Sunday, February 6, 2011

Are There Really Cons to Teaching Character Education in Schools?

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?

6 comments:

bbsmum said...

Very interesting. I completely agree, but alongside chsracter education I'd also teach critical thinking skills. That way we're not only teaching children values but we're teaching them how to evaluate what they're taught. That way we're not teaching blind obedience but also the capacity to decide why rules are worth obeying, who has the authority to make rules, and who benefits. We don't want unthinking obedience from our future citizens, we want people who see the value in cooperation and self regulation.

Oooh, you made me think! And it's only 7.30 in the morning here! Where's my coffee...?

bbsmum said...

"chsracter"? I told you I should have had a coffee :P

carolinaheartstrings said...

I am 100% with you. We have to teach this in our schools. Why? Because for some reason parents have stopped being parents. They have stopped caring about they type of children they are bringing up. They don't teach anything. No manners, no responsiblity, no social consciouss. They let Facebook, the mall, video games and TV parent their children so they can go about their lives and not be bothered. My children were a gift from God that he entrusted me to care for, bring up and show the right moral, ethical way in this world. They are number one in my life and that is as it should be. God bless you and your husband DeeAnn, you have tough jobs.

Collette said...

I couldn't agree more. I hate how we have to be scared of stepping on parents toes, when the parents that would get mad are the parents that aren't teaching it at home. That's just my 2 cents. :)

Happy13 said...

I'm definitely on board with your views. I see no cons to teaching character education as long as the one teaching isn't in need of it as well. It's a great tool for children who don't get the support they need at home and as a reinforcement for those who do. We, unfortunately, live in a society that doesn't value accountability. It'd be great to change that.

Lora said...

As far as I can see there are no cons to teaching character education in school. In fact, it is becoming more and more necessary these days as parents are slacking off and not teaching children the fundamentals of what is right and wrong and taking social responsibility.

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