Should home school­ing be en­cour­aged in B.C?

24 Hours Vancouver - - FRONT PAGE - Brent Stafford is a vet­eran tele­vi­sion pro­ducer and mar­ket­ing spe­cial­ist. His company works in the brand, en­ter­tain­ment and re­source space.

Crit­ics of home school­ing ar­gue the qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion re­ceived is be­low the stan­dard of that de­liv­ered by the public school sys­tem. Allow me to ac­qui­esce one point. Not all home-schooled stu­dents are stel­lar in­tel­lects.

Os­car-win­ning ac­tress Jen­nifer Lawrence was home schooled and clearly there is a mas­sive deficit in her un­der­stand­ing of, well, re­al­ity. Re­cently, she sug­gested the dev­as­tat­ing hur­ri­canes in the United States are signs of “Mother Na­ture’s rage and wrath” at Amer­ica for elect­ing Don­ald Trump. Huh?

Katy Perry is an­other in­glo­ri­ous ex­am­ple. She re­ceived spo­radic home school­ing when she was young. I re­mind you, fol­low­ing the hor­rific Manch­ester ter­ror at­tack this sum­mer, Perry slovenly called for every­one to “unite, and love on each other… no bar­ri­ers, no bor­ders, we all need to just co­ex­ist.”

These ex­am­ples don’t prove home school­ing turns out snowflakes. It demon­strates how the poi­sonous ide­ol­ogy of so­cial jus­tice does. And, so­cial jus­tice is the sine qua non of the public school sys­tem.

Home school­ing is on the rise in B.C. and, while I dis­agree with Garth’s as­sess­ment that provincial bud­get cuts are some­how re­spon­si­ble, I do agree with Garth that public schools have turned into places where “stu­dents can or­ga­nize them­selves into stu­dent move­ments and de­mand bet­ter.” That’s so­cial jus­tice in ac­tion.

The en­tire sys­tem needs to be burnt to the ground, in­clud­ing col­lege and univer­sity, then re­built based on a clas­si­cal ap­proach, mean­ing there is such a thing as truth. What an­i­mates our cur­rent cur­ricu­lum is the idea that “re­al­ity” is so­cially con­structed and knowl­edge is ne­go­tiable.

A quick scan of Bri­tish Columbia’s new K-12 cur­ricu­lum de­liv­ers all the jus­ti­fi­ca­tion par­ents need to yank their kids out of public school and whip out the home black­board.

The re­vamp hinges on Big Ideas, which are to be in­te­grated across dis­ci­plines.

Fol­low­ing So­cial Stud­ies, and be­gin­ning in kinder­garten, stu­dents are pro­grammed that di­ver­sity is good and that all in­di­vid­u­als are the same. By Grade 3, the en­tire Big Idea set is based on learn­ing about In­dige­nous peo­ples as a ve­hi­cle to in­ter­nal­ize the value of mul­ti­cul­tur­al­ism.

By Grade 4, stu­dents are ex­pected to eval­u­ate and make “eth­i­cal judg­ments” on the fair­ness of BC’s abo­rig­i­nal treaty process. How is a nineyear-old ex­pected to ar­tic­u­late an eth­i­cal judg­ment on this is­sue when most adult Bri­tish Columbians can’t?

The an­swer is to start the pro­gram­ming when they are young. Which is why home school­ing in B.C. makes a lot of sense.


Brent Stafford

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