Category : Children

South Carolina Anglican Bishop Mark Lawrence Calls for a Bishop Coadjutor

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Children, Marriage & Family, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

(CNBC) Coronavirus forced 62% of summer camps to close this year and early estimates predict the industry will take a $16 billion revenue hit

If you visited Lochearn Camp For Girls, nestled on the shores of Vermont’s Lake Fairlee, during the summer months you’d likely hear the sounds of tennis balls hitting the court, horses trotting in the nearby corrals and girls laughing as they canoe in pristine waters.

But this year, the grounds are much quieter without the roughly 360 campers Lochearn welcomes each summer. Amid the coronavirus outbreak, camp director Tony Oyenarte and his team decided to close the overnight resident program for the 2020 season. “It was the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make as a camp director and as a businessman,” Oyenarte tells CNBC Make It.

“We’ve been open for 104 consecutive years. We went through the flu of 1918, both world wars, H1N1. But when June 1 came, and we had to make a decision for the summer, it was focused on: Are we gonna be able to deliver an experience that’s going to be safe and is it going to be fun?” Oyenarte says. And the short answer, after much soul searching, was no. “At the end of the day, we just said it’s not going to be the best experience for our campers and our staff.”

Read it all.

Posted in America/U.S.A., Children, Economy, Marriage & Family, Sports

(The State) South Carolina students may not return to schools if COVID-19 spread doesn’t slow, official says

If coronavirus cases continue to rise as they have been for the last few weeks, K-12 students will not likely return to in-person education in the fall, a top official said Monday.

“If it continues on the same path we’re on right now it’s going to be extremely difficult for us to be able to go back face-to-face,” S.C. Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman said at a Monday press conference. “Hopefully we’ll see a change and things will start decreasing.”

There is no question being able to teach in-person is better — especially for young students — than being purely online, Spearman said. However, she said she will not risk student and teacher safety to meet that goal.

Read it all.

Posted in * South Carolina, Children, Education, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Politics in General, State Government

Thanks Dad

Posted in Children, Marriage & Family

(Inside Higher Ed) A Yale University student voices her concerns about reopening campuses in the fall.

Special circumstances. I am an only child, and my parents have health conditions that put them at a risk of getting very ill. Who is going to take care of them if I am at college? Not their siblings, who are also high risk, and not my grandparents, who are in their 80s. What happens to students who suffer from underlying medical conditions? What about graduate students and nontraditional undergrads who have children? What if elementary schools do not reopen in the fall or close midsemester? What if we see more young children develop COVID-related Kawasaki syndrome?

Worst-case scenario. The death rate for university-age students is estimated to be about 0.2 percent, and the hospitalization rate is estimated to be 2.5 percent. At a university like mine, with a student population of roughly 13,000, we risk having 325 students sick enough to be hospitalized and 26 students die in a worst-case-scenario outbreak. Our professors, though fewer in number, face even higher hospitalization and death rates.

Is this a price we’re willing to pay? If the decision were up to me, I would say no. If a vaccine or effective treatment were developed between now and January, such deaths would be entirely needless.

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Education, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family, Young Adults

(Economist) A nine-year-old aims to be the youngest chess grandmaster ever

There are plenty of reasons why Tanitoluwa Adewumi captured the world’s attention in March 2019 after winning the New York State chess championship in his age group. Nine-year-old “Tani” was living in a Manhattan homeless shelter. And he was a refugee. Tani’s family had fled northern Nigeria and sought asylum in America in 2017 after being threatened by Boko Haram, a jihadist group. Oh, one more thing: when Tani took home the state championship trophy, he had been playing for only a year. It is little wonder his inspiring story is already the subject of three books (the first was published on April 14th) and a film.

