It’s time we recognize the three strikes which have always existed against having the federal Dept. of Education and to push for its elimination.
“Roger Pilon, constitutional scholar has said: ‘From beginning to end the [Constitution] never mentioned the word ‘education.’”1
“Why then was the Department of Education created? President Jimmy Carter, during whose watch the new department came into being, had promised the department to the National Education Association. Contemporary editorials in both the New York Times and the Washington Post acknowledged that the creation of the department was mainly in response to pressure from the NEA. According to Rep. Benjamin Rosenthal (DN.Y.), Congress went along with the plan out of ‘not wanting to embarrass the president.’ Also, many members of Congress had made promises to educators in their home districts to support the new department.”2
This concept states that decisions should always be made at the lowest possible level, as described by:
“Excessive intervention by the state can threaten personal freedom and initiative. The teaching of the Church has elaborated the principle of subsidiarity, according to which ‘a community of a higher order should not interfere in the internal life of a community of a lower order, depriving the latter of its functions, but rather should support it in case of need and help to co-ordinate its activity with the activities of the rest of society, always with a view to the common good.”3
(To clarify the often misrepresented “common good”:
“The common good consists of three essential elements: respect for and promotion of the fundamental rights of the person; prosperity, or the development of the spiritual and temporal goods of society; the peace and security of the group and of its members.”4)
Parents’ Rights with Regard to Educating Their Children
“Parents are the principal and first educators of their children… ‘The role of parents in education is of such importance that it is almost impossible to provide an adequate substitute.’… Parents should teach their children to subordinate the ‘material and instinctual dimensions to interior and spiritual ones.’… The state may not legitimately usurp the initiative of the spouses, who have the primary responsibility for the procreation and education of their children.”5
Bishop Fulton J. Sheen: “It is a great fallacy for parents to believe that the education of their children depends on the school. The school is not the primary educator, but the secondary; its authority to teach the children is delegated by the parents, the right inherent in the father and the mother. Nor is the school ever a substitute for the parents.”6
Conclusion: This is no justification for a federal department of education. Just because this mistake is almost forty years old is not a reason for its continuation. Decisions involving education must be kept at the state and local level so that parents’ can keep a close watch of developments as is their prerogative. When this occurs, we don’t have to deal with intrusions like Common Core – which was not developed by the states as it claims to have been. (See the 5-part series on Common Core published by The Ohio Conservative Review in March 2015.)
Nor will school districts which are located in areas holding true to timeless values and proven science have to defend themselves against: “The U.S. Department of Education will tell school districts Friday that federal law requires them to allow students to use restrooms and locker rooms ‘consistent with their gender identity.’”7
These edicts are made despite: “Dr. Paul R. McHugh, the former psychiatrist-in-chief for Johns Hopkins Hospital and its current Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry, said that transgenderism is a ‘mental disorder’ that merits treatment, that sex change is ‘biologically impossible,’ and that people who promote sexual reassignment surgery are collaborating with and promoting a mental disorder… he explained that transgender surgery is not the solution for people who suffer a “disorder of ‘assumption’” – the notion that their maleness or femaleness is different than what nature assigned to them biologically… Dr. McHugh further noted studies from Vanderbilt University and London’s Portman Clinic of children who had expressed transgender feelings but for whom, over time, 70%-80% “spontaneously lost those feelings.”8
The net result is: education must be kept at the state and local levels to allow decision-making by those closest to its effects, local parents and educators. Federal control takes away accountability and has shown itself to be prone to enforcing social engineering without opposition.
1 – “Common Core: Slingshot to Progress or Spider Web? Part 5 of 5 [What slingshot? More spiders here than at the old Munsters’ house],” by Tony Rubio, http://ohioconservativereview.com/2015/03/21/common-core-slingshot-to-progress-or-spider-web-part-5-of-5-what-slingshot-more-spiders-here-than-at-the-old-munsters-house/, 3/21/2015.
2 – ”Cato Handbook for Congress, Policy Recommendations for the 108th Congress,” by the Cato Institute, http://object.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/serials/files/cato-handbook-policymakers/2003/9/hb108-28.pdf
3 – Part of paragraph 1883 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.
4 – Paragraph 1925, Ibid.
5 – Excerpts from paragraphs 1653, 2221, 2223 and 2372, Ibid.
6 – The Quotable Fulton Sheen,” edited by George J. Marlin, Richard P. Rabatin and John L. Swan, Doubleday, New York, 1989. This particular quote was taken from “Thoughts for Daily Living, Garden City, New York: Garden City, 1955.
7 – “Schools must allow transgender bathrooms, Department of Education says,” by Gregory Korte, http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2016/05/12/feds-schools-transgender-bathrooms-letter-title-ix/84311104/, 5/13/2016.
8 – “Johns Hopkins Psychiatrist: Transgender is ‘Mental Disorder;’ Sex Change ‘Biologically Impossible’,” by Michael W. Chapman, http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/michael-w-chapman/johns-hopkins-psychiatrist-transgender-mental-disorder-sex-change, 6/2/2015.