Education

Viewpoint Diversity Gets a Boost as Families Flee Public Schools

Independent education means a wide range of approaches as to what children are taught.

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Earlier this year, The New York Times looked at different editions of the same public-school textbooks published in California and Texas and found them spun in opposite directions to suit the ideological tastes of the dominant political factions in those states. It was a handy summary of the long-raging curriculum wars that have seen politicians and activists battling to present their preferred interpretations of the world to the captive audiences in America's classrooms.

Those are wars which many families will escape this fall as the pandemic and school closures push parents to assume responsibility for teaching their own children and, not incidentally, to pass along their own views and not those prepackaged by government officials. For all the damage COVID-19 and the fumbling human responses to the virus are doing, viewpoint diversity may actually get a boost.

America's public-school textbooks, the Times story explained, reflect the country's polarization.

"The books have the same publisher. They credit the same authors. But they are customized for students in different states, and their contents sometimes diverge in ways that reflect the nation's deepest partisan divides," Dana Goldstein wrote for the Times in January of this year. "Classroom materials are not only shaded by politics, but are also helping to shape a generation of future voters," she added.

Shaping a generation of future voters is exactly what many government officials have in mind. Children taught to believe the "correct" things will grow up to vote the "correct" way—or so authorities hope.

Goldstein's own newspaper joined the fray with its tendentious 1619 Project, which portrays the United States as irreparably stained by racism and slavery, and free-market economics as rooted in human bondage. The project has been turned into classroom materials over the objections of historians who charge it with "a displacement of historical understanding by ideology" and despite the insistence of Nikole Hannah-Jones, the reporter who led the project, that "the 1619 Project is using history and reporting to make an argument. It never pretended to be a history."

No wonder, as the Cato Institute points out in the intro to its Public Schooling Battle Map, that "rather than build bridges, public schooling often forces people into wrenching conflict."

But government-run schools are going to have a smaller captive audience this year. While they've been slowly losing ground for a long time to charter schools, private schools, and homeschooling, many of them alienated large numbers of families this spring with clumsy responses to the spread of COVID-19. Fumbled implementation of distance learning, cavalier attitudes toward work done remotely, and confusion over when and how (and even if) schools will reopen have parents looking to alternatives.

Interest is way up now across the country in charter schools, private schools, and, especially, various DIY approaches including homeschooling and learning pods or microschools. To millions of families, these independent options hold out a better chance of delivering education safely and effectively than government institutions that keep dropping the ball and are too bureaucratic to handle a world in flux.

Independent education also means a wide range of approaches as to what children are taught, far beyond the red vs. blue, Texas vs. California choice in government-selected textbooks. Parents choosing their children's education select options that suit them and, to the extent that they care, convey their values or, at least, don't offend their sensibilities.

Some people, of course, don't want children to be taught parents' ideas rather than those of the local ruling party.

"Parents who are ideologically committed to raising children in isolation from the larger society, with views and values counter to much of the education provided in public schools, are not going to be willing or able to provide an education comparable to what schools provide," argues Harvard Law School's Elizabeth Bartholet in a much-discussed Arizona Law Review article.

Bartholet favors a "presumptive ban" on homeschooling and believes "policymakers should impose greater restrictions on private schools for many of the same reasons that they should restrict homeschooling."

Interestingly, Bartholet's attack on parents who teach their kids "views and values counter to much of the education provided in public schools" was published around the same time The New York Times revealed the spin different textbook review committees put on the materials with which students are taught in government schools. Clearly, she and her allies are OK with ideological content in education—so long as it's chosen by political officials, not children and parents.

Specifically, opponents of independent education often decry religious and reactionary views among homeschoolers and private schoolers. Those are the viewpoints most typically fingered as being at odds with what is taught in government schools.

But families opting for different educational paths are increasingly likely to be secular. The percentage of homeschoolers identifying themselves as religious in North Carolina, which keeps especially detailed statistics, dropped from 78.3 percent in 1988-1989 to 56.5 percent in 2019-2020 even as the total number of registered home schools (many serving multiple students) rose from 1,385 to 94,863.

