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January 16, 2009

Educational ideologies

I could not agree more with Ellen Goodman’s recognition of the problem when ideology, not science, guides educational efforts (1/4, Opinion, “Abstinence-only sex ed fails another truth test”). She failed to mention, however, that in general, a progressive ideology guides such efforts.

For example, she might have mentioned the failure of teaching moral relativism in place of character education. Furthermore, she could have mentioned the disastrous failure of the self-esteem movement in which the empty praise of students replaced genuine opportunities to boost self-esteem (that is, by actually succeeding), or teaching Darwin’s theory of evolution to students as scientific fact.

She might have also mentioned the effort on the part of educational reformers to eliminate competition from the classroom, in spite of the failure of such efforts to pass the truth test.

Thank you, Ellen, for reminding us that educational efforts often fail because they are guided by ideology, not by sound research.

Jared Bartels
Lee’s Summit



General Sex education with an objective cirriculum is one thing, when it turns lefty and "tolerant" that is another issue altogether. When educators promote promiscuous behavior thne legislators pass laws that foster this behavior, that is morally bankrupt. What is the deifnition of parenting, according to the majority the first priority is entitlements not parenting and moral fabric.


I agree it's the parents jobs to teach character building and self-esteem, but some reinforcement in school wouldn't hurt. Besides, many parents have issues of guilt, low self-esteem, anxiety, and depression -- it's hard to teach kids how to love themselves when the parents struggle with it.

Besides, when kids learn about these thingsin a classroom full of their peers, it can take on more meaning than when they hear it from their parents. If you're a shy kid or a geeky kid by nature and you're openly discussing character issues with the popular kids and the cheerleaders, that can only be healthy. So I think it wouldn't hurt for some supplemental education at school, even though this kind of thing really does start at home.


It is the parents' responsibility to teach character education.

I can remember back in the 80s when the right wing complained that the liberals were forcing schools to teach character education. Now they want it since they took their right wing agenda for our kids and call it 'character education'. A bit too transparent. And really, not an issue at all if we let parents take on this responsibility.


I don't understand the point for a whole "Sex Ed Program". How many semesters does it take to say "wear a condom"?

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