A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.
Pr 22:3

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My Personal Experience in the
Public School System

One of the reasons I decided to home school

Home Schooling is one way for fathers to effectively bring their children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.  By this we are not saying that those who do not home school are failing in their duties to Eph 6:4.  However, given the climate in our nation's schools today, I think that any concerned parent must admit the grave difficulties faced in a public education system which continues to increase in more and more ungodliness.  This doesn't mean that godly children can not be brought up in the current public school system (I am evidence that it can happen.)  But let's think about what our children are being taught besides the Three R's.  I'll give some examples from my own experience.

The first school I went to was a small conservative Christian school.  My parents sacrificed their meager income to give me a Christian education for which I am still grateful.  When we moved back to Texas towards the end of my first grade year, there wasn't a Christian school available and home schooling was not in vogue at the time so I was unrolled in the public school system.  My new public education began the moment I stepped on the bus.  I remember another fist grader who was kind enough to teach me all sorts of new four letter words even demonstrating an interesting new hand gesture which accompanied one of those famous words.  I was certainly broadening my knowledge that day! 

After a few days I decided I was ready to try out my new vocabulary on my younger brother.  I strongly suspected that my mother would not approve but figured I could plead ignorance at least once, so after we got home one day and mom was letting us in the door I timed my entry to bump into my brother.  When he shoved me back, I proceeded to call him by one of the new words I learned and even gave him the hand sign that went along with it.  Needless to say Mom was rather shocked and wanted to know were I learned it from and then ordered me never to say it again.  I feigned ignorance and got off with the whole thing.  Naturally, I was quite pleased with myself.

A few years later we moved again.  This time we were back in my father's hometown, it was the same, very small, school he and my uncles all graduated from and where I eventually graduated.  As my education continued there, I learned some interesting new things, particularly in the fifth grade. 

At the time, the school system allowed the best scholastic performers in the fifth grade to wash dishes in the school cafeteria and earn some extra money.  Being one of the high achievers I was privileged to join my peers in the cafeteria.  One day particularly stands out in my mind even now.  One of the fifth grade girls had a boy friend in the junior high.  One of the big food mixers had a smooth oblong aluminum handle on it at head height.  This 10 year old girl proceeded to demonstrate for us what she was considering doing to her boy friend.  Needless to say we all had quite an eye opener that day!

Years later in the ninth grade I remember sitting in Physical Science next to a fellow classmate who was known for showing up to school drunk or doped up.  He was also known as one of the local drug dealers.  I will never forget how kind he was in offering me Acid for the introductory price of only $35.  He told me how great it was to go on an Acid trip for 2-3 days.  I figured he was probably on one at the time.  Of course I refused.  Since he sat right next to me in class he persisted for a few days but eventually gave up.  That was the first and last time I was ever approached to do drugs but the point is I wasn't looking for it and didn't hang out with students who did drugs but I was approached.

These three instances are just my personal experience.  Everyone who attends the public school system will have one similar to it.  Long before I had any children I began to question the wisdom of sending my sons and daughters into the hornets nest.  Did I want my 6 year old children learning how to cuss like a sailor?  Did I want my little children being exposed to sex in elementary school?  Did I want my children exposed to alcohol and drugs addicts?

We can't hide our heads under the sand and pretend that our children will not be exposed to this stuff in the public education system.  That's why it's called public education.  From what I've read, the public school system forces these things upon our children at an even earlier age now.

We cant be cynical and say, "Well kids are going to be exposed to this stuff no matter what and the sooner they learn to deal with it the better."  I agree that our children are going to have to learn about this stuff.  But God's word says it is supposed to be from their parents who teach them right from wrong not a bunch of ungodly school children telling them if it feels good do it.

However, we who home school can not be naive and think that we can keep our children from being exposed to these things either.  Home schooling is not a panacea that will solve all these problems and completely save our children from the lewd society we live in.  Cursing, sex, drugs and alcohol are too pervasive.  Home schooling simply gives us more control over what and how much our children are exposed to.  This means that we must teach our children about cursing, sex, drugs and alcohol.  And we will still have to do so at an early age.  If we don't we are playing a dangerous game.  (It's important for parents whose children are in the public school to start even earlier.  For cursing start immediately before kindergarten.  For sex no later than the end of first or second grade.  Believe me if you don't someone else will.  For drugs and alcohol start before middle school maybe even in the 4th or 5th grade.  If you choose not to, don't worry the drug dealers and party goers will be happy to do it for you.)

As I said, if you home school, this doesn't mean we get let off the hook about talking with our kids.  We mustn't  think we can be super protective and prevent them from exposure until they are 16 or 18.  We have to inoculate them first.  There is no guarantee they won't see and hear things they shouldn't even at a very young age because they will be exposed, hopefully to a small degree but they will be exposed.  A few questions should illustrate the point.  Do they have friends in the public school?  Do they have cousins in the public school?  Do you watch TV and movies?  If you have HBO or Showtime in your home (never mind what's on the rest of broadcast and cable TV) you are crazy.  I strongly suspect that almost no home school families have HBO etc, but what about your friend's homes?  What about when your kids get older and you go on a trip and they get to stay in their own hotel room which will have HBO?  Sooner or later the Devil will get his message to your kids.  The Devil always prefers sooner, will we beat him to the punch?

From the time a child is born until they turn 18 are over 6,570 days.  No matter how good our defenses are eventually the Devil will break through.  It's just a matter of time.  We have to train our children from a very young age to know who the enemy is, how to identify him and what to do when they see him coming.

Elder James Taylor


An article in the Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Sun Sentinel last year noted the sharp increase in sexual assaults among grade-schoolers in the area, including a 10-year-old and 11-year-old accused of raping a 5-year-old girl; a 9-year-old accused of sexually assaulting a 2-year-old and a 6- and 7-year-old accused of simulating rape by rubbing up against a playmate.  Sheila Rapa, a child psychologist interviewed for the story, noted how rapidly violent sexuality has infiltrated the world of children. "When I started doing these psychosexual evaluations in í94, it was a different child I was evaluating than Iím evaluating now Ö [todayís children] talk about adult sexual behavior, they talk about oral sex, anal sex, things that children even 10 years ago didnít have knowledge of."  The article highlighted several reasons for this downward spiral among young children, chief among them being sexual abuse at home and exposure to pornography. While itís true that every person who delves into this seedy world will not necessarily turn into a criminal, one thing is certain: Exposure will warp the minds of not only children, but men and women as well.   http://www.family.org/docstudy/newsletters/a0037933.cfm

 
 

10/1/2006

 

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