Like everything else under the sun, teaching character education in public schools is a controversial issue. Some believe that all schools should implement some sort of character education program, saying that it can help decrease violence, teen pregnancy, substance abuse, etc. They also reason that character education in schools will teach values to children whose parents, for one reason or another, don't.
Then there are others who feel it is not the school's place to teach what is right and wrong. They feel it should be the parent’s sole responsibility to teach their children how to behave and make ethical decisions. Yet, because many children are not being taught basic morals such as the value of life and property, and the value of respect and honesty, character is being set aside and in it's place we see anger, jealousy, hatred, and selfishness.
For years, my husband and I have worked in the public school system. It is our personal feeling we should teach character education in schools. Where is the character in intentionally urinating on the bathroom floor, rubbing soap on mirrors, stealing toys out of the treat box, taking markers from the teacher's desk and purposely making black marks on the waxed floors? These are just a few of the things my husband and I have witnessed this past school year. (And I am not even beginning to touch the lack of character we, as a society, are subjected to outside of our school system.)
Parents and educators should be working together toward a functioning society of self-controlled, respectful individuals, who not only think before they act, but consider the consequences of their actions. Doing so will benefit everyone.
Are there really any cons to teaching character education? What are your thoughts?