Wednesday, February 23, 2005

We have a new state in the Union!

The Nanny State! Atleast if one Senator gets his way. This new bill titled Education Begins at Home Act and promoted by U.S. Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo is nothing more than the state trying to take more of what doesn't belong to them under the guise of "helping" the children. Here's what Mr. Bond says,

"Being a parent is hard work, and babies do not come with directions,” Bond told state representatives and senators at the Capitol. “We must help parents and give them the education and support they need to promote their young children’s healthy development and prepare them for success in school and life.” (snip)

The act was inspired by a program called Parents as Teachers, which Bond created in 1981 while Missouri governor. Parents as Teachers is an early-childhood program designed to help families from the time of pregnancy through the time their children enter kindergarten. It aims to enhance child development and school, and it is available to all families regardless of socio-economic level or location.

The problem is that the state's track record with the students that they are already allowed to educate is lousy and now they want to "help" with the younger years as well? Sorry Mr. Bond, if I needed a nanny I'd hire one (and it wouldn't be a state employee).

Just out of curiosity I checked out the Parents as Teachers site and here are some "helpful" tips

Play is so important for your child’s development. You already know your child gains intellectual skills as he figures out solutions to problems when he plays, but playing can also help your child learn skills such as focusing his attention on a task or sitting still while he plays. This is called self-regulation and it is an important skill for your child to have by the time he enters school.

Self-regulation is important in school readiness Self-regulation is a term that refers to the child’s ability to focus his attention and control his behavior. He must understand what is asked of him in a given situation, monitor his own behavior to see if it matches, and maintain or change what he is doing based on his evaluation. Teachers know the importance of self-regulation. A child who is self-regulated can stay in his seat and focus on the task at hand. He can pay attention to the teacher when she is talking or reading out loud without being unduly distracted. And the self-regulated child can make productive use of time when the teacher is busy with other students; he does not require the teacher’s constant attention to learn.

Many educational studies show that when parents read to their children from the time they are babies, children learn toread earlier and are better readers later in school.

From these suggestions it seems as though the goal of parenting is to get the child ready for school and the teachers. Mr. Bond seems to be saying that education begins at home but ends with the state. Sorry that's not why I am raising my children.


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