And rather than serve as conduits for reactionary views, very often "black parents homeschool to remove their children from what they see as a racially hostile environment" in government schools, reports Mahala Dyer Stewart, a professor of Sociology at Hamilton College. "The middle-class black mothers I interviewed say that despite their college education, salaries and advocacy on behalf of their children, they were unable to protect their children from the racial hostilities at school."

Importantly, "greater exposure to private schooling instead of traditional public schooling is not associated with any more or less political tolerance, and greater exposure to homeschooling is associated with more political tolerance," according to research published in 2014 by the Journal of School Choice.

In fact, families that choose independent education are much more diverse in many ways than their critics pretend. So are Americans in general, who possess a range of views more varied and interesting than you'd guess if you went by the two legacy political parties that battle over school curricula and dominate the boards that review textbooks.

This year, as growing numbers of those diverse American families take responsibility for their children's education away from failing government institutions, they'll also take responsibility for the contents of that education. The result is going to be an increased range of opinions, values, and interpretations to be shared and debated by students who otherwise would have been doomed to a force-feeding of officially approved ideas. The pandemic may be threatening our health and breaking our economy, but it may, ultimately, expand our minds.

NEXT: Today in Supreme Court History: July 29, 1942

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  1. I can’t wait for the new stay at home parents on the east coast to learn the Kindergarten “even 5 year olds masturbate and change sex” lesson plans.

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    2. My niece said she just learned this about her upcoming preschool year in Virginia where parents of remote education children were responsible for instructing the child how to masturbate. They are moving to Florida. This is the shit they used to arrest people for.

      1. Hey Jesse

        Do people on the west coast and arizona masturbate?

        Last I know the children up to, well you know, do not need lessons.

        So can we just leave it there?

        1. Well, right. One would think masturbation would not need to be taught. Once the person is an adult they can read the kama sutra or whatever if they want advice.

          I’ve never heard of a school doing it but I did encounter a therapist who explained to a pre-teen male client how to do it involving lotion. I’m not sure the young person completely understood the situation and there were significant lotion-related problems in multiple settings for some time after that. The kid finally got tired of the lotion problems and combination gave up/evolved something that worked better for him, which of course is the point. If I hadn’t seen this happen myself I would have trouble believing it. People want children’s behavior to be a) standardized and b) accepted and supported, to the extent that there are privacy violations. The flip side of this is the first grader humping people’s legs at school, who can’t be told to stop because “exploration is normal.” Something’s broken.

        2. I certainly masturbated in Arizona. Man. Way too much.

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  2. Harvard Law School’s Elizabeth Bartholet … favors a “presumptive ban” on homeschooling and believes “policymakers should impose greater restrictions on private schools for many of the same reasons that they should restrict homeschooling.”

    Straight up tyranny. She might as well be Mao for this naked push of mandatory political indoctrination. Utterly disgusting.

    1. They’re not even pretending anymore. And apparently they don’t need to.

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    2. “Parents who are ideologically committed to raising children in isolation from the larger society, with views and values counter to much of the education provided in public schools, are not going to be willing or able to provide an education comparable to what schools provide,”

      She says that like it’s a bad thing. They are children, not miniature adults. The entire country was founded on different views and values, and few homeschool parents even try for something “comparable”. And most of the time they are far superior. Never settle for sub-mediocre when superior is an option.

    3. Its is not indoctrination – it is re-education, as in re-education camps. They are tired of having to undo all of the bad-think that the parents have embedded in the children before the professionals get hold of them.

      Since they don’t have any other plans for narrowing the various educational divides, after everything else had failed, I think that the next stage will be to remove all children from their biological parents at birth, and re-assign them to other “parents” chosen at random. That should ensure that all of the different racial and gender categories get an equal chance to succeed.

      1. Oh, and the new parents will have to go to re-education camps, too, to make sure that they learn how to properly raise children. After all, it takes a village to raise a child.

