…and the trouble that it’s put me through.” — Waylon Jennings
I’ve had it up to here (here!) with the mandatory character education malarkey in our public schools. Why does my district (or anyone, for that matter) think it is within their rights to tell my kid (or anyone, for that matter) how to react to a given situation?
Everyone reacts differently to different stimuli. Who is to say one reaction is more appropriate than another? My kid gets upset with criticism and stomps off? Yeah, so do I, if you catch me on a bad day. You don’t know what to expect when criticizing my daughter’s schoolwork? Well, can you say that you always act ‘rationally’ and ‘reasonably’ to someone’s criticism of yours? I dare say not — in fact, my experiences with some teachers have soundly negated the idea that they respond well to criticism, no matter how tactfully worded. My child is outspoken in her disagreement with your views? She doesn’t allow her fellow students to say snarky things to her without responding in kind? I applaud that, I don’t condemn it.
So. I am mounting a campaign, as much for myself as others. My daughter has good grades on her report card. That is what school is for. I’ll handle the character education at home, as I see fit. The school district should not require teachers to impose its subjective standards upon my student, so long as my student is not out of control. Meanwhile, so long as the district continues to impose its idea of character upon my children, I will continue to take its opinion of her character with a grain (or two) of salt. Personally, I think mandatory character education in which children are taught how to think and react to stimuli smacks noisily of A Brave New World. As for preparing her for junior high and high school, I like to focus more on college, where the best professors were the ones who accepted and welcomed challenges to their own thinking.
And therefore (much redacted, sorry, you get the gist)….
Harsh? You betcha. But I’ve always been crazy, just like I said.
P.S.: Report card posted with permission of the student. 😉