But the story doesn’t end there. Tani is getting better. Chess players are ranked by the United States Chess Federation and the World Chess Federation using the Elo system. Named after Arpad Elo, a Hungarian-American physics professor and chess enthusiast, Elo ratings are based on a player’s performance in matches, and the skill level of their opponents, according to a mathematical formula. A beginner typically scores 800, an average player 1500 and a professional 2200. Grandmasters score above 2500. After his win a year ago, Tani was rated at 1587, or 20th among eight-year-olds in America. Today he is rated at 2059, number three among players his age, and on track to be number one.

Read it all.

Posted in America/U.S.A., Children, Nigeria, Religion & Culture, Terrorism

(CSM) With new urgency, parents learn how to talk to kids about race

As an African American parent, Cassandre Dunbar in Charlotte, North Carolina, always knew she and her husband would have “the talk” with their son, the one preparing him for interactions with law enforcement.

But she never dreamed it would be necessary at 5 years old.

“I thought the cops were supposed to help us? Are they only helpful to white people?” he asked after taking in TV coverage of protests and overhearing his parents discuss the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor.

Ms. Dunbar explained to her eldest child: “Some people have a hard time understanding that skin color doesn’t have anything to do with what kind of person you are. I said that, yes, cops are meant to help us all, but some cops aren’t good cops and the bad ones really aren’t helpful to people who look like us.”

Many parents of all races are struggling with similar conversations after a week of outrage and sadness that spilled into streets worldwide after video of Mr. Floyd’s death emerged. It came after months of family togetherness in coronavirus lockdown, a time when kids have been cut off from schools and peers.

Read it all.

Posted in Anthropology, Books, Children, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Police/Fire, Race/Race Relations, Theology, Violence

(Fox5DC) What a fine young man–7-year-old throws personal prom for babysitter after hers was canceled

You’re never too young to plan, and then throw, a prom.

A 7-year-old in North Carolina showed his nanny how much she really meant to him by throwing her a private prom. He was reportedly inspired to hold the socially-distant dance after the COVID-19 pandemic upended the young woman’s original prom plans.

Curtis Rogers went two months without seeing his nanny, Rachel Chapman, due to the coronavirus, ABC 11 reports. Rogers described Chapman as “one of the best people I’ve known” and it definitely shows.

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Teens / Youth

(Diocese of South Carolina) St. Christopher Cancels All Sessions of 2020 Traditional Residential Summer Camp

Read it all:

With grave sorrow, The Rev. Robert Lawrence and Bishop Mark Lawrence, announced at the meeting of Diocesan Council on Thursday, May 21, that St. Christopher would be canceling all of its traditional residential summer camp sessions. The first three sessions had already been canceled, while awaiting new guidelines for the safe operation of residential camps. Those long awaited guidelines, drafted in cooperation with the American Camp Association and the CDC, were released early last week. Upon a thorough review of what would be required to fully implement all safeguards, it was regretfully determined that in doing so, “Camp Saint Christopher” as many have come to know it, would be unrecognizable. Restrictions on groups size, numbers in cabins, cabin ventilation, wearing of mask, food service, group interactions, and more were simply too much. One only has to imagine a first time camper not having a parent be able to accompany them to their cabin on check in, facing daily temperature checks, eating many of their meals from takeout bags, and only interacting with their own cabin group to realize this would not be camp. To borrow from what was so aptly stated by David Schnitzer, Camp Kanuga Director, “social distancing is the antithesis of what we do.” Indeed it is.

In the wake of this cancelation, St. Christopher is encouraging all of those that have made summer camp arrangements, to allow their payments to be converted to a charitable contribution. Additionally, any monies already paid can be used as a credit for any future booking at St. Christopher to include personal retreats, Day Camps being developed now for this summer, or as a credit toward Summer Camp 2021. Anyone that does allow their full credit to be held specifically for Summer Camp 2021 will also be offered priority in early registration next year. “We want to salvage as much of this summer as possible, and reduce the sting of this bitter news” said Bob Lawrence. “We will survive this painful time, but we need your prayers and continued contributions to see us through.”

