[FoRK] reas. conv. 12/4: Beyond Faith

Kevin Elliott < K-Elliott at wiu.edu > on > Mon Dec 11 14:38:30 PST 2006

Just one comment on this- it's all well and good to talk about your 
concerns about what may or may not happen in the future if parents 
are allowed to use vouchers, etc.

The sick reality is that our schools suck, really, really bad.  The 
poorest people are getting COMPLETELY screwed.  Please don't get 
sucked into thinking that this potential risk justifies throwing 
away the one idea that may get our schools out of the craphole 
they're in.

P.S.- I should also mention that school choice (basically vouchers) 
is pretty common in Europe.  School choice isn't some crazy 
right-wing nutjob idea.

At 9:11 PM +0000  on  12/11/06, Russell Turpin wrote:
>In regards to Jeff Bone's story of his religious upbringing and departure
>from it, I can't help but think that the public school is the one place
>where many children get the opportunity to meet a variety of peers who do
>not share their home's religious beliefs, and likewise having some
>significant encounter with adults who do not worship as their parents do.
>If we create a system of school vouchers, that allows their use to create
>sectarian schools, how many millions of children will then go through
>their entire youth taught only by adults who worship in the same church,
>playing only with friends who are taught the same creed, and having only
>tangential encounter with anyone, peer or adult, who does not. And mind,
>when I say "the same," I don't mean just vaguely Christian, but rather
>the narrow creeds of specific sects, from Pat Robertson's specific
>variety of wild-eyed fundamentalism to strictly orthodox Catholicism. I
>realize that happens with many children now. But they are part of an
>exclusionary minority, and importantly, they recognize that. Even the
>most parochial, home-schooled child knows that the cultural standard from
>which they depart is a public school of much greater diversity. And that
>culture bleeds over. If the religious right gets its way, American culture
>will not be mostly a great mixing in the public schools, with a relatively
>few families who choose and manage to hold their children apart, but a
>majority of narrow sects.
>
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