Family as Educator, Parent Education, and the Perennial Family Crisis
This essay attempts to provide historical insight on two themes that are central to any discussion of parents as educators: first, the capacity of modern-day families to provide stable and vital educational settings for children; and, second, the nature and prospects of programs in parent education for improving parenting skills and enhancing child development. I approach these subjects as a historian, educator, and policy analyst. My research interests center on the evolution of child and family life during the past four centuries, and the creation of public and private institutions to integrate the young, especially poor, minority youth, into the cultural and economic mainstream. In the last few years I have focused particularly on the emergence of the juvenile justice system and the genesis of the fields of child development and parent education. I have appraised policies in both fields rather critically, as poorly designed, clumsily implemented, sex biased, and often inappropriate to the problems they were designed to alleviate (Schlossman, 1976, 1977, 1978a, 1978b, 1983; Schlossman and Wallach, 1978).
KeywordsParent Education Juvenile Justice System Nursery School Child Rear Juvenile Court
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