The right-wing’s current war against public education is both disturbing and infuriating.
From Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker‘s attempts to that state’s public school system to remarks by perennial GOP Presidential candidate — and loser — Ron Paul‘s absurd claims that the government wants “absolute control” over public schools to “indoctrinate” children, the goal is obvious: These people want to gut and dismantle our public school system.
“The public school system is now a propaganda machine,” Paul says. “They start with our kids even in kindergarten, teaching them about family values, sexual education, gun rights, environmentalism — and they condition them to believe in so much which is totally un-American.”
Bachmannn bragged about home schooling her five biological children — a frightening prospect given her constant mangling of historical and geological facts. Political consultant Garry South probably says it best about Bachmann:
Maybe while Bachmann is hiring staff she should also bring on a geography coach so she knows what state she’s actually in and what happened there. Having already misplaced the battles of Lexington and Concord in New Hampshire, will she also think Mt. Rushmore is in South Carolina, or confuse Iowa for Ohio?
Home schooling is popular in Floyd County and I’ve talked to a number of home-schooled kids who have received a good education. But the Floyd County school system is often recognized as one of the best in the state and that’s because of the hard work of its teachers.
I’m a product of the Floyd County School system and had the good fortune to get a quality education from a number of excellent teachers. Ruth Hallman, my English and journalism teacher, is retired now and lives near Richmond. History teacher Roberta Hewitt is deceased as is chemistry teacher Max Thomas, who encouraged me to become a writer. These people taught me to learn and I’m forever grateful to them.
When I talk to high school kids today, not only in Floyd County but at other schools where I speak to media classes, I find students who are aware, interested and enthusiastic about learning. It was the teachers at those public schools that turned them on to learning.
Floyd County has a long and rich tradition of good teachers who had a profound impact of students. I know a number of teachers in the school system who are dedicated to their profession and express a genuine interest in their students.
While some urban school systems have problems, it is wrong to condemn the entire public school system as “propaganda machines” for the state. What Ron Paul, Michele Bachmann and others are pushing is nothing but propaganda itself.
Their comments along with the incredibly stupid actions by elected officials like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker are far more damaging than anything taught in our public schools.