Posted in * South Carolina, Children, Education, Parish Ministry

(NYT) Hunger Program’s Slow Start Leaves Millions of Children Waiting

As child hunger soars to levels without modern precedent, an emergency program Congress created two months ago has reached only a small fraction of the 30 million children it was intended to help.

The program, Pandemic-EBT, aims to compensate for the declining reach of school meals by placing their value on electronic cards that families can use in grocery stores. But collecting lunch lists from thousands of school districts, transferring them to often-outdated state computers and issuing specialized cards has proved much harder than envisioned, leaving millions of needy families waiting to buy food.

Congress approved the effort in mid-March as part of the Families First act, its first major coronavirus relief package. By May 15, only about 15 percent of eligible children had received benefits, according to an analysis by The New York Times. Just 12 states had started sending money, and Michigan and Rhode Island alone had finished.

The pace is accelerating, with millions of families expected to receive payments in the coming weeks. But 16 states still lack federal approval to begin the payments and Utah declined to participate, saying it did not have the administrative capacity to distribute the money. Many Southern states with high rates of child hunger have gotten a slow start.

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Dieting/Food/Nutrition, Poverty

(SN) Births in the United States have dropped to a 34-year low

For the fifth year in a row, the number of babies born in the United States has declined. It’s the lowest number of births — just under 3.75 million in 2019, gleaned from birth certificate data — since 1985, according to the report published online May 20 from the National Center for Health Statistics. Since 2014, that number has been dropping 1 percent on average per year.

There’s been a general downward trend in births since the Great Recession, which lasted from 2007 to 2009. In periods of economic uncertainty, births tend to drop, says family demographer Karen Benjamin Guzzo of Bowling Green State University in Ohio. But rather than rebounding after the recession ended, as would be expected, births have continued to fall. It’s an indication that not everyone’s prospects improved as the economy recovered, she says.

People like to feel certain about their coming years before they have children, says Guzzo, who was not involved in the new report. But many younger adults struggle with student loan debt, face soaring home prices and hold jobs that lack health benefits or sick days, she says. Considering the costs for childcare and providing for their children’s education on top of that leads some people to question whether they can afford to be a good parent.

“When the economy sort of writ large looks good,” Guzzo says, “it doesn’t necessarily mean it looks good for individuals and particularly for younger folks in their child bearing years.” Even if young people are working, she says, “they’re just not in a place where they feel confident in their future.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, America/U.S.A., Children, Marriage & Family

([London] Times) China plans free childcare and tax cuts as birthrate falls to 70-year low

China may cover much of the cost of childcare, from birth to college graduation, to help reverse a decline in the birthrate.

In advance of the National People’s Congress, the rubberstamp legislature that convenes on Friday in Beijing, an influential policy advisory body has suggested that wide-ranging financial support be offered to families to address the falling birthrate in the world’s most populous country, including providing income tax cuts for new parents.

“In recent years the birthrates have plummeted, and the subsequent social and economic problems have become more severe by the day,” the China Democratic League said. It is proposing a series of subsidies to help with childcare costs and even payments to grandparents so they are rewarded for helping young parents to look after their offspring.

Read it all (subscription).

Posted in Anthropology, Children, China, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Politics in General

(NPR) With School Buildings Closed, Children’s Mental Health Is Suffering

[Dimitri ] Christakis says the serious effects of this crisis on children like Phoebe have been overlooked.

“The decision to close schools initially, and now to potentially keep them closed, isn’t, I think, taking the full measure of the impact this is going to have on children,” he told NPR. “Not just the short term, but the long term.”

The problem, Christakis says, isn’t just learning loss, which is expected to fall particularly hard on low-income children with unequal access to distance learning. Recent research from a large testing association on the “COVID-19 slide” suggests children may return in the fall having made almost a third less progress in reading, and half as much progress in math, compared with what they would have in a typical school year.

Mental health and social-emotional development, Christakis argues, have been less discussed: “The social-emotional needs of children to connect with other children in real time and space, whether it’s for physical activity, unstructured play or structured play, this is immensely important for young children in particular.” A new study in JAMA Pediatrics, he says, documents elevated depression and anxiety among children under lockdown in China.

