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Gov't support for Early Childhood Education: what is your opinion on this issue?


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Jessica's (Trivium Academy) post about her concerns regarding Obama, especially his education proposals, got me thinking about this topic.

 

It seems that many on this board--and on the internet, in general--are opposed to govt. proposals for early childhood education and accredidation of all schools.

 

Can you share more about why you are opposed to such plans? Or, if you support them, can you say more about that, too? I'm curious to know

your views on this topic, especially as homeschoolers.

 

Also, how do you feel such plans would affect your community? Your homeschooling family personally? Do you feel your rights as homeschoolers would be compromised or at risk?

 

FWIW, I graduated from a ridiculously dismal high school that lost its accredidation from the region's accrediting agency. My dh graduated from even a "worse" school, if that's possible, that was accredidated (not sure if academically it was worse--might have been a little better that way--but it was very dangerous and the majority of students dropped out).

 

We currently live in a town that has a reputation for "good schools", though that reputation is now fading, and for good reasons, imo. We also do not have a public school pre-k program with exception to the income-based Headstart. We have several private preschools, which are expensive and fill up quickly, and are thus not available to all interested residents. One of my dc attended preschool for a year, the other only went 4 weeks.

 

Our town is small, with a diverse mix of low, middle, and high income people. The public library is understocked, slow to update its materials, and doesn't provide many children's programs due to lack of interest.

 

So that's a little background about where I'm starting from.

 

Please share your views about govt. funded early education and accredidation, and why you oppose or support them.

 

Thanks!

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I support them wholeheartedly. If you don't want to send your children, then don't. If you can afford to send your kids to an expensive preschool / Montessori school / Waldorf school, then go for it. If you want to keep your children home during the preschool years, then go for that, too!

 

It's all about choice.

 

Low income families ... working families ... they don't have a choice. At least one that isn't going to cost them a fortune.

 

If you want folks to be educated, then you have to fund education. Period. And I'd rather see a 2 year old in preschool than parked in front of the TV eating Cheetos for 7 hours a day.

 

As I stated in the other post, my youngest daughter has autism. She was able to attend a special education preschool due to a government-funded grant (we live in a rural area and our school system couldn't afford to do it otherwise).

 

My daughter started the program at 3 years of age, unable to put 2 words together - literally. She's now speaking in full, grammatically correct, sentences.

 

She receives free speech and occupational therapy sessions twice a week through the public school system, even though she's homeschooled, because she's still "on the books" because of being in that grant program. Our health insurance wouldn't pay for therapy, and to pay for our ourselves through private therapists would cost us $125 a week - at least.

 

As long as individuals are allowed to say, "Thanks, but no thanks. I'm going to put my child in a homeschool / private school / parochial school setting," and that's a-okay with the government, then I'm all for funding any education programs.

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I don't support them because of the cost. I'm seriously opposed to anything that costs more money. We have a highway infrastructure that needs serious help, the military (enlisted) could stand a raise, and a tax cut for the tax payers is what we need more than more mandated education.

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Well I'm opposed to early childhood ed programs for several reasons:

 

#1 I don't think preschoolers and younger need it. I think they need to go play in the sunshine and mud and eat cookies and milk and fall asleep under a tree.

 

#2 The vast majority of such programs are just glorified daycare programs. I'm don't support daycare programs either. I would rather support a mother staying home and sharing cookie and milk under previously mentioned tree.

 

#3 The vast majority fo the programs include a lot of social enginneering programs. Lots of books about how having 2 mommies is okay and religions are equal and blabblahblah pc mumbo-jumbo. ABCs and 123s are only a small part of most of the curriculums.

 

#4 By the 4th grade, studies have shown all the kids have leveled out, you can't tell which ones went to preschool and which ones didn't. There's also some evidence that isn't discussed much that some kids being pushed so young are actually hurt academicly by the experience.

 

#5 I think preschoolers, and absolutely younger ones, should be cared for the majority of the day by a loving relative, preferably mom and/or dad. NOT by a state provider. The idea of my 2 or 4 yr old spending 4 - 8 hours at a facility with people who altho they might genuinely care, simply cannot love them as I do, literally makes me want to cry. I feel nothing but sorrow for families that have no choice because the gov't thinks it better to fund a stranger taking care of their kid than to give equal funding to a mother so she can stay home and do it herself.

 

ETA: #6 COST woudl be another for me. I think there are better uses for gov't funds. Esp right now.

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It would be nice to live in a world where all families could afford to have a parent stay home with a young child. Many Western democracies have much more generous parental leave policies than we do. But, as long as we have parents who must work, high quality day care where the child is read to, and all the other things, and is in a protected environment is better than cobbling together a bunch of neglectful relatives or undependable neighbors who don't interact with the kid from day to day, and all the other horrors we read about every day in the big city.

 

It is a privilege to be able to stay home with our children, but not one everyone can manage. As long as early ed remains optional, I'm all for it.

