Parental Choice

So anyway. The grammar behind ‘parental choice’ (not to be confused with the grammar schools behind ‘parental choice’). Is it the same as the grammar behind ‘consumer choice’? I think not. Because ‘consumer choice’, if it means anything, must involve choice between the objects the consumer can consume. Not even the most rabid of neo-liberal ideologues would ever say something like ‘we want to see the consumer able to choose from a wider range of names for his dog’, unless we reach a point in the future where you have to pay to choose from a set list of names in order to be able to give your dog a name and you have some sort of totalitarian panopticon in operation under which calling your dog anything other than the designated name is punished.

Parental choice, then, if we follow the example of consumer choice, means a choice between the objects the parent can parent. So true parental choice would at least have to involve some form of choice between children, and may even extend to a choice not confined to the parenting of children, but to the parenting of other things too: animals, pokemons, trees, sea monkeys, and so on and so forth. Let us ignore the potential extension of choice for now and stick with the choice between children. It seems to me that adhering to true parental choice in this regard this provides an easy solution to the grammar school lobby/association for quality education problem concerning academic selection. By concentrating on parental choice, it is a matter for the parent not to choose the right school for the child, but the right child for the school. So school places would be allocated by lottery to parents, and through consultation of ‘child information packs’ provided by the Department of Education, they would choose whichever child available in the local catchment area best fits the school admissions criteria.

Flawless, even if I do say so myself.


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