“William Temple characterized this as a ‘cut flower civilization.’ It appears beautiful, but is cut off from its roots, the value system that nourished it. Signs of withering may be detected in increased criminality, salaciousness, profanity, vulgarity, and uncontrollable drug culture. Instead of emphasizing values proven by years of societal experience, liberal education has frequently capitulated to the demands of pressure groups that have never been exposed to, or have never gained an appreciation of, these values. Legitimate criticism has asserted that often in the past morality has been taught but not practiced. But it is infinitely more difficult to practice if it is not taught. Freedom of inquiry need not be accompanied by freedom from morality.” (W. Ivan Hoy, “Education and Morality” Baker’s Dictionary of Christian Ethics, Carl F.H. Henry, Ed. Baker Book House Company, 1973, Pg.200)
Our public educational system has been overcome by educators who either do not know or do not care what children need to know to live effectively in the world. They have promulgated a curriculum that omits the basic responsibilities of schools and teaches curricula that usurp the responsibility of parents.
Unhappily too many parents are complicit. They have abrogated their responsibility to train their children, opting for the schools to be the baby sitters, so both parents can work.
I witnessed the genesis of the parental side of the problem. In the 1960’s, I worked in mortgage living. Our culture expected that the men would work outside the home and the women were mothers, they raised the children. Our lending practices expected a home to be purchased on the basis of the man’s salary. The wages a woman earned were extra. So, lending policies were to assess whether a woman was in the child-bearing ages and whether her job was “professional”. To secure a loan, lenders had to consider that women who were likely to have children were also likely to stop working when children were born. That would necessarily decrease the security of the loan. Women who were professionally employed were less likely to have children interrupt their earning capacity.
Then the Law changed. Lenders were required to assess a woman’s earnings the same as a man’s. Thus, the “extra” when included allowed couples to by a better home or have more money for other things.
I watched the consequent escalation of home prices, so that after five or more years, women were forced to work in order to afford a starter home.
That put strains on young families, causing homes increasingly to be out of reach for young couples. The snowball effect was that children were raised by childcare agencies, because their mothers needed to work to afford a home. That in turn eliminated the home nurture and the loss of family values inculcated in the children from the beginning of life. In addition, young couples were forced into apartment living, instead of a home with a yard. The children in early development had no place to play outside on their own; no opportunity to explore more broadly, no place to make mud pies (don’t discount the value of mud pies).
The Federal, Government acknowledge the problem in our public schools. Our children are getting an inadequate education to compete with children of other nation’s schools. My wife, Ruth, when teaching Middle School, several years ago, pointed out to her class that they were not competing against one another for jobs. When they grew up, they would be competing with people educated in other nation’s schools.
A 2004 report, titled Ready or Not: Creating a High School Diploma That Counts, found that employers and colleges are demanding more of high school graduates than in the past. According to Achieve, Inc., “current high-school exit expectations fall well short of employer and college demands.” The report explained that the major problem currently facing the American school system is that high school graduates were not provided with the skills and knowledge they needed to succeed in college and careers. Furthermore, “While students and their parents may still believe that the diploma reflects adequate preparation for the intellectual demands of adult life, in reality it falls far short of this common-sense goal.” The report also stated that the high school diploma itself lost its value because graduates could not compete successfully beyond high school, and that the solution to this problem is a common set of rigorous standards. (“Ready or Not: Creating a High School Diploma That Counts”. Achieve, Inc. December 10, 2004.)
Over the last 20 years, the Federal Government has passed several laws in an attempt to rectify the failure of the public schools:
I have not been able to find any significant improvements in student outcomes.
Another hindrance to student education is the teachers’ union. They refuse to allow financial rewards for excellent teachers. They also protect inadequate teacher from being fired. Thus, the quality of teaching is generally lower that it should and far less than optimal.
A further problem it the hazard that students and teachers experience. Discipline is hamstrung by political correctness. Teachers cannot exercise corporeal punishment, cannot even touch students. If a student chooses to be rowdy and disrupt the class. The teacher has few options. She can send the student to the Principal’s office, if she or he willing go. If they will not, she can call in the Principle, who is also under the same restraints. In the meantime, no education goes on, so all the students lose out.
The three main types of alternative schools are
Charter School is “a public school that operates as a school of choice. Charter schools commit to obtaining specific educational objectives in return for a charter to operate a school. Charter schools are exempt from significant state or local regulations related to operation and management but otherwise adhere to regulations of public schools — for example, charter schools cannot charge tuition or be affiliated with a religious institution. (because they are publicly funded)
In other words, charter schools are publicly accountable—they rely on families choosing to enroll their children, and they must have a written performance contract with the authorized public chartering agency. Charter schools are also autonomous—they have more flexibility in the operations and management of the school than traditional public schools.
They are generally more effective in teaching and in producing competent graduating seniors.
A study conducted by the Washington State Charter School Commission showed that on average, median rates of growth were higher at Commission-authorized charter public schools, as compared to the schools that students would have been assigned, based on their home address. (https://wacharters.org/our-why/)
Private Schools are privately funded and have curriculum independent of public schools. They are able to focus on the student’s needs and to guide the students to a better education. Generally smaller, they are able to fewer children in their classes, giving students more personal help. They challenge the students to higher achievement. The do not let slow learners fall behind. Classes are taught by independent teachers that can often write their own curriculum.
