One would have thought that all vestiges of National Socialism were erased, when the Federal Republic of Germany was established after World War II. But those who created post-war Germany apparently were willing to extend freedom to the German people only just so far. They were not willing to allow German families the right to educate their children outside of the state-run system.
That stands in stark contrast to America’s Founding Fathers’ view of education. Nowhere in the U.S. Constitution does it state that education comes under the authority of the federal government. And the Tenth Amendment makes it perfectly clear that “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States, respectively, or to the people.”
Our Founders understood very well the perils of a compulsory educational system run by the federal government. As Sheldon Richman wrote in his book Separating School and State:
"Throughout history, rulers and court intellectuals have aspired to use the educational system to shape their nations. The model was set out by Plato in The Republic and was constructed most faithfully in Soviet Russia, Fascist Italy, and Nazi Germany…. One can see how irresistible a vehicle the schools would be to any social engineer. They represent a unique opportunity to mold future citizens early in life, to instill in them the proper reverence for the ruling culture, and to prepare them to be obedient and obeisant taxpayers and soldiers."
While the number of home-schooled children is growing in the U.S., and has reached almost a million today, home-schooling in general does not always get a very favorable press. A recent network television documentary on home-schooling highlighted situations of neglected or abused children, parents who were portrayed as neurotic sociopaths, etc. It’s no surprise that teachers unions are against home-schooling and lobby states to make home-schooling as difficult as possible for families, by setting up a regulatory maze for parents to contend with.
Despite the Constitution’s clear restriction on federal government involvement in education, the federal Department of Education was created during the Carter administration. Is it mere coincidence that the performance of American students on a variety of standardized tests has steadily deteriorated, since the Department of Education was established?
As pointed out in the article, despite the increasing popularity of home-schooling in America, it is threatened with being made illegal. This threat comes from the attempts to form regional trade blocks, such as the North American Union, which is an obvious imitation of the European Union. And the ultimate threat comes from the United Nations, which is pushing member states to embrace international law. The long line of U.N. conferences over the years makes it clear that the final goal is to create an international system that will control every aspect of human activity everywhere on the planet, including education.
Just because Hitler liked the arrangement of centralized education doesn’t mean that we should. Education should be left up to the choice of the parents in their local communities, not coerced by an unaccountable bureaucracy, regardless of its political label.