A third major risk, says Christakis, is child abuse.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Education, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family, Psychology, Science & Technology

(JE) Anglican Bishop Steve Wood, COVID-19 and “Beauty from Ashes”

Bishop Steve Wood was released from the hospital following 10 days on a ventilator amidst treatment for COVID-19. An otherwise healthy man in his 50s who had not before been hospitalized, Wood is far from the image of elderly or medically compromised patients we regularly read about in the news.

The rector of St. Andrew’s Church and bishop for the Anglican Diocese of the Carolinas shares with the Institute on Religion & Democracy’s Jeff Walton about what sustained him during a period of intensive care, ongoing recovery and God bringing “beauty from ashes.”

Take the time to watch it all (just under 18 minutes).

Posted in * South Carolina, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Children, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

(Guardian) Rory Kinnear–My sister died of coronavirus. She needed care, but her life was not disposable

So it was coronavirus that killed her. It wasn’t her “underlying conditions”. Prior to her diagnosis, she hadn’t been in hospital for 18 months – an unusually care-free period for Karina. No, it was a virulent, aggressive and still only partially understood virus that was responsible, a virus that is causing thousands of people, despite the unstinting bravery of the medical staff of this country, to say a distanced goodbye to relatives who would still be alive had they not contracted it.

No one could describe Karina as weak: she did not have it coming, she was no more disposable than anyone else. Her death was not inevitable, does not ease our burden, is not a blessing. She was vulnerable, yes. She needed the care of others to live. I will remain for ever grateful to the hundreds of caregivers who have, at one point or another, looked after her with such kindness and dedication, some of whom have maintained a relationship with her long after their retirement. Grateful too to live in a country that makes provisions of care free to all, no matter one’s need, however stretched and fraying their chronic underfunding increasingly makes them.

But this disease is not just killing people who would have died soon anyway. It is making the lives of those most in need of our care and compassion even harder, even more fearful. And if there is anything that I hope might come from Karina’s death, from the tens of thousands of other deaths caused by this disease and its insidious spread, it is that as a country, from government both national and local, we might make our focus the easing of those lives in the future.

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Death / Burial / Funerals, England / UK, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family

(Mirror) Coronavirus: 60,000 families forced onto Universal Credit ‘to be hit’ by two child limit

Around 60,000 families forced onto Universal Credit by Covid-19 could have essential support restricted by the government’s hated ‘two-child limit’.

Families who have to claim the benefit because of job losses and illness will find they are denied support for more than two children.

Ministers have refused to scrap the policy, even temporarily during the coronavirus crisis….

A new report by the Church of England and Child Poverty Action Group said the virus crisis had exposed the injustice of the policy, which mostly hits working families.

Read it all.

Posted in Anthropology, Children, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family, Personal Finance & Investing, Politics in General, Theology

Thursday Food for Thought from GK Chesterton

“Can you not see,” I said, “that fairy tales in their essence are quite solid and straightforward; but that this everlasting fiction about modern life is in its nature essentially incredible? Folk-lore means that the soul is sane, but that the universe is wild and full of marvels. Realism means that the world is dull and full of routine, but that the soul is sick and screaming. The problem of the fairy tale is—what will a healthy man do with a fantastic world?

–GK Chesterton, Tremendous Trifles

Posted in Books, Children, Church History

(Local Paper) How South Carolina summer camps plan to handle changes from coronavirus outbreak

More than 20 million youths across the country attend day and overnight camps, generating more than $27 billion in revenue and providing 1.5 million jobs during the season, according to industry estimates.

At Sullivan’s Oconee County camp, registration is between $945 and $3,930 per child. But it’s hard for her and others in the industry to speak with certainty about what the summer might hold, as they await revised U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention protocols, expected to be released in May.

Sullivan said Camp Chatuga will make “month-to-month” decisions. Maybe sessions can be held in July only, or pushed into August, for instance.