We thrive on competition and challenge. We are dynamic, innovative, decision making, action oriented people. We like nothing better than to spot an emerging need of families or society and respond to it quickly with an appropriate program or service.
“We cherish autonomy. We can act, unfettered by Boards or Trustees or elected officials. Of course that does not mean that we have no one to answer to for our actions. Far from it, we are governed by the free market. If we provide the quality of programs and services that families want and need, we attract and retain students: if not, students go elsewhere. We know of no better regulator that that. (National Independent Private Schools Association)
Home Schooling is increasing in popularity.
… parents educate their children at home instead of sending them to a traditional public or private school. Families choose to home school for a variety of reasons, including dissatisfaction with the educational options available, different religious or educational philosophies, and the belief that children are not progressing within the traditional school structure. (What Is Homeschooling? A Guide for Parents and Students)
While the overall school-age population in the United States grew by about 2.0 percent from spring 2012 to spring 2016, data from 16 states from all four major regions of the nation showed that homeschooling grew by an average of about 25 percent in those states. If the data from these states are representative of what happened in the other states during those four years, then homeschooling is continuing to grow in both absolute numbers and as a portion of the overall school-age population. (Homeschooling Growing: Multiple Data Points Show Increase 2012 to 2016 and Later)
In far too many cases, parents do not have a choice. The public school is “free”, but parents still have to buy all school supplies and there are costs for lunch and activities, etc. Most cannot afford private schools. There are far too few publicly supported Charter Schools. Too many parents are engaged with work, so home schooling does not fit their schedules.
Further the teacher’s unions fight hard, spending large amounts of money to advertise and lobby to keep the status quo.
Our culture has changed drastically. When I was growing up, parents were expected to train their children. They instilled in their sons and daughters basic morality. They taught them to be generous to others, to be respectful of elders, to be polite. to not hit, to not lie, etc. They taught by example, by correction (when given something, “Say, ‘Thank you’. “Say, ‘Please’, when asking for something.”) We were also taught by discipline. Spanking was common. The joke was, “The board of correction applied to the seat of the problem.”
We grew up in a polite society and we continued to make it polite. Because of common morality taught, the culture was safe for children. Adults looked after children in the absence of their parents. That was because the social interchange was based of the Judeo-Christian morality, i.e. the Commandments of God.
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and all your mind. And a second is this, you shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Deuteronomy 6:4-7)
This meant we treated (and were trained to believe) everyone was equal.
Parents were the first “school teachers”. In our fragmenting society, parents are losing the responsibility of training their children. In three generations we have gone
Today young Christian parents, believing parents, that is, need to depend greatly upon the Holy Spirit to give them wisdom. He knows the godly way to raise their children. That takes time, repetition, both home education in Christ’s life and teaching, and in addition, a faithful church school to reinforce the parents’ godly instruction.
Teens need a strong faith to counter the peer pressure to adopt the immorality rampant in the culture. They need to be able to stand up to the ridicule for keeping pure. They need to have ready answers for the Hope that is within them.
Tragically all believing children need to understand from an early age that most of the authority figures will be teaching them ways of living that are wrong according to their parents and God. Parents must be engaged in the public schools more diligently that in previous generations. They MUST know what the schools are teaching their children. Parents must demand that their sons and daughters be excused form improper and/or sinful instruction.
While we all pay taxes to support public schools, parents must face the financial sacrifice of educating their children in alternative schooling. Charter schools are often a good alternative, but there are so few of them (only 14 in all of Washington State) that there are likely none available. A private Christian school either Protestant of Catholic, is likely an expensive option, but they are worth the sacrifices. I can personally testify to both – sacrifice and worth. Home schooling (with sacrifices) allows the parents to continue their godly influence through High School. It also makes possible family exploratory outings.
Parents are not alone. That is what is so great about Omnipresence. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are with each one of us all the time. Believers have merely to turn their attention to Him and they have the resources of the universe at their disposal. Parents have the privilege of additional help, because the Almighty God is keen on educating children in the most holy faith. Our Father wants His wee ones and children and teens to be comfortable in turning to Him often for instruction, for help, for deliverance from threats, and just because they love Him. Jesus has many lessons to teach children of all ages, so He is there with parents giving them what they need. The Holy Spirit of truth, will manifest gifts of wisdom, discernment in parents as they are open to Him. He will teach all about Jesus and help the children remember what they need when they need it.
God has not gone away to tend sheep in other pastures. He is right here now and always, listening to you, regardless of whether you are listening to Him. He is deeply concerned with the correct teaching of children. The Holy Spirit is not a teacher of “Christian things” exclusively. He is co-Creator, along with the Son and the Father, of the universe. He knows math and all the sciences, history, geography, reading and writing, current events. He knows everything that children need to know to function in and alongside this society.
He can and will teach “bad stuff’ to train children what to avoid. It is not enough to train in what is bad, He also trains in what is good to replace the bad.
