Comments about ‘Utah lawmaker calls for end of compulsory education’

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Published: Tuesday, July 16 2013 10:45 a.m. MDT

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Sophie 62
spring city, UT

Children are not qualified to be the deciders of whether they should stay in school and Mr Osmond isn't either, apparently.
Children often don't want to eat their vegetables or brush their teeth, go to bed at a reasonable hour, clean their rooms or other tasks.
Do we say - "Sure, stay up all night playing video games, sleep till 2 in the afternoon, eat junk, and don't worry about school?"
Unfortunately, some parents do exactly that, but is it in the best interest of the kids? Of course it isn't.
And neither is doing away with compulsory education. It's foolish, short-sighted, silly.

Phoenix, AZ

It seems the GOP wants to take the nation back to the good old days of the Stone Age with non compulsory education in Utah and compulsory pregnancy in Texas, what next: the good old times of the robber Barron's . The Tea Party is just to much fun, and it would be funny if it didn't hurt so much.

Beaver Native
Garland, UT

As a former teacher and staunch Republican, I think implementation of this idea would be disastrous and put us in the class of third-world countries. Instead, we need to find ways to get the kids wanting to learn and concentrate on their strengths at an early age.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

Many have addressed the problems with giving those who, by definition lack mature judgement, the ability to decide their long term fate (which will largely be determined by their education).

Here is another point. If education is no longer compulsory, does the state then have an obligation to pay for it? Does it become a choice on both sides (kids decide if they will go and the state decides if they will pay)?

Heidi T.
Farmington, UT

Senator Osmond: I am an educator of thirty eight years and sincerely applaud and support your proposal, "Let’s let them choose it, let’s not force them to do it," he said. I definitely believe a "shift" will take place when parents qualify their children to participate in a free education by showing up at their neighborhood schools and actually signing a request for enrollment. It's called responsibility and really is a simple yet powerful procedure. Parents will actually walk into their children's schools and connect with teachers and administrators. Positive action is good.

Kearns, UT


"we likely spend more money on education, than all countries combined, through out history." Likely? Great argument. We spend more $'s as a whole, but are only slightly above average when it comes to educational spending as % of GDP.

"many of our engineers, chemists, medical people, etc, come from other countries" How many? Why? Possibly because we have more positions to fill in these areas that we have graduates for? We need more emphasis on STEM programs. Back up your statement.

"a third of our college graduates are from other countries" Because, despite its flaws, we still have one of the top university systems in the world. Are our own students being turned away because of this? No- we have record numbers of people attending college and with degrees.

"more than half our people live in poverty" Census Bureau in November 2012 said that 16.3% of people in the United States live in poverty. Not even close to half (perhaps you needed to pay more attention to math in school)

I'm not sure what it says about compulsory education, because your statements were either false, questionable, or had no substance to back them up.

Bob K
porland, OR

OK, we need to let some wingnut tell us about mandatory schooling.

Next, he can tell us about voting, or anything else his Wild West attitude dislikes

Ultra Bob
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Probably nowhere in America is the war on public education more evident than in Utah. It seems that the business community is no longer satisfied to just starve the school budgets and make the careers of teachers difficult, they now are attacking the concept of public education itself.

The business community, including the churches and religion, do not need or even want an educated public. Education makes consumers hard to please and less susceptible to the indoctrination of advertisings. And when business needs educated employees, they are readily available from foreign sources at much less cost than American workers.

Compulsory public education is a primary source of freedom for parents. It not only gives them time to rest from the obligations of children but frees them from the need to be expert in everything in the world.

If Utah can force people to take the full responsibility for education of their children, can Utah also force people to take responsibility to grow their own food and carry their own water.

If a person must spend all his/her time fighting for survival, what good is freedom if you don’t have any time to use it.

luling, LA

I understand his sentiment about parents these days leaving the rearing of their children to the state run school system, however he is misguided. the fault lies not with the school system itself, but with the so called parents who neglect their children.

Provo, UT

As I retired teacher from here in Utah, I fully agree with this man. I would have liked to have had parents, all of them, accountable for the children they choose to bring into this world. Now that would mean that the parents would have a more equal hand in the education of their children. It does not mean the public schools would not be responsible for the educational plans. The schools with parents would share the stewardship of education. Think about it. Who is responsible for your children when it comes right down to it? Parents step up to the plate! Take your Heaven given rights seriously.

Craig Clark
Boulder, CO

The concept of public education itself is anathema to the right wing which sees it as a liberal gadfly in their anti-government strategy for restoring American greatness as they perceive it. But this is a step beyond voucher programs as a Trojan horse approach for what they wish to undo.

Public education has done more than anything else to give the disadvantaged a leg up in a competitive world. I think the general public understands that well enough.

Vaughn J
Kearns, UT

Doing away with compulsory education is not an appropriate answer. The need is to get parents more involved in their children education. How about each parent being required to provide 1 day per year as a classroom aide? A second day should be required where the employer provides time, with pay, to assist in the educational experience.

If a child is below grade level then parent and child should attend an evening class where they work together in improving the students skills, separate from above requirements. The idea is that a teacher that has 25-30 students for 6 hours of instruction per day can not provide sufficient one on one instruction (12-15 minute available per student if this is tried)time. Parents have to provide the additional support, insure that their children perform homework, and return it on time. My wife is a teacher and she spends 2-3 hours per day outside of contract hours preparing and grading assignment for the classroom.

The idea that student performance is directly tied to teachers performance is absurd. It is more of a function of the parents involvement, their encouragement to provide additional time to study.

Copper Catfish
Newburgh, IN

George Washington and Abraham Lincoln seemed to do all right without being forced to go to public school!
As a retired public school teacher, I highly recommend homeschooling.

Cardston, Alberta

My children are very good readers because we would read to them and with them as parents just about every day(including reading scriptures).

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