EDUCATION

Montgomery College offers summer course on Occupy Wall Street

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Montgomey College is responding after critics accused the school of offering a summer course for high schoolers that would try to recruit them to the Occupy Protest movement.

The school is planning to offer a course called "Occupy MoCo" as part of its Youth Summer Program aimed at kids.

According to a course description posted online, the course is aimed at high schoolers and will take a look at the Occupy Wall Street movement as well as teach about how protests movements are affecting the world.

The final line of the course description has generated controversy:

"Young people hold the power to change their community, their schools, their future -- are you ready to join the movement for justice?"

Critics say it sounds as if the school is trying to indoctrinate and recruit young occupiers.

The controversy has hit blogs and news sites all over the internet, receiving strong reaction.

Some Montgomery College students we talked to say they're concerned about the description.

"It's like, 'Are you ready to join the movement for justice?' That's recruiting someone," said student Cameron Lancon.

The school says this is all a big misunderstanding based on what probably wasn't the best choice of words to describe the course.

Montgomery College Director of Communications Elizabeth Homan says the school isn't taking a stand for or against the Occupy movement, but wants to teach the students about it and other protest movements.

She says on Tuesday the school will change the wording of the course description.

"We've heard from our community that there was some clarity that we needed to provide in our course description, and we're going to correct that," Homan said.

Homan says the school tries to describe its summer courses in a way that will excite kids. For instance, one of the many other classes is called Battle-Bot-Build-a-Thon in which kids can "build a robot that can clobber its opponent in our sumo-style robot ring."

They say the person who wrote the course description for "Occupy MoCo" was trying to make it sound exciting, but didn't realize some would find their choice of words objectionable.

ABC7 was unable to reach "Occupy MoCo" listed teacher Nehal Singhal. Montgomery College officials say to their knowledge, she has not been a part of the Occupy movement.

 

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