Monday, February 23, 2015

{Review} IndoctriNation

I was selected to review the documentary IndoctriNation produced by Great Commission Films.  This film discusses the American public schools and how they have affected the decline of Christianity in America. 

Review: IndoctriNation. Public Schools, Public Education, Homeschooling
For the purpose of the review I received the physical DVD of the film to view at my leisure.  While I like to be open and have discussions with Amber about all facets of life, I decided to view this alone as I was unfamiliar with the producer. 

IndoctriNation runs about an hour and forty minutes, which is honestly too long for me to watch all in one sitting if I need to view it privately.  Instead I viewed this from my computer over multiple sessions while Amber was working on craft projects or assignments where she did not need my constant input.

The documentary is presented by a Scottish filmmaker named Colin Gunn who is known for controversial films and is also a homeschool father.  In the process of making IndoctriNation he takes his family, including his American wife, across portions of the United States searching out the effects of public school.  They ironically travel in a big yellow school bus, which is a fun little tie throughout the film.

The premise of the film is to discuss the loss in our schools of Christian ethics that appear to have been replaced with liberal, government and socialistic ideas.  Interviews with parents, Christian public school teachers and administrators, pastors, education experts, college administrators and even Ken Ham are peppered throughout.  All discuss the slow degradation of the American public schools over the years.  Some interviews come from the viewpoint of Christians who see the removal of God from the schools as the root of the problem.  Others see the Department of Education's programs as stumbling blocks that have us now graduating children who have only been taught to the standardized test and are no longer ready for work or college.

As stated in IndoctriNation, many Christians are working toward school reform but a large problem seems to be how to make this reform happen.  When we have come to a time that the name of God cannot be mentioned in public schools it is hard for Christians to live their faith.  Many Christian teachers choose to show their faith in actions.  Others have chosen to given up their positions.  Christian parents are left with the choice of removing their children from public schools to protect their values or to keep the children in the schools as a witness. The movie does not necessarily support any direct solution, instead it presents options to parents and one of which is homeschooling.

Quite a bit of information about the history and development of the American public school system is presented throughout the middle and latter parts of the film.  I found this background to be intriguing, especially the political and social climate involved each time the school system changed.  IndoctriNation argues that the current public school model is based on a Darwin type evolutionary model with age segregated, peer based education.  Also much of the foundation of compulsory education comes from the ideals espoused by Karl Marx who wanted to destroy the influence of the family and promote social education.

IndoctriNation is definitely a thought provoking documentary about the current state of our public school system.  I did have a hard time getting past the beginning of the film though and honestly if it hadn't been a review I would not have made it to the more interesting parts.  It starts out with quite a few clips from Baptist pastors who are railing against the public school system.  While much of what they say is true, it presents a very one sided start to the film. Still, I'm glad I made it past the initial section to the meatier portions of the film.

Please checkout what the other members of the Review Crew thought of IndoctriNation

IndoctriNation DVD Review

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