“American public schools and its education leaders are under immediate threat. “
So begins the recent National School Board Association letter to the Biden administration asking for help and criminal investigations of protesting parents at school board meetings and others. to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes posing a serious threat to the functioning of school boards, teachers, administrators and anyone else associated with our public schools. ”
What is happening here is an attempt to silence parents who are upset with much of what passes for education these days, such as Critical Race Theory, which everyone knows is sidelined. t is infiltrated into our schools, is supported by the teachers’ unions and refused by the school. signs like “propaganda”. Gaslighting 101. Any group that shows up at school board meetings to oppose this or anything else are “hate groups”.
Rather than pulling more quotes and using my word quota, I urge you to go online and read it. It will only take a few minutes and will be rewarded by revealing how much of a document of pity, whining and threat it is.
This letter is, however, very revealing of themes which have been present for a very long time in our schools and our society. Over a century ago, with Saint John Dewey, who almost single-handedly started the ball rolling for American public education, schools were to be wrested from parental and local control and placed in the hands of ‘professional and accredited teachers. and administrators.
Schools would no longer be focused on individual development and achievement but, like the Prussian system so admired by Dewey, schools would be designed to meet the needs of the state, not the needs of the student, not the wishes or to the values of parents. Woodcutters and water drawers were what the modern state needed, no more doctors, lawyers, poets, preachers and philosophers. A few private schools operating on the English model would take care of this and become the preserve of the upper classes, as the system remains to this day.
But in addition to training practical workers, Dewey was also interested in remaking the student’s core beliefs. Dewey was a militant atheist and considered any elementary student who believed in Christianity or any other revealed religion to be mentally ill, with the school’s role in healing the child. So, as you may have noticed, over the last century all references to traditional religion have been pulled, root and branch, from our public schools. As a surrogate religion, everything that was useful to the state had to be instilled, i.e. secular materialism, to which was attached any sub-issue considered important at the time, such as the destruction of traditional sexual morals, recycling, environmentalism, and now things like critical race theory and the denigration of the American experience and everything it and the West have traditionally stood for.
Unsurprisingly, more than a few parents got loud (some a little too loudly, admittedly) and belatedly started to grow back. It has always amazed me that it has taken so long, and our public school leaders are very, very worried. Home schools are on the rise. Private schools not exclusively reserved for the rich are also developing. “Choice”, a sacred right if you are going to kill a child, a serious threat to our public schools if you are going to educate a child, these aforementioned education leaders are fighting tooth and nail.
So what to do? Obviously, take your child out of public schools that you find offensive. Unfortunately, it will cost money.
In the next election, you can organize and present a list of school board members who disagree with the current state of affairs. You can go to jail in the process, if Attorney General Merrick Garland has what he wants, but at least you’ll know you’ve made a valiant effort.
Charles Milliken is Professor Emeritus after 22 years of teaching economics and related subjects at the University of Siena Heights. He can be reached at [email protected]