  3. I have long thought home schooling, and even charter schools to an extent, would be the savior of the country, eliminating one huge bastion of government indoctrination. College indoctrination doesn’t bother me nearly as much, since it’s so blatantly dysfunctional, teaching useless subjects that can’t persist once an income becomes necessary.

    I still believe that, but the pandemic has rushed it much faster than I had expected. A wonderful silver lining, and an own-goal by the proggies to boot — so short-sighted with their rush to lockdown, to show how powerful and sciencey they all were.

    I really hope this takes off and wakes up parents.

    1. College indoctrination doesn’t bother me nearly as much

      If you choose to indoctrinate yourself, hey, you be you. Primary and secondary schooling are another matter.

      1. Exactly. College is this weird construct that serves little purpose for most students. Four years of goofing off in political science or sociology to get that sheepskin that employers use to prove you can spend four years in pointless work. What if student loans were changed to “young adult” loans, for want of a better word? Use them to start a business; get vocational training; tour Europe; subsidize yourself to entice employers into hiring cheap workers, sort of a self-apprenticeship. Not that I think government should be loaning anyone money, or guaranteeing any loans; but what if?

        I bet it would only take 5-10 years for the majority of loans to not be used in college, but in opening businesses or apprenticing yourself as cheap labor. My experience with co-workers is that the best beginning workers are those who didn’t graduate with useless degrees. They either got a real degree (whether or not it was related to what they eventually did for a career) or had taught themselves or worked on their own.

        1. That’s an interesting thought experiment (young-adult loans), and one I had never really thought of. Though, I bet the majority of loans would not be used on direct college expenses, opening businesses, or self-apprenticeships. Most loans would probably be used on consumer goods/services to increase living standards (nicer car, nicer apartment, eating out, etc.)… kind of how student loans work right now.

          1. That would be fine with me, as long as these loans remain bankruptcy proof. I have a problem with government loans, but as long as they exist, might as well try to reform them. If a high school graduate wants to buy a tow truck, plumbing apprenticeship, machine tools, cattle, a Subway franchise, or anything similar to get a start in life, that’s a better investment than four years in a sociology degree.

            1. Yeah, I understand your reasoning; I just don’t share your optimism. Today, student loans are partially used to finance degrees in engineering, accounting, business, etc. Probably a larger proportion finance sociology and humanities degrees. In your hypothetical, some loans would finance start-up capital and skills training, but I suspect a much larger proportion would finance delayed entrance into the workforce and subsidized social activism. It’s easier to spend time and effort on the “fight for fifteen” when you’ve got low-interest, government backed loans paying your rent.

              1. That’s true. But everything is relative, and today the only options are a hard degree (STEM) or a useless degree which leaves too much time to waste. What if there were an alternative? What if these sociology majors could watch their friends do something useful instead? Some would bail and do something real. I am optimistic that within a few years, 5-10-20, there’d be a lot fewer students just partying and protesting on their way to a useless degree.

                1. Possibly. I think a much more likely and simple means of achieving that end is to severely curtail federally subsidized higher education, rather than expanding it beyond traditional educational institutions.

                  1. Bureaucracies never shrink, always expand. I’d love to get the government out of the loan business, out of the school business, out of lots of things. I doubt that will ever happen.

                    1. Yeah, there’s just no way I could get behind such a drastic and immediate expansion as what we’re discussing though.

                      There may actually be an opportunity to roll-back federal student loans in the near future. With the growing political movement for student-loan forgiveness, a compromise might be reached whereby stricter limits and caps are set on subsidized education loans in exchange for some overall amount of loan forgiveness.

                      To be clear, I’m opposed to student-loan forgiveness at all. However, I think it may be an inevitability at this point. The public might have to confront the reality that the “student debt crisis” was absolutely a consequence of the student loan program, thereby creating some political will for rollbacks.

