Monday, November 30, 2009

Normal service resumes

B has passed her last set of exams. We are all looking forward to seeing a lot more of her at home again. This morning, both of us tired after a broken night's sleep, she was a little short with me over something inconsequential.

"You're right," she said when I asked her what was wrong. "I've forgotten what it's like being around you."

Thursday, November 26, 2009

The lunatics are of our own making

In response to Karen Redman's heartwrenching post on her son's schooling.

Karen - I am unencumbered by a detailed understanding of secondary education; both my children are pre-school age. I’m guessing then that the ghastly situation you describe so eloquently is broadly a symptom of something even more tragic, namely the societal rot that grips us. Yes, I'm sure there are schools that need to improve the quality of education and care provided, but hasn't that always been the case?

I suspect it is the increasingly widespread dysfunctional behaviour of children, rather than a nationwide collapse in the quality of teachers, teaching and school funding, that prevents so many youngsters today from enjoying an enriching and rewarding learning experience at school.

At some point over the last couple of generations, we seem to have lost sight of how to nurture the basic values children need if they are to become responsible members of society as adults. Respect for elders and family; an understanding that needs are fulfilled through hard graft; tolerance, acceptance and thinking of others; a sense of purpose in life and an understanding that we exist as part of a community and not as individuals, to name but a few.

Our consumption driven, selfishly motivated way of living today seems entirely at odds with real happiness and fulfillment both for children and society as a whole.

Fortunately for your son, he has the most important provision on his journey through childhood; parents who care deeply and who will stop at nothing to help him on his way. Bravo!