What is Freedom of Education? | Why Separate School and State?
On the Origins of Public Schooling | Nine Assumptions of Modern Schooling | Myths About Public Schooling

The Philosophy of Liberty
Animated introduction to the philosophy of liberty from the International Society for Individual Liberty.
The Philosophy of Liberty (animation)

What is 'Freedom of Education'?

Suggested Reading

Education and the First Amendment
Barry Loberfeld | Ideas on Liberty (9.02)

Freedom of Religion and Public Schooling PDF
James R. Otteson | The Independent Review (2000)

Dangerous Minds
David Edwards | Atlantic Free Press (12.06)

School and State: A Neat Solution to the Neatby Dispute
Daniel Hager | The Freeman (12.03)

Against School: How Public Education Cripples Our Kids, and Why
John Taylor Gatto | Harper's Magazine (9.03)

Here We Go Again
Anthony Gregory | LewRockwell.com (09.05)

More articles and essays »

The Underground History of American Education: An Intimate Investigation into the Problem of Modern Schooling
John Taylor Gatto
The Underground History of American Education | John Taylor Gatto
'The shocking possibility that dumb people don't exist in sufficient numbers to warrant the millions of careers devoted to tending them will seem incredible to you. Yet that is my central proposition: the mass dumbness which justifies official schooling first had to be dreamed of; it isn't real.'
Read it online »
This site assumes an understanding of "freedom of education" that is analogous to the American understanding of the freedoms of religion, speech, press, and assembly.

If freedom of religion does not mean a "right" to compulsory attendance at State-regulated churches where clerics preach a government-approved system of belief, and freedom of assembly doesn't mean the "right" to compulsory attendance at State-run rallies where officials treat us to government-approved speeches, then why would we use the term "freedomof education" to refer to compulsory attendance at State-run schools?

Freedom of education is not education that is controlled or delivered by the State, any more than freedom of speech is speech that is controlled or delivered by the State. Nor is "freedom" to be found within alternatives or mobility within the system (school choice, charter schools). Nor is it found in the "right" to attend State-recognized, State-regulated, privately-funded schools in lieu of State schools. Least of all is it a matter of extending government control -- a.k.a. "strings" -- any more than it already goes into so-called "private schools" (vouchers, tax credits, financial aid).

And freedom of education is certainly not what we exercise when our parents jump through legal hoops so that we may be legally authorized to learn non-institutionally (autonomous education, homeschooling, unschooling, home education, family-based learning, home learning, home-based instruction, autodidacticism, etc.).

If it is to mean anything at all, "freedom of education" can only refer education that is free from government establishment, oversight, restriction, registration, assessment, standards, compulsion, and funding -- just as we understand "freedom of religion" to mean religious belief and practice that are free of government establishment, oversight, restriction, registration, assessment, standards, compulsion, and funding.

Under political control, there can no more exist true freedom of education than there could freedom of religion, speech, conscience, or anything else.

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