I have never been a huge proponent of government schools. However, as parents, we have to make decisions based on our situations. Due to various reasons, we sent our kids to public schools. The original plan was to move to homeschool education once they were older and a little more self-sufficient. But something frightening happened this week that I think will change our decision.
In the government’s response to COVID-19, schools have been shut down, including ours. This has created several problems with every student’s progress. We live in southern Idaho and our local school has issued packets and set up an online environment. The learning platform is called Seesaw and allows parents and teachers to interact. Lessons and learning material can be created and uploaded for students to work through.
My wife was sitting in the living room when my oldest daughter, 8, told her that she saw the ‘Illuminati triangle’ in her homework. My wife initially brushed it off, but then one of my other daughters said she saw it as well . Curious, my wife walked over to the computer and sure enough, there was the ‘all-seeing eye’. The contrast was turned down on the image, but it was clear that my oldest daughter wasn’t just seeing things.
My wife took some pictures and turned up the contrast. Once the contrast was turned up, there was no doubt. She began to post online about the homework. The teacher was contacted and promptly deleted the assignment. When she was pressed on the issue, the teacher replied that the lesson was developed by another teacher and was picked by her as a resource. The teacher proceeded to then tell me that teachers have to create their own lessons.
This was unclear, and while the teacher stated she removed the lesson and apologized, there has been no effort to question the administrator who uploaded the lesson plan or review the rest of the work she has uploaded.
This has made me very uncomfortable. I am happy that we have worked with our kids outside of the classroom to help their awareness. I know that at this point we are going to take another route with education. Idaho has the most lenient laws in the country on homeschooling, so it should’t be a difficult transition.
My advice to parents whose children are in the public school system is to take the extra time to work with your kids outside of school. Even though we are schooling at home during this pandemic, we must still be vigilant in being fully aware of what our children are being taught in public school curriculum.
I am still in contact with the teacher in an attempt to find out more information surrounding the curriculum, and will update this with any new developments.