The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
3 Points

Should children have the right to choose their learning and education?

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Post Voting Period
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after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/1/2015 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 732 times Debate No: 76055
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (7)
Votes (1)




Children should be free to practice their best judgement, trust and consent, especially in the area of our most pivotal and intimate aspect of life, thought and conceptual development.
The argument here is not that guardians and authority figures should be arrested from involvement in children's learning and educational affairs.
The argument is that even from birth children are not wholly and absolutely dependent beings, but they are deserving of very fundamental apophatic needs necessary to their natural development into greater and greater autonomous agents.
To the degree that it is possible, the child should be left unhampered insomuch as is desired and practical to his survival and agency in assimilating into the physical world as seen fit


I have no doubt that our current method is a little over the top and is basically forcing kids into an oppressive system until they're 18 or 21, then they are kicked out and made to fend for them selves in many cases; however from birth, children are easily influenced, if you abuse a child, they will react poorly to an environment where they may have been physically, emotionally, intellectually or god forbid, sexually abused. I have never seen an intelligent child, just one that is good at reproducing their environment, my cousin and her husband are both engineers and promote a very open minded, respectable approach to information and avoid prejudice and bias. So when I see their kids, they are really open and question things. On the other hand, I look at another cousin who isn't intelligent and their kids are 'ignorant', they could care less about education.
Some promote a young earth, some promote conspiracy theories. I don't want kids to pick up these traits and choose to learn them
Debate Round No. 1


Firstly, thanks for giving me the pleasure of this debate.
To start, most of Con's response was anecdotal, and I will not rebut with countering anecdotes in this round however fun that does seem to me.

The one substantive premise I will rebut here is what I see to be Con's rebuttal to my claim that children are NEVER wholly dependent. Con states, in effect, that children lack intelligence and therefore are easily influenced.(please don't allow me to strawman here if there is nuance I am missing)
My contention and retort here is that it is not intelligence in children that is lacked but the accumulation of perception internal and external that gives a person, child or adult, ever expanding perspective to apply knowledge in manipulating and harnessing the external world.
Evidence to this should be clear. Any person developing skill in any field is dependent largely on prior skill, time and attention. (For instance, ambulation and speech)

Your definition of "education" requested...


I would gladly post definitions, however you limited my argument to 1000 characters, as a result I would be unable to make any argument while sustaining any point, even linking articles would be fruitless.

my point stands that parents already influence their children, and it would not matter if kids have free will to choose what they want to learn or not as they would simply do what their parents did.

you have not suggested at what age kids should have free will...

it is more important to teach kids how to learn, receive and perceive information over making a conclusion and pursuing it with no other knowledge.

Basically, with your logic, I could show a kid the bible, tell him lies that the earth is 6000 years old. then he will go into school perhaps wanting to learn about this. if he had free will to learn what he wanted to, he would be ignorant from day 1... all because the parents directly influenced the kid.

in conclusion, kids don't have free will even if you gave it to them
Debate Round No. 2


Con's effort heretofore is much appreciated. I am compelled to provide encouragement to make a good faith effort, for I am also limited the same by the debate parameters, and this debate was accepted with full disclosure.

Con's first conclusion that " would not matter if kids have free will to choose what they want to learn or not as they would simply do what their parents did." assumes allot and in many ways can runs contrary to logic and observation generally.
The first commonly mistaken assumption is that from birth children are empty vessels with no thought of their own, just waiting to be filled with any combination of substance from any source willing.
Next time you're in the presence of a baby/toddler, take some stairs with it in trail and observe the level of judgement displayed and caution exercised.

I do not contend of any age.
It is a empirical fact that every human, young and old, has Free Will.
And the capacity to learn is innate in human nature.(esp. in infancy)


I do not doubt the right to free will, I advocate it with all of my being, however until logic and reason are received for the child, they should not make their own decisions. Have you seen common sense in a child? They will recklessly run onto a street to fetch a ball, they will put their hands on a hot stove. Personally, when I was younger I grabbed a bowel that had steaming hot water with corn in it.
Unaware of this, I grabbed it and it burnt my hands. If I had logic, reason and common sense to discern, I would not have done this. I am also aware that if kids aren't learning, they need personal experience.
However I do not accept that ever lesson needs to be done this way. If a kid just doesn't know how to learn or what to learn, the child should not have the right to pick the lessons in order to be taught.

In a well spoken civilised and literate world, we need well spoken literate and civilised people.

