Cold Fury

Harshing your mellow since 9/01

The root of all evil

And of all our troubles, too.

In December, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Education released a “Draft Policy Statement on Family Engagement From the Early Years to the Early Grades.” It all sounds nice enough, until you start reading and you realize that the U.S. government thinks it’s your dad.

“It is the position of the Departments,” the draft reads, “that all early childhood programs and schools recognize families as equal partners in improving children’s development, learning and wellness across all settings, and over the course of their children’s developmental and educational experiences.” Equal partners? How generous of them! Later in the document, we learn that government schools—you know, those lofty paragons of excellence and common sense—should “offer families leadership training” and “parenting interventions,” “encourage family networks,” and, perhaps more ominously, track “family engagement data.”

What kind of “family engagement data”? I’m glad you asked. The draft suggests, among other things, “a valid and reliable assessment of the teacher/provider-family relationships,” the “number of home visits made by teachers,” and that time you forgot to bring in gluten-free cupcakes for the Winter Solstice Holiday. (They don’t really mention that last one, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.) This draft, as a reminder, was brought to you by the good folks in Washington, D.C., where the local public school system spends an average of $17,953 per pupil to get a mere 12 percent of their students proficient in geometry.

No one should be surprised to see the government encroaching on the family sphere. Nature abhors a vacuum, and in America, the traditional family appears on the brink of collapse.

Oh, there’s more to it than just that, and the encroachment is no more an accident or coincidence than the collapse of the family is. There’s an agenda at work here, and only a fool would be so blind as to fail to see it when it’s continually slapping us upside the head like it is.

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"America is at that awkward stage. It's too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards." – Claire Wolfe, 101 Things to Do 'Til the Revolution

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