“I would rather a boy learnt in the roughest school the courage to hit a politician, or gained in the hardest school the learning to refute him – rather than that he should gain in the most enlightened school the cunning to copy him.” – G.K. Chesterton
Wouldn't that be something? Schools are created by people who have something to offer to younger, or less knowlegeable people. The best schools offer something of value that honors Truth, Nature and our Creator.
Schools are formed by people who share common values and skills that converge to bring people from one place in their lives to another, be it one of the 1st Tier Elite Prep Schools that shape future Secretaries of State and Members of Secret Societies, a co-educational Chicago Public School in Auburn Gresham, Roseland, Englewood, or Garfield Park that warehouse 9-12 year so that one out of score students score above a 20 on ACT exams and less than half graduate, or a Catholic all-Male college prep high school where 90% of African-American students who begin their schooling in its halls graduate and every graduate is welcomed to four-year college or university.
Our American public schools have become places that glare Halogen lighting on politicians. Elected officials comprise the Board of Directors to Public Schools. Elected politicians are the Carnegie Endowments of the 50 States without whom nothing remains done.
My assertions are arguable with regard to public schooling, but the fact that everything about public schools links directly to some career political grifter.
Marcus Aurelius endowed the first school at Athens in because he believed that a good person should lead a life honed by reason. Aurelius was a Stoic by temperament and outlook; yet, he created a School for each of the Dominant Philosophies Aristotelian, Platonic, Stoic and Epicurean. He was no Ted Turner, or Bill Gates.
By the way, Emperor Marcus Aurelius persecuted Christians as brutally as Bill Maher of HBO would love to do.
Schools operated on endowments so that scholars ( people who showed up at school to teach or learn) develop themselves through immersion in the many disciplines that merged to a core belief, or philosophy.
When Romans allowed barbarians to protect them from barbarians, schools vanished.
From the 5th Century until John Dewey, schools were centered on God. Paris, Oxford, Cambridge, Wittenburg and Escorial were Royally endowed. John Scotus Erigena, Boethius, Augustine, Cassidorius, Aquinas, William of Occam, Roger Bacon, Anselm, Ignatius, Gonzaga Descrates, and Gregor Mendel managed to have great impact on human justice, human development and the humanities in spite of the fact that they were pious Christians. Catholic schools remain, or should remain, in this tradition.
Public schools came about when Napoleon defeated the Prussians at Jena in 1806.
I could almost hear Mike Klonsky and Jesse Sharkey's noggins explode. No, that was not a bomb planted by UICC Department of Education retiree, terrorist Emeritus and Obama sponsor Bill Ayers. That was the Battle that created a Godless school - Public Education.
The result has been Mugs in the New and a Chicago Homicide Rate that spikes each weekend - come rain or shine.
On my side of street, dominated by a four story fortress of Virtue designed by Joseph McCarthy who was Daniel Burnham's Catholic-go-to-guy when spending Cardinal Mundelein's money, a Catholic high school serves the exact same clientele as Simeon, Crane, and the former Calumet high schools - young men of African American heritage and mostly ( 80%) CPS elementary graduates.
All young men ( teenage Man Childs) are willful, proud, loud, playful, fidgety, distracted, horny as goats and in need of guidance, instruction and an occasional kind word. Inner city black kids educated according to the secular Hegelian John Dewey constructs are exponentially more so.
Public school teachers told them "We don't do that!" Catholic school teachers can tell, Pat Hickey to quit farting, explain is tardiness in 250 words double spaced and shape up or he will die on the gallows, IN THUNDER because Christ, His Mother, the Holy Spirit and God of Abraham expect more of him.
A Public school teacher says, ' We don't do that." A Catholic school teacher explains why one's actions have consequences well beyond his immediate impulse to folly.
Here is a better explanation. Yesterday, I was delighted to shake hands, fist bump and hug a seventeen year old kid who was expelled two years ago. This young gent has had a horrific life. He was shuttled from one foster care home to another from the time he was six years old until he turned fourteen for a total of seven placements. A relative took him in and sent him to Leo High School as a freshman. Troubles ensued - tardy, absent, disrespectful & etc. The kid is smart, tough as algebra and has an inner sweetness that belies his troubled young life. He is among the brawny stalwarts hugging Francis Cardinal George in 2011 in the photo that accompanies this prose. In fact, Cardinal George counseled the young man on the quiet.
For two years, this talented and handsome young guy attended a neighboring public school and went "All Street." He caught a beef - a serious beef. He was arrested and sent to Juvey and eventually lawyered his way out of the Juvenile Detention Center and is in the expungement process. More so, this young man remembered why he was expelled from Leo High School and added up the consequences trailing his will to impulse in fall of 2011.
He is working community service hours. He was delighted that I still have his size twelve Stacy Adams black dress shoes on my office book shelf. He left them with me upon expusion. I asked him if he'd like to put the broggans back on and finish out at Leo. He said, " If you'll have me back."
Hell, yes! Arne Duncan and Karen Lewis have had for too long. This is a young man who might not punch a politcal clown in the nose, but he will dispute the secular nonsense pretending to schooling.
Young people is no stroll through Winnetka. . . .well, it is if you go to New Trier.
N.B. By the way, two of the 100 Chicago Tribune Mugs in the News were known to my young friend.