“If it looks too much like it’s going to be a restriction on what camp is all about, that’s going to affect whatever decision we make too,” she said.

Read it all.

Posted in * South Carolina, Children, Economy, Education, Marriage & Family, Sports

(Yesterday’s NYT Front Page) Gasping For Breaths The Size Of A Tablespoon. 32 Days on a Ventilator: One Covid19 Patient’s Fight to Breathe Again

Mr. Bello’s cataclysmic spiral from avid skier, cyclist and runner to grievously ill patient — and the heartbreaking and triumphant twists in doctors’ relentless efforts to save him — underscores the agonizing challenges confronting even highly trained physicians and well-equipped hospitals battling a ferociously capricious virus.

Hospitals have never before had, simultaneously, so many patients so sick that their lungs have basically stopped functioning. And while doctors are experienced at treating similar respiratory failure, the path of patients with Covid-19 can be maddeningly unpredictable.

“It’s like they fall off a cliff,” said Dr. Peggy Lai, a critical care doctor at Mass General. “You see young patients getting sicker and sicker by the day despite everything that you know is good standard of care.”

Without proven therapies to extinguish the infection, doctors ride roller-coasters of trial and error. They weigh risks of uncertain treatments and painstakingly adjust machines in hopes of shoring up patients’ lungs enough that their bodies clear the inflammation and heal.

“The tricky part with this disease,” Dr. Lai said, “is that we have nothing to follow, to know what predicts how sick someone will be and what predicts them getting better.”

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family, Science & Technology

(NYT) Jessica Lustig–What I Learned When My Husband Got Sick With Coronavirus

We both wear disposable gloves. I put my hand through the crook of his arm, and we slowly start for the clinic. The day before was one of the harder ones, with T lightheaded and nauseated most of the day, eating only if I spoon-fed him, coughing more and using his albuterol inhaler more, then coughing more again. He was soaked in sweat in the morning and by evening was lying curled up, looking apprehensive. “I coughed up blood just now,” he told me quietly.

We talked to his doctor on speakerphone. “We are all kind of working blind,” he told us. Many patients, he said, seem to begin to feel better after a week. But others, the more serious and severe cases, take a downturn, and the risks rise as the virus targets the lungs. Pneumonia is a common next step in that downward progression. We read about it in the patients admitted to the hospital. Now the doctor called in a prescription for antibiotics to the CVS pharmacy that would close in less than an hour. I texted T’s friend down the block, and he texted back that he would pick up the medicine. I asked if he would get oranges too; T has been accepting a little fresh-squeezed juice or cut-up pieces, and we were down to one last orange. They suddenly seemed an unimaginably exotic treat.

The doctor told us to go back to the clinic for a chest X-ray first thing in the morning. Now we slowly walk the three blocks, T coughing behind his mask. As we move along the street, we see some other people too — fewer than a few days ago, before Gov. Andrew Cuomo directed New Yorkers to stay indoors as much as possible. Some joggers go by. Just over a week ago, that was still me. Now I point out the buds about to bloom on the branches we pass, drawing T’s attention away from the few passers-by so we won’t see if they start or turn around. A few are wearing their own masks, but they are walking upright, striding along, using them as protection for themselves. Not like us….

Read it all.

Posted in America/U.S.A., Children, Health & Medicine, Marriage & Family, Urban/City Life and Issues

(WSJ) Tevi Troy–A Minyan in the Time of Social Distancing

Losing a parent is always difficult, especially as important financial and religious arrangements must be made during a time of intense grief. A global pandemic doesn’t help. But when my mother died on March 3, my family still had no idea how difficult it would be to stay safe while still honoring her in the Jewish tradition.

The Jewish response to death is communal. The local community comes together to support the mourners, who open up their home for a week of shiva. During this time the kaddish, or Jewish prayer for the dead, is recited at services three times a day. The mourner then may leave the home but remains obligated to say the kaddish three times daily for 11 months. According to Jewish law, these obligations must be fulfilled in the presence of a minyan, or prayer quorum of 10 men over the age of 13.

