rastafari

Home-schooling –A National Good?

Ronald Jones, Minister of Education

Ronald Jones, Minister of Education

We have skimmed the surface of the home schooling debate in this forum. The following Barbados Advocate editorial adds to the discussion – Barbados Underground

The issue of home schooling for the island’s children is not one that has raised its head on a frequent basis in the past 50 years of our independent status. This is somewhat surprising, given the prominence that has been accorded to the incidences of bullying, illicit drug experimentation, precocious sexual conduct and illiteracy among those who attend the public institutions of learning. However, with the recent prosecution and conviction of a couple [who chose, for religious reasons, to home-school their two children] for failure to ensure that their children received full-time education suitable to their age and ability by regular attendance at a public or private school or in any other manner satisfactory to the Minister, the matter has sprung to the forefront of local public discourse.

For us, the issue is but another instance of the conflict between private autonomy and state regulation. The subject matter of a recent editorial- the prohibition of junk food is another. The question is, should the state be free to regulate the choices of citizens in these contexts or should it have to demonstrate an overarching reason for doing so?

It is generally accepted that there are a number of areas where the state chooses not to intervene into the private life of the citizen, whether for the reason that the state has ceded authority in that space by the guarantee of a fundamental freedom or that it has simply adopted a policy of non-interference. Should the education of one’s children fall into the latter category?

For example, even though it might present a cogent case for ensuring the health of its citizens in light of the existence of taxpayer-funded state-provided health care that exhausts a large proportion of our limited financial resources, the state has chosen rather to opt out of decreeing a national diet and even of prohibiting the consumption of certain substances recognized as injurious to continued good health.

In addition, the constitutional guarantee of freedom of conscience precludes the state from enforcing a prescribed form of religious observance of the individual citizen.

So far as education is concerned, however, the national policy appears to be one of regulation in the national interest. Hence, the Education Act, Cap. 41, in its long title, declares as one of its intendments, “to provide for a coordinated and effective system of education related to the needs of the people of Barbados…” and section 3(e) of that Act includes among the functions of the Minister that of contributing “toward the spiritual, moral, mental, physical, social, cultural and economic development of the community by ensuring that efficient education is available to meet the needs of Barbados…” This provision suggests that the national education system is to be directed toward the total development of the individual so as to enable him or her to become a better citizen, a necessary component of a better community and nation.

Should a citizen be free to opt out of this paradigm? The arguments appear to be equally balanced on both sides and it is noteworthy that the local statute at section 42 (1)(b) contemplates the lawfulness of home schooling so long as it is “in a manner and to a standard satisfactory to the Minister”.

There are those who endorse the thesis embraced by an Indian professor of human resource development that home schooling offers child-centred learning and preserves the uniqueness of the child that is often lost in an overcrowded classroom”. Others cling to the view that the classroom is more than an incubator for learning formulae and concepts and also teaches the social skills equally necessary for good citizenship.

Let the debate continue.

Tags: ,

15 Comments on “Home-schooling –A National Good?”

  1. Well Well & Consequences October 28, 2016 at 6:22 AM #

    Well we know the idiots in parliament are too slave minded to see, know or recognize that homeschooling when chosen by parents to do so, puts the responsibility of educating, socializing and funding the education of their children, solely on the parents, easing up the government, the treadpsury and all the others services funded by taxpayers, including the bus service.

    Over 50 years of education handed down to them by the british and none of them learned anything.

    Brainwash education has made them the fool.

    The ministry of education and child care board are both filled with some of the most stupid and programmed slaves, so don’t expect any better.

    Like

  2. Well Well & Consequences October 28, 2016 at 6:33 AM #

    “Others cling to the view that the classroom is more than an incubator for learning formulae and concepts and also teaches the social skills equally necessary for good citizenship.”

    The classroom is an incubar for corruption, it corrupts the minds of 90% of the weakest children, each child leaves home with a different baggage and leaves it in the classroom, it takes an extremely strong parent to fight off these negative forces that engage their children.

