Ever since Emile Zola uttered the words, “Families I hate you!” the attack on families has continued unabated. Arguments from those who support the family will often be simply pragmatic ones – it is the basic unit of society and has always worked well. However convincing this line of argument may be, ultimately the family can only be adequately defended as a creation ordinance, as something given of God and binding upon us all.
In this article on Christian education published first in DAYSPRING, we trace how ‘voluntary’ private and religious schools were deliberately squeezed out of existence by the radicals of the 19th century and replaced by compulsory state education. We shall continue by looking at some of the men and the ideology that has given us our modern secular education system and show how schools are used deliberately to undermine the Christian faith. This first article will then conclude with a brief outline of a Christian and biblical approach to education.
A biblical consideration of the children of Christian families and the goals of humanistic state eduation.
The foremost concern of most caring parents with children at school will be that their offspring learn to read and write competently, and be proficient in basic arithmetic. Such parents will avoid schools that fail in these areas and will be prepared even to move house to ensure their children will be allotted a place at a school they see as being successful. Recently, there has been much reported in the British press about the extent to which some parents will go in order to secure such a place and, on the other side, the extraordinary measures local authorities will use – including the ‘snooping’ provisions in anti-terrorism legislation -–, often against innocent parties, should they suspect anyone is cheating. Articulate parents demanding the best for their offspring are an ever-present nightmare for many head teachers and local education authorities – and who can blame them for creating a fuss? Parents are naturally surprised and suspicious when they see good schools being closed or amalgamated, grammar schools talked-down and abolished, and a perpetual war being waged against faith schools and the independent sector, sometimes with a threat of eventual closure.