I was treated once again by a presentation from the Early Childhood Coalition at the Helena School Board meeting the other night. These people are deceitful and I'm assuming they know it. If they look at resesearch about strictly Head Start children they find, in their own research, that at most, children from Head Start do not do better than their peers from similar families by third grade,and at worst, by kindergarten!! Yet, the Early Chldhood Coalition continue with their montra that preschool keeps kids out of prison and graduates them from high school. They are not just measuring Head Start.
What the Early Childhood Coalition is really measuring is families,because what they are measuring is all children who go to preschool. Children who go to preschool have, by and large, educated involved parents who want the best for their children. Naturally, more of these chldren graduate from high school and do not become criminals.
When I brought my children home from the hospital I was terrified. I thought," I could make this child a drug addict or a college graduate, it's on me!" I have changed my thoughts on many things over the years, but I have not changed my opinion on what makes a healthy child. My husband and I together were very diligent and consistent in our parenting, our children were always first, they were always the center of our world. We were not perfect and our children are not perfect, but they did not do drugs and they have advanced degrees. They are able to function as healthy adults in this world.
School can not replace families. When kindergarten becomes all day, many children lose that wonderful afternoon at home. In many families parents do work, but not in all. When preschool offers free breakfast that time that children with working parents used to spend with family preparing and eating breakfast, even if it is a bowl of cereal, is gone from their day. When schools offer free lunch the pride and loyalty that comes from knowing your parents provided that lunch is gone. When schools offer daycare the parents no longer take their afternoon break to pick their child up from school and get them to daycare. That time in the car sharing what they did today or what prioblem they might have is gone from them.
Many schools now have healthcare centers. When the school takes over healthcare parents no longer take time off of work to take their children to the doctor. That time in the car, in the waiting room, in the doctors office, is stolen from that child.
The Early Childhood Coalition and all of their do gooder liberal friends, may mean well along with their desire to use government to grow their businesses, but what they are doing is really stealing from the child those things that REALLY will make them healthy, their family.
There are many kinds of families, but when you offer things for free and without hassle, many parents will accept, just because it is there. Government has shown over and over again that they can not and do not make healthy people. You have only to go to any ghetto that is hgihly subsidized by the government to see what government programs create. Government destroys. In addition, too much government will bring all of us down because WE CAN NOT PAY FOR IT AND WE RISK LOSING OUR ECONOMY.
Unfortunately, this country will always have unhealthy families. Social services and family courts will place children out of homes that do not take csre of them. These are criminally neglectful and abusive families. The average family, though not perfect, will do best to raise their own children.
Jobs and a free America, I believe, provides the best chance for kids to get the only thing that really makes them healthy individuals that stay out of trouble and graduate from high school, THEIR FAMILY.