Public Schools ‘The Foundation of Our Society’?

I love it when people state their positions so clearly and cleanly. It makes it so much easier to see what's really going on.

By Tom Gilson Published on February 12, 2017

Education Secretary Ann DeVos was blocked by protesters from entering a D.C. public school Friday. The AP and CBS News both included this quote in their reports on the incident:

Ari Schwartz, 26, a non-profit worker, held a poster in which a picture of a teddy bear was juxtaposed with a photo of Devos. “This is a bear. This is a threat to students,” the caption read.… 

Public schools are “the foundation of our society, that’s how everybody learns what’s right and wrong,” Schwartz said. “We need to keep it that way.”

I love it when people state their positions so clearly and cleanly. It makes it so much easier to see what’s really going on.

What really is the foundation of our society? Where do we learn right and wrong?

The Foundation

What really is the foundation of our society? Where do we learn right and wrong?

Every psychologist knows that a child’s basic sense of right and wrong is well on its way toward being established before a child reaches school age. Moral maturity continues to develop for years, but that, too, happens primarily at home. 

Indeed, there can hardly be any doubt that the family is the foundation of society. It’s where children first learn to relate with others, love others, respect authority, cooperate with peers, and develop responsibility. If the child doesn’t learn these kinds of things at home, he or she will have an uphill climb learning it anywhere.

Indeed, there can hardly be any doubt that the family is the foundation of society.

Undeniably schools have a place in this child-building process along with the home and family. Or at least public schools do, if we take Ari Schwartz’s highly specific words at face value. Presumably, then, charter schools, which DeVos is known for advocating, have no place in children’s moral or social education. As for home-schooled children, apparently they’re doomed to grow up as complete moral know-nothings.

Which is ridiculous. Almost as ridiculous as it feels now to have to point out the obvious: yes, children do learn right and wrong in places other than public schools. Except for this: they might not learn the government-approved meaning of right and wrong.

Only the Government-Approved Meaning of Right and Wrong

They might not learn to be properly “tolerant” of every belief and lifestyle — all except for those that are frequently taught in private schools and home-school situations.

They might not learn that men should be allowed to marry men, women should be allowed to marry women, you’re not born a boy or a girl, you’re only “assigned” those categories at birth, the history of the U.S. is an unbroken stream of European atrocities upon the land, and religion has nothing to do with it except as it contributed to European aggression.

That’s the “foundation” public schools can uniquely provide to our society. It’s why school choice isn’t just a matter of whether Johnny can read or write — it’s whether Johnny learns right and wrong in the manner approved by the liberal/progressive establishment.

If Ari Schwartz meant anything other than that, I’d be interested to hear what it is. Meanwhile the rest of us can remain confident that the family is still the true foundation of society, and private school, charter school, and home-schooled students can learn right and wrong, too. 

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  • Ken Abbott

    Maintaining their near-monopoly on the “education” of American children is critical to the leftist/progressive mission. They will fight like wild beasts to keep it.

    • m-nj

      and sadly, their work is clearly making it into the church.. witness the change in attitude of the younger generation of Christians who are more likely to support LGBTQ(fill in the blank)

  • Chris in NC

    It never ceases to amaze me how the people shouting ‘tolerance’ the most seem to have the least of it.

  • Autrey Windle

    If the enemy can steal the children he can steal the future. From conception to graduation from university, we better start protecting our children. WAKE UP, AMERICA!

  • Paul Burgett

    Well said Tom. Before I read past the headline I knew where this was going. The family unit is under direct attack from multiple positions. There are so many who are blind to reality. I wonder how much time we have left.

  • BTP

    Killing the public provision of education should be the main goal of Catholic social policy, at this point. The government is ultimately the enemy of the Church, and their schools cannot be trusted.

  • ragline

    Government-controlled schooling is the foundation of tyranny.

  • Taylor Hall

    Nice article. Just a small typo though. DeVos’ first name is Betsy, not Ann.

  • Kevin Quillen

    public schools were primarily set up to teach children to read so that they could read the Bible and become good citizens. Why do you think that the founding fathers would put the ultimate power of jury nullification into the hands of the people? Only people properly taught(moral foundation) could be entrusted with this power. Also, why do you think that government wants to hide jury nullification from the public?

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