                    2. Just as a note, while I agree with Farnham there is the additional point that without a single price setter in the market (colleges in this case) you wouldn’t see such a massive inflation in cost either so while the number of frivolously spent loans would probably be much higher, the value of each of those loans would also likely be smaller. At least int he short run, until a new raft of price setters learn how to inflate the price.

                2. If you don’t go into a STEM field, you should be required to do pubic service, in the military or in public service manual labor for 2 years, before you can get a loan for a sociology or arts school.

          2. Exactly. My own daughter uses her vet school loans for vacations

          3. As a landlord near a university, I can assure you that the majority of student loans are not now used for direct college expenses. They are available in lump sum and to be used at the student’s discretion, which is why many live in very nice apartments and houses, eat out twice a day, and seemingly never run out of cash until the electric bill is due.

            Part of the trick to managing such loans is to do it the way a construction loan is used. Get a loan to build a house or a car, and you don’t get the option of buying a Lamborghini or a week in Vale instead. You aren’t trusted with the bank’s assets like that. Similarly, if such loans are used to buy hard assets in a business and are committed to the lender, you don’t get to dispose of them at your whim. Collateral purchases aren’t that difficult a concept.

        2. The problem with people determining the direction of their own education is that people don’t know what they don’t know. The first four years of college, in my opinion, are about getting to a properly skeptical place as well as introducing you to a range of ideas you may never have even known existed. It would be best if everyone got that education, and it’s the natural trajectory of civilized education anyway, even if we just consider it vocational training.

          1. The first four years of college, in my opinion, are about getting to a properly skeptical place as well as introducing you to a range of ideas you may never have even known existed.

            That was accomplished by 8th grade 100 years ago.

          2. A disturbing fraction of the people I knew over the course of college were a) there for the coke and hookers b) became addicts c) had breakdowns and never recovered d) suicided. America eats its young but the college process as currently operated provides a strong assist. Now, I love academic libraries, love love love them, and the process of wandering the stacks has borne fruit for me so many times, I proselytize against the use of the “electronic card catalog” except at the very beginning of the journey, for precisely the reason you mentioned; young people don’t know what they don’t know. You don’t know what search terms to type into the search bar yet if you don’t know much about the subject; get a call number, walk to the bookshelf, sit on one of those little rolling stools and start reading. After a few hours, then you know what to type into the search bar, and you can keep that process going until the due date. But no one fully knows what they don’t know, that’s part of the human condition. The process of learning to look outward and seek information can start much younger than 18. I think some homeschooling families manage that, to teach kids they can ask questions and get a real-world answer that’s also open-ended. Sitting in large classrooms involves either intentionally looking away from the negative human dynamics playing out all around you, or getting drawn into analyzing them, which never ends but might not be the career you’re best suited for. I could go on; I do agree it is important for people to be made aware of the scope of human thought and history. I’m not sure “college” is the right way.

    2. “and an own-goal by the proggies to boot . . .”
      Great line!

  4. Yesterday, the local school board president was whining at a forum with state legislators that they stop creating new charter schools because the public school loses money every time a student drops out in favor of charter school. Boo Hoo.

    1. Yeah that one is bogus if one looks at the big picture and not the money games played by gov’ts and school systems. For every student that drops out, there is one fewer student to have to teach and for whom to provide facilities/services. Overall costs decrease. Student-to-teacher ratios improve. (Though “economies of scale” could eventually be a problem once people wise up enough t the folly of one-size-fits-all education.)

    2. It’s pure nonsense. The long story is that schools adjust both up and down based on demand, just like anything else. And just like anything else that the government runs, the bigger it is, the more money and power is available.

      From a political perspective, bigger = more public school teachers = more teachers union power = more votes. It’s not hard to calculate, even with common core math.

      1. Agreed. The local school boards complaints highlight the reality of how much per pupil spending goes to the bloated administrative costs and negotiated salaries and benefits for teachers vs the actual student. If the majority of resources went to the student it would not be such a dire issue. Also, as more parents opt out of the system the teachers union leverage decreases. And the poor kids are the ACE of spades since allegedly everything that the teachers union want is for benefit of “the children.”

