• The 2006 Weblog Awards

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“It Takes a Village”

The lastest on trying to make parents accountable can be found here:

A Republican state lawmaker from Baytown has filed a bill that would charge parents of public school students with a misdemeanor and fine them for playing hooky from a scheduled parent-teacher conference.

Rep. Wayne Smith said Wednesday he wants to get parents involved in their child’s education.

“I think it helps the kids for the parents and teachers to communicate. That’s all the intent was,” Smith said.

Let me make it clear. I’m against the idea of fining parents for not making a scheduled parent-teacher conference. It wouldn’t do any good in the long run and, quite honestly, only supports my concerns about prescribing the “right path” for society. It’s wrong not to come to parent-teacher conferences, so let’s fine the parents. People can’t figure out that trans-fat is unhealthy, so let’s ban it. Those poor workers at the diner. They can’t handle the smoke so let’s ban smoking so everyone is healthier (um, weren’t people smoking when you applied there?). And so on, and so on.

I think these problems go back a number of years, when people decided that it takes “a village” to raise kids. Once that was happening, why would the parents feel like they need to be involved, really? Won’t someone else take care of that? Why a conference with a teacher…how inconvenient when Mommy [Daddy] has a deadline for tomorrow?

My hubby and I are virtually drooled on by the teachers when both of us come to parent teacher conferences with our children so we can all talk together about their progress, focus in the classroom and what we can do to help them learn even more. It truly is sad that some parents aren’t involved. As parental responsibility has been delegated out amongst “the village” those parents with no backbones seem to have accepted their fate and given up having any influence, involvement or control over their child’s education, healthcare, social life, circle of friends, television habits, game playing, etc. Shoot, who needs Mom or Dad when all of that is prescribed, has a rating or a label saying it is okay for Mom or Dad to let their kids listen or watch it. Do I think it’s bullshit? Absolutely. But it’s a way of thinking I’ve seen many around me adopt. And it’s sad for the kids. And for their kids. And sad for us when we need to rely on them to manage our country, our money and our care.

    February 2007
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