CS Lewis (Was: Favourite books)

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at Proffitt.com
Tue Dec 14 20:47:45 EST 2004

On Tue, 14 Dec 2004 19:32:06 -0600, Margaret Ball wrote:

>Melissa wrote
>>The gist of it was that there had been some planning at the state or
>>district level before school began, and when the reality failed to match the
>>plan, they changed reality.
>Now *there* is a dwj plot in the making!

Complete with a cast of five dozen Mr. Chesneys, I'm afraid.

>>I think the *idea* of tracking--meaning educating kids at the level they're
>>capable of--is a good one, but it never seems to work out. 
>What really worries me is the kind of sneaky, 
>we-don't-admit-we're-doing-it tracking that is happening in the public 
>schools around here. There's a lot of blather about how the ONLY thing 
>that really MATTERS in education is the parents' involvement, and maybe 
>this sounds pretty good until you get a child in the school system and 
>find out the translation.
>The translation is: "We're not even going to try to teach anything. 
>We're just going to hand out assignments that the kid can't possibly do 
>without a parent guiding them every step of the way. Those kids who are 
>unlucky enough not to have a full-time dedicated parent/tutor/chauffeur 
>behind them will know they are failures by the end of second grade, and 
>they'll believe it's all their fault and that they deserve to have 
>shitty lives and shitty jobs."

I hadn't thought about this interpretation of that philosophy.  Because in
another sense, it's true that if you don't have parents involved, education
is a lot less likely to happen.  But that sounds like a truly asinine
extreme to go to.  Are you in Austin?  My aunt lives there and I know she
was homeschooling for a while due to how much she hated the school system.

My parents have said something similar (they live in eastern Washington)
about how the kids need a LOT of guidance on their homework.  My feeling is,
if the parent has to teach them at home, what is the point of sending them
to school at all?  Stupid.

In our district, they seem to be going the other way: they know that most of
the parents *aren't* involved, for whatever reason, so they structure
everything on the assumption that if the school doesn't do it, it won't get
done.  This is annoying to me, the involved parent, when they over-explain
things, but I try not to let it get to me.  Having seen that, yes, they
really do need to treat some parents like idiots, I can understand their

Melissa Proffitt

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