Danielle

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I might think more of them if K-12 education weren't already such a mess in most parts of the country. I don't think anyone should kid themselves that the reason Am. students are so unimpressive internationally is because they don't start school young enough. Adding more grades at the beginning of the institutional school track (or at the end with college being the current equivalent of high school for many), isn't going to fix what's broken. I'd be more impressed with creative solutions and alternatives to the current K-12 program being suggested with the money ALREADY being spent.

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I'm for it as long as it is not mandatory. There should be as many choices as possible for families. We are way behind in education, and it's scary that many countries much "poorer" then we have better educational systems. I would rather us spend more money on education instead of things like, larger highways and red-light traffic cameras. Education is the only way for our nation to advance as a whole. In the end, the more uneducated our population, the more we will continue to pay more and more for healthcare, housing, etc. We will also continue to lose jobs and industry overseas. Not until we pay our teachers as much as we pay our football stars/movie stars, will anything really change.

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Lots of books about how having 2 mommies is okay

 

It IS okay. Children need to be taught to respect other families and individuals, regardless of the choices they make for their own. There is a big problem in schools regarding abuse of kids who are gay or have gay parents. With education, this is starting to get better, although we still have a LONG way to go.

 

By the 4th grade, studies have shown all the kids have leveled out
That is a myth. My 7yo 4th grader is performing well above her grade peers in several subjects. Different kids have different abilities. While I agree that kids will be similar in ability to their true peers (kids of average ability will level out with other kids of average ability), a statement such as "All kids will level out by 4th grade" is simply untrue.

 

I think preschoolers, and absolutely younger ones, should be cared for the majority of the day by a loving relative, preferably mom and/or dad. NOT by a state provider.
That is what you think, and I respect that. However, kids who have two working parents and attend day care do not lead sad lives. I actually have known a few kids who would have been better off in a high quality daycare or preschool. Love is a wonderful and important thing, but that's not the only thing young children need.

 

Also, not all working parents are parents who HAVE to work to pay the bills. Many men and women have careers that are very fulfilling and important to them. They should not be forced to give those up because they also choose to have a family. It is difficult to balance work and family, and some parents fall short, but some also fall short in being a SAH parent or fall short with homeschooling. There are always going to be successes and failures, no matter what the choice.

 

I fully support early childhood education programs. When I found out I was pregnant, I went back to school for Early Childhood studies. I got to spend time in a variety of daycare and preschool settings. The star rating system (where schools can get additional money for making specific improvements) has done great things in my community. Programs like Head Start are making a difference in the lives of kids who desperately need them. Public Pre-K programs are an asset to both working and stay at home parents.

 

I am not threatened as a homeschooler by these programs. As a matter of fact, I think these programs can help improve the quality of homeschooling.

Edited by Academy of Jedi Arts
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It IS okay. Children need to be taught to respect other families and individuals, regardless of the choices they make for their own. There is a big problem in schools regarding abuse of kids who are gay or have gay parents. With education, this is starting to get better, although we still have a LONG way to go.

 

:hurray:

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I do not support it.

 

I do not feel that preschool is at all necessary. It is only going to make a large, misdirected, poorly run bureaucracy even larger and more powerful. (That would be our public school system.) If anything is done, it should be done as an entirely separate, new system that is called what it truly would be, publicly funded daycare. (I would not support that either.) It should be totally separated from the school system. Of course, I think that the current school system should be totally abolished; yes, wiped off the face of the earth. There is no way to "fix" it. It needs to be rebuilt from the bottom up. Sorry, that wasn't the question was it...

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Our country is not about CHOICE, it's about FREEDOM for choice. Let's not get socialistic and claim we should all have choice at no cost....there is always a cost to everything....

 

I think the greatest failure of our society in the past 40 years has been the breakdown of parenting.

 

*Kids need their parents HOME with them...I don't care which one...but if you're only on this planet for under 80 years..how hard can it be to take 10 years of your life and make sure you're home those first 3-5 years of life?

 

*I am completely against the government having anyone's child under 5 for more than 2 hours a day...hopefully those kids are napping during that time.

 

*Parents instill love, discipline, compassion, joy, faith, hope, security, confidence...that's our design. Can you honestly tell me that you're imparting those irretrievable gifts to your coworkers at a brick building the hours you're putting them in daycare?

 

I am vehemently opposed to daycare. period. I would rather shoot for the stars and get the moon...daycare is shooting into the ground and you're reaping the rewards now with out of control teenagers who never learned that they were valuable and needed...in a daycare setting with 20 kids and 2 supervisors who can NEVER match the role of a parent...you're creating a tragedy.

 

Why should the government perpetuate this tragedy? Why not instead put those billions into building programs that strengthen the family, encourage parenting skills etc.

 

Ya know why? Because they need both parents working two jobs to pay for all the reckless spending our government has its hand in...the kids will be fine, they're getting fed and sheltered aren't they?