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  6. “Parents who are ideologically committed to raising children in isolation from the larger society, with views and values counter to much of the education provided in public schools, are not going to be willing or able to provide an education comparable to what schools provide,” argues Harvard Law School’s Elizabeth Bartholet in a much-discussed Arizona Law Review article.

    An education comparable to these Baltimore high schools?

    Achievement Academy, Carver Vocational-Technical High, Coppin Academy, Excel Acadamy, Forest Park High, Frederick Douglass High, Independence School Local 1, Knowledge and Success Academy, New Era Academy, New Hope Academy, Northwestern High, Patterson High, The Reach! Partnership School

    These high schools had ZERO students proficient in math in the last standardized test. 8 other schools rocked it with 1% proficient.

    1. Sure, but it’s never about being efficient or good. It’s just about being “comparable” or equal, even if it’s 0=0.

  7. vouchers, vouchers, vouchers, vouchers, vouchers, and with zero strings.

    1. Or just let people keep their labors (i.e. money) and the really needy can visit their local welfare office.

  8. >>are not going to be willing or able to provide an education comparable to what schools provide

    wow fuck you, Harvard Law School’s Elizabeth Bartholet

    1. She went to Radcliffe and Harvard. You think she ever set foot in a public school?

      1. unlikley. field hockey likely.

      2. You think she ever set foot in a public school?

        Sounds like she could stand to have her worldview adjusted by someone with the minimal verbal skills necessary to get through public schooling.

    2. Comparable has never been a goal of homeschool or private school. Being superior is actually the reason that most parents pull their kids out of the race to sub-mediocre equality.

  9. Good stuff, Tuccille. But I’m curious why the NRA isn’t commenting on this topic-did you reach out to them for comment?

    1. Dude, c’mon. We already know the reason is because they’re racist.

  10. Oprah backing a project that bashes free markets is precious. But she’s an expert on human bondage. Anyone remember the slave labor camps she founded in South Africa? Of course she claims she had no idea her attempt to employ black South African schoolgirls wasn’t legit. Either she’s a moron who got lucky with the stock market or she’s utterly evil.

    1. Either she’s a moron who got lucky with the stock market

      She made her money in television and magazines. I’ll withhold comment on the evil part.

      1. Her first TV show rivaled Jerry Springer as to how low you could go just to get some ratings. It only aired in Chicago, IIRC.

  11. Down with “commie education”… It’s about bloody time children started learning how to build their own house, fix their own car, clean houses, program computers, change a light-bulb, grow their own food, operate machinery (and what is available), change a flat tire, balance an account, handle money respectably, how to get along with others, the Constitution ( governments responsibilities and whats NOT governments responsibility ), change a chain on a bicycle, maintenance, the difference between positive investment and junk……

    NOT ONE of which is taught “commie education”. Nope, today’s “commie education” is almost entirely “the government is god so anything that happens or doesn’t happen is governments fault/responsibility”.

  12. What a goddamn mess rightwingers have turned this into.

    I remember when being on the right meant opposing a postmodern relativistic conception of truth. Now truth is whatever stupid-ass superstition they want to shove down our kids’ throats. “Viewpoint diversity.” That’s like a parody of what progressives believe. It’s always so cute when Republicans try to appropriate their rhetoric.

    The 1619 project (which is just a text, right?) is not really challenged on factual grounds. It’s challenged on the grounds that Republicans don’t want to FEEL bad about Amurica in any way that challenges their infantile pseudo-patriotic FEELINGS. I don’t think it says the US is irredeemable. I think that’s probably a false characterization.

    1. “Viewpoint diversity” as used here is not appropriation… dumbass. It’s mockery. It’s shoving it back down your own throat, but obviously you were in the lower half of your public school class and just too dim to spot it. As in “you want viewpoint diversity, here’s your viewpoint diversity… dumbass. But now you don’t want it do you… dumbass”.

