at home, we'd rather not have you in this workplace. And that's legal.
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One last thing. A letter to the CCTimes:
Calmer Choice is Satan in our schools

Posted Oct. 22, 2015 at 2:01 AM

   Calmer Choice, a nonprofit that partners with local schools to teach students mindfulness in an effort to reduce stress and resolve conflict, is a mind-control religious system invading Cape Cod schools (and many others) by taking advantage of the chaos in our society.

   The family unit is under assault by Satan, and the fallout of the resulting disintegration is children without unified parental guidance. Such children are prone to experiencing more stress than the normal growing pains. For their very real pain, Calmer Choice finds an opening to offer a soothing Kool-Aid of Zen Buddhism, intellectualism and pop psychology.

   This an attempt by Satan to offer a religion of mere earthly benefits without Christ. It is based on the ancient lie of Satan, “You shall be as God.” In other words, you don’t need to rely on God, you can be your own god and rely on yourself.

   Suffering is part of the fall of man in a sinful world determined to have none of God. Everyone suffers, whether good or bad. What we choose to find solace and comfort in shapes us for time and eternity. We need to hear from heaven for lasting inner peace.

   Dennis Clough

   West Falmouth
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Really? My calendar says 2016, I thought we were over the influence of Satan. Dennis Clough is a Baptist.

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Re: Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

Post  Admin on Sun Feb 07, 2016 11:13 am

The Nut-Cases thought that the "Lotus Position" was too religious. Renamed "Cris-Cros Applesauce".

Non-religious Crucifix is called Christ-Cross Applesauce?

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Re: Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

Post  Betep on Thu Feb 18, 2016 6:36 pm

Buddhism teaches reliance on self

By Dennis Clough

I attended the Feb. 10 open meeting of the Dennis Yarmouth Regional School Committee to see the outcome of the multifaceted challenge to Calmer Choice.

I must say, Chairman Brian Carey did a wonderful job of being fair and maintaining control of the meeting. He set an atmosphere allowing strong opinions to be voiced, yet devoid of personal rancor.

Impressive also was the decorum of the board members (volunteers all). Likewise, the educators, including Superintendent Carol Woodbury, all displayed a deep level of concerned commitment for the children.

The parents, by their very presence, showed how deeply they care about their children and the unprecedented pressures they face today. A children’s ukulele band singing “You Are My Sunshine” was a delightful plus!

The sincerity of all concerned is unquestionable.

Yet the source of Calmer Choice teachings is still questionable. Is Calmer Choice based on Buddhism? Frankly, some don’t care, others don’t know, and some of us do know and do care...

Meanwhile, Christians have seen the voice of the Christian church systematically ousted from the public schools and forums.

Similar efforts seek to scrub from the historic record any reference to the Christian faith as instrumental in forming America as the greatest nation in the world.

Our national progression into night, coupled with knowing by experience the difference Christ can make in a life, is frustrating for Christians.

The stifling of the preaching of the powerful gospel of Christ, when it is the antidote for all that confronts us, may foster what seems like a knee-jerk reaction. Yet one man’s knee-jerk may be another man’s kick-start.

It is to be hoped that many will enter Google university and research the roots of Calmer Choice, the teachings of Buddhism and the gospel of Jesus Christ. Christ has never suffered by an honest comparison. —Dennis Clough lives in West Falmouth.

Some have resented Michelle Conover’s bringing this issue to the forefront. But consider how our country has undergone a moral climate change that is rapidly leading us to the brink of destruction.
_______________________________

YOU are part of the problem Dennis. Take s few deep breaths. Some people don't much care for your flavor of religion and we'd like you to sit in the corner and be quiet.
Judge not, lest ye be judged. coffee

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Re: Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

Post  Admin on Fri Mar 04, 2016 6:45 am

Calmer Choice fight settles down at D-Y

   DENNIS-YARMOUTH
   Calmer Choice fight settles down at D-Y
     
   Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School Committee member Michelle LaRowe Conover and the National Center for Law & Policy set a Feb. 26 deadline for the D-Y school district to end all contracts with the Calmer Choice program, which Superintendent Carol Woodbury declined to do. |
   
   By Christine Legere

   Posted Mar. 3, 2016 at 6:16 PM
   Updated at 6:37 PM

       A controversial effort to remove the Calmer Choice mindfulness program from Dennis-Yarmouth elementary and middle schools appears to have fizzled.

       California attorney Dean Broyles, acting on behalf of Yarmouth parent and Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School Committee member Michelle LaRowe Conover, gave the district's superintendent and school board until Feb. 26 to end all contracts with Calmer Choice.

       Superintendent Carol Woodbury, who has enjoyed the enthusiastic backing of the School Committee and a large group of parents since the Feb. 2 ultimatum arrived, didn't comply.

       Woodbury did not respond to several requests for comment, but School Committee Chairman Brian Carey said the district’s Calmer Choice program will go on as planned.

       “We haven’t heard a thing, and we’re moving ahead with Calmer Choice,” Carey said. “It has my full support.”

