Press "Enter" to skip to content

A valedictorian delivers a whack to schooling

Now, that’s some valedictorian. High school girl uses her moment at the podium to slam the philosophy and practice of government schooling — and even cites John Taylor Gatto. And Mencken.

Maybe there’s hope yet.


  1. Pat
    Pat July 27, 2010 9:00 pm

    Wonder what the school officials thought of that speech…

  2. Kevin Wilmeth
    Kevin Wilmeth July 27, 2010 10:29 pm

    Wow. I can’t even remember the speech I gave at my own graduation–not one bit of it–but I can say with certainty that it was nothing at all like that. It took me many more years to figure these things out!

    Hope, indeed. A copy of this is going into the files for my daughter, not yet two. Thanks for the reference Claire!

  3. Karen
    Karen July 28, 2010 5:54 am

    Very cool and on point. As I’ve aged, I have realized more and more just how lucky I was to have my father’s guidance and input into my education. He was Jesuit educated and insisted that I engage in critical thinking. We often discussed my homework and his usual remark was “That’s what you need to put on the test, but the real rest of the story is…”. He made me play devil’s advocate in those discussions so I would think things thru rather than just accept dogma and propoganda. Sadly, today most parents are just products of the system themselves and don’t have that gift of thinking to pass on to their children.

  4. Kent McManigal
    Kent McManigal July 28, 2010 2:11 pm

    I was that person who weighed whether the good grade for turning in thwas worth giving up the days in the woods.

  5. Kent McManigal
    Kent McManigal July 28, 2010 2:16 pm

    My computer hiccupped and posted my comment while I was writing… What I was trying to say is…

    I was that person who weighed whether the good grade for turning in the project was worth giving up the days in the woods. Very often, the projects and the homework lost the fight. I watched my younger sister work long hours on assignments, and study for hours for each test. I knew that was not what I wanted. She ended up somewhere around the top of her class (may have even been valedictorian for all I know). I was somewhere in the middle of mine.

  6. Ellendra
    Ellendra July 28, 2010 8:11 pm

    I was the one who let homework slide because I was too busy studying something more interesting. Did great on tests because I do learn quickly, but I admit I failed quite a few classes simply by not turning things in.

    The irony is, most of the people who got A’s don’t remember even a fraction of what was taught. But I still do. I didn’t memorize, I learned. There’s a difference. Unfortunately it’s a difference the schools don’t care about.

  7. charliegirl
    charliegirl August 4, 2010 5:29 pm

    I discovered the beginning of these things when my youngest was about to enter the 10th grade. I was so sick about my ‘discovery’ (and the more I read the sicker I got!) I pulled her out of public school and put her in a private christian school. Not perfect by any means, and they have their own set of unique problems. But far superior to the public warehouses they are dumbed down in.
    God bless this young lady for not only seeing and understanding her predicatment, but having the guts to speak it out to her fellow students.
    No doubt there were those who disagreed with her, but it is the truth nonetheless.

Leave a Reply