    2. I’m a libertarian and after having diversity shoved down my throat as pertaining to ethnicity, I’m pretty damn tired of being told I have to respect someone’s regurgitated mindless viewpoint because their skin color is different than mine. Diversity of ideology and the sharing of it is the basis of western civilization. Attacking this proves is proof positive of how valuable it actually is.

      1. Spot on AprilJ. I’m black and I appreciate the honesty. I think many of us feel the same but have been made to feel we are betraying our own kind to admit it. Ultimately we don’t care if you respect our worldview. This idea that the world will improve for the downtrodden if we all believe the same things, support the same causes, and worship at the alter of liberalism with no exception is nonsense. Unless someone logically explains how getting some random person fired from their job and ostracized from society, destroying statues, and making cities less safe improves my life and livelihood, I’m not interested in the tired virtue signaling and useless propaganda.

    3. The 1619 project (which is just a text, right?) is not really challenged on factual grounds. It’s challenged on the grounds that Republicans don’t want to FEEL bad about Amurica in any way that challenges their infantile pseudo-patriotic FEELINGS.

      I don’t care what you say, Forrest Gump is a compelling historical documentary about a self-absorbed progressive white bitch who’s only happiness in life was giving AIDS to her retarded husband and son.

  13. Now we just need someone to justify requiring child-free citizens to support with income taxes and various credits the breeders’ whim to rear children who get subsidized babysitting so that their parents are freed-up to compete against us on the job market.

    1. That has already been going on for decades.
      Teachers’ Unions realized a long time ago that having an aged population in a school district means more money available, but less interest in giving that money to public schools, since older people don’t have dependents in the school system.
      Progressives have come up with all sorts of schemes to force people with no children in school to have to pay for those who do.

    2. I agree with you and always have. I have two children and have paid privately to educate my last one and now homeschool on my own dime all the way. I do not believe in taxing property owners to indoctrinate and babysit children. I want my money back also. I pay for someone else and I get little rioting “activists” out of it which certainly isn’t adding to my community.

      1. I want my money back also.

        Yeah, to make it a breeders vs. non-breeders issue is exceedingly divisive.

  14. “ideological tastes of the dominant political factions”: factions are populated by parents.
    “politicians and activists battling”: the former elected by, the latter are, parents.
    “parents to assume responsibility…. those prepackaged by government officials”
    The latter elected by the former.
    “many government officials… to vote the “correct” way—or so authorities hope.”
    The officials and the authorities are elected and empowered by the parents; the protests racking the country indicate a failure of that “hope” for “’correct’”-ness.
    “1619 Project”: Up to the parents to elect a school board that ensures the historians’, as well as the advocates’, arguments are presented.
    “’wrenching conflict ‘”: OMG: arguments rather than acquiescence! No conflicts in 1984 or Pleasantville.
    “smaller captive audience “: as the parents permit.
    “Parents choosing their children’s education select options that ….convey their values or, at least, don’t offend their sensibilities.” Offensive options like evolution, other religions, doctors, A Catcher in the Rye, single-sex relationships, STD’s….
    “parents’ ideas”. Like the idea that prayer can cure pulmonary hypertension, bowel blockage, infections, any disease? That people of another color or faith are damned?
    “would have been doomed to a force-feeding of officially approved ideas ” For “officially” substitute “parentally”, since the parents elect the school board and the “authorities”.

    1. Do you have to work that hard to be ignorant, or are you just a product of public education?

      Only about 40% of adult households actually have children under 18. There goes your majority. Which might explain why 30% see enough problems with the public education system that they pull their kids out. And 90% couldn’t tell you the name of a single school board candidate before they walk into a voting booth and pull the lever with their favorite initial next to it, or the ones they’ve seen the most yard signs for.

      I’d go on, but genius as you are, but you’re going to need a lot of time just to process the numbers above.

  15. I’m at a complete loss as to how the same person can argue vehemently that a child has an inalienable right to state-controlled education, but at the same time does everything they can to ensure the same child’s sibling can be legally killed in the womb.
    Which is it?
    Do kids have rights or not?

