Dear Principal Weber,
Thank you for giving my son and me a tour of your beautiful campus last week. You were gracious to spend so much time with us, and we were impressed with the skiing and other wonderful programs your school offers, and with the care you show for the individual student.
Prior to the visit, we were not aware of the extent to which sustainable development is a part of the school’s educational emphasis. The posters on the walls and the students’ artwork heavily promoted sustainable development. Also, the information packet stated that the school’s charter is environmental education.
While studying nature is neutral, the sustainable development movement is not academically nor politically neutral. I don’t think it would be reasonable nor kind for me to have him attend the school and at the same time be critical of its main emphasis. I am sorry we will be missing out on the other wonderful benefits of Soldier Hollow.
Thanks again very much for your kindness and time, and we wish you and your school the very best.
P.S. Here is a journal article that explained to me how environmental education is not academically neutral.
Excerpt: “[E]ducation is concerned with enabling people to think for themselves.
Education for sustainable development, education for deep ecology (Drengson, 1991), or education “for” anything else is inconsistent with that criterion.
In all cases these phrases suggests a pre-determined mode of thinking to which the pupil is expected to prescribe.
Clearly, I would not want my children to be taught sustainable development. The very idea is contrary to the spirit of education.
I would rather have my children educated than conditioned to believe that sustainable development constitutes a constellation of correct environmental views” – Bob Jinkins, Yukon College