Wednesday, 30 April 2014

What are parents responsible for?

The introduction of free school meals was instigated during the Second World War when times were really tough.  Following the war, while the country recovered from the ravages of war, the scheme was retained.  It now appears that the state needs to continue to feed our children while parents save their money for foreign holidays and other niceties. The latest plan in our primary schools is to provide free school meals for under 7 year old. Where does the responsibility of parents end and state take over?  I would have thought that a parents responsibility was to at least feed their offspring.  Now the state is expected to provide a meal for pupils in the middle of the day because the child may not get one at home. Some parents see this as a great opportunity to pass on their responsibilities to the state and get the rest of us to pay for it.  Schools are their to educate children. That includes social education as well as academic but it does not include teaching students how to eat with a knife and fork or what table manners are.  These should come from a home life that has families eating together and socialising together.  All we are doing is encouraging those lazy parents who shouldn't have had children in the first place to ignore their responsibilities and allow the rest of us to pick up the pieces.  Parents are quite capable of providing a packed lunch for their pupils and then providing a hot meal in the evening.  Yet again schools are expected to take on the role of loco parentis but without the backing of parents who see schools as cheap child minding facilities.