Consent and the Classroom

I recently was rereading part of Octavia Butler’s “Bloodchild.” It reminded me of our classroom discussion earlier in the semester of consent. When we hear consent I think we automatically consider it in a sexual manner, and this course changed my perspective on this. The formal definition of consent is: “permission for something to happen or agreement to do something.” Yet I had never considered it in my education.
There are many new rules, regulations and programs that are implemented throughout ones primary education. In high school I recall when common core was introduced in my Freshman year. No one ever asked about how the students felt, whether the common core or the old method is better for students. I realized I had little to no control over my education. Everybody in my high school despised the common core, and even the teachers were scrambling learning how to teach the new and hasty program. Several teachers expressed their dissent with the program with the students and yet, it was implemented in my high school although no one seemed to like it. This reminds me of my point in my “Bloodchild” essay that there is an education hierarchy. In this hierarchy, each person is hounded from those above. Although teachers may not believe a program is the best for the students, they have a duty to administrators and institutions. Teachers often must listen to those above them because they have no choice. I argue that institutions are flawed in my essay and the weaker groups must have a voice for a more efficient system.
It reminds me of “Bloodchild” because the Preserve was established years before Gan was born, a system that he forced into. He did not consent to participate in this institution however it is expected of him to follow the rules and be a willing participant. T’Gatoi represents the “teachers/faculty” in this system. She has power however she is still subservient to the Tlic officials above her, as faculty are to administrators. “Bloodchild” is not only a commentary on the relationship between students and faculty but their relationships to institutions as well.

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