Who’s your Daddy? Education and the roll of the state (Ann Holt)

Was listening to recording of a paper given at LICC by Ann Holt this afternoon – Singing the Lord's song in a strange land. She's director of the Bible Society Advocacy programme which is how I know her. But this drew on her expertise as a senior and much decorated educationalist. Talking about how Christians should engage with education.

 Lots of good things were said. But perhaps the most powerful for me was the reminder of the limits of the state. My children are my responsibility. They are not the property of the state. It is for the government to resource education – and if a citizen wants a Christian (or a Muslim education for that matter) then it is the state's responsibility to resource it.  Education has become a tool of social engineering to achieve economic objectives. The definition of child welfare as defined by the government is framed in entirely economic terms. Not necessarily a bad thing but a reminder that government falls far short of being the mother and father of us all. That is totalitarianism however accountable the government claims to be to the electorate. By all means tot up your economic benchmarks Mr Brown and Mr Balls. But my children remain my children not yours. Course that rather puts the ball(s) in my court. Oops.

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