Sara from Choice For Childcare was out there on Thursday working hard for us as Ken 'Daycare' Dryden took questions on the Globe & Mail's website. Sara remarked that our Ken seems to feel that parents are not the best people to take care of their own children. One response to her post really caught my attention, because if the writer really does think what he says, and if there are others out there like him, then I fear greatly for the future of our country.
'Elmo' (made up name? - Ed) posted the following:
Elmo Harris from Niagara, Canada writes: Sara Landriault, #3, perhaps you can handle your own medical emergencies, fix your own car, build your own house, teach your own kids from grade one through University. Instead of Medicare, maybe we should give you a few hundred dollars and tell you to take care of yourself. Maybe we should give you a few hundred bucks and you can teach your kids all they would learn in University. What we know about children and early childhood education today dwarfs anything parents could possibly know in their lifetimes. What you are saying is that you know how best to take care of your own children. You may believe that, but you would be depriving your children of a learning experience that is without parallel in human history. So, go ahead, take your $1200 a year for your child. As the world becomes more and more complex, your child will NOT be prepared to readily absorb those skills necessary to function effectively in the 21st century. However, in the future, we, and those societies where early leaning is a reality such as Japan and some of the Nordic countries, will need manual labourers and those people who are only prepared for the most menial of tasks. I am sure your child will thank you for it in the futureLet's take a closer look at some of this drivel.
First off, the medical emergencies. Now, there are times when we all have to take a trip to the doctor or the E.R. But there are also times when sensible, educated parents can take care of an accident or an illness at home without placing a burden on the overstretched healthcare system. 'Elmo' exaggerates in pursuit of his point, but actually, I would answer him that, yes, for a lot of situations I feel quite confident handling things and I actually want the responsibility of handling things for myself - unlike him.
"What we know about children and early childhood education today dwarfs anything parents could possibly know in their lifetimes."Speak for yourself, buster. I'm 38 years old, with nearly 20 years of post graduate work experience behind me. I know my child better than anyone else on this planet except her mother. And you think I'm going to believe that a 23 year old 'ECE' grad who barely managed to emerge semi-literate from Ontario's failing school system is going to be a better teacher to my 2 year old than her parents? If Elmo feels that he knows nothing compared to that ECE chicky, that's his problem, but in his position I wouldn't want the world to know I was that inferior.
As the world becomes more and more complex, your child will NOT be prepared to readily absorb those skills necessary to function effectively in the 21st century.Nope, that's right Elmo. My daughter won't be absorbing Liberal propaganda from her earliest awareness. She is learning language skills, craft skills, imaginative play, socialisation, to care for animals, to share, to laugh, to live. She has a vocabulary equal to that of most 4 year olds, two years early. Not because she's exceptional - although of course she is :) - but because we talk to her all the time. Yer 23 year old ECE chick might do that once or twice an hour in between the other 20 toddlers. Or she might not. You pays your money and takes your chances.
As for the frankly insulting and bizarre suggestion that today's home-raised children are the street-sweepers of tomorrow, it'd be interesting for Elmo to produce the scientific evidence to back that up. I have a sneaking suspicion we won't see that, because most teachers will tell you anecdotally that it's the home-raised kids who do better in school.
If 'Elmo' is for real and he's representative of the small 'l' liberal elite out there, we need to up the ante and make sure their vision never, ever, ever takes hold in this great country.