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Public School Issues

Concerns About Public Schools Back to Top
American Education History Tour
John Taylor Gatto, author of "The Underground History of American Education," has composed this graphic representation of the real history of the education establishment in America.
Government Schooling Comes to America: The Origins of Government Schooling in the United States
Matthew Brouillette
The first step in understanding the state of education today is to review how government came to be the dominant force behind schooling in the United States. From the outset of the first settlements in the New World, Americans founded and successfully maintained a decentralized network of schools through the 1850s. Then, beginning in New England, a wave of change swept across the country, which soon saw states quickly abandoning the original American model of decentralized, private education in favor of government-funded and operated schools.
Parents, Are You Ready To Teach Your Kids Arithmetic?
Phyllis Schlafly
Parents are starting to realize that "fuzzy" math courses (variously called "whole math," "new math" or "new new math") are producing kids who can't do arithmetic, much less algebra. The U.S. Department of Education responded last October by officially endorsing ten new math courses for grades K-12, calling them "exemplary" or "promising" and urging local school districts to "seriously consider" adopting one of them. The recommended programs were approved by an "expert" panel commissioned by the Department of Education. But many parents believe that the "experts" are subtracting rather than adding to the skills of schoolchildren.
Pulling Kids Out of Government Schools
Elizabeth Farah
Parents should take their kids out of government school because government education is not possible. "Government education" is an oxymoron. The object of teaching is the transmission of truth, which is reality. A synonym for the word “teach” is “indoctrinate.” Another good term is to “propagate” or “propagandize,” which is the teaching of any system of principles. You can see the problem with any government indoctrinating or propagandizing children. It is inherently immoral and un-American to charge the government with this responsibility.
Saving the Children
Ned Vare
It is sometimes said, by public school supporters, that if some children are taken out of the system to go to other schools, the public schools will deteriorate. And so, the thinking goes, parents have a "duty to society" to keep their kids in the public schools, even though they have already deteriorated almost beyond recognition. How absurd that the government schools think of the children as serving the schools' or society's needs instead of the other way around. It's not the school system that needs saving, or even reforming. It's the children who need to escape from the failing government schools and be allowed to home school or attend successful private schools, without the penalty of paying twice -- once with taxes and again for tuition.
State Education Fails The Test
William Trench
Children naturally love to learn. They want to know everything. "Daddy, why is the sky blue?" "Why can't I see my back?" "Why are those dogs doing that?" "Are we there yet?" And so on and so on. Then we send them to school. And all desire to learn is methodically destroyed. Many of today's citizens are products of the schools of the last twenty years, during which time the trend has been to adopt a more and more socialistic posture. Most teachers have never spent their lives anywhere except in classrooms, and their vision of the world is so much at odds with the real world of business and industry as to be virtually a different society.
Teacher of the Year Acceptance Speech
John Taylor Gatto
This is the text of a speech by John Taylor Gatto accepting the New York City Teacher of the Year Award on January 31, 1990. From the speech: "Family is the main engine of education. If we use schooling to break children away from parents...we're going to continue to have the horror show we have right now. The curriculum of family is at the heart of any good life. We've gotten away from that curriculum--time to return to it...Time for a return to Democracy, Individuality, and Family."
The Inmates Are Running the Asylum
Tina Blue
A veteran teacher talks about her experience as a substitute teacher. Full of anecdotes, this article illustrates the state of classrooms today. She concludes that if she had school aged children, she would not place them in public schools, but would choose to homeschool them.
The Myth of Teacher Qualifications
Chris Klicka
Most education officials publicly claim that teachers need special “qualifications” in order to be effective. As a result, public education organizations often promote legislation or an interpretation of the law which would require home school parents to have one of three qualifications: 1) a teacher certificate, 2) a college degree, or 3) pass a “teacher’s exam.” Although this seems reasonable on the surface, such requirements not only violate the right of parents to teach their children as guaranteed by the First and Fourteenth Amendments, but virtually all academic research documents that there is no positive correlation between teacher qualifications (especially teacher certification requirements) and student performance.
The Seduction of Homeschooling Families
Chris Cardiff
Do the public school authorities feel threatened by homeschooling? Judging by their efforts to lure homeschooling families into dependence on local school districts, the answer is apparently yes. For the last several years, homeschooling has been the fastest growing educational alternative in the country. The sheer number of homeschoolers represent a distinct threat to the hegemony of the government school monopoly. Qualitatively, the academic success of homeschoolers, measured by standardized test scores and recruitment by colleges, debunk the myth that parents need to hire credentialed experts to force children to learn.


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Our Top Picks
A Different Kind of Teacher: Solving the Crisis of American Schooling
John Taylor Gatto
 
Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling
John Taylor Gatto
 
They're Your Kids: An Inspirational Journey from Self-Doubter to Home School Advocate
Sam Sorbo
 
Better Late Than Early: A New Approach to Your Child's Education
Raymond S. Moore; Dennis R. Moore; Dorothy N. Moore
 
The Exhausted School: Bending the Bars of Traditional Education
 
 
 
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