    1. They do if they’re born to left leaning immunity denying pro- vax YOUR kid for MY safety.
      Yeah, it’s all hypocritical crap isn’t it?

    2. I don’t necessarily think this is a sufficient argument, but you should!

      “Abortion is a moral right—which should be left to the sole discretion of the woman involved; morally, nothing other than her wish in the matter is to be considered. Who can conceivably have the right to dictate to her what disposition she is to make of the functions of her own body?”

      –Ayn Rand

      1. I know you probably learned English and rhetoric in a public school but, the use of ‘same person’ and ‘the womb’ strongly implies ‘3rd party’, ‘outside observer’, or ‘other than the parent’. Otherwise he would’ve said something more along the lines of ‘same parent’ and/or ‘their own womb’.

        That is, your public education failed to scrub your silly religious ideology from your mind so you make the mistakes of an ideological zealot and assume his issue is with abortion rather than the distinction between two applications of parental discretion.

        Unless you’ve got a quote from Rand saying that every kid should attend public school Rand’s statement isn’t inconsistent reardensteel’s issue. Maybe if you’d actually grokked Rand (it’s not that hard) rather than refusing to read it and cribbing quotes off the internet like a 7th grader, you wouldn’t be such an embarassing example of your family/community’s education methods.

      2. What about The Science?!

        Okay, my body, my choice. My face is my body. I should be able to chose what to put on or not put on my face.

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  17. Taxpayer-funded schools at which children’s attendance is required by law have no business teaching anything besides reading, writing and arithmetic. Actually, they have no business existing.
    History, civics, etc. are nothing but indoctrination.

    1. The historical fact that Calculus was invented independently by two guys at basically the same time is…indoctrination? The Civics lesson that explains that Senate has two members per state in order to appease small states is… indoctrination? Wow if your kids avoid all that indoctrination they are going to be really ignorant about a lot of basic features of the world.

      1. Well unless your children all grow up to be professional Jeopardy superstars – the ‘factoids’ about Calculus is utterly useless in life. Understanding government (which coincidentally few graduates of public school even currently know) is important but hardly important enough for legislative gun forces.

        No-one should support government legislation if they themselves aren’t willing to point guns at people to enforce their “wish” because that is what government uses and pretending that having a 3rd party do it for them is somehow void of the realities of their “wishes” is deceptively dishonest.

        I.e. Would you clear-of-consensus show up at your neighbors house with a gun and threaten them with death if they don’t send their children to your commie school? Seems a lot of people don’t understand the gun-force should only be used to enforce individual justice and defense.

  18. Homeschooling my child (MY hand picked curriculum) has been the best thing to come out of Covid for my family. In my neck of the woods, public and private are all left, lefter and leftist.

    1. I agree with you. I’m hoping however, that there aren’t a lot of parents who do this who aren’t capable or resolved to the task. Homeschooling yields the most academically successful kids of any system anywhere. But polluting it with those who should not be doing it would lower the success averages significantly and potentially serve it up as “the next big thing we must get rid of because suddenly there are a lot of failures”.

      1. This is my concern too. I homeschooled my daughter for 8th grade in 2018-2019. It was hard because I we had to do a lot of review on math and science, but in the end she went into 9th grade above grade level and even put into honors math. We are going back to homeschooling at her request. I love her and we are close and work well together. It’s still not easy. For the parents or children. It’s a big commitment and the stakes are high. My main reason for homeschooling is the reality that supporting a grown woman-child is not apart of my retirement plan. I’m on a countdown to being off the clock.

      2. I’m hoping however, that there aren’t a lot of parents who do this who aren’t capable or resolved to the task.

        That is what Bartholet was saying. You received hers with a socialist tint (I did also) while I received yours as a class concern, which reduces to poverty.