 

You've hit my hot button and I can't wait for the day when I'm 80 years old and can be more forceful and crotchety and DEMAND that parents BE PARENTS...that's such a bold and controversial move when I'm only 40...

 

so to answer your question.. NO early childhood education..

 

YES TO EARLY PARENTING ROLES!!!

 

Tara

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It is the same with my son. How is it he would be at 4th grade level when he is in 4th grade if he is at 4th grade level when he is 6.5? That makes no sense whatsoever.

 

I wonder if homeschooling or other more flexible schooling set-ups (mixed grades, accelerated options) change the dynamic in cases like your son. He was able to begin real learning younger because you were aware of his needs and development and then able to *continue* learning as fast as his abilities allowed.

 

I think with the general statistics, it does seem to be true that even if a child starts younger at a good preschool (I'll leave someone else to define what that looks like) and is "advanced" going into K or 1st grade...if that child isn't able to move beyond his peers or is forced into a structure which does not suit his learning temperament, it's not likely that advancement will be sustained. He may still naturally have some giftedness, but one can only move forward if the information and tools are there to work that gifted mental muscle.

 

I just don't see that any great academic gains will be made if lower income kids start public preschool at 2, 3, 4 and do well there, but then are shuttled into crap elementary schools.

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*Kids need their parents HOME with them...I don't care which one...but if you're only on this planet for under 80 years..how hard can it be to take 10 years of your life and make sure you're home those first 3-5 years of life?

 

I am vehemently opposed to daycare. period.

 

What about single mothers? I believe the latest data shows that there are at least 10 million of them in the US (I personally believe the number is much, much higher than that).

 

They don't have the luxury of being a stay-at-home mom.

 

They don't get to have a choice.

 

And 55% of moms are working moms. Not out funding the yacht or the vacation home -- working to put food on the table.

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I wonder if homeschooling or other more flexible schooling set-ups (mixed grades, accelerated options) change the dynamic in cases like your son. He was able to begin real learning younger because you were aware of his needs and development and then able to *continue* learning as fast as his abilities allowed.

 

Let me use reading as an example here- I never taught my daughter how to read. She started picking up words before she turned a year old. At age 3, she was reading Little House and other children's novels. I still to this day have never done "reading" with her. She never went through level 1, then 2, then 3 like typical kids do. I never did anything different than other parents around me. We have books in our house, we read to our kid, my kid has been watching TV and on the computer since she was a baby. All those things some parents think are "so bad" for all kids- well we do lots of them. All those things parents do to "make their baby smarter"- we did none of that. I didn't create this. I can not take it away either.

 

True without the academic outlet, certain characteristics would express themselves in different ways, but the ability wouldn't go away. A profoundly gifted garbage man is still profoundly gifted even though he's "just a garbage man".

 

My kid is not particularly academic, she is nonetheless exceptionally gifted. She does do well in school but her strongest areas are her ability to understand, to imagine, to create, to express creatively. Being homeschoolers, it just means the academic part is a little easier than it would be fighting tooth and nail with the school for half of what my kid needs. We have to make more adjustments for her socially and emotionally than we do academically since we homeschool.

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What about single mothers? I believe the latest data shows that there are at least 10 million of them in the US (I personally believe the number is much, much higher than that).

 

They don't have the luxury of being a stay-at-home mom.

 

They don't get to have a choice.

 

And 55% of moms are working moms. Not out funding the yacht or the vacation home -- working to put food on the table.

 

 

You've answered my point! The breakdown of the family...but just because the family is broken does it mean we shouldn't fix it? Let's take a vase...it's broken..so now instead of picking up the pieces and putting it back together where it can hold water, we're going to sort out each of the pieces and allow the hammer (that which broke the vase in the first place) the ability and choice to smash every last single shard....

 

My point is...we've got shards..we've got to put the pieces back together, promote more programs for marriages...encourage parenting classes...strengthen the family..encourage and promote companies to offer flex jobs for single mothers..give tax breaks for those families living on one income, tax the heck out of luxury items..cars over 50k..telelvisions over 30 inches...let the churches and non-profit agencies fill the needs for those in NEED....that's how OUR government was founded and designed....

 

And don't get me started on the daycare..I feel just as strongly that 80% of those who use it do not have to. I see families with two brand new car payments, huge televisions, mortgages over their income...dropping them off at daycare. I also see families living on one vehicle that's 15 years old making sacrifices to make sure that they're kids have either a parent or a grandparent or relative taking on the role of rearing....the government should have NO hand in it.

 

We have more single/divorced mothers than any other generation? Blame the 60's and the onset of daycare..more of the same is not going to help.

 

Tara

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A government sponsored preschool should NOT be funded by the American tax payers. Head Start is already available to families who qualify. It's little more than a day care. That's fine, except it should be the parent's obligation to fund their child attending preschool or day care should they choose to work. Why should grandparents, childless (or child free) couples pay for a kid in day care so parents work? It's entirely socialist, and we were not established as a socialist society. We're inching toward it each passing day. We used to accept personal responsibility for our personal choices. Now we don't need to. Yell "unfair" often enough and the government will step in to clean up our mess.

