Recently I have thrown my hands in the air and branded the world insane, utterly beyond help. Everyday provides more evidence to support this fact, but the data point that greets me today is partiuclarly hard to handle as my wife and I wrestle with the issue of public school (aka government indoctrination and rehabilitation centers) vs. Private/Home school.

Court allows survey of children on sex topics

WorldNetDaily has more gruesome details about this here, including excerpts from the offending survey (WHAT ON EARTH ARE THEY ASKING 4TH GRADERS SUCH AWFUL QUESTIONS FOR TO BEGIN WITH!) and the court's insane decision.

This survey is being given to kids only slightly older than my eldest daughter, and if you read the decision, you can see that it is nothing less than ominous. A shot accross the bow, and on this point I will indeed beat to quarters and run the guns out...on election day. Little good though it may do.

Which leaves me with the struggle of not knowing what to do with my own kids. I cannot fathom things are going to improve with the public schools, especially here in the greater Seattle area where insanity reigns supreme.

The only silver lining here is the fact that the 9th Circuit Court is THE most overturned court in the United States. Thank God for that...and if I may be so dangerously bold, as to say that it makes me awfully glad for those "red" states. But you see the 9th Circuit Court is referred to as "progressive"...and you wonder why I shun political candidates who wish to christen themselves similarly? Too close to home when you start trying to social engineer my kids.


Christina said…
It was because of things such as this that my parents pulled us out of public schools and sent us to private! My mom was very involved at our public school, even VP of the PTA. And when they decided to bring in a sex ed program (starting in the 4th grade) that included homosexuality as a viable option, they pulled us out. Now, at the same time my dad was trying to start his own business and money was really tight. My brother, the youngest, was going into kindergarten, my sister into the fourth grade and I, into the fifth grade. My mom got a job as the assistant kindergarten teacher at our school (and she is not college educated) and the school worked with my parents to help make it affordable... but I know that we sacrificed a lot (no family vacations, no new clothes other than our uniforms, no going out to dinner, etc.). We kids hated it then, but now that we are all grown up I would do the same thing. We went to a Catholic school (my mom looked at a couple of Protestant schools but she just couldn't get past a few issues and at least the Catholics "recognize" the Orthodox Church and don't condemn it). We are looking at sending our little one to the local, very new, Orthodox school here in Portland. And it will be a difficult sacrifice for us but I know that I can't homeschool (and I have a Master's degree in education:)... but it's for high school, not elementary.
Anonymous said…
Interesting that they argued it on privacy and due process. There IS NO CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO PRIVACY, it is an inferred right that grows out of the Roe decision. Most legal scholars acknowledge that Roe was BAD LAW, regardless of what they feel about abortion.

Given that it's a California court I'm not surprised. I wonder if you could have made an argument that such teaching violated the parents rights to freedom of religion. You could show that the schools already acknowledge their obligation to at least maintain a neutral stance towards religon by looking at the calendar of remembered days during year (kwanza, ramadan, christmas, etc).

Luz the Magpie said…
We have similar nonsense here in the UK right alongside regular reports in the press about kids leaving school with serious literacy and numeracy difficulties. If half as much effort was put into teaching them the three R's as is put into sex ed and political correctness they would be so much better off. Do I sound like my grandma or what? :-)
Anonymous said…
I decided not to weigh in on Susan's post about homeschooling, etc. because she was looking for the perspective of parent who had made the same struggle, and for once in my life I choose not give an uninformed opinion. Of course on your blog I feel no such inhibition, so here goes:
The biggest "make or break" issue I have in looking for the "future Mrs. Spasojevic" after sharing the Orthodox faith, will be a willingness to homeschool our children, whatever the cost. Since I doubt I'll ever be in a position to afford private school, and Orthodox schooling options are few and far between, for me homeschooling is the only other viable alternative. As far as I'm concerned, keeping children in public school makes raising them as pious Orthodox Christians (and may God grant that my future children exceed their father in piety!) exceedingly difficult. I don't think (and here I could be entirely off course) enough parents enter into the calculus of their decision whether or not to homeschool (or private school) their children the question "What if public school makes an atheist of my son/daughter?" Of course even the most pious Orthodox homeschooling environment cannot guarantee anything, but at least it is providing fertile ground. As you and Susan struggle with this I might suggest a book that I found very enlightening. It is titled "Family Matters: Why Homeschooling Makes Sense." It is written by David Guterson, the author of "Snow Falling on Cedars", who happens to live on Bainbridge Island. He and his wife homeschool their three sons, despite the fact that he is an English teacher (or was when the book was written) at the local high school. In any case he has some interesting things to say about homeschooling and the paradox of his employment. Barnes & Noble at the Alderwood Mall should have it (that's where I got my copy).
Anonymous said…
James, should you and Susan ever want help/advice about homeschooling, my mother is what you could call a "professional homeschooler". She's a certified teacher who began homeschooling in 1987, and is a teacher/consultant for Family Academy and teaches a learning center. She also knows quite a bit about the homeschool co-op model. She's kind of an "evangelist" for effective homeschooling, and I'm sure would be happy to talk to you and Susan.

Take a look at these for more info on what she does:
Susan Sophia said…
Thank you, Rada, for your comments! I invite your comments to my blog any time!!!
It is sooo funny that you mention that book because we have YOUR copy!! Dawn Truelove visited recently and brought us a bag of your books. She figured we'd see you before she would. In that bag is "Family Matters"...we laughed wondering what you were doing with it. I will definately pull it out now and read it.

Susan Sophia
Anonymous said…
I got to tell you all, we homeschooled and it nearly destroyed us. Homeschooling reagardless the cost? Get your priorities straight. There's worse things things than a secular education, I've lived them. Our experience w/ the local elementary school has been mostly positive and the people there are first rate. Better to focus on what's going to be best for the kids in the long run that adopt a rigid ideology. As we've seen with other cultures, some ideas can hurt more than they help. Even if they're well intentioned.

fdj said…
Steve's right...homeschooling doesn't, indeed cannot, work for everyone.

And we do need to keep in mind that this court decision was dealing with a specific school district...meaning that such an ugly thing may never arise in your particular district. But you never know.

If only, as Luz suggests, they'd stick with the 3 R's and stop worrying about explaining why it is perfectly normal for Billy to have two mom's.

I do not know what the future holds for my kids at this point....but I'D SURE AS HECK VOTE FOR THE NEXT POLITICIAN TO COME ALONG OFFERING VOUCHERS.
David said…
‘"Schools cannot be expected to accommodate the personal, moral or religious concerns of every parent," Judge Stephen Reinhardt wrote for the panel. "Such an obligation would not only contravene the educational mission of the public schools, but also would be impossible to satisfy."’

Um, isn’t this then discrimination against the party on basis of their religious beliefs? I can recall the news crew showing up at my high school to cover a story that developed around a Seventh Day Adventist child who refused to partake in a classroom English assignment. She chose to sit in the hall rather than hear a Led Zeppelin song. The only ones who thought it news worthy were the news people. The rest of us students did what any high school teens in a similar situation would do — Whenever the cameras swung our way in the vast cafeteria, we’d make devil horns, as if we were at a heavy metal show. Our bark was far worse than our bite.

I also have friends who have home schooled their kids, one graduated from college now, one still in school.

In SF we chose to go with the private school, for many reasons both academic and because of language immersion.

However, no matter what course you take it is merely to equip your child to live in the world, while not being of it.

Here’s hoping a higher court turns this decision over.

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