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Is Public School Hurting Your Child?

August 27, 2018

August 27, 2018

You work very hard to make the best life for your child. You are a good parent. You talk to their teachers and go to school meetings but you are still having the same issues with your child’s behavior. Your beloved child is struggling with his or her school work, not being attentive in class, and is not earning the grades you know they can. What is the problem?

I have been a tutor and academic coach for five years to teens all over America who have the same challenges as your child. From my research and experience, I have found many insights to crack the code for your child to succeed.

As an individual human being that is part of a collective, your child does not belong in the traditional public school system. I’m not saying that your children cannot be successful in public schools, but the system was not made for them.

As an individual human being that is part of a collective, your child does not belong in the traditional public school system. I’m not saying that your children cannot be successful in public schools, but the system was not made for them.

In order to create a circus experience, human beings once adopted baby elephants and trained them to follow instructions to amuse crowds. Elephants can easily master following their trainer’s instructions, but that is not their natural role in society. The African elephant’s role on the savanna is to eat while pulling down trees and breaking up thorny bushes, which in turn helps other animals to survive. They also use their tusks to create water holes in dry river beds. The Asian elephant prevents the overgrowth of vegetation by eating and walking while spreading the seeds of the vegetation it eats. When an African or Asian elephant is removed from its habitat, it can’t do its job and causes more work for the other elephants, thus negatively impacting their natural environment and the other animals living on the savanna.

Your child was born into this world with an innate role in society. As a parent, you know your child’s talents. Does she write well? Is he great at building things? Can she dance? Is she great at math? Is she a great leader? Is he a great communicator? Whatever your child’s talents are, is the reason they exist. That raw material given to your child to help them build a great life is their special gift and contribution to society.  That gift is their talent.

Most of our educational institutions do not value talent. They value the structures put in place to build an orderly civilization. They value the work it takes to build a manmade ecosystem or economy. Instead, we are supposed to work in harmony with natural ecosystems not create our own version of nature.  The current public education system works for what it was made for: a system for training human beings to respond to authority in a specific way. It is perfect for training humans to be on time, to follow rules, and to learn discipline. These things aren’t bad, but sometimes you need to break the rules and follow your own ideas in order to contribute to humanity in a more meaningful way.

How do we change? I am suggesting a purpose-driven education that aligns values, interests, and passions. Many private and charter schools are designed to focus on a child’s purpose. Thankfully, this type of education already exists in forms accessible to everyone. In the homeschooling realm, you have concepts like ‘unschooling’ which allows the child total freedom in their education. Rather than conditioning their child to conform to a social standard, the child is free to explore whatever topic they see fit, while parents nurture their child’s interests through experience, books, and other educational tools. Structured homeschooling is another option as well. Even if these two forms of education aren’t practical for you, another option is seeking a mentor or even a life coach (for teens) so your child can receive valuable lessons about their passions and talents.

Parents who have children in the public school system, you have a decision to make. Ultimately, if you’re going to raise well-rounded children, filled with purpose and love for themselves, we need to take a different approach. Too many of our youth suffer from lack of direction, depression and a low sense of self-worth because of the structure of public schools. Today, more Black parents are homeschooling their children and others are exploring untraditional educational options as well. What will you do?

by Brandon Berry, Academic and Life Coach for Teens and Young Adult

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Successful Black Parenting is proud to announce that we are bringing our readers more researched-based content written by the members of the American Psychological Association’s (APA) RESilience Initiative, which provides resources to parents and caregivers for promoting the strength, health, and well-being of children and youth of color. We will also feature their members who have contributed articles to Successful Black Parenting on our BackTalk podcast. Learn more about the RESilience Initiative at


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