 

Secondly, by allowing publicly funded day care/preschool it would inevitably become mandatory. Remember kindergarten, the half-day concept to ease a child into school? It's expected and those children are now learning what we did in 1st and 2nd grades.

 

Lastly, if we aren't going to give parents school vouchers why give parents free preschool?

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I support government funded preschool (and/or daycare) for children from at risk/low income families or those with special needs.

 

I oppose government funded preschool (and/or daycare) for most children.

 

Having children is a personal decision that carries personal responsibility. I am more than happy to support programs to help families in their time of need, but I have no desire to shoulder everyone's personal decisions all the time. Whether you have 1 child or 23, it's your responsibility to meet their needs.

 

I have no difficulty separating public K-12 from preschool. Okay, I would *prefer a 1-12, or even 2-12 system, but I won't complain about K. I might complain about full-day K. ;)

 

When it comes to academics and preschool, giving my money to the government so they can spend thousands of dollars on what almost any fool can do practically for free would really burn my butt!

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You've answered my point! The breakdown of the family...but just because the family is broken does it mean we shouldn't fix it? Let's take a vase...it's broken..so now instead of picking up the pieces and putting it back together where it can hold water, we're going to sort out each of the pieces and allow the hammer (that which broke the vase in the first place) the ability and choice to smash every last single shard....

 

My point is...we've got shards..we've got to put the pieces back together, promote more programs for marriages...encourage parenting classes...strengthen the family..encourage and promote companies to offer flex jobs for single mothers..give tax breaks for those families living on one income, tax the heck out of luxury items..cars over 50k..telelvisions over 30 inches...let the churches and non-profit agencies fill the needs for those in NEED....that's how OUR government was founded and designed....

 

And don't get me started on the daycare..I feel just as strongly that 80% of those who use it do not have to. I see families with two brand new car payments, huge televisions, mortgages over their income...dropping them off at daycare. I also see families living on one vehicle that's 15 years old making sacrifices to make sure that they're kids have either a parent or a grandparent or relative taking on the role of rearing....the government should have NO hand in it.

 

We have more single/divorced mothers than any other generation? Blame the 60's and the onset of daycare..more of the same is not going to help.

 

Tara

 

 

If I could rep you, I would!

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I do support child care assistance for the true working poor. I do not support daycare/preschool for children generally.

 

In theory, I support head start. I know it's not a perfect program, but in principal, I believe it's great to offer preschool programming to at-risk children. But I don't want to broaden that to include every child whose parents think that free preschool/day care would be a great option.

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...and DEMAND that parents BE PARENTS

 

Working parents are just as much parents as anyone else. It is statements like this that are the source of a lot of young moms having unwarranted stress when it comes to making the decision to work or stay at home. The decision to stay at home is not the right one for every family.

 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with working and wanting to have nice things. There is also absolutely nothing wrong with choosing to be a single parent, whether you make that choice at conception or because you are choosing to move on from a partner who does not enhance your life.

 

I chose to give up my career when I had my daughter. I thought I was just giving it up for a couple of years, but fate dictated otherwise. I certainly do not expect every other women to make the same choices I have. *MY* daughter is better off because of *my* choices, but for some families the other choice is BETTER.

 

I am very disappointed that in 2008 the "Mommy Wars" are still going on. We should have moved past this long ago. THAT, IMO is a failure on the part of our educational system.

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But I don't really expect anyone to support my decisions financially, and I really don't want to support anyone else's. I'm not asking for a subsidy for being a SAHM, and I don't want to provide free day care for those who choose to work.

 

I understand that for some people, working isn't entirely a choice. I have no problem supporting a program like Head Start that funds preschool/daycare for at risk, low income children. But I will not support a program that provides tax dollars to all parents who choose to put their child in daycare.

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I support government funded preschool (and/or daycare) for children from at risk/low income families or those with special needs.

 

I oppose government funded preschool (and/or daycare) for most children.

 

 

I totally agree. My state has VPK (Voluntary Pre-K) which is funded by the state and available to anyone. ANYONE. I have friends who have their kids in these programs just because it's free, friends who could well afford preschool for their kids.

 

Headstart has been around for years to give low income families access to quality childcare and preschool. I fail to see why we can't beef up a program like this, perhaps expanding the income levels to include more families, instead of just opening the door to free preschool for all, even those who can afford it.

 

And that's not even considering what a stellar job the state has done with K-12 education . . . .

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My very short answer, since ds wants help at the piano, is that when the gov't starts getting the programs they have in place now to be effective, then I won't mind considering more gov't programs.

 

The fraud, waste, abuse, and lack of accountability at the government level is appalling and, imo, that they want more tax dollars to waste is almost laughable.

