Moving my son to a Secular School

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Faerie (September 20, 2013, 19:33:17 PM):
I finally got annoyed enough with my son's religious based discipline schooling to take a week out of work to find an alternative for his last two years at school. So I trudge through various "private" schools, "prep" schools, "good" local schools (and some not so local), and rejecting them one by one (some on sight). I've had meetings with headmasters, head mistresses, principals and just plain "Heads", none of them impressed me in the least and all of them tried to convince me of the benefits of strong discipline, hard lines taken on appearances, the importance of being part of the crowd (proudly showing me clips of young men in similar uniforms shouting "HOO-HAAA!!" in unison, very impressive, the way they can control boys). I was simultaneously horrified and frustrated that I wasnt going to find anything suitable when I came across and old local newspaper and was mindlessly paging through it and noticed a small little tucked away ad for an independent school... a SECULAR independent school.

I kept the lad out of school the next morning and the S/O joined us to visit this anomaly unannounced. What a breath of fresh air... Tucked away in a suburb this little school spans four converted houses and upon our arrival two of the grades were being conducted outside in the sunshine (the Grade 8 class were wearing galoshes and were trudging around in murky water with bottles). We were ushered into the office of Mr Peter who turned out to be the principal of the school.

My lad is quiet and introverted, but this man got him chatty within 2 minutes flat and the boy was telling him exactly why he disliked his current school (stuff he didnt even bother to tell me). He was asked whether he understood what "secular" meant, and the lad nodded and responded that "I'm either an evolutionist or an atheist, I'm still figuring it out as I'm going along". This was the first school we visited where I was addressed after my son was given the opportunity to speak for himself. I liked that.

Not a big school, 135 kids in total, registered with the correct authorities etc etc etc, got all the right subjects and an list of impressively qualified teachers. The lad will start in January. What is really interesting though, is how my sn is already reacting to the coming change. He's dropped his "moody" demeanour and has once again integrated himself with the rest of the family, this transpired just before his exams started and we received his mark sheet tday - his marks increased on average 20% from last term. He is excited and looking forward to the change and he's not an excitable child.

so they are out there, the secular schools, but we will have to search for them..

brianvds (September 21, 2013, 05:25:21 AM):
I've had meetings with headmasters, head mistresses, principals and just plain "Heads", none of them impressed me in the least and all of them tried to convince me of the benefits of strong discipline, hard lines taken on appearances, the importance of being part of the crowd (proudly showing me clips of young men in similar uniforms shouting "HOO-HAAA!!" in unison, very impressive, the way they can control boys). I was simultaneously horrified and frustrated that I wasnt going to find anything suitable when I came across and old local newspaper and was mindlessly paging through it and noticed a small little tucked away ad for an independent school... a SECULAR independent school.

The few rational, reasonable people on the planet always have problems finding good schools. The problem is that the vast majority of children nowadays are not properly socialized, and if you don't have absolutely draconian discipline at a school, you very soon go from bad discipline to bad marks to delinquency to school shootings. This is most unfortunate for the few kids who don't need any of that.

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Not a big school, 135 kids in total, registered with the correct authorities etc etc etc, got all the right subjects and an list of impressively qualified teachers.

Sounds like the kind of school I should try to get a job at. :-)
Not that I would complain too much about my current employment, but I do think I could do even better. My problem: I am not formally qualified in education. I also flatly refuse to become "qualified," because the postgrad education diploma is a completely contentless pseudo-qualification, and just as some countries have a policy of not negotiating with terrorists, so I have a personal policy of never negotiating with or compromising with postmodernists. :-)

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so they are out there, the secular schools, but we will have to search for them..

Considering what the government is doing to education in this country, it is high time for concerned parents to found more such schools...
Tweefo (September 21, 2013, 06:50:50 AM):
Considering what the government is doing to education in this country, it is high time for concerned parents to found more such schools...

I am more concerned about what the government allows to happen at schools. I was at a government school this week where all classes were stopped for an hour (9 to 10 am) for hymn singing. Apparently this happens once a week.
Jacques (September 21, 2013, 07:58:47 AM):
so they are out there, the secular schools, but we will have to search for them..

Great to hear. Mind sharing the name/location of this school?
brianvds (September 21, 2013, 08:21:29 AM):
Considering what the government is doing to education in this country, it is high time for concerned parents to found more such schools...

I am more concerned about what the government allows to happen at schools. I was at a government school this week where all classes were stopped for an hour (9 to 10 am) for hymn singing. Apparently this happens once a week.

Yes, while our constitution is generally a good one, I think they made a very, very biog mistake when they did not follow the American model of strictly separating church and state.

Anyway, don't get me started on education in this country. It is such a disaster zone I would go on about it for pages and pages. :-)

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