    Check what ya getting coming out of the schools…all the schools, it’s all over social media…and tell me if that is how you want your children socialized…and I have not even gotten to the sexual predators in the schools posing as male and female teachers who prey on the weaknesses and lack of sexual knowledge of children, recruiting the most vulnerable for their own sexual enjoyment.

    Check the damn parliament and see what has come out of the schools in the last 50 years, check the society and see what has come out of the schools…there was no positive socialization, just a load of crap.

    Like

  3. David October 28, 2016 at 8:40 AM #

    The editorial is interesting, how does the state prioritize what is best for its citizens. The example mentioned by the author is apt, why not legislate what children eat given the strain on the national budget to use an extreme example?

    Like

  4. Bernard Codrington. October 28, 2016 at 9:34 AM #

    What strain does the menu of a child put on the national budget, David? Children eat what is available and what their parents provide. Is there any scientific evidence as to what constitute an ideal diet for child or adult? Do you not read the health journals and see that butter is harmful,then ten years later vegetable oils are harmful? Chocolate is bad then it’s good. And we can go on and on and on. The truth is we are all ignorant. Children generally eat what their bodies ask for , including cholesterol which is the building block of brain and nerve tissue. A more sensible approach would be to investigate the hormonal and antibiotic additives to animal feeds.

    Like

  5. David October 28, 2016 at 9:58 AM #

    @Bernard

    Too Far East is West the old people like to say. Where do you suggest good nutrition habits should be inculcated?

    Like

  6. Georgie Porgie October 28, 2016 at 10:20 AM #

    MR CODRINGTON SIR
    YOU ARE RIGHT AGAIN RE A more sensible approach would be to investigate the hormonal and antibiotic additives to animal feeds.

    AFTER ALL WHAT EVER YOU EAT OR DRINK INCLUDING ALCOHOL BECOMES ACETYLCoA

    WHEN WE WERE LIKKLE BOYS WE ATE WHAT WAS THERE
    IT OFTEN HAD LOTS OF SUGAR, BUT WE USED THE ACETYLCoA USED IMMEDIATELY AS WE RAN AND SKIPPED AND JUMPED VIGOROUSLY WITH GAY ABANDON

    THERE WERE NO SO CALLED NCD’S THEN (AN OXYMORON SINCE ALL DISEASES THAT ARE NOT COMMUNICABLE ARE NON COMUNICABLE)

    RE Where do you suggest good nutrition habits should be inculcated?

    BY READING THE SHYTE SPOKEN BY THE NUTRITION ILLITERATES ON BU WHO TALK THROUGH THIER SHELVES OF HOUSTON

    Like

  7. Georgie Porgie October 28, 2016 at 10:24 AM #

    RE why not legislate what children eat
    HAVE YOU EVER HEARD SO MUCH SHITE IN YOUR LIFE?

    THIS IS REALLY LEADING FROM THE FRONT IN THE ABILITY TO TALK SHITE

    LAW I HIGH SCHOOL CHILDREN MAY NOT HAVE ANY BREAD AND TWOS
    LAW II HIGH SCHOOL CHILDREN MAY NOT HAVE CASSAVA PONE OR A JUC AND A CHEESE CUTTER

    Like

  8. Georgie Porgie October 28, 2016 at 10:29 AM #

    Well Well & Consequences October 28, 2016 at 6:33 AM #
    “Others cling to the view that the classroom is more than an incubator for learning formulae and concepts and also teaches the social skills equally necessary for good citizenship.”

    The classroom is an incubar for corruption, it corrupts the minds of 90% of the weakest children, each child leaves home with a different baggage and leaves it in the classroom, it takes an extremely strong parent to fight off these negative forces that engage their children.

    Check what ya getting coming out of the schools…all the schools, it’s all over social media…and tell me if that is how you want your children socialized…and I have not even gotten to the sexual predators in the schools posing as male and female teachers who prey on the weaknesses and lack of sexual knowledge of children, recruiting the most vulnerable for their own sexual enjoyment.

