Covert educational coercion

“My re-wordings of what people say about a child, usually to make it about an adult, but in this case making it about learning to breathe instead of whatever the poster was saying children need to learn, aims to show the reality of what is being proposed.”
– Sarah Fitz-Claridge


From the archives: Posted on the Learning list (a radical unschooling list) on 7th November, 1994

[The first post in this discussion is here.]

Perhaps this might help? My slight re-wording of what you said (as follows) is just to show you how it is that you could be taken to mean something you are saying you don’t mean. Longer posting follows.

“Let me try again. I think it is important for any human being born into the world to learn to breathe. I am not making a statement about what I want to impose on the helpless, I am merely making a factual statement about life out of the womb. I am waiting to hear someone say that this observation is false.
           On the subject of ideas, how about giving the child access to as many as possible of the good and as few as possible of the bad. This can be done without explicit censorship, but I have no objection to secret censorship of which the victim is not aware; I have simply not taken the trouble to point out all the possible programming that my child might enjoy more than what I think is (self-evidently) best for him, nor all the possible newsgroups on the net. I sometimes read home-ed with my 4yo, but he won’t find alt.barney.die.die.die until he does it on his own.”

BTW, When you said “I have simply not taken the trouble to point out…”, that suggests you consider it more trouble to point out interesting things than worthy things.

See also:

Sarah Fitz-Claridge, 1994, ‘Covert educational coercion’,

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