The current coronavirus crisis creates a challenge for those wishing to adhere to these Jewish mourning customs, especially in light of Judaism’s prioritization of public and individual health over ritual obligation. In Maryland, where I live, synagogues closed their doors last weekend to services and other community activities. In New Jersey, communities could not have communal prayer services in the home or even outdoors. In the interest of safety, similar changes are occurring throughout the country.

Read it all.

Posted in America/U.S.A., Children, Death / Burial / Funerals, Judaism, Marriage & Family, Religion & Culture

Friday Mental Health Break–Children+Music+Outreach+Compassion=Magic

Posted in Children, Health & Medicine, Music

(Church Times) Margaret Houston–Children are family at a church, not guests

While genuine conflicts do exist, and need working through with sensitivity, there is often a lack of welcome related to the presence of children: a child making minimal sounds — often related to what they see or hear in the service — is shushed; someone tuts at a child wriggling out of his or her seat to get a better look at the flowers and the altar where bread is being broken; initiatives to make worship more accessible to children are dismissed in PCC meetings without even being considered. Why is that?

Everyone brings unexamined assumptions with them to church: about what church is for, why children come, and whom church is for. Some assumptions may be based on adults’ childhood experiences. “There [can be] a sense of ‘I never had that freedom in church, so why should they?’” the Vicar of Lindley, in Huddersfield, Canon Rachel Firth, says.

“Extreme reactions either side, very pro or very against, usually have an emotional root,” one London-based church musician told me. Having originally been “very opposed” to introducing all-age worship in her church, she changed her mind — in part, having come to appreciate that the needs of all must be included in worship. “I can’t regard worship now as just something that I dip into and refresh from that has to suit me,” she said.

While acknowledging that not every part of every service would resonate with everyone, she said: “I have grown into loving these services. Perhaps a breakthrough was when it came over fully — or I understood better — that ‘all-age’ includes the grown and the old” as well as children.

The journey that she has gone on follows the unravelling of one of her own assumptions: that church is for adults, and that children are there as guests or observers.

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Parish Ministry

(Mirror) Abortion rates hit record levels as parents worry about cost of bringing up children

Abortion rates have hit a record high in England and Wales as parents are becoming more conscious of the costs of bringing up a child.

Office for National Statistics figures show 24% of females who fell pregnant in 2018 chose a termination.

Up from 22.7% the previous year, it was the highest percentage since records began 30 years ago.

Abortion care charity BPAS suggests financial concerns are putting women off. Clare Murphy, director of external affairs, said: “We’ve seen an increasingly cautious approach, likely to be driven by factors from the two-child limit to Brexit .”

The Government’s policy of limiting welfare benefits to two children prevents parents from seeking extra funding for a third child, if born after April 2017.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, --Wales, Children, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Life Ethics

(FB) Charles Fain Lehman Reviews Ross Douthat’s ‘The Decadent Society’

Each of Douthat’s “four horsemen of decadence”—economic stagnation, collective infertility, political sclerosis, and cultural repetition—represents structural choices to sacrifice the future for the present. Weak innovation is driven by selecting short-term returns over investment, and by a publish-or-perish paradigm that makes careers but not discoveries. Collapsing fertility rates reflect deferred childbearing, spending the future social and personal benefits of children to ensure individuals’ present stability. Sclerosis is produced by a political class that clings to its own power, at the cost of training a future elite. And cultural repetition is in large part a product of Hollywood playing it safe, churning out blockbuster pablum instead of investing in something that might fail.

In other words, what is meant by “decadence” is in part “risk-averseness.” Where once we dared to do impossible things in the hope of a better tomorrow, now we pour everything possible into simply preserving the status quo.

The book’s last section sees Douthat imagining ways we could break out of this feedback loop. Through three chapters, he considers a societal collapse driven by mass strife over immigration, a la Michel Houllebecq; a rising Africa driving “renaissance,” and a return either to the will to power through renewed space exploration, or the will to meaning through a religious revival.

