Today I participated in a ritual celebrated by parents all across the country this time of year. The weeks prior to the Blessed Event are spent in a shopping flurry with much joyful anticipation, or dread, depending on one’s perspective. Women will fling back the shutters on their windows and step blinking onto their porches into the sunshine. It’s a new day! Order and peace in the universe are restored.
The kids are back in school. (Two of them in our home, anyway.)
But I’m far from doing the Snoopy Happy Dance because I really miss them. Yes, I am looking forward to some rare “me” time while they’re in school. And I am a big fan of schedules; I’m just wired that way.
The other day, I read a thoughtful article entitled, “Imagine Teaching Your Kids At Home.” I appreciate the guy’s honesty- he and his wife aren’t so certain they’re willing to sacrifice the income and time freedom to home educate their kids. Homeschooling ISN’T for everyone.
But it made me consider once again how radical compulsory schooling is. 150 or so years ago an article entitled “Imagine Sending Your Kids To School” would have been considered insanity. Families lived, worked and learned together.
Like the frog in the heating pot of water, over the years, we’ve accepted our radical schooling models as normal…even healthy.
Yes, I know, times change. Which makes it even more imperative that our current factory-based models for education get a complete overhaul. Our kids are not prepared to enter today’s redefined (and outsourced) workplace!
The government sure as hell isn’t going to fix the problems; they created a lot of this mess. And even with great people on local school boards; their hands are tied too. (Remember the words of that sage, Mark Twain, “In the first place, God made idiots. That was for practice. Then he made school boards.”)
It’s going to have to start in the home. How’s that for a radical idea?