Sunday, July 22, 2007

Baptist Seminary Offers Homemaking Degree... Controversial?

Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary is going to start offering a degree in homemaking this fall, aimed at pastor's wives. I think that it's a great idea, personally. However, I guess not everyone thinks that it is such a hot idea. One Baptist blogger nearly "shot Diet Coke out of his nose" after hearing about it, and found the degree "quite silly."

I suppose that it all boils down to what we find important. Personally, I find my children to be very important. They are important enough to me that I gave up a job paying more than $60k to stay at home with them. They are important enough to me that rather than sending my daughter off to public school this fall to be a Kindergartener, she will be home at me learning reading, math, history, science, music, and Bible.

How much do we value our kids anyway? If the average day care worker makes $7.50 an hour (when I worked at day care I got paid less, but I know some get paid more), then the price per hour per child is pitiful. In Arizona the child/teacher ratio is 5:1 for infants, 6:1 for toddlers, 8:1 for 2 year olds, 13:1 for 3 year olds, 15:1 for 4 year olds, and 20:1 for 5 year olds. So what does your $7.50 an hour child care worker actually get paid? If you have an infant, your child care worker is getting paid around $1.50 an hour to take care of your child (they get paid $1.50 an hour for the other 4 children in her care as well). But wait... if you have a 5 year old in a class of 20 children... your child care worker is getting paid a pitiful $.38 an hour to watch your child specifically. That's not what you're paying, but that's what ends up getting filtered to your child care worker. No wonder we think that mothers should go out and get a real job! We shell out a whopping $.38 an hour for a child care worker to watch our 5 year olds!

I think a homemaking degree is a good thing. I wouldn't know how to sew if my grandma hadn't taught me. Even though I don't often make my own clothes, it's a good skill to learn. I have to use sewing skills to fix my daughter's doll carrier, for just a recent example. Cooking, nutrition, and just in general, bringing up your kids to learn to love God... they are all important skills.

So I'll keep that $.38 an hour and I'll stay home and watch my own. They are more valuable to me than that.

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