What’s in a Name? Public School or Government School

What’s in a Name? Public School or Government School.

Homeschool, Unschool, Deschool, Private School, Whole Life Learning, Interest Led Learning, Worldschool, Roadschool  . . .

I recently had a discussion with a co-worker regarding public school; however, I referred to it as Government School. He pointed out to me that he had never attended a Government School but he had gone to public schools.

Now don’t get me wrong, this blog is not about being unappreciative of public school teachers. It is merely a discussion which seeks to clearly define what public schools are and what parents are sending their children to when they enroll them in a “public” or Government School.

Let’s start at the top. In the United States we have a federal Department of Education. Below the federal level, there is a State Department of Education – here is the link for California’s. Where I live, there is also a County Department of Education. Below that is a School District which oversees schools in several neighboring cities. Finally, each school has its own internal administration and staff with a principal at the top. So there are five levels of government bureaucracy in place to “educate” my children – Federal, State, County, School District, Local School.

And, the federal government admits to an ever-increasing role in the education of our children.

“Despite the growth of the Federal role in education, the Department never strayed far from what would become its official mission”

Not only does it keep growing in size, but in scope as well! They admit they’ve strayed from the mission (albeit “never far”).

So, before getting into the pros and cons of whether the governemt at any level (let alone every level!) should be involved in educating our children, suffice it to say, that when you or I send our children to “public” schools, we are, in fact, turning them over to the government to be educated by the government.

You may not have thought about it that way before. You may have simply thought of public schools as being open and available to everyone, especially those who cannot afford private school. That is true enough and you can think of it that way; but, you should also think of it as government school because that is also what it is.

The problem of deciding who should be teaching our children is almost the same as what they should be taught. No school or school teacher, whether public or private, offers values-free education. Each school and each teacher will impart what he or she individually believes to be true or what the policy of the school is. The problem isn’t who is teaching our kids how to think – that is, how to think critically and ask why? It is that they are being taught what to think instead of how to think – what the answer is, instead of how to decide what the answer should be.

These levels of government seek to teach our kids not how to think, but what to think, what to wear, what to eat, views on guns, sexual orientation,  gender roles, definitions of marriage, reverse discrimination, religion, evolution vs creation, etc., etc., etc.

Consider all of the movements to distribute condoms to students, bring socialized medicine and health care into the schools and provide abortion counseling, as well as individual teachers who mock religious beliefs and who also promote social agendas while teaching subjects such as history and social studies.

Also, keep in mind that various positions in these government levels are filled by political appointment and not by an objective selection process in order to find the most suitable person to educate.  The U.S. Department of Education publishes a list of all of its political appointees.

Once again, keep in mind this isn’t anti-public school teacher. They have a tough job, especially with increasing class sizes, budget cuts and the burden of working in a burauecratic nightmare. This is especially true of those teachers who want nothing more than to teach children the basics but are faced with the dilemma of following orders from their employer which they may conscientiously object to.

What should you do?

Perhaps you are in a position where you are not able to instantly remove your child and begin homeschooling, or perhaps you cannot afford a private school. Homeschooling takes some mental preparation as well as planning.

So, the first thing you should do is to pay attention to what is happening in our schools today. Read the papers and read the articles concerning lawsuits against teachers for religious rights violations, medical care/counseling without parental consent, etc. Go to the website of every government agency involved in your child’s education. Look at their budget (if they dare to list it). The U.S. Dept. of Ed budget is over 68 BILLION dollars! Look where the money is going. Look at their mission statement as well as all of the laws they cite to justify their existence. Sit in on a school board meeting if you can (videos are now made available of some public meetings and put up on websites for those who cannot attend).  More than anything, remember the education of your children is your right and responsibility, take a vested interest in their learning – don’t just depend on the government to do it for you.  Even within the Public School System, you can be involved and have an impact on what and how your children are taught.   Be involved and aware!

A construction project to repair and update th...

A construction project to repair and update the building façade at the Department of Education headquarters in 2002 resulted in the installation of structures at all of the entrances to protect employees and visitors from falling debris. ED redesigned these protective structures to promote the "No Child Left Behind Act". The structures were temporary and were removed in 2008. Source: U.S. Department of Education, (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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One Response to What’s in a Name? Public School or Government School

  1. Wayne says:

    I think the scariest thing for me is not about teaching children. Rather, I am taxed into submission so things I do not believe can be programmed into children.


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