Compulsory Schooling

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I think one of the biggest problems is the issue of compulsory schooling, schooling that is FORCED upon you until a certain age. There is a movement being referred to as the “deschooling” and “unschooling” movement.

Ivan Illich was perhaps the most well known person in this movement. In “Deschooling Society” Illich calls for the disestablishment of schools. He claims that schooling confuses teaching with learning, grades with education, diplomas with competence, attendance with attainment, and, especially, process with substance. He writes that schools do not reward real achievement, only processes. Schools inhibit a person’s will and ability to self-learn, ultimately resulting in psychological impotence.”

It seems others agree as well, there is a great article by Sarah Fitz-Claridge, a psychologist who says it is not crazy to dislike going to school, and she makes some VERY good points as to why that is in her school phobic article. Here it is from an expert:

“They are only imprisoned for five days out of seven. Super. And I suppose that the knowledge that they are to be locked up for five days a week for eleven years does not remotely affect them on the days when they are ‘free’? False. The psychological effects of school hang like a pall over children’s lives, twisting their thinking and stunting their intellectual and psychological growth, whether it is a school day or not.”
Read the rest HERE.

Now maybe the whole idea of having this so called “right” forced upon you isn’t quite that bad, however the specifics go way overboard. The time frame for instance…11+ years? That’s going too far. I say everyone needs to know how to read, write, speak properly, use correct grammar, and do basic math. So then what is there to do past about 5th or 6th grade? I don’t think that those first 5 to 6 years would be too horrible or have too much of a lasting effect. At least not one that holding a job later won’t already inflict on you.

Of course, there are those of you who will try to say that we need to learn all these advanced courses of chemistry, geometry, and calculus. I say, if you are going to get a job needing that, and you know you’re going to go into that field, then by all means study away. But otherwise anything you need to know later can be researched with our “oh so advanced technology” (google) and found in an instant. Memorizing pages of facts, dates, elemental signs, poems, and formulas of which we retain supposedly 20 something percent is just pointless. I say if the child is not interested they will not retain or hold the information and so there is no use in forcing them to sit in an institution for 7 hours a day with barely any break.

So there are the psychological aspects, and then the wasting of time. I strongly believe that kids could have been so much more productive throughout those years if they weren’t in school as much. The weekends are NOT a break, and school all day makes you want to do nothing but crash and sleep when you get home. The children could have been making something, inventing, discovering new thoughts and ideas they are INTERESTED in, or they could start contributing to and learning from others via various ways, such as on-line communities.

A good example of how things “COULD” be is another paragraph from the same article by Sarah Fitz-Claridge:

“Children whose parents would neither dream of forcing them to go to school nor of preventing them from going, and who support their children in anything they want to do, and who do not allow themselves to be drawn by the school system into a conspiracy against their children, have a very different experience of school if they do choose to go. Not having to worry about their parents’ approval (for they will have it anyway), they are free to take their teachers just as seriously as they deserve. They are free to do what they think right instead of deferring to authority. They are free to leave.”

That is exactly the way my parents were, and I tell you it is much better. I have been to school, attempted home-schooling, and  tried different things. I am currently home-schooled as I write this, and have to say that it is a preferred way to go if the parents are competent. But even if not, there is another alternative to regular school called unschooling, and we will talk about that and all the other alternatives on a different page later. Part of the point of that above quoted paragraph is that a lot does depend on the parents, and if they will cooperate and break free of the traditions, and stop doing what everyone “has always done”…it would be better for everyone.

I have to say that compulsory schooling…is not good in general. If anything is producing psychologically unstable kids, not really ready for anything, this is it. At least they are brainwashed to boot so that they will be able to function in society and do whatever their boss tells them. I just can’t support the education system of society anymore, it has gone down in value along with everything else. Unschooling is the way to go, or even homeschooling. If you have the means and the ways, I recommend it.


-Matthew Pizgatti

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About Matthew Pizgatti

"I Believe in Freedom. I believe in an educated populace. Above all I believe that most people have something to contribute to the world. My words and actions may mean little to some, but have great meaning to others. All I can do, day after day, is strive to do better than the day before. I want to share any knowledge I have of the world and skills I possess, so that others may benefit. I am always trying to learn about my hobbies/passions and always trying to improve my life as well as the lives of those around me."

3 Responses to Compulsory Schooling

  1. Pingback: Unschooling and Homeschooling | Truth and Survival

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