Re-post: "Parents must do better" - Nov 06
From the BBC education news page, with my comments in italics.
Parents must do better - Johnson
The Education Secretary has said he wants to make it easier for parents to do more to educate their children.
It couldn't be easier. Just send a formal detter of deregistration to your child's school. Further details and legal position on the Education Otherwise and Home Education websites.
Speaking at a conference in London, Alan Johnson said it was time to challenge the perception that education began and ended at the school gates.
Hmmm. Alarm bells already ringing...
His comments came amid calls from the Daycare Trust to extend free childcare places, particularly for disabled children and those from poorer areas.
Mr Johnson said there were now twice as many childcare places as in 1997.
The minister said parents who took an active interest in their child's education could make "a massive difference".
Indeed. My own teenagers don't smoke, drink, take drugs, hang around in gangs, smash up bus-stops, get into fights or show signs of mental illness. They are all extremely eloquent and 100% capable of earning a living in any employment field of their choice. They learn and study under their own steam without having to be coerced, for hours a day. This is after 8 years of educational freedom from the compulsory state schooling system.
But he stressed it was not for the government to dictate to parents.
*Printing this and sticking it to kitchen wall.* Can it be signed by all MPs, please?
"Everyone needs a bit of help sometimes, whether it's a confidence boost, some practical advice or an urgent intervention," he said.
Maybe, but not at a cost of £billions to the British taxpayer. Caring parents do it for free, naturally. Especially if they manage to resist the government-driven social pressure to put their kids into full-time childcare as early as possible and 'get back to work'. It's only the children who grow up feeling no adults really care about them or are on their side who might need state-sponsored confidence-boosts, practical advice or 'urgent intervention'. This is how the state makes work for itself.
Among the suggestions he highlighted were to make parents' advice services more accessible and better publicised, and introduce longer opening hours into schools.
LOL yes, alienate them even further from their parents and their family homes. Someone pull me out of this yawning pit of sarcasm that seems to be opening in front of me, please?
"Although parenting is an intensely private matter, it has immense public consequences," he said.
Translation: You might think it's your business, but we're increasingly making it our business. Hey, we have an economy to fuel. Sod your family's mental health. Money comes first.
"We must make it easier for parents to do more to help the state with the education of their child."
"Parents help the state with the education of their child?" According to Section 7 of the 1996 UK Education Act, The parent of every child of compulsory school age shall cause him to receive efficient full-time education suitable- (a) to his age, ability and aptitude, and (b) to any special educational needs he may have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise. Not the state. Doesn't the state offer to help parents with the education of their child, then? Mr Johnson appears to have 'accidentally' reversed this legal fact.
For every hour a child spent in compulsory education, they spent more than 10 in the care of their parents, he said.
Most of it sleeping
Mr Johnson said many parents wanted more help and were turning to television programmes for advice.
"I have become aware of the voracious appetite that there is among parents for more information, more support and advice.
"A recent survey showed that almost three quarters of parents watched parenting programmes like Supernanny and over 80% have found them helpful."
Programmes that teach you how to bully your child into accepting authority. A tragic necessity when parents have lost touch with their children to the extent they now have, thanks to generations of enforced government intervention. What a sad world.
Children's minister Beverley Hughes told the conference bad parenting blighted communities and their children's prospects.
When things go right, the state is providing a great system. When things go wrong, it's bad parenting. Do people really fall for these lines?
"There are circumstances when parents' behaviour or indifference is damaging their children."
She said schools, health services and council services like libraries and sports facilities must focus on parents, in particular on fathers instead of always on mothers.
Complete the alienation process by making both parents allies of the state, and enemies of their children.
Earlier, Alison Garnham, joint chief executive of the Daycare Trust, said the government had made tremendous progress in developing new childcare places.
Childcare places free up workers, create employment, raise taxes, increase everyone's spending and increase family alienation. So of course they have, it's their raison d’être.
"But two years into the 10-year national childcare strategy there remains a considerable way to go in achieving our aim of universal childcare," she added.
"Our aim of universal childcare?" Aren't... parents.. supposed to provide universal childcare? Not any more, it seems. Orwell was dead right.
"Childcare remains expensive and out-of-reach for too many low-income families including lone parents and also families with disabled children."
Those children who need even more parental time and love than any others, then?
She said this appeared to be the case even after government help with the costs.
The trust also called on ministers to scrap plans to allow nursery class sizes to rise from eight children per teacher to 13.
Latest figures show there is one place for every three children under eight, compared with one place for every nine under-eights in 1997, according to a report by the Daycare Trust.
One in every 3 is quite encouraging actually. Does this mean 66% of children get to be with their parents instead? Hope so, but suspect not.
It also found parents in England met 75% of all childcare costs in 2004/5, considerably more than in Denmark where parents pay 30% of the costs.
Oh, not then.
Mr Johnson told delegates at a Daycare Trust conference that the government had already invested more than £20bn towards 1.3 million childcare places.
£20bn??? Mad, mad, mad.
Something's afoot: I see the government is making noises about changing regulation rules pertaining to home educators. (Thanks Tech.) Of course this will be after a 'consultation' during which parents all get to bust a gut stating their opinions, which will then be totally ignored. When legislation is enacted by the state, to further suit the state, the politicians will say they have 'consulted' and that most people want this to happen. Rubber stamp, and it's in. Let's not delude ourselves that this will happen, no matter how much desperate effort we invest to try to prevent it.
Personally I'll take action if and when my right to educate my children in the autonomous way that benefits them is legally challenged. I'm happy to debate and defend this educational system with anyone, any time, right up to the High Court and beyond, if pushed that far. My adult children are willing to stand as evidence that this kind of education works far better than anything offered by the state, measured by any standards except that of psychological compliance. They can measure us by that one if they dare.
I'll write what I need to, where I need to, I'll attend meetings, hearings, reviews, conferences, briefings, whatever it takes. We all will. If our legal right to take this escape route to freedom and good mental health is actually threatened by the state, that's when I'll take action. That's my battle line drawn.
Until then, they can send in their monitors and their assessors. I have nothing but good things to tell them and my meetings with them have always been educational for the officials involved, which is no bad thing in my opinion. And my children's 'work' will always remain their own private property. It does not belong to the state, any more than the children themselves do.
Posted by Gill to Sometimes It's Peaceful at 11/09/2006 11:03:00 AM