    Check the damn parliament and see what has come out of the schools in the last 50 years, check the society and see what has come out of the schools…there was no positive socialization, just a load of crap

    SERIOUSLY WELL WELL
    ARE YOU SAYING THAT WHAT YOU HAVE WRITTEN ABOVE APPLIES ONLY TO BARBADOS?

    YOU OF COURSE KNOW THAT THE MALADIES AND PERVERSITIES OF WHICH YOU SPEAK I MUCH MORE PERVERSE IN THE GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD EVER! tell ma dat ah lie

    these idiots up here spend more per school child and are rated 28th in the world

    Like

  9. Well Well & Consequences October 28, 2016 at 12:42 PM #

    GP…you are right back to the point I am making…why do you think parents in the US are opting to educate their children from K1 through K12 at home and up to college, the education system in its present form is a failure, I opted for private schools for my kids, smaller class sizes, individual attention, more funding for labs etc.

    http://ow.ly/yroL305CJMp

    The British education system has failed, so has the US, I am only familiar with the Canadian university system because one of my kids attended a top university there…and it worked out….but currently all roads and options are leading to homeschooling for a million very good reasons.

    http://ow.ly/s745305CJtp

    These 2 links gives some insight.

    Like

  10. Well Well & Consequences October 28, 2016 at 12:48 PM #

    http://ow.ly/cKA4305CJCB

    So does this one.

    It’s not like the US or UK or Canada were littered with schools in the era of settlements in the 17th and 18th centuries, people were homeschooled and that is what will return.,,, like it or not.

    http://ow.ly/wz5N305CSeq

    Like

  11. Heather October 28, 2016 at 2:22 PM #

    The State refuses to accept that there is a pressing need to reform the entire primary and secondary school system.

    Like

  12. Well Well & Consequences October 28, 2016 at 5:08 PM #

    There is a 50 year old pattern in Parliament not to upgrade anything, you do not have proactive fprward thinking ministers, once something is given to them, they just run with it and do not seek to make the necessary changes to benefit their people….their thought processes are stale, outdated and stagnant and they expect the population to stay like them and accepting of their stupidity.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/hillary-clinton-emails-fbi-investigation-presidential-election-donald-trump-could-win-a7385846.html

    On an aside, what an upcoming disaster…lol MoneyB

    Like

  13. Well Well & Consequences October 28, 2016 at 7:20 PM #

    http://ow.ly/2W85305E93I

    Let’s see if this turns out to be true, it would be the height of hypocrisy.

    Like

  14. Well Well & Consequences October 29, 2016 at 4:58 AM #

    http://www.barbadostoday.bb/2016/10/29/education-system-too-elitist/

    This is a good way of saying, the 50 plus year old education system is nothing but pure crap, because the same 30% who benefit from that streamlined system, 80% have to leave the islands to access opportunities in the metropolises, that are not available in the Caribbean creating a brain drain and leaving behind a 70% population of unemployables and low wage earners….with struggling entrepreneurs who have no real opportunities.

    But the leaders do not have the intellect to see that far, they too are products of a blinkered education system….it all leads right back to a failed education syetem and failures of the leaders to upgrade a system handed down to them over 50 years ago.

    Like

  15. MR.C November 5, 2016 at 3:57 PM #

    It seems very clear that the people of Barbados are more eager towards changes regarding,material changes. Such as being eager to have the latest in just about any and everything even if it leaves them without what they really NEED. But improving on the most IMPORTANT THINGS seems to be taken lightly; How many times in the last 5o years has the school curriculum has been upgraded? How much have been done in regards to THE GOVERNMENT’S BEHAVIOUR? CHANGE comes through sacrifices being made for the good of ALL THE PEOPLE; So if you’re NOT being responsible for demanding what’s yourS from THE GOVERNMENT,then things will remain as is. We can go back and forth with this forever. But until people’s demands be heard and dealt with, you will remain AS IS And AS IS gets you nowhere fast; Barbados policies in many areas NEEDS CHANGES. But the will NEVER happen if all that’s done is jaw jabbing, and name calling. But NEVER stepping up to the plate to allow The Government to know YOU’VE HAD ENOUGH:;

    Like

Join in the discussion, you never know how expressing your view may make a difference.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: