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“The simple message of It Takes a Village is as relevant as ever: We are all in this together.”- HRC, It Takes a Village
That is, until the going gets tough. Then you’re on your own.
If you would have told me two years ago that homeschooling numbers would jump from 2% to 11% in the matter of one school year, I would have laughed. I’ve been homeschooling and working with homeschoolers for over 2 decades. If I’ve learned anything about my fellow parents, it’s that most of you don’t want to or simply can’t take on educating your own children for whatever reason. I get it. Homeschooling is not for everyone. Not everyone is called to this lifestyle. But everyone can do it, as all of you parents figured out when your schools and childcare options shut down abruptly and left you in the dust to fend for yourselves. The village collapsed and decided to serve itself, not only at the peril of your child’s education, but also of his health and mental well-being. Apparently, we are not really all in this together.
“Home is a child’s first and most important classroom.” – HRC, It Takes a Village
You’re darn right it is. Except we send our kids away from home and family for most of his waking hours to learn, to recreate, and just about anything else to keep him busy. Then in the blink of an eye, all of that was taken away and we struggled to figure out why our kids didn’t adjust well to being locked up at home. If there is data out there to back up the following theory, I haven’t seen it. Maybe no one wants to make the correlation that having the village as the primary caregiver and the institution a child depends on most might not have the best outcome. When we do not model home and family relationships as most important and present them to our children as a focus of support, and it turns out that’s all he has when the village fails him, what do we expect? Why aren’t they happy? Why are childhood obesity and anxiety and suicide and the need for therapists skyrocketing? This is why we homeschoolers consider the S question (socialization) a joke and have relegated it to the dustbin of history. Our kids do participate in outside activities under the instruction of others, but we do not make that our master. To the 11% club: you get it! You got the message that making the village the center of your child’s universe might be unwise for your family.
“We are living in an interdependent world where what our children hear, see, feel, and learn will affect how they grow up and who they turn out to be.”- HRC, It Takes a Village
The past year-and-a-half really should have been a wake-up call, and for some, it obviously was, or we wouldn’t have the mass exodus we do from public school. As most parents have gone ahead and sent their kids back to the village, we are greeted with TikToks of last year’s heroes carting their homemade headstones to their state capitols, calling for a four-day workweek with a pay raise, or demanding that their disease-vector charges get vaccines just so the fearful, already vaxxed, grown-ups might be doubly protected. Disturbing videos are circulating of children screaming as they are forced to wear masks just so they can eke out an education. Photos abound of barricades around school desks so kids don’t pass around an airborne virus. Stories are shared every day by concerned parents of kids lined up or sitting in neat rows, six feet apart, unable to face each other at the lunch table or even talk to one another. It may not be your kid or your school or your teacher, and maybe just a little of that is going on, so it’s easier to just look the other way because your children are finally back with their friends. I get it. But the mental anguish our future adults will continue to experience by being back in this environment, whether it turns them into germaphobes, or they are bullied over masks, or scolded because they don’t understand what six feet is, can’t be worth the two or three hours a day of academics. It just can’t be.
“Knowing what to expect next gives children a sense of security.”- HRC, It Takes a Village
Not even the adults in the room know what to expect next. What’s to keep the village from collapsing again? Certainly not the need of parents or the children they are supposed to serve. If that was a consideration, this wouldn’t have gone as far as it has. Why did schools open in Arizona and Florida and Texas but California and New York didn’t feel the need to get back to helping the children they say they care about? The powers-that-be continue to use your kids as a bargaining chip and then they use made-up science as an excuse to continue the insanity just to see how much you will take. You see, the village considers your children as theirs. It can do what it wants, when it wants, how it wants; all without your input. Time and time again, we see the head of teachers’ unions, administrators, and educators themselves collectively refer to your kids as “our kids” when trying to put their disastrous policies into place. Like they are doing you a big favor. You are one big happy family, after all. News flash: government school workers are subservient to us, the taxpayers. Somehow that has gotten reversed and now the village, including all its bureaucrats, knows you rely on it as you happily send your kids back to it, even though you hate many aspects of it. It will never break until you bend it. All of it. Do you get it?
“I’ve seen the village and I didn’t want it raising my child.” – Laura Gadbery, and others