God loves Children. He loves parents. He loves Believers. Put them all together and you have a winning combination. Parents can be confident that Their Gracious Lord will guide them to the best Schooling for their children. They can trust that Their Savior will lead them through all the sacrifices, struggles, threats and attacks to a successful and well-rounded education for their children. One that will give them a good foundation and get them started on the right path.
There is no power in Hell or on earth that can withstand the family that prays, all well- trained and one in the spirit. Our Farther is glorified in their praise. Jesus is triumphant over the world the flesh and the devil through them. The Holy Spirit will build up the children to be world-beaters as they mature. Which also means they will be world-changers, making this a better place to eagerly await His Coming.
Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus to rebuild the world as it was in the beginning—perfect in glorifying God!
This is a recurring feature. I pose a question in one issue. You have the opportunity to send me answers. I publish the best ones in the next issue. Please cite Biblical authority, and keep you answer within 250 words.
ANSWER: Obviously these are personal questions that only you and Jesus can answer truthfully.
You must face yourself in the mirror each day and in so doing you will know the truth. You are either in bondage to the self and Satan, or you are in bondage to the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul taught,
… and being made free from sin, ye became [bond]servants of righteousness. I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye presented your members as [bond] servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity, even so now present your members as [bond] servants to righteousness unto sanctification. (Romans 5:18-19)
All who are not saved are lost. But what are the lost saved from? There are only two kinds of people in the world, children of God and enemies of God. You know, when you think of it, it does not make good sense to be an enemy of the greatest force in the universe, the one who created you and has your life in His hand.
In John’s Gospel he states,
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him. (John 3:36).
This points out the Jesus, Who is God’s Son is the deciding point. You are either surrendered to Jesus and saved or surrendered to Satan and lost.
John made it more explicit,
He that hath the Son hath the life; he that hath not the Son of God hath not the life. (1 John 5:12).
Therefore, to be saved is to be delivered from God’s wrath and from eternal torment in Hell. It means that you are an adopted Child of God and have an eternal home with God your Father in love, joy and peace–and a lot more!
The second question refers to Jesus emphasis on “Baptism in the Holy Spirit”.
Read Acts 2 for the initial coming of the Holy Spirit. Everyone who is saved has the Holy Spirit living in his or her spirit. The “release of the Holy Spirit” refers to the believer recognizing the Holy Spirit within and then giving the Spirit permission to fill her or him and overflow in the manifestations of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:7-11 for one of the lists).
The Holy Spirit is the power of God. When He is released the believer has power to testify to his own salvation, witnessing to unsaved people. The Spirit gives the believer power to withstand attacks, both physical and spiritual. He is a boon companion in joy and in trouble. He comforts, guides, teaches. He is a very powerful friend that is always at hand. Believing in Jesus starts one on the journey to God’s Kingdom. Releasing the Spirit gives you help along the way.
Join me in bowing before our God in gratitude that we can speak directly and personally to Him. He is our loving Father, so we can embrace Him boldly, but respectfully.
Jesus, You said, “Let the little children come unto me, and forbid them not.” You said, “If anyone causes one of these little ones to stumble, it would be better to tie a millstone around your neck and be cast into the depth of the sea. You said, “Except you become as a little child you cannot enter the Kingdom of God.”
That tells us that You are deeply concerned with children. They are most vulnerable, because they are innocent. Their innocence endears them to You. That is why You call all of mankind to come to You in the innocence and vulnerability as a child.
Father, You love children so very much, it is a wonder that You put them in our clumsy hands and charge us with the responsibility of being stewards to start them on their lives. You have charged us to nurture and train them to be fit to take on the responsibilities as an adult. You have given us the responsibility to nourish them; to feed them healthy food, to feed their spirit with godly nourishment, and to train their minds to think critically, so as not to fall for deceitful allures that lead to evil thoughts, words and deeds.
We are struggling upstream against the current. The world is so full of evil, with wrong thinking, temptations of the body, the mind, the will and emotions. Strengthen our spirits to stand in the evil day (that is every day in this fallen culture). We would be faithful to You and to be a beacon of truth, righteousness, godly sense and an island of peace in the stormy waters of our society.
We can only do that in Christ. Give us the desire to seek after Jesus to the extent that we with Paul can truly say, “For me to live is Christ!” Only with Your help (or more properly) only in Christ can we stand in the hurricane of immorality, sectarian politics, inter-racial hatred, dishonesty of our leaders. and the pernicious people that assault us each day seeking to delude us offering bogus help.
Jesus, I need You every hour. You are my gracious Savior. In You I need have no fear. Thank You for teaching me that fear is a failure to fully trust my Father, and depression is losing track of Jesus my Savior; further, that worry is another manifestation of failure to trust my Father. My children are raised and thanks to You they love You and serve You. And so, it is with my grandchildren.
My lovely Lord, these blessings are mine because of Your coming into my life. Holy Spirit, Your power and gifts have drawn me into Jesus and out of the world. I am deeply grateful to You as well. Thank You Father. Thank You Jesus, Son of God and Savior. Thank You Holy Spirit my Guide and Counselor.
Hallelujah!! Hallelujah! Amen!