Public, state-provided education is relatively recent, not even 200 years old. Prior to state education, parents were the primary educators of their children. In addition to teaching children the basics, they could also pass on deeply-held values and beliefs.
But with most children in the West today spending a large part of their early years in state schools, the values and ideologies of the state, not the parents, become dominant. And those with values which are hostile to that of most parents are quite happy to exploit this to the maximum.
Indeed, this has been a deliberate policy. Consider a few examples. The father of modern education, John Dewey (1859-1952) made it clear that he wanted state control of education in order to rid it of any traces of Christian values and beliefs. He was a signatory to the Humanist Manifesto (1933), and pushed what he termed a ‘new religion’: secular humanism.
He even penned an article in 1922 entitled “Education as Religion” in which he states, “We make a religion of our education. . . . Faith in education signifies nothing less than belief in the possibility of deliberate direction of the formation of human disposition and intelligence.”
He also said, “Schools do have a role – and an important one – in production of social change.” And he reinforced this by saying, “I believe that education is the fundamental method of social progress and reform.”
He knew that public education could be used as an instrument of social change. And the change he wanted was away from Christianity and toward secular humanism.
Another signatory of the first Humanist Manifesto, Charles F. Potter (1885-1962), was not shy about his intentions when he wrote this: “Education is thus a most powerful ally of humanism, and every public school is a school of humanism. What can the theistic Sunday school, meeting for an hour once a week, and teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of humanistic teachings?”
More recently pragmatist and postmodernist Richard Rorty (1931-2007) said, “I, like most Americans who teach humanities or social science in colleges and universities, try to arrange things so that students who enter as bigoted, homophobic, religious fundamentalists will leave college with views more like our own.”
All this demonstrates that for many of our elites, public education is far from just teaching the three R’s, but is a means of thought control, pushing worldviews which are often hostile to that of parents. It is a form of social engineering and propaganda.
We have a great example of this in today’s newspapers. It seems a new Federal Government draft document, “Early Years Learning Framework” is seeking to target primary school kids as agents of social change and political correctness.
Here is how one press account describes it: “Victorian babies, toddlers and preschoolers are set to become political activists under new Federal Government guidelines. The April 2009 draft Early Years Learning Framework wants teachers to make under-fives:
-Contribute to reconciliation, including flying the Aboriginal flag and inviting elders to give talks.
-Use ‘social inclusion puppets’ and ‘persona dolls’ to explore exclusion and ethical issues.
-Challenge and resist bias and discrimination.
-Take action in unfair situations and learn to act when injustice occurs.
-Assess and act on power dynamics as they get older.”
And all this is for those under five! If it seems like radical activism and just so much PC nonsense, that is because it is. And as already mentioned, secularists and social activists know that the earlier they can get to our children, the better they can push their radical agendas on to them.
And the warning lights should be sounding. Whenever you hear talk of “diversity,” “discrimination,” “social inclusion” and the like, you know you are likely to have a group of coercive utopians planning their next assault on childhood and parental values and beliefs.
Such terms usually occur in the context of promoting all worldviews, ideologies and beliefs – except for Christianity that is. And they also commonly occur in discussions of sexuality, where the aim is to soften people up to accepting and embracing all forms of sexuality, all the while denigrating traditional marriage and family.
All of which is why so many parents are voting with their feet and getting out of the public education system. They are opting for independent or religious schools, or even for home-schooling. At least that way they know they will have a bit more control over what their children are receiving in their education.
They will be a bit more assured that political correctness and anti-Christian and anti-family bigotry will be less on offer. No wonder countries such as Germany have outlawed homeschooling altogether, and sent parents to prison for daring to defy the State on this.
Only two institutions stand between an ever more powerful state and the individual – the family and the church. That is why both are under such ferocious attack nowadays, and that is why education especially has been used to bash both institutions. This latest move of PC silliness and indoctrination is simply the latest in a long line of efforts by the State to gain further control over our young people. Expect more to come.