I was recently invited to review the DVD documentary IndoctriNation by Great Commission Films with my family. They sent me the DVD, we watched it, and I get to tell you all about it! My opinions in this review are all mine and my husband’s. I was not paid in any way to write this review; I just want to share things with my readers so they can decide on the best things for their families. Onto the review!
First off, we are a homeschooling family. I’m not sure that we are the intended audience for this film. This film is really geared toward showing people why Christian families should not send their kids to public school. It includes a wonderful history of the school system and the thinkers who have shaped the direction of education in our country. It also talks about what kids are taught and when; it also goes over some of the pitfalls that our kids must avoid if they attend public school. I can see this as a gem to pass on to anyone who is wondering why we homeschool, or wondering if they should homeschool, but I don’t need any convincing in that area.
Great for Adults or Older Kids
I thought I could sit down and watch this movie with my kids. After all, they are curious about public school and what could possibly be in a film about education, right? The movie starts out with a warning that it includes material not appropriate for younger children. Still, I could not be moved. I couldn’t think of anything that I wouldn’t want my kids to see in a movie about education. Call me naive, but I guess I forgot a lot of the reasons why my kids are educated at home. My goodness! We didn’t get far into the movie before I tucked my kids into bed and finished the movie with just my husband and myself.
There is a lot of nitty gritty in this film. It is presented wonderfully, but it covers homosexuality taught in schools, birth control being passed out to kids, school bullying, school violence (an interview with a father whose son was killed in the Columbine shootings made me get up and walk out of the room. I was so heartbroken.) There’s also a bunch of stories of Christian teachers being persecuted in school, prayer being banned, and things in the curriculum that promote violence and moral relativism (what is right or wrong depends on the person and situation.) I don’t think I’d let my kids watch this movie unless I had already covered a lot of this ground with them and was willing to discuss premarital sex, Planned Parenthood/abortion, violence/death, and homosexuality with them.
Reasons to Homeschool
My husband watched the DVD with me and we discussed it afterwards. The main thing we agreed on: we agreed with everything the movie talks about. We also re-hashed our other reasons for homeschooling such as a 30+:1 student to teacher ratio, way too much seat work and homework for very young kids, not wanting our kids to fall through the cracks in the system, and the type of food they serve in school, including every holiday with loads of treats our oldest son would have to resist (no red #40 for him as we have noticed it affects him fiercely) or just eat and have to lie to us about. Also: early mornings, bending our family to the school’s schedule, Jesus not being taught and having to fight to even speak his name in school for fear of “offending” someone. You could just say we have a lot of reasons. That being said, I don’t think I can tell every Christian I know that they “must” homeschool their children. I’m not legalistic like that and I don’t think it would be fair of me to assume to know your life. I do think the movie brings up a lot of excellent points that we should all seriously consider before making our choice in education.
All in all, I would recommend this movie. It brings up historical points that you may not be aware of. It also cites a lot of Bible verses for how we should train our children. Again, I don’t think the Bible says you have to homeschool, but if your family is Christian and your kids are not being taught about Christ “…when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.” Deut. 11:18-19, then you have to consider whether they are learning what they should.
To read what everyone else thought of this movie, visit the Old Schoolhouse Review Crew link for this DVD: