Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Race to Nowhere

I've been feeling the pangs to blog again recently. I've been tweeting so much in the last couple years that my blog has fallen by the wayside. I post these little 140 character worth nuggets and that has been enough to satiate me. If I have a little more to say, I post a message on Facebook with a little longer of a diatribe. But I just saw an announcement in the Chabad of Dallas e-newsletter that I thought was great and wanted to share. I decided a blog post was appropriate. Here goes....

From the Chabad email: Akiba Academy (the local Modern Orthodox Jewish Day School) is hosting a showing of the must see documentary, "Race To Nowhere," on Wednesday, March 30 at 7:00pm. The film addresses the issues of schools, parents, and students being pushed to over perform.

I think its important for all parents (and perhaps their kids too) to go and see a documentary like this. Today, kids are so overscheduled. School is one thing, and in the case of religious Jewish youths, is not only secular studies but a dual curriculum Day School or after school Jewish studies program. For other youngsters, they have sports, playdates, tutoring, music lessons, etc etc etc. We live across from a big park and every single day after school a group of kids line up waiting for their soccer tutor to show up. When I was a little kid, practice was once or twice a week. Not everyday. And somehow I managed to still make the all star team. Yes, supporting your kids in the endevours that they love is awesome! But pushing them to overachieve is another. The film they are screening shows the tragic side of our achievement-obsessed culture, but perhaps it will be an alarm clock for some parents and for students that don't even realize that they are pushing themselves too hard. I'm happy that the Dallas Jewish community is doing a screening of this kind.