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Growing Up American: From Church School to Scouting


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growing_up_american_from_church_school_to_scouting.htmlAmerican Thinker:

So maybe life in the old days wasn't all Ozzy and Harriet, or Wally and Beaver. In their day, however, we do know that one in ten school-age children were not being diagnosed with ADHD. That also means two-thirds of those children were not being treated with stimulants like Ritalin and Adderall. Neither were 5% of 12-19 year olds taking anti-depressants. This raises the question: besides the egregious influence of pill-pushing pharmaceutical companies, what was different in American life previous to the prescription drug culture in which our children now live?

Television stereotypes aside, let's take a look back at how children used to spend their time:

Church School

My mother, like most of her classmates, left school once a week to attend church school. With parental permission, students left at 1 p.m. and spent the rest of the school day studying their faith at the church of their choice. When McCollum v. Board of Education (1948) stopped religious instructors from entering public schools during the school day to provide religious instruction, it didn't affect our town. For years, students had already been leaving school grounds to receive education at their own church. For many students who couldn't go to church on Sunday, this was the only formal education they received concerning biblical principles and social mores.

For nine years, my mother and her friends left school in the afternoon, walking to church school at the Methodist Church. Friends would part ways, some going to a Catholic Church, some to an Episcopal Church, and so on. By 1952, when Zorach v. Clauson was handed down, and the Supreme Court upheld an arrangement that public schools could release students from school to attend religious education off school grounds, our town had already been in compliance for years. Nothing changed, and all was well in our quintessential American community.Scissors-32x32.png

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