Even in the case of catastrophe, Douthat seems to see such regime-shattering possibilities as fundamentally positive. The return of history, even in its worst forms, might be better than the eternal now. As writer Tara Isabella Burton put it in her own review, “What we need, Douthat implies, is a renewed eschatological vision of what history, and what we, are for [emphasis in original].” It is little surprise that among Douthat’s many positive reviewers is arch-techno-optimist Peter Thiel, who writes that, “If there is a problem with the book, it is that Douthat does not press his own theme [of returning to the future] urgently enough.”

For all the book’s many strengths, there is one question to which Douthat gives perhaps inadequate treatment: Why has decadence happened?

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, America/U.S.A., Books, Children, Economy, Marriage & Family

Monday Morning Mental Health Break–(NBC) Meet the talented 6-year-old drummer already getting university attention

Posted in Children, Education, Music

(Richard Ostling) Can U.S. students pray in school?

THE QUESTION:

Can students pray in U.S. public schools?

THE RELIGION GUY’S ANSWER:

The Trump Administration’s education and justice departments, after work with government attorneys, issued policy guidance to public schools January 16 on this emotional-laden and oft-misunderstood issue. The answer is well settled in American law and agreed upon by a very wide range of religious and public education organizations.

Yes, depending.

Yes, if a student initiates prayer and does not disrupt classes. Students also enjoy other religious rights on an equal basis with non-religious activities, as surveyed below. But the answer is no if public school systems, administrators or teachers authorize prayers in an official capacity. Federal court edicts say that violates the Constitution’s ban on government “establishment of religion.” (Private schools, of course, can do whatever they want about religion.)

Read it all.

Posted in America/U.S.A., Children, Education, Law & Legal Issues, Religion & Culture, Spirituality/Prayer

(Guardian) ‘Schools are killing curiosity’: why we need to stop telling children to shut up and learn

Young children sit cross-legged on the mat as their teacher prepares to teach them about the weather, equipped with pictures of clouds. Outside the classroom, lightning forks across a dark sky and thunder rumbles. Curious children call out and point, but the teacher draws their attention back – that is not how the lesson target says they are going to learn about the weather.

It could be a scene in almost any school. Children, full of questions about things that interest them, are learning not to ask them at school. Against a background of tests and targets, unscripted queries go mainly unanswered and learning opportunities are lost.

Yet the latest American research suggests we should be encouraging questions, because curious children do better. Researchers from the University of Michigan CS Mott Children’s Hospital and the Center for Human Growth and Development investigated curiosity in 6,200 children, part of the US Early Childhood Longitudinal Study. The study is highlighted in a new book by Judith Judd and me, How to Succeed at School. What Every Parent Should Know.

Read it all.

Posted in Anthropology, Children, Education, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Psychology, Theology

Wednesday Encouragement–After being bullied for his sneakers, teen donates shoes to those in need

Kyler Nipper started the nonprofit Kyler’s Kicks to make sure others with limited means can have a new pair of shoes. It’s a struggle Kyler knows all too well. The 14-year-old lives in a shelter with his family and says he was bullied and attacked for his worn-out sneakers

Watch it all from NBC.

Posted in Charities/Non-Profit Organizations, Children, Education, Pastoral Theology, Poverty, Stewardship

(EF) TobyMac writes a song about the passing of his son

TobyMac, former member of DC Talk and an influential Hip Hop artist with seven solo albums, has written a song about the experience of losing a son.

“‘21 years’ is a song I wrote about the recent passing of my firstborn son, Truett Foster McKeehan. I loved him with all my heart. Until something in life hits you this hard, you never know how you will handle it”, the artist said on his Instagram account. He said he was thankful for all those who have surrounded his family with “love, starting with God’s”.

He and his wife Amanda have four other children.

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Death / Burial / Funerals, Evangelicals, Marriage & Family, Music, Theology