Connells (connell@getonthe.net)
Wed, 17 Sep 1997 17:52:04 -0500

I would think that parents of immigrants are torn between conformity
with American mass values and preservation of their own cultural
values. It would be much easier to pass on their values if they were
not in conflict with public school culture. I saw Hmong kids in
Wisconsin try to dress in expensive baseball gear just to fit in.
Taking the pressure to conform off these kids would take the pressure
off parents, too.

Our two boys, born in Australia, fought to lose their accents to fit in
with other kids. They only began to see their own worth when we took
them out of public school.

Family and cultural values are very important to many of these
families. Show people that Sudbury type schools preserve these values,
and you may have some takers.

I saw an exhibition in Australia at Adelaide's Immigration museum. Kids
from various countries had exhibits about their lives, including their
most precious possessions. Numbered among these were religious books,
family heirlooms, ancient swords, and for the Australian-born boy, a
comic book(!). We could make everyone's most precious possession a
comic book if we send them all to public schools!

Christina Connell