As a veteran teacher, I have had to wrestle with answering the question, “Should school replace home?” Though perplexing, the only answer that I could come up with is, “Yes…and no.” Why should school replace home? In the twenty first century, children have access to more influences and information than ever before. They are exposed to a plethora of negative images and lifestyles on a daily basis. Often times, school is the only place where they experience positivity or “good” behavior. School affords them the opportunity to learn about character, civics and life skills. This premise is based on the fact that many children spend most of their time in school and it is there that they experience most of their social interactions. Though often true, should school replace home as the primary source of learning morals?
The family unit, for centuries, has been the main vehicle in which children learn their morals and values. It is through the family unit, known as the “home,” that a child learns to emulate the patterns of their guardians and develops the answers that will help them function successfully in a productive society. However, in modern times, many have shifted their paradigm to the belief that school, not the home, is the appropriate arena where a child should learn valuable skills that pertain to society and character.
To make matters worse, over the last thirty years our society has experienced a breakdown in the familial unit, where almost half of our children are raised in a single parent household. Thus, many times, children receive there only consistent contact with an employed adult male or female in the school environment.
But there are many reasons why school should not replace the essential learning that a child can receive at home. It does not matter if this influence is positive or negative, the child’s environment shapes who they are, and it is human nature to follow and listen to the people who birthed and raised us. School cannot replace what children learn from their loved ones in a safe and nurturing environment. Parents and guardians must be responsible for instilling positive values to their children. Without these values, a society cannot prosper if its only means of morals comes from an institution. This has been seen historically through those nations that have fallen, because of their reliance on others to teach life skills. Therefore, as a nation that was founded on prudence, liberty and respect of the rights of all, we must not forget about the future — our children.
Written by: Byron Simmons Ed.S