Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model] (no subject)

From: Ian McKay <tidalpool_at_ns.sympatico.ca>
Date: Thu Oct 6 23:22:00 2005

Mark,

I was not attacking the use of a particular word. I was illustrating a point, perhaps my brevity came off as a bit harsh. My point was simply this. It does not matter how well intended the actions of some teachers are or what efforts are made to make compulsatory schooling "fun and [insert descriptive term here]". It is all still within an institution that is inherently damaging and morally questionable. I had a few good teachers....but that doesn't make "school" a good thing. Just as kindly slaveowners did not change the fact that slavery is wrong.

The bells, the mindless tasks, the lack of any kind of real recourse when one felt a grievance had occurred, the "reward and punishment" system of grades and [above all else] the theft of one's time to do as they wish is abhorrent.

This is also true...it hurts the teachers as well. As slavery hurt those who ran the system. Like you I tried to change the system and treat my students well. Each day I was also forced to make them do things I didn't agree with - enforcing regulations neither I nor my students had a hand in creating and following the approved curriculum. The strain of the situation, the demands on me personally to "maintain order" as the administrators liked to put it, the snide remarks teachers made about students in the staff room, my own misplaced anger at students who "refused to do as they were told"....these were all killing me. Then I realized we were all prisoners. I quit and have never regretted it.

I am sorry if my comparison of the school system to the institution of slavery made you feel uncomfortable. However, it doesn't make it any less apt. I believe SDG has this quote in his tagline....

"A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong gives it a
superficial appearance of being right.

-- Thomas Paine"

I apologize for offending but at least ot got your attention.

Ian McKay
Webmaster
http://www.amimckay.com
http://www.thebirthhouse.com
  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Mark MacFadyen
  To: discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
  Sent: Thursday, October 06, 2005 11:24 PM
  Subject: [Discuss-sudbury-model] (no subject)

  I came into this discussion group hoping to learn more about democractic schooling, and to challenge my own beliefs about education. I have been successful in this, as many contributors have written thoughtful dialogues. I am increasingly finding, however, that people are taking an authoritarian position, and attacking the use of particular words while losing sight of the overall point, which is helping people open their minds. I wonder if we could raise the bar a bit and get away from references to humanistic slave owners. I would like to continue in this discussion group; however, increasingly I'm being left with a bad taste in my mouth. Isn't the point to help people learn about democratic schooling?

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Received on Thu Oct 06 2005 - 23:21:52 EDT

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