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IPFS News Link • Education: Private Secular Schools and Home School

The Great Escape from Government Schools?

•, by Jim Bovard

Government bureaucrats are panicking since subsidies are tied to the number of students' butts in chairs each day. Duke University Professor Katie Rosanbalm lamented that, thanks to the pandemic, "Our relationship with school became optional."

School absences have "exploded" almost everywhere, according to a New York Times report last week. Chronic absenteeism has almost doubled amongst public school students, rising from 15% pre-pandemic to 26% currently. Compulsory attendance laws are getting trampled far and wide.

The New York Times suggested that "something fundamental has shifted in American childhood and the culture of school, in ways that may be long lasting." Connecticut Education Commissioner Charlene M. Russell-Tucker commented, "There is a sense of: 'If I don't show up, would people even miss the fact that I'm not there?'" The arbitrary, counterproductive school shutdowns destroyed the trust that many families had in the government education system.

The New York Times reflected the tizzy afflicting education bureaucrats across the land: "Students can't learn if they aren't in school."

Like hell.

So kids are not enduring daily indoctrination to doubt their own genders? So kids' heads are not being dunked into the latest social justice buckets of fear, loathing, and guilt? So kids are not being drilled with faulty methods of learning mathematics to satisfy the latest Common Core catechism and vainly try to close the "achievement gap"? A shortage of indoctrination is not the same as a shortfall of education.

More than seventy years ago, University of Chicago President Robert Hutchins aptly observed, "The tremendous waste of time in the American education system must result from the fact that there is so much time to waste." John Taylor Gatto, New York's Teacher of the Year of 1991 (according to the New York State Education Department), observed, "Government schooling…kills the family by monopolizing the best times of childhood and by teaching disrespect for home and parents."