Since the beginning of time, we have been offered choices. We see a myriad at our local coffee shop, shoe store, grocery store, etc. Choices are freedom. Choices are expressions of who we are. Choices offer us the chance to embrace our individuality, express our creativity, and tell the world that we are in control.
You don't have people in your local coffee shop condemning your choice of a chai latte with whipped cream. You don't overhear people laughing at your decision to buy wheat bread intstead of white. But for some reason, we all feel entitled to judge others' choices of education for their children. This rancor over choice gets highly caustic when one is embroiled in the battle of the schools.
Primarily, it's public school vs. charter, but you can switch up the combatants any way you wish. Charter vs. homeschool, private vs. virtual school, public school vs. homeschool, ad nauseum.
You see, parents are on either side of the battle lines, and in that moment of picking our sides, I think we forget that we are all just parents. We are too busy trying to justify our choices to those on the other side of the invisible line of 'school-choice' to look over and see that mom or dad on the opposite side trying, just as hard as we are, to give their children the best education. We desperately want others to affirm our decision to public school, charter school, homeschool, or virtual school our children. We look to their failures to bolster our conviction that we made the right choice.
Isn't someone else's choice resulting in failure, an affirmation that I made the right choice and mine will result in success?
We fail to realize that we are unique and like us, so are our children. One-size-fits-all does not work for all children. The only children that will succeed under this rigid educational mold are the ones that can manage to squeeze themselves into it, thus abandoning their individuality in the effort to fit in.
My choice of how I educate my children is not a commentary on your choice of how you choose to educate yours. We have to avoid the temptation to turn our choices into weapons that we hurl across to the other side. Because if we could see past the insecurities, we might see ourselves reflected in the eyes of those across the battle lines.
Parents Advocating for Children and Teachers embraces a family's right to choose what method of education works best for them. We believe in 'parent-choice', as parents should be the ultimate decision-makers regarding their children's education. Under the Common Core, parent-choice becomes a moot point. Don't let your freedom and right to choose be quashed. Stop Common Core.
(Posted with permission from www.stopcommoncoreinoregon.com)