 

Off to practice piano,

Aggie

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Guest Kingsman
I'm for it as long as it is not mandatory. There should be as many choices as possible for families. We are way behind in education, and it's scary that many countries much "poorer" then we have better educational systems. I would rather us spend more money on education instead of things like, larger highways and red-light traffic cameras. Education is the only way for our nation to advance as a whole. In the end, the more uneducated our population, the more we will continue to pay more and more for healthcare, housing, etc. We will also continue to lose jobs and industry overseas. Not until we pay our teachers as much as we pay our football stars/movie stars, will anything really change.

 

Are you suggesting that teachers should be paid millions per year? Or are you suggesting that these movie star/football stars would have been teachers except for the lure of the big money?

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I am strongly against it but some wonderful ladies, whom I want to be "friends" with, already mentioned some great reasons.

 

Of course, I am also against government funded and controlled schools. I'm also realistic and I know a good majority of our family rearing practices, aspects of our economy, and the mental fabric of the whole nation is wrapped up in it at this point. I'm not trying to tear those down and I understand this is the society I live in now, but I certainly will fight to stop one more program from showing up on the government hand-out map of the world.

 

Lest you think I'm against charity for single mothers and others with hard times, I'm not. Someone said here earlier that when you have to get help from individuals, you are held accountable. You must look them in the eye and you better be one who truly needs it, not just looking for a free hand-out. It also gives the opportunity for a community to do things that are good instead of inspiring bitterness through forced taxes breaking our economy. It also causes those who do have families who can help, to get that help instead and keep those families together.

 

I know a mother with an older child with some delays. Her second child was given extra attention because it could run in the family. He was totally normal but didn't quite have that "50 words by two" thing going. She used that to get him "free" preschool and did so with pride.

 

Unfortunately, this is where the cycle has brought us. This person had more than enough money to not only pay for preschool, but she likely could provide some charity for those who have a true need on the side. This is perhaps a result of the very moral fabric I see falling away when offered something free she could tend to herself if she really had to, or not even bother with preschool. It causes a nasty cycle because when she doesn't provide and takes instead (it's "free" after all), it increases the need for more government intervention.

 

The gravy train will come to a halt eventually and the more we look for ways to simply take care of people instead of turning the Titanic around before it sinks, the worse off we'll be. What happens to the single mothers when the economy fails, and there is nothing around them but a mentality of entitlement by those who don't need it? No people who work from the heart, just government paid employees whose jobs are now being cut back. If it doesn't happen in this generation, it will happen eventually. This is a never-ending cycle and doing the pragmatic, whatever seems nice at the moment, will cause far more destruction in the long run. Frannie Mae and Freddie Mac come to mind...

Edited by CLHCO
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Are you suggesting that teachers should be paid millions per year? Or are you suggesting that these movie star/football stars would have been teachers except for the lure of the big money?

 

Well, which do you value more, education or entertainment? Where do you think the money comes from to pay sports and entertainment figures?

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What confuses me is the fact that daycares do "preschool" with 3 and 4 year olds. If kids in daycare are already receiving "preschool", why do we need a government preschool?

 

Poor kids already have Headstart. Most kids attend daycare. Really, all the government would be doing is providing free child care.

 

You know parents who work and pay for daycare are going to jump for joy at this proposal. It means less years of paying for daycare.

 

I agree with other posters about parents need to be the ones taking care of their "preschoolers".

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My very short answer, since ds wants help at the piano, is that when the gov't starts getting the programs they have in place now to be effective, then I won't mind considering more gov't programs.

 

The fraud, waste, abuse, and lack of accountability at the government level is appalling and, imo, that they want more tax dollars to waste is almost laughable.

 

Off to practice piano,

Aggie

 

You nailed it in so very few words! :iagree:

 

Virtual rep points for you!

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I agree with the posters who said young children should be with a family member (mommy, daddy, grandma) if at all possible. Those who cannot are generally in daycare where THEY ALREADY LEARN PRESCHOOL SKILLS.

 

Accreditation=huge pain in the behind for educators. My aunt is a teacher educator in a small Christian college. They spend beau coup hours every few years making sure they can remain accredited. Their students often have to travel two hours to teach in the inner city so that their experience is "diverse" enough to maintain accreditation. This *Christian* college is also supposed to be indoctrinating them in gay-rights sensitivity (which is against the religious beliefs of many students and professors) to maintain accreditation. It is a bunch of politically correct prescriptive requirements which have very little to do with how well prepared these educators will be to work in a classroom.

 

IMHO America runs into a problem when the government tries to enforce politically correct secular beliefs as part of a REQUIRED part of education. Freedom of religion would soon become a farce.

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Well I'm opposed to early childhood ed programs for several reasons:

 

#1 I don't think preschoolers and younger need it. I think they need to go play in the sunshine and mud and eat cookies and milk and fall asleep under a tree.

