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Friday, July 29, 2005

Nine Assumptions of Government Schooling

Here are 9 assumptions that John Taylor Gatto provides to us about government education. They are inherently wrong on many levels. Not only are they endemic in that they are folded into the fabric of socialism, the press, the political landscape, and secondary academia, but that if one brings up honest debate about them, they are branded as anti-education and anti-child.

1. Social cohesion is not possible through other means than government schooling; school is the main defense against social chaos.
2. Children cannot learn to tolerate each other unless first socialized by government agents.
3. The only safe mentors of children are certified experts with government-approved conditioning; children must be protected from the uncertified, including parents.
4. Compelling children to violate family, cultural and religious norms does not interfere with the development of their intellects or characters.
5. In order to dilute parental influence, children must be disabused of the notion that mother and father are sovereign in morality or intelligence.
6. Families should be encouraged to expend concern on the general education of everyone but discouraged from being unduly concerned with their own children's education.
7. The State has predominant responsibility for training, morals and beliefs. Children who escape state scrutiny will become immoral.
8. Children from families with different beliefs, backgrounds and styles must be forced together even if those beliefs violently contradict one another. Robert Frost, the poet, was wrong when he maintained that "good fences make good neighbors."
9. Coercion in the name of liberty is a valid use of state power.

These assumptions and a few others associated with them lead directly to the shape, style and exercise of school politics. And these primary assumptions generate secondary assumptions which fuel the largely phony school debate played out in American journalism, a debate where the most important questions like "What is the end that justifies these means?" are never asked.

In the Know @ Ontheborderline