In February remaining yr, Samoa’s Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele was photographed along Warren Meyer, the “humanitarian ambassador” for a group known as Applied Scholastics.
The have been keeping a textbook titled Learning How To Learn — considered one of 10,000 copies gifted to the small Pacific island country.
But the friendly photograph belies a more weird and complex reality.
The good deal-wished educational sources for the youngsters of Samoa were in truth books containing the teachings of L Ron Hubbard, the founding father of the arguable Church of Scientology.
It has now been found out — thanks to an investigation by the Samoa Observer published in advance this week — that there are as a minimum six schools in Samoa the usage of these teaching strategies.
Applied Scholastics have additionally informed the ABC that greater than a dozen Samoan educators have traveled to the organization’s headquarters in Missouri for education.
The deeply Christian island state of Samoa can also appear an not going destination for Scientology to promote its teachings, but it is simply one in every of many some distance-off corners of the globe Applied Scholastics is in search of to make bigger to.
It claims to already be operating in 70 nations — together with schools and facilities right here in Australia.
But consistent with critics, Applied Scholastics is quite of a Trojan horse for nonsecular indoctrination and is being covertly rolled out across the globe.
David Touretzky is an educational and researcher at Carnegie Mellon University who has spent years uncovering and criticizing the workings of the Church of Scientology and its partner companies.
“One of the motives it is objectionable is that it is covert nonsecular training, it is teaching humans Scientology,” he advised the ABC.
But the organization is likewise believed to be exaggerating its reach and the success of its operations, an advertising ploy professionals say is geared toward shoring up donations lower back within the United States.
Study Tech a shape of ‘covert religious training’
Applied Scholastics turned into established in 1972 via Church of Scientology participants and is one among many umbrella companies that difficult to understand or outright deny their hyperlinks to the Church of Scientology.
The business enterprise claims to be a non-aligned and secular institution “devoted to the extensive implementation of studying gear researched and advanced by way of American writer and educator L Ron Hubbard”.
Applied Scholastics use a teaching method referred to as Study Tech — an idea formed by using Hubbard — which he described as “[Scientology’s] number one bridge to society”.
On its web sites, Applied Scholastics give several “studies reviews” posted by means of the organization itself while highlighting a number of anonymous testimonials.
But it would not provide a good deal more than perfunctory detail on how its techniques work or any solid proof to their efficacy, and the fabric’s contents refer heavily to analyzing assignments and generalized or simplistic physical activities to decorate mastering which include searching up the definitions of phrases that readers do not apprehend.
“Your ability to study relies upon on a willingness to learn. The biggest unmarried block to gaining knowledge of is your selection which you already realize all about it,” a sample of Study Tech’s work reads.
According to Dr. Touretzky, Study Tech is not supported with the aid of any legitimate scientists or educators.
“You can not discover any school of education or psychology department inside the international that supports those ideas — the simplest vicinity where those ideas are taught are within the spiritual scripture of the Church of Scientology,” he stated.
‘Not part of the Church of Scientology’: Applied Scholastics
Applied Scholastics have constantly rejected allegations that it takes guidelines from the Church of Scientology, and a spokesperson told the ABC it became an independent employer that is “no longer part of the Church of Scientology or another religious agency”.
However, the spokesperson did say the Church of Scientology’s “parishioners are a number of the largest supporters of Applied Scholastics sports” and that donations funded its headquarters in St Louis, Missouri.
According to its website which the spokesperson referred the ABC too for more records, Applied Scholastics is administered with the aid of the Association for Better Living and Education (ABLE), any other institution created and managed by using the Church.
ABLE oversees and manages a handful of packages — Applied Scholastics, Narconon, Criminon and The Way To Happiness — and says that its “undertaking is to rid the world of its most devastating social ills — illiteracy, capsules, crime, and immorality — through the social betterment strategies and concepts of creator and humanitarian L Ron Hubbard.”
Tony Ortega, a distinguished Scientology critic, and author, stated ABLE’s firms act as surrogates for Scientology’s ideology, and also are staffed by way of participants of Sea Org, the spiritual arm of the Church of Scientology.
“ABLE is the important thing — Applied Scholastics cannot do whatever without ABLE’s approval,” Mr. Ortega said, including that the Church has used umbrella corporations for decades in a bid to obfuscate its activities.
In Australia, there are at least two schools using the work of Applied Scholastics: Yarralinda Primary School, an early studying center in Melbourne, and the Athena School in Sydney.