 

#2 The vast majority of such programs are just glorified daycare programs. I'm don't support daycare programs either. I would rather support a mother staying home and sharing cookie and milk under previously mentioned tree.

 

#3 The vast majority fo the programs include a lot of social enginneering programs. Lots of books about how having 2 mommies is okay and religions are equal and blabblahblah pc mumbo-jumbo. ABCs and 123s are only a small part of most of the curriculums.

 

#4 By the 4th grade, studies have shown all the kids have leveled out, you can't tell which ones went to preschool and which ones didn't. There's also some evidence that isn't discussed much that some kids being pushed so young are actually hurt academicly by the experience.

 

#5 I think preschoolers, and absolutely younger ones, should be cared for the majority of the day by a loving relative, preferably mom and/or dad. NOT by a state provider. The idea of my 2 or 4 yr old spending 4 - 8 hours at a facility with people who altho they might genuinely care, simply cannot love them as I do, literally makes me want to cry. I feel nothing but sorrow for families that have no choice because the gov't thinks it better to fund a stranger taking care of their kid than to give equal funding to a mother so she can stay home and do it herself.

 

ETA: #6 COST woudl be another for me. I think there are better uses for gov't funds. Esp right now.

:iagree:Totally with everything Martha said....can't realy add much to it...

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It would be nice to live in a world where all families could afford to have a parent stay home with a young child. Many Western democracies have much more generous parental leave policies than we do. But, as long as we have parents who must work, high quality day care where the child is read to, and all the other things, and is in a protected environment is better than cobbling together a bunch of neglectful relatives or undependable neighbors who don't interact with the kid from day to day, and all the other horrors we read about every day in the big city.

 

It is a privilege to be able to stay home with our children, but not one everyone can manage. As long as early ed remains optional, I'm all for it.

Danielle

 

:iagree:

 

I don't want to read one more news article about a child who died in substandard care because the parent (usually a mom, usually single) could not afford quality care and could not miss work.

 

I'm going to have to support something with my tax dollars anyway, let me support families and children instead of millionaire financiers.

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I absolutely do not support gov't run preschools. I would prefer if the government didn't run schools at all and hope that as a society we can take steps toward allowing/encouraging more private, charter, magnet, etc. schools, as well as deregulating homeschooling as much as possible. I feel that bringing competition and choice into education will result in a higher-quality education, and I think getting the private sector more involved will take the burden off of taxpayers, as well as preparing kids for a lifetime of working.

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Working parents are just as much parents as anyone else. It is statements like this that are the source of a lot of young moms having unwarranted stress when it comes to making the decision to work or stay at home. The decision to stay at home is not the right one for every family.

 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with working and wanting to have nice things. There is also absolutely nothing wrong with choosing to be a single parent, whether you make that choice at conception or because you are choosing to move on from a partner who does not enhance your life.

 

I chose to give up my career when I had my daughter. I thought I was just giving it up for a couple of years, but fate dictated otherwise. I certainly do not expect every other women to make the same choices I have. *MY* daughter is better off because of *my* choices, but for some families the other choice is BETTER.

 

I am very disappointed that in 2008 the "Mommy Wars" are still going on. We should have moved past this long ago. THAT, IMO is a failure on the part of our educational system.

 

i don't mind parents having the option to make those choices. But i DO mind that the rest of us are called to fund it involuntarily --no matter which choice they make. There's obviously more to this line of thinking than that, but I'll stop there for now ;)

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What about single mothers? I believe the latest data shows that there are at least 10 million of them in the US (I personally believe the number is much, much higher than that).

 

They don't have the luxury of being a stay-at-home mom.

 

They don't get to have a choice.

 

And 55% of moms are working moms. Not out funding the yacht or the vacation home -- working to put food on the table.

 

 

well, some certainly DO make the choice to stay home and do a work from home job. There have always been one or two WAH-single moms in almost every homeschool group I've been in. They had to rethink what career they needed to pursue to make it happen, but they DO have a CHOICE. It might not be the choice they WANTED, and it might not have been an EASY choice, but the choice is there nonetheless.

 

It wasn't luxury, it was a CHOICE.

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...when the gov't starts getting the programs they have in place now to be effective, then I won't mind considering more gov't programs.

 

The fraud, waste, abuse, and lack of accountability at the government level is appalling and, imo, that they want more tax dollars to waste is almost laughable.

 

:iagree:

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I have not read all the replies yet so bear with me. BEing in Canada I am not sure what the accreditation for the schools is like, but I do remember the concern held by early childhood workers (preschool teachers, daycare workers etc) when the accredation process was brought in for daycares and preschools. NOw though it is a great thing. TO receive accrediation and therefore more money for staff these facilities have to provide standards of care/education that exceed the current minimum standards that are in place to to remain open. I think to have this process and have those places offer the absolute best level of care/education to the children is a wondeful thing. NOt everyone has the desire or ability to remain home fulltime and provide great care/education to their children. TO have accrediation in place ensures that those children are going to get the best available, preparing them for public school in the future.