There is a pre requisite to that.
We call it base line education.
Debate Round No. 3


1. Con seems to imply that "Free Will" is man-made, a privilege endowed by some superior authority, naturally unendowed
Free Will is a fact of reality
The recognition of Free Will is in today's society seemingly a conditional privilege handed down
Though, logic dictates that if we're all morally equal, by the logical principles of universality and noncontradiction, the same choices afforded to some must be afforded to all, and the choices deprived from some must be deprived from all
Therefore, the coherent conclusion is that if some have their Free Will reciprocally respected, then all must have their Free Will respected subject to the same terms and conditions

2. Con says that the terms and conditions to which the Free Will of children are subject is the attainment of logic and reason which is "received FOR the child"
Deduction of Con's statements reveal that it is the belief that real understanding can be imposed coercively, not actively integrated committedly

Define basic ed?


"1. Con seems to imply that "Free Will" is man-made, a privilege endowed by some superior authority..."

I didn't, I said it is a RIGHT and I will fight for the right of free will with everything I have.
Idk where you're getting this stuff of mine? haha I never said it.

"2. Con says that the terms and conditions..."

I am saying that the child should be able to choose what he wants to do...
WHEN he gets to an amount of intelligence capable of making rational choices in our society.
It's the same argument as, why don't monkeys get human rights? Well if they did, they could vote. But they aren't educated enough to be helpful in our society. Same reason as why you can legally drink, smoke, vote, go to college, get a job when you're an adult. Because a 6 year old isn't going to make good choices. Even for him self.

I advocate free will and equality. Only when the person is capable of it.

That's like going into a psych ward and saying, you got free will, do what ever you want.
Debate Round No. 4


Please note that Con has not provided definitions requested

Con has persisted with this logical proposition:
"I do not doubt the right to free will"
"...until logic and reason are received for the child, they should not make their own decisions"

Because Con agrees "Free Will" is naturally endowed due to our moral equality as human beings and then equates "Free Will" with a Natural Right[1], I must now show the logical failing in aforesaid propositions.
The first statement endorses the "Right to Free Will" which con has agreed is endowed by Nature.
The second statement qualifies the Right, which by definition cannot be the case.
This is the treatment given moral violators, slaves and animals.

Also, Con ignores the fact that adults are not ever qualified based on their reasoning skills. The legal definition of "adult" is predicated on an arbitrary number of years of existence.

Traditionally, Rights are reserved for morally conscious beings


Your ignorance is surprising. I said there was a pre-requisite for education in our society. for the same reason you're not allowed to vote to an older age, due to not have the pre-requisite for education.

Why can't you vote at 6??? Because instead of perhaps voting for someone you like, you would literally ask what to do.
Why can't you drive at the age of 12? Because the part of your brain that hasn't yet developed needs to. What do you think puberty is?

I either think your being too politically correct to hold an argument against me, or something is going on.
Address MY issues.

We shouldn't give kids 'free will' until they are capable of being a functioning member of society.
That's my argument.

Am I saying the current method can't be improved? No... it has holes, people fall through the cracks. I fell through the cracks of education, but I made it back up.

Even if you did give kids free will, they are still going to earn directly off of their parents, making your point invalid.
Debate Round No. 5
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Kryptic 3 years ago
btw, the word limit is dreadful XD
Posted by Kryptic 3 years ago
let me debate you and I will hold my self well :)
Posted by Mremann87 3 years ago
By the way, the "marvels" of which I speak are babies who aren't mentally trampled before their first steps and and conditioned to have an abusive relationship with ignorance and failure to which "some" have seemed well acquainted.
Posted by Mremann87 3 years ago
Wow so critical of yourselves and those others who haven't crossed the mystical threshold called the legal age of consent.
Yet adults must be the generally the picture of wisdom by your estimations.
Sadly makes me wonder...

Do you also happen to think so meek of those marvels who accomplish incredible feats in record time and without a second thought of failure?

You can interpret this as rhetorical if you'd like.
Posted by Stefy 3 years ago
Not before the age of like 16 or so. Children are idiots.
Posted by jq 3 years ago
I would love to debate this topic, however i do not meet your "criteria", please some people are very skilled but are just starting out, don't make complicated criteria
Posted by Kryptic 3 years ago
I'd like to accept this challenge as I strongly disagree with this topic. I have several reasons as to why. however I can't 'accept' it as I haven't got the right pre-requesites.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Wylted 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: I understand Con's frustration, with pro. The debaters seem to be arguing past each other which makes the decision harder. Ultimately pro dropped con's arguments showing the negative effects of not directing the learning of children (burning hand, creationism etc.) pro you have to answer these questions. I also urge pro to write more clearly. For example he writes arrested and agency in the first round and uses them in an unusual way. Though I understand these words, it can make comprehension harder. Try using small words where possible, and use their normal way of usage, not an alternate way, regardless of whether that way is also correct. Another thing for pro to consider is that in debates limited to 1,000 characters, the simpler argument wins. If you have 2 simple arguments, it comes down to the better one, but this one was simple vs complicated, and without enough characters to elaborate on the complicated one, pro was doomed to failure. Please learn to spell things out for ju