  19. The vast majority of the K-12 public school system is an educational failure primarily the result of teachers unions; the resistance to effective teacher evaluations and support for honest and transparent meritocracy – essentially firing the under performers and massively high cost over paid teachers. The US voter and taxpayers are massively overpaying for public school educational outcomes. The current riots, community destruction, antifa etc are the by-product of the failed public school – teacher union linkage. The $1.5 Trillion in Student Debt and the hundreds of Billions in Student debt defaults proves that the teachers did not properly educate their students and help them build useful skill sets. The teacher unions have destroyed their communities, not unlike antifa

  20. Question for the author: Do you know what history is? It’s stuff that happened in the past. That’s it. Everything that happened is history, everything that didn’t isn’t. The two versions of the same textbook—if they disagree on the facts then they both can’t be correct. Either the crippling yoke of enslavers made it infinitely harder for the formerly enslaved to succeed or it didn’t. Either Black people were barred from owning homes through Government-encouraged “covenants” or they weren’t. The problem with traditional history books like those favored in Texas has nothing to do with politics or opinions. They are just factually misleading about what actually occurred. For example, if a Texas history book claims that Christopher Columbus “discovered” America they are -factually wrong-. The people who walked over from Siberia discovered it. There is no debate on who came first. Now I can’t guarantee that California books aren’t full of falsehoods—I haven’t examined their claims. But I know that the Texas books are full of B.S. because I have read their misleading statements. I don’t care if my kids’ history books made Democrats or Republicans feel glad or sad. I just want them to know the truth. And it is vastly misleading to act like Millard Philmore is worth including rather than Sojourner Truth. He did nothing. She was powerfully innovative. That’s not my opinion, it is a fact. So get out of here with your “all history books are just propaganda of the two political parties“ nonsense. History is measured in truth, and the chips will fall where they may for our two political teams. Bill Clinton is factually a horrible sexual predator. So is the current President. This isn’t opinion it’s history.

    1. The people who walked over from Siberia discovered it. There is no debate on who came first.

      There is debate over whether polynesians might have been here first. And, they are finding human artifacts 20,000 years older than the siberian walkers.

    2. Wow, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen an example of somebody so blind to their own biases. Your thoughts on facts vs opinions seem very confused. Where to begin?

      “Either the crippling yoke of enslavers made it infinitely harder for the formerly enslaved to succeed or it didn’t.”
      – Even assuming there were some completely objective method of quantitatively measuring “harder to succeed”, it would be mathematically impossible to conclude an outcome of “infinitely harder.” So this is an opinion based statement.

      Christopher Columbus did, in fact, discover America (though he didn’t realize what he’d discovered at the time). Just because others had discovered it previously and independently, doesn’t preclude it being discovered again by others who had no previous knowledge of it’s existence.

      “He (Philmore) did nothing.”
      – This actually is a fact; though it’s a false fact. He did many things. It is your opinion that none of those things he did merit inclusion into history texts.

      “She (Sojourner) was powerfully innovative. That’s not my opinion, it is a fact.”
      – This, by definition, is an opinion. (not that I think this opinion is wrong)

      “Bill Clinton is factually a horrible sexual predator. So is the current President. This isn’t opinion it’s history.”
      – Again, by definition, opinions. (not that I think these opinions are wrong)

      I am glad though, that you agree with Mr. Tuccille that parents should have the option and ability to educate their children to their own standards, especially when they disagree with the methods of the state…

      Or were you saying that the methods and curriculum of the State of California should be imposed on every family in the nation?

  21. Anyone doubting that public schools focus more on indoctrination than education should read this article. Even Samuel Clemons many years ago said, “I never let my schooling get in the way of my education.” As it is, the idealogs want 100% control. Now for those who do not submit their children to the state, college will be a rough time for them as diversity is encouraged in our universities … so long as it is not diversity of thought. This was the rallying cry around a recent Harvard anti-home schooling conference:
    “The state needs to be the ultimate guarantor of a child’s well-being. There’s just no alternative to that. The reason parent-child relationships exist is because the state confers legal parenthood on people through its paternity and maternity laws. It’s the state that is empowering parents to do anything with children to take them home, to have custody, and to make any kind of decisions about that.” (Law professor James Dwyer, College of William & Mary)

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