The most fundamental problem with the current school system is that it leaves parents out of the equation. It’s not that parents should be more involved in their kid’s schools. That wouldn’t necessarily improve things, and it could potentially make them even worst —see for example the pandemic of parents asking for more homework, more school hours, more testing and less vacations.
When I tell other parents that we homeschool, they tend to freak out. However, they don’t realize they’re probably homeschooling as much as we do. Every time a parent sits with his child to help him with his homework, every time a kid asks an academical question to his parents, every time the kid is with his parents and learns anything he could learn in the presence of a teacher, we see homeschooling in action. Of course, a parent can’t teach everything, I’m not stating that. What I’m saying is that parenting, as a whole, should have never been discarded as an educational force, specially in regards to the basis of pre-curricular education.
Let’s keep in mind that in all democracies the legal and moral obligation to provide an education for a child leans clearly on the parents side, not on the State. The State helps parents by creating and approving and official educational system. And within, it provides a wide range of schools and methods for the parents to choose from. But if the kids fails to be educated it is the parents, not the State, nor the school, nor the method, who will be held accountable.
Having established the obvious dangers of letting parents run a school, and the fundamental need to let parents pull their educational weight, how should we proceed?
First, the school should relax. It should stop trying to parent kids and it should focus only in the task it was designed for.
For years we’ve heard the cries of schools and principals complaining about parents that neglect to educate their kids in the most basic ways. But nothing has been done. This parents transfer their very own fundamental responsibilities to the school, forcing well trained teachers to spend endless hours parenting their pupils, and thus preventing the school, and the rest of the students, from doing anything else.
If parents are lost, busy or going through a rough time they can be helped by the school in any conceivable way that will not spoil them. Let’s keep in mind that the school only can if parents do.
This would free the school of a tremendous weight, allowing it to focus on the real challenge: getting kids ready and skilled for an unimaginable future. This task alone is of epic proportions and just can’t be done without everyone doing its fair share of the work.
WORK IN PROGRESS