 

To become accrediated here, the programs need to do things such as having a mulitcultural approach, program planning occuring for each age group from infants up (many daycares do not program plan for infants and toddlers which leads to a lot of board and fussy babies and toddlers rather than ones that are kept stimulated and learning constantly), etc. By having the programs become accrediated, this helps parents know that this daycare/preschool does more than just "babysit" the kids, they are enriching their lives, through activities, the toys/centers offered, outdoor activities, arts/crafts, etc.

 

When a program becomes accrediated out here, the gov't gives a grant for each employee with higher levels of education (meaning for level 2 (1 year of college early childhood studies) or level 3(college diploma in early childhood studies-2 yr program)) to help the center retain higher qualified staff, which in turn results in better care/education for the children in the program.

 

Also out here preschool is not through the public schools, it is run through the same gov't office as daycare centers, so parents can receive subsidies to send their children, plus we all get $100 per month for each child under 6 to help also pay for preschool programs, so parents can send their children virtually for free to an accrediated program and know their child is getting the best quality of care/education now and the preparation for their future in public school. Right now there is even dayhomes that are registered through an agency (as opposed to private care) that can also be accrediated so it is not limited only to institutional care of chidren.

 

I think if the states incorporated something like that, where parents can get subsidies, every family regardless of income gets $100/mon per child under 6 to off set costs (my kids don't go to preschool but I still get that money which is good for having that boost to buy what I want for the kids), the accrediation allowing the staff to be paid more so teh turn over is very low and quality staff are retained I think the accrediation process of these programs would be seen in a very positive light. I do not think preschool should be mandantory for all children. In my province even Kindy is not mandantory, but I do think that accrediation and funding need to be there to provide the highest level for the children who do attend those programs.

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This is patently false.

Education has been happening LONG before anyone ever funded it.

 

Yes, but usually only for those with the means. Very few self taught have risen out of the teaming masses. Either a society values education or it does not. This is one area I have issues and struggle with myself (as a libertarian).

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But I don't really expect anyone to support my decisions financially, and I really don't want to support anyone else's. I'm not asking for a subsidy for being a SAHM, and I don't want to provide free day care for those who choose to work.

 

I understand that for some people, working isn't entirely a choice. I have no problem supporting a program like Head Start that funds preschool/daycare for at risk, low income children. But I will not support a program that provides tax dollars to all parents who choose to put their child in daycare.

 

That was very well-stated. If there were still a rep. system, I would be repping you!

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I think if the states incorporated something like that, where parents can get subsidies, every family regardless of income gets $100/mon per child under 6 to off set costs (my kids don't go to preschool but I still get that money which is good for having that boost to buy what I want for the kids

 

That's it! I am moving to Canada!! I would get $400 a month!

 

:auto:

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I'll start with a question; why do toddler aged children need "early education"? As far as I can tell most pre-school programs are used as babysitting services. I say this as someone who sent both of my children to preschool at the age of 3. My kids had a good time, I got a needed break, I paid for it myself. I have no problem with communites deciding collectively to offer pre-school programs at their public schools. More power to them. I have a real problem when they want federal or state tax dollars to fund these programs. At what point are parents responsible for educating and caring for their own offspring? I think public education used to be a very good thing. It offered a reasonable amount of useful education at a reasonable price. At some point the goals and the motives of all involved become so self involved and muddled that now what we offer is a mess of mediocrity at an outrageous price in a almost soulless environment.

 

Our public schools as institutions just don't work for many, many of our kids. Only the schools in the affluent areas with college educated and/or involved parents are doing a good job.

 

WHY, Why should we offer up more public funding, on a state or federal level, to expand the services provided by an incompetent institution? Why would we expand the responsibilites of pss that are unable to meet their current responsibilites.

 

I'll just add that I don't have a problem with at risk kids having access to Head Start as long as it's means tested (offered to those most in need).

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Guest Kingsman

People that want entertainment pay for entertainment. I pay for the education of my children. Our tax dollars pay for the education of the children in ps. Our tax money does not pay football stars or movie stars salaries. I don't get your point. If you think that our tax dollars should be used to pay school teachers millions of dollars, where do you expect the money to come from?

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Yes, but usually only for those with the means. Very few self taught have risen out of the teaming masses. Either a society values education or it does not. This is one area I have issues and struggle with myself (as a libertarian).

 

 

what society values is a different argument from what is possible.

 

that many people choose to not avail themselves of the free non-gvt funded opportunities for education doesn't mean that

If you want folks to be educated, then you have to fund education. Period.

 

It does mean that if you want folks to be educated a certain way then yeah, you fund it the way our gvt does --according to certain standards. That may or may not lead to people actually being educated.

 

back to what people will and will not CHOOSE vs what people can and can't DO. ;)

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I support them wholeheartedly. If you don't want to send your children, then don't. If you can afford to send your kids to an expensive preschool / Montessori school / Waldorf school, then go for it. If you want to keep your children home during the preschool years, then go for that, too!

