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Classical Education

Jacksonville classic school
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Kerby Andersonnever miss viewpoints

Who would have ever thought that classical education would be controversial? The fact that Professor Adam Carrington had to write that “classical education is not a threat” is another indication of how everything has become political.

He begins by asking the question: “Is education Republican or Democrat, conservative or progressive?” His answer is that in a rightly ordered system, it should be neither. It should instruct students about America’s history and ideals.

One of the reasons such education has come under attack is due to the simple fact that it is the learning approach in many private schools and charter schools, and in homeschooling.

Classical education also avoids the “chronological snobbery” so prevalent in many educational programs today.  What is new and fashionable is valued over what has stood the test of time and provides a moral foundation for society.

He argues that “wisdom can be found in many times, places, and persons. We see in the Greeks the birth of philosophy, wherein men such as Plato and Aristotle sought to understand universal truths by studying the human beings around them.” 

We see it in Christianity and the Christian influence in western culture. And we see it in America with a “political system dedicated to human liberty and equality, along with the brilliant institutional structures of federalism and separation of powers found in The Federalist Papers and the US Constitution.”

He is also quick to add that we need not have blind adoration of the past, often filled with evils and horrors. Instead, we should condemn these evil practices and learn from these mistakes of the past.

Classical education can inform our current debates and provide a moral foundation on which to rebuild a broken society.
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