Parents are starting to pay more attention to the content taught to their children in schools. For working parents, worrying about what their kids were learning has typically been more than they could fit into a twenty-four-hour day. We have always trusted our institutions to decide what is best for our kids, assuming they were learning the essentials to prepare for a career upon graduation. Our shortage of time and attention has led to the circumstances we face now. Moving forward, we must stay aware that the public institutions we have always trusted do not necessarily have our best interests at heart.
When kids were forced to learn from home during the pandemic, parents had the opportunity to witness what their children were being taught. Most were surprised to find out the curriculum has dramatically changed from what we were taught when we were the same age. Back in the day, our biggest dilemma was that the school did not do anything about bullies. The school did not protect us from getting our feelings hurt – and we are probably stronger for it now.
Parents are beginning to fight back against school boards, speaking out about critical race theory and drag queen story hour as they realize their children are being taught divisiveness and sexualization at an early age. Rather than add lessons that would offer children educational benefits or skills, it has been infused with content designed to shape their morals, if not extinguish them.
The truth is the American education system has long trailed behind other countries. In other countries, students must learn a second language and spend many years doing so. In the United States, a foreign language is optional, and few students learn enough to have a conversation in a second language.
Unfortunately, the only immediate solution for parents is to seek out alternative education opportunities. For the time being, parents can turn to extracurricular sources for foreign language education. Ideally, the immersion experience is best for learning a language thoroughly and in a shorter time frame. The younger the child is at its commencement, the easier it is for the child to learn and retain that knowledge.
Taking Further Steps
The first step to understanding what your child is learning is to ask questions. We often ask, “how was your day,” but don’t go very far beyond that basic question to learn what our children are being taught in school.
If a young child is learning about political views, race theory or sexual preferences, clearly the curriculum is stepping over the red line and you should begin by expressing your concerns to the teacher.
There is power in numbers and if you find that a discussion does not offer the result you are looking for, teaming up with other parents to deliver a powerful message to the school can be a more effective way to be heard. Writing a letter and getting it signed by a large group of parents is a good start and expresses the concerns in writing.