Sunday, June 18, 2006

Teachable moments?

My 14 year old son made an interesting comment the other day. "Mom, do you know what 'huffing' is?" I answered yes, wondering where the conversation was going. "Well, no one (in class) knew what it was until they explained HOW TO DO IT in class. Isn't that funny?"

I didn't think it was funny at all. I think public school drug and alcohol awareness programs and assigned reading with pornographic passages in them have something in common. They inadvertantly end up teaching a certain percentage of kids 'how' - kids who would not have known 'what' before, let alone 'how'.

In an effort to 'prepare' kids for life, I think the schools often end up destroying the innocence that once served to protect them. Board member Mimi Cooper's characterization of the content of the 214 books as useful for creating 'teachable moments' is completely wrongheaded. What are we teaching them - other than giving them idea that this kind of destructive behavior is common and therefore 'normal' and perhaps expected?