 

It's all about choice.

 

Low income families ... working families ... they don't have a choice. At least one that isn't going to cost them a fortune.

 

If you want folks to be educated, then you have to fund education. Period. And I'd rather see a 2 year old in preschool than parked in front of the TV eating Cheetos for 7 hours a day.

 

As I stated in the other post, my youngest daughter has autism. She was able to attend a special education preschool due to a government-funded grant (we live in a rural area and our school system couldn't afford to do it otherwise).

 

My daughter started the program at 3 years of age, unable to put 2 words together - literally. She's now speaking in full, grammatically correct, sentences.

 

She receives free speech and occupational therapy sessions twice a week through the public school system, even though she's homeschooled, because she's still "on the books" because of being in that grant program. Our health insurance wouldn't pay for therapy, and to pay for our ourselves through private therapists would cost us $125 a week - at least.

 

As long as individuals are allowed to say, "Thanks, but no thanks. I'm going to put my child in a homeschool / private school / parochial school setting," and that's a-okay with the government, then I'm all for funding any education programs.

 

 

I miss being able to rep, it took up a lot less space than just posting to say "I agree 100%!"

 

But I do agree, and you said it much more coherently than I would have managed.

 

Out of the many things my tax money goes towards, so much of which I completely disagree with, education is never on my list of don'ts.

Michelle T

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We have more single/divorced mothers than any other generation? Blame the 60's and the onset of daycare..more of the same is not going to help.

 

Tara

 

I don't get your point. Are you saying that women who are in abusive relationships should stay married? Are you saying women whose husbands have died should lose custody of their children so they can go live in a two parent household?

 

Of course there are kids who are born out of wedlock, but to group all single parent households as bad because of some feminist movement in the 60's is extremely shortsided. Also...most conservatives would be against that single mother staying home if it meant collecting welfare or other govt. handouts, yet that same mother who puts their kids in daycare so they can work to provide for their family is a bad mother??? I'm not following the logic here...:confused:

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I don't get your point. Are you saying that women who are in abusive relationships should stay married? Are you saying women whose husbands have died should lose custody of their children so they can go live in a two parent household?

 

Of course there are kids who are born out of wedlock, but to group all single parent households as bad because of some feminist movement in the 60's is extremely shortsided. Also...most conservatives would be against that single mother staying home if it meant collecting welfare or other govt. handouts, yet that same mother who puts their kids in daycare so they can work to provide for their family is a bad mother??? I'm not following the logic here...:confused:

 

 

well, i think you answered your own question --

 

because of some feminist movement in the 60's.

 

divorce rates --and the reasons given -- have been appalling since then.

 

yes, we can recognize extreme situations, and yes, we can recognize that MOST single parent homes are NOT because of abusive relationships.

 

 

and as she mentioned in that same post:

 

we've got to put the pieces back together, promote more programs for marriages...encourage parenting classes...strengthen the family..encourage and promote companies to offer flex jobs for single mothers..give tax breaks for those families living on one income, tax the heck out of luxury items..cars over 50k..telelvisions over 30 inches...let the churches and non-profit agencies fill the needs for those in NEED....that's how OUR government was founded and designed....

 

 

just because conservatives are against people collecting GVT welfare doesn't mean those families shouldn't be given ANY welfare --we just differ on the SOURCE of that welfare.

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I have not read all the posts yet, so I apologize if I repeat something already said. I have a degree in Early Childhood Education. Until I had children, I thought preschool was a great thing. I was taught in college that children would be so much better off if we "experts" took care of them. Then, I became a mother. I had friends with no background in education become mothers. We all read to our children, played with them, went to the park, walked in the woods. My oldest went to preschool at 4 because I thought the "socialization" would be good for her. My younger daughter has never been to school of any kind and is well "socialized" and educated. I strongly believe the answer to early childhood education lies in educating the parents. Children of parents who are well educated are read to more often, have more opportunities and very often come from strong extended families. (I know there are lots of exceptions here) I would rather see the government support my choice to stay home and encourage families to support on another, and employers allow greater flexiblility in work schedules so that one parent can be with the children. We require childbirth education classes and then leave parents alone afterwards. I did not need or want government help in my parenting, but perhaps offering help through communities and doctors, not just to poor families, would help. Providing government run preschools only makes more parents think they don't know what is best for their child. Parents give up so much when their children go to school at 6, thinking they don't know enough, how can we start that even younger? Women used to learn from their mothers, sisters and neighbors and children got along quite niceley. For those who don't have that support, much could be offered without taking the child out of the home. I keep wondering why politicians continually talk about the need for supporting American families, yet completely undermine all that the family is. Sorry for the lengthy post. I have thought so much about this-it all seems so obvious to me. I can't imagine going to a college reunion and talking to everyone still so active in the field!

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