       Conover first approached Woodbury in November to express concern over Calmer Choice. She questioned whether the program, rooted in Buddhism, violated laws regarding separation of church and state.

       Conover also claimed the mindfulness training being offered at the schools lacked adequate research supporting its use with children.

       The district gave Conover and her children the choice of opting out of the training.

       On Feb. 2, Broyles, general counsel for the Christian group National Center for Law & Policy, sent a legal memorandum to Woodbury, ordering the end of Calmer Choice. The memorandum claimed the program was based in Buddhist beliefs and culture. Broyles noted Calmer Choice has Jon Kabat-Zinn, one of the founders of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program (MBSR), as an honorary member of its board of directors.

       Both Broyles and Conover said initially that litigation was an option if the school district didn’t comply.

       Contacted earlier this week, Conover referred requests for comment to her attorney.

       Broyles sent the following written statement: “My client has rendered the citizens of Cape Cod and our nation a great service by courageously exposing the truth about Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn and MBSR’s Buddhist agenda. We unapologetically stand by and encourage everyone to read our demand letter to DYRSD containing excellent scientific and social science research. We will continue to raise public awareness and actively oppose stealth religious programs in public schools that may be dangerous for children, like Calmer Choice’s deceptive MBSR curriculum.”

       Broyles, who made no mention of litigation, said the statement was all he was willing to say at this time.
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Fizzled. I guess the lawyer can't smell enough money. Twisted Evil

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Re: Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

Post  Admin on Tue Mar 22, 2016 10:17 am

Conover puts Calmer Choice fight to bed

Posted Mar. 22, 2016 at 6:38 AM
Updated at 6:39 AM

Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School Committee member Michele Conover has only been on the school committee for a few months, but she has made her presence felt. After she objected to the use of certain methods used during the district’s Calmer Choice program. She went so far as to enlist the services of conservative Christian legal group, the National Center for Law and Policy, which demanded the removal of Calmer Choice.

The school committee voted to support keeping the stress reduction program in schools.

After a Yarmouth resident inquired about the status of Calmer Choice at the committee’s Monday, March 21 meeting, Conover took the opportunity to address the firestorm that surrounded her and the school committee following her challenge to the program, as well as changes the district had made to the way it administers Calmer Choice.

“First, I'm glad to see that Calmer Choice is making positive changes and reevaluating their curriculum and the way that they're doing things as a result of the concerns that were raised,” Conover said in a written statement. “Calmer Choice is publicly distancing itself from MBSR and Jon Kabat-Zinn, updating their curriculum, cleaning up their messaging and revising their website- all things that were not happening before.”

Conover said that the most crucial change in her eyes is that students and parents are explicitly told that participation is optional, and that “opt out” notices are sent home with students before they participate in Calmer Choice. She thanked Superintendent Carol Woodbury for making this change. “As a result of the concerns raised, parents in D-Y can now make an educated and informed decision that is in the best interest of their children. That's a huge win for all.”

A few weeks ago, a public hearing on Calmer Choice packed the normally sparsely attended school committee meeting with parents, and local papers were inundated with letters and opinion pieces about the program, and about Conover. Social media was also abuzz with talk of Conover, and the Internet being what it is, she found herself of the receiving end of some vicious personal attacks. She says her daughter also felt the brunt of the public debacle when a parent disinvited her from a schoolmate’s birthday party after reading about Conover’s objections to Calmer Choice in the newspaper.

Despite all that, Conover says she’s glad she spoke up, noting that disagreement is a vital part of the democratic process. “It's when all sides of an issue are carefully considered, when tough questions are asked, and when principled disagreements are made, that the end product becomes better. I believe that this is true in the Calmer Choice case.”
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Keep an eye on this woman... Suspect

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Re: Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

Post  Admin on Mon Apr 25, 2016 11:03 pm

Brian Sullivan runs for School Committee.
https://electsullivanblog.wordpress.com/

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Re: Conover calls for end to Calmer Choice in Dennis-Yarmouth

Post  Admin on Thu Apr 28, 2016 5:15 am

D-Y school race grows to 4 candidates

SOUTH YARMOUTH — The race for a one-year term on the Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School Committee continues to heat up, with another write-in candidate coming forward.

Patience Smith-Cabrera, a resident of Yarmouth Port and a Cape native, expands the field to four. Michelle LaRowe Conover and Joseph Glynn will be listed on the ballot, and former school committee member Stephen Edwards announced recently he would run a write-in campaign.

“I was originally going to pull papers, but another parent who had the same vision had already pulled papers and we didn’t want to run against each other,” Smith-Cabrera said via email. “I was informed the day before the deadline that she had to withdraw due to a changing schedule.”

Smith-Cabrera, who has a son at Nathaniel H. Wixon Innovation School and is a freelancer at the Times, will distribute fliers at the Yarmouth candidates night Wednesday at Town Hall, pledging that she will be “the voice for the parents, students and community.” On election day May 17, she plans to distribute stickers that supporters can attach to their ballots.

—Christine Legere

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