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Re: digest #242 (on education)

Jun 24, 1998 01:00 AM
by Kym Smith

Annette wrote:

>Every point you make is appreciated.  I guess my trouble is that when I
>think of something being new or evolutionary I make the gross assumption
>that it will be different from what humans have done before and what
>they could see had failed.

Rather than seeing your idealism as "trouble," I see it as refreshing and a
sincere concern.

Problem seems to be that a few others do not recognize nor care to ponder
whether there is any bit of "trouble" in their way of thinking on this issue
- are they trying to benefit children or themselves?  Many adults tend to
see children as mini-clones of themselves. . .and end up simply mucking it
all up. . .or worse.

>And I just must add that although public schools are open to all,
>whether all are welcomed in reality and whether no favourites are played
>truthfully is a matter of perception.

True, but that appears to be an individual teacher or school principal
problem - not the public-school philosophy in general.  You're right, though
- for example: it is well known that boys are given much more attention by
teachers than girls are. . .many studies by sociologists have reflected this.

>The threat of private schools taking money away from the public ones may
>appear unsavoury, but, if I was faced with the choice of sending a child
>of mine to a public school in which s/he may get shot to death or at
>least fails to learn because of living in fear of other students, and a
>safe non-chaotic alternative, I'm pretty sure which I'd choose and I'd
>bust my ass to earn the money to pay for it, which is what I see all the
>Execs and many of the "workers" in my company doing.

I understand - but there are many mothers who "bust their ass" and still are
not able to afford private school.  Those parents who remove their children
from public schools are really just making it worse for those children who
are forced to stay.  If the Execs and other employees of your company kept
their children in the public schools, they could be more involved and aware
of the problems.  They would, since their children were there, be more
motivated to solve such problems - and many more children would receive the
education all children deserve.

My main point is: whether we like it or not, the children in private school
will eventually come FACE TO FACE with the children from public school no
matter what anyone does. . .due to the success of the "them vs. us" theory,
hopefully, it won't be in a dark alley.

>propaganda, authoritarianism and prejudice are and would be part of the
>curriculum, and what better way to eradicate them in the long term than
>by insisting that a young learner follow them to the letter?

I don't quite understand what you are saying here - could you please further
explain what you mean?  Are you saying we should put children under the yoke
of authoritarianiam and prejudice and that will turn them off so much that
they will not practice it as adults?  If so, how does one explain the
success of